Injuries are a killer
Sometimes you have a strategy and it’s a good idea. Sometimes you take a risk and put all your eggs in one basket. Oh and sometimes your best value player gets crocked and your superstar stinks. A few things happened to put the Belfield Hole-in-Sox in a bad way and comfortably bottom of the Fantasy Baseball League of Ireland for the bulk of the early part of the season.
My decision to press hard on drafting closers has backfired. First Jonathan Broxton, who had been racking up saves at a nice pace, suffered a long-term injury and then Joe Nathan was demoted in Minnesota. Given my starting pitching corps was waiting on Zach Greinke to come back from injury, this left me with pretty awful pitching stats all round.
My problems were compounded by a long term injury suffered by Joe Mauer, who I hung on to for far too long before cutting, and the horrible start to the year of my first round pick, Hanley Ramirez. In short my pitching stank and my batting wasn’t a whole lot better.
Normally coming last would merely be a mark of shame, something to moan about and have my manhood questioned. Okay all of these are pretty bad but I can live with stinking at Fantasy Baseball. It’s not going to emotionally damage me. Unfortunately the league decided to add a bit of spice to proceedings this year. A near unanimous vote, in fact I was the only dissenting voice, decided that whoever finishes last this year will have to buy pizza at the 2012 draft. Phoning in the rest of the year simply wasn’t an option.
Cutting Mauer happened later than it should have but I eventually offloaded him and have two contributing catchers again, which is something even if they aren’t elite. The reputation of Hanley Ramirez ensured he would attract some suitors so when I was offered a bounty of Starlin Castro, a short-stop, reliever Kyle Farnsworth and starting pitcher Roy Oswalt I didn’t blink. The move had to be made but it wasn’t enough to put me back in the fight. That’s where Greinke came in. Most of the starting pitching stats are, realistically, lost for the year so batting is where I will make up some ground. A lot of back-and-forth horse trading with one of the other owners, which at one stage involved six players moving, eventually resulted in a straight swap of Greinke for third baseman Michael Young. The result hasn’t put me back into the race for the title but it has made the pizza race relevant again. I briefly moved up to 10th, second last in the table. At the time of writing I was back on the bottom but within shooting distance of the other potential cellar dwellers. This battle has only just begun.