Fantasy Baseball Playoffs
The Tigers Alex Presley is an example of a no-name swinging a hot bat. Getty Images

Hard as it may be to believe, the calendar has flipped to September. Before you know it, football and pumpkin spice [insert product that probably does not need pumpkin spice] will be dominating the zeitgeist. More importantly, of course, it’s the final stretch of another fantasy baseball season. Whether you’re entering the playoffs in a head-to-head league or clawing for every last point in a rotisserie or points format, keep these tips in mind as you go for the gold.

 

 

 

Matchups matter

 

With the end of the year bearing down on us, every game takes on added importance. A single gem or meltdown can be the difference between victory and defeat. As such, it’s time to pull out all the stops. Wherever you can find a favorable matchup, exploit it. Grab a no-name swinging a hot bat or a pitcher putting up a bunch of zeroes. Take note of platoon splits. Examine schedules. You’ve put six months of effort into this team, and now isn’t the time to slack off. Just the opposite. Keep your eyes on the prize – you’ll have all the time in the world to manage your fantasy football team in a few weeks.

 

 

 

Don’t overthink it

The corollary to that last point is to avoid getting so bogged down in the minutiae that you can’t see the forest for the trees. The best players will, generally, continue to be the best. The journeyman middle infielder who hit three homers last night most likely isn’t going to keep mashing like he’s Babe Ruth. Churning the bottom of your roster is fine, and might well be advisable, but even high-percentage plays don’t always pan out, to say nothing of the low-percentage ones. You can easily fall into the trap of getting too cute with your roster management. Trust your studs, and supplement the research with the savvy and instincts you’ve developed as a fantasy owner.

 

Tomorrow is another day

It’s easy to get discouraged when you check in on your team and see that every player on the roster decided to have a lousy night. But while time is growing short, as Yogi Berra once said, it ain’t over ‘til it’s over. If there’s still a chance you could pull out a win, even if it’s a long shot, you’re only selling yourself short by giving up or making irrational decisions (i.e., “rage drops”). Resist the urge to cut or bench your best players because they had an ill-timed off night and justify it to yourself as a ruthless necessity. While it may be true that you have to be more aggressive at this point in the season, there’s a difference between aggression and shortsighted action.

Thanks for reading all season. Hopefully, this column was a boon to your efforts. Good luck, and enjoy the rest of the championship chase.

Kyle Bishop is a lead MLB columnist at RotoBaller.com. His articles are your secret weapon for winning fantasy leagues.