Fantasy Baseball: 6 Ways to Prepare for Next Year's Season

Stephen Brown@@the__ste (Double Underscore)Correspondent IIAugust 28, 2012

PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 03:  Andrew Cashner #34 of the San Diego Padres delivers a pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on July 3, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Norm Hall/Getty Images

So the fantasy baseball season is coming to a close and here comes fantasy football.

I am assuming most of you have had your draft or will be doing so this weekend, so good luck!

Hopefully you are in the playoffs and if not, then no worries there is always next year!

Speaking of next year, there are some ways to help your prep for next year's draft that will give you a kickstart next season.

Here are six ways to help prepare for next year's season.


Keep Tabs On Those Young Guns That Are Playing Well

There are a lot of players that have a strong, late second half and come out guns a-blazin' the following season.

Nothing very unique about this comment, just continue to pay attention and maybe you will notice something that others are missing.

Keep an eye on who is playing well in the final couple of weeks and make a note on your computer.


Make A Cheat Sheet Now!

Don't be afraid to make a cheat sheet for the following season right now. Unless your computer blows up (very possible) then it will be there to remind you of your thoughts from half a year ago.

Everyone believes they will remember everything come next year's draft but by looking back to your notes, you can see exactly what you were thinking and start the year with all the same information.

The type of sheet you draft is completely up to you, but I suggest you at least write down some names that intrigue you for the following season.


Don't Always Look At Overall Numbers

Especially when it comes to pitchers, overall seasonal numbers can be misleading. If someone pitches one game of 1.2 IP with nine ER, then their whole season will have bloated numbers. 

When it comes to hitters, make sure you look at their ABs because hitting 15 HR might not look that enticing, but when it is in 200 ABs, that player becomes much more desirable.

Do your homework when you make your cheat sheet.


Last Year's Injuries Can Be Your Best Friend

Many times players are forgotten or undervalued since they were affected by injuries the previous year (see Beltran 2010, Wainwright 2012, Anderson 2013).

In many cases, these players can be had on the cheap so make sure to watch them in these last couple of weeks to make sure they are as healthy and awesome as you hope.

Perfect example and my big 2013 sleeper: Andrew Cashner.


Take A Look At How New Trades Affect the New Incumbents

Especially with the Red Sox/Dodgers trade, keep tabs on some of the young guys in Boston and see how they fare. 

As previously mentioned, don't let the BS tell you how they did. Watch a game, see where they bat and see how they look at the plate.

Do they look overmatched?


Watch Some Games!

I have always had a love/hate relationship with box scores. Sure, they give you a tell-tale sign of what happened in the game but there is a lot that a box score does not tell you.

For example, a hitter can have four bullet line outs right to an outfielder or have a home run stolen by a great grab. However, all you will see is 0-for-4.

Moreover, a pitcher can have his command and be pitching very well and then walk one batter, have a defensive player miss a "routine" ball (that is often not counted as an error) and then boom, the one mistake is a three-run HR. No matter what you see in the box score, you won't be dazzled by three ER.

On that same note, a pitcher can have zero ER and not have pitched very well. Watching the games let you use your own intuition rather than relying on the BS. 


Get at me on twitter @the__ste (Double Underscore) for fantasy advice, fantasy articles, Jays news and discussion, as well as anything else I find awesome.