Murphy's Laws of Fantasy Baseball for Beginners

Torey ZiskaCorrespondent IIApril 20, 2009

For all you fantasy baseball geeks out there (don't be insulted, I view this as a term of endearment), you could rattle off numerous things about fantasy baseball that just drive you insane. For any of you fantasy baseball newbies, I will try to ease you into the pain that fantasy baseball can, and undoubtedly will, bring.

Here are my five Murphy's Laws of Fantasy Baseball:

1. The Single-Day Pickup

Some leagues require you to set your lineup at the beginning of the week, for the entire week. However in some leagues, you can set your lineup on a daily basis. Some prefer this in case of injuries, off days, rain outs, double-headers, etc.

So let's say you're in a league in which you set your lineup each day. Say you need to replace your all-star second baseman because he has an off day. The player you pick up will promptly go 0-for-5 for you.

However, the next day when you no longer need the player you claimed off of waivers because your all-star is playing, be prepared because said player will go 4-for-5 with two jacks, while your all-star second baseman might go 1-for-4.

2. Fantasy Team vs. Your Favorite MLB Team 

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Say you are a Houston Astros fan, it's late in the season, and you're in the playoffs for your fantasy league. You can be sure the one day you absolutely need a win from your ace fantasy pitcher Rich Harden, he will be facing your ‘Stros in a must win game for Houston.

That’s terrible luck. But let’s take it a step further.

You can almost bet that not only will your ace (Harden) get drilled, but the Cubs will make a big comeback, resulting in an awful fantasy line for your starting pitcher, and a loss for your beloved Astros.

Hopefully for you, your wife understands your sports obsession and will stay out of your way for the rest of the evening.

3. Fantasy Trades (Part I)

Making trades in a fantasy league is nearly impossible because it seems as if nobody is willing to trade unless they are getting an edge.

If you trade a struggling player (we’ll use Rockies catcher Chris Iannetta, for example), for a player who is playing way more than he is capable of, (let’s say Dodgers Orlando Hudson) you can be sure that the very day you make the trade, Hudson will go from his current .385 batting averages to his typical .280 batting average, while Iannetta (one of the young blossoming catchers in baseball) will go from his .083 batting average to a .300 batting average with 20 plus home runs.

4. Fantasy Trades (Part II)

Let’s say you are actually able to make a fair trade that involves players having relatively equally solid seasons. You can be sure whatever team you traded with, the players you gave up will have the best week of their career when you have to face them. There is no getting around this one, it will happen every single time.

My only suggestion is that if you're in a league with no trading deadline, only trade with a team once you no longer have to face them. If you might have to face them in the playoffs, then may the fantasy gods be on your side, and not your opponents'.

5. The Epic Collapse on the Final Day of the Week

I cannot be sure if this happens to everyone, or just myself. The fantasy baseball league I participate in starts on Mondays and ends on Sundays. For three straight years now, no matter what players are on my team, my team will be absolutely dismal on Sundays.

You can mark it down: If it’s Sunday, my fantasy team will completely tank. (Thank goodness this doesn’t happen to my football team, or I would never win a game). 

My fifth and final Murphy’s Law for fantasy baseball is this: If for the first six days of a matchup, you are in the lead every day, you can assume the results after the most important day (day seven) will be heavily in your opponent's favor.

(It doesn’t matter whether you go to church or not, your team will still struggle miserably. Believe me, I’ve tried everything.)

There you have it, my five Murphy's Laws of fantasy baseball. In time, I will come out with my Murphy's Laws for fantasy football. I promise you, that list will be longer, and every single item on it will have happened to every single fantasy football player in the world.

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