Jody Gerut retired this week. Sad day for me. Why? I had -- that is, my roto team...well, let me stop and warn you, first: this is a roto post. You're all invited to stick around, and I hope it's interesting, but there's no regular baseball content here; it's about what it's like to play fantasy baseball long-term (and wondering how typical my experience has been).
OK, back to Jody Geut. He was on my Blue Sox when he had his big year. 22 HRs, 75 RBI, .279 BA. That's back in 2003, when he was a rookie. I don't remember how much the Blue Sox paid him that year, but it wasn't anything close to what he earned. And, if I recall correctly, he didn't clog up my roster for long after that, so there was no down side to go with the good year. For me, even though he went on to a longish career and never showed up on my roster again (we're AL-only, so I was just watching for his Padres revival), he's always been one of "my" guys.
I'm wondering how typical my experience is, however. I know that there are tons of people who play some sort of fantasy baseball, but no idea how many of them are like me -- one team, continuing league, forever (my first league lasted only three years, but my current league has been going on for a long time). My point is that when it comes to baseball, I'm a Giants fan -- but my second team is my Blue Sox, and just as I keep track of, oh, Jason Grilli and David Aardsma's careers even after they're long gone from the Giants, I also tend to be pretty aware of my former Blue Sox. I'm curious whether others have that same sense of things.
Granted, even in a keeper league there's a lot more turnover than there is for a National or American League team. Still, playing only a slightly modified version of the original Rotisserie rules, we get to keep our players (if we want them) for three year chunks, and you can extend their contracts to a fourth or even fifth year...the truth is that it's not all that unusual, at least in our league, for owners to wind up getting back some of their favorites. The longest stretch I've ever had was with Arthur Rhodes, who I had for I think at least a dozen years at the start of his career. But there's plenty of guys I've had for five years, or six out of seven, something like that. Again, since I'm only in the one league, there are also a good number of players who I never had on my team. And it's not as if everyone who passed through my roster is one of "my guys." But a case like Gerut, who I plucked up cheap and then he had his best year...that's one of mine.
Oh, I can't help myself -- my best ever one of those? Pat Listach. Yup, I had his big year -- that would be 54 SBs. Alas, then I was stuck with him, if I recall correctly, for the next two years, but he was cheap, so it wasn't exactly a disaster.
Anyway, if there's anyone left reading who would like to comment, I'd be interested if that's how you think of fantasy baseball (or for that matter other fantasy sports) -- whether you think of yourself having a continuing franchise, with a history, and players who are "your" guys, or whether it's something totally different.