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The high transaction costs of trading in fantasy baseball

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Postby tecmobowl12 » Tue May 22, 2007 5:59 pm

Snakes Gould wrote:one theory i came across is this:

many of the same people either win our leagues, or finish very high, and most people know who these 2-3 people are. they acknowledge that the knowledge of these guys (me included ;-) ) are higher than theirs. they're always hesistant to pull a trade with this small group of people because they have seem to think we know something they might not.


very true. also where you've got a bunch of friends in a league, nobody likes getting owned by their friend/rival, so they'll take an overly risk averse stance. this is the case between me and atleast one owner in my league
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Postby gatorgreenwell » Tue May 22, 2007 6:06 pm

Many people are unwilling to make trades because they are afraid that the guy they give up will outperform the guy they get. It's the fear of looking like someone got the better of you. Owners would rather fail to address a glaring need than look like they gave up too much to fill that need. Years ago, I gave up someone (I actually can't remember who it was) and I do recall that he definitely had more value than the guy I got; the mighty Jorge Julio. I was desparate for a closer and good ol' Jorge was closing in Baltimore, so I did it. I knew Julio was always flirting with disaster but I filled a need. He actually did fairly well for me.
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Postby Ursa » Tue May 22, 2007 6:08 pm

My league has had a grand total of one trade all year. I have had numerous offers from one guy but every one has been laughable. Even in a very deep 16 teamer, most people don't want to give any advantage to their rivals directly so they'd rather play the wire.

I think the length of season factors in to trades also - in baseball, everyone has slumps and there is time for them to pull out of a slump, so people are willing to hang on to non-performers longer.
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Postby pokerplaya » Tue May 22, 2007 6:14 pm

A question to all of you trying to make trades in your leagues....

How do you communicate? Just by bouncing offers back and forth? Email?

In my keeper, we all have each others AIM names, and we talk through IM. It is much easier to communicate in real time bouncing ideas off of each other and I've been able to complete 15-20 trades myself through my 4+ years in this league.
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Postby samjerky » Tue May 22, 2007 6:22 pm

chipper wrote:People are scared that they're getting ripped off even when it's a fair deal or even to their advantage.


That would be the classic Lemons problem from economics. They assume that since you're the seller, you must have more information than they do about the player, and therefore they will ultimately lose. As a result, you see trades that are for different positions (1st for 3rd straight up, say, when one guy just has too many 1st basemen) work out more often than swaps that involve the same positions.

Another problem is that a lot of people don't understand the constraints inherent on a fantasy baseball team. It's very interesting in economic terms. A product may have such and such value on its own, but if it is dominated by another product in value, its own value becomes almost or even less than zero. This is the classic '2 for 1' trade offer in which some guy tries to sell you Todd Helton and Stephen Drew for David Ortiz, when Miguel Tejada is your SS. Drew actually has negative value because he's taking up a roster spot.
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Postby OneLoveBoomer » Tue May 22, 2007 6:26 pm

#1 always burns me.
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Postby greenandgold » Tue May 22, 2007 6:43 pm

I think this is an interesting discussion but I don't see how this is in any way related to transaction costs. In any league with unlimited transactions trades will have zero transaction cost, no? It seems what is being listed and discussed is either why people don't trade or why they don't value players properly.
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Postby samjerky » Tue May 22, 2007 6:46 pm

Yeah transaction costs is not the term he really meant I don't think.
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Postby Amatter32 » Tue May 22, 2007 7:04 pm

I don't have any of those problems myself. The only time draft spot is important is before the season starts, when the values are reasonably the same.


Most leagues have little trading because it is difficult to communicate. Also, most owners can't give offers that help the other owner so nothing gets done. Just yesterday a guy asked me about Matsuzaka, but he wasn't willing to give anyone of the same caliber up. Quite dumb on his part.


What I hate most is when people try to lowball you so much that its obvious.
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Postby Grouperman941 » Tue May 22, 2007 7:05 pm

greenandgold wrote:I think this is an interesting discussion but I don't see how this is in any way related to transaction costs. In any league with unlimited transactions trades will have zero transaction cost, no? It seems what is being listed and discussed is either why people don't trade or why they don't value players properly.



I took it to mean that you have to overpay just to make a deal happen. Maybe I was projecting, but that's what I often find.

In my main league, 14-team keeper, some of us have had certain players so long that we add an irrational sentimental value to them, especially if we got them for nothing when they first came up. Some guys are absolutely impossible to trade with for this reason.
Be excellent to each other.
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