The point of this thread is to convey my biased opinion to you of what the most important fielding positions are. I'm not suggesting that I have a perfect understanding, but I might know something you didn't that you'll find useful. VERY IMPORTANT! -----> My Definiton of Most Important Fielding Positions: Those positions that stand to gain or lose the most as you move away from the recs, above or below
. I'm not
defining most important by who gets the most chances in the field (i.e.1B). There's not necessarily anything wrong with that def., but thats a different angle/analysis. I'm also not defining most important by who has the highest ratings (i.e.SS). There's nothing wrong with that def. either, but again thats looking from a different angle.
- Its hard to systematically compare C to the other positions since its such a different beast, but I feel its tops. According to MikeT23's research Pitch Calling lowers ERA
by about .12 earned runs per 10pts of PC. Even if we round down to .10 thats a huge difference. Moving from the 50PC rec to a 90PC catcher saves you .40 runs/9. That one rating from one position just cut your ERA by 10%. I make it a priority to have a high PC catcher. (There has already been a 10 page RSF on this subject. I haven't added any research of my own to prove this and am only going off of what someone else has shared and what seems to be the case as my eyeballs notice. If you feel PC doesn't make that big of an impact thats fine. Just mentally move catcher further down this list :) )
You don't stand to gain/lose much with high/low range or glove (a few passed balls
), but the CS% you get from arm strength and arm accuracy can be broken down essentially into +/- plays
. If you take the league avg. CS% and multiply it by attempts on your C, then take that number and subtract it from the number of runners your guy threw out, you'll have plus plays. Example: If 100 runners attempted to steal on your C and the league avg CS% is 25%, mulitiply .25 X 100 and you get 25. If your C threw out 35, 35-25 = 10+plays.
(My research is pretty limited in some ways and concrete in others, so if you have hard stats you want to shoot me down with, I have no problems with that. I'm just going on what I feel I have learned to date.)
- Plus/Minus plays
are capped at 30. Sure, you'll find an instance where someone gets 35, but thats similar to a .300 hitter hitting .350. He got lucky. Another season he'll hit .250 and that fielder will only get 25+plays. But anyone with 100 Rng and 100 AS should average 30 per 1450 innings. So, if an 80Rng SS will be neutral and a 100Rng SS will get 30, you're picking up 1.5+plays for every point of range. Thats the second highest ratio next to CFers. So, there is a lot to be gained quickly by exceeding the recs. Same thing going down. You expect a 0Rng SS to make 30-plays (it should
work like that anyway), but you get to the 20-25 area pretty quickly.
, no position has more to gain/lose my deviating from the recs' glove and arm accuracy ratings. You know this already so I won't expand.
Concerning double plays
, SS seems to have 1/3 of the responsibility (shared with 2B) and their ability to contribute is based on range and presumably arm strength. This will probably be the most controversial point in this thread so I highly recommend you read this thread
. Yes that is SLB data, but if you think WIS rewrote any of their algorithms just for the sake of making this game different you're most likely mistaken. I think the only difference between HBD and SLB engines for the most part are the initial filters. SLB has normalization. HBD has ratings. Once you get past those filters and have some hard numbers, I can't imagine why it would be computed differently. To make a long story short, if they thought 2Bs should have twice the contribution towards turning a DP in SLB, I highly doubt they'd make it a different ratio in this game...
- IMO the position least understood and taken advantage of by users. As for Rng/AS it comes in 3rd in how quickly you accumulate +/- plays
as you deviate from the recs. In the thread I linked in the previous paragraph, it also talks about how +plays on the infield are much more valuable than +plays in the outfield, so that is factored in as well.
, glove almost doesn't matter at 2B. The difference between a 60 and an 85 isn't much. So not much value to be gained/lost in either direction here.
, the biggest factor that determines whether one is turned (outside of runner's speed) is your 2Bs Rng and presumably AS. (SLB only has range ratings that contribute towards +plays and DPs. So since in HBD AS contributes towards +plays I assume it counts towards DPs as well.) As shared earlier, the 2B has a 2:1 ratio of responsibilty with the SS, and thats why 2B is so high up on the list. There's an aweful lot of "hidden" value owners are missing out on here.
are gained quicker here than any other position. The recommended Rng is 85. So an 85 guy will get 0 +plays on average and a 100Rng guy will get 30. Thats a 2:1 ratio of +plays/point. However as previously mentioned, +plays don't mean as much in the outfield. Also, the AS value is nearly meaningless. Putting a SS in CF is a complete waste of an arm. You might get 1 extra +play a season.
, glove matters quite a bit. CFers make plently of errors if you're not careful. Glove is a bit more forgiving than Rng at this position, but not by a ton. I'm not sure how much AA matters (maybe someone can fill me in).
What I feel is a common mistake owners make, is which of two RHed throwing players to put in CF and which to put at 2B. Glv/AA matter more at CF. Rng/AS matter more at 2B. So if you have a 90/80/60/60 player and a 85/85/60/60 player, the first should play 2B and the latter should play CF.
can be gained at a similar rate to RF/LF, but they matter more on the IF.
, glove is very important here. Lots of RHed pull hitters giving the 3Bman lots of chances to screw up.
3B plays a small role in turning DPs
AS/AA don't seem to have as much value here as you deviate from the recs as you'd expect. Those 75/75/55/55 guys that aren't really good enough for 2B and you really hate wasting them in LF, make great 3Bmen. Not sure most people realize that.
can be had pretty quick on either side of 40 Range. Remember that every position has (or is supposed to have) a 30 +/- spectrum. So a 20 range 1Bman will make around 15- plays. A DH/C type will be really bad. And I think you pick up +plays a little faster on the north side of 40 at 1B, than you can on the north side of 55 in LF.
, glove is meaningless. 20 glove. 40 glove. 80 glove. Its the difference between 5,2,and 1 errors per season.
are gained much slower here. Players 20 points ahead of recs will get about 15+plays. Its pretty linear from 55 to 100 Range, so those 75/75/55/55 guys are not very efficient here. I did play a 47 range guy there one year and he made 15 -plays in 1100 innings, so it may drop pretty quick going down.
, there isn't much concern. An average LFer will make a handful of errors a season. A guy with 100 glove rating will make zero. Not much gained and not very efficient to waste a glove here.
- You can play a rock in RF. The Range/Glove ratings are broken (you have to think). A 10/20/60/60 DH will make 10 errors and 20 -plays. The same guy playing 1B makes 5 errors and 30 -plays. Those DH types come cheap sometimes, so it may be more efficient to play one in RF instead of spending big for a RFer that fits the mold.