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SumG wrote:I think the most important advice I can offer is in regard to any issues that come up over the course of the season (I've had rule issues come up in my league every year since we've started doing it). In these cases, you must do one of two things. First, refer to the rules that were in place at the beginning of the season (if they apply). If, and only if, the rules in place don't explicitly say how a matter should be handled, then you must deal with everything in a very open and honest way, allowing for as much input as possible from the league managers. I think what can sabotage many leagues is the feeling from a manager that the commish is unilaterally making choices that hurts his chances of winning and can lead to the kind of ill-will that can make the experience unenjoyable for all. By being open and allowing discussion, you can hopefully get the majority of the league to back the decision and at least blunt some of the ill-will.
Barnstormer Fantasy League rules for 2009
Updated AFTER the winter meeting.
BFL at CBS | BFL Forum (link to come) | BFL Owners (link to come)
Highlighted text indicates a change for 2009.
Rules can be amended by majority vote during the off-season or by unanimous vote during the season. Anything not addressed in the rules is to be ruled on by the commissioner.
2009 Commissioners: Ned, Hammer, and Dan (1st alternate - Ryan; 2nd alternate - Justin)
*Official Communication: All official league communication is done on the BFL forum only (2008). All other communication is considered unofficial, including forum postings in the incorrect location and e-mails to the CBS e-mail address. * = All use of the term "Offical Communication" below references this definition.
Since we now have 12 categories a week, for clarity's sake, all references to "BFL games" have been removed from the rules, replaced in most instances with "matchup" (2009).
Main Sections: I. League Information | II. Rosters | III. Starters| IV. Transactions
I. League Information
A. Owners and Expansion
The BFL will accept no more than 12 teams (2008).
Owners must keep the same team name the entire season (2007).
Each owner may own only one team (2003).
New owners must take over abandoned teams if any are available. If there is more than one abandoned team, the first new owner to pay his entry fee gets his choice (2005). If a new owner assumes an abandoned team he will not be considered an expansion team for drafting purposes (2004).
If a draft is in effect, expansion teams will have an expansion draft preceding the actual draft. They will pick enough players to be even with returning teams who have keepers. The will have the normal serpentine draft and be able to choose from any players not protected by existing teams (2005). If an auction is in effect, expansion teams will be given a full $300, and may trade it as any other team. They have no pre-draft, however. (2007)
The BFL requests all owners and prospective owners to declare by one week after the owners' meeting if they will be in the league that year (2009).
Existing owners may not take over abandoned teams (2006).
If abandoned teams are present during cutdowns, we will NOT cut players for them. As soon as a new owner is in place, however, they must cut down to the current level of other teams as soon as possible (2008).
Each "season" begins when the first player in the year's auction is put up for bid (2008).
Each week consists of head to head match-ups between two teams. Each of our 12 categories is treated as a Win, Loss, or Tie in our standings. We will aim for as close to 162 categories as possible (2007). Schedules will be issued by opening day each year. We will fit as many matchups as possible after figuring out the playoff brackets.
The schedule will be unbalanced (you will have more matchups vs. your own division) and there will be no doubleheaders (2007).
To eliminate the need for most tie-breakers, we will aim for every team will play every other team an odd number of matchups (2006).
In leagues of 8-14 teams, two divisions will randomly be drawn on draft day. If any other number of teams are in the league, we will vote on how to divide divisions.
We will play shortened matchups during all-star week (Thursday through Sunday) (2007). Starters are due 30 minutes before first pitch Thursday.
C. Playoff Schedule
The season will be followed by a Divisional Playoffs, a League Championship Series and a World Series.
Unlike the regular season, when a playoff matchup is tied (ex. 6-6), the home team gets the victory (2007).
The BFL intends for 30-40 percent of teams to make the playoffs.
In a 12- to 14-team league, 6 teams make the playoffs (2008). Top 1 or 2 teams receive byes in order to keep a clean 3-tier bracket. If 2 teams, they are to be division winners.
In a 12- or 14-team league, the four Wild Card teams play a 1-week match-up with Seed 6 at Seed 3 and Seed 5 at Seed 4 (2003). In case of a tie, the home team wins. (2007). There is no "re-seeding" after each round. Top seed always plays bottom seed and always has home field.
The winners meet in a 1-week League Championship Series. The top-seeded division winner, Seed 1, faces the winner of Seeds 4 and 5 while Seed 2 faces the winner of Seeds 3 and 6. Seeds 1 and 2 are home (2007). In case of a tie, the home team wins.
The World Series matches the final two teams in a 3 "game" series, best 2 of 3, with the top seed being home (2008).
All non-playoff teams will compete in a consolation bracket during the playoffs. Seeds will be numbered 7-12 and they will compete with the higher seed being home in successive 1-week series. There are 6 teams in this bracket in a 12-team league, so the two best records will receive byes. The final matchup, the Toilet Bowl, will consist of a 3 "game" series, best 2 of 3, with the top seed being home (2008).
Each week consists head to head match-ups between two teams. Each of our 12 categories is treated as a Win, Loss, or Tie in our standings.
Pitching (6 categories): ERA, WHIP, Strikeouts, Wins-Losses, Holds, Saves-Blown Saves
Hitting (6 categories): Runs, RBIs, Home Runs, Batting Average, (Total Bases + Walks + HBP), and Stolen Bases
If Team A has 15 RBIs and Team B has 10 RBIs, then Team A would be 1-0, team B would be 0-1.
If you do not have an at-bat, you cannot win BA (2004)
If you do not have 5 IP or more, you cannot win ERA or WHIP (2006).
We use CBS Sportsline's stats as official. If a discrepency is found in more than one reputable source, the commissioner can change the statistics (2006).
In case of scoring discrepancies, you have 7 days from the matchup's end to make an appeal. We will not allow changes to results after 7 days in any circumstance (2001).
E. Player Salaries & Salary Cap
All players are a minimum of $1 (2006).
Each owner has a salary cap of $300 (2004).
F. Money Distribution
12 teams, using CBSSportsline.com (2008):
NOTE: I used the same percentages as when we had 14 teams. Then made the numbers round. If we vote for 1 or 2 fewer playoff teams, we will revisit this.
Entry fee = $100; Total pot with 12 teams = $1,200
$150 - CBS Sportsline.com fee
$50 - BFL Forum hosting fee
$100 - 2 Division Series Losers = ($50 each)
$250 - 2 LCS Losers = ($125 each)
$225 - World Series Loser
$425 - World Series Winner
T-shirt - Losers' bracket winner, purchased by World Series loser. (Gag prize). Losers' bracket winner must wear shirt to the draft.
Note: Each season, owners are expected to pay an extra, non-refundable $20 fee. This allows them to trade salary cap, and is non-refundable if they quit (2008). Each time an owner quits, his $20 deposit is paid out in the following year's winnings (2008).
G. Tie Breakers
If teams are tied for any playoff slot, or other prize-winning category, the following tie breakers will be used (2007):
1. Head to head record
2. Division record (if in same division)
3. A one-"game" playoff; home team determined by a coin flip
H. The Commissioner Committee
A three-man commissioner committee will be voted for every draft day (2007). They will take over duties one week after the draft date. Commissioners may have as many terms as the are voted into (2006).
Commissioners are only to step in when there's a controversy, when a rule is unclear, or if the rules clearly state it's his authority. They are to look at the intent of the original rule with common sense to the best of their ability.
For trade protests, if one or more of the commissioners are involved, we will have an alternate step in. These alternates will be the next-highest vote-getters from draft day (2007).
The commissioner can be of any experience level except a rookie.
Rosters will include the following 30 players:
10-21 Hitters: Must include a minimum of 1 C, 1 1B, 1 2B, 1 3B, 1 SS, 3 OF and 2 of your choice
9-20 Pitchers: 5 SP, 3 RP, and one of your choice (2007)
There are no more "minor league" slots. There are no more "DL" slots. They are all included in the above (2008).
You may draft anyone you want. Major leaguer, minor leaguer, Elvis, etc. (2001).
B. Playoff Rosters
Before the final fantasy matchup of the regular season, final rosters are set. No players may be signed or traded after the playoff roster deadline. This includes acquisitions for players that get injured later. You'll just have to tough it out.
Players cut for the final playoff roster deadline automatically become free agents eligible for the draft the following season.
C. Keepers and Offseason Dropdowns
You must keep 5 players from the previous season. Players may be kept for an unlimited number of years (2004, reaffirmed, 2008).
Keepers will be a part of the league at least through the 2009-2010 turnover season (2008).
Keeper salaries increase each season they are kept, regardless of ownership, or whether they have been cut and re-signed. In year 1, they increase $5. Year 2, $10. Year 3, $15. Years 4 and beyond, $5. So, for example, Ryan Braun would be $1 (original auction value), $6, $16, $31, $36, $41, $46, etc. This format will be in place, barring a unanimous vote, through the 2009-2010 turnover season (2008).
If you have a documented injury or role change concerning one of your five players, you may pick another keeper at any time before the first pick in the draft. You MUST bring the source to the draft to do this (2005).
When the draft begins (2009), you may trade any or all of your five keepers for draft picks, salary cap, or other keepers (2005).
In the offseason, we have several roster cut-down dates to add some offseason fun. You also have the option of cutting down to any number lower than listed. Example: If you are to cut down to 15, you may cut down to 14, or even 5 (2006).
25 - End of MLB World Series
20 - January 1
15 - February 1
10 - March 1
Then, for five days, preceding the draft, we will announce one keeper per day, in reverse order of record. The final of these five days should be two days before the draft at midnight. Example: If the draft is on a Sunday, all keepers should be set by Friday (aka early Saturday) at midnight (2006).
C. The Auction
1. How it works
For submitting players up for auction, owners go around in a circle clockwise, having drawn cards for the order. You may not skip your turn. You may not trade spots with another owner in the circle.
You have 1 minute to submit a player.
Minimum submission is $1. If no one raises, you must take him for $1.
Once a player is up for bid, anyone can bid at any time. There is no order.
When bidding slows down, a "going once, going twice" method of reasonable time will be given by anyone in the circle. Gentleman's courtesy should prevail (aka the Ned O'Reilly rule).
The auction ends when everyone has a full roster, or all owners say they are done.
If someone makes a mathematical mistake during an auction, he has to cut his most recent acquisitions until he gets back under the cap, as soon as the error is found. The auction pauses for the correction (2006).
2. Cap room
You may trade any amount of cap room each season, but you may never be without $270 or more (at any time). There is no limit to how much cap room you can gain (2005).
If you gain cap room for the auction, after the auction you must put all your drafted players in a list from highest value to lowest. Starting from the top, the values will decrease by $1 until all the cap room traded has been allocated. If you go through the entire roster and haven't reached the salary cap, start at the top again and add another $1 (2008).
If you lose cap room for the auction, after the auction you must put all your drafted players in a list from highest value to lowest. Starting from the top, the values will increase by $1 until all the cap room traded has been allocated. If you go through the entire roster and haven't reached the salary cap, start at the top again and add another $1 (2005).
If a team traded for cap room and the owner he received them from quits (and no new owner takes over), he still gets the extra cap room. If an owner trades cap room to a team that no longer exists, he still loses that cap room (2005).
You cannot trade cap room for seasons after the next. Example: You cannot trade cap space for the 2009 season until the 2008 season begins (2008).
E. The Disabled List
The DL no longer exists (2008).
A. Starting Lineups
Each matchup owners start the following:
9 Hitters: 1 C, 1 1B, 1 2B, 1 3B, 1 SS, 3OF, and 1 DH.
8 pitchers: 5 SPs, 3 RPs (2007).
You must give your starters 30 minutes before the first MLB pitch on Mondays. This is CBS's deadline, and we abide by it. You must do so on the CBS Web site. If you have technical issues, use Official Communication* for proof of the timestamp (2009).
If starters are not given, the previous week's lineup will be used. If you signed or traded for new players and you failed to give your lineup, those new players will NOT automatically be inserted in your lineup. Instead, you will get zeroes for the appropriate players.
If you made a sub in a previous matchup and do not give a new lineup, your original lineup will be used (2004).
B. Position Eligibility
Until May 1, we will use the previous MLB season as a guide in addition to documented role changes for the new season. After that, we will use the current years' stats (2002).
All documentation must be a reputable news source. No forums, blogs or opinion columns.
To be eligible at a position, a player must have had 6% of his MLB games played at that position or have a documented role change approved by the commissioner (2007). Example: When the Yankees traded for Alex Rodriguez, because the Yankees already had Derek Jeter at SS, A-Rod's owner can immediately start him at 3B. You may continue to play A-Rod at SS as well, until his play there goes below 6% (2006).
If an owner starts a hitter who is ineligible at that position, the opposing team (or anyone) can protest until the following matchup is over (9 p.m. Sunday, seven days after the matchup has ended). The commissioner committee then has 3 days from the protest to investigate and correct the score (2002). If a player is ruled ineligible, he will get a zeroes, UNLESS he and another player that is also in the starting lineup can successfully switch positions. We will not allow changes to results after 7 days in any circumstance (2001).
Pitchers stats count even if a reliever gets a spot start or a starter makes a surprise relief appearance.
Regarding abuses/swingmen: Fellow owners may protest your use of a pitcher to the commissioners. The owner with the questionable starter, should then provide proof of a changed role, whether temporary or permanent. Example: if a newspaper in advance said Bobby Jenks was going to spot-start for the White Sox, that would be evidence and you could play him as a starting pitching. However, if he started with no advance notice, you would get those stats, because that would show that you had no ill-intent when putting him in your lineup in his typical Relief role. There are other abuses that can take place in this situation, so it will be the commissioners discretion (2008).
1. General notes
You may not sub for a rainout, as the MLB game will be made up later.
For suspended MLB games, all stats count for the original day. This is the practice of the MLB and CBS, so we will abide by it (2008).
Substitutions must made using Official Communication*. If you can not post, get another owner to do it for you (2005).
You can sub for a sub endless times. (Your original starter can return, too.)
Once you make a substitution, you can not take it back (2007).
2. Hitting Substitutions
You may replace a hitter who fails to appear in one or more box scores any time - for any reason - before first pitch the following day. The substitute's stats count for you the day after your starter missed his MLB game. For example, if a given player misses an MLB game on a Monday, you may call in before first pitch Tuesday. This replacement's Monday stats will NOT count; his stats begin on Tuesday. You get zeroes for that position for Monday (2004).
Your DH can move to his natural position (given he is eligible there) as a substitute for an injured player, so that you may bring any backup into the DH slot
Players are eligible to sub in at catcher if they have played 1 MLB game at catcher (2007)
It is OK to start - and also to sub for - a player who is already on the MLB DL (2008).
3. Pitching Substitutions
If you have a pitcher who misses an appearance, you may sub in for him beginning the next day, but because pitchers are not every day players, you need documented proof of missed time. This can include an injury, bereavement, etc., just like hitters. Communicate the news report and your desired sub via Official Communication*, and a CBS administrator will make the change for you. So, just like with hitters, if your pitcher misses a Tuesday start, you should post your sub by first pitch Wednesday. Your subs stats will count from that day forward (2006).
It is OK to start - and also to sub for - a player who is already on the MLB DL (2008). For relievers, this means you can sub beginning on Tuesday, just like hitters. For starters, this means you must wait until his usual rotation spot is skipped, either by off day or replacement pitcher starting. Your replacement enters the day AFTER your starter was supposed to pitch.
A. Pickups and Cuts
For pickups, the BFL uses CBS's Free Agent Auction Bidding system (FAAB). If you would like to bid for a free agent, you enter it into CBS Sportsline along with a salary amount that you are willing to pay for the player. Each Wednesday and Sunday at midnight, the bids are processed and the highest bidder wins the player at his bid value (2007).
FAAB Periods begin the first Wednesday after a weekend draft, and continue on the regularly scheduled Wednesday/Sunday periods (2009).
According to CBS, if two winning bids are equal, the team at the top of the "Waiver Priority List" gets the player. Each season begins with the FAAB order from worst record to best record of the previous year (2008). Once you win a player, you go to the bottom of the list.
For more information on CBS's FAAB process, read "FAQ - CBS's Free Agent Auction Bidding" in the "Rules & Policies" forum.
You may pick up free agents via the FAAB all season long, and for the final regular-season fantasy matchup, aka the Playoff Roster deadline. Once the final regular-season fantasy matchup has begun, you may no longer sign free agents.
When you sign a player, you have to keep him on your active roster for one BFL matchup before cutting him. Otherwise, you could claim an endless amount free agents. You may trade him immediately, however (2006). In pre-season, the FAAB periods will serve as "one BFL matchup" so that you sign and cut players before the season starts (2007).
When players are cut in the BFL, there is an automatic three-day wait before he can be signed. This is called his "Waiver" period, so that the first person online doesn't get him (2006).
CBS will not stop you from going over your roster limits or salary cap for technical reasons. Therefore, if you accidentally go over your roster limit or salary cap via pickup or trade, you have until first pitch Thursday and Monday to make your roster right after FAAB signings. If you do not, you lose $3 cap for the current year only (meaning you have $297 to spend instead of $300). You will be penalized an additional $3 cap for every day you remain over the cap (2009).
You may make a trade at any time before 30 minutes before first pitch on Mondays to go into effect that day (2006).
The league trade deadline is midnight July 31/Aug. 1 each season (2003).
Trading resumes after the BFL World Series ends and is allowed all-year long (2002).
Trading cap room is allowed for all owners, since all are required to pay a $20 non-refundable deposit for the following season. If they leave the league, the money is kept (2008).
If you receive a player via trade, you may trade or cut him immediately, as long as you've cleared cap room and a roster spot to first acquire him (2006).
If you accidentally accept a CBS trade offer, and want it undone, you have 15 minutes to make it known using Official Communication*. The trade will be reversed, with no penalty to you (2008). If 15 minutes has passed, the other owner can (but is not obligated to) still reverse the trade (2009).
All trade offers involving cap room should be clearly stated as to who gets the cap room. If there is a cap room misunderstanding, owners have 24 hours from its Official Communication* announcement to get it reversed. After that, all trades are final (2008).
C. Protesting trades
We are eliminating the trade protest process. The only possible time a trade could be blocked is if is believed the owners are colluding. To do this please email a commissioner. Do not communicate it to the entire league via Official Communication* (2009)..
Fantasia wrote:A couple of things to think about
1. Elect a Treasurer, he can deal with transaction/league fees etc. and reports to THE COMMISH any problems
2. If you desire, elect a statistician, in our league, it's the person who runs the site, posts player trades, ensures salaries and contracts are correct, handles problems with the company that runs the site when they happen, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, reports to THE COMMISH if teams are making illegal moves/trades, not maintaining roster integrity, etc.
3.Actually, this should be #1. If you make a mistake at some time during the season, or something comes up that you didn't plan for (TRUST ME, this WILL happen, no matter how much preparation you make), don't be afraid to admit your error, and correct it. TOO often, some COMMISH will know that something isn't right after he recieves differing viewpoints, and fails to acknowledge the error in a ruling, or doesn't explain the ruling well to the owners, and it can cause a lot of animosity in the league. Remember, you're only human and it's possible you can make a mistake...as long as you acknowledge it, and correct it
Bloody Sox wrote:SumG wrote:I think the most important advice I can offer is in regard to any issues that come up over the course of the season (I've had rule issues come up in my league every year since we've started doing it). In these cases, you must do one of two things. First, refer to the rules that were in place at the beginning of the season (if they apply). If, and only if, the rules in place don't explicitly say how a matter should be handled, then you must deal with everything in a very open and honest way, allowing for as much input as possible from the league managers. I think what can sabotage many leagues is the feeling from a manager that the commish is unilaterally making choices that hurts his chances of winning and can lead to the kind of ill-will that can make the experience unenjoyable for all. By being open and allowing discussion, you can hopefully get the majority of the league to back the decision and at least blunt some of the ill-will.
I totally agree with this statement - I was going to say something similar. Areas that have come up where we've had to adjust on the fly have been with trade votes and keepers. Do everything you can to make sure there are no loopholes in the rules - this means having a "catch-all" rule where you say something like "unless otherwise stated, we'll use the generic CBS/ESPN/Yahoo rules". You should also have rules that indicate how you will deal with cases that aren't covered by any existing rules (put it up to league vote, for example). Also, make sure that you have someone to act on your behalf as commissioner if there is a dispute involving your team. Good luck!
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