Suggestions for a league with simple and easy rules for those people who do not want to play a complicated, complex and time-consuming game, but still want to enjoy fantasy baseball.
The most common reply that people who play fantasy football give when I ask them why they do not play fantasy baseball is that baseball takes too much time. Football is once a week, they say. Baseball is everyday; there are daily scores to follow; too many players to pay attention to; there are many rules to remember.
To these people I respond that baseball leagues can be set up with simple and easy rules. One of my local leagues, one that is dear to my heart, is such a league. The league was set-up over 20 years ago and it has been quite successful in providing fun and satisfaction to its managers. I want to share its rules with you should you be interested in setting up such a league with your friends. There is nothing complicated here. What follows is a blue-print for a fantasy baseball league for people who have a social life.
But first, I must warn the traditionalist: do not read any further. With that behind me, here are the basics:
- A new team is built from scratch every year; do not make it a keeper league.
- Use snake draft method and not auction.
- Make it a mixed AL and NL league.
- And now the biggie: you ready for it? Do not use pitchers. Each team consists of hitters only. Pitchers are a pain in the neck.
- Team composition adheres to the game of baseball; the simplest team could consists of one C,1B,2B,3B,SS and three OFs. That’s 8 players per team. Eligibility for a player’s position is whatever Mastersball tells you. Do not tinker with that. If you and your friends want more than a 8 players per team add as a DH a 9th player who is eligible to play at any position. You want 10 players per team? Add another outfielder. You want 11 players per team? Subtract the outfielder and add a corner infield guy who is eligible at first and third and a middle infield guy who is eligible at second and shorts stop. Be flexible.
- Split the draft in two: active roster is selected first, followed by the reserve roster. Allow picking players that are eligible only at the positions not filled in yet on the roster. For example, let’s assume that each team must have one but no more than one catcher on the active roster. Once a team has a catcher, no more catchers can be picked up by that team during the active roster portion of the draft. Each team should draft a reserve roster of at least one player for each eligible position.
- Roster changes are allowed once a week only and free agents are obtained once a week in a reverse order of the standings.
- Points: use for point categories what an average spectator sees at a stadium while watching a game. People see runs, hits, runs batted in, home runs, stolen basis, intentional or not walks, sacrifice fly balls, sacrifice hits, hit by pitch. Have some of these point categories for your league, but you do not have to have them all.
- Scoring: Runs and RBIs score the highest, for example 4 points. All other categories should be a single point. Keep it simple.
I can assure you that if you set up a league by following the above blue-print you and you friends will enjoy it. Let me know if you have any questions. Post a comment and I will reply.