ESPN Baseball Nerds Start Fantasy Umpire League

You thought you were all geeked out this baseball season with your five different fantasy teams — each one with different stats, metrics, scoring style, and clever names like “Shane Halter Tops” and “Mlicki Mouse Club.” But the ESPN gang probably has you beat. Buster Olney shared in his blog (Insider only, sorry freeloaders) that he’s part of a fantasy baseball league where GMs only draft umpires.

Umpires arguing

(”Whoever’s umpiring the Cubs game” is not a valid fantasy selection.)

The roto rules seem pretty simple: “[W]e were not scanning the names of the candidates with thoughts of QuesTec or bang-bang play efficiency. No, we considered only one factor. Ejections.”

Ranked No. 1 on ESPN’s Fantasy Umpire list was Phil Cuzzi, who led the league with 11 ejections. The next most ejecto-happy ump only threw out seven men. No word if Olney reached out for the fantasy consultation of Bristol stat minion Tristan H. Cockcroft to make his selection of five umpires, or if Enrico Palazzo found his way onto the roster.

It's Enrico Palazzo!