• I’ve been playing fantasy baseball in some form or fashion since 1998, but none of those leagues could prepare me for “The Great Fantasy Baseball Invitational” (or TGFBI, if you will). I’ve played in leagues with as few as eight teams all the way up to 30 teams, I’ve played in head-to-head categories and roto leagues. I’ve played in re-draft, keeper, and dynasty leagues. They all pale in comparison to TGFBI.

    Let’s back up a little bit here and let me explain what TGFBI is. TGFBI is a massive fantasy baseball contest that includes players from all walks of the fantasy baseball industry and a handful of satellite league winners, created and ran by fantasy baseball powerhouse, Justin Mason (@JustinMasonFWFB on Twitter/X; writer/podcaster for Fangraphs; owner of FriendswithFantasyBenefits; writer for FantasyPros). Justin works with Rotowear to create custom shirts every year, with a portion of every shirt sold going to the charity “Fantasy Cares.” More money is raised for the charity from those who wish to enter the satellites, as a donation to “Fantasy Cares” is required for entry (as big or as little as you can afford) and also throughout Podapallooza, two days filled with live podcasts featuring analysts, writers, podcasters, etc. from all over the fantasy baseball industry.

    I have tried twice before to get into TGFBI, trying the satellite leagues route. The first year (2022) I finished in 12th place. The second year, a bit desperate and in need of someone to keep me grounded, I found a co-manager willing to be bothered by 2 am text messages and hour long phone calls over which platoon bat we should draft in round 28. This resulted in a 5th-place finish, which, yes, was closer to the top, but was not a victory.

    So, I decided on an “easier” route to entry: I joined the fantasy baseball industry, by creating written content for this website, SportsEthos. I started last year, writing one little article a week, the Saturday “Daily Pickups” article, whereas this year, so far, I have written the entirety of the dynasty rankings for our draft guide and have more dynasty focused articles on the way.

    Now, here we are. Post-draft, a few days away from the Dodgers and Padres playing a two-game series in Korea and two weeks away from opening day for the rest of the league. We’re going to step into my TGFBI league and look at the picks I made and why I made them, with a little commentary on others’ picks along the way.

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