BAT 2004 home/Rotisserie Picks Page

2004 Boston-Area Tournament
2-4 April 2004
Scott's Rotisserie Contest
(Click here to see the ever-growing list of Rotisserie Picks)
(Click here to see the Rotisserie winners after the event)

North America's favorite Rotisserie Contest is back again! SCRABBLE® players, friends, and fans everywhere are invited to enter this popular handicapping competition in conjunction with the 2004 Boston Area SCRABBLE®Tournament. Last year the entries and prize money reached very lofty levels yet again, with $660 in cash given away (the year before was even higher). We expect another major turnout this year, so don't miss out. Join in the fun and show off your handicapping skills by picking the BAT winners!

The rules are as simple as 1-2-3:
1. Choose two players each in the Premier, A, and B divisions for your entry, or "team."
2. In each division, one of your selections must be from the "top portion" of the division, and one from the "bottom portion." Those portions will be clearly marked on the entrant list.
3. For each game won by one of your players, your team earns 1 point. The team that racks up the most points wins!

If your picks do well, you do well! The Rotisserie entry that collects the most wins will take home a generous first prize; the total number of entries will determine additional prizes (we'll announce early in the weekend how the pot is being divided up).

Pick your friends, pick your favorites, or, if you're feeling confident, pick yourself! If your selections pan out, you'll be rewarded with fame, glory gobs of cash, and a permanent place in the annals of BAT Rotisserie lore.

The preferred payment option is to send money via PayPal to ( from a checking account only, as a fee is charged to the recipient of credit card transactions). Monies can also be collected on site in Westford before games begin on the evening of 2 April 2004. Please note that remote entries will be cut off earlier. If your payment is not received before the event begins, your entry will be voided. The sooner you send your picks in, the better. Entries should be sent to me, Scott Pianowski, at *and*

Stay tuned to this page, as we'll continue to update it with details, a full list of "teams", and complete results!

Read on for answers to all the questions you've been dying to ask...

Rotisserie FAQ

1. I'm not playing at the Boston Area Tournament this year. Can I still participate in the Rotisserie?

Yes, absolutely; we're always seeking as many "remote" players as possible, to give the pool a truly national (if not international) feel. If your friends or family want to enter, they're welcome to join us as well. Of course, you are heartily encouraged to play in the tournament if you can!

2. What is the cost and how do I pay?

Each entry costs $10, in US funds please. The strongly preferred method of payment is via PayPal, a simple and secure way to transmit funds electronically (; my paypal address is If you will be attending the BAT, you may pay in person prior to the event if absolutely necessary. If you are a remote entry, acceptable arrangements must be made to pay in advance. We do trust everyone, but hey, good luck finding a Las Vegas sportsbook that agrees to let you pay your bet after the game.

3. How much of the entry fees are going towards prizes?

90 percent. The overwhelming response to this contest in recent years has made it a victim of it's own success (especially in the Rod MacNeil era). Quite simply, it takes a tremendous amount of time and effort to run. Between all the planning, organizing, promoting, coordinating, e-mailing, updating, tallying, and responding to the always-friendly inquiries of concerned participants, it's a handful. This small administrative cut has the approval of the directors; it was initially instituted in 2003.

4. Do I have to pick myself?

We think it's more fun if you include yourself on your team, though you are not obligated to do so. Incidentally, you'll also find it's quite an ego boost when other people pick you for their teams; that's just one reason why this is so much darn fun.

5. Can I have more than one Rotisserie entry (sheet)?

In past years, players have often picked two sheets, allowing them to cover more bases and root for more players. Trust us, it's addictive! And even if you play twice, it's still a bargain at $20. If you want to play more than twice, we won't stop you. If you want to play five or more sheets though, we'll refer you to Gamblers Anonymous or force you to watch the Pete Rose SportsCentury piece over-and-over for 24 hours.

6. Who won the Rotisserie last year?

The defending champion is Frank Tangredi, who wasn't content to win the A Division alone in 2003 - he copped the Roto first prize as well and the handsome $300 payout. Frank's final answer of Joel Sherman, Joe Weinike, himself, Sal Piro, Elaine Patterson and Steve Moniz got the job done. For a list of last year's 10 rotisserie prizes (we paid five spots and had a couple of ties), see 2003 roto winners here. If you know your way around Sherrie Saint John's web site, you can easily find Roto winners prior to last year with a few points and clicks.

7. Why isn't every division included in the Rotisserie?

While we do consider all divisions important, it's a fact of life that people are most familiar with players in the higher divisions. Thus the contest has the broadest appeal this way. Besides, it's more fun to just keep this simple for everyone. It's tough enough just choosing 6 players!

8. Ok, so how will I know how my team is doing?

Round-by-round standings updates at the event will be impossible, but so long as the tournament results are available at the end of each day, I'll make sure the roto results are tabulated and, if possible, posted somewhere in the playing area. I'll also be keeping CGP informed as well with regular updates.

9. When and how will the winners be paid?

For the same reasons stated above, prizewinners cannot be accurately (or carefully) determined in time for the awards ceremony. We want to make sure we get it right! Once the official results are confirmed and tallied, arrangements will be made to send winnings (via PayPal or by check) to the winners within 3 days. At which point, top prizewinners are encouraged to treat the entire BAT staff to dinner and a round of drinks (okay, that's not mandatory).

10. Why isn't Rod MacNeil still running this?

After a wonderful run as the best Rotisserie organizer in BAT history (sorry Alan Frank), Rod has respectfully stepped down this year so that he can focus on preparing for the tournament, not to mention his life outside of SCRABBLE. He's also shooting for a good, solid 5 hours of sleep per night through the weekend, if possible. Rod's incredibly high standard of running this contest will probably never be equaled, but I do promise to run an efficient, fair, and honest contest for all the good handicappers out there. MacNeil was the Pedro Martinez of this Roto contest - I'm merely shooting to the be the Derek Lowe of Roto. (Note: Rod did offer his assistance as I begin to draw up this year's contest, and he gave me generous carte blanche to borrow as needed from his 2003 FAQ, which is what I've done here. It's not stealing, folks. I'm borrowing his eloquent words with permission.)

11. Why are the upper and lower halves of Division A not equal in size?

There are two goals with setting an arbitrary rotisserie line for Division A (and Division B for that matter), rather than having it be a constantly changing line that simply splits the divisions in half. . .
1, it makes it easier for people to make "early" Rotisserie picks, without worrying about if the line has changed or not with respect to new entries, and
2, it allows for us to attempt to break up the divisions in such a way that the pool will receive the most unique amount of entries. Time will tell if I've set the line in the right place (this must be how Vegas feels on a daily basis); in the meantime, know that 1750 and 1500 will stay in place, no matter how the complexion of Divisions A and B go on to change.

12. What if one of my picks drops out late or changes divisions late?

If one of your players can't make it to the event via some last-minute mishap or change of plans, that Rotisserie selection will automatically default to the highest-seeded player in that pool of players (per the March 1 ratings). However, if you learn that one of your picks has been forced to cancel and you can notify me of a re-pick *before the tournament starts*, I'll allow you to alter your team in this way. Once the tournament begins, no one will be allowed to change rotisserie selections.

The above guideline will also be followed if players switch divisions. If you pick Sally Scrabbler and she happens to move up or down divisions, your individual pick of her is no longer valid and will be deleted in favor of a default selection (or you can contact me and make an alternate pick yourself if you do it before the beginning of the tournament). Note that this rule applies no matter which direction the player in question may be moving, up or down.

13. Anything else I should know?

Void were prohibited. Should any controversy of any kind arise, the final decision of tournament director Sherrie Saint John is final. Your mileage may vary. Roto side affects may include insomnia, headaches, double vision, fever and acute endgame errors. Play early, play often, and have fun.

Contact Scott Pianowski at or

BAT 2004 home/Rotisserie Picks Page