(If you don’t care about fantasy baseball, you’ll want to do a big scroll here.)
I made the mistake of playing three fantasy baseball leagues in a summer in which I was overwhelmed by work and kept up a busy family, soccer and housework schedule. There’s just no way to keep up when you’re doing all that.
Still, I’m finding myself today trying to figure out where it all went wrong. I started with the best of intentions and made the right moves in ditching a couple of players early (I had Cristian “maybe I’ll break .200” Guzman in two leagues and got rid of him in April in both cases). I also snagged Jon Garland early in his big win streak and got Travis Hafner on two teams.
Everything else just went horribly astray, like Brian Carroll’s shot to seal the game for D.C. United last night.
Here’s the breakdown.
Team 1: 12-team, head-to-head, no keepers: R, HR, RBI, SB, E, AVG, OPS / W, SV, HBP, K, ERA, WHIP
|April 3||Aug. 24|
|C Johnny Estrada||C A.J. Pierzynski|
|2B Tadahito Iguchi (bench)||1B Mike Sweeney|
|OF Alex Sanchez||2B Brian Roberts|
|3B Melvin Mora||3B Melvin Mora|
|SS Cristian Guzman||SS Bill Hall|
|1B/OF Aubrey Huff||1B/OF Aubrey Huff|
|OF Carl Crawford||OF Juan Encarnacion|
|OF Manny Ramirez||OF Jeff Francoeur|
|UT Sean Casey||UT Sean Casey|
|2B Luis Castillo||2B Luis Castillo (bench)|
|OF Coco Crisp (bench)||OF Matt Lawton (bench)|
|RP Chin-hui Tsao (bench)||OF Willy Taveras (bench)|
|SP Jeremy Bonderman||SP Jon Garland|
|SP Woody Williams||SP Bruce Chen|
|SP John Thomson||SP John Thomson|
|SP Barry Zito||SP Barry Zito|
|P Danny Graves||P Brad Penny|
|P Jaret Wright (bench; rotating)||P Jaret Wright (bench; rotating)|
|P John Smoltz||P John Smoltz|
|RP Latroy Hawkins||RP Chris Reitsma|
I made a lot of minor moves along the way, but the big ones were trades. I didn’t trade very well — a couple of these moves were followed by insulting offers from the league’s resident fleecer, so clearly I had become the patsy at the table.
- April: Drop Tsao, Williams and Guzman, pick up Garland, Chen and Jose Valentin (later dropped).
- May 7: Trade Crawford for Hinske and Encarnacion.
- May 22: Trade Crisp and Eric Hinske for Sweeney.
- Aug. 22-23: Trade Ramirez and Bonderman for Penny, Roberts and Francoeur; drop Julio.
Team 2: No keepers, 10-team head-to-head league: R, H, 2B, HR, RBI, SB, A, AVG, OPS / W, SV, K, ERA, WHIP
This one is the most perplexing, though you can see the disappointments in my Opening Day lineup — Thome, Rolen, Patterson and Perez have all been hurt and/or had horrifying runs. This is the league in which someone dropped Melvin Mora after the first week, so that gives you some idea of the panic level of the competition. Still, I dropped Chacin too soon.
I’ve listed ALL my moves just to show how frustrating it’s been.
|April 3||Aug. 24|
|C Johnny Estrada||C Bengie Molina|
|1B Jim Thome||1B Travis Hafner|
|2B Chone Figgins||2B Ron Belliard|
|3B Scott Rolen||3B Eric Chavez|
|SS Miguel Tejada||SS Miguel Tejada|
|IF Chipper Jones||IF Chipper Jones|
|OF Johnny Damon||OF Johnny Damon|
|OF Corey Patterson||OF Brian Giles|
|OF J.D. Drew||OF Jeff Francoeur|
|UT Ken Griffey Jr.||UT Shea Hillenbrand|
|OF Alex Sanchez (bench)||C Brian McCann (bench)|
|no one on DL||C/1B Mike Piazza (DL)|
|SP Chris Carpenter||SP Chris Carpenter|
|SP Oliver Perez||SP Kevin Millwood|
|SP Jake Westbrook||SP Casey Fossum|
|P Greg Maddux||P Greg Maddux|
|P Tim Hudson||P Tim Hudson|
|RP Eddie Guardado||RP Eddie Guardado|
|RP Latroy Hawkins||RP Scot Shields|
|RP Jorge Julio (bench)||RP Brandon Lyon (bench)|
- April 11: Drop Hawkins, add Lyon.
- April 28: Drop Westbrook, add Gustavo Chacin.
- May 6: Add Juan Encarnacion.
- May 14: Drop Encarnacion, add Corey Koskie and Trot Nixon.
- May 18: Drop Figgins, add Bret Boone.
- May 20: Drop Koskie, add Chavez.
- May 28: Drop Drew.
- June 7: Add Rafael Palmeiro.
- June 16-17: Drop Sanchez, Julio, Chacin, Boone and Nixon; add Giles, Mark Redman, Chris Young, Danny Haren and Richie Weeks.
- June 24: Drop Hillenbrand, add Hafner.
- June 28: Drop Perez, add Joe Blanton.
- July 9: Drop Patterson, add Reggie Sanders.
- July 24: Drop Thome, add Milton Bradley.
- July 28: Drop Blanton and Haren, add Shields and Hillenbrand.
- July 29: Drop Weeks, add Belliard.
- Aug. 6: Drop Estrada, Young, Bradley and Redman; add Fossum, Millwood, Piazza and Francoeur.
- Aug. 22-24: Drop Palmeiro, Sanders, Rolen; add McCann (temp replacement for Piazza) and Molina (perm replacement).
Team 3: 16-team keeper league, traditional Roto: R, 2B, HR, RBI, SB, A, AVG, OPS / IP, W, SV, K, ERA, WHIP
|April 3||Aug. 24|
|C Jason Kendall||C Brian McCann|
|1B Sean Casey||1B Richie Sexson|
|2B Alfonso Soriano||2B Ray Durham|
|3B Scott Rolen||3B Bill Mueller|
|SS Cristian Guzman||SS Omar Vizquel|
|IF Aramis Ramirez||IF Jay Gibbons|
|OF Corey Patterson||OF Adam Dunn|
|OF Alex Sanchez||OF Matt Stairs|
|OF Eric Byrnes||OF Matt Lawton|
|OF Brian Jordan||1B Travis Hafner|
|OF Shannon Stewart||OF Shannon Stewart|
|(empty bench spot)||3B Bill Mueller|
|SP Pedro Martinez||SP C.C. Sabathia|
|SP Jon Lieber||SP Jon Lieber|
|SP Brad Penny (DL)||SP Brad Penny|
|RP Dan Kolb||RP Miguel Batista|
|P Rodrigo Lopez||P Rodrigo Lopez|
|P Bronson Arroyo||P Bronson Arroyo|
|P Tim Wakefield||P Tim Wakefield|
|P Jorge Julio||1B Phil Nevin (bench)|
Various fill-ins: 1B Calvin Pickering (last time I listen to the sabermetrics geeks), OF Jason Lane, IF Jorge Cantu, IF/OF John Mabry
- April 12: Drop Guzman, pick up Vizquel
- April 13: Trade Ramirez for Thome
- May 18: Trade Casey and Martinez for Sexson and Batista
- June 24: Trade Soriano and Thome for Dunn and Hafner
Next year, I’m sticking to soccer. Not that I’m doing any better there.