In the last couple of seasons, I have used a combination of the previous season's vote totals and the Wins Above Replacement metric to guide both my ballot and the annual blog post. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a screenshot of the vote totals from Season 53 so I am going to use the career high vote totals for those on the ballot to shape my first five candidates. Here is a look at everyone's best vote total to date: 


Let's take a closer look at the top five by vote totals:

1) Harry Espinosa, career high 12 votes = Estimated 61 Career WAR
2) Elian Rojas Jr, career high 11 votes = Estimated 61 Career WAR 
3) James Moore, career high 10 votes = Estimated 67 Career WAR
4) Fritz Walsh, career high 8 votes = Estimated 30 Career WAR
5) Maikel Romano, career high 7 votes = Estimated 62 Career WAR

There have also been a number of names brought up on the world chat, so let's see how those guys stack up as well:

Fred Sparks = Estimated 63 Career WAR
Junior Ethier = Estimated 63 Career WAR
Orber Guerrero = Estimated 119 Career WAR

Based on all of that data, here's my ballot right now: Guerrero, Moore, Sparks, Ethier, Romano



Last season, I mentioned that I found a quick and easy way to calculate Wins Above Replacement for hitters and that it's a good way to easily assess HOF-worthiness. I still believe that, and now that I've calculated some of the totals for guys on the ballot, it is even more true because the process is now faster.

Just like last season, I have saved the voting totals from the previous season via screenshot and have included them below:


As you can see, we got a couple guys in last year using this method after getting just one guy in over the previous two seasons. That leaves the following five guys as the top five vote-getters who fell short of election last year:

1) Pablo Macias, 15 of 16 votes needed last year
t-2) Gregorio Astacio & Don Webster, 13 of 16 votes needed last year
3) David Campos, 12 of 16 votes needed last year
4) Elian Rojas Jr, 8 of 16 votes needed last year
5) Harry Espinosa, 6 of 16 votes needed last year

Here's a quick look at my estimated career WAR totals for those six, and what kind of a chance they have at election as a result:
  • Pablo Macias: 52 career WAR, "I Might Get In" 
  • Gregorio Astacio:  64 career WAR, "I Might Get In"
  • Don Webster: Career Standard Score 50.9, "I Might Get In"
  • David Campos: Career Standard Score 23.3, "I'll Get In Eventually"
  • Elian Rojas Jr: 61 career WAR, "I Might Get In"
  • Harry Espinosa: Career Standard Score 45.0, "I Might Get In"
As of right now, I will be voting for everyone listed above except for Macias. However, I am going to take a closer look at the ballot and will update this page if/when I have more information to present. Until then I hope this helps!

***EDIT: Campos is not on the ballot this season, so I will replace him with Macias on my initial round of votes***

The World Chat conversation so far this season has also brought up the following names:

  • James Moore, 67 career WAR, "I Might Get In" 
  • Otis Gold, 25 career WAR, "Field of {Pipe} Dreams"
  • Glen Lowell, 43 career WAR, "Praying For A Miracle"
  • Fred Sparks, Career Standard Score 20.3, "I Might Get In"
At this point, I'm looking over the list of candidates and not seeing anyone on the ballot whose case is stronger than "I Might Get In"...which could very easily be a first in all of my seasons writing HOF blog posts across my various worlds. That being said, I think we should still try to elect as many guys as possible who "might get in." This would be the perfect year for it!
As has become tradition, I am going to take a quick look at each of the candidates for the end of season awards and see who stands above the rest in terms of Wins Above Replacement. Each year, I choose the top player by WAR for each award as the guy that I support, and I hope it helps aid your voting as well as providing a bit of entertainment during the playoffs...which are either stressful if you're participating and (potentially) boring if you are not. As always, I'm happy to discuss my methods with you via Trade Chat or Sitemail, but don't want to bore those of you who just want to see results and aren't overly concerned with the process. Here's how the S52 awards break down:

AL MVP

  • Antonio Frandsen (DH-Ottawa), 9.91 WAR
  • Preston Workman (3B-Buffalo), 6.30 WAR
  • Angelys Santos (1B-Syracuse), 6.53 WAR
  • Luther Stowers (LF-Pawtucket), 8.75 WAR
  • Juan Carlos Lugo (1B-Tacoma), 8.31 WAR
NL MVP
  • Enny Cayones (1B-Scranton), 8.33 WAR
  • Lewis Hatley (SS-Scranton), 7.09 WAR
  • Nigel Sugawara (RF-Salt Lake), 6.57 WAR
  • Odalis Marmol (RF-Tampa Bay), 7.73 WAR
  • Randy Pose (2B-Scranton), 5.68 WAR
AL Cy Young
  • Jhoulys Sosa (SP-Little Rock), 3.81 WAR
  • Fernando Javier (SP-Helena), 3.59 WAR
  • Cy Medina (RP-San Juan), -0.39 WAR
  • Stefen Haase (RP-Toledo), 1.06 WAR
  • Kip Ratliff (RP-Hartford), 0.28 WAR 
NL Cy Young
  • Xander Cruz (SP-St. Louis), 4.31 WAR
  • Miller Ray (SP-Scranton), 5.71 WAR
  • Dan Sweeney (SP-Scranton), 3.99 WAR
  • Edward Coomer (SP-Montgomery), 6.47 WAR
  • Enrique Lee (SP-Scranton), 3.44 WAR
AL Rookie of the Year
  • Antonio Frandsen (DH-Ottawa), 9.91 WAR
  • Nyjer Haney (SP-San Juan), 1.01 WAR
  • Tarrik Crawford (SP-Tacoma), 2.55 WAR
  • Dummy Daniels (DH-Milwaukee), 4.05 WAR
  • Kike Solarte (2B-Nashville), 2.31 WAR
NL Rookie of the Year
  • Joey Hurst (SS-Columbus), 3.66 WAR
  • Howie Yarbrough (RP-Charlotte), 4.54 WAR
  • Richard Wanatabe (1B-Montgomery), 2.85 WAR
  • Sammy Urrutia (RP-Louisville), 0.08 WAR
  • Henderson Rathjen (2B-Columbus), 2.79 WAR
For the past few seasons, I have used the previous year's voting results as a guide for my HOF ballot. This season I will continue that trend, but I am going to use a different metric to evaluate the top options in terms of HOF worthiness. Previously, I have used the Career Standard Score (a Bill James invention) which does a nice job. However, I use Wins Above Replacement for other blog posts and it's more easily understood than some of Bill James' other creations so I figured that I should use it for this if possible.

Last night, I discovered a Runs Created calculator that I can plug the career numbers of the hitters into and then convert from Runs Created to WAR quite easily. I also have access to a WAR calculator for pitchers, but putting career numbers into that gives me wacky results. Neither will method will match the more precise method that I have used for other blog posts exactly, but it is much easier for full careers and will be a good indicator of HOF-worthiness. Without further ado, here's a look at last years results and a WAR-centered rundown of the top candidates this season.


Above are the results from last season's voting...nobody made the cut, but there were certainly a number of deserving candidates:

Pablo Macias: 62.10 offensive WAR, -10.25 defensive WAR = 51.85 total WAR
Pinky Curtis: not on ballot this season
Maikel Romano: 53.70 offensive WAR, 1.70 defensive WAR = 55.40 total WAR
Don Webster: 1.95 defensive WAR, Career Standard Score 50.9
Midre Tarasco: 0.77 defensive WAR, Career Standard Score 45.6
David Campos: 0.85 defensive WAR, Career Standard Score 23.3

Now that I have some WAR data to work with, we need to look at how the players on the ballot stack up against the current competition. Here is a look at the names brought up on World Chat:

Yogi Gray: 54.00 offensive WAR, -1.08 defensive WAR = 52.92 total WAR
Raul Chantres: 61.50 offensive WAR, -22.98 defensive WAR = 38.52 total WAR
Gregorio Astacio: 50.90 offensive WAR, 13.57 defensive WAR = 64.47 total WAR
Elian Rojas Jr. : 45.90 offensive WAR, 14.96 defensive WAR = 60.86 total WAR
Fred Sparks: -0.74 defensive WAR, Career Standard Score 20.9

Last but not least, let's compare all of the candidates to those guys who have already made the cut. Using the metrics I've been tracking above, here's a look at the position-by-position averages for current Plumpy HOF members:

--> Average Hall of Fame 1B = 88.88 WAR
--> Average Hall of Fame 3B = 55.49 WAR
--> Average Hall of Fame RF = 70.52 WAR
--> Average SP Career Standard Score = 52.5
--> Average RP Career Standard Score = 22.1

Based on those averages, the following players are above "Hall of Fame average" and definitely deserve to be inducted:
  • David Campos
As of right now, the rest of the field stacks up as follows in terms of WAR:
  • Gregorio Astacio (64.47)
  • Elian Rojas Jr (60.47)
  • Maikel Romano (55.40)
  • Yogi Gray (52.92)
  • Pablo Macias (51.85)
  • Alexi Franco (41.90)
  • Raul Chantres (38.52)
  • Guy Gorzelanny (35.96)
  • Rod DeJean (28.74)
  • Otto Dillon (28.20)
  • Mariano Infante (-3.33)
***MORE WILL BE ADDED TO THIS LIST IF THEY COME UP ON WORLD CHAT AND/OR I HAVE TIME TO DO THE MATH!
Since this world and one that I commish (Around The Horn) are on exactly the same schedule, I'm quite a bit later in posting my annual look at the awards ballot using WAR totals. If people are interested, I think my next project is going to be one of two things: a draft review using advanced metrics like WAR, or an investigation into career WAR. For now, though, here's what this season's ballot looks like:

AL MVP

  • Jose Cedeno (DH-Houston), 8.33 WAR
  • Dayton Tanner (RF-Syracuse), 6.84 WAR
  • Preston Workman (3B-Buffalo), 4.95 WAR
  • Juan Carlos Lugo (1B-Tacoma), 6.15 WAR
  • Orlando Rienzo (RF-Ottawa), 5.55 WAR
NL MVP
  • Julio Gonzales (C-Scranton), 6.25 WAR
  • Randy Pose (2B-Scranton), 6.83 WAR
  • Odalis Marmol (RF-Tampa Bay), 6.26 WAR
  • Nigel Sugawara (3B-Salt Lake City), 5.97 WAR
  • Enny Cayones (LF-Scranton), 8.63 WAR
AL Cy Young
  • Oswaldo Bravo (SP-Helena), 5.49 WAR
  • Patrick Yarnall (SP-Buffalo), 3.53 WAR
  • Bruce Cosart (SP-Helena), 5.71 WAR
  • Didi Sanchez (RP-San Juan), 0.94 WAR
  • Kip Ratliff (RP-Hartliff), 0.87 WAR
NL Cy Young
  • Quinton Strickland (SP-Montgomery), 6.07 WAR
  • Yasiel Arias (SP-Scranton), 5.64 WAR
  • Chick Paredes (SP-Anaheim), 5.02 WAR
  • Brandon Peters (SP-Toronto), 4.76 WAR
  • Edward Coomer (SP-Montgomery), 3.47 WAR
AL Rookie of the Year
  • Cy Medina (RP-San Juan), -0.88 WAR
  • Charles Rua (LF-Syracuse), 3.78 WAR
  • Mike Snyder (LF-Toledo), 5.15 WAR
  • Lars Oberacker (CF-Chicago, AL), 4.95 WAR
  • Louie Jose (P-Milwaukee), 2.31 WAR
NL Rookie of the Year
  • Peter Brow (SP-St. Louis), 2.65 WAR
  • JC Franklin (3B-Montgomery), 3.75 WAR
  • JP Mercado (3B-Cleveland), 5.09 WAR
  • Jerry Bennett (RP-San Francisco), 0.91 WAR
  • Ray Corcoran (SP-Vancouver), 1.33 WAR
This is a bit later than I typically post this, but I finally have some time to go through the end of season awards ballot to evaluate each of the candidates using Wins Above Replacement. These figures are park-adjusted, and the pitcher's totals are also based on the Fielding Independent Pitching statistic (as well as batting prowess-or lack thereof- where appropriate), so I've long felt these are the best representation of individual performance that are (somewhat) easily derived from the information provided to us by WIS. Here's how this year's ballot breaks down:

AL MVP

  • Luther Stowers (LF-New York), 11.39 WAR 
  • Jose Cedeno (DH-Atlanta), 7.78 WAR
  • Chip Kinsler (3B-Buffalo), 7.79 WAR
  • Peter Reininger (3B-Atlanta), 4.42 WAR
  • Orlando Rienzo (RF-Ottawa), 6.05 WAR
NL MVP
  • Lewis Hatley (SS-Scranton),  8.03 WAR
  • Livan Guerrero (RF-Anaheim), 5.97 WAR
  • Enny Cayones (LF-Scranton), 8.36 WAR
  • Randy Pose (2B-Scranton), 5.83 WAR
  • Odalis Marmol (RF-Tampa Bay), 7.88 WAR
AL Cy Young
  • David Giavotella (SP-Atlanta), 4.57 WAR
  • Jhoulys Sosa (SP-Atlanta), 4.53 WAR
  • Tsuyoshi Suh (SP-Buffalo), 4.95 WAR
  • Kip Ratliff (RP-Hartford), 0.81 WAR
  • Victor Olmedo (SP, Chicago-AL), 4.30 WAR
NL Cy Young
  • Ryan Ingram (SP-Anaheim), 4.45 WAR
  • Yasiel Arias (SP-Scranton), 3.52 WAR
  • Chick Prades (SP-Anaheim), 3.31 WAR
  • Xander Cruz (St. Louis), 4.33 WAR
  • Miller Ray (SP-Scranton), 4.54 WAR
AL Rookie of the Year
  • Pat Brasier (1B-Nashville), 3.78 WAR
  • Rubi Altuve (C, Chicago-AL), 2.52 WAR
  • Shunsuke Matsui (RF-Atlanta), 2.43 WAR
  • Herman Palmer (1B-Milwaukee), 5.48 WAR
  • Ellis Vettleson (RF-Milwaukee), 3.76 WAR
NL Rookie of the Year
  • Chick Prades (SP-Anaheim), 3.31 WAR
  • Victor Bennett (SP-Jackson), 1.55 WAR
  • Yean Carlos Manzanillo (RP-Tampa Bay), 0.08 WAR
  • Fernando Astacio (SP-San Francisco), 1.24 WAR
  • Calvin Krol (LF-St. Louis), 2.48 WAR

Season 50

Last season, we got three very deserving candidates into the Hall of Fame, although there are still quite a few other deserving candidates left to go. Below is a look at the voting results from last season: 
Looking at that list, let’s take a look at the “next five up” to see if the top five non-elected vote getters from last season are worthy of getting in this season: 

Player
Career Standard Score
HOF Worthiness
Pablo Macias
63.90 points as RF
“Eventual Hall of Famer”
Desi Pena
56.90 points as RF
“Eventual Hall of Famer”
Don Webster
50.90 points as SP
“Eventual Hall of Famer”
Midre Tarasco
45.60 points as SP
“Eventual Hall of Famer”
Ringo Oliver
25.80 points as RP
“Eventual Hall of Famer”

Since all of those guys are HOF-worthy, that makes this year’s voting easy and this post quite short☺
Much like I have for the past couple of seasons, I am going to provide the WAR totals for each of the nominees in the various award categories along with a little bit of commentary explaining who I voted for and why. Thanks also to Brian (raidersfan91sc) for the assist in putting the data together...without further ado, your S49 Awards Races:

AL MVP

  • Del Kondou (3B-Salem), 8.29 WAR
  • Donn Oliver (1B-Texas), 9.72 WAR
  • Tsuyoshi Lo (1B-Buffalo), 8.45 WAR
  • Lenn Posey (DH-New York), 7.83 WAR
  • Luther Stowers (LF-New York), 8.34 WAR
I can totally understand the support Kondou has been getting on the World Chat...putting up 8+ WAR in your age 33 season is certainly impressive...but I have to go with Oliver who is more than a full win clear of any of the other four and who contributed nearly 2 full WAR of defense this season. 

NL MVP
  • Christopher Perry (2B-Montgomery), 6.47 WAR
  • Cesar Cairo (3B-Jacksonville), 8.57 WAR
  • Enny Cayones (LF-Scranton), 7.47 WAR
  • Valerio Suarez (2B-Anaheim), 5.42 WAR
  • Odalis Marmol (RF-Tampa Bay), 7.17 WAR
This is another fairly easy choice, with the WAR leader being over a full win ahead of the next guy. I was a little bit surprised (and a bit disappointed) to see Suarez's name on this list, though, since I let him walk before the year started and then struggled to find a replacement...here's hoping that I hit on the picks I got for him. 

AL Cy Young
  • Adam Maybin (SP-Syracuse), 4.53 WAR
  • Kip Ratliff (RP-Hartford), 0.69 WAR
  • Orber Guerrero (SP-Atlanta), 3.71 WAR
  • Jhoulys Sosa (SP-Atlanta), 4.48 WAR
  • Maicer Silva (SP-Tacoma), 2.97 WAR
Even though I've got a horse in this race, I won't be voting for him...this is a two horse race between Maybin and Sosa. I'm giving the edge to Maybin since he hasn't had as much help as Sosa did (evidenced by the fact that Sosa's teammate is also nominated.)

NL Cy Young
  • Juan Escuela (SP-Toronto), 2.92 WAR
  • Nigel Maybin (SP-Jacksonville), 3.88 WAR
  • Shelby Jorgensen (SP-Tampa Bay), 2.39 WAR
  • Clarence Roache (SP-Louisville), 2.91 WAR
  • Yasiel Arias (SP-Montgomery), 3.96 WAR
These WAR totals all include hitting ability, or lack thereof, so if you're thinking they they seem a little low that's probably why. The good thing is that they're all more or less equally bad at the plate so for the purposes of comparison the above totals will do just fine. 

AL Rookie of the Year
  • Dixon Gibson (SP-Helena), 2.56 WAR
  • Tim Burks (1B-Nashville), 3.07 WAR
  • Orlando Rienzo (1B-Ottawa), 5.24 WAR
  • Roger Diamond (RF-Tacoma), 2.12 WAR
  • Derrin Plunk (DH-Chicago), 2.51 WAR
Once again, I find myself voting for someone other than my guy simply because the leading candidate is so far out in front of the field. Rienzo's season ended up being more than 2 wins better than any of the other four candidates who finished the season on the ballot. This is just about as easy as they come in terms of voting decisions. 

NL Rookie of the Year
  • York Bonds (LF-Scranton), 6.17 WAR
  • Kendry Osuna (SP-Scranton), 3.94 WAR
  • Mac Zhang (LF-Toronto), 5.77 WAR
  • Julian Kelly (2B-Charlotte), 4.87 WAR
  • Sean Leathersich (LF-Montgomery), 5.52 WAR 
Right now I'm guessing that Zhang and Leathersich are both wishing they were AL players since they clearly had better rookie years than any of the AL nominees and yet will likely come up short in the NL. That's because York Bonds put up a WAR total that is superior to Suarez's total that got him nominated for the NL MVP. 
Each season, some of the best individual performances are recorded and highlighted by the WIS engine...but they get erased at the end of the year so I figured this would be a good place to keep a longer term record of those. Also, I have recently determined a way in which we can figure out once and for all who had the best individual performance of the season. Keeping records here also allows us to make cross-season references (starting in Season 49, since that's when this idea occurred to me.)

To evaluate each hitting performance, I am going to use a slightly modified version of the "ESPN Rating" which is essentially a Game Score for hitters that ESPN came up with. It is traditionally scored in the following manner:
  • Baseline score of 59
  • +1 point per hit
  • +1 point per run scored
  • +0.25 points per walk
  • +1 point for each Total Base
  • +0.25 points per steal
  • -0.25 points per caught stealing attempt
  • +0.25 points per Sac Fly
  • +0.25 points per Sac Hit 
  • +1 point per RBI
  • -0.25 points per strikeout
  • -0.25 point per non-productive out
This doesn't account for defense whatsoever, and in my humble opinion having a great game in the field on top of a great day at the plate is what really identifies the best of the best. At the same time, having a great day at the plate can be somewhat dampened by a miscue or two in the field. To that end, I've decided to add a defensive portion to the ESPN rating, which will consist of the following categories and point values: 
  • +0.25 points per putout
  • +0.25 points per infield assist
  • +0.50 points per outfield assist
  • -1 point per error
  • -0.25 points per passed ball
  • +0.25 points per runner caught stealing (by catcher)
  • +1 point per "plus" play
  • -1 point per "minus" play
For pitchers, I'm going to use Bill James' Game Score, which is calculated using the following criteria:
  • Baseline score of 50
  • +1 point per out recorded
  • +2 points per inning pitched after the 4th 
  • +1 point per strikeout
  • -2 points per hit allowed
  • -4 points per earned run allowed
  • -2 points per unearned run allowed
  • -1 point per walk allowed
Looking at this season's Noteworthy Games, all but one are hitting performances through the first 121 games of the regular season. Here's a quick breakdown of each of them (for reference, the best score-batting only-in MLB so far this season is 86.5 by Josh Bell in his 3 HR game on July 1st):

Stretch Kramer drives in 7 runs 
  • At the plate: 3-for-4, 3 R, 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI = 81 batting total
  • In the field: no contributions = 81 overall total
Dickie Moore drives in 7 runs 
  • At the plate: 3-for-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI = 79 batting total 
  • In the field: 6 putouts, 1 assist, 1 runner caught stealing = +2 fielding points = 81 overall total 
Nipsey Henley drives in 7 runs
  • At the plate: 5-for-6, 2 R, 2B, HR, 7 RBI = 81 batting total
  • In the field: no contributions = 81 overall total
Trevor Tatis drives in 7 runs 
  • At the plate: 2-for-3, 2 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI, Sac Fly = 77.25 batting total
  • In the field: 3 putouts & 4 assists = +1.75 fielding points = 80 overall total
Al Gonzales drives in 7 runs 
  • At the plate: 4-for-6, R, HR, 7 RBI = 76 batting total
  • In the field: 7 putouts = +1.75 fielding points = 77.75 overall total
Osvaldo Lee drives in 8 runs 
  • At the plate: 5-for-5, 3 R, 2 HR, 8 RBI = 86 batting total
  • In the field: 7 putouts = +1.75 fielding points = 87.75 overall total 
Pedro Villafuerte drives in 8 runs
  • At the plate: 2-for-4, 2 R, 2B, HR, 8 RBI, BB = 75.25 batting total
  • In the field: 9 putouts = +2.25 fielding points = 77.5 overall total
Danny Hatfield drives in 7 runs
  • At the plate: 3-for-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI, BB, K = 79 batting total
  • In the field: 3 putouts = +0.75 fielding points = 79.75 overall total
Christopher Perry drives in 7 runs
  • At the plate: 4-for-5, 2 R, 2 HR, 7 RBI = 81 batting total
  • In the field: 2 putouts, 4 assists = +1.5 fielding points = 82.5 overall total
Evan Todd Hits For Cycle
  • At the plate: 4-for-6, 2 R, 2B, 3B, HR, 3 RBI, K = 75.75 batting total
  • In the field: 3 putouts = +0.75 fielding points = 76.5 overall total
York Bonds drives in 7 runs
  • At the plate: 3-for-4, 3 R, 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI = 81 batting total
  • In the field: 2 putouts = +0.50 fielding points = 81.5 overall total

Victor DeRojas drives in 7 runs
  • At the plate: 2-for-4, 2 R, 2B, HR, 7 RBI, HBP = 74.25 batting total
  • In the field: 2 putouts, 1 error = -0.50 fielding points = 73.75 overall total
Justin Whitman drives in 8 runs 
  • At the plate: 3-for-5, R, HR, 8 RBI, Sac Fly = 76.25 batting total 
  • In the field: 1 putout = +0.25 fielding points = 76.5 overall total 
My previous post regarding impartial trade evaluations was based on a Draft Value Chart that originated in the football universe, so it was admittedly a little bit flawed. However, thanks to FanGraphs Audio podcast Effectively Wild and the associated Facebook group, I have recently stumbled upon the website Baseball Trade Values. In addition to being super fun to mess around with on the subject of MLB hypotheticals, it also provides a nice model of how to assess trades here in Hardball Dynasty.

For those of you who didn't click the link above, here's the most important portion of the article that they've written explaining how they calculate a player's trade value: "On the surface, calculating trade value is relatively simple: Field value – salary = surplus ...What do we mean by 'field value'? (By the way, that’s our term. We don’t know if anyone else uses it.) It’s an estimate of how much that player is worth on the field."  

They then go onto explain that they take the following items into consideration when calculating "field value":

1) Dollars-Per-WAR. They explain that they've figured out that MLB teams pay roughly $9M per WAR in Free Agency and use that as their baseline in calculations. However, in Hardball Dynasty, the maximum amount you can pay a Free Agent is $30M per season and the high end of the WAR spectrum is typically around 10 WAR in a given season, so here in HBD it would be more like $3M per WAR. 

2) Projections. They use projections based on advanced models such as the ones on FanGraphs, which are likely more advanced than the system that I use. However, I do have a method for estimating a player's WAR value in Hardball Dynasty, so that's what I'll use for the projections in this system.

3) Inflation. Thanks to the constant $185M budget, this is not something we need to account for here.

4) Years of Control. This is pretty straight forward, with the exception of guys on rookie contracts. For those players, the idea is that they'd get arbitrated if their projected WAR is bigger than zero...but if it's negative, they'd get released and are considered under control up until the end of their rookie deal and not beyond. The dollars-per-WAR and projections generate a one-year total, so that total simply gets multiplied by the number of years left on a guys contract to estimate a total WAR projection for the player.

5) Injury Risk. They aren't very specific about how they mathamatically account for injuries in their formula, but lucky for us HBD has a health rating. I have added in an "injury multiplier" that is directly tied to the player's health rating.  The total WAR projection from the years of controlled would be multiplied by this number.

6) Roster Risk. In their words "players who are out of options carry what we call roster risk, which is a negative adjustment to their field value. We apply a discount for players with that status. (Note that this is only true of players who are marginal – typically somewhere just above replacement value; stars or above-average regulars don’t have this risk.)" For the purposes of this exercise, I am going to apply this penalty to players who project to have single season WAR totals between 0 and 2 overall.

After those totals have been calculated, to find the "surplus value" you simply subtract the total amount of money the player is owed over the course of the contract from the total value that the formula produces. For minor leaguers, it's a somewhat simpler formula in that the years of control are eliminated (since there's no guarantee they'll make the majors.) Here's a look at the deal that I analyzed before using this new method:

To Louisville: Jared File ; Lance Williams
To Toronto: Pascual Arias ; $5M

Jared File: -3.91 projected WAR, 73 health rating, maximum roster risk (for negative value), position bonus for playing catcher = -7.71 "surplus" trade value

Lance Williams: 0.24 projected WAR, 85 health rating, medium roster risk, no position bonus = 0.81 surplus trade value

Pascual Arias: -3.93 projected WAR, 58 health rating, maximum roster risk, no position bonus = -11.79 "surplus" trade value

$5M cash: In a system that's evaluated in cash value, cash comes at face value = 5.00 surplus trade value

IN TOTAL:  Louisville -7.71 + 0.81 = -6.90 "surplus" trade value // Toronto: -11.79 +  5.00 = -6.79 "surplus" trade value

Since there aren't any major leaguers in that (fair) deal above, I've decided to publish my evaluation of a trade offer from Milwaukee to me (Tacoma) to illustrate how that works:

To Milwaukee: John Tabaka, Khiry Russ, Nelson Olson
To Tacoma: Junior Ford, Dillon Corey

John Tabaka: -1.35 projected WAR, 82 health, maximum roster risk, no position bonus = -4.68 "surplus" trade value

Khiry Russ: 1.85 projected WAR, 2.5 years of control, 81 health rating, medium roster risk = 5.73 trade value - 1.081 million owed over rookie contract = 4.649 surplus trade value

Nelson Olson: -2.92 projected WAR, 45 health, maximum roster risk, no position bonus = -8.10 "surplus" trade value 

Junior Ford: 3.24 projected WAR, 48 health, 1.5 years of control, no roster risk = 7.83 trade value - 9.9 million owed over next 1.5 seasons = -2.07 "surplus" trade value

Dillon Corey: -2.81 projected WAR, 49 health, maximum roster risk, position bonus for playing SS = -0.84 "surplus" trade value

IN TOTAL: Tacoma -2.07 - 0.84 = -2.91 "surplus" trade value // Milwaukee  -4.68 + 4.649 -8.10 = -8.131 "surplus" trade value