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MLB: Welcome to my fantasy...sports column!

When I snicker at college kids with popped collars, I can’t help but feel a little hypocritical.

After all, I, too, belong to a fraternity. I don’t have any apparel that bears letters of the Greek alphabet, nor have I ever been branded or gone through a grueling pledging process.

Instead, my fraternity is fantasy sports. Fake baseball and football – and let’s not forget hockey – have served a sort of tie that’s bound several circles of my friends together for years.

Sure, every year there’s a couple of managers who can’t make the trip to casa de Heimerman for the baseball draft. But those who do typically make it a weekend. Beer recipes are sampled and exchanged. We catch up. We reminisce.

And then we get down to business.

Aside from the occasional one-liner (most of them “Major League” references), the War Room becomes a place where noise goes to die, save for mouse clicks and keystrokes, as each manager scrambles for one last status update on their prospective next pick.

Is Curtis Granderson healthy (no, he’s not)? Is Matt Garza going to be ready upon spring training’s conclusion (all signs point to yes)?

Those sort of Google searches make questions like, “So how’s Amy’s job going?” or “How’s (insert family member here)’s battle with (insert degenerative illness here) going?” seem trivial.

If you’re a fantasy veteran, you have some idea of what I’m talking about. If you’re in a dynasty league, or a keeper league that’s celebrated a 10-year anniversary, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If your league’s format includes -Only, you’re catching what I’m throwing.

Even if I’m preaching to the choir, I think you’ll enjoy the weekly fantasy feature we’ll publish. It will be just one element of our newly supercharged MLB Extra page. When you tire of my whimsy, there will also be features from beat writers on the page, as plenty of statistician candy.

We’d all like to believe we’re fantasy gurus, yet we spend an inordinate amount of time copying off our neighbors – whether that means scouring an online sports site, or subscribing to a podcast or a blog. We all do it. It’s OK to admit it. This is a safe place.

Personally, I listen to ESPN’s Fantasy Focus baseball podcast, not necessarily because I cherish their advice. It’s commiserating, is all.

So let’s commiserate. Every once in a while, my weekly Market Survey might reveal a junk bond that turns into a Fortune 500-caliber share.

Maybe my sleeper strategy will help you unearth this year’s Jose Altuve or Angel Pagan (both selected by yours truly in the final six rounds of my 10-team NL-Only League’s draft a year ago).

But, for the most part, this is entertainment. And bonding. I hope to build relationships with those out there bold enough to participate in the regular Email the Commish feature.

Need advice? Already think I’m full of hooey? I’m all ears … er, eyes.

Hit your boy up on Twitter (@CHeimerman_SVM) and use the hashtag #SVMfantasy to air your grievances, big or small.

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