Well, here we are, Fantasy Baseball managers! We have culled through all the player profiles, all the advanced sabermetrics, all the injury reports, and all the sleepers and busts in the Jim Bowden Draft Guide. We are ready to ACE our drafts. If you are like me, you have a ton of notes everywhere- chicken scratch on paper, excel spreadsheets, and maybe even a post-it note or two about the newest closers-by-committee. You're in the zone. If you're drafting tonight- you have all the tools you need for success.
Now, let's make sure there are a few things you don't forget before the first pitch on Thursday.
- Don't Forget: FAAB! Most leagues allow one more FAAB run before the season starts. Don't waste the chance to go back and tweak the squad you drafted on March 1.
- Don't Forget: have a multi-positional eligibility player on your squad. This is often a late pick- someone you can count on to help with your counting stats while also giving you the flexibility to cover for injured players or rest slumping ones. I'm talking about a David Fletcher , Tommy La Stella , Ty France , Willi Castro , or, wait for it... Jazz Chisholm. Use your FAAB wisely.
- Don't Forget: leverage your pitchers for the shortened week beginning April 1. Chances are, all of your starters won't be pitching opening weekend. If possible, be sure to throw in some long relievers for some ratio protection or perhaps even a sneaky save. Don't let those slots sit empty.
- Don't Forget: Have a relief pitcher that's got a job or is at least in line for one. Kirby Yates is out. Scott Oberg is out. Jake McGee is in. Jordan Romano could be the guy in Toronto. Reference Howard Bender's color-coded closer chart in the draft guide at Fantasy Alarm.
- Don't Forget: Check for injuries. If you haven't heard, Eloy Jiménez and Luke Voit are out for now. Don't let them accidentally start in your lineups on Thursday.
- Don't Forget: Check for Covid updates. Are all games being played? Who is just getting back from a quarantine that may not be at full strength yet?
- Don't Forget: Double-check all the apps that auto-fill your lineups. Make sure they haven't done something like start a Catcher in your Utility. Catchers are ranked differently because the position is so weak, so this can happen. Don't end up with a Christian Vázquez in your Utility when C.J. Cron is on your bench.
And finally, and most importantly:
Don't Forget- HAVE FUN.
Don't let the details get in the way. Don't fret if you had a bad draft or you forgot one of the above. It's a long season, and winning teams are managed and not just drafted. This is supposed to be fun! Now, sit back, get yourself some Crackerjack, and enjoy that crack of the bat.