Monday, October 02, 2006

Your 2006 Fantasy Baseball Champs

I stole Big Papi with the eighth overall pick (seriously, are there eight better hitters in the league, fantasy-wise, than Ortiz????), nabbed Roy Oswalt on the way back, and took Joe Mauer with my third pick. From there, it was all pitching that won me the 2006 fantasy baseball league. Thanks to all who participated, especially Mike from In George We Trust/Baby Bombers/Pending Pinstripes, who wrote me off at the beginning of August.

Not that anyone cares, but this is how I won the league:

1) PITCHING! I drafted Oswalt and Zito, but beyond them, my pitching was just okay. Jeremy Bonderman was a sleeper, skyrocketing my strikeout totals. My bullpen was in shambles all season, with Huston Street and Derrick Turnbow anchoring the crew. Turnbow worked out for half the season, but nearly killed my playoff chances in July. Scot Shields and Clay Hensley were decent stopgaps, though. I believe Joe Blanton was my only remaining starter from the draft.

Over the course of the season, I was able to expose the lack of knee-jerk reactions by the rest of the league by picking up Bronson Arroyo, Jered Weaver, and Cole Hamels. Combined with Zito, Oswalt, Bonderman, and Blanton, this was probably the best staff in the league, closers be damned.

2) Hitting where it counts. Ortiz was always solid, and Mauer was great from June on. How I got away with Lance Berkman is beyond me, but his 48 homers certainly had something to do with my winning. Another thanks goes to Nick Swisher for rocking, and yet another to David DeJesus for vindicating my decision to keep him through his injury.

Bill Hall and Placido Polanco were great at the beginning, though slipped a bit at the end. Jorge Cantu was a monumental disappointment, as was Jhonny Peralta, who didn't last more than two months. My biggest thanks go to the teams who dropped Hanley Ramirez and Dan Uggla. With an infield of Mauer, Ortiz, Uggla, Ramirez, and Hall, I was pretty set there. The outfield of Swisher, DeJesus, and Berkman worked well, too. I just wish I had a decent utility guy -- Trot Nixon and Kevin Youkilis were worthless in September, and by that time I had already given up on Milton Bradley.

So yeah, this is the first time I've ever won a fantasy baseball league. And, for the record, 1) I didn't make ANY roster moves in April. I didn't even switch out my starting pitchers or sub for off-days. 2) I didn't know the championship went for two weeks, and as such didn't make any roster moves last week. On Monday, I was down 9-1.