A-ha! You thought you were going to come here to MediaFreak and read some expert entry about how to manage your mixed-league, NL-only or head-to-head fantasy baseball team. Alas, that's not what I'm writing about.
I'm simply putting it out there that fantasy baseball and the drafting process is like none other out there—and is a time investment no simple-minded man should partake in. In my league, for example, there is a Sociology Ph.D., an Emmy-winning ESPN producer and a labor lawyer—you know what I am (I hope). This is not child's play; it's an all-out war of wills, minds and baseball lineups, which will consume our lives for the next several months on a daily—yes, I said, daily—basis. After all, unlike most fantasy sports (with the possible exception of basketball), the amount of tinkering one has to do to make a fantasy baseball lineup work on a weekly basis is unbelievable. It's a meticulous process only the most sure-handed of individuals can take part in. Think of fantasy-baseball players like heart surgeons (one false move and, well … you get the point).
And then there's the strategy. Whom should you take in the first round of the draft and if you get the first pick? (Albert Pujols usually goes first, and Hanley "HanRam" Ramirez usually follows.) If you are stuck with the last pick (as my girlfriend's cousin was this year), how should you use that to your advantage? Should you have an auto or live draft (auto means the computer picks your team; live means you're actually online to draft your players)? Whom should you take in the later rounds? Rookies? Pitchers? Closers? Catchers? All or none of the above? It's a real mind-suck if you think about it. And to say that I was good at statistics in high school would be like saying a fish can ride a bicycle. So, I'm already down one major fantasy skill.
But year in and year out, no fail, fantasy baseball—we do our league via Yahoo!, but many others use CBS Sports or ESPN or the scads of other online hosts for their leagues—is something that makes me happy even when the day is sucking hardcore. Maybe it's the secret community aspect of it—or the dream realized of actually "owning" an all-star team. Or maybe it's carried over from my days of baseball-card collecting. Who knows?
Point being, if you're not a fantasy baseballer, you're missing out.
—Posted by Will Levith