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August 25, 2014

Fantasy Freestyle

Weak Links

by Mike Gianella


If you are a veteran fantasy player like I am, chances are good that you participate in leagues with strong competition. I have played in “easy” leagues in the past, and while on some level it is fun to watch a powerhouse team roll over the competition, it isn’t very challenging and after a while becomes staid and boring. I’d rather beat strong players as opposed to simply rolling over a group of chumps that is already looking ahead to fantasy football in early August.

While playing against excellent competition is the fantasy baseball ideal, sometimes a “bad” player or two does slip through the cracks and make it into a competitive league. One bad apple won’t necessarily destroy a league, but can have anywhere from a mild to moderate impact on the quality of the league depending on the nature of why the player is weak.

For your sake, I hope that nothing outlined below has happened to your league, but I suspect that many of these circumstances sound way too familiar:

Too Timid To Trade
Of all of the signs of a weak player, this is typically at or near the top of the list. In many cases, this doesn’t even necessarily signify a poor player. In leagues with active trading, I have frequently waited to pull the trigger on a deal to get an idea of what the market is like. This is particularly true in carryover leagues, where the value of a Javier Baez could differ significantly depending upon the market perception.

Eventually, early conservatism should be replaced by a willingness to deal. Some fantasy players are more liberal wheeler-dealers than others, but this isn’t what I mean. No, this applies to the player who simply buys or drafts his team in March and then refuses to even consider a deal. When you reach out to him to make a trade, you get a terse no or no response.

These players aren’t necessarily harmful to the league, but they do take some of the fun out of playing. I don’t expect everyone I play with to make a significant amount of trades every year, but I like to at least have the ability to have a dialogue with every player in the league. It is demoralizing to know that there is one player in your league who simply won’t do anything regardless of how fair your trade offers are.

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3 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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RussHaigis

We are going through a similar situation in one of my leagues. We already had to let one manager go due to a few of the scenarios listed in the article. We also have a 2nd on the chopping block but it's difficult since he is one of the more active managers, but finished last every single year.

Aug 25, 2014 09:17 AM
rating: 0
 
Guillaume de Machaut

I was expecting a different description underneath the "Major A--hole" section. The only owner I've ever had to oust in the league I commission is the one who was a trash-talking heel in the draft (all eight hours of a 12-team 40-man auction ordeal, no less). Racism, sexism, and homophobia were all part of his tirade. Naturally when we booted him he complained to the website owner and threatened legal action. (Of course, it was all smoke and he ended up doing precisely nothing.) It was a nightmare scenario and surely the exception to the rule, but little monsters like that do exist.

Aug 25, 2014 14:59 PM
rating: 0
 
sldetckl16

No racism, sexism, or homophobic sentiment in a fantasy league? Are you Canadian?

Aug 25, 2014 19:10 PM
rating: 0
 
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