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January 12, 2012 posted by Paul Greco

How to Be a Smart Fantasy Baseball Owner

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Jose Reyes brings his speed to the Miami Marlins

This article was originally written by Kevin Orris.

By this time of year, most owners have begun the drafting process and are starting to re-evaluate their team after having some second thoughts.  During the season you will see many articles on various fantasy baseball websites that will tell you to slow down, and don’t blow up your team just a week into the season, much less, before it even starts!

I’ve decided that I’m going to write this article now, and then we can be done with it, because one of the biggest mistakes that beginning fantasy owners make is tampering too much with their teams early on.  I’m here to tell you to sit still and be patient; there’s a reason that you drafted your team the way that you did.

When you draft a team, you try to build a team to win an assortment of categories and your overall goal is to obviously win your league.  Once your draft is over, certain categories tend to be at a premium, in particular saves and stolen bases.

Truth is, once the season is in full swing the overall value of a player isn’t such a huge deal. It is more important to change your team for the better.  If you need power and you have a surplus of speed it doesn’t hurt to trade Jose Reyes for Adrian Gonzalez, for example.  Saves and stolen bases are hot commodities, so be sure to hold onto them.

Back to my main point. Atlanta Braves former GM John Schuerholz always made fans aware that he would wait 40 games before evaluating his team and deciding where he needed to improve, and the same has been passed on to current GM Frank Wren.  I’ve always tried to follow this approach in fantasy baseball as well, however, there are a few exceptions.

Since it is much easier to pick up free agents in a fantasy league, it doesn’t hurt to drop a slumping pitcher that you grabbed with a last round pick and replace him with him with a player who has put up spectacular numbers thus far in the season.

For those of you who have drafted, try to stay put with your current team and don’t make any big trades at this point in time unless you made some serious errors when drafting your squad.  Some owners like to propose big trades to try to acquire an additional first round pick to the Albert Pujols they may already have, and sacrifice multiple middle round selections.

It is wise to stay put and see how your guys actually perform because there is a reason you picked each and every guy; maybe for his speed, or maybe to balance out batting average.

In conclusion, let the season ride a little, at least until we are a month into the season, and then evaluate your team and calculate your needs and wants.  Maybe it will be appropriate for you to trade a speed machine for a slugger who was originally drafted four rounds later, but in the long run, keep your team’s best interests in mind.
How long do you feel you should wait before making adjustments to your team?  What are some of the best free agent pickups that you’ve ever made?

Paul finished the 2011-2012 Fantasy Football season as the #1 Weekly Rankings & Projections winner of the 411Fantasy Expert Challenge. He also finished 2nd in the FantasyPros.com Expert Draft Accuracy Challenge in 2011. Top 10 Finisher in the FSWA Fantasy Football Draft Projections. Paul is also apart of baseballs elite as a member of Tout Wars. You can follow me on Twitter @PaulGreco
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