Fantasy Corner: Building For The Playoffs Early In The Season

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If you follow me on Twitter at all, you noticed this week I made an odd recommendation: take a look at Trevor Bauer.

Wait, isn’t he in AAA still?


Then why am I wasting a roster spot on him with no guarantee he’s getting called up in the immediate future?

The playoffs.

Here’s the thing about fantasy baseball that most people never really think about: there’s a difference between having the best team now and the best team at the end of the playoffs.

In my leagues, I am notorious for finishing anywhere from third to sixth in the regular season and then making a run to win the championship in the playoffs. “You’re so lucky!” my friends would cry, but after doing this repeatedly, they finally caught on: my teams weren’t built for a regular season title.

Here’s what I mean: your natural tendency is to drop guys on the disabled list and to avoid guys who aren’t active. They’re not helping you now, so why waste a roster spot on them? But here’s the thing: while folks around your league are dropping their injured players, it’s time to make calculated risks and start thinking about claiming them.

Sure, your team might struggle for a couple weeks with a small handful of guys on your bench who aren’t even playing, but once those guys get healthy, they’ll be far better than anyone you see on the waiver wire now. A guy like Bauer is a perfect example.

While many people aren’t high on him (I am), the second he gets called up he will be the best waiver wire option out there. Why not sacrifice a bench spot for a few days to ensure you beat the rest of your league to him?

For me, the goal is simple: win a playoff championship. No one remembers the regular season champ — it’s the ultimate champion that owns the bragging rights. Now it’s time to build your team like you believe that.


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