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A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby jvdesigns » Wed Apr 27, 2011 8:44 am

Hello All..I'm new to fantasy baseball this season. I signed up for both a 5x5 rotis league as well as a head 2 head point based league. The head 2 head weekly points based league I'm doing is a money league through CBS. The scoring system definitely benefits strong starting pitching- 3 points for every inning pitched, 7points for a win, 3 points for a quality start, 0.5 points for each strikeout, -1pt for each run, -1pt for a hit, 7pts for a save, -5 points for a loss, -1 point for a walk. . The league has roster requirements for starting lineups-5 starting pitchers and 2 relief pitchers. Needless to say, with this scoring system, teams that have more starts from pitchers in any given week have a big advantage. Well this week I noticed that my opponent has an unusually high number of pitching starts. When I looked at his starting lineup-I realized that he is somehow using starting pitchers in his reliever spots. He is using M. Harrison, and P Coke (both of which are starting pitchers) as his relievers. Both of these guys each have 2 pitching starts this week-which means he's netting an extra 4 pitching starts this week-which is grossly unfair. Starting pitchers are by far and away the highest scoring players in our league. At 3points/inning, a greater potential for wins, a greater potential for strikeouts, a potential for quality starts, it's easy to see how playing 7 starting pitchers is far more favorable than playing 5 starters and 2 relievers. When I brought this up in our league's message board, my opponent posted that it is a sound strategy and that I am in the wrong for not using it. The problem stems from CBS giving some full time starting pitchers dual eligibility (both starting pitcher and relief pitcher) even though they are definitely not relief pitchers. I replied to my opponents post by saying that he is using CBS's lack of issuing proper eligibility to his advantage-and that it is a "dirty strategy" at best and cheating at worst. I contacted CBS about this issue and they had a "too bad" attitude. In my opinion, what my opponent is doing is wrong and is no different than having an illegal roster. Shoving "starting pitcher" potential points in "reliever spots" is unfair in my opinion-and the fact that CBS has allowed this by mislabeling player's eligibility does not make it any more "right". I would just like to hear some opinions. I don't blame my opponent for using this loophole (as gross as I think it is), but I'm shocked that CBS does not see a problem with it. Allowing starting pitchers to be used in reliever spots taints the importance and value of actual relief pitchers. No matter what, I will never play in a CBS league again and I would highly recommend that nobody else does either. Thanks, Jeff.
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby jonboycubs » Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:00 am

I see what you are saying, but players are given eligibility for a reason, because they have played that role. Just like you can use a second baseman as a SS, if they have dual eligibility, or a first baseman in the 3b slot. I do not think it is cheating at all. If the player can be used in that roster spot than so he can be used. There are starters than can not be and relievers that can not be used as starters. What I say do is play him at his own game. I dont think its so much of a loophole. I have seen Zambrano, even though he is a starter, come in and play relief if is needed. As with the cubs something is always needed. Anyway this is baseball how it is played and in my opinion is not cheating, its pure strategy. Good luck this year
"I was taught you never, ever disrespect your opponent or your teammates or your organization or your manager and never, ever your uniform." Ryne Sandberg
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby lane_anasazi2 » Wed Apr 27, 2011 2:13 pm

Yeah, this isn't cheating at all. You're getting too hung up on the "real baseball." Player gain/lose eligibility based on how they're actually used in real life. CBS does this, Yahoo does this, and I assume ESPN does too though I've never used that service.

It's all about flexibility, and about balance. Michael Cuddyer has started a few games at 2B, so he gets 2B eligibility, letting you, the manager, choose to deploy him there, or not.

With pitchers, you've only got two options: SP, RP (or P, in Yahoo, for some prospects). Now, eligibility is determined by how pitchers were used the previous year, and this year. For example, Jeremy Hellickson was used in relief last year, and he started a few games, so he's got dual eligibility. You can deploy him either as a starter or a reliever. Now, since this year he's starting 100%, you can stick him in a RP spot and get starts from him. In most leagues that's not too valuable. In fact, it's the opposite kind of pitcher who can pick up value. Default Yahoo leagues go 2SP/2RP/3P, so if you've got a SP-eligible reliever, you could deploy 6 closers on days when you only have 1 start, or 7 on days when you have none.

Or take a league with 5 SP spots and 5 RP spots, no generic P spots. You're probably not going to be able to get 5 starts a day out of your staff, so wouldn't it be valuable to have some SP-eligible relievers to maximize your stats? That's where SP/RP eligible guys like David Hernandez (last night notwithstanding) come in. Just because he wasn't used as a starter the very last time he pitched doesn't mean he's not eligible for that role. Then you have, say, Houston Street. The last time he started was probably in high school. Only RP eligible.

Anyway, point of the point - you're wrong, this isn't cheating. It's not even a "dirty" strategy. I'm kind of confused how you see eligibility SHOULD be determined - take Martin Prado. You think he should be OF eligible, right? Oh wait, he started a game at 3B. Now he's 3B-only for a game. Whoops, back to OF. Oh, moved over as a late-inning sub for Uggla. 2B now. That makes no sense.

You need to change your perspective here - being mad at CBS for doing it this way isn't the right attitude.
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby fast dogs » Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:48 pm

1 of the first things you do before you join a league is know all the rules and settings of a league inside and out. I'd never join a league where streaming SP is allowed or they only pay out 60% of the money to first place. There are plenty of private leagues with settings just the way you like, or you set 1 up yourself with good and fair rules and payouts. Almost every public league has some loopholes that you incorporate into your draft and strategy; I'm sure this team isn't the only 1 that uses starters in the RP slot if thats the way its set up
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby jvdesigns » Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:39 pm

I just really wanted to thank you all for your super helpful replies to my post. I guess having a starting pitcher in a reliever spot just seemed like an unusual dynamic to me-but I should have read the rules more carefully. All of your replies have given me insight to how fantasy baseball leagues work-and I truly thank you for your helpful advice. With my inexperience, I will most definitely be posting more questions in the future for your insights if you don't mind. Jeff
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby mkultra » Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:54 am

For what it's worth, my weekly H2H points league has a House Rule that explicitly prevents RP slots from getting points from starts, because of the dramatic effect 2-start guys can have. Because it's weekly lineups (and people aren't dicks), it's easy enough to roll back points when it happens (usually a reliever getting a spot start).

I agree that "rules are rules", but that's a change I'd lobby for in the off-season.
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby shawngee03 » Wed Jun 01, 2011 1:31 pm

my points league gives negative points if a SP is used in the RP spot. on CBS what you can do is give .1 pt for a GS, and -30 pts for a GS in a RP spots

that would solve the issue.
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby mkultra » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:34 am

That's pretty rough. What do you do when your middle reliever has a random spot start?
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby rchemo » Thu Jun 02, 2011 1:42 pm

mkultra wrote:For what it's worth, my weekly H2H points league has a House Rule that explicitly prevents RP slots from getting points from starts, because of the dramatic effect 2-start guys can have. Because it's weekly lineups (and people aren't dicks), it's easy enough to roll back points when it happens (usually a reliever getting a spot start).

I agree that "rules are rules", but that's a change I'd lobby for in the off-season.


I agree with this post. Any league that has been around for more than a year or two should have a policy on this subject. Either allow it, or don't allow. If there is not an explicit rule either way, then there is no way your point of view will be supported, and thus, it is a valid and often used strategy, even if it "feels" wrong. My advice, bring it up for discussion before the next season starts. No matter the outcome, your problem will be solved.

Maybe you guys can help me with my problem http://www.fantasybaseballcafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=432334
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Re: A dirty strategy or cheating? Opinions please...

Postby KingOfSports » Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:08 pm

This is not cheating at all. I use this strategy in my H2H league too. Also, Coke and Harrison are eligible for both SP and RP.
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