Monday, June 3, 2013

This is how you quit fantasy sports

Just for playing
I haven't really posted much about baseball this year. Part of that is that being near the Phillies is kind of crushing any desire to watch the game; short of the probable mirage that is Domonic Brown (he's hitting homers by the bushel and young, but they are all pull jobs and he never walks; the slump/correction is going to be intense) and the meh thrill of tolerable starting pitching, this is just a No Fun Team right now.

My A's are hot, but I don't get to see them very much. The Yankees and Red Sox are both improbably good and soul-crushing, and I've been so wrapped in work and the NBA that the blog hasn't gotten much in the way of baseball. I was planning on getting more into it in June, which is what usually happens; it's not as if there is anything else to watch for the next 2-3 months of Summer Dead Season.

But there's a bigger reason why my fandom is at low ebb. I'm really tired of being in a baseball fantasy league with, well, many of the people that I'm in a league with.

See, my idea of a fantasy league is guys who go to games together, make trade offers rarely and under the idea that there's a clear make both teams better or go all-in or tank for next year decision, and talk trash that makes me laugh. You know, kind of the reason why I host a poker game with guys that are fun to play with, rather than go morosely swap chips at my local casino.

Instead, I have a league with people who stare down advanced statistics Web sites, don't even seem to like or watch baseball, bombard you with trade offers that alternate between pointless and irritating, and pule over rule missteps while immediately jumping to the conclusion that anything that doesn't benefit them is a conspiracy.

It's, um, not fun.

Part of this, of course, is that my team is middling at best; every league is a lot more fun when you are crushing it. But winning any of these leagues is becoming less and less likely, because, well, these people are just better at the game than me. Or, at the very least, more likely to go the extra mile to win.

Today, in a moment of what the hell, I allowed a trade to go through early, rather than let it go to tomorrow. It was my birthday and all, so I was with my family, and wasn't really thinking very hard about the precedent or ramification. One guy just asked me for a favor and, well, OK, fine.

Which of course has led to two players raising a stink, firing off text messages to my cell phone, and whinging that the Integrity of the Game has been challenged.

I'm 44 years old. I need to do this... why?

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