Sunday, July 18, 2010

Some Musing On My Part

. Sunday, July 18, 2010

As a looked around the worlds I am currently a part of.
I asked myself a singular yet complex question.
What are the most prized prospect positions in HBD?

Now to answer this question i had to think back to not only my first season in Wright. But also back to all the seasons i've played.

It was always a constant theme of superficial lust and outward gluttony.
Why do I use such terms you ask? It's a simple answer, it's the truth.

As I combed the deep caverns of my overly active and imaginative mind.
I came to the conclusion that HBD is much like real life in the evaluation of prospects.

Starting pitching is the most highly sought after off all in HBD.
The thought process that really good pitching beats great hitting transfers to the game.
A top 3 starter prospect is worth their weight in gold and then some in the game.
I've noticed that having a top starter is like being handed a blank check.
You can name your price and almost always it will be met by someone.

It's the one thing you can never really overpay for. The right starter can push you from wildcard contender to a potential world series champion(See Pedro Seneca or Darryl Brower).
It's not some brand new revelation i've had however, i've known this since my second season of HBD.

Starting pitching is like the QB or PG of HBD. It makes everything go and having a great one can get you over the hump.
It's the rarest gem in the draft, international free agency, free agency and on the trade market.
Once it has been acquired the chances of the starter being moved are very very low unless a freak of a player comes onto the trade market.

After starters the main position of interest also can be the pitcher's best friend.
The golden glove, silver slugging, base stealing short stop.
One could argue that having the right all around SS is just as valuable as a top tier starter.
The SS for the most part anchors your infield defense.
If they are a true SS they can save your pitcher many heart breaks and headaches.
That grounder up the middle becomes a out. That screaming liner turns into a inning ending double play.
That softly lofted hit becomes a over the shoulder catch for the out.
Less pitches, less opportunities, more outs leads to more wins.
Of course the fielding ratings are moot if the SS is left handed as the game punishes the lefties with more errors(since in real life left handers can only play 1B in the infield.)

Then if the bat is capable of say a 20-100-.280 season.
The value increases even further as the SS becomes the all around SS we talked about earlier.

Clean up hitters are the next most prized amongst prospects.
The power bat who can anchor the lineup is sought after regardless of position.
Normally there is a glut of them at 1B,LF & DH but depending on the league you play in and how special the bat is.
Teams will still seek out a great bat by any means necessary.
Those bats are normally the easier of the prospects we will describe today.
The reason being that the focus is more solely placed up SP,SS and C.
It doesn't stop the need for teams nor does it end the supply and demand.
But the assumption is much like in the NFL draft. You take the rarer prize even if it has less talent, because if it works out the reward is higher.

The final position we will look at is Joe Mauer.
Ok fine we mean catcher but Mauer is exactly what you mean when you talk about a complete catcher.
Outside of a true number one SP, catcher is probably the rarest of all in HBD.
Not just at the prospect level(you may find 1-2 great ones every 2 seasons)but also in the major leagues.
When they are found they do not get moved for anything outside of a true number one.
Most owners are satisfied with a guy who can call a good game and hit .250 without killing their lineup.
But if you can find a true franchise player at the catcher position.
Someone who can mesh with your pitching staff while giving your lineup a elite bat.
I myself would argue that it is the most premier prospect you can have.

Now i realize that some will not agree with me.
Some will ask, "what about RP,CF,2B or 3B?"
I would tell them that while those types of prospects are sought after.
The amount of guys that you can get to play those positions well dilutes the demand for them.
I wouldn't dream of saying that the players at those positions don't deserve credit as a valued farm hand. But in reality the owners of the worlds make
the rules of demand.
Those that were not listed don't make the cut.
But the great news is, more often than not those positions are readily available in trade so getting them is usually easier than chasing anything else.