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Keepers, Dynasties, Player protectio, etc.

Keepers, Dynasties, Player protectio, etc.

Postby Fantasy Sports Genie » Mon Apr 30, 2007 3:40 pm

So as the commish of a long-standing keeper league, and also an engineer working on Yahoo's fantasy sports, I'm curious what sorts of rules or systems other people use to handle protections in their keeper leagues, and how those rules are reflected in their draft procedures. I'll describe below how my personal league works, for better or worse, but I'd be curious to get a survey of the different systems to see how similar or different they are from each other.

When my league started, we did something really crude like, "Thou shalt keep 7 guys each year." As you'd guess, this led to pretty static conditions. The best players never reentered the league until they weren't good anymore. Good teams tended to stay at the top. And so on.

Eventually, we had one year where we drafted from scratch with a system in place to assign value to players. Initial values were based on draft position. I don't remember how we did it specifically, but it was along the lines of, "Players taken in the first 2 rounds count as 4 "years of service". Guys taken in rounds 3 through 5 count as 3 "years of service". Guys taken in rounds 6 through 9 count as 2 YoS. Guys taken in rounds 10 through 14 count as 1 YoS. Everyone else has 0 initial cost." At the end of each season, every owner protects 20 "years of service". Any player who is protected has his YoS cost increase by 1. As an additional weird option, the winner in our league only gets to protect 8 YoS. A player's cost resets any time he:
a) is not protected after a season
b) clears waivers during a season

Having run with this system for about 5 years or so now, we're pretty pleased with it. It has accomplished a few of our desired goals:
- The good players eventually cycle back through the player pool
- It makes for interesting currency when teams "playing for the present" are dealing with teams "playing for the future"
- It has at least presented the worse teams with opportunity to improve, though some haven't taken much advantage of that opportunity heh

Oh. So the other trick to all this is "how do protections impact your draft". In our case, our system leads to pretty awkward rules around drafting. We allow trading of picks in rounds 1 through 10, and don't let you protect more than (roster size - 10) players to ensure every owner HAS at least 10 picks. It doesn't necessarily mean that each manager will have drafted 10 players at that point, because they could have traded the pick away, but it does provide some sort of "conservation of picks" in that you can't basically trade away picks you never would have used yourself because of your protections.

After the 10 full rounds of picks, there is no guarantee in our league that any round will have one pick per team, as teams start to fill their roster. So for instance, this past year the last 6 or so picks in the draft were made by 2 teams who didn't protect many people and hadn't managed to trade for extra picks.

So that's what we do. We designed that ourselves, so I doubt anyone else does the same thing. What else is out there?
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Postby chadlincoln » Mon Apr 30, 2007 3:54 pm

Obviously, you're not running this league through Yahoo. I wish they had those capabilities to keep contracts/$$$ values but you aren't there yet. Where do you host your league to do that?

Most of the leagues I'm in now turned to dynasty format where you keep everyone. It's easy. Everyone knows who they're keeping. It was too complicated to do an offline draft on a message board then load the results into a Yahoo league that drafted offline. We didn't use the online draft on Yahoo because we cannot prepick players in different rounds. I know in Plus leagues we could preload players, but we couldn't choose the round in which they were chosen. Also, we expanded our roster spots to 30 giving managers the option to have some sort of a minor league roster.

We use to do our league where you kept five players and snake drafted with last place going first.

Also, here is a link to a league with some in-depth rules. ... /Rules.htm
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Postby xeifrank » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:06 pm

We run our keeper league through Yahoo. The first year we did a live draft via Yahoo, in subsequent years we do our draft offline then upload the rosters manually to our Yahoo league. The way our protection system works, is first of all you can keep no more than 8 players. If you want to keep a player, he gets slotted into the following years draft in the same round he was originally picked in. You can keep a player up to three extra years after he was drafted. If you keep a player for three years, he gets slotted up 2 rounds from his original draft slot and slotted up 1 round for keeping him for two additional years and kept in the same round for keeping him one additional year. Therefore, a player you pick in the first round can only be kept for one additional year, a player picked in the second round can only be kept for two additional years and a player drafted in the third round or later can be kept for up to three additional years. If you have two or more players slotted into the same round, you just move one of them down. We have what is called a collision formula that takes care of this. We use the traditional 14/9 (hitters/pitchers 5x5) format and allow owners to draft players not in the Yahoo database, but they must keep an empty bench spot for that player unless dropped during the season. Once the season begins, we follow Yahoo rules and if there ever is a need for a new rule, we have a league vote. The following years draft is a reverse snake draft of the previous years standings. If you have a keeper player slotted in a draft round, your pick is skipped that round. There is a penalty for dropping players signed to long term contracts before their last year, it amounts to moving a late round pick to the end of the draft.
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Postby Rounders » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:17 pm

Our league does a straight 5 keepers which become picks 1-5 for the team. A team can choose to keep less and take the pick instead (i.e. keep 3 and pick in the 4th and 5th round from the players that weren't kept). This was very convenient since Yahoo added their ability to add up to 10 rounds of keepers. I would like to assign a draft round to the players, but other members in my league don't spend as much time on the stuff as I do, and they like to keep it simple.
It is also easier this way as the commish since Yahoo doesn't allow you to enter players in different rounds. And I did an offline a couple years back, and Yahoo's interface for adding players in from an offline draft was horrible (took me an hr or 2 to add them in). It may have changed since then, but that turned me off to the idea of offline drafts.
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Postby in10s » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:20 pm

We use contracts and $$ values:

-Each year can keep up to 15 players
-For players kept, rules (see below) set their $$ value
-Auction occurs, cap is $260, including value of players kept, so end of auction and everyone has $260 spent on a combination of new players and keepers.
-First year of contact is at auction value
-Second year of contract is at auction value
-third year is option year. Can keep player one year at auction value and then must release, or sign to long term contract and add $5 to value for two year contact, $10 for three year contract. Must release after long term contract. Penalties if you release early.
-so, longest can keep someone is 5 years.

Lots of other details, but thats the basics.
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Postby Yoda » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:22 pm

Well the point of a keeper league should be to keep the best players you have on your team for the long term. Also grabbing a young guy from when he enters the league or when he breaks out is the most rewarding experience outside of winning.

In any case, my two keeper leagues are set up with straight keepers plus a lottery pick (20th round and beyond must be on roster all year) or a rookie. This rewards managers who do their home work. For instance, I've had a lottery pick of Sheets, Teixeira, Fielder and for next year, Upton.
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Postby Bogey9906 » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:38 pm

We simplified our keepers process to only keep up to three players and their draft round is two rounds earlier than last year (so first and second rounders can never be kept). No limit on how long a player can be kept, but the two-round bump will diminish his keeper value over time. The keeper draft status stays with the player, so it impacts his trade value (i.e. Peavy is a keeper with 11th round status for next year and therefore may be worth more than a non-keeper Santana). Only Yahoo database players are drafted and undrafted players are not eligible to be a keeper the next year, so mid-season call-ups like Hughes don't factor in. Overall, I really like the system since it's fairly simple and rewards good value draft picks while still allowing for most of the best players to be re-drafted every year.

We do an offline in-person draft and the Commish loads it into Yahoo afterwards. I think it does take him a couple hours to do it, so it would be great if you could pre-load players at different draft rounds, instead of first ten rounds only. That would also allow us to do an online draft since scheduling twelve owners for an in-person draft is very difficult. Ideally, the Commish could set the draft order, plug in the three keepers per team at the appropriate draft round, then let the system take over for an online draft.
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Postby Nerfherders » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:41 pm

My keeper league uses a cap $82 and contracts. contracts are set at squares of how many years you want to sign a player for (2 years = $4, 3 years = $9, etc) so a manager has the freedom to sign a player for however long he thinks he might be useful. It also doesnt set a cap on how many players shall be kept from year to year. This past offseason the keepers ranged from 10 to 19 (out of 30). It makes drafting an adventure as there are no draft tools anywhere that is going to allow diminishing draft rounds, so we do it offline on a message board. In its 6th season I dont think there are but a handful of players still with their original teams and only one signed to his original contract (A-Rod)
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Postby Fantasy Sports Genie » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:43 pm

chadlincoln wrote:Obviously, you're not running this league through Yahoo. I wish they had those capabilities to keep contracts/$$$ values but you aren't there yet. Where do you host your league to do that?

We do indeed use Yahoo. Have pretty much since Yahoo had fantasy sports, which was long before I worked here. There are of course aspects of my league that Yahoo doesn't support yet, but once the season is started, most of those issues don't matter until the end of the year.

Rounders wrote:And I did an offline a couple years back, and Yahoo's interface for adding players in from an offline draft was horrible (took me an hr or 2 to add them in). It may have changed since then, but that turned me off to the idea of offline drafts.

I feel your pain, but not anymore. The offline draft tool was completely redone for this year, and it is an absolute joy compared to the old one. The old one... had issues.

Interesting that a few of you use a snake draft based on previous results. I always figured the snake is intended to maintain as much parity when drafting from scratch. In our keeper league, we fully intend to favor the weak teams, so we don't snake; the worst team picks first in every round, just like in pro sports.

It also "feels" like the various options presented so far may tend to force players back into the pool every 5 years or so, albeit by widely varying means. In my league, in theory, you could keep a guy on your team for 10 years, it would just start to really hamstring you. In practice, we started this like 5 years ago, and I think there are only a few really expensive guys left from the initial draft. Abreu is the only guy who was protected at 8, and I think that was because the owner in question is really not grasping how to rebuild heh Soriano was protected at 7 by a team with not much else to protect, and noone else was protected above a cost of 4.
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Postby great gretzky » Mon Apr 30, 2007 10:02 pm

we do it a little differently, as the league-mates are geographically scattered and we don't have the ability to gather for an auction.

So we slot players at their round value, and that is the value you sacrifice to keep said player. The value is the yahoo rank, then the grid is filled out. So if you have a value of 1-10, you surrender a first, and so on.

While we had so many discussions setting this up, that we just defaulted to yahoo rtank (although people don't care for them) because they are impartial, everyone can access them, and since they are the same for everyone, so be it. Its fun, because we can incorporate value into the draft, rather than everyone keeping their best six.

While the tier A stars rarely move (although they sometimes do) a bunch of those second, third, and fourth round types get tossed back, since their can be some monster values elsewhere.

Imperfect, but its fun overall.

The draft poses a problem, as we use your interface and draft room, and people just have to select their keeper when its time.

However, this isn't viable if someone has connection issue or brainfart, it gets hard to unravel.

To be able to "slot" in some players prior to the draft would be awesome to me.
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