Fantasy Baseball Tumbling Dice: Pessimistically Optimistic

by Lawr Michaels, MastersBall.com on July 23, 2013 @ 14:07:32 PDT

 


It is pretty much reckoning time: The second half of the 2013 season is upon us, and you should probably have a good feel as to whether your team(s) stand a chance of competing throughout the rest of the year.

Cincinnati Reds SP Tony Cingrani
Reserves coming up

I certainly know I have a couple of teams that are still in that rebuild mode, while my NL LABR team is in second place. I have the most FAAB dollars in the league, and the hitters I drafted are all back and healthy (like Carl Crawford and Logan Morrison). Furthermore, with Tony Cingrani in my minor league wings, it appears that we are in the hunt down the stretch.

On the other hand, my NFBC and AL Tout Wars teams are struggling the mighty struggle.

In Tout, with eight players on the disabled list (well, now six, as I dropped Kevin Youkilis to get a FAAB edge at the deadline, and Jake Peavy has now been activated), my team that romped through the first month of the season seems hopelessly stuck in the middle of the pack.

Getting my principal players (meaning Josh Willingham, Mike Morse, Alex Cobb, and Peavy) back, along with using that FAAB edge to turn into something would help.

In the NFBC, which was "draft and follow," I need -- as I have written till I am blue in the virtual type -- Ryan Zimmerman and Ike Davis to get hot. Just that. However, with the news that my No. 1 pick in the draft, Ryan Braun is done for the year, that hope might be just that: hope. (However, if Zimmerman and Davis do get hot, that will likely push my LABR team into first place.)

The issue, though, is though my LABR squad is only a couple of points back, those NFBC and Tout teams each need to pick up around 35 points each, which means I need to play optimistically.

Conversely, I also have to realize that is a lot of points to make up in around 10 weeks.

The thing is I have had teams that have done it before.

More important, we have seen teams do it in the majors. The Colorado Rockies of 2007, for example, or even the Oakland Athletics of last year, a team that was nowhere close to winning the AL West after the 2012 All-Star break

Meaning unless you have some serious rebuilding to do, keep making the moves you normally would to stay competitive, assuming that you have every chance of winning.

And I write this for a few reasons.

First, no one really likes a quitter, let alone playing in a league against a zombie team.

Second, what better time to try things or experiment with the rules and calculating a new angle than when everything matters and nothing matters? So use the opportunity to pick up points on avenues previously unexplored.

Finally, remember that in the end, the winner is generally the team that is hot at the right time.

This goes for fantasy sports, as well as sports in whatever venue, but the adage is usually true. Meaning if your squad is hot at the right time, while the other teams are cold, strange things can happen.

That is, after all, what happened when the New York Giants beat the then unbeaten New England Patriots in the Super Bowl a few years back.

And you could say the San Francisco Giants, backs against the wall last year thanks to the Cincinnati Reds, got hot at the right time and rode the streak home to a title.

For with baseball -- and games and sports in general -- you just never know.

You can get the Mastersball Top 250 Prospects as part of our Platinum package, with more information at 2013 Mastersball Platinum Package. Mastersball Platinum is the edge that supported four of the top five finishers in the NFBC in 2012. You can get the same insights and analysis that helped Dave Potts with the $100,000 grand prize last year by subscribing to Mastersball at 2013 Mastersball Platinum Package.

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About Lawr Michaels, MastersBall.com

Lawr Michaels has been a player in the fantasy baseball industry since he began writing for John Benson in 1993. He has written for STATS, Inc, was the first fantasy columnist for CBS Sportsline, and has appeared in numerous journals and on websites. In 1996, he founded CREATiVESPORTS, a staple for serious fantasy players, which he merged into Mastersball in 2010.

Over the years, Lawr has participated in a wide variety of playing formats and won numerous titles, including AL Tout Wars crowns in 2001 and 2009. Along with his Mastersball duties, Lawr works for MLB.com as a statistician.

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