I am really hoping all the mock drafting I have been doing will pay off.
That is because the bulk of Mastersball are doing one kind of NFBC draft or another.
I used to like to go to Vegas for the main event there, but with travelling to New York for Tout Wars, and Phoenix for LABR, not to mention I usually hit the "What Happens Here..." town in January for the FSTA convention, it is just a little too much.
But, the last couple of years Lord Zola has signed me up for the Slow NFBC draft which I really like. Not to say the drafts are that slow. In fact, my experience is that my leaguemates get beyond antsy if we are not on top of every pick every time. Or so it seems.
Which seems to run smack in the face of the definition of slow.
Anyway, I like this draft a lot because it is draft and follow; that is, we each draft 50 players and that is it.
No FAAB. No trading. No nothing. Just what we walk away from the table with from draft day till the playoffs.
One of the things I learned last year was that believe it or not, 50 guys is not enough. (My proof of this is I drafted 22 pitchers and thanks to injuries I could not fill out a rotation with nine though most of my guys were in the Majors.)
I did wind up drafting third last year, and Albert Pujols fell to me, yet I had second thoughts about grabbing him. Not that I don't like the guy, or he has not been the Gibraltar of players performance-wise over the past decade.
For one thing, I had that Zen feeling that maybe this would be the year he struggled. Plus, it is really true that as often as not the first round players don't deliver as we expect them to.
Plus, well, I have to confess that I did not realize I was contrary when I was little. I thought I just had convictions. But, with age, and I hope a little experience I see--and know--I have my stubborn side. Not only that, but I also have an "in your face" side. Oh maybe it has tempered again some, with age.
It does, however, make me always want to find a way to win that no one else has thought of, which I understand is in a way arrogant (as if I am so smart and such an original thinker). It is also folly for a lot more often my schemes fail--often in epic fashion--than they do succeed. And, as they say, the surest sign of insanity is continuing to repeat the same mistakes, even if the players I pick are different..
However, sometimes the schemes do win, and win big, so it is not like there is no chance of vindication out there.
Which brings me to NFBC League #2202, where I drew the #1 pick in a draft that began last night.
It is either Miguel Cabrera or Ryan Braun, with some people giving Mike Trout a maybe (not I, not that I don't like the guy, but I would like to see one more good season out of him before I totally succumb).
Truth is, Matt Kemp kept rolling around in my head.
Yeah, he was hurt last year, but only once of the last five years has Kemp logged less that 650 at-bats, and that was last year. Not to mention his career mean over 162 games is .295-27-95 with 28 swipes and an .853 OPS.
Still, Miggy is so hard to argue with. As is Braun, save that little nag surrounding "what if he gets suspended."
So, I had the first pick on the draft which started around 5 PM Pacific Time Friday, an hour where I am usually waking up from a nap (will someone explain to me why when you are five years old you are pissed when you have to take your nap, and when you are 50 you are pissed when you miss your nap?)
So, I popped Miggy into the top of my Q and turned on autodraft.
Except I actually did not complete the technical function of moving Cabrera into my selection queue before I turned autodraft on, so that around 4:20 my first pick popped onto the draft board using the ADP from the NFBC site: Ryan Braun.
Truth is I am kind of OK with it, because whether I like it or not there is a bit of risk involved with Braun, and I understand in order to be successful in fantasy ball you have to take a risk or two. They just have to be smart risks, and usually we don't know how our relative judgment in this works until at least a few months into the season.
It is, however, enough risk to make me feel good about the pick.
As Todd said, "I think you will be fine."