Dixon just did a terrific job of describing August in fantasy baseball. August is typically the tipping point for fantasy baseball owners. They either drive hard for the end, or pack it in.
This means a few different things.
In head-to-head, it a few different paths to the playoffs for us contending teams:
1. You get a path paved with owners who are studying their fantasy football drafts.
If this is your lucky path then congratulations. BUT make sure you look at your team’s output compared to the other contending teams and see if you have weaknesses that will be exposed. Just because you are winning doesn’t mean you don’t have weaknesses and sometimes an easy path to the playoffs can trick you into missing them. Every Sunday night before bed I like to check out the whole league scoreboard, just make sure I would have been competitive against the playoff bound teams. It is a practice I recommend to all head-to-head players. Dixon has even gone through and figured out our league as if it had been played out as a roto league. It isn’t perfect as people play both leagues differently, but it’s a good barometer and is also pretty fun.
2. You have ALL the other contending teams on your schedule and could potentially miss the playoffs. This happens in fantasy sports and in real sports ALL the time.
First, do not be the owner that cries foul because some owners get the above situation and you got the raw deal with guys that are still trying. The schedules are random and everyone has to face everyone. Just be a stand up owner and try your hardest to make the playoffs and do a better job next season of insuring your team is head and shoulders above the rest.
Second, your fate is still in your hands if you can make the right moves. If you need to stream pitchers, then stream pitchers. If you need extra at bats, find an extra hitter or two in free agency with multiple position eligibility. These versatile guys can help you with up to 20 at bats a week some weeks. Trust me, those all count!
3. You have a mixture of teams left on your docket.
In this case, I would say that the advice from situation two is more pertinent than situation one.
If you are in a roto league, you can view this more of a golf scenario. It is you against the field of numbers and not different players/owners.
For instance, say you are in second place. You are certainly not chasing the team that is in first place; you are chasing points. You need to go to your league standings and view the categories in which you can make up points. It will look something like this:
Now you might think the key to team B taking team A is to attack Runs and RBI first and foremost since that is where Team B is right behind Team A. However sometimes the gap is too BIG to attack for just 1 point.
Pitching is the area he has more area for improvement. Let’s say he trails Team A by 29 runs. It is not likely that he can change out enough players or that his players get so hot and Team A’s get so cold that that point can be his easy, at least not without giving up too much elsewhere. Maybe in ERA he is at 3.639 and he can make up four points by getting below 3.419. It really is MUCH easier than you think. Couple that with WHIP, as he is at 1.224 and three points away is just 1.203 and he has made up seven points.
Then it is just a matter of a few points and he has his chance. This will be made easiest if those owners in front of Team B in ERA and WHIP are busy checking their fantasy football teams. I would strongly advise any of you that need pitching help to read Dixon’s Picks. This week on Monday, two of his three pitchers were MORE than solid. Had Team B picked those 2 guys up (Scott Diamond, Chris Tillman), he might be a couple points closer already!
When it is you against the course as it were, you need to make sure you choose the right club, or category to get you in the right spot to strike.