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This is good bye......and a thank you

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This is Ray saying good bye in his last article at Fake Teams.....it's been a blast.

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

I announced back in early December that I would be relinquishing my role as the manager of Fake Teams, and it was a tough decision to make. It was tough because I never thought it would come to this. I always saw myself as writing here, and hopefully helping you, our readers, to improve your performance in your fantasy leagues, whether it be fantasy baseball, football, basketball or hockey. I enjoyed offering my thoughts to you on an almost daily basis for the last 8 years or so. It was part of my life for longer than I imagined. Writing for Fake Teams became part of my day....every day. I woke up thinking about fantasy baseball, and went to bed thinking about fantasy baseball....even in the offseason. It was a passion for me, and sharing my thoughts with our readers was a joy. I saw many writers come and go....many good writers come and go. Some have went on to do some really great things at other sites, and one is now the Director of Baseball Operations for the Los Angeles Angels.

When Tyler Blezinski, the founder of SB Nation, asked me to manage the site back in 2008, the site was getting about 800 page views per day, about 20,000 page views per month. Over the years, I built writing teams to cover fantasy baseball year round, and fantasy football, with some fantasy basketball, hockey and golf writers sprinkled in. The goal was to give our readers one place for all of their fantasy sports coverage. As our writers wrote more articles, page views increased. Seeing that, I decided to build a team large enough to offer fantasy articles on a daily basis. As time went on, page views increased to where we were averaging 300,000-400,000 page views per month. We had one peak month with over 1,000,000 page views, if my memory serves me correctly. That was satisfying, as it was proof that readers were coming to Fake Teams for their fantasy coverage, and coming back every day.

While I enjoyed writing for Fake Teams for the last 8 years, my biggest joy was watching the many writers, who I opened the door to writing, go on to bigger and better things. Allowing writers begin their writing careers here and seeing them succeed elsewhere made this job very rewarding. Seeing them leave was not easy. But seeing them succeed made me quickly forget that they left.

Some of the people who jump-started their writing careers here include:

1. Many summers ago, a journalism major came to me asking to write about fantasy baseball while school was out. He was the editor at his college newspaper, and had a passion for writing. He is now the Jets beat writer for the New York Daily News. His name is Seth Walder.

2. Several years ago, when adding fantasy football coverage to Fake Teams, one of the first fantasy football writers I added was Mike Gallagher. He now writes for Rotoworld covering fantasy basketball.

3. Kenneth Arthur joined Fake Teams several years ago, covering fantasy baseball. In addition to writing for Fake Teams from time to time, he now writes for Rolling Stone magazine, Sports on Earth, SB Nation Fantasy, Field Gulls - SB Nation's Seattle Seahawks fan site.

4. Bret Sayre didn't get his start in writing here, but he did write here for a bit, and now runs The Dynasty Guru site and is Managing Editor at Baseball Prospectus.

5. Craig Goldstein began writing at Fake Teams several years ago and is now an editor at Baseball Prospectus.

6. One of our former writers, Andrew Ball, who also wrote for SB Nation's saber-slanted site, Beyond the Boxscore, is now Director of Baseball Operations for the Los Angeles Angels.

6. Nabae Asfar began his writing career here at Fake Teams covering fantasy soccer and football and is now the Marketing Director and Senior Editor at Up All Night News.

7. Daniel Kelley has been writing on these pages for several years now, but is now the fantasy football editor at Pro Football Focus, and is also a fantasy columnist at the Washington Post.

There are many more that I am missing, but you get my point.

I want to thank SB Nation, Tyler Blezinski, Kevin Lockland, Eric Simon and Justin Bopp for allowing me to write and manage here for the last eight years. They allowed me to have a presence in the fantasy community, which is ever growing, and allowed me to be a participant in several Tout Wars fantasy baseball experts drafts. I could never have participated in the Tour Wars drafts without them allowing me to manage and write here.

I want to give a special thanks to Jason Hunt, without him, the site would have never grown to where it is today. He joined Fake Teams about 7 years ago and was our first fantasy baseball prospect writer. He offered to take on the role of managing the fantasy baseball prospect coverage here at Fake Teams, managing a staff of writers focused on prospects, and did a fantastic job. He is no longer writing here at Fake Teams, but I would be remiss if I didn't send out a thank you to him.

Finally, I want to thank you, our readers. I hope I was able to help you over the last eight years. My goal was to offer my thoughts on players and strategies to help you be successful fantasy owners. It was a passion for me. I have to admit, over the years, whenever I received a compliment or thank you from a reader, it made me want to write even more. I never expected a thank you from any reader, but when I did, it motivated me to see where I could take the site year after year.

Taking over the role of managing Fake Teams is Peter Rogers, who comes from Read Optional, where he was a football writer. Please join me in welcoming Peter to Fake Teams. I am sure he will do a great job here. You will be hearing from Peter in the coming days, as I believe he will start his journey here on Monday.

Thanks again, for making fantasy baseball writing a passion for me. I had a blast interacting with our writers and readers every day.

You can find me on Twitter at @RotoRay_LAD. I tweet about a lot of things there, but please don't hesitate to stop over and say hello.....and, yes, please ask fantasy baseball questions!!