New in 2016 – Fantasy Tigers! Rules & Draft

Have you ever played (or heard of) fantasy baseball? It’s a game played on the cyber-diamond, usually between friends, in which everyone selects a pre-determined number of real-life players, whose real-life statistics then count in the fantasy game. For a better, more detailed explanation, click here.

I have played MLB fantasy baseball every year since 2000, but with my interest in the game finally waning, and my love for the (Hanshin) Tigers taking over, I decided that it would be fun to keep playing fantasy baseball, but using just the Hanshin Tigers roster. As a result, final numbers would not be so gaudy – remember, not everyone is getting playing time! However, we could use the farm team players as well to shore up our rosters. The Hanshin Tigers have 67 players on staff, and that does not count the four development (ikusei) players, who were not draft-eligible in our league.

Anyhow, here is a brief breakdown of the rules, and a chart showing the draft results.

  1. Owners draft players to their team, and these players’ actual 2016 stats will be compiled and count towards each team’s final score. Players who are on the first squad (ichi gun) will have their stats count in full, while players who are on the second squad (ni gun) will have their stats calculated at a 90% rate. Players who jump between the two squads during the season will have their stats count accordingly – games played with the first squad counting in full, games played on the second squad being discounted by 10%.
  2. Each team will consist of 20 players.
  3. Each team must include at least 8 pitchers and 10 fielders.
  4. No team may have more than two foreigners.
  5. Players cannot be “added” or “dropped” but can be traded between owners; however, the above conditions must remain intact.
  6. Injuries and benching happen, and will simply result in lower statistical totals for the owner/team in question.
  7. Categories that will be counted are: Hitters – batting average, runs, home runs, runs batted in, stolen bases. Pitchers – innings pitched, wins, strikeouts, WHIP, and ERA.
  8. The worst total in each category will earn that owner one point; the second-worst total gets two points, and the top-scoring owner gets points. The total will be added up to give your team a final score.
  9. At season’s end, the fantasy owner with the best team (highest point total) will win a prize of Hanshin Tigers merchandise. Shipping cost will be covered by H-TEN in the inaugural season, however, if we continue this in the future, conditions may change.
  10. The draft order will be random —but we will employ a “snake” system, in which the first person to choose in Round 1 will become the last person to choose in Round 2, but then the first to choose in Round 3 again, etc.

Now, the plan was to turn the draft itself into a podcast. Unfortunately, one of the participants could not be with us so we did the entire draft over the phone. Still, just like we do with the regular podcast, we tried to record both ends of the conversation and match it together using some clever mixing. But the result was completely unusable!!! So instead of entertaining you with a witty 50-minute back-and-forth about the logic behind our player choices, here is a list of the players we chose. For your information, I, T-Ray, won the rock-paper-scissors that we did, so I got to choose first.

Round T-Ray Jimbo Zorny
1 1. S. Fujinami 2. R. Messenger 3. S. Takayama
2 6. K. Fukudome 5. M. Hague 4. T. Egoshi
3 7. A. Nohmi 8. M. Iwata 9. K. Fujikawa
4 12. N. Yohkawa 11. T. Toritani 10. Y. Iwasada
5 13. H. Uemoto 14. S. Fukuhara 15. F. Hojoh
6 18. M. Gomez 17. S. Yokota 16. R. Umeno
7 19. S. Iwazaki 20. R. Imanari 21. M. Mateo
8 24. Y. Yokoyama 23. A. Takahashi 22. T. Nishioka
9 25. N. Perez 26. K. Kanoh 27. H. Saiuchi
10 30. F. Araki 29. Y. Andoh 28. Yamato M.
11 31. T. Okazaki 32. S. Komiyama 33. K. Saka
12 36. K. Moriya 35. D. Enokida 34. R. Dolis
13 37. T. Akiyama 38. H. Itoh 39. K. Shibata
14 42. M. Nakatani 41. K. Kaneda 40. K. Takamiya
15 43. H. Shimamoto 44. K. Aoyagi 45. S. Sakamoto
16 48. R. Ogata 47. Y. Morikoshi 46. K. Tsutsui
17 49. R. Arai 50. Y. Itayama 51. N. Tsuru
18 54. A. Iwamoto 53. N. Nishida 52. K. Itoh
19 55. K. Ueda 56. K. Futagami 57. A. Mochizuki
20 60. R. Matsuda 59. T. Shimizu 58. S. Azuhata

There it is. Seven players went unchosen, and I was quite surprised by some of the names: Tsuruoka, Shunsuke, and then some of the new guys.

So the question is… whom do you think has the strongest team? Who will win? I will post the “scores” at the end of play on April 10th… tomorrow! Until then, I leave it to your imaginations! We will update scores on here roughly every other week, or perhaps once a month… depends on how interesting everyone finds it, and how much time we have for updates.

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