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Post 14 Jan 2012, 8:48 pm

First off, I do not advocate an expansion draft. Owners have spent time developing their teams, and it is something that a new owner would have the "luxury" of doing. There are 26 spots on a roster. Another 52 people taken from baseball is about the limit of what I would recommend. I do not think 30 teams are feasible, Sixteen teams would be the limit, and would not water down the pools but a little bit.

Mike, how long is the waiting list?
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Post 15 Jan 2012, 9:31 pm

Five are on the wait list (shown on the first post in this thread). I agree with Todd that a wait list is not a compelling reason to expand but it does have validity. This league will always have a connection to this community and I ensure that RS members get the first shot at league openings. Expansion by two teams could be an extension of that philosophy - there have been no openings for two years now.

A second Redscape league might make sense but this doesn't seem like the right time. I think the site is in a lull so it might be hard to get owners. Well, that would be another's job anyhow - the RBL is plenty for me.
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Post 16 Jan 2012, 5:54 pm

One thing I could see us doing if we had enough people interested (and as far as I know, we don't) is setting up two leagues and then having them play a championship against each other. The catch here would be that the two leagues would have separate player pools, so there could be overlap between the two teams in the championship. That sort of thing is the only way I can see to accommodate an unspecified large number of interested Redscapers.

As for how much the player pool would be watered down by adding two teams, and thus 52 players (more like 55 if you account for DL spots)... go through the RBL FA pool and try to assemble two rosters' worth of teams. They will be all kinds of ugly. Here's the starting lineup for one such team (the "better" one), based on overall 2011 ratings:

C: Carlos Ruiz
1B: John Mayberry, Jr. (< 300 ABs) (would actually be Daniel Murphy but I'm putting him at 2B)
2B: Daniel Murphy (< 400 ABs)
3B: Alberto Callaspo (again would actually be Murphy)
SS: Marco Scutaro (< 400 ABs)
MI: Orlando Hudson (< 400 ABs)
CI: Scott Sizemore (< 400 ABs)
OF1: Gerardo Parra
OF2: Will Venable (< 400 ABs)
OF3: Allen Craig (200 ABs) (Mayberry would slot in here)
OF4: Jon Jay
UTIL: Travis Hafner (<400 ABs)

There's only 4 major league regulars in that lineup (and speaking as a Cardinals' fan, that's being generous to Jon Jay). That's not to say this is a lineup of nothing but scrubs. There are some players in there that have been, can, or will be valuable contributors. For example, I can pretty much guarantee Allen Craig would have been rostered had he not gotten hurt. But there's also Orlando Hudson :razz:

Anyway, the point is, for 2011, you'd have had all kinds of trouble scrounging together counting stats with that kind of playing time. There are some SB in there, but not one of these players hit 60 RBI or R (there were 6 FA, with generally abysmal rate stats, who managed to hit one or both of those marks).

And this is assuming that there are no "mistakes"- that the additional players picked are the absolute best of those available. I think we all know from personal experience that isn't how things go.

Of course, you wouldn't actually end up with any teams looking like that, but adding 50+ players of that caliber certainly will water things down a lot. That might be a good thing, depending on your preference, but I don't think it's deniable.

Actually, I'd love to compare this team to a "worst" of team that would represent the league's 14th marginal team, but I'm not sure how to pick the players. Just picking the worst rated players would get me far too many injured players, late callups, and the like. Even including someone like Adam Dunn, who had plenty of ABs, might not make sense- he probably still would have been rostered in a 12 team league, simply due to potential. But if I can think of a way to do it, it would be interesting to see how the 14th and 15th marginal teams compare.
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Post 21 Jan 2012, 11:21 am

Not sure why the two leagues would have to have separate player pools. What I do know is that ^ looks too much like work.
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Post 21 Jan 2012, 4:44 pm

If they didn't have separate pools, then you'd get all the watering down that is being debated.
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Post 21 Jan 2012, 5:14 pm

Sharur wrote:If they didn't have separate pools, then you'd get all the watering down that is being debated.


Hmm, I guess I'm thicker than molasses. I see it this way: if they didn't have separate pools but were separate leagues, both leagues would have (using your favorite tacking dummy as an example) Albert Pujols. The only "danger" would be if Pujols A (on Todd's team valued at $5) and Pujols B (on Steve's team, which over paid Albert and took him at $18) met in the World Series. Would the fantasy baseball world be destroyed?

It's a conundrum.

I'm not even sure how you would have them with different player pools with free agents, etc. Seems to me that it would end up being more like a division than a different league.

Ah, re-reading your post, what I pose is the subject of your first paragraph. I guess I misunderstood or glossed over the second paragraph, which is about adding just two teams. I think allowing 2 expansion teams would be to consign them to one year of absolute terribleness. Theoretically, they might, with some brilliant transactions, make modest improvements in Year two. My guess is it would take at least three years to be competitive.
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Post 22 Jan 2012, 12:30 pm

I think you are overstating the disadvantages to expansion teams. My first argument is that value-laden contracts are partially offset by poor contracts that must be a) carried or b) incur buyout costs. Annual buyouts over the past four years have been very steady; a good indicator that we (or at least some of us) still have no friggin idea of what we're doing. The second point is anecdotal using George as evidence. He rarely keeps more than a handful of players and hasn't signed a long-term contract in years. George is in the championship hunt every year while starting from close to scratch.

Alas, the argument is moot for this year.

As to Todd's suggestion, I'd have no interest in making the RBL a part of a larger contest. I think it would be very interesting, however, to have two leagues (AL & NL only) with a championship contest at the end. With the Astros moving to the AL next year, it would seem possible. I suppose you'd have to set up a dummy league for the championship game. Interesting indeed...
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Post 23 Jan 2012, 12:57 am

For more anecdotal evidence in favor of your argument, Mike, there's the performance of the Wallaby. They weren't an expansion team, but they did go worst-to-first (or the very close equivalent thereof), starting out with basically purging the roster.

That said, I see two big arguments in Steve's favor:

1. If we're all reasonably competent (or even if more of us are then not), the positive value contracts should outweigh the negative value ones. I think this is a pretty safe assumption.
2. More importantly, as soon as you add teams, you get inflation. But current contracts won't feel inflation. So for every contract a team has, they will gain some amount of value. That would really put new teams in a hole, and would be fundamentally different then anything any team has had to deal with in the history of the league (and thus renders anecdotal evidence less applicable).

In practice I'm sure it would be possible to be competitive right away, but I think it's much more likely that Steve would end up right about an expansion team's trajectory.

As for the whole divisions thing, I was just musing, I don't think there's any reason to do that with the RBL right now, particularly since we don't actually have ~30 interested participants.
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Post 23 Jan 2012, 7:13 am

You're right about the inflation and I agree on some disadvantage accruing to expansion teams.

Regarding divisions - with an AL/NL split, you could go with 16 or 20 teams. Relative to the RBL, players would be scarcer and water down the pools (unless the RBL ever moves to 16 teams). I play in a 10-team NL league so we already go deeper than the RBL - and will go even deeper when Houston moves next year. You'd also have to carefully consider which categories to use so as not to disadvantage one team in the championship game. Pitching tends to be better in the NL while offense, I assume, is stronger in the AL. It would require much study by a stats guru to come up with categories that balance each other out. Or the AL could just get rid of the stupid DH rule (most AL teams no longer use a pure DH anyway). Like you, I'm just throwing ideas out there and am not committing to organizing any such endeavor!
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Post 24 Jan 2012, 6:30 am

I really, really wish baseball would settle on a single rule across the two leagues, be it DH or no. I would certainly favor no DH- the lack of consistency that the DH introduces into the rules, in terms of the normal symmetry between hitting and fielding, is appalling- but I'd still prefer all DH to the silliness we have now.

You're right that such a setup might not be completely fair when it got to the championship, but the same can be said about the World Series, yet there's a reasonably even distribution of titles between the two leagues. I think it would make more sense to just go with it. For one thing, I have no doubt that each division champ would be proud of their accomplishment over the course of the season, even if they didn't win the league championship, and you could use the initial championships to collect data to try to even things out if it didn't seem to be working.

I think it's actually a pretty cool idea, but the RBL is plenty for me.
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Post 25 Jan 2012, 11:54 am

Miguel Cabrerra, Justin Verlander & Prince Fielder??? Who do the Tigers think they are??? The Yankees??

Their owner is 82 years old. If he's being honest with himself, he's not going to be around for all of that long-term contract he just signed Prince to. It's all about next year, future be damned.
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Post 01 Apr 2012, 8:06 pm

If any are watching from the periphery, the 2012 auction is complete. Here are the rosters: RBL 2012 Rosters

A great auction with quite a few head-to-head battles. I still can't believe David outbid me on Carlos Pena. :sigh: Pujols went for a massive $62 this year, the highest since... since... I don't know when! One down note - Matt had to miss his first auction ever, disrupting a decade of consistency. How much did the computer make you pay for Utley, Matt?!

Note to self: Triple check the MLB schedule prior to locking in auction date.