• Rickt: I am the biggest Cal Jr fan around but one of my good friends played minor l...

About a month ago, Umpbump HQ received a peculiar e-mail. It was from Rudy Gamble, the operator of the fantasy baseball site Razzball.com, challenging us to a duel…

Well, not really a duel per se since it involves ten combatants. It was more of a battle royale, a gauntlet, a “clusterf***”.  Our weapons? The crappiest baseball players you can imagine. Our sword is Jason Marquis, our shield is Cesar Izturis, and Nick Punto is our codpiece.

razzball-point-systemThe idea behind fantasy Razzball is fairly simple. Instead of trying to win, you try your damndest to lose. Every time one of your players does something positive in a game, you have points deducted. However, these players have to play for you to accumulate points. (league scoring info on chart on right) You can’t hide behind the Nick Hundleys and Dane Sardhinas of the world. Instead, you rely on Dusty Baker to keep playing Willy Taveras beyond the point of any good sense. Brilliant.

But it was hard. Very, very, hard. You know that in a regular fantasy league, Hanley Ramirez ought to be atop your wishlist. But who’s the anti-Hanley? I went into the draft this past Saturday afternoon not having a clue as to the answer (Not to mention the fact that I had never used ESPN for fantasy purposes and thus didn’t know how to utilize their draft module. Plus, my laptop has a strategic crack on the screen which obscured key areas of the module. That’s no one’s fault but mine).

Then it hit me. Hey, you don’t lose points for stolen bases! AND you gain points every time someone strikes out! Perhaps this was obvious to the rest of my league mates, but it wasn’t until the clock was ticking down that I knew who I would make my first round selection. Mr. Carlos Gomez.

team-umpbump1I still have no inkling as to whether or not we did right by Razzball on draft day. I’m sure that I made mistakes, I’m sure I relied too much on actual playing time over how crappy they would be.  But here’s what Team Umpbump (I hope we’re changing this name soon…) looks like at the moment (on the left).

Again, I have regrets. I think Casey Blake is a sub-par 3rd baseman, but in retrospect, he’s probably not bad enough. Same with Jorge Cantu. Andy Laroche could break out and I suppose Jeremy Hermida may have too much power for my own good.

On the pitching side, Ian Snell could go either way, but in the 4th round, he was way too much of a reach. I feel good about Jeff Suppan and Nick Blackburn (my darkhorse of crapitude), but Micah Owings could rebound, and Joe Saunders could make a fool out of me by proving that last year was not a fluke.

I’m sure than in a league like this, Umpbump will be messing with the roster quite a bit. After all, players who post terrible numbers get removed from the roster fairly quickly (unless you’re a Royal, for they have no choice).

But we are always open to suggestions. Who would be your first round pick in a league like this, Umpbump readers? Think long and hard…

10 Responses to “Razzball Challenges Umpbump: Be The Least You Can Be”

  1. I might have picked Willy Taveras, because we know he’s going to suck. Gomez obviously has a lot of potential and could surprise a lot of people. Though, I wouldn’t put any money on that.

  2. Paul Moro says:

    Taveras was taken with the fourth overall pick and I had the sixth. So good choice.

  3. Paul Moro says:

    But it should be noted that Taveras struck out 79 times last year. Gomez struck out 142 times and hit 7 HRs for his troubles.

  4. Nick Punto as a codpiece? DO NOT WANT.

  5. You forgot about Brad Ausmus and Adam Everett. Somehow, they always weasel their way onto the roster and into the lineup… And they suck worse than anyone in the big leagues.

    Can you get crap points for manager mistakes? Who would be the razzball skipper?

  6. Paul Moro says:

    Had Adam Everett lasted longer, I would’ve happily taken the guy. Because you’re right. He’s a perfect Razzball player. But personally, I decided to concentrate first and foremost on positions where finding crappy players are harder. So I didn’t end up picking a middle infielder until the 13th round, when I picked up Freddy Sanchez. I waited until the 17th round to get a catcher (Laird) and the 18th for a SS (Aybar). Everett was gone in the 4th round, when, for better or worse, I was going after pitching.

    Ausmus would be a good one, but he’s in LA now backing up Russell Martin who starts like 140 games at catcher each year.

  7. Paul -
    For what it’s worth, I had Carlos Gomez ranked as my #1 pick b/c Gardenhire isn’t afraid to give plenty of ABs to an offensive black hole. I had to settle for Michael Bourn as my #1.

    I think you had a strong draft. Probably could be stronger (weaker?) on the corners but crappy free agents arise with injuries. Although it’s tough to imagine you’ll trump my Ronnie Belliard and Rich Aurilia tandem that I can throw at 1B…

    Oh..fun tidbit. Taveras was the most (least?) valuable hitter last year in Razzball. Bourn was #2. Everett disappointed me last year as he was injured. As did Guzman who started hitting all of a sudden.

    Ah, fun times…

  8. Jerry-NJ says:

    I’ve been in a league like this for the past 3 years – it’s the most fun I’ve ever had in a Fantasy league…

  9. Barry Zito. You could pick up bonus points for the contract.

  10. Sarah Green says:

    Freddy Sanchez in the 13th round! It’s this level of genius that put you at the top of the Umpbump fantasy league for the entire season last year, Paul. I’m just glad we’re on the same side this year.

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