Thread: Stage Four

It doesn’t exist. But we keep hoping.

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Been pushing for awhile in my home league to just make the 23rd spot a "swing spot" that can be used for a hitter or pitcher.  It's a half-step that acknowledges the reality Peter notes below.

Phil Ponebshek Texpope

I think there is a subtle change in the FA pool for pitchers when you go to 10 pitchers in an AL or NL league. With 9 pitchers there are always safe as milk relievers with decent strikeout rates available. With 10 pitchers in any given week the best available guys are LOOGYS like Oliver Perez. The 12 extra pitchers sucks up the safe as milk talent. Makes it much more challenging to determine who might be helpful from week to week.

Peter Kreutzer Rotoman

With all the movement in today's 25-man MLB squads, there seems to be a replacement level hitter or two available most weeks. Plain Wheeler Dealer League (AL, 1991, now 5x5) has been 13 and 10 for at least 5 years. It does not change the FA pool for pitchers, nor prices at auction, as those pitchers at the end usually are $1.

In our league, no active player may be kept on minors/injured list more than two weeks, though one of our owners takes great pleasure in keeping a player (or two) on that reserve squad to the limit. 

David Molyneaux NeauxBrainers ()

That works for me, though I think my scheme would end up with the same players rostered. Though maybe enforcing two Catchers would make a difference. I'm fine either way, but 13 rather than 14 hitters won't really improve the FA pool much, but it will mean one fewer bum you have to carry.

Peter Kreutzer Rotoman

As for the reduced hitters, Peter spelling it out has given me an idea. Two C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, Four OF, IF, UT, UT.  This is one extra IF (any), one extra OF, and then two open hitting spots.  

My league's current free agents are 7 Catchers, 1 2B, 2 3B, 3 SS, 7 OF, and Dylan Moore 2/3/S/O, and 81 pitchers.  And, that's with 14 hitters and 10 pitchers active.

Eugene Freedman EugeneFreed

We like 10 pitchers, and think going to 13 hitters would be even better. I don't know that anyone has talked about this, but why not C 1B 2B SS 3B OF OF OF UT UT UT UT UT?

Peter Kreutzer Rotoman

One thought on roster construction: The MLB is going to 26-man rosters next year. While this could, in theory, lead to some 14-pitcher rosters, it will probably mean anywhere from 6-to-10 extra hitters in both the AL and NL.  That should lessen a lot of the pressure that comes with carrying 14 hitters. By the way, the American Dreams League went to 10 pitchers about five years ago. And 10 pitchers have not in any discernible way affected pricing. 

Walter Shapiro WShapiro

We had similar problems in our 33 year old League. We changed from 26 teams with 23 active roster slots to 10 teams with 46 active rosters. Went from Freeze Rosters with 15 MLB and 10 Farm to 15 MLB and 6 Farm. A fantastic Freeze Roster alone no longer automatically beats any other tactics. We're an Auction league with a Salary Cap on Auction Day. We've remained a General Manager league rather than a daily manager of lineups. We have no bench. With 460 active players instead of 598 there are more players available during the season which has promoted more activity and fewer Ghost teams. We also split into 2 divisions, which we should have done when we had so many teams. We now have 3 winners out of a possible 10 each season- 2 division winners and a play-off winner. Lastly, we changed our scoring categories to have more counting ones and less rate ones which has encouraged teams to keep playing- adding starters, filling reserved players to have more slots pumping out stats each day.  Quality of owners beats quantity of owners. It's easier to find 10 active ones than 26.

James Morgan jem1776

Our league, also old/4x4/AL-only has gotten a little dry.  We had a major dumping crisis in the late 90s (long story), and BANNED dumping.  If you trade a guy during the season, he's not keepable.  Trades are few and far between.

We have recently expanded DLs to 6 (from 3), starting next year; we have 3-man reserve lists.  I was not particularly in favor -- the FA pool is already thin.

I have suggested a jubilee draft, to ZERO enthusiasm.  

Mike Dean TMU2009

We haven't had similar trouble.  Our league always has learning curve, but of our two newest franchises, one made the money in their fourth year, followed by a championship, and a third place finish.  They have a shot tow in again this year for four straight money finishes.  The other newer team, in their fourth year is also contending for the championship.

One solution is to not allow so many protections and to make turnover happen faster.  We only allow 5 major league keepers plus two minor leaguers (or more minor leaguers at the expense of major leaguers).  That helps b/c the draft matters more than keeping 10-12 or even more per team.  

Plus, we force option/extension decision in the first offseason a player is signed/activated.  This may be even more critical.  It creates much faster turn over of players.  The trend is to shorter contracts to compete with all of the teams with cheaper option players.  Only guys like Alvarez, Vlad, and Eloy will be signed longer this year. Biggio and others will only get option years.

I think the pyramid protection system helps too.  Give an extra keeper or two to 5th and 6th to encourage people to play for those spots.

Finally, the roster construction issues can be resolved.  We added a 10th pitcher 4 years ago.  We have considered removing a hitter.  The balance is tough though.  From where do you take the spot?  Four OF seems wrong and would lead to extra OF free agents without helping free up hitters elsewhere.  

The only other option is a redraft league, but for a home league, that eliminates any feeling of continuity and definitely removes the incentive to pick up players and make trades for teams in the bottom half.  We did no trading for protections for a couple years and it lead to 1/3 of the teams just giving up in July and not paying attention at all.

Eugene Freedman EugeneFreed
Aug 9