This article is part of our The Z Files series.
While the record-setting home run pace continues to dominate the headlines, the dearth of steals is just as relevant with respect to fantasy baseball. Due to the stolen base category being more tightly bunched, it doesn't require as many bags to gain rotisserie points. In addition, the top teams are likely within range, whereas in previous years they were so far ahead it wasn't an efficient use of resources to try and chase them down.
Of course, the caveat is there are fewer sources of stolen bases, especially those capable of making a significant difference. In addition, with more runs scored via the long ball, homers have even more of an influence on the runs and RBI category.
As always, it comes down to your team's position in each category and balancing the points available in steals versus those possibly lost chasing them. Today, we're going to present information to assist in your approach towards steals for the remainder of the season.
Based on research I conducted a few years ago for our friends at BaseballHQ, teams tend to attempt steals in accordance with their success rate. That is, teams with a high success rate run more, while those getting caught often decrease the frequency of their attempts. The correlation isn't usually overwhelming, but it's sufficient to help find teams to target and avoid. That said, with the paucity of pilfers this season, the data is even more variable since one player can have an even greater impact.