This is really the first week where Topps has stuck to their guns about making lineups as close to set it and forget it as possible. This week’s reload time is 15 mins per play, and with 75 seconds needed to add a player to the lineup, you are going to basically have very little wiggle room with your lineup. 25 plays helps with making sure you have an escape plan if a pitcher gets rocked, but this is going to be an interesting week for a lot of people.
I cant even put into words how important it is to set your first 9 starters of the day as early as possible. That way, you will have the full 25 reloaded by the time the games start. It basically gives you a free 9 plays, as long as you get it done with enough time to spare. It can take 6 hours for your lineup to fully refresh from zero, so plays are a luxury you will not have later on in the day.
Picking Your Starters
The longer the reload and warmup time, the greater it will favor boosted pitcher cards. Even when they give up 3 runs, they can score more points than a hitter with a HR on the board. Pick the players with the lowest ERA and the highest K/9 innings. You can look it up on MLB.com or on BaseballReference.com. If more than one pitcher is going, start with putting in all your golds, then your silvers and so on and so forth. Dont start a white base card of one guy if you have a gold of a similar level of player.
Managing Your Lineup
I would save your 25 plays until the end of the night, just to be safe, otherwise you will be stuck with your lineup and no points. Change out your starters with each phase of the day, so that with each game being played, you have 9 starters in action. DO NOT leave your lineup the same all day. You will have no problem refreshing enough plays over the day to get 27 changes in for afternoon, evening and late night games.
Staying On Top of Your Players
Make sure you dont let a guy’s bad inning scare you. As long as he doesnt give up 3 HR, that is fine. Each pitcher will give up a run at some point, but with such a long reload time, dont give up easily. You will waste your plays switching out guys. If you get scared, just diversify and dont run 9 of the same guy. Yesterday I ran 5 Ryu golds until I was comfortable he was going to be okay. I then added 2 more silvers to further capitalize.
This is the week where many more players will have a chance to win the big awards. Because you dont need to watch every minute of every game, you can easily crack the top players for your team without too much effort. Its going to take a good collection and some luck, but this is the week for a good go at it. Good luck everyone!