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Thursday 27th Jul 2017

I do not like the term post-mortem, but I must admit that it conveys an accurate picture. The 2016 MLB regular season is over. It is behind us. It is dead. I will be wearing black and gray for a few days. Any thoughts about it now are indeed post-mortem.

My 2016 season was not as successful as last year, although of my six leagues, I was competitive in five. I bombed only in one, where my weekly lineups ended up illegal on several occasions due to some inexplicable mental block. Illegal lineups do not accumulate points. But rather than whine to the commissioner, I chose to grin and bear it.

So, what have I learned this year other than that it pays to whine to the commish? Two things that I will do differently in 2017 are player selection and maximum value adjustment. Let me explain.

I chose different players for my six leagues for fear that a few injuries could decimate my teams all at once. It turns out that the first team I picked was my best. It was downhill from there. Six leagues, all with different players, diluted my attention and energy a bit too much. It was not a major issue, but I will correct it next year anyway.

The other issue, my sticking firmly to a maximum bid amount during the auction, affected my team’s overall performance and proved to be a clear mistake. Granted, we know that it is essential to have a good understanding of the value of each of the hundreds of major league players. Without it, we could run the risk of paying too much. But there is a caveat. This issue applies particularly to deep leagues and for positions that generally do not have high turnover rates during the season, like corner infield. The CI position has always been a difficult one to forecast because it could be used for Utility/DH.

I stuck to my guns and decided not to overpay. It seems reasonable, doesn’t it? Problems arise when everyone else overpays. Since we all start with the same budget, overpaying for one position simply means that there will be less money elsewhere. On-the-fly readjustments of our initial plans are essential. Feel the auction, act accordingly. I did not. I waited for sanity to come back. A big mistake. As more CI’s went off the table, the inflation kicked in.

What’s one to do? In my opinion, when five or six players of a given position go for more than their projected value, it is time to roll with the punches, bite the bullet and get the next guy. Do not wait. I did and ended with pathetically weak CI’s, which ruined my hitting in general and the HR category in particular.

Follow Pasko on Twitter @varnica123. His essays about sports in ancient Roman times can be found at SportsInAntiquity.com

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