In last year’s Manifesto, we warned you to stick to fantasy football, to go with your guns, to save yourself from a life of solitude that would almost certainly lead to loss of job, girlfriend, and family. But you didn’t listen, did you? You dipped your toe in at the start, you asked yourself – “Well, I mean, I like fantasy football, why not try baseball?” – and then you signed up and drafted and, like any beginner, you won a few early match-ups that led to this line of thinking: “I’m an expert!” So you set your lineup to “coast” and kicked up your feet with a glass of white Zinfandel and gave yourself a nice pat on the back as if to say, “I’m great…this isn’t so hard…I must’ve been born with one of those special gifts…that’s what I am, I’m gifted.”
Then Buster Posey (the guy you drafted because you took a shining to his name the way a woman takes a liking to a shade of eye-shadow because it matches her purse) shredded his leg like it went through a wood chipper and Josh Tomlin (the player you picked up in early April because you didn’t draft a full pitching staff in March) remembered he wasn’t Bob Feller and your team started to sink like an Italian cruise ship in the Mediterranean: slow and steady.
And you being here, reading this, means one of two things: 1) You jumped ship, leaving your team at the depths and you’re back to prove to yourself that you can handle a full season or 2) You went down with that burdensome mass of a team and you think you can do better this year.
Well, Rotoballers, you can and you will.
Even though those crazy Mayans predicted that 2012 would result in the end of all things, the Rotoballs team will make sure it’s not because of your fantasy team.
Now that we’ve weeded out the weak and are left with those of you who are truly addicted, hooked like a 30-year heroin user, we can get down to business (it’s business time!). Last year was a trial run, for all of us, even the Rotoballs team. We’ve never had to worry about the well-being of other fantasy teams, just our own, and that extra weight on our backs became a little much near the end of the season; I won’t name any names (smuggling plums), but some of us had trouble sleeping and keeping our wits about us. But we’re all a year older, a year wiser, and we’re never, ever going to draft Adam Dunn again (hopefully).
2011 saw the rise of young hitters (Freddie Freeman, Desmond Jennings, Mark Trumbo, etc.), while other hitters decided they’d rather swing and miss (the aforementioned Dunn, Alex Rios, Hanley Ramirez, Jason Heyward, etc.).
We saw the resurgence of pitching along with a new wave of elite closers.
David Freese turned into Superman during the playoffs, and even though his stock is rising, we aren’t buying. Think Bossman Junior Upton circa 2008.
Top-tier catchers basically do not exist anymore.
In the off-season, all the first basemen went to the American League (sorry NL-Only formats). Ryan Braun peed in a cup and supposedly will be suspended for 50 games, but that still doesn’t deter us from salivating over him. I, for one, still have nightly wet dreams about the Hebrew Hammer.
In closing, Rotoballers, it’s time for you to shed your “beginner” nametag, welcome your sophomore year with open arms, and outperform and distance yourself from your previous efforts. When you get the urge to kick your feet up and drink white wine, keep one eye on the waiver wire. When draft day comes and you’re about to draft a player because he has a “cute” name, don’t. In April, when your girlfriend wants to know when you’re going to come back to bed, shut the door in her face. With any hope, she’ll disappear one day.
The Rotoballs Team