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Joe Maddons shifts are causing fantasy baseball controversy

Joe Maddons shifts are causing fantasy baseball controversy
Published On: Wed, Jun 07
Dec 10, 2015; Nashville, TN, USA; ESPN Baseball Tonight analyst Buster Olney talks about the Baltimore Orioles retracting the seven year 150 million offer to first baseman Chris Davis (not pictured) during the MLB winter meetings at Gaylord Opryland Resort . Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Winning a fantasy baseball championship requires a tremendous amount of work. In addition to the countless hours you spend scouting players and doing research for your draft, the in-season management it takes to keep your roster competitive requires your constant attention. You are required to keep a watchful eye on your players level of productivity, your place in the standings for each individual scoring category, explore potential trades and, of course, make strong waiver pick-ups to augment your teams overall production. But one of the most often overlooked aspects of being a savvy fantasy general manager is to know the rules of your league inside and out.

Throughout your prep work, you were undoubtedly advised to utilize players with multi-position eligibility. Rostering those who qualify at a variety of positions gives you added roster flexibility and allows you to explore a greater number of waiver possibilities if you were in need of supplementing your roster in the wake of injuries. If you drafted Javier Baez as a shortstop and lost Jason Kipnis at second base, you werent limited to only scouring the shortstops on your waiver wire. The addition of a middle or corner infield spot also helps with this, but again, given the rash of injuries weve seen this season, the need to replace multiple players at once has become prevalent.

While youre can look for players with multi-position eligibility on your waiver wire, the quality of those who are eligible isnt exactly first-rate. Usually you will find a slew of light-hitting middle infielders who meet the criteria, but their playing time is that of a back-up utility man, not of someone who is going to see full-time at-bats. And that brings us to some next-level fantasy general manager work that few people pay much mind but should, especially with what weve recently seen in Major League Baseball.

For those who havent been paying attention, theres a bit of controversy developing in the fantasy community because of in-season position eligibility changes. Most leagues will allow a player to add eligibility at a new position if they make a certain number of in-season appearances at a position different from their primary. The criteria changes from league to league, but anywhere between five and 10 games seems to be to most commonly used. Though that rule has been around for quite some time, its flaws are now being exposed by Cubs manager Joe Maddons implementation of defensive shifts.

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