M as in Mancy: A Fantasy Baseball Experiment

Last year, I drafted an entire fantasy baseball team made up of players with names beginning with J. It started as an accident, drafting Josh Donaldson/Jose Abreu/JD Martinez, and once I realized they all had J names is spiraled out of control.

I posted updates on Reddit throughout the season. The team ended up in 2nd place and was competitive all season. It was nuts. Crazy and fun and wild and nuts

This year I'll be repeating the experiment, and posting updates on my blog. But I have a new gimmick this year.

M as in Mancy

(In case you don't get the title, it's a reference to this scene from Archer). 

I'll be posting weekly updates (or bi-weekly, or tri-weekly, or whenever I goddamn feel like it get off my back mom) on Mondays this year to keep you abreast of the glory (and failures) of the team. Read on if you want to hear about my draft strategy and how I ended up with the team I did.

The draft was last night, and it went as well as could be expected. I had the 5th pick. I missed out on a few players I wanted but hey, them's the breaks. Here's a position-by-position breakdown of my draft strategy, with the player's average draft position in parenthesis. Bolded players are ones I drafted.


  1. M. Wieters (275)
  2. M. Montero (1069)
  3. M. Zunino (1137)

Yeah, my options were a bit limited here. Wieters is the guy, but at least I was able to wait until the 17th round to get him.

First Base

  1. M. Cabrera (13)
  2. M. Carpenter (77)
  3. M. Holliday (168)
  4. M. Napoli (173)
  5. M. Moreland (300)
  6. M. Gonzalez (462)

Although Carpenter has 1B eligibility in Yahoo, he's far more valuable at 2B and 3B so let's ignore him, because he's never going to play 1B for me. I was hoping Miggy would fall to me in the 2nd round, but sadly he did not, and I waited too long to grab Holliday. So Napoli is my first baseman. I'm still not sure how I feel about that.

Second Base

  1. M. Carpenter (77)
  2. M. Gonzalez (462)

Yeah, we're pretty weak on depth here. I reached for Carpenter and took him in the 3rd round. I feel confident with him holding down the position, but I sure hope I don't get stuck running Marwin Gonzalez out there if an injury happens.

Third Base

  1. M. Machado (8)
  2. M. Carpenter (77)
  3. M. Franco (123)
  4. M. Sano (145)
  5. M. Moustakas (205)
  6. M. Gonzalez (462)

Third basemen for daaaaaaaaaaaaaays. Machado's gunna be my SS, and Carpenter is my 2B, so in reality this position belongs to Franco and Sano. I think Franco's poised for a big breakout year, and Sano should improve on his 2016 season, so I feel pretty damn good about taking them in the 9th and 10th rounds.

Short Stop

  1. M. Machado (8)
  2. M. Semien (226)
  3. M. Gonzalez (462)
  4. M. Duffy (611)

It's the Machado show all day, every day. Snagged him with my first round pick, and then book-ended the draft by taking Semien with my last pick, just to have a backup. My entire draft strategy revolved around getting Machado, so after that everything was cake.


  1. M. Trout (1)
  2. M. Betts (2)
  3. M. Kemp (72)
  4. M. Trumbo (88)
  5. M. Ozuna (134)
  6. M. Brantley (137)
  7. M. Sano (145)
  8. M. Holliday (168)
  9. M. Cabrera (217)
  10. M. Conforto (242
  11. M. Kepler (253)
  12. M. Margot (301)
  13. M. Upton (366)
  14. M. Saunders (495)

Trout and Betts were never really on the table for me. After that things opened up pretty wide. Grabbed Kemp in the 4th round, Trumbo in the 6th, then Brantley in the 12th. Conforto I'm really just holding onto in case he has a big breakout year, because he's killin' it in spring training.

Starting Pitching

  1. M. Scherzer (14)
  2. M. Bumgarner (17)
  3. M. Tanaka (74)
  4. M. Fulmer (113)
  5. M. Harvey (120)
  6. M. Stroman (151)
  7. M. Estrada (194)
  8. M. Shoemaker (195)
  9. M. Pineda (201)
  10. M. Moore (219)
  11. M. Leake (292)
  12. M. Foltynewicz (297)
  13. M. Montgomery (299)
  14. M. Andriese (317)

In all my mock drafts (six of them. Six!) I was able to grab one of Scherzer/Bumgarner in the 2nd round. So guess what happened on draft day? Both of them got snagged right before my 2nd pick. So I was forced to super-reach for Tanaka with my 2nd pick instead. But beyond that, I've got a lot of really solid pitching. This is going to be a quantity vs quality thing: with 9 starting pitchers hopefully I can win the three counting stats (Wins, Strikeouts, and Quality Starts) every week.

Relief Pitching

  1. M. Melancon (142)
  2. M. Bush (350)
  3. M. Lorenzen (532)
  4. M. Cabrera

Okay, so we've got a problem. Melancon is the only reliever with an M name. This was a problem because A) I needed to reach for him hard, in the 5th round, because I've seen him go much earlier than expected in my mock drafts, and B) it means I'm thin on depth. I drafted Matt Bush with the hope that he gets the closer job in Texas, and have my eyes on setup men Lorenzen and Cabrera in case their able to get promoted too. But otherwise, I'm not going to be winning Saves very much. I might even see if I can move Melancon and punt on Saves entirely. We'll see.

So that's the team. Other players I have my eye on are Martin Prado, Melvin Upton, Miguel Gonzalez, Mike Leake, and Matt Andriese. I'm sure there will be a lot of transactions as the year goes on. Cheers to another hopefully-successful-but-probably-disastrous fantasy baseball year!