Write an Effective Game Recap
Written by Michael Naclerio
Fantasy owners are always looking for ways to dress up content. Game recaps can get old fast, but with the proper touch – and these 10 techniques – fantasy writers can keep them fresh and relevant (tips courtesy of Nick Raducanu of FantasyPros911.com and Howard Bender of FantasyAlarm).
1. Watch as many of the games that night as possible
Bender: If you can pull a nugget of relevant information that might not be on the highlight reels but could/should be for fantasy purposes, then your readers will love you for it.
2. If you can't watch the games themselves, watch a recap show
Bender: You can get the basics of the game info from watching Baseball Tonight, SportsCenter, or MLB Network's Quick Pitch.
3. Research is more important than the writing
Raducanu: Writing box score bits can be as simple or as in-depth as you want, but I think there's a direct correlation between how helpful a piece is to how much time you put into researching peripheral information.
4. Read every box score and take a look at leader boards
Raducanu: like to flip through box scores (as I have every day since I was in middle school) and then go look at a "Daily Leaders" page for that day so that I can sort through various categories and write down some of the best/worst performers of that day.
5. Peripheral information is as important as the box score itself
Raducanu: Don't get me wrong, solely looking at box scores can be extremely helpful but it's not the most fruitful exercise if you don't look at those stats in context (for instance, an 0-5 game from a left-handed hitter that can't hit lefties isn't a huge deal if he faced Cliff Lee in four of those at-bats).
6. Include analysis don't just regurgitate facts
Bender: While you're not just regurgitating facts but adding analysis as well, the recap piece is all about quick-reading bullet points that highlight the action of the day and you need to study each individual game to make sure you're highlighting the most pertinent information.
7. Include injuries, lineup changes, batting order changes and managerial substitutions
Raducanu: I always like to get up-to-date information on player injuries, lineup changes, etc. from the beat writers that know more about these teams and players than any of us fantasy geeks could ever dream of.
8. Don't just Report injuries and lineup changes, offer solutions
Bender: Once the highlights are done, then it's time to discuss the relevant injuries, players to watch for as replacements and how and for how long fantasy teams will be affected. Don't just report an injury -- offer up a solution.
9. Don't try and do too much
Bender: You can't cover everything. Unless you're going to write a daily column of 3000 words you have to filter out a lot of information. Not everyone will be thrilled that you failed to mention that Chris Getz went 3-for-4 and stole his first base in over a month, but you have to draw a line somewhere.
10. Find a way to stand out
Bender: Keep it light, keep it fun, keep it informative. Daily recap pieces are a great way to build a following so make sure you find a way to stand out.