I'm already in my eighth year of serving as commissioner of my 'League Of Champions' fantasy baseball league. I've been playing fantasy since steroids were considrered 'in,' meaning I have a good clue on how to run a team and a league. I've also noticed that there is a common thread in relation to managers I invite back every year.
Here is a list of sure bet ways to get invited back into your fantasy baseball league following 2013. Just follow these simple seven commandments:
1. Thou shalt have a logo.
Keep your eyes up here...for now... I know it's hard...It seems small and petty, but if you don't have a team logo, it's probably a sign you don't care much about your team and won't keep up with it during the season. Have a fun logo. I love it when people use original logos or a logo of their favorite team. These logos are also used for our LOC record book. Bonus points if your logo includes Kate Upton.....and you're welcome.
2. Thou shalt pay league dues.
My league is more relaxed with dues, as we don't have a huge pot. I don't force anyone to pay because we've been doing the league for so many years and not everyone wants to gamble, so I'm cool with that. But if you're in a league with a buy-in, be sure to get your money in. Nothing is worse than having everyone offer to pitch in for a pot and/or trophy and ending up with $20 to give out at the end of the season.
3. Thou shalt actively commentate.
Post on message boards and interact with others. No commish wants a team on auto-pilot. If that were the case they would play with a bunch of robots. Make friends with everyone. Heckle and give each other a hard time. The more chatter and talk on the league page (and facebook) the more fun fantasy is. Just don't go too far -- more on that in a second.
4. Thou shalt actually manage your team.
Talk trades with people. Adjust your rosters daily or every other day -- at least -- if you can. If
you can't manage your team that often, talk to the commish and offer him to make adjustments on your behalf. This is a cardinal rule. The minute you give up on your team is the moment the commish will give up on your baseball IQ and trust. Baseball is game that plays ever day; your commish expects you too as well.
5. Thou shalt meet all innings pitched.
If you're league has a minimum innings pitched count, make sure you meet it. If you don't, you're actively trying to lose and the effect can ripple through the league.
6. Thou shalt make your team great.
Seriously, if you finish 100 games out of first place, I might let someone else give a crack at it next year. Just don't suck. And if you do, I'll just give a new manager a shot and give you a crack at it again in two years. Also, notice I didn't say 'last place,' only 100 games out. In other words, I will never not invite someone back for finishing last unless it was obvious they had no idea what they were doing.
7. Thou shalt not be a pain.
Smack talk is great, but as soon as managers start taking it way too seriously and start blazing away derogatory and hurtful comments at one-another, it's time to re-evaluate who I let in the league. (Hopefully this is rare). Be competitive but friendly. You know when you have rapport with someone and when you don't.
Everyone in my league is a personal friend or family member of mine, so basically everyone is super cool. Still, you would be surprised who can't handle the long grind that is the Major League Baseball season.
Good luck in '13. Be careful not to study Kate Upton in the upcoming S.I Swimsuit Issue more than your fantasy projections. Then again, they're both fantasies...right?
Photo Credit: Getty