A new tradition is following suit, as the month will also see the year's top fantasy players compete for a grand prize in the 2008 World Series of Fantasy, beginning Oct. 1.
The second annual World Series of Fantasy features the champions and top performers from MLB.com's four season-long fantasy games: Beat the Streak, Home Run Beat the Streak, MLB.com Survivor and the 2008 Open. The winner will claim the WSFB trophy and a trip to the 2009 All-Star Game.
Last year, the eight finalists competed in a head-to-head fantasy matchup under Open rules, with each participant getting to draft a new team as he advanced to the next round. Ross Wigdor emerged as the champion from that tournament, thanks to a strategy that netted him most of the starters from Boston's World Series champion squad.
This time, the field has expanded to 12 finalists, and the format will follow the rules of MLB.com's popular Beat the Streak game: Participants will select one player for each day of games to collect a hit. If that player comes through with at least one hit, then the streak continues into the next day. If not, the participant has to start from scratch. The grand prize will go to the finalist who accumulates the longest streak during the postseason.
Competing in the World Series of Fantasy are: Robert Paradise, Josh Frewerd, Peter Costa, Josh Taylor, Bassman, Jayson Werra, Jerry Mohr, Kevin Lanphear, Crystal Glines, Paul Cartwright, Ben Worthen and Justin Fluet.
In addition, Dennis Eckersley, Curtis Granderson, Ernie Johnson and other TBS analysts will be competing with the experts for fun, though they will not be eligible for prizes if they win.
Those who regularly play MLB.com's fantasy games might recognize some of the names in the pool of finalists. Paradise made his way into the headlines under the screen name spooky93 thanks to his success in the regular-season version of Beat the Streak. Though he fell short in his attempt to reach 57 games and be eligible for the $1 million grand prize, Paradise still managed to rack up a season-high 48-game streak.
Frewerd blew away the competition in Survivor with an incredible 36 straight games of picking a winning team. Prior to his run, the single-season record was 24 games.
And while Costa has yet to be the feature of a story that breaks down his methods, he deserves mention for winning the 2008 Open, MLB.com's weekly head-to-head fantasy game. The Cape Cod, Mass., native overcame a series of personal tragedies and teamed up with a friend to create the winning squad.
Of course, while these three finished with the top marks in Beat the Streak, Survivor and the 2008 Open, they're competing with other contestants who enjoyed tremendous success in these games as well. In other words, the World Series of Fantasy isn't going to be a cake walk for anybody.
Which finalist will find a way to continue his or her regular-season luck with the longest hitting streak of the postseason?
Keep posted to the leaderboard on MLB.com throughout the month, and find out who gets to enjoy a dream finish to a fantastic fantasy season.