When we dealt Keith Law to the Blue Jays for a player to be named
(hey, J.P., you getting on that?), we lost a key member of our
staff. Oh, Keith was great on economic issues, and a significant contributor to the book, and always good for a batch of
brownies when we had bake sales, but most importantly, he was our fantasy baseball guy. Most of you know Keith wrote "The
Pivot" for ESPN.com, in which he provided fantasy baseball tips.
Me, I’m a Strat-O-Matic player, as are many of the people on staff, including Rany Jazayerli, Chris Kahrl, Greg Spira, and Clay
Davenport. The fantasy game I’ve played the most is probably Scoresheet Baseball (along with Rany, Greg, Gary Huckabay, and Dave
Pease). I’ve mixed in a Yahoo league or two the last couple of years, invited in by one of my best friends. My last straight
roto league was in 1992, while I was a junior at USC. All I really remember is cursing Phil Plantier a lot.
This is a long-winded way of saying that our new Lawless state left us in a bit of a bind when it came to our entry in
Baseball Weekly‘s League of Alternative Baseball Reality, a straight rotisserie league founded by the magazine’s John
Hunt some time back. It’s a league of nominal experts from publications and Web sites and stat services, and Keith had always
represented us well. Now, we would be left with relative roto novices at the helm.
We decided to run the team as a group effort. Chris attended the auction about three weeks ago, making the long trip from
Baltimore to D.C. I’m the day-to-day guy, getting input from Chris and Rany as needed, and handling the nuts and bolts of
transactions. I’ll be pestering the few roto guys we do have on staff to make sure that we’re not making the kinds of decisions
that work in Strat/Scoresheet/real life but look real bad in roto.
So what did Chris end up with? Here’s the Baseball Prospectus team right now. Remember that LABR (National League) is 4×4 roto,
$260 for 24 players, with a six-man reserve list and a $100 Free Agent Acquisition Budget (FAAB).
C: Charles Johnson 12 C: Tom Lampkin 1 1B: Richie Sexson 26 2B: Marcus Giles 13 3B: Craig Counsell 4 SS: D'Angelo Jimenez 10 Corner: Tyler Houston 7 Middle: Jose Ortiz 20 OF: Bobby Abreu 33 OF: Lance Berkman 32 OF: Roosevelt Brown 9 (last player acquired) OF: Kerry Robinson 5 OF: Ruben Mateo 4 Utility: Jason Lane 1 Greg Maddux 26 Roy Oswalt 18 Wade Miller 14 Ruben Quevedo 7 Steve Kline 5 Paul Quantrill 5 Giovanni Carrara 3 Omar Daal 2 Brian Anderson 1 Joey Hamilton 1 Reserve List Jamey Wright, P Kirk Rueter, P Jimmy Anderson, P Tony McKnight, P Ramon Castro, C Ryan Christenson, OF
We’re light on saves, although the hope is that we can find some as the season wears on. Our three-man core of starters should
give us a leg up on wins and a good anchor for our ERA and Ratio. Offensively, we’re deep in the middle infield, but light at
third base and in the outfield, and almost certainly have a steals problem.
I’m taking the group effort one step further now, and soliciting input from the people who read this column. Got ideas?
Suggestions? Kudos? Drop me a line. (Criticism? That goes to firstname.lastname@example.org.) I’m serious about the lack of
straight roto experience, and am looking forward to hearing from those of you who have played the game.
And hey, if we win, that’s thousands of people who are responsible and can e-mail John Hunt and taunt him.
Joe Sheehan is an author of Baseball Prospectus. You can contact him by
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