Saturday - Jan 23, 2021

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Management 101

No matter what website, you go to you will read about a hundred different ways to build a team, I won’t dispute that. Some will try to convince you they know all of the sleepers you need to know, others will try to convince you they have a mathematical model designed to help you win, and others say they have the perfect strategy. They’re all wrong; and if I said the same, I would be too. I mean, I constructed the below team in a daily rosters salary cap keeper auction in 2011.

C – Joe Mauer

1B – Adrian Gonzalez

2B – Rickie Weeks

SS – Ian Desmond

3B – Pedro Alvarez

CI – Mark Trumbo

MI – Kelly Johnson

OF – Nelson Cruz

OF – Jayson Werth

OF – Jason Heyward

OF – Magglio Ordonez

UTIL – Austin Jackson

SP – Justin Verlander

SP – Tim Lincecum

RP – Joel Hanrahan

RP – Jonathan Broxton

P – Jered Weaver

P – Cole Hamels

P – Chad Billingsley

P – Brandon Lyon

I know, putrid, in fact maybe I just turned off a few readers … but you know what? I took this monstrosity and scratched and clawed my way to second place. Realizing your mistakes before it’s too late and making moves accordingly is critical in this game, and that’s exactly what I did to salvage this team that was in dead last as of May 10, 2011. I also built the below roster in a yearly league, and by midseason I renamed it the juggernaut.

C – Mike Napoli

C – Alex Avila

1B – Miguel Cabrera

2B – Danny Espinosa

SS – Asdrubal Cabrera

3B – Aramis Ramirez

CI – Joey Votto

MI – Neil Walker/Chase Utley

OF – Andrew McCutchen

OF – Nelson Cruz

OF – Adam Jones

OF – Corey Hart

OF – Alex Gordon

UTIL – Coco Crisp

P – Cliff Lee

P – James Shields

P – Daniel Hudson

P – Matt Garza

P – Jordan Zimmermann

P – J.J. Putz

P – Craig Kimbrel

P – Joel Hanrahan

P – John Axford

I know, disgusting. My point? Unlike football, to win at this game you need to be good at everything. Draft prep, player evaluation, in-season waiver moves, everything. You might not nail the draft (like me in League No. 1), but good management in-season can make up the deficit. You may also nail the draft (like I did in League 2), but that team ultimately fell short, too. I ran away with the league points title, but lost a heart breaker in the playoffs. Still, going in I was by far in the best position to win and it’s because of my draft plan. No one is going to hit every player, but if you hit enough of them you will be successful. If you don’t … well, we’ll wait until midseason to go down that road.

During the season I will submit a weekly article designed to do just that. In the meantime, I am going to post a series of articles throughout the month of March to help you in your quest of a title. The two most important facets of fantasy baseball (outside of experience, obviously) are player evaluation and draft/auction strategy. I’ll focus on player evaluation later; after all time is at a premium, so we’ll be dissecting the draft/auction from every angle imaginable this month. Think of this as an investment – you may not get all of the information you need to dominate your draft this year, but you’ll build a solid foundation of knowledge so you can in the future. I promise you’ll come out of the draft with a solid team; maybe not perfect, but solid. We’ll go from there. Next I’ll talk about Round 1.

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