First Pitch Arizona - Day 1

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REMINDER: SCHEDULE IS TENTATIVE AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE 

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2022

12:35 PM: AFL ballgames (on your own)
     Surprise at Glendale
     Scottsdale at Peoria

4:00 PM: FPAZ22 Check-in at Hotel Lobby
Pick up your registration packet, which includes AFL game ticketing info, weekend program and all the information you'll need for a successful weekend. If you didn't submit your vaccination card and sign the liability waiver through our online portal ahead of time, you'll need to complete a negative rapid COVID-19 test before you we can check you in. (Refer to our COVID-19 section if you have questions.) The table will be staffed until 6:00 pm.

5:30 PM: Welcome Reception at Sloan Park
Our annual informal ice-breaker meets an hour before gametime at one of the Party Decks at Sloan Park in Mesa, right across the street from the hotel. Rub shoulders with presenters and attendees over appetizers and a cash bar. For our first timers, this is a chance to get a quick "lay of the land" of the weekend experience to come in our First Timers' Meetup as you'll get to know FPAZ veterans and speakers who will answer all your questions. For veterans, the perfect place to reconnect with old friends and make some new ones via that legendary First Pitch comaraderie! Then grab a seat (if you wish) and take in the weekend's first ballgame, Salt River at Mesa, starting at 6:35.
     Salt River at Mesa (6:35 pm)

9:45 PM: Thursday Post-Game Hangouts
The day's ballgames are over, but the night is young! Optional meetups and sessions back at the hotel include:

  • The Podcast Room, session 1: Several popular fantasy baseball podcasts will be doing epidodes from First Pitch Arizona, live from the Podcast Room. And you can be a part. Each will include interactive segments with attendees, special guests, and of course, plenty of baseball chatter. Catch one or catch 'em all! Thursday schedule:
    • 9:45-11pm: Beat the Shift (Ariel Cohen)
  • 9:45-10:45 pm Breakout sessions
    • 2022 Retro SpeedDraft: 12 speaker participants; 10 seconds per pick, 17-player rosters, competiting for a roto crown using 2022 player stats. Surprises will abound in this fast-moving, roster-building good time! 
    • Getting the most out of BaseballHQ.com: Whether you're a new subscriber or a BHQ veteran, there's a lot of tools to use on the site. BHQ staffers (Matt Cederholm and TBA) will be on hand to walk you through the features and answer questions. 
  • Or, just enjoy good baseball (or other) talk over cold beverages of your choice at the indoor/outdoor hotel meeting places

 

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2022

8:00 AM:  Welcome and Announcements
Brent Hershey & Ray Murphy (BaseballHQ)

8:15 AM:  Opening presentation
Brent Hershey & Ray Murphy (BaseballHQ.com) and Ron Shandler (Baseball Forecaster)

8:45 AM:  Arizona Fall League Scouting Report 
Find out about the players you need to watch at the parks this weekend, with insightful multimedia scouting reports. Identify the most upwardly-mobile AFL prospects in this entertaining, rapid-fire panel session to kick things off.
PANELISTS: Eric Longenhagen (FanGraphs); TBA
MODERATOR: Geoff Pontes (Baseball America)

10:10 AM:  Friday Morning Breakouts
Choose one of several interactive breakout sessions from specialists who want to hear from you.

  • Prospect Q&A: All your prospect questions, answered, with Eric Longenhagen (FanGraphs), Geoff Pontes (Baseball America) and Chris Blessing (BaseballHQ)
  • The 2022 NFBC Year in Review: Learn how top players in this format fared this season, and how they are preparing for 2023. With Vlad Sedler (FTNFantasy), Steve Weimer (BaseballHQ), Dave Potts (RotoGrinders) 
  • 2023 Injury Preview/Q&A: Which injured players will be ready for next season, and injuries could linger, with Matt Cederholm (BaseballHQ)  

11:25 AM: Lunch (on your own)
Congregate with fellow attendees before the ballgame at a host of local eateries (list provided in the information packet).

12:35 PM: AFL afternoon ballgames 
     Mesa at Peoria (attendee game)
     Salt River at Surprise

  • 1pm: Ballpark Q&As: Specialists in several topics will be set up in different seating sections of Peoria Stadium to field questions or just chat informally throughout the game. Possible subjects include Scoresheet baseball, Strat-o-Matic baseball, and more.

4:15 PM: Friday Afternoon Breakouts (choose 1; each runs until 5:00 pm; back at Sheraton Mesa Wrigleyville)

  • Changing Times, Changing Rules: When looking to freshen things up in a league, sometimes a rules tweak or new scoring categories can do the trick. Explore adding more pitchers to your rosters, changing to Svs + Holds/2 ... or anything else you may bring. The challenges and rewards of mixing it up.  
    MODERATOR: Ron Shandler (Baseball Forecaster); PANELISTS: Peter Kreutzer (The Fantasy Baseball Guide), Tim McLeod (Prospect361), Todd Zola (Mastersball)
  • Looking for Consistency: A New Way to Assess Pitcher Volatility: Alex Fast (PitcherList.com) shares thoughts on how we often neglect consistency in making our SP roster decisions and introduces a new metric to help account for volatility in our drafts.
  • Dynasty Prep: The 2023 First Year Player Draft: College players? Prepsters? International signees?  Jesse Roche (Baseball Prospectus) explores where to find the best values in next spring's dynasty drafts.  
  • Advanced Fantasy Baseball Excel Workshop: Want to take your fantasy baseball Excel knowledge to the next level? Ariel Cohen (Beat the Shift Podcast) and Patrick Davitt (BaseballHQ) will work through several advanced and important fantasy baseball constructs including calculating Z-scores, visualizing ADP, linking datasets and converting ADP to an auction dollar equivalent. The session will touch on several Excel tools such as concatenation codes, conditional formatting, form boxes, key excel functions, array formulas, and many more tips and tricks! Plus a Q&A for your Excel questions. Bring your laptop for immediate for hands-on practice.

5:09 PM: World Series Game 6 Watch Party (tentative; still under development)

6:35 PM: AFL Ballgame
     Glendale at Scottsdale

10:00 PM: Friday Post-Game Hangouts
The day's ballgames are over, but the night is young! Optional meetups and informal activities back at the hotel include:

  • The Podcast Room, session 2: Several popular fantasy baseball podcasts will be doing epidodes from First Pitch Arizona, live from the Podcast Room. And you can be a part. Each will include interactive segments with attendees, special guests, and of course, plenty of baseball chatter. Catch one or catch 'em all! Friday schedule:
    • 10:00-11:15pm: Bubba and the Bloom (Brian Entrekin, Ryan Bloomfield)
  • 9:30-10:30pm: Friday Night Breakouts
    • Excel Tips for Your Fantasy Team: Use Excel just for work or the family budget? This open seminar is for you! Bring your laptop and your questions about using Excel in fantasy baseball, and hosts Patrick Davitt (BaseballHQ/BaseballHQ Radio) and Ariel Cohen (Beat the Shift podcast) will show you how the pros get it done!
    • Deep-League Pitchers of Interest for 2023: Who are the undervalued starters worth paying attention to in 2023? In this deep-league dive, especially relevant for those in AL- and NL-only leagues, Michael Govier (FTN Fantasy), Jeff Zimmerman (FanGraphs), Nick Pollack (PitcherList) and Chris Clegg (Fantrax) point you to some underappreicated gems to stash away for next year's drafts. 
  • Or, just enjoy good baseball (or other) talk over cold beverages of your choice at the indoor/outdoor hotel meeting places!

 

REMINDER: SCHEDULE IS TENTATIVE AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE