How To Play Fantasy Baseball

February 11, 2011
Fantasy Baseball
by nautical2k

The first thing you want to do to play fantasy baseball is find, or form, a fantasy baseball league. Ten to twelve teams is usually the norm in a league, though you may have anywhere from four to 24 teams in a given league. Each team in the fantasy league must consist of 23 players. Many of the leagues you will find use only American or National League players, so the number of quality players is limited.

Your team’s roster will consist of nine pitchers, five outfielders, two catchers, one player for each of the three bases, a middle infielder, one corner man, and a miscellaneous player (designated hitter in AL based fantasy leagues, utility man in NL based fantasy leagues.

Players: Choosing Your Team

Each owner is given a list of players, and their eligible positions on draft day. There are two methods used to select your team in a fantasy baseball league. One method is the draft method, the other is the auction method.

Draft method- The teams are arranged in a random order. Following this order, owners take turns selecting players until all teams have twenty three players. The draft order is usually reversed for even numbered rounds. Before drafting starts, decide if the league will wipe the slate clean for the next season, or whether it will protect seven to fifteen players.

Auction method- In the auction method, each fantasy baseball team owner will start with 260 units of credit. Owners will take turns opening bids on players. Bidding proceeds, as with a normal auction, until only the highest bidder remains. Bidding will have a minimum increase of one unit of credit. With the auction method, you can force teams to stay under the 260 credit unit salary cap, or allow the purchase of remaining players once the bidding is complete and the owners have their teams completed.

Players and Their Eligibility

A player may play any position that he played in at least 20 major-league games the previous year. If he doesn’t have a position that he did play 20 times, he is eligible for the position he played the most often. The player is also allowed to play any position that he may appear in through the season.

How Fantasy Baseball is Scored

Cumulative scoring system-
There are a total of eight categories each team will be scored on. These are batting averages (pitcher excluded), home runs, runs batted, stolen bases, run average, wins, saves, and WHIP (Walks and Hits divided by total Innings Pitched). At the end of the season, each team is ranked from first to last in each category. In a ten team league, first place in each category will receive ten points. Second place receives nine, so on and so forth. The champion of the league is determined by the highest score at the end of the year.

Head to head scoring system-
Based on the same eight categories, teams play a game each week with another franchise. Each team will receive a point for each category they win, and ties are thrown away. Alternatively, teams can receive two points for wins, and one point for ties. If tied games will not be allowed to stand, strikeouts, doubles, runs, triples, and home team wins are excellent tie breaking categories.

Billy is a contributer to the Big Show Baseball MLB News & Opinion Blog which includes a page on Fantasy Baseball

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