Hall of Fame
Daily blurbs from the Guru
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2/3 - Congrats to Football Pickoff Champion ISLAM, who outdid Seattle by winning back-to-back championships. He also won the Midseason championship, so that prize will roll down to midseason runner-up Gman40, and the playoff champion was Hawkeye, the only entrant who correctly picked all 11 playoff game winners.
All prize winners will be notified by email by the middle of February. See item 7 in the rules for a listing of all prizes. Thanks to all who played, and please come back next year.
All prize winners will be notified by email by the middle of February. See item 7 in the rules for a listing of all prizes. Thanks to all who played, and please come back next year.
1/28 - Today I am introducing a new DFS affiliate: Star Fantasy Leagues. Although formed in 2012, this site is now fully operational and poised for growth. They cap the amount of lineups a user can enter into any single contest, deliberately keeping their contests smaller as many players are not interested in playing a 90,000 person tournament. Daily contests are now offered for NBA and NHL, and (of course) MLB and NFL contests will also be offered in-season. In addition to a variety daily contest formats, SFL offers a full season league platform for traditional fantasy players. Baseball leagues will begin forming during spring training.
For those who played NBA DFS contests at DraftStreet over the past years, Star provides an almost seamless transition, as the point formula for NBA contests is the same (see scoring formula). That also makes it convenient to integrate into the RotoGuru arsenal of analytical tools, as that scoring formula has already been tracked (in the background) all season, in spite of DraftStreet’s demise. I’ve started picking up NBA contest salary history for Star since mid-January. So you can immediately take advantage of tools and/or reports such as Daily Fantasy Points, sortable stats, and individual player histories. If you would like to try out the site, please register using this link. You can register for free and immediately play in daily freerolls. If/when you decide to make a deposit, you can get a 20% deposit bonus using code SFL20.
1/15 - The 2015 MLB schedule is now available in spreadsheet format. The Excel spreadsheet has two formats, each displayed in a separate sheet - one with dates in a column, and the other transposed with dates in a row. Suit yourself. The spreadsheet can be downloaded here: MLB_schedule_2015.xls. (Note that this spreadsheet will not be updated during the season to adjust for postponements.)
HTML formatting is also available using the standard MLB Schedule Grid Display Generator. This tool provides several formatting options, and will be updated during the season to adjust for rescheduled games.
12/23 - Congratulation to twilson, who finshed the RIFC regular season in the #2 position and emerged last night as this year’s RIFC champion, overtaking runner-up Toral. Twilson is also a two-time winner of Football Pickoff, so he evidently knows his NFL football.
Full results from the RIFC and the qualifying leagues can be found in the RIFC 2014 Final Recap thread.
As we approach the end of the NFL regular season, please note that I will not be posting DFS stats and salaries (FanDuel, etc) during the postseason. My processing routines do not adapt well to playoff idiosyncrasies, and with a limited number of teams in play each weekend, you should be able to manage it all on your own.
Football Pickoff will continue through the playoffs, as usual. And if you haven’t played Football Pickoff all season, you can always start now, as there will be separate standings available just for the playoff weeks.
11/13 - The NBA Stat Summarizer has been enhanced.
You can now select to summarize only home games or away games. So if you run two summaries – one for home games, and one for away games – then you’ll effectively have home/away splits for all players.
You can also filter out any games in which a player played less than a specified number of minutes. I had already allowed you to select based on starting/non-starting, but this will further allow you to filter out games in which a player – starting or not – appeared for less than a user-specified number of minutes.
Finally, I’ve now integrated the DFS salary data with this report, so you can get current (or past) DFS salary and position data (FanDuel, DraftKings, & DraftDay) for each player as of any specified game day.
Have fun. Let me know if there are other selection criteria that might be useful.
11/6 - I added some stats export features this morning. Check these out:
The NBA sortable stats now provides an option to export data in a SCSV (semicolon separated values) text format, suitable for importing into Excel or other applications that can accept text-based imports. The data presented is essentially the same as that which would otherwise be produced in the standard html format.
I’ve also released a NBA Stat Summarizer, which allows for greater flexibility in selecting date ranges and also enables inclusion of only stats for games started (or not started). This routine produces most stat components (e.g., pts, assist, rebounds, etc.) as well as related fantasy points for FanDuel, DraftKings, and DraftDay. It does, however, lack salary data.
If you are interested in either of these facilities, please give them a try. I have done some testing, but it’s always possible that I’ve overlooked something. If you find errors, or if you have ideas for further enhancements, please send an email to email@example.com.
10/31 - NBA reporting is rounding into form. Sortable stats and daily point summaries are up and running, as well as the individual player pages. I’ll soon be adding some new features, including easier sortable stats exporting and simpler game-day selections, but I first want to be sure that the status quo is working properly. Other than a few DraftKings position discrepancies (Related to my feed from DK – should be fixed soon, I hope), I’m not aware of any glitches. I’ll rely on all of you to tell me what, if anything, you think isn’t working yet.
Links for the NBA reporting can be found in the left menu.
9/23 - Calling all Hoops managers!
Emails have been sent to all managers in last year’s RIHC leagues. Please check your email, and respond ASAP. If you can’t find the email, or if you didn’t play last season and would like to try it this year, please post in this thread. The NBA season starts 5 weeks from today, so we need to get organized now.
Prize notifications for GuruGolf were emailed yesterday. If you were expecting to receive a prize, check your inbox. A season-long listing of all prize winning teams (best ball and worst ball) is on the news page of the GuruGolf site.
Interestingly enough, the top season-ending franchise value ($5890) was also achieved by Smith32. Did he win the championship because he achieved the highest value, or did he achieve the highest value because he had the best stroke play? Hard to say – and maybe a bit of both. But it sounds like the price change formula is synching fairly well with stroke value.
Prize determinations for the entire 2014 season will be resolved and emails will be sent to all winners sometime in the next week or so. If you qualified for a prize, please be sure that your registered email address is current (see the GuruGolf “My Account” page). Note that each registrant may win only one prize during the season. The prize awarded will be the prize with the highest value for which the registrant has qualified.
Thanks to all for a great season! GuruGolf will resume with a new season in early 2015.
9/9 - NFL player detail pages and Weekly Points reports are now loaded with Week #1 point and salary data for Fireleague, DraftKings, FanDuel, and DraftDay. Be aware that these are my own independent point calculations, based on the scoring formulas published at each game site. There may be some discrepancies if the site has a different formula interpretation or different underlying stats – although I’ve done some spot checking and so far, everything seems to be in agreement with what I’ve seen reported at the sites (other than a few minor stat discrepancies.)
Sortable stats will be updated for all four games over the next day or so. Meanwhile, if you notice anything that seems to be incorrect in any of the football reporting, please let me know. There are lots of nooks and crannies, and you may find something that I haven’t noticed.
Football Pickoff Standings are complete for week #1. Positive scores were achieved by 46% of all entries, which is fairly balanced. But if you didn’t enter for week #1, you can still enter now and your opening zero will put you slightly above the median! Congrats to Gillette, who posted the top score (+552) with 13 correct picks, including a doubling of Tennessee over Kansas City. On to week #2!
9/8 - I’ll be spending a good bit of time today reconciling a lot of football data. So far, I’ve got preliminary week #1 points posted for FireLeague in the daily point report, but until I do some more analysis, those points won’t be ported over to the player pages, sortable stats, or the Assimilator. Hopefully, that will be done by sometime tomorrow.
I’m also working on similar data for FanDuel, DraftKings, and DraftDay (which merged operations with FanThrowdown over the weekend). Again, expect that info to be available by mid-week.
9/5 - Hall of Fame Day!
Before we turn the calendar on another season, it’s time to recognize those who excelled during the past year in various RotoGuru competitions. I am pleased to announce the RotoGuru Hall of Fame Class of 2013-14:
Congrats to all of these competitors.
9/2 - Progress.
I now have preseason data posted for the Fireleague Salary Cap football games.
8/30 - Miss me?
It’s been almost two months since my last blurb. I’ve been traveling quite a bit this summer, and focusing mostly on DailyBaseballData.com. Frankly, I’m not sure what my ongoing RotoGuru blurb strategy should be. But that’s a topic for another day
I came out of hibernation today to provide an update on football preparations. This morning, I launched Football Pickoff for 2014. I know the layout is a bit antiquated by today’s web standards, as it’s essentially unchanged in appearance since the game was introduced way back in 2002. There have been some “behind the scenes” advances to automate things that used to be done manually. But in terms of basic functionality, my attitude is “if it ain’t broke…”. I think it’s all working properly, but please report anything that seems incorrect or out of date.
I do plan to provide sortable stats for several football formats again this year. First up will be Fireleague – which is the successor game to the old Smallworld format. I hope to have those stats (players, prices, etc.) up sometime early next week. Later, I’ll be adding sortable stats for the affiliated daily contest sites, starting with FanDuel and DraftKings. Not sure if those will be up before NFL Week #1, but frankly, the sortable stats aren’t of much value until after some stats start to accumulate. In any event, I’ll get them out when I can.
Speaking of daily contest sites, two significant sites were bought out by DraftKings over the summer. DraftStreet and StarStreet were both taken over by DK, which now seems to be the primary competitor of FanDuel. I suspect there will be more consolidation in that space over the next year. Both DraftStreet and StarStreet once offered interesting game alternatives (weekly contests for DS, and a stock market version for SS), but it seems that there just isn’t enough interest to sustain those one-off formats. Too bad, as I enjoyed both of those game styles.
6/23 - The Travelers Championship may have lacked many marquis names on Sunday afternoon, but the tournament did get a marquis finish from Kevin Streelman, who not only birdied the final seven holes (surging from -8 to -15) to claim a one-stroke win, but he one-putted his last ten holes. Putt for dough!
Nine GuruGolf teams had Streelman this weekend, but not the top best ball team, Smith32 (-51), who didn’t need him. Worst ball honors went to Cyberwahoo4 (+45), who also sent out a Streelman-free foursome.
This was a rough price-change week for a lot of GuruGolf teams, as the more expensive golfers generally fared not-so-well. 29 golfers entered the tournament with GuruGolf prices exceeding $1000 – roughly 1-in-5. Only two of those golfers ranked in the top-ten for the week – using my proprietary GuruGolf value model, which rewards birdie and eagles more than it penalizes bogeys, and which also scores each hole based on relative difficulty. Streelman still ranked #1 for the week. The only two $1000+ golfers in the top ten were K.J. Choi ($1110) and Sergio Garcia ($1480). Meanwhile, a number of high priced golfers took it on the chin this week – even some who made the cut. Notable in that last group were Matt Kuchar, Bubba Watson, Jason Day, and Keegan Bradley. All four of those guys were ranked in the 40-50 range for the week, and as the highest priced golfers in the field, that pulled their prices down. It’s unusual to see some GuruGolf teams with all four golfers making the cut and still losing team value – but that happened in a few instances this week. The curse of being able to afford high-priced golfers, I guess. In any event, the pricing model was the same this week as for all weeks; the results just look a bit wacky.
6/16 - The U.S. Open failed to deliver much drama this year. Now, If Martin Kaymer had just stayed home it could have been quite different, as the battle for second was crowded throughout.
Here are the two GuruGolf prize winners for the U.S. Open:
There are four tournaments between the U.S. Open and British Open. The next GuruGolf prize contest will cover those four weeks - the "Open Faced Sandwich" contest.
The NBA Finals failed to deliver much drama either. Often, you can stay away from NBA games until the fourth quarter and still see most of the tension. But last night you had to watch to 1st quarter to see any semblance of a story other than total domination by the Spurs. Looking back over the whole series, LeBron’s cramping in game #1 turned out only to be a footnote. The real story of this series was the total mismatch over the final three games.
This weekend also closed out the "Spring to the Open" Contest. Here are the two prize winners, both with fairly solid margins:
Best ball and worst ball prizes will be provided for this week’s U.S. Open. Remember also that the U.S. Open is not eligible to be a mulligan week for the full season standings. Also, if you would like to add any of the unlisted U.S. Open golfers to your foursome this week, please send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) by Wednesday morning and I’ll add them.
6/2 - Only two GuruGolf foursomes had tournament winner Hideki Matsuyama yesterday. One of those was mine! But the top best ball team, cyberwahoo2 (-53), didn’t need him. Neither did the top worst ball team, NYAHS TEAM (+58), who got all four of his golfers through the cut, and then watched a bunch of double bogeys emerge – and even one quadruple bogey.
We’re down to the final week of GuruGolf’s “Spring to the Open” contest, and at least three teams are in contention for the best ball title, while a bunch of teams are clustered near the top of the worst ball standings. RotoGuru logo golf balls hang in the balance!
5/28 - Over the past week or so, I've made a number of enhancements to various pages and files.
1. I've started reporting batting order in some places. On the individual player pages, it appears in the third column of the daily history, just after the ^(starter) indicator. It's similarly shown in the daily point summary, and you can access it in daily stat csv extract by appending &bo=1 to the url. (example: http://dailybaseballdata.com/cgi-bin/getstats.pl?out=csv&bo=1).
2. In addition to batting order, I've added the game score to the daily point summary. Here's a sample URL: http://rotoguru1.com/cgi-bin/byday.pl?game=fd.
3. In the individual player pages, the projected starting pitcher (and his L/R indicator) are now shown for the current day. Here is a sample page for Troy Tulowitzki. Notice that batting order sequence for each game appears in the 3rd column (immediately below the "Daily Results" separator), and the opposing starter is shown for the current day (hover over the L/R indicator to see the name and game details).
4. An alternate CSV file format is now provided for the Batter vs Pitcher report. The alternate version eliminates all quote signs (") and replaces all commas in names with semicolons. While Excel can easily accommodate the original format, the alternate form may be useful for other means of access, as commas will be used exclusively as data delimiters. Links for both CSV formats appear just above the body of the report.
All of these enhancements were made in response to suggestions from users. While not all requests can be implemented, I'll at least consider all ideas. Suggestions may be sent to email@example.com.
5/19 - Congrats to Kooldad-5, who took GuruGolf best ball honors (-48) over the weekend with a very balanced foursome – each golfers posting a score between -6 and -8. Three teams shared worst ball honors with a score of +44.
We’ve just passed the quarter pole on the MLB season. Four teams have winning percentages above 60%: Detroit (.692), Oakland (.636), San Francosco (.622), and Milwaukee(!) (.614). Only three teams have winning percentages below 40%: the Cubs (.357), Houston (.364), and Arizona (.391). The D-backs have responded by hiring Tony LaRussa to be “Chief Baseball Officer,” so we’ll have to see whether they can climb back to their customary .500 ways.
Of more fantasy relevance, I took a look at the ESPN player rater. The top two players are both on Colorado. Troy Tulowitzki ranks #1. He was a consensus late first round pick in the RIBC draft this year, so that’s not a shocker. But #2 is Charlie Blackmon, who was only drafted in two of the five RIBC leagues, and the earliest of those was in the mid-24th round. It’s pretty clear no one saw that coming. In the top RIBC league, team “Holt 2014” added Blackmon as a free agent addition on April 4th. Those are the types of pickups that can be difference-makers – assuming that Blackmon’s prowess persists.
5/13 - Since the start of the season, I've been gradually tinkering with the layout and contents of individual baseball player detail pages. If you haven't looked at one recently, you might find some useful data that you didn't realize was there.
Here's a sample page: Yasiel Puig
The top of the page has links to seven other sites. If you have a favorite site for player detail info (such as split stats or career history), I've probably got a direct link for you.
The next section shows the current position eligibility for the six affiliated contest sites. For Puig, that's not a very interesting list, but for some players, this is a convenient place to pick up on some of the position idiosyncrasies of other sites.
Next, we get to the day by day histories. The top section shows per-game averages over various periods for each scoring system. You can also see how those averages change if only games started are included, and how those starting averages break down by the opposing starter's left/right split. I'm not sure I've seen that breakdown so conveniently presented anywhere else.
Then you can see the day by day results, which also show whether the player started (and at what position), the hand of the opposing starter, and the daily points and prices for each contest site. If you hover the cursor over the pitcher's hand, you can see the name of that pitcher. If you hover the cursor over any daily point value, you can see the underlying stats. And if the player played in a doubleheader (as was the case for Puig on May 1st), you can see the results for each game separately. There is also a link to each day's boxscore at MLB.com.
By default, this page shows the last 30 days of history, but there is a link below the table for the full season of history.
5/12 - As darkness crowded in, I was afraid that The Players Championship was headed toward a Monday morning playoff, which would have meant I would need to wait until Monday to close out the tournament on GuruGolf as well. Not a big deal, but an annoyance, nonetheless. But then Martin Kaymer holed a putt on 17th that got me jumping out of my seat with an exclamatory “Whoa!”. For a final round without Tiger or Phil, that was about as much excitement as there had been all afternoon. And I suspect most viewers had already moved on to other things, with Kaymer sporting a 3-stroke lead during a weather delay.
5/5 - This weekend’s GuruGolf results were more balanced than the prior week’s debacle. Finding four golfers who made the cut was still a challenge (just 13 foursomes pulled it off), but 50 teams did find tournament winner J.B. Holmes, including 10 of the top 15 teams this week. Two teams tied for the top best ball score of -45, while Raz2 claimed the worst ball honors by three strokes (+49).
The NBA offered up five game #7s this weekend, but only two of those games went down to the wire. Kind of anticlimactic. I ended up watching the golf tournament instead of the Spurs blowing out Dallas.
Baseball offers up 13 games today, which is a pretty full slate for a Monday. The weather looks mostly benign, which is a nice sign after a pretty brutal week of postponements.
4/28 - The Zurich Classic was a brutal event for most of the top GuruGolf teams. Only two of the current top 14 teams had as many as 3 golfers survive the second round cut, and although most of the top teams had two survivors, some of those golfers failed to play on Sunday (due to a second “MDF” cut after the third round). The string of red numbers in the weekly $change column (where red is not good) is stunning. Only one team had four golfers play all four rounds. Probably a good week to rub some dirt on the wounds and move on.
If you’re interested in more “beefy” blurbs related to baseball, check out DailyBaseballData.com. I’ve lined up a stable of correspondents this year – some from established fantasy baseball sites, and some just “regular guys” who play daily baseball contests. I’m hoping to be able to regularly provide some fresh daily content over there. As a consequence, daily baseball commentary in the RotoGuru blurb-space is likely to remain limited.
4/21 - Two GuruGolf teams tied for the top best ball score (-45) this weekend. Not surprisingly, they had three golfers in common – Kuchar, Huh, English – and they also had the two top dollar value gains for the weekend. On the worst ball side, Nog’s Nutcrackers posted a 3-stroke margin with a +51.
For example, here is a FanDuel report showing point data for past games against starting pitchers who throw with the same hand as the current day starter. Hover over a player’s name in the table to see the details of the next listed opposing starter. If it’s a right-hander, then that player’s point data in the table is only for games in which he started against a right-hander. Note that this is not a pure lefty-righty split; it is based only on the throwing arm of the starter. If a lefty starts a game but is later relieved by a righty, all stats for that game are categorized as lefty starter stats.
As always, click on any column heading to sort the table by that column.
If you click on any player name, you’ll go to the day-by-day point history for that player. This table now shows the throwing arm of the opposing starter for each game – and if you hover over the L/R indicator, you can also see the starting pitcher’s name.
I used to provide the ability to filter for only hitters who were facing opposite handed starters. With this latest update, I’ve eliminated that capability, as I believe that the new approach is much more relevant. I considered leaving the old approach in as an option, but was afraid that the distinction might be too confusing. I think that once you get accustomed to the new approach, you’ll find it to be of significant utility.
4/17 - The NBA regular season has come to a close, and now – especially to many casual fans – the real season begins. I’ll try to keep the NBA stats processing going through the playoffs, since the daily contest sites will continue to offer contests for the next several rounds, at least.
Congratulations to longtime Gurupie Coldwater Coyotes for winning the 2013-14 RotoGuru Invitational Hoops Challenge, ending the three-year reign of domination by Florian. I’ve started a wrap-up thread in the Hoops Forum for final standings and comments from participants in any of the RIHC leagues this year.
At long last, I hope to send out notifications to the prize winners in the Market Madness Contest later today (or tomorrow at the latest). If you expect to receive one, check the email address that you registered under.
The RBC Heritage golf tournament is under way on Hilton Head Island, and Harris English is the most widely owned GuruGolfer this week, on roughly 35% of all foursomes.
4/15 - Finally, I have the sortable stats up and running. While the generally layout and functionality is similar to that of recent seasons, there are some new features this year that should be of particular value in supporting daily contest lineup decisions.
Here's a quick rundown on the current capabilities:
Since the updates are now set up to run automatically, there is always a chance that some data will be screwed up if the various data feeds fail. I'll do my best to make sure that all data is getting populated on schedule, but if you notice anything that looks goofy, please let me know via email. Your eyes are my best spot-checking tool. Don't assume that I'm already aware of any apparent glitch.
With this "basic" version of the sortable stats now up and automated, I hope to add some additional filtering capabilities - particularly regarding lefty/righty matchup histories. Not sure how soon that will be incorporated, though.
4/14 - The final day of the Masters was devoid of the usual excitement on the back 9. Justin Spieth made a run for the first seven holes, but then Bubba quickly turned a 2-stroke deficit into a 2-stroke lead and from then on, there was never really much drama. Disappointing.
Congrats to the GuruGolf team medalists for the Masters:
4/9 - Today’s blurb is coming to you from the re-crowned college basketball capital of the world (i.e., Connecticut). Who says history doesn’t repeat? For the second time since 2004, UConn sits atop both the men’s and women’s college basketball heap. The two teams are now 13-0 in championship games. That’s an astonishing stat. If you assume each game is a coin flip, the odds of going 13-for-13 is 0.012%. Now, in some of those years, the women’s team was probably much better than a 50-50 proposition. But even if the women were 80-20 favorites each year (and some years they clearly were not), the 13/13 odds only rise to 0.84%. Go figure!
The Masters golf toon-a-ment tees off tomorrow morning. Get your GuruGolf foursomes set! Remember that prizes are awarded to the top GuruGolf team in both best ball and worst ball scoring for the Masters. So even if you haven’t participated yet this season, why not register and pick up a foursome? You could score a sleeve or two of coveted RotoGuru logo golf balls!
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I’ve made some significant progress in retooling my baseball stats processing. The stats now cover all six of the affiliated daily contest sites listed above, and are now updated automatically early each morning. While the sortable stats are not yet available for 2014, I do have the following pages/reports ready:
4/8 - Apparently, defense can win basketball championships as well as football. Kentucky managed to score only 54, their lowest point total of the season.
Kudos to jasonfhall, who repeated as the Market Madness Contest champion by 98 points, having not only Connecticut and Kentucky as longs, but also the #7 seeds, the #8 seeds, and the AAC basket. He had only two negative scores on his entire scorecard, both on the long side. He’s also my son – so he doesn’t qualify for the financial prize, which will roll down to the runner-up. The winning score without basket units was by lfrit2. All prize winners will be notified by email in the next week or so.
The best possible score this year would have been G$1701. That’s a high total, with 420 bonus points for UConn (six times 70) and 240 from Kentucky. In addition to the six longs of the final two teams (team, seed basket, and conference basket for each), longs included two #11 seeds (Tennessee and Dayton) plus the #11 seed basket.
4/7 - The NCAA baskbetball championship game is tonight, and the baseball season is now a week old, so what do I talk about today? GuruGolf, of course!
In addition, the first GuruGolf Contest of the season is now completed. The winners of the "March to the Masters" Contest are:
Note that all prizes will be awarded at the end of the season. This will allow me to avoid awarding duplicate prizes to the same manager, while ensuring that every manager receives the best award for which they qualified during the entire season.
I’m still working on baseball stats processing for 2014. I decided to step back and rewrite many of the routines almost from scratch, as much of the stats processing was originally created 15+ years ago. So it’s going to take a few more days to get some 2014 product out there. Patience!
RotoGuru is produced by Dave Hall (a.k.a. the Guru), an avid fantasy sports player. He is not employed by any of the fantasy sports games discussed within this site, and all opinions expressed are solely his own. Questions or comments are welcome, and should be emailed to
RotoGuru is produced by Dave Hall (a.k.a. the Guru), an avid fantasy sports player. He is not employed by any of the fantasy sports games discussed within this site, and all opinions expressed are solely his own. Questions or comments are welcome, and should be emailed toGuru<firstname.lastname@example.org>.
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