It's early in the season so you think your fantasy baseball team shows promise. You're convinced this year will be a series of small triumphs followed by a big one. But it's a long season and you're going to get tired. There will be a day in August when you're somewhere warm without an Internet connection and that feeling washes over you: It's 7PM and you forgot to set your lineup. The only way to avoid that is to plan ahead.
Our fathers – those guys who ruined fortunes worth of cards by sticking them in their bike spokes – monitored box scores in newspapers to make daily roster changes and still managed to start guys who had been sent back to Triple A. Fortunately, that sort of time-consuming floundering is no longer a given. Send your future self a gift: Automate your fantasy baseball lineup. Done? Great, now you can enjoy your spring and summer without having to call the commission and ask him to let you start Clayton Kershaw because "the West Coast games haven't started yet."
This is what you can do today to guarantee yourself a little peace of mind later on.
Sites like FanDuel, which pits owners against each other in single-day competitions with same-day drafts, provide the newest way to get into (and out of) managing fantasy sports teams. Here's the value proposition: You'll no longer have to wait an entire week to see if you beat your friends. These are salary-cap style games, which means you have, for example, 200,000 virtual dollars to spend on your team. Do you go with two or three stars and hope they come through with huge games while filling out your roster with part-time starters, or do you try to pick the perfect mix of average players who will get hot while they're on your squad? Either way, you know if you've won or lost by the time the day's final pitch is thrown.
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