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SnakePit Fantasy Baseball 2015: And they're off!

I hope your fantasy team got off to a good start with last night's opening contest.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Mine finds itself in a 3-0 hole following the Cubs losing (this is my unsurprised face) to the Cardinals, though this is largely because I didn't have any player from either side in action. My opponent went 1-for-8 with a run scored and a stolen-base, hence my trailing in those three categories. While I am prepared to throw my team under a bus at the slightest opportunity - for reasons previously explained, I couldn't make the draft, so it feels strangely like I'm looking after someone else's kid right now - one game into the 2,430 which will make up this major-league season might be just a little too early...

The plus side of fantasy baseball is that it gives you a reason to care about other games. The down side of fantasy baseball is... well, it gives you a reason to care about other games. Which, for a die-hard Diamondbacks fan like myself, feels almost like I'm cheating on the team. At least I only have one player from our rivals in the National League West on my team, and no Dodgers or Giants. But I must confess, my first thought when I heard about the Braves trading Craig Kimbrel to the Padres yesterday was not, "Dammit, we'll have to face Kimbrel in Petco," but "Who's the Atlanta closer now?" Yeah, I picked up Jason Grilli. I'm not proud. Though I liked this take on the trade:

As noted, that's the fun thing: you are now more invested in the sport overall, even if you view transactions through the lens of your own team (and, to a lesser extent, your opponents - I feel a vague pang of sympathy for the poor suckers who drafted Joaquin Benoit, now relegated to a set-up role. Albeit only on a "there but for the grace of god, go I", kinda way). But even that is kinda weird, since you are rooting for individual players, which has never been my way: I have always strongly believed in supporting the team on the front, not the name on the back [your mileage may vary, and that's perfectly fine].

It gets particularly bizarre in a contest like the one I'm currently watching, between the Yankees and Blue Jays, when you have both starting pitchers on your roster, and all of a sudden, a crisply-pitched 1-0 game with both starters working complete games becomes your heart's desire [Of course, this being the AL East and all, such a contest would probably still take close to four hours] Unfortunately, the five-run inning put up by Toronto pretty much nailed all hope of that, my team ERA jumping from zero to 7.20 with one click of the refresh button. My draft stand-in just received a stern message on Facebook, let me assure you. #SmallSampleSizeOverReaction

That last hash-tag is why I more or less refuse to make any changes to my team for the first month based on performance. A sucky month will not turn Paul Goldschmidt into B.J., sorry, "Melvin" Upton [there needs to some law that you cannot change your name after your 30th birthday]. Anyone remember April 2013, when our top three hitters by OPS were Didi Gregorius, Wil Nieves and Jason Kubel? How'd that work out? So, expect me to project an air of assured calm over the next four weeks, while all around me are flailing on the waiver wire. Come May 1st though, the gloves will come off...

Right, back to watching baseball, and trying to figure out whether I should care, how much, and who for...