With the recent phenomena of videos being posted on the interwebz about what certain groups of people say, such as, “Stuff hipsters say” or “Stuff new-age girls say,” I have decided to take it to a whole new level of dorkiness. I have been playing fantasy baseball for well over a decade, from keeper leagues to NL-only leagues and even a dynasty league, which is by far the most life-consuming thing I have ever been a part of and don‘t recommend it at all. Over the years, no matter the league or players, some phrases are staples of every draft. Here are some of the more familiar ones you are sure to recognize.
You will hear this several times during the draft. This term is kind of like the “Aloha” of fantasy baseball because it has so many different meanings. It could mean any of the following:
a. The person was eyeing the guy all offseason and you grabbed him before he did.
b. Thrown out as pity because, up until that point, your draft has been terrible.
c. Used as a tension breaker to kill the silence in the room.
d. It was a good pick.
Is it really a sleeper if every crappy magazine you bring to the draft says the guy is? Or if everyone at the draft exclaims it as you make your selection? Stupid term, for stupid people. I, of course, say this after every selection past the sixth round.
“Is this guy still out there?”
This is often said in the later rounds when the beer starts to kick in as well as the beef sandwiches, because really, if it happens in the first couple of rounds the guy should be falcon kicked down some sort of stairs … like this.
“I played against him in high school.”
No you didn’t. And even if you did, who cares? Odds are he would walk right by you today as if you were invisible. Someone may also say, “I know his brother.” Good for you. This reminds me of the time when a friend of mine was so excited to get Juanita Jordan‘s autograph, Michael‘s ex-wife. It‘s like having Jimmy Sinatra sing at your wedding..
There comes a time in every draft when someone decides to take a closer. Now, one of the top closers may go in the first couple of rounds, which is completely foolish if you ask me, but at about the sixth or seventh round, someone remembers that saves are a category. Once another one is taken off the board, the lemming in us all comes out and the following ten picks are all closers. This will happen in your draft, because we are all idiots and can’t be left out of the cool crowd.
“I had him next.”
This is said to make the person saying it look more impressive to everyone else for his obvious knowledge of the players involved in fantasy land. When I say this, I mean it, and once had to be restrained by six guys for attacking the guy who stole my pick with a jagged bottle of Pabst Blue Ribbon. Don’t take my next pick.
Boom, boom, boom-boom-boom. The most overused term in every draft, and in sports in general. I want to punch my own eyes out every time I hear this. Derek Jeter is overrated though; I mean c’mon, let’s be real.
“I had him last year.”
If the player had a breakout year, this person is letting you know that he was fully responsible for it. If the player sucked, he is forewarning you.
“I punt that category.”
Usually said about saves or steals and is meant to intimidate the other players with strategy. What it really means is that the person screwed up their draft and missed out on these categories. You don’t punt a category people.
“I got that category locked up.”
“Anyone got a DL list?”
This is usually followed by, “Is this current? I need a current one!” Or, “Is it bad? How long is he out for?” Come prepared ladies and gentlemen, because if you ask me, Victor Martinez has a slight ankle sprain this year.
Sometimes a draft occurs a day or two after the season starts. My brother and I once drafted Benny Agbayani late in the draft because he hit a grand slam on opening day. He didn’t last long on our team but that homer and four RBI actually helped us finish in the money. Whatever it takes folks.
“He is not the starter.”
This is said out of jealousy when a person drafts another player’s backup. In 1925, a guy in my league kept a fellow named Wally Pip. He was coming off a 1924 season in which he hit .295, with 114 RBI and a league leading 19 triples. I drafted a 22 year old named Lou Gehrig on a whim in the last round. He was my sleeper pick.
“He‘ll be up by May”
Said when a player reaches for a prospect who isn’t quite ready to play in the big leagues. May turns into June, which turns into July, which then turns into spring training the following year.
“He’s good for 20 homers.”
This is not a compliment about the player you just selected. It means that the player has no speed, can’t hit and only offers a slight possibility of producing around 20 home runs. This was said every time Pat Burrell was drafted in my league.
“Who’s taking Strasburg first round?”
Every year, the comedic genius in the room will open the draft with this gem. Every year it is a different player, usually a player coming off a major injury. This year it is Stephen Strasburg, and yes, someone will take him in the first round. And it will probably be the guy who asked the question.
“I don’t care anymore!”
The person who screwed up their draft so bad or didn’t build up their body in the off-season to endure the eight hours of sitting on their ass, drinking beer and stuffing their face with fried foods. Either way, the pressure mounts to the point where they throw their hands up in disgust and ask the other players to just make their picks for them. This person usually wins the league.
And now for an added bonus. Aside from all that you will hear, these are things you are sure to see at your draft.
The guy who comes too prepared
The guy with the Trapper Keeper full of notes, 17 magazines, a laptop and a table all to himself way in the back so no one can look over his shoulder. He is usually quiet the entire draft and is also standing at the board ready to make his pick before the guy in front of him has made his yet. He might be wearing some sort of suit as well.
The guy who drafts someone already taken
This person will take 10 minutes scanning the board and still end up writing down the name of a player who is already drafted.
The guy who drafts an injured player, out for the year
“Too bad, you wrote it down already!” I have no mercy.
The guy who drafts his favorite team
The guy with 14 Cleveland Indians on his roster and somehow finishes in the money.
The guy who wears a jersey with his team’s name on the back
It is almost always number 69, and it is always, always a douche bag.
The guy who drafts all pitching
He’s got that category locked up.
The guy who drafts all speed
This one, too.
The guy drafts all power
My favorite guy at the draft. Similar to the “I don’t care anymore!” guy in that people have to make his last couple of picks for him. Otherwise, he would be selecting Bob Horner, Cecil Cooper and Amos Otis to round out his roster.
Feel free to add any of your own that I might have missed! And either be none of these people at your draft, or all of them at once.