Friday, July 12, 2013

NL King - Window to Win a Fantasy Championship

Today's article applies to any league one is in be it mixed, NL or AL only. We are hitting that point of the season where we should know in most leagues who are the contenders and which teams are looking towards next season. This article is speaking with the contenders who have a legitimate shot to win their fantasy leagues. I am going to illustrate a few points of why a team should go for the brass ring if your in this position.

- In most competitive leagues a really good owner most likely will only get a chance to win his or hers league every 3 or 4 seasons. I myself have not won my league since 2008 (I have been constantly reminded of this by one particular friend in my league). I feel like each season since then I have done a really good job including this one (and I find myself in last place this year as of today). But other than 1 year since 2008 there was only 1 season where I had a shot to win my league and that faded by mid to late August (finished 2nd that year). So my point being is one only gets a legitimate window to win one's league every so often. When that opportunity arises you have to be smart but aggressive in being a buyer and trading future pieces in trying to win your league.

- There are no guarantees with your future cheap pieces or what next year will hold for your team. One might say " I have these players at such good deals how can I trade them? They are going to be so good for next season at a great price." Is that true and how good are they going to be for next season? But lets say for the sake of argument they will be that good for next season but what if a number of your other pieces that you get wind up failing you. Again Matt Kemp will cost a ton of fantasy owners a championship this season unless he comes off the DL and has a ridiculous August & September. I am sure there are so many owners out there saying if Matt Kemp were to just have given me 3/4 of his projected numbers I would have won my league. It takes a lot of things to come together to win one's league, you have to remember that. So having 3 or 4 or 5 pieces at really good contracts does not guarantee being in contention for a championship next season or even challenging for a money spot. Someone in my keeper league last year had Ryan Braun on the last year of his contract at $11 and he winded up rebuilding.

- In regards to your pieces that you have at really good contracts, ask yourself this what value do they have to be at next season for it to really sting for next year? Also what are the probabilities that such player will be worth that value? So if you have a really good young starting pitcher at $7 at what price would be oh my God I can't believe I traded him last year? To me that player would have to be worth at least $20 for it to really sting. Then if you conclude that it's lets say 50/50 such player reaches that value are you 100% selling the farm for next year? I think this is a good exercise in evaluating talent and value with probabilities what one is giving up for next season.

- If the right deal is on the table then you must go for it. Now very rarely does the perfect deal come along. I am not saying one has to settle if your buyer but if as a buyer you wait for the absolute perfect deal well good chance you will not be adding to your team. However if a smart deal that gives you a strong chance to put you over the top presents itself then you have to go for it.

- The right deal should be based on the categories where you can move up the most and the players you are acquiring are going to on paper make a big impact in these categories. Do not get caught up in acquiring a sexy name. The goal is to acquire key stats to put you over the top.

- Just like I said above there are no guarantees about your keepers or your team for next season, there is also no guarantees that by making a really smart deal in going for it will win you your league. Slumps happen, injuries happen etc etc. In 2008 the last time I won my league I made a couple of big deals where I traded away a number of great keepers and that was the difference in me winning my league. However in 2011 when I finished in 2nd place I gave up Andrew McCutchen who was signed for one more season the 2012 season at $11 in efforts to win my league and I did not even challenge the first place team in September. In both years I feel I made smart trades that impacted the key categories, one time it was a difference maker and one time it wasn't. Although that season by trading McCutchen to improve my team for the stretch run it was the difference between me finishing in 2nd place as opposed to 3rd place.

So all owners who have a chance for the "Precious" I am here to tell you go and try to find that smart deal to put you over the top.

Follow me on Twitter @ TheNLKing

NL King

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