TIME apps

Crush Your Fantasy Draft With These 9 Baseball Apps

World Series - San Francisco Giants v Kansas City Royals - Game Seven
Jamie Squire—Getty Images The San Francisco Giants celebrate after defeating the Kansas City Royals to win Game Seven of the 2014 World Series by a score of 3-2 at Kauffman Stadium on October 29, 2014 in Kansas City, Missouri.

Tap into some Moneyball-level sabermetrics with only your smartphone

It might not look like baseball season yet depending on where you live, but Spring Training is about to wrap up, which means the boys of summer will soon be headed north.That means fans are hunkering down in their basements for their fantasy baseball draft.

But rather than lugging a laptop and piles of rotisserie guides to the big event, download some of these apps to your tablet or smartphone instead. Designed from the ground up to help you build a powerhouse fantasy franchise, they’re all you need to dominate your league this year.

DraftValet

Behind every great manager, there’s a great bench coach, whispering sage advice into their ear. But if you don’t have a real-world guru to turn to, this app offers a network of experts to tap for advice. DraftValet starts off by asking for details about your league and team, and then lets you ask anything you please, like which starter would be better in a head-to-head matchup, or what position players would DraftValet’s experts stick with in a keeper league. You can also browse other users’ questions and keep an eye out for trending topics — an important feature for sniffing out up-and-coming players and sleeper picks.

DraftValet is available for free on the App Store.

FantasyPros Mock Draft

Practice makes perfect, and with this simulator you’ll be plenty ready to pick a winner come draft day. Simply plug in your league’s variables, including the amount of teams, draft position, and roster settings (which includes the default modes for CBS, ESPN, and National Fantasy Baseball Championship leagues), and the app breaks down likely scenarios.

An easy-to-access cheat sheet pulls up players’ numbers from last year, their average stats from the previous three seasons, and a 2015 projection, giving you quality information to make your picks. And the app’s artificial intelligence works blazingly fast, which gives you more time to make your own selections, and ample opportunity to hone your draft strategies over and over.

FantasyPros Mock Draft is available for free on the App Store and Google Play.

MLB.com At Bat

Get a steady stream of baseball news, stats, and scores straight from the tap with Major League Baseball’s official app. While it’s free to download, the league has several different ways of getting in your wallet, all depending on how connected to the game you want to be. But to get the most breaking news of on- and off-the-field action, no other app out-pitches this ace. With scores, news, and stats aplenty, it is a must-download for fantasy fans and baseball buffs alike. And with paid subscriptions you can also listen to or watch live game broadcasts — something the saltiest of scouts do everyday, so you should, too.

MLB.com At Bat is available for free on the App Store and Google Play.

MLB PrePlay

For the pros and fantasy players alike, Major League Baseball’s 162-game regular season is a big commitment, if not a full-on slog. If you don’t have time to dedicate to engaging in a full-on fantasy league, this prediction-based game is a great backup. Pitting you 1-on-1 with a real-life opponent, one inning at a time, Preplay is all about predicting the next play. So if you’re the kind of fan who likes to call the action before it happens, this app is a great second-screen companion. And with weekly challenges and power-ups, there’s plenty to keep the game interesting, even if it’s moving slow on the field.

MLB PrePlay is available for free on the App Store and Google Play.

MiLB First Pitch

If you want to catch the next star before he’s even been given a locker with the pros, download this little brother to MLB.com At Bat. A free app that covers at least 160 minor league squads, MiLB First Pitch features a steady feed of scores, news, and stats that’s nearly identical to the big league app (in more ways than one — so be prepared to pay for access to the service’s higher-tier offerings, like video streams of live and on-demand games). Still, with intense coverage of the minors, this is the most in-depth way to follow prospects before you add them to your fantasy team.

MLB.com At Bat is available for free on the App Store and Google Play.

OwnersBox

Designed specifically for fantasy sports fanatics, OwnersBox is a high-powered scout in your pocket, keeping tabs on all your players. With a highly customizable notifications system, the app can send you an alert when one of your player makes news, gets injured, or even every time he is about to dig into the batter’s box. OwnersBox also has a comprehensive list of reports that can help you find hot players and dump cold ones. These reports drill down into nearly every statistic going, ideal if you’re in a league that scores using a variety of categories. And when October comes, OwnersBox is still a keeper, because with NFL, NBA, and NHL stats, it’s a four-sport fantasy tool.

OwnersBox is available for free on the App Store and Google Play.

Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pickups by RotoBaller

With daily-updated analysis, RotoBaller’s app breaks down individual players not just from a historic, statistical perspective, but also by looking at the business realities and lineups around them, providing position-by-position insight on draft day sleepers. In addition, the app tells you which rounds you should consider drafting these players, because there’s nothing more amateurish than going all-in on a fringe player early in your draft. And then, once you get your team in shape, the app is great for browsing to fill out the holes in your lineup.

RotoBaller is available for free on the App Store.

RotoWire Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit 2015

Forget your blank roster sheets, notebooks, or even those custom-made Excel spreadsheets you’ve been using for ages. This app, compatible with both smartphones and tablets, is designed to take the bulk out of your research — and better yet, it dynamically adjusts to your league settings and the players currently available. Featuring projections for 2015 statistics, but able to import the settings of your 2014 league (great for dynasty leagues), the Draft Kit provides projected dollar values for player auctions, as well as recent news and analysis. And with an improved interface over previous Rotowire Draft Kits, now you can just swipe players from your cheat sheet onto the teams that landed them — a huge draft day time saver.

RotoWire Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit 2015 is available for $7.99 on the App Store and $4.99 on Google Play.

RotoWire Fantasy Baseball Assistant 2015

Compatible with both iPhones and iPads, this hub of rotisserie baseball activity will let you import your league from various services, including ESPN and Yahoo, to keep tabs on your players with stat leaderboards, daily lineups, player rankings, and more. The app’s personalized section is also a great place to follow your players’ news, or manage watch lists for players that you’re thinking of adding. And the app also comes with access to the solid RotoWire research, which is otherwise blocked off unless you have a subscription to the website.

RotoWire Fantasy Baseball Assistant 2015 is available for $9.99 on the App Store.

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TIME Crime

Oklahoma Teenager Gets Life in Prison for Role in Shooting of Australian Athlete

Michael Jones
AP This undated booking file photo provided by the Stephens County Okla., Sheriffs Department shows Michael Dewayne Jones, of Duncan, Okla.

Michael DeWayne Jones pleaded guilty to driving the car from which his friend shot Christopher Lane apparently at random

An Oklahoma teenager was sentenced to life in prison on Tuesday, after pleading guilty to his involvement in the 2013 shooting that killed an Australian baseball player in Duncan, Okla.

High school dropout Michael DeWayne Jones, 19, admitted driving the car from which his friend, Chancey Allen Luna, shot Christopher Lane, The Oklahoman reported.

Lane, a 22-year-old rising senior from Melbourne at East Central University in nearby Ada, was in Duncan visiting his girlfriend and was out for a jog when Luna shot him in the back.

“I saw Chancey shoot the jogger,” said Jones in his statement. “I believe that Mr. Lane died as a result of me driving my car while Chancey Luna fired the revolver at him.”

Jones also tendered an emotional apology to Lane’s girlfriend, Sarah Harper, who was in the courtroom with her parents. He said he was “truly sorry” for their loss and hoped they would forgive him. “I pray for you all daily,” he said.

Jones’ guilty plea was part of an agreement that reduced his charge from first-degree to second-degree murder, making him eligible for parole in 36 years. The Associated Press reported that as part of the plea deal, Jones will not testify against Luna, whose trial is set to begin next month.

TIME Baseball

Watch the Yankees Recreate the Babe Ruth Scene From The Sandlot

Starring Brett Gardner as Smalls

Opening Day is drawing near, but some of the New York Yankees decided to test out their acting skills.

In a commercial unveiled Tuesday, a few players recreate the famous scene from The Sandlot (1993) in which Smalls, played by Brett Gardner, brings a ball signed by legendary slugger Babe Ruth to the field. Meanwhile, Dellin Betances, Jacoby Ellsbury, C.C. Sabathia and Didi Gregorius play the furious Sandlot kids.

Watch the full scene at MLB.com.

TIME Baseball

Mo’ne Davis Says Student Dismissed for Tweet Deserves ‘Second Chance’

Mo'ne Davis, the first female pitcher to win a game in the Little League World Series and is in the National Baseball Hall of Fame on Good Morning America on March 10, 2015.
Ida Mae Astute/ABC via Getty Images Mo'ne Davis, the first female pitcher to win a game in the Little League World Series and is in the National Baseball Hall of Fame, on 'Good Morning America' on March 10, 2015.

"Everyone makes mistakes"

Little League World Series star Mo’ne Davis asked Bloomsburg University to reinstate baseball player Joey Casselberry, who was dismissed from the team after writing an offensive tweet about the 13-year-old girl on Friday.

Davis and her coach, Alex Rice, emailed Bloomsburg president David L. Soltz to ask for Casselberry’s reinstatement, TMZ first reported. A spokesman from the school told BuzzFeed News that although it was impressed by Davis’ request, it was standing by its decision to dismiss Casselberry.

“Her request demonstrates the type of person she is, her level of maturity and the empathy that her family and coach teach her,” the spokesman said.

Davis also appeared on ESPN’s SportsCenter to discuss the incident and her willingness to forgive Casselberry’s offenive remark.

“Everyone makes mistakes and everyone deserves a second chance,” Davis said. “I know he didn’t mean it in that type of way, and I know a lot of people get tired of seeing me on TV, but you kind of just gotta think about what you’re doing before you actually do it. I know right now, he’s really hurt and I know how hard he worked just to get to where he is right now. I was pretty hurt on my part, but I know he’s hurt even more.”

In the tweet, which was written on Friday and later deleted, Casselberry called Davis a disparaging name and also insulted the accomplishments of her team, Taney Youth Baseball Association of Philadelphia, in the 2014 Little League World Series.

This article originally appeared on SI.com.

TIME Baseball

College Baseball Player Kicked Off Team for Foul Mo’ne Davis Tweet

Mo'ne Davis
Brian Garfinkel—Getty Images Taney Dragons Pitcher Mo'ne Davis tips her hat as she is introduced and recognized before the game between the Washington Nationals and the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on Aug. 27, 2014 in Philadelphia

Davis was the first girl to throw a shutout in the Little League World Series

A Bloomsburg University baseball player was booted from the team after calling Little League World Series star Mo’ne Davis a “slut” on Twitter.

First baseman Joey Casselberry’s tweet, now deleted, expressed disdain for Disney Channel’s announcement last week of an original movie about the 13-year-old athlete, Philly.com reports. Davis rose to fame last summer as the first girl to throw a shutout in the Little League World Series, sparking a national conversation about views towards young girls and women in sports.

Bloomsburg’s baseball team first announced his dismissal on Twitter Saturday evening:

While Casselbery’s Twitter account is now deactivated, Philly.com adds that the student had first apologized online. “An example that one stupid tweet can ruin someone’s life and I couldn’t be more sorry about my actions last night. I please ask you to … Forgive me and truly understand that I am in no way shape or form a sexist and I am a huge fan of Mo’ne. She was quite an inspiration.”

Read more: Monica Lewinsky and Why the Word ‘Slut’ Is Still So Potent

TIME Sports

Watch Will Ferrell Play Every Position in Baseball

The stunt aimed to raise money for cancer research

On Thursday Will Ferrell set out to make history by playing all nine positions across five spring training games in one day in an effort to raise cancer awareness as part of an HBO documentary.

Ferrell will also be partnering with MLB.com to auction off the gear he wears throughout the stunt to raise money for cancer research.

This article originally appeared on SI.com

TIME Baseball

Will Ferrell Will Play All 9 Positions in 8 Different Baseball Games

Will Ferrell throws out a ceremonial first pitch before the game between the Miami Marlins and the Chicago Cubs in Chicago on July 18, 2012.
Brian D. Kersey—Getty Images Will Ferrell throws out a ceremonial first pitch before the game between the Miami Marlins and the Chicago Cubs in Chicago on July 18, 2012.

The funnyman will play every position in baseball all in one day, for charity

Will Ferrell is doing something crazy. Imagine that.

According to USA Today‘s Bob Nightengale, Ferrell is planning to play all nine positions on a baseball field Thursday in Arizona. Or, rather, on several baseball fields. Ferrell will have a helicopter take him to each of the eight Cactus League ballparks hosting games that day, and all for a good cause.

Ferrell’s stunt is part of a cancer awareness event that will be filmed by HBO, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The first game of the day is between the A’s and Mariners at noon local time. The Dodgers-Padres game is the last and starts at 6:15.

This, of course, will not be Ferrell’s first professional baseball appearance. He showed up at a Round Rock Express game as a middle reliever named Billy Ray “Rojo” Johnson in 2010 as part of another cancer event.

If the 47-year-old utility man is looking for a major-league deal, he’ll get to show off his stuff for plenty of teams.

This article originally appeared on SI.com.

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TIME Food & Drink

This Bacon-Topped Hot Dog in a Krispy Kreme Donut Bun Is the Epitome of America

With jam, of course

A minor league baseball team and Krispy Kreme have joined forces to create an artery-clogging stadium snack that is, quite truly, a masterpiece.

Wilmington BlueRocks fans can now enjoy a Krispy Kreme glazed donut hot dog, complete with bacon and raspberry jam accoutrement.

Last week, the Arizona Diamondbacks premiered a churro hot dog:

What will be next in the baseball dessert-dog arms race?

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TIME

Meet the MLB Millionaire Who Lives in a Van Behind a Florida Walmart

A curiosity in the flashy world of professional athletes

Daniel Norris is 21 years old. He lives in a $10,000 1978 VW Westfalia camper van (named “Shaggy”) behind a Walmart in Florida. He shaves with an axe and cooks his meals on a camp stove.

Happy Valentine's Day from me & mine. 🚌💛 #vanlife #together4ever – shot by @low_pez for @vice

A photo posted by Daniel Norris (@danielnorris18) on

He’s also a millionaire with a 92-m.p.h. fastball. Norris, you see, received a $2 million bonus for signing with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2011, and he’s currently the team’s number one prospect, in line for a spot in its starting rotation.

Norris’s unusual lifestyle has received extensive press as baseball season approaches: ESPN the Magazine wrote a thorough exploration of his day-to-day life, which includes surfing, writing in a “thought journal,” reading Jack Kerouac and doing resistance workouts on abandoned grocery carts. He lives this way, he says, to escape the pressure built up around his rising fame.

Bedtime stories. For @Vice – stay tuned for the documentary coming out soonish. #vanlife #jkl

A photo posted by Daniel Norris (@danielnorris18) on

“It’s like a yin-and-yang thing for me,” he told ESPN. “I’m not going to change who I am just because people think it’s weird. The only way I’m going to have a great season is by starting out happy and balanced and continuing to be me. It might be unconventional, but to feel good about life I need to have some adventure.”

Norris, who, among his other quirks, says he’s never tasted alcohol, is a curiosity in the flashy world of professional athletes. But the consensus seems to be that if it works, it works.

“He takes care of himself as well as anybody we’ve got,” Tony LaCava, Toronto’s assistant general manager, told ESPN. “He’s in great shape. He competes on the mound. If that wasn’t the case, maybe we’d be more worried about some of the other stuff. But right now, the van and all that is secondary. He has great values, and they’re working for him.”

I had just slipped into my wetsuit & pulled the French Press off the stove when I heard "enough in there for 2?" I had noticed an old Astro van parked behind me when I pulled up. Now there was a shaggy haired dude hopping out walking over to me. "You live in that thing?" – "yeah, I do now. Do you live in that Astro?" – "sure do!" (He was in his wetsuit as well) He asked me why I live in it. Quickly answering I said "SOLITUDE" – & You? – "I don't wanna have a job" .. Fair enough. He introduced himself as Greg the former Photographer from Virginia. I, as Daniel- Apostle (one on a special mission). He insisted on taking my portrait. As he does for many of the people he has met in his 6 months on the road. – Here is the photo he took. #surfcheck – we shared many waves today, a few cups of coffee & endless memories of the road. Nice to meet you, Greg the Photographer from Virginia. #vanlife

A photo posted by Daniel Norris (@danielnorris18) on

Norris asked financial advisors to deposit his bonus in various investments where he wouldn’t have to keep track of it. He gets $800 per month deposited in his checking account. “I’m actually more comfortable being kind of poor,” he says.

Norris frequently uses Matthew McConaughey‘s mantra, “Just keep living,” as a hashtag for his posts on Instagram and Twitter. A sampling of thoughts from his journal reads as follows:

“Research the things you love.”

“Gain knowledge. It’s valuable.”

“Be kind. Be courteous. Love others and be happy. It’s that simple.”

For Norris, it certainly appears that way.

This article originally appeared on People.com

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