Yahoo! is traditionally considered to be the premier destination of FREE fantasy sports, and I have to say that their fantasy baseball services in 2008 are pretty strong. CBS Sportsline offers four different game types in 2008, but three are pre-set, different takes on roto baseball… only one is head-to-head. Yahoo! FREE baseball has three specific game types – a head-to-head game, a rotisserie game, and a points only game.
One very cool feature of Yahoo! FREE Fantasy Baseball is that regardless of what game type you select, Yahoo! allows the league commissioner to control the statistics of the league. If you and your friends want to have a stat category for Grand Slam Home Runs, go for it! In their points-only game, Yahoo! also allows the league commissioner to control point values for each category. CBS Sportsline’s FREE Fantasy Baseball has more game styles, but each game comes with pre-set statistics. If you’re not paying CBS, they won’t let you alter the game.
Yahoo’s 2008 FREE Fantasy Baseball comes with Full Commissioner Controls, a Live Draft Application, Express Registration, Wireless Access, League Communication Tools, and a Fantasy Profile for you and your league members. For those who have commished a league in Yahoo! Fantasy Baseball in the past, but didn’t in 2007, beware… Express Registration will not be an option for you.
The Full Commissioner Controls are the biggest benefit of hosting your league with Yahoo! FREE Fantasy Baseball. Not just for the control of the stat categories, Full Commissioner Controls allow your league commish to control the amount of adds and drops, the trade deadline, and a host of other features. Most fantasy baseball commissioners like to run the show, and having the ability to have things done your way is a BIG BONUS.
If you are looking to buy your league in 2008, Yahoo’s Fantasy Baseball PLUS is tough to beat. Choose from three different styles of head-to-head games, roto ball, and a points only game. Besides traditional Yahoo! head-to-head where teams are matched up and earn wins and losses per stat category, Yahoo! Fantasy Baseball PLUS allows for head-to-head point scoring and head-to-head matchups with only one win.
As I stated in the CBS Sportsline review, I am a big fan of head-to-head leagues. Last season was the first time I competed in a head-to-head league that gave either one win or one loss to teams in a weekly matchup (similar to fantasy football). This is a preferred scoring method of W’s and L’s, because it keeps teams competitive longer. Fantasy baseball is a long season, and teams that fall out of competition quickly (especially in FREE leagues) become abandoned by their general manager’s at a very high rate.
Yahoo! Fantasy Baseball PLUS does not have different levels like CBS Sportsline. The fee is $124.99 to start a league, with a charge of $24.99 for additional teams (if you’re going to have a VERY deep league). In addition to all the features of the Yahoo! FREE game, buyers of Baseball PLUS receive Advanced Tools and Data, League Prizes, Pre-Draft Player Picks (essential for keeper-leagues), a Divisional Play option, Preferred Draft Times, Priority Customer Service, StatTracker, a Draft Kit from KFFL and Rotowire, and Weekly Scouting Reports from KFFL.
Options like StatTracker ($9.99), the Draft Kit ($9.99), and the Weekly Scouting Report ($14.99) are also available for Yahoo! FREE Fantasy Baseball at an additional cost.
Yahoo! FREE Fantasy Baseball is one of the top fantasy games on the internet. I would recommend Yahoo’s free game over CBS Sportsline’s for those serious fantasy baseball players that don’t want to pay, because of the ability to customize your league on Yahoo! (an option that isn’t really available on CBS Sportsline).
After checking out two FREE Fantasy Baseball services for 2008, Yahoo seems to be the clear-cut #1.