For some fantasy baseball players, the excitement is only just beginning. We’re about two-thirds of the way through the fantasy season, and the contenders are starting to distance themselves from the bottom-feeders. It’s a great time of year to be in that first group, but it’s also an exclusive club. It’s easy to get pumped about a full slate of games when you’re on top. If you’re mired in ninth place, a handful of games below .500 and unable to get over the hump, the prospect of checking in on a game between the Diamondbacks and Pirates might just make you sick to your stomach. Luckily, we at Sports Illustrated have a way to salvage the baseball season for the rest of your summer.
Today we are introducing our new fantasy sports app, FanNation, and its first game, Baseball Throwdown, a daily competition that allows you to put your fantasy skills to the test for money or just for bragging rights.
In Baseball Throwdown, owners select one pitcher, infielder and outfielder for the day. The goal is to pick the players who will most outperform their projected totals. The one catch is that you have to pick players from three different teams. As you can see, this is going to take some thought. You can’t just pick Miguel Cabrera, Mike Trout and the best starting pitcher every day. You’re going to have to make some smart managerial moves to win your Throwdown. The good news, though, is that the misguided decisions that might have derailed your regular fantasy baseball season won’t cost you six months, but just one day. If you lose your Throwdown, you can get right back on the app the next day and give it another shot.
There are two different ways to play Baseball Throwdown. You can choose to play head-to-head, going up against one foe, or go with the Triple Play format, that allows for contests of either five or 10 players. In the head-to-head format, only one person can pick a specific player. If you grab, say, Stephen Strasburg, he will be off-limits for your combatant. In Triple Play, there is no limit to how many owners can select a specific player. If you are a betting individual, you can choose to lay a little money on the line and come away from your Throwdown with a tidy profit. If you’re more into it for pride, you can play for free and simply prove your mettle.
The scoring system for Baseball Throwdown is as follows:
Singles – 1 point
Doubles – 2 points
Triples – 3 points
Home Runs – 4 points
Runs – 1 point
RBI – 1 point
Walks – 1 point
Stolen Bases – 2 points
Wins – 3 points
Innings Pitched – 1.5 points
Earned Runs – -1 point
Strikeouts – 1 point
Ready to get started? For tonight’s games, I have selected a lineup of the Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw, the Cubs' Anthony Rizzo, and Milwaukee's Carlos Gomez. Download the FanNation app, create a username (mine is MBeller), and start getting in on the daily fantasy baseball action. Whether or not your actual fantasy baseball season is over, there is always time for a Baseball Throwdown.