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Calling all Dear Abby Readers...
April 12, 2002

Is there anything more frustrating than the first two weeks of the baseball season? You start looking at your stats and are worried that A Rod might only hit .228 and finish with 48 RBIs. Then you come to your senses and realize that two weeks does not a season make. Unless, of course, you read these fantasy website Q & A forums where the "fantasy experts" answer questions allegedly sent in by fantasy baseball owners.

These questions are the most ridiculous things you will ever set your eyes on (next to Don Zimmer in a baseball uniform). Have you ever read Dear Abby and convinced yourself that the mail from readers is made up? There's just no way Suzy from Topeka would seek the advice of some old lady writing a dated column because her child has issues with her new live-in boyfriend. Aren't there more qualified people in Topeka, Suzy? The Parade magazine and USA Weekend, found in many Sunday papers throughout the U.S., use similar absurdities to fill the page.  How many times have you read this:  "Please settle a bet for us.  I say that Jennifer Aniston was in that bad horror flick 'Leprechaun' years ago but my husband says it was Rosanna Arquette.  Who is right?"  Answer:  you are both idiots.  Call a video store, look online, ask a friend.  No normal human being would go out of their way to write a letter to these people for such insipid reasons.

Returning to the original point, the people who ask these fantasy baseball questions also cannot be real. For instance, on the CBS Sportsline website, a reader named Jim Ross from British Columbia is worried that A Rod, Juan Pierre, and Joe Mays are underperforming and wants to know if he should make any changes. IF Jim Ross is real, what does he possibly think he is going to get for an answer? "For god's sake, release A Rod and trade Joe Mays immediately," the answer man should say. Even worse than asking the questions is having to answer them. Another reader, Joey Deanda,  asks if he should drop Javier Vazquez for Livan Hernandez.  If Joey has to ask that question, hopefully his league is free because 'lil Joe need not be present on award night. Yet another reader, Kevin Horton, claims that Josh Beckett and Ben Sheets are free agents and wants to know which one to pick up. Do you play in a 5-team league Kevin?

My only reasoning is that the experts want to write about specific players (Ben Sheets, Vazquez, etc.), so they make up bogus questions from fictional people.  Uh, why not just give us the skinny on the players you want to talk about?  On that note, here's something I received from Brian Gilbride of Pensacola, Florida:

"Hey Commish, I'm really worried about Jason Kendall.  He's hitting under .100 and has no home runs or RBIs.  Should I cut my losses now and release him or should I wait it out?"

My response:  I'm so glad you brought up Jason Kendall!  While it's true that Kendall is struggling at the plate, it's a little early to cut the cord on an outfielder who steals bases, plays every day, and qualifies as a catcher.  I expect Kendall to heat up with the weather and finish with statistics comparable to last year.

Nothing sells better than fiction.