I don't always play fantasy baseball, but when I do, I use the Rotoworld Fantasy Draft Guide

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RW.jpgWe interrupt this program for some shameless promotion. Partially self-promotion, actually, which you’re used to from me by now, so it shouldn’t be a big deal.  Anyway:

As you all know, Aaron, Matthew, D.J., Drew and many others spend a huge amount of their time making your fantasy baseball life better over at Rotoworld.  Their biggest labor of love with that stuff, however, is putting together the annual Rotoworld Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide.  The 2010 edition is on sale now, and it’s more than worth the Andrew Jackson plus shipping they’re asking for it.

What do you get for your money? Plenty: analysis, projections, and profiles for over 1,000 players ranging down to A-ball.  Articles covering prospects, keeper-league strategies, mock drafts, sleepers and busts. There are customizable, printable cheat sheets, updated depth charts for
all teams and all manner of other goodness.

I’m a fantasy baseball moron, but I wrote a couple of articles for the thing too, most notably the 2010 “Year in Preview” in which I make hilarious predictions of what might come to pass this year, such as “Joe Mauer gets his tongue stuck to the flag pole of Target Field, ‘Christmas Story’-style following a triple dog dare.” Of course, the piece went to press before the McGwire stuff broke, rendering my “hilarious” prediction that, no matter how much candor McGwire displays, reporters will still call for him to “come clean” and call him a “distraction” less humorous than prescient. This could bode ill for Joe Mauer.

Anyway, I don’t try to sell you a lot of stuff around here, but the Rotoworld Draft guide is definitely worth buying.  Details here. Order here. Operators are out having a smoke break, so some automated order-fulfillment application is standing by!

Hideki Matsui thinks Shohei Otani should pitch and hit in MLB

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Yankees’ special advisor and former outfielder Hideki Matsui expects to help the club “convince or recruit” Japanese two-way star Shohei Otani, according to a report from MLB.com’s Deesha Thosar. The Yankees are currently viewed as the favorites to sign Otani, though there still figures to be plenty of competition for his services when he finally becomes eligible to enter Major League Baseball.

Matsui also told Thosar that while he hasn’t seen a player find success as a hybrid pitcher/slugger in the majors, he’s taken notice of Otani’s success in both areas. “He’s done well in Japan, so as a baseball fan I’m looking forward to how he’s going to do here in the Majors and in the U.S.,” Matsui said, later adding, “If [pitching and hitting is] something he wants to do, and the team wants it, then why not?”

Neither the Yankees nor any other suitor should be too concerned with Otani’s ability to translate his .332 batting average and 3.20 ERA to MLB — at least, not just yet. There are still a few roadblocks in his path to the major leagues, most notably the lack of approval from the Players Association. Per FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman, the union doesn’t want to sign off on an agreement that would give the Nippon Ham Fighters a $20 million posting fee in exchange for Otani’s services. According to the posting system rules, Otani himself would be eligible to receive no more than a $4 million signing bonus.

The good news in all of this? The union agreed to reach a final decision by Monday, November 21, so there’s still a chance Major League Baseball will see the talented two-way player bring his unique skillset to the field in 2018.