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Product Review: RotoDerby Offers a New Spin on Fantasy Baseball

March 12, 2014 | By RotoRob | comment on this post
Edwin_Encarnacion had another monster year for the Toronto Blue Jays.
Edwin Encarnacion is a perfect RotoDerby asset: lots of homers and RBI, not many Ks. (Breakingblue.ca)

RotoDerby has taken the standard Fantasy baseball game and put a whole new spin on it, with what it’s calling a “Longball Derby.”

There’s a very good reason it’s using this term, as the stats are heavily weighted towards home runs.

You pick a 10-player starting roster (six infielders and four outfielders) with a home run cap (which varies annually), and compete against the rest of the pack to achieve the highest fantasy points for the season based on three stats: home runs (five points), runs batted in (one point) and strikeouts (minus one point).

Simple, right?

It gets better: once you pick your team, it’s locked in for the entire season once the Derby begins, requiring a lot less of your time.

This twist not only simplifies the game by taking the headache of day-to-day maintenance out of your hands (thereby appealing to the neophyte or time-strapped Fantasy owner), but brings in new and interesting strategies. We know that homer hitters are the most valuable players here, but because you are unable to replace an injured player, durability becomes nearly as key a factor when choosing players.

Another interesting way RotoDerby levels the playing field — and helps address the injury situation — is by resetting the standings every month.

So, if your team suffered an injury or stunk it up in April, don’t sweat it, you start all over again in May with another opportunity to win the hefty monthly prizes.

And speaking of prizes, the money being offered is pretty sweet compared to the entry fees.

There are three tiers of Longball Derby:

  • 60K Longball Derby: US$99 entry fee; US$5,000 monthly first place prize (with the top five finishers each getting a prize); US$6,000 for the top overall team for the season (top 10 earn prizes).
  • 15K Longball Derby: US$29 entry fee; US$1,250 monthly first place prize (top five earn prizes); US$1,500 first place prize for the season (top 10 earn prizes).
  • Longball Derby Challenge — Beat the Experts (Ray Flowers and Jeff Mans from the Fantasy Alarm): Entry is free; US$50 monthly first place prize (top three earn prizes); US$250 first place prize for the season (top five earn prizes).

So for less than US$100, you’ll get six cracks at the monthly prize of US$5K, not to mention the season-long prize. Typically, derbies are capped at 1,000 teams, so the odds are pretty solid given the investment.

RotoRob MLB Writer Josh Johnson will be taking RotoDerby for a test drive, drafting teams in all three tiers, and filing monthly reports about how he approached his drafts from a strategy perspective with updates on how his teams are doing. Come play for free and see if you can beat Josh in the Longball Derby Challenge — Beat the experts.

Now it’s your turn. Let us know in the comments below what you think of this new Fantasy offering.

Save $1 on The 2014 Fantasy Baseball Guide

Buy the 2014 Fantasy Baseball Guide online, use promo code ROTOROB2014 and save yourself a buck. Do it. Do it now.

RotoRob’s Fantasy Baseball Weekly Podcast

Crave more in-depth Fantasy analysis? Then join us every Thursday at 9 p.m. EST for RotoRob’s Fantasy Baseball Weekly Podcast on Blogtalkradio as we entertain and edify you for a half hour or more each week. This week, Bob Raymond again joins RotoRob, and John Rotondo, CEO of RotoDerby, will join us to tell our listeners more about his new game. Tune in here.

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