Fantasy Baseball Round Table: How to fix your last-place team

by Todd Zola, MastersBall.com on May 28, 2014 @ 13:15:29 PDT

 

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OK, it's the end of May and you're in last place in one of the major industry leagues. Not only are you in last place, but you're over 20 points behind the team directly above you in the standings. What do (and don't) you do?

a. nothing

b. let things play out a little longer and re-assess

c. put your entire team on the trading block and shake things up immediately

d. something else 

OF Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Trout no help for Lord Zola

Perry Van Hook

1) Assess all categories - especially counting stats

2) Read Wednesday's Captain's Log on Mastersball

3) Sell High, Buy Low & High but TRADE to the right teams (not contenders unless they are willing to overpay)

4) and most important HAVE SOME FUN

Rob Leibowitz

I play things out. It's not over in May. In Tout we have the thresholds to reach for keeping a full FAAB load the following season, plus the reserve draft order is based on final standings too. Even without those sticks, it's my duty as a member of an industry league to keep it competitive. Even if I don't trade, I would at a minimum pick up players, disable players when necessary and conduct roster maintenance in general. I might even pursue trades, but I would probably avoid trading with the teams that are contenders unless I was offered something I couldn't refuse which would be very unlikely to occur. 

Tim Heaney

You certainly can't sit with your thumb you-know-where. 

Definitely concur with Rob that you have to keep active, at least minimally, with pick-ups, ups/downs, etc. And as both of my fellow knights noted, don't just trade with anyone. Be careful to affect most deliberately, even if it proves futile, the avenues of helping other teams in best position to shake up the top of the standings. Pitch it to others that you can help each other move up together -- you're in that mess together, after all.

It's a fine time to experiment. Sell out to a certain strategy. Buy ultra-low on busts. Punt a column if it's the only way out. If you're first by a mile in a certain category, shift it to another team to disperse your resources. (That becomes easier to do in the second half because, well, time is running out.)

Ryan Carey

There obviously will be no quick fixes at this point, but if you have waited this long for certain struggling players to emerge from their slumber, then you almost have to wait a little longer just to see if the regression pendulum can finally swing your way.  That doesn't mean you shouldn't try and shake up your roster via trades, but putting your whole team on the block likely will send the wrong message and doesn't really help your competitors know what you are looking for or who you are really willing to move. You will need to embrace more risk, and be as proactive as you can on the waiver wire, looking for bargains or maybe stashing some names that could prove useful down the line. Most of all you keep active, making moves, submitting your lineups, etc. and hope that some of you bad luck shifts to your competitors.

Lawr Michaels

Welllll, it is almost June and my underperforming LABR team is almost in last place, 40 points out.

I need:

Mark Trumbo back.

Matt Kemp to get hot (I think he will, for sure, red hot for a month, a la E5).

Will Venable to do something.

Maikel Franco to be called up and have a great second half.

I need a good player to be traded to the NL so I can spend my $100 of FAAB.

If that happens, piece of cake. Right?

Lord Zola ponders his options....

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About Todd Zola, MastersBall.com

Focusing primarily on the science of player valuation and game theory starting in 1997, Todd Zola and Mastersball carved out an important niche in the fantasy industry. In 2006, Todd became the Research Director for fantasybaseball.com, and in 2009, he relaunched Mastersball and is now a managing partner.

Todd competes in Tout Wars and the XFL, and has been a multiple-time league champion in the National Fantasy Baseball Championship. He has been a contributor to the fantasy content at MLB.com and SI.com, is a frequent guest on Sirius/XM and Blog Talk Radio and is an annual speaker at the spring and fall First Pitch Forum symposiums.

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