The Cynic
A cynical spin on the news.
Wednesday, August 02, 2006

My Sports Guy column

Funny little site here, warning it will take an 30-45 minutes to fill out properly. Bill Simmons, nice guy, but a bigger con artist to pop culture than Ryan Seacrest.

Anyway, here's my Sports Guy column:

So I'm sitting there the other day watching ESPN2 and I see that Melky
Cabrera had a great game. There is nobody, with the possible exception of John
McNamara, that I dislike more than Melky Cabrera. In the pantheon of people that
'Make the Sports Guy pissed,' these two are a heartbreaker.

The phone rings. It's my friend Bish. Rad! Bish is always willing to
discuss our mutual distaste for Melky Cabrera. Don't get me wrong--we respect
his abilities. But he's the Rachel from Friends of sports. Totally annoying, yet
on TV all the time. Bish mentions that it would be nice if Melky Cabrera caught
a case of Tuberculosis at the beginning of September, opening a Mack Strong on
Androstenedione-sized hole for the Red Sox to cruise to the playoffs.

Bish points out that the chances that Melky Cabrera will come down with
Tuberculosis in September are minimal, but that if we expanded the
possibilities, there would be a greater chance for debilitation of some sort. As
usual, Bish is a crazy genius.

Here is what we came up with:
4. Melky Cabrera receives a vicious
Piledriver from David Ortiz in front of 40,000 fans jammed into Fleet Center.

(On a side note, has there ever been a greater moment in sports than when
When Paul Orndorff turned and piledrived Hulk Hogan? That and when When Clubber
Lang told Adrian to get with a real man are the winners of the 'Most Rad
Non-Real-Life Sports Moment Competition 2006.')

3. Melky Cabrera is informed by his wife that their child was not fathered
by him but rather by either Braden Looper or Steve Phillips.

2. Melky Cabrera hangs a homemade collage featuring scrabook-style
clippings of Noah Hunter and Dutch in his locker. He is immediately placed on
the DL with 'flu-like symptoms.'

1. Melky Cabrera meets Diem from Fresh Meat, falls in love, and leaves team
to begin filming 'My Fair Yankee.'

After we finish with the conversation about Melky Cabrera we turn ourselves
to the real topic of conversation, the upcoming draft of the Bonnie Berstein is
Sexy Memorial Baseball Association, a new fantasy league that Bish and I will be
joining this year.

Ordinarily, I'm never an advocate of partnering up to own a fantasy
baseball team. That's like getting picked up by Tyra Banks and going back to her
place, only to find out that Evander Holyfield is already there. If the best you
get is to share, sometimes it's not worth it at all, right?
However, this
league only had one slot open, so Bish and I agreed to partner up, in the hope
that one of us could switch over and manage the next vacancy. After much debate,
and eliminating the excellent possibilities of 'Naked Chutes and Ladders with
Pickled Eggs' and 'Gilbert Brown's Shiny Hooker as potential team names, we
settle on 'The Simmons Simmonians.'

The thing that's exciting about this league is that it is an auction format
league, which is totally different than a draft league. I mean, it seems as
though it would be the same as a draft league, but it's not. It's like the
difference between NHL '93 and NHL '94-you take out fighting and add one-timers,
you've got a whole different game, even if they are both hockey. Any good sports
fan knows that A-Rod is the best player in baseball, but not everyone knows how
to conduct an auction.

Pre-Auction preparation is important. First, it is important to choose a
date when the auction will take place. This is easy. Choose the date when the
whipped guy in the league does not have to Shop, and that's your date. Finding
the whipped-guy-can-make-it date is a crucial part of auction success. (Speaking
of which, what is with all these girlfriends who think that 'fantasy draft' is
code for 'I'm going to have my buddies over to watch Gerry Cooney perform
Scorpions while Spooning?' Don't they realize we'd rather play fantasy baseball?
Though that would be cool.)

Next, and more difficult, is the auction location selection. Many times
people will choose to have auctions in Strip Club. This is a bad idea. Nothing
good can come of this; every person in the room is going to be angry and have an
extremely sore arm after four hours. No, the auction must be held in someone's
house-best furnished basement wins. The coolness of the wife/significant other
can be a deciding factor if two people have similar options-say, if owner A has
a Donkey Kong arcade game, but owner B has a case of Red Dog. Nothing will kill
a fun evening faster than the host's wife emasculating him with a 'I am not
happy right now' face. We have selected next Tuesday night, at 8 pm, at a
guy's house where his wife will be at a slumber party, and therefore unable
to disrupt the festivities.

I will not be sharing with you my player ratings for this coming
season-after all, Annie Duke doesn't play poker with the hand face up-but I will
give you some insight into my auction strategy. The thing is, an auction has so
much more of an influence on your season than a draft does. In an auction, every
player in the league is at your disposal. Everyone starts out equal. It's the
liberal of fantasy sports.

It's also like a Marathon. It requires endurance, it requires stamina,
it requires concentration and planning. Without further ado, here is my 'Sports
Guy Auction Strategy Guide':

Round One-stick and move
Once the auction starts, timing and strategy
are much more important than they are in a traditional draft. The first hour or
so of the auction has to be spent feeling out your opponents. Are they
particularly loyal to the Kansas City Royals? Do they have a tendency toward
arrogant? You are looking for weaknesses that you can exploit later on. Store
these like memories.

Here is a good place to test people by chucking out a few names of guys
you'd never want on your team-aging, oft-injured players, like J.D. Drew, or
over-hyped rookies that never panned out, like Bill Pulsipher.

Everyone is going to get some good players at this point, so make sure you
don't overpay and find yourself begging for money like Turtle asking for Vinny
Chase's AMEX Black.


Round Two-Have a Sense of pyschology

In round two, there will be one moment that defines your draft. Things will
be going along smoothly, and all of a sudden you'll get involved in a bidding
war on a player. It's not unlike a big pot in a no-limit hold-em
tournament-you'll have your The Joker-Batman in Batman: The Movie moment, and
you need to decide what to do.

Oftentimes, this will come down to a single dollar, here or there-if you
bid $30 for Darryl Strawberry, you know you'll get him, but you're facing a bid
with the clock ticking. Are you going to be a hero, carried off the field like
Kirk Gibson? Or are you Rich Kotite, skulking off the field into the jeering
history of your team's fans, with only your family still willing to speak with
you.

Now is your moment. Set the tone.

Round Three-Moving Day

Phase three of the draft is moving day, like day three of The Western Open.
You need to shoot a 69. This is where you'll fill out a lot of the players that,
while less hump, make up the core of your team. Do not discount the importance
of moving day. If you wait until the next phase to build the core of your team,
you'll find yourself as lonely as Paris Hilton in a room full of Southern
Baptists.

Moving day is the time to make things happen for your team. This is where
you are going to define the season that you have. If you end up moving day by
taking an accurate mix of future stars, injury-risk players, and Orlando
Cabrera, you'll be okay.

Round Four-The Game of Trivial Pursuit

By the end of the fantasy auction, the endeavor has become excrusiating.
The only thing it can be compared to is a game of Trivial Pursuit, played among
friends. Something that, at the beginning of the day, seemed like such fun, but
by the end of it, is just a group of people banging their heads against the
wall, adamantly trying to finish what they started, the joy of competing against
your friends replaced with a desire to prove that you are The King of All Trivia
and that is that.

In this phase of the auction, you must be careful. This is the 'fuck you,
pay me' moment of the draft. People will be exploding like bombs, screaming
incomprehensible things like Dexter Manley and threatening to curse if they do
not get their way.

Just bite your lip, set your jaw, and try and endure. It's a long season
coming forward.

'You can do it.'

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


About Us

I take the news
and drag the truth out of it.


Previously...

Back on the Block

Sorry I've Been Busy

How to Escape Prison:

Happy 4th!

Sorry Mudge...

Apologies

Meme Through Mudge By Way of Jill

Olbermann Goes for the Gold...

The Spelling Bee

Bad 80s Videos (Eurotrash Edition)



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