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Deep leagues vs. Shallow Leagues

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Deep leagues vs. Shallow Leagues

Postby smelson » Mon Jun 07, 2004 9:10 pm

I know a lot of people think deep leagues (12-16 teams) are a lot more competitive and fun and require more skill than shallow leagues (5-8 teams) do. But I found an interesting article that argues for the shallow league side...thought maybe you guys would be interested in it.

Fantasy baseball is a fun game. It builds ego, makes us feel like a part of the game, and keeps college friends together. And there's a battle line drawn between the people that play in shallow leagues versus deep leagues.

At most discussion boards it goes like this:

"Shallow leagues are no fun. They're so easy. Every team's an All-Star team."

"Shutup. You're an elitist prick. I'll kick your ass in a shallow league."

I think both arguments are correct, to a certain extent, and both sound really lame, too.

Fantasy baseball is a zero-sum game. By definition, there will be one winner, one second-place finisher, and one big loser. Whether your team is "good" or "bad" depends on how your team finishes compared to the other teams. Just because a team has a lot of All-Stars doesn't make it a good team. Calling a player an All-Star means that he's good compared to other major league baseball players. If MLB contracted down to 6 teams, would Rafael Furcal be an All-Star anymore? No, he'd be replacement level talent.

Just because a "good" player is available on the waiver wire doesn't mean he's going to help a team in a shallow league. My metaphor is this: if you pick up a $100 bill, that's great. Except if everyone else is picking up $500 bills. The absolute skill of Rafael Furcal doesn't change depending on the size of the league. It's his relative value that changes. Hell, if the league expanded to 30 teams, Neifi Perez might be league-average. As it is, he's extremely replaceable to MLB teams, but is still better than 99.99% of the world population.

In some respects, it's harder to succeed in shallower leagues. The difference between one All-Star and another is hard to predict.
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Postby LCBOY » Mon Jun 07, 2004 9:13 pm

You make some interesting points. It comes down to who "All-Stars" perform better.
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Postby Bloody Nipples » Mon Jun 07, 2004 9:21 pm

thats what I have thought ever since joining a shallow 6 team league. I said it would be harder than a 12 team league cause we would think our teams were stacked and didnt need improving, but all the teams would be stacked in the same way, so certain teams really would need improving. The hard part would come when trying to figure out if Alou was a good enough 5th outfielder, or if Vazquez was a good enough 3rd starter.
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Postby Tavish » Mon Jun 07, 2004 9:26 pm

The ability of other owners definitely contributes more to a competitive league, but a deep league has alot of challenges that shallow leagues do not. Owners have to be much more on top of the league to pick up hot players, fill in for injuries, etc. When there isn't All-Stars sitting on the wire it is abit more difficult to fill in when things go wrong.

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