Fantasy Baseball Tumbling Dice: Playing by the Rules

by Lawr Michaels, on January 29, 2013 @ 09:52:32 PDT


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Baltimore Orioles SP Dylan Bundy
Expanded rosters ... like 'em?

Greetings as we start up another season of Tumbling Dice here with our friends at KFFL.

Though the tenor of this column is generally focused on baseball, as we stumble into the wildness of the Super Bowl Weekend, I thought I would share a great lesson in playing that came up in one of my football leagues this past month, and in a way again in my Strat-O-Matic league a few weeks later.

In the Fantasy Football league "Utter Genius," curated by my friend Michael Duca, the league made a move that had a harsh impact on my team going into 2012.

While in previous years we were able to freeze any two players, for 2012 that number was reduced to just one, which made it tough for my Smith Brothers team with Ray Rice, Cam Newton, and Arian Foster (whom I wound up keeping) all on board in 2011.

Though we all drafted two Quarterbacks - as much to cover the bye week as anything else - I chose to play both my signal callers every week save Week 11, when Russell Wilson, who I picked up on draft day, had a bye.

Still, with Foster, Wes Welker, Marshawn Lynch, the Bears defense and Aaron Hernandez - plus Colin Kaepernick who I grabbed his first week as a starter - The Smith Brothers made the Championships.

The team I played that final week of our season - the San Francisco Megalodons - had three deadly Running Backs in Adrian Peterson, Jamaal Charles, and Trent Richardson, along with Calvin Johnson.

Now I beat the Megalodons the first week of the season, and though my Smith Brothers finished with the best overall record at 10-3, the Megs had the highest point total with 1955 to my third best 1827.

Still, the Megalodons maintained their team was better due to the points, but that last match-up, the big games from Wilson and Lynch as Seattle spanked San Francisco, whose defense the Megalodons had played, led to a championship for me.

As we texted during the end of the game, the Megs owner still maintained his team was better despite my besting him twice, saying my team was lucky.

And, it is true that luck factors, but ultimately it came out that the Megalodon owner hated the two-QB option as he had only used his troika of Running Backs all season. Ultimately sticking to that plan burned him, while exploiting that rule is exactly what pushed me into the league title.

So, cut to a few weeks later, as in the MidWest Strat-O-Matic league we reviewed the league changes for the coming season.

What happened?

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About Lawr Michaels,

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 as a statistician. Fantasy Baseball

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