Interview with the creators of “Baseball Boyfriend”

The new CBS fantasy game Baseball Boyfriend got quite a bit of attention online yesterday, and we posted about it here. I got an e-mail in my inbox this morning from the creators of Baseball Boyfriend, asking if I’d like an interview with them. Of course, I jumped all over this, and here’s my brief interview with Frank and Missy, creators of Baseball Boyfriend.

Q: When initiating the Baseball Boyfriend concept, did you imagine getting all of the negative feedback you’re currently getting from both fantasy baseball players and female baseball fans?

A: The concept is actually old to us. My wife and her friends have been playing baseball boyfriend for about three years. It’s more about getting together with your friends and watching a game than anything else. They all loved it, so we thought we would let others play as well.

Watching the twitter feeds, there seems to be the mis-conception that we were trying to dumb down fantasy baseball for girls. That’s not the case at all. It’s really a side game that you can play along with your normal league. To play at all, you need to already have a fantasy baseball team set up. Then, on a daily basis, you can pick one player from your current team that you think will put up the best stats for the day. In our opinion, it takes your current game and makes it more complex.

So no, we didn’t because it was conceived by a women and played with her friends, plus adds a different dimension to the already existing fantasy player’s game.

Q: If you could start things all over, would you do anything different with the rollout of the program?

A: We still like the concept, and the humor that is floating around about it. We did show this to a number of women ahead of time, but we would have shown it to more. The ladies that played it before, all saw the humor in it.

Q: Did you shop this idea anywhere aside from CBS, or were they your sole partner in this? Did they have any concerns about the design?

A: To clarify, CBS is not a partner. CBSSports is providing an API that allows developers to create apps within the fantasy baseball market. We’re using their api to power our stats. You can read more about their app market here: http://developer.cbssports.com

It’s like Farmville is to Facebook. Facebook provided an API allowing developers to add apps to their site.

About the design, we didn’t think that lined notebook paper with doodles would be offensive. Until this year, we’ve kept track of everything on a simple pad of paper. I thought having the site look like our paper was just fun.

Q: Are there any plans to bend to the complaints of fans and change the name, while keeping the general idea?

A: No. We like the name, Baseball Boyfriend. If you search in twitter for “baseball boyfriend”, before yesterday, you’ll find hundreds of tweets by women referring to their favorite players as their Baseball Boyfriend.

Q: If the concept is successful, are you going to roll it out in other sports, possibly with a different name?

Yes. If people enjoy this, we will likely release it for football, hockey, and basketball. For us, this year was about testing the concept with a large audience to find out how we can improve it, before getting into other sports.

———

So there you have it. The creators, Frank and Missy, seem really into their creation and didn’t appear to realize they were going to rub fans the wrong way with their design. Like I said yesterday, I think the concept is pretty good…the execution and design are where I’m finding my issues.

About Joe Lucia

I'm the managing editor of Awful Announcing and the news editor of The Comeback. I also made The Outside Corner a thing for six seasons.

Quantcast