To quote the great Roy Orbison, “It’s over.”
I’ve unofficially given up on my team in the Official Message Pitch Fantasy Baseball League for this season. Yeah, I know it’s Week 2. It doesn’t matter. We’re garbage. We’re not even hot garbage, either.
I should have known how it was going to go when I didn’t recognize half the names I saw in ESPN’s top 25 player rankings. I guess I’ve been following my favorite team so intensely, I failed to pay attention to rest of the league. I don’t even know who half the players on my fantasy team are.
To give you some idea, I drafted Ozzie Albies third or fourth because I got him confused with Ronald Ocuna. They could not be further from each other at the plate. Ocuna hits balls from Gwinnett County to actual Atlanta. Albies hits like Matt in slow pitch softball after Margarita Night: it ain’t pretty, and if he does make contact you just hope he can beat the throw.
I haven’t played with any consistency in probably eight years or more. But, like everything else they seem to do these days, ESPN has found a way to ruin fantasy baseball too. It used to be so much fun. You draft one player for each position, plus some reserves, and enough for a starting rotation and relief. There were five offensive statistics, and five pitching statistics. You do better than your opponent in a statistic for the week, you win that category, and if you won the majority of the categories, you won the week. It was simple, fun, and easy to keep up with.
Now? There’s every position, plus “slash” positions like 1B/3B and a whole lot more. You don’t play categories, either. You gather points. That’s a whole lot of fun too. Also, did you know that your players can get negative points? Yep, that’s right, if you’ve got a player that hacks at the plate like Pedro Cerrano or the jerk prospect from “Trouble With the Curve” and K’s up, you get negative points. And we get a LOT of negative points.
I played a team last week whose name is literally IDK What I’m Doing. Dude has never played fantasy baseball before, and he’s handing me a bigger L than the Pirates’ entire last two decades. It’s embarrassing. I feel like the owner of the Tigers in For Love of the Game: The game has passed me by and I don’t enjoy it. And much like the Tigers’ current owner, I feel like I’m in for a long, long season.