5 Fantasy Baseball Draft Tips

Fantasy baseball is almost as popular as real-life baseball.
Fantasy baseball is almost as popular as real-life baseball.
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In 1979, sportswriter Daniel Okrent was looking for a way to pass the time on plane trips. He decided to get together his fellow baseball junkies to make up imaginary teams using real major league players' statistics to compete against each other. They called it "Rotisserie" baseball because their first meeting was at a restaurant called La Rotisserie Francaise in New York.

At the time, the group just thought the game was a cool way to put their voluminous knowledge of the sport to use. But with the advent of the Internet, which made it easy for participants to track and analyze the most arcane aspects of players' performances, fantasy baseball blew up into a phenomenon as huge as Barry Bonds' physique [source: Kurland and Lucas]. Today, Forbes.com estimates that various forms of fantasy baseball are played by nearly 11 million people [source: Greenberg]. To put that in perspective, that's about a fifth of the annual attendance at actual major league games [source: Baseball-reference.com].

Like the actual sport, fantasy baseball is a thinking person's game. Click ahead for five tips from veteran fantasy baseball buffs on how to draft the best players for your team.