Skip to main content

Most Accurate Fantasy Baseball Experts (2020)

Mar 12, 2021

Something special is right around the corner. We’re about to have a mostly-normal, full length baseball season for the first time in what feels like forever. That means we can get into full prepare-for-fantasy-drafts mode and maybe this time we won’t have the rug pulled out from under us. One of the most important parts of that preparation process is finding the perfect set of rankings to draft from. With such a wide variety of experts and projections, one of our goals at FantasyPros is to make it easy to figure out who’s worth listening to. To that end, we’ve measured the accuracy of last year’s draft rankings for every expert on our platform.

Methodology

If you’re a nerd like me and want to read the full details on how we judge rankings accuracy, you can see the complete methodology here. The short version is as follows:

  1. Find a pool of players that includes players that were hyped in the preseason (even if they disappointed) and who broke out (even if they were fringe at the start of the season), but excludes players that weren’t relevant in fantasy.
  2. Determine the final “actual rankings” at the end of the season by calculating each player’s VORP (Value Over Replacement Player) in a standard 12-team 5×5 categories league.
  3. Interpret each expert’s rankings as predicted VORP, and look at the difference between that and actual VORP to get an “accuracy gap” for each player.
  4. Add together the accuracy gap for each player at each position to get an expert’s score for that position, and then rank experts according to lowest total accuracy gap to see who was most accurate.
  5. For overall accuracy for hitters, pitchers, and the whole player pool, add together the accuracy scores from individual positions.

Overall Expert Accuracy Standings

Now that you know how this works, it’s results time! We had 60 experts publish rankings last year, including 56 who qualified for the overall leaderboard by submitting rankings at every position.

Top Fantasy Baseball Draft Experts
Rank Expert
1 Mick Ciallela – Fantrax
2 Dalton Del Don – Yahoo
3 Pierre Camus – RotoBaller
4 Ryan Amore – Pitcher List
5 Jake Ciely – The Athletic
6 Scott Pianowski – Yahoo
7 Corbin Young – FantasyData
8 Ariel Cohen – Fangraphs
9 Andy Singleton – Expand The Boxscore
10 Dan Harris – FantasyPros

See the full field of experts (60 total) | Combine top experts into consensus rankings

This year’s winner is Mick Ciallela from Fantrax! His impressive performance included ranking in the Top 5 experts at four different positions – C, 3B, SP and RP. He was the only expert to achieve that for more than two positions. He also outpaced our Expert Consensus Rankings at every position except 1B and 2B, where he was extremely close. Ciallela is a true pitching expert – this is his second year in our accuracy competition, and he’s the only expert to rank in the Top 10 at both SP and RP in both of those years.

2020’s most consistent expert was our #2 overall ranker, Dalton Del Don from Yahoo. He finished in the top ten at a whopping five different positions (SS, C, OF, SP and RP), a feat matched by no other expert. He also had the lowest floor of any expert: He finished at #22 at his weakest position (2B) while no other expert ranked better than 26th and their worst position.

If you’d like to see how your favorite expert did, and the breakdown by position, you can see the full accuracy rankings here.

Top Experts By Position

We like to recognize experts who were the very best at each position, even if they didn’t necessarily rank in the Top 10 overall (or didn’t qualify by having rankings at every position).

#1 Experts By Position
Position Expert
C Nick Pollack – Pitcher List
1B Pierre Camus – RotoBaller
2B Max Freeze – Freeze Stats
3B Rudy Gamble – Razzball
SS Scott Pianowski – Yahoo
OF Michael Petropoulos – BRoto Fantasy
SP Grey Albright – Razzball
RP Andy Behrens – Yahoo

 
It’s a good day for Yahoo and Razzball, who each had experts combine to take the top spot at two different positions.

Multi-Year Accuracy

Knowing who had the best 2020 rankings is valuable, but it is just one data point toward answering the question “who’s going to have the best ranking in 2021?” To help with that, we aggregate our accuracy results across multiple years, so you can see who is the most consistently accurate, year-in and year-out. These experts have the track record to prove that they’re worth trusting. You can see the full multi-year accuracy leaderboard, including position ranks, here.

3-Year Draft Accuracy (2018-2020)
Rank Expert
1 Scott Pianowski – Yahoo
2 Jake Ciely – The Athletic
3 Andy Singleton – Expand The Boxscore
4 Nick Mariano – RotoBaller
5 Dalton Del Don – Yahoo
6 Max Freeze – Freeze Stats
7 Dan Harris – FantasyPros
8 Andrew Gould – FantasyPros
9 Tyler Thompson – Fantasy Six Pack
10 Heath Capps – Fake Teams

 

This concludes our 2020 Fantasy Baseball Draft Rankings accuracy study. Congratulations again to Mick Ciallela from Fantrax for being our #1 expert! Happy drafting!

Jacob Herlin is a Senior Data Scientist for FantasyPros. You can find him on twitter @jacoblawherlin.

Follow the Pros!

Follow us on Twitter @FantasyPros for exclusive advice and contests