iFantasy Baseball

This weekend Conor, Josh and Ron are living the High Life at NYCC.  Sadly, my other job (that pays better) didn’t allow for me to join them. So I’m at home living the normal life.  But there is good news…

Spring is finally here, summer is just around the corner and before you know it we’ll be into fall. What does that mean? It means that we are at the beginning of possibly one of the best sporting seasons of all the seasons.  BASEBALL!!!

Sure, I love college basketball, and I have a fantasy football team –- I love watching soccer (I’m American — we call it soccer) and I LOVE tennis. But there is something really great about baseball and baseball equipment. It is just so calming and relaxing. Some might even say boring. But that’s neither here nor there. The fact is baseball is awesome and it wouldn’t be spring without it.

My team is off to another craptastic start. I’m trying to remember their last good season…oh yeah. 1990. Anyway, as the Reds slowly but surely bring up the rear in the central division, I started thinking of what could possibly make them better. Pitching… hitting… defense can always improve… so pretty much everything.

The Reds, although the oldest team in MLB, are not in a huge market. They don’t have the funds to field a team that is (in my opinion) competitive with the top tier teams. Plus most of our payroll is going to pay for SUPERSTAR Ken Griffey Jr.

How’d that pan out?

But enough about real baseball -– let’s talk fantasy baseball. And not that crappy free ESPN version -– I’m talking about iFantasy Baseball. What’s that you might ask? It’s where you substitute real players with comic characters. I know, right!?!?! Awesome.

However, before you go completely nuts with this –- you need to take a step back and think about your choices… so here are some ground rules to help. “Players” have to stay in their basic position. Example -– The Flash cannot play the ENTIRE field, nor can Superman. However, they can use all of their powers within that position. So, Superman can fly up and catch a ball that might be going out of the park provided it is within his “area”. Also… you have to take personalities into account -– both with position and with teammates.  Also –- when choosing your team -– if there are multiple versions of a character, try and be as specific as possible as to which character you are using (unless it doesn’t matter). Finally -– you need a manager. I’ve struggled with this -– but I think that your manager can come from the comic world or from the baseball world. I don’t know why, it just seems right.

So, without further ado – here is my team (and batting order):

Batting first, playing center field: The Flash (New Frontier). The purpose of a leadoff hitter is to get on base –- and The Flash has good speed and a chance at getting on base on just about any hit. He’s also got the legs to cover ground in CF.

Batting second, playing third base: Wolverine. He sort of reminds me of Pete Rose… in so many ways. And I feel like he’s got good reflexes -– third seems like a natural fit.

Batting third, playing right field: Spider-Man. This was a tough call for me. Webs are totally valid, but he still has to be able to get the ball to his hand and throw it. That certainly kept him out of the infield for me. His spidey sense will help in batting -– my goal is to get the bases loaded (obviously).

Batting cleanup, playing catcher: The Hulk (any Hulk will do). I am imagining him holding a “hulk style” bat -– which looks like one of those kids’ NERF bats but is made of wood. I foresee lots of baseballs landing in the parking lot –- or not landing at all. And, by putting him at catcher he might intimidate the other team while batting.

Batting fifth, playing first base: King Leonidas (300). This is a bold move –- putting a “mortal” on the field. But it boils down to this… he kind of looks like Don Mattingly. I also think he makes a good team captain –- you know -– the first one to wear a rally cap.

Batting sixth, playing left field – Iron Man. He’s got that movie coming out -– so I feel like it could be good press for my team… plus he owns the team… and the stadium… and the league, actually.

Batting seventh, playing shortstop: Wonder Woman. What can I say?We’re an EOE here. I was actually between WW and Batman here -– but I brought in WW because I feel like she’ll bring the right attitude. I don’t need a moody psychopath anchoring the infield. After all, there’s no crying in baseball.

Batting eighth, playing second base: Mister Fantastic. This is a defensive move -– although he might surprise me with his batting. But I really feel like he’s going to keep that side of the infield in check, especially if Leonidas just keeps flexing.

Batting ninth, and pitching: The Tick (animated series). Another bold move here. Very bold. This is was a tough call. His mind is a little out of it -– but I feel like that can be his strength as a pitcher. He won’t feel the pressure of the game or the crowd –- he’ll listen to orders and he’ll probably bring a slew of weird superstitions like Turk Wendell.

Manager –- probably going to use Lou Pinella here. He won the series with my Reds. He’s got a strong personality that can dominate all the whiners (Logan) on my team… and there’s a chance he’s going to get ejected… a lot. And that gets butts in the seats!

Note – there are no DHs – this is not the American Minor Leagues.  Your pitchers have to bat.

So, that’s my team. I feel like I have a pretty good chance of winning the world series with these guys (non-gender specific term). Oh -– and all my games will be called by Bob Uecker –- as if there were anybody else. And if you’ve never heard him call a game and you cannot get to Milwaukee -– watch Major League (just the first one).


  1. PymSlap (@alaska_nebraska) says:

    You have no idea how much I loved this! Lou looks like the Hulk in that photo.


    I don’t know if putting villains on a team is a good idea (how’s that working out for the Thunderbolts?), but Bullseye is good at throwing stuff, and what about that deadly foe of Spider-Man, Boomerang. I bet Ron knows which position that fiend used to play.

    Home run Gordon, sorry you’re missing the con. 

  2. PymSlap (@alaska_nebraska) says:

    The Blob has to be my catcher.

  3. what about Nightcrawler? Wouldn’t it be hard to get a guy out who doesn’t need to run the bases?

    throw Thor in there somewhere too, he can swing that hammer, so he should be able to swing a bat.

  4. man, i could spend hours thinking about this. my initial responses included:

    Prof X as coach – he could telepathically send in signals to all his players, and has experience as a leader. who cares if he can’t walk? most managers are out of shape anyways.

    Lex Luthor as general manager – evil or no, he is an excellent businessman, and would do whatever it took to secure the best deals for the team.

    Daredevil at SS – you know his radar senses would help him in the field, and by the way he throws his billy club, you can tell he’s got a canon for an arm.

    Thor at 1B – IF he can bat with Mjolnir.

    incidentally, does anyone remember dc comics’ showcase ’94 #4, featuring a baseball team filled with inmates of arkham asylum? one of my all-time favorite one-shots! 

  5. I’m from STL so I feel for you as much any rival can, which isn’t much (hehe).

    My team would look something like this:

    Manager: Batman (any deep thinking iteration will do), because there’s no character closer to Larussa in thought than the Bat. Of course you realize this makes Robin the bat-boy.

    Batting first, playing center field – Night Crawler. You’re gonna have a tough time getting anything past this guy considering his teleportation abilities. You’re also not going to be able to prevent him from getting on base. This is a sure thing, an excellent lead-off man.

    Batting second, playing left field – SnakeEyes. I need a guy here who’s not going to fight with me about his position in the batting line-up because he knows he’s good. He’s comfortable with his role and I know he’s good. Simple as that.

    Batting third, playing first base – The Thing (any iteration who knows when it’s "Clobberin Time"). Hulk’s the easy pick here, but I just know he’s going to get frustrated with the the umpire’s calls which will put the ump in the opposing team’s pocket. I can’t have that.

    Batting clean-up, playing catcher – Captain America (one that’s living and not Bucky). It’s obvious who I want manging things from the field. I got a feeling he could keep any pitchers head in check when necessary and he’s a confident unshakable bat who’s not going to be streaky, the kind of bat I need in a clean-up role.

    Batting fifth, playing short-stop – The Wizard, Ozzie Smith (the younger one from the mid-80’s). Gotta show some love for my Cards. Besides, the man was as much a master of the mystical arts as any going doctor, be it Fate or Strange.

    Batting sixth, playing third base – Daredevil (the one with great reflexes and the ability to see w/o sight). I know I’m gonna have to prod him to stick with it at times when it comes to his bat, but nothing’s getting past him down that left field line. The ultimate importance for any third baseman’s his defensive capabilities. I know with Matt Murdock I can’t go wrong.

    Batting seventh, playing right field – MVP (Avengers Initiative). He’s got a chance, just needs some room to grow. Besides that I know he’s not on any illegal substance. He gained all of his abilities naturally.

    Batting eight, pitching – Gambit. It’s the new thing to put pitchers in the eighth position. Of course American League fans wouldn’t know this because they prefer their game with less dynamics (ouch!). Remy’s not gonna have any problem with pitch location, so no matter if he’s got the heat or not he’s gonna hit his spots.

    Batting ninth, playing second base – Bumblebee (the yellow Volkswagen from Gen. 1, circa. 1984-85). He’s trustworthy. You can rely on the fact that Bumblebee’s not gonna let you down. He always comes thru in the clutch.  


  6. @FACE – the only reason I don’t like Ozzie – Barry Larkin was and is my hero.  He had a great career – sadly it mostly overlapped with Ozzie, so he was always playing second fiddle as a the league’s best SS.

    That being said – playing Ozzie is a sweet move.

    As for Nightcrawler – I worry about his focus.  Who’s to say he doesn’t teleport into the stands for a beer – or start hanging out with cheerleaders.  What?!  Cheerleaders?!?!  Did I forget to mention that?  iFantasy baseball has cheerleaders – cementing it’s place as the best sport ever.  You can pick you cheerleaders from our past booth babe galleries. 

  7. Outside of actual, you know, people, the two things I love most in life are baseball and comics, so this is a delight to read.

    1 – Daredevil (SS) – As someone already said, he’d be great at baseball because of his radar and accuracy.

    2 – Wolverine (C) – He’s scrappy.

    3 – Spider-Man (CF) – Fast, strong, and can predict which pitch is trhown to him.

    4 – Thing (1B) bats clean up.  He’s got the power that half these guys bring but he just seems more like an old school baseball kind of guy.

    5 – Ted Williams (LF)

    6 – Mr. Fantastic (3B) Great defense and has a quickness in his swing.

    7 – Nightcrawler (2B) – No teleporting, but he would be sweet in the field like Joe Morgan or Roberto (Remember the) Alomar!

    8 – Green Lantern (RF) – He can make his glove bigger to get those balls just out of reach.

    9 – Captain America (P) – He has wicked movement on his shield and accuracy of Greg Maddux.

    Managing – Batman.

    Announcing – Stan "The Man" Lee 


  8. Could multiple people draft Wolverine, to keep him consistent with the comics?

    Nick Fury would be an awesome manager. 

  9. I would have Taskmaster as pitcher.  You show him every pitcher ever and their best pitches, then he can recreate them with his photographic reflexes.

  10. Talk about "Strange Sports Stories", Gordon, I like how you think!

    Here is my lineup:

    Leadoff, and playing center field: The Flash, Jay Garrick. Sure, he’s older, but he’s still fast and could cover the whold outfield if need be, and he’s seasoned. I see him telling the youngsters about Ted Williams and Mickey Mantle.

    2 –

    3 – Plastic Man (1B): for the same reasons you could pick Mr. Fantastic. He’s got the reach for those wild throws and won’t be pulled off the bag easily. But Plas is more funny and would keep the team in stitches and think of the clubhouse pranks.

    4 – Shoeless Joe Jackson (LF): it’s my team, he’s my hero, and he deserves to be in the hall of fame. ’nuff said

    5 – Power Girl (C) – For the looks alone. Imagine her behind the plate, squating, with that chest protector. What a distraction. And I bet she can spit really well too!

    6 – The chick with the arms from MojoWorld in the X-Men (what’s her name?) (SS) – i just want someone with lots of arms at shortstop!

    7 – Machine Man (3B): I see him stretching that mechanical arm all the way across the field to 1B. Heck, between him and Plas at first, the corners are covered.

    8 – Johnny Thunder (RF): He can’t hit very well and he can’t run worth shite, or catch for that matter, but he keeps hanging around but his thunderbolt makes up for it with food and porn. So we have to stick him somewhere!

    9 – Sportsmaster (P): The only one who would actually take the game seriously. I see him getting really angry at everyone for not giving it the old college try. I hear he has a great knuckleball too!

    Manager: Yogi Berra is too easy a choice for this sad sack lot, and Bats seems to be a popular choice so I’m going against the grain and picking….Darkseid! The Lord of Apokolips could kick dirt with the best of them, and those Omega Eye Beems would strike terror in the hearts of umpires everywhere!

    Batter Up!


  11. Oops..i left out 2B: a hasty late second call brings in Ray Palmer, the Atom. He’s microscopic when they step up to the plate and then poof…he grows big when they try to pull to the right side. And at the plate he has no strike zone. His on-base-percentage is 1000!

  12. man, i can’t believe i forgot about sportsmaster! talk about funny old-time villains…

  13. MODOK would be a nice home plate umpire

  14. MODOK is a great choice for umpire…heck, let’s have a whole "big-head" officiating crew! I would add The Leader and Hector Hammond. They would also make great bobble-heads for "Bobble-Head Nite at the Ballpark"