by "Biggest Daddy"
Interview with Tom
DADDY: Thank you for sitting down with us for another installment of "BDBL:
A retrospective". Generally speaking, how do you feel about the BDBL?
TOM DISTEFANO: I love
the BDBL. I canít imagine pulling together a smarter or more dedicated
group than the guys we have running teams in this league and Glander is
the perfect guy to pull it all together. Itís a great challenge and I
really enjoy the competition.
BD: How have you
felt about the overall success of your franchise at this point?
TD: Iíve caught some
really big breaks with farm players over the years (Oswalt, Peavy, Felix
Hernandez, Kelly Johnson, Lincecum, etc) leading to some great success.
Tack on a lot of luck in the post season and Iím very happy with my
teamsí success over the years.
BD: What is your
favorite aspect of the BDBL?
TD: Managing my
games. No, Iím kidding, itís actually drafting (FA and farm).
BD: Tell us the
absolute low point of your franchise, whether it was a particular game
lost, or a particular trade ripped to shreds, or a particular fellow GM
that ticked you off.
TD: Ohhhh without a
doubt the 2003 championship series was my low point. I had a good team,
was up two games to none, and then my team completely fell apart. I
lost three, one-run games and hit into eleven dpís in the four losses.
Throw in the Condrey fiasco and the Manny Ramirez meltdown and it was
definitely my low point. I just hope writing about it doesnít cause the
nightmares to return.
BD: Over the
course of your time in the BDBL, who is the one GM that you consider
your largest rival or target?
TD: Chris Luhning is
the obvious answer because he usually fields a really strong team and is
in my division. John Gill and DJ Shepard also cause me a lot of grief
as they seem to be picking right off my draft lists.
BD: Name a GM that
you absolutely love to talk trade with.
TD: I think my
favorite trading partner is Anthony Peburn. He enjoys trading and is
pretty straight forward and very responsive.
BD: How did you
first hear of the BDBL?
TD: The BDBL was
listed on the Diamond Mind website. I was considering joining a league
(was in one that was folding) so I lurked on the forum for a bit and
applied. I got lucky as someone had recently quit and there was an
BD: What would it
take for you to exit the league?
TD: Some kind of
crazy scandal. Like finding out that Glander and DJ are actually the
same person (has anyone actually ever seen DJ?). Otherwise, I canít
really see myself quitting as I find it to be a challenging and relaxing
BD: What is your
favorite BDBL memory?
TD: I still
occasionally read Glandersí multi-part story on the 2005 post-season.
That entire post-season was a lot of fun for me.
BD: What is your
best trade ever? And your worst?
TD: Iíve made so many
trades over the past eight years that Iím having a hard time determining
the best and worst. Acquiring Bonds from Litchfield was a great pick
up. The worst MOVE I ever made was cutting Roy Halladay and Johan
Santana on the SAME Cutdown Day. Great moves, there.
BD: Other than
Glander, what GM would you absolutely hate to see leave the BDBL?
TD: There are a lot
of guys Iíd miss, itís too hard to pick one.
BD: Who is the
craziest character in the BDBL?
TD: This question
should probably be who is the SECOND craziest character because who else
can you pick besides Skizm?
BD: If your
franchise had a Team Hall of Fame, which players would be members?
TD: Barry Bonds,
Randy Johnson, and Roy Oswalt are the definites. Jake Peavy is on the
bubble. Hopefully down the road weíll be able to talk about Ryan Braun,
Jay Bruce, and Lincecum. And I have high hopes for Elijah Dukes and
Super Ronny Cedeno.
BD: Tell us which
MLB team that you feel like your BDBL franchise is the most like.
TD: Tough one. Maybe
the Atlanta Braves as Iíve been pretty lucky with the development of
BD: If you were
running the BDBL as a dictator, what's the first thing you would insist
TD: I would not allow
the use of extreme split players (150+ point differences) and I would
reduce the active rosters to 22 players. I think those changes would go
a long way towards reducing our reliance on platoon freaks.
BD: How has your
overall team-building philosophy changed over the years?
TD: In recent years
Iíve looked more closely at speed and defense. Also, picking so
consistently low in the farm drafts has forced me to look at lower level
players as well as college and international guys.
BD: What has been
the most significant change in the BDBL?
TD: The institution
of the auction. Itís a change I really like.
BD: Name your
favorite "off-the-field" moment from BDBL Weekend or the league forum.
TD: I made it to two
BDBL weekends and had a good time at each. I also have a good time
watching some of the random debates that break out on the forum as it
proves just how diverse the owners here are.
BD: Do you take
all those BDBL trophies for granted, knowing that some teams will never
get one, while others can barely even sniff the post-season?
TD: No I donít. All
three of them are on a shelf in my ďofficeĒ and Iím very proud of all of
them - I think itís a great accomplishment given the level of
competition in this league. However, I had number three checked for
Anthrax as I wasnít sure how Glander would react to this last one.
BD: Looks like you
are just about one year away from turning 40. Will the first 40 years
be the best of your life or the last 40(+)?
TD: Ouch!! Iíll be
39 in April of 2009 and Iím not quite sure where the years went as it
seems like I was 23 just yesterday. Like anyone else Iíve had my share
of ups and downs over the first 40 but itís been a fun and interesting
ride. Iím hoping the next 40 will be the same and Iím hoping to add a
few more BDBL trophies.