Dear Disengaged Owner

Dear Disengaged Owner,

This has been hard for you in the past, but please read carefully.  Today, we are officially ending our relationship.

I wish I could say it’s been fun, but I think we both know this is long overdue.  As good as your original intentions may have been when you first joined our league, this is no longer meant to be.  But don’t worry, it’s not me, it’s you.  

You’re probably thinking you deserve some kind of explanation, but I struggle to know if you’re thinking at all when my only impression of you is just a random one-liner every six weeks to ask me what I might want for Cody Bellinger. I used to play that game with you, but not any longer.  I used to give you the benefit of the doubt that you were the most indecisive human on the planet, but I now know the real reason it takes you fourteen days to respond to a trade offer is because you’re completely checked out.  

Why even play at all? Your annual signature move is to complain about small rule changes you conveniently failed to vote on.  Your trade offers are like surprise drone attacks, coming out of nowhere to drop a payload of destruction so lopsided that it would literally force me to rebuild my roster the next morning.  You have 10th place on cruise control, expertly playing for the future every single year.  You somehow never remember to plan for injuries.  Your trade block still lists players you dropped in April. Your biggest yearly contribution is the day you pay your league dues.

Hurt your feelings? Look, I know you’re super busy with the other game of life because you remind us all the time. By our count it appears you have at least ten weeks of vacation a year, but since your employer forces you to use them all between April and October, I’m sure life can feel pretty restrictive.  True, I don’t know the other owners well enough to verify if you’re the only one in the league with a full time job, a yard to cut, a dog to walk, and a couple of kids to feed, but they seem to be able to live up to their commitment every year without complaint.  I understand in today’s environment where the average American spends almost five hours a day using their phone that it can be especially difficult to spare two minutes for setting your lineup when the website does only 90% of the work for you.  And you’re right, leaving your 60-day DL players in your active lineup is an interesting best practice for someone who reappears twice a season to recommit themselves publicly to being more efficient with their time.  That said, we do appreciate that this is “one of your favorite leagues”.

Where do we go from here? There are a lot of reasons to be frustrated with your antics, but I’m not going to mention how your total lack of participation damages the competitive balance of our league, or how your maddening disconnect with player values causes our other owners to scream, or how your utter inability to pay attention to baseball during pre-season football forces us to check your social media accounts just to see if you’re still alive.

Instead, I’m only going to mention one reason why it’s now finally time to end our relationship: you have a complete lack of passion for playing this game with excellence.  Where is your desire to win? Where is your pride in avoiding to lose? Where is your commitment to seeing something through to the very end? Where is your honor in trying at every moment, at all costs, to sharpen your skills, improve your analysis, and master your craft?

Maybe things will change in the future, but today I have to officially say goodbye. You’ve been quitting us for years, Mr. Disengaged Owner, so today we’re quitting you.


Your Commish

This post is about 20 years in the making, but somewhat inspired recently by a new relegation rule we implemented in the Ottoneu Champions league.  For the first time ever, the race at the bottom of the standings is just as fun as the race at the top.

Have you ever had to deal with a disengaged owner?

Trey is a 20+ year fantasy veteran and an early adopter of Ottoneu fantasy sports. He currently administers the Ottoneu community, a network of ~1,200 fantasy baseball and football fans talking sports daily. More resources here:

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6 years ago

We once had a guy leave the league cause he was moving across the country, and then come back 15 years later who only showed up for the auction and, at least once, literally do NOTHING else. No trades, no FAAB, no reserving of players… nothing. We didn’t understand why he came back. Weirdest thing is that he was friends with most of the league and had been an active owner the first time through.

The Real McNulty
6 years ago

you answered it. He’s friends with everyone and wanted to be at the draft