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The Z Files: The Art and Science of Draft Strategy

Todd Zola

Todd has been writing about fantasy baseball since 1997. He's the defending champion in NL Tout Wars and Mixed LABR as well as a multi-time league winner in the National Fantasy Baseball Championship. Todd is now setting his sights even higher: The Rotowire Staff League. Lord Zola, as he's known in the industry, won the 2013 FSWA Fantasy Baseball Article of the Year award and was nominated for the 2015 Fantasy Baseball Writer of the Year.

Ive been asked a lot about strategy lately. What was your strategy? Was (insert name here) part of your plan?

At the recent Fantasy Sports Trade Association draft, the participants selected their first-round pick along with an explanation live on SiriusXM. After a rather lengthy validation for Mike Trout, two picks later I leaned into the mic and bellowed, Well take Nolan Arenado because hes good at baseball.

Admittedly, it was done for comedic effect, but it isnt all that far from the truth. I really dont enter a draft or auction with a strategy; its more a style. I know what I want my team to look like, and picking players good at baseball is the best path to get there.

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