How Does Fantasy Baseball Work

How To Play Fantasy Baseball

When fantasy baseball first became popular in the late 1970s, and the personal computer was still in its infancy, the chore of manually compiling monthly or even weekly numbers was nearly impossible. Earlier versions of fantasy baseball included only a few categories and a single standard structure in order to make things as simple as possible. Fantasy baseball has exploded in recent years, thanks to the Internet, real-time information, and massive databases. There are dozens of different forms, rules, and styles to choose from.

Check out the many various methods to play fantasy baseball, even if you’ve never done so before.

First and foremost, the basic concept of fantasy baseball is as follows: you create a team and get points depending on the real-life performances of your players.

When it comes to fantasy baseball, there are two fundamental forms to choose from: A competition or a league There are many different sorts of fantasy contests and leagues available on the internet.

  • Sports, ESPN, and FoxSports.
  • Contests are frequently held in which participants select players based on a salary cap and compete to acquire the most number of points based on a mathematical formula (1 point for a single, 4 points for a homerun, etc.).
  • You must also adhere to a set of norms that are universally accepted.
  • Leagues are groups of players that are placed in groups of 8 to 18 teams, who are selected by a draft or auction, and who compete against one another based on year-to-date rankings or head-to-head records.
  • Leagues organized by friends often charge an entrance fee ranging from $10 to $300 and distribute the whole prize pool to the top finishers at the conclusion of the season.
  • Entry fees for smaller contests range from $15 to $60, depending on their size.
  • For example, the National Fantasy Baseball Championship offers a top prize of $100,000 and has a total payout of $100,000.

You may create your own criteria and categories based on your preferences – there are hundreds of possibilities.

There are more than 50 categories to pick from, as well as four distinct forms of leagues to play in at

Other handy tools include free agent listings, player news updates, and a league-specific discussion board.

A total of four distinct types of leagues are available to choose from: Categorical, Points, Points, and Head-to-Head are all types of competition.

CATEGORICAL is the standard fantasy baseball model that is utilized by more than 60% of RotoWire leagues, according to the company.

If your player hits a home run, for example, your home run category is enhanced by one.

According to the number of clubs in the league, the amount of points a team earns for each category is determined by a formula.

According to the example above, if your team had the most overall Home Runs, your team would get a total of 12 points.

In order to calculate a team’s overall ranking in the league, it is necessary to add up all of its points from all categories.

(For example, a single is worth one point, a homerun is worth four points, and a victory is worth twelve points.) The league is won by the player who accumulates the most number of overall points, regardless of where they rank in any specific area.

Head-to-Head games are used in the final two forms.

The winner of the league is selected by the number of wins and losses, rather than by points.

Head-to-head leagues can be scored in a variety of ways.

The winner is determined by the number of categories in which they have triumphed.

There are a few of additional considerations that your league will need to make before you can get started as well.

Using one league has the benefit of forcing participants to acquire utility players and middle relievers because of the small number of owners (8 to 12) in a group of this size.

In addition, your league will need to establish how many players will be drafted and who will start for your squad.

Generally speaking, most leagues allow for a reserve list of three to five players, making a total roster size of 26 to 28 players possible.

The majority of leagues have a system that requires a player to have appeared in 20 games at a certain position the season prior.

The standards for each requirement, on the other hand, differ significantly.

Someone from your circle of friends will have to act as the league’s commissioner, who will be responsible for settling disputes, entering the league’s information on your website, and working on other issues.

You’d be shocked how quickly even the mildest-mannered proprietor may get aggressive over a disagreement on the rules.

It is preferred by the majority of buddy leagues to have their selection procedure take place in person rather than through conference call or in a live internet draft room.

The majority of roster selection methods take place in one of two formats: an auction or a straight draft.

In the even-numbered rounds, the sequence is frequently reversed, such that the club with the first pick also receives the final pick of the second round, and so on.

The alternative method of selecting players is through an auction, in which clubs are given a salary cap from which to choose their players.

This algorithm is used to calculate the majority of the ratings you will see on the internet or in publications.

(You may see a list of expected dollar values based on the format of your league by visiting this page.) Incorporating the auction format allows for an infinite number of variations – some of which can become quite complicated – while still adding flavor to your league.

Before the season begins, you’ll also need to figure out how you’ll go about making trades during the season.

Second, your league must provide a procedure for clubs to use in order to acquire players who were not selected in the draft (free agents).

Because the one person in your league who spends all day watching ESPN does not necessarily receive the first free agent, the free agent budget appears to be becoming more popular in most leagues.

Once you’ve determined the configuration of your league and selected your participants, you’re ready to get started with the games.

First and foremost, make certain that there is a mechanism in place to keep everyone involved throughout the season.

Another alternative is to award a prize to the team that wins the second half of the game or to penalize the side that finishes last.

This is the problem that many free contests and leagues suffer from, where random people meet online to compete against one another.

It is more enjoyable for everyone if everyone participates and is engaged throughout the event.

Despite the fact that some members of your league may wish to use a Bill James formula as a category or an obscure statistic, keeping the league rules and setup simple will make it more enjoyable and keep everyone active.

Refrain from the temptation to add additional rules and categories. It’s important to remember that fantasy baseball is not the real thing. It’s more entertaining. The original version of this article was published on February 15, 1999, although it has been revised several times since then.

Fantasy 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Fantasy Baseball

Pitcher List has a large number of dedicated readers that come to our site on a regular basis to get information and advice on their fantasy baseball teams. We adore each and every one of you, but this post is probably not for you. This page is intended for those who have heard of fantasy baseball but are unsure of what it is or how to get started playing. It is not intended for people who are already playing fantasy baseball. We at Pitcher List are always looking for ways to expand the fantasy baseball community, so in this article, we will go over all of the fundamentals you need to know as a new player in order to start your own league: league setup, league site options, league format, and other important considerations.

  1. Fantasy baseball may be divided into two categories: daily fantasy sports (DFS) and season-long fantasy baseball (SFL).
  2. If you are not interested in the DFS format, please do not hesitate to contact us.
  3. In reality, the principle of full-season fantasy baseball is rather simple: you pick a roster of big league players that you are the only one who owns them, and you gain points based on their real-world statistics.
  4. What is the best way to play fantasy baseball?

“That is what makes fantasy baseball the finest fantasy sport,” I’ve been told more than a few times, and my response is generally along the lines of, “there is no one way to play the game, thus there is a virtually limitless number of alternatives.” Walk through the numerous league setup considerations you’ll have to make in your role as a commissioning officer.

  1. Finding fantasy baseball owners might be difficult due to the fact that the baseball season lasts six months and takes place seven days a week.
  2. There are leagues that may be organized with as few as eight teams and as many as thirty, which seems absurd, but it is true.
  3. Head to head leagues will necessitate an even number of teams, therefore a 15-team league will become a 16-team league in a head to head format, and vice versa (we will discuss this scoring system in a bit).
  4. You’ve lined up all of your league owners, which is fantastic!

Now, what will the makeup of your league be? The creation of your league begins with two major decisions: what style of league you want to run and how you want the team rosters to appear. The League’s Structure There are three basic league forms to select from: collegiate, professional, and amateur.

  • A redraft league is one in which owners draft a fresh squad at the start of each season. The redraft style is the most common sort of league, and the majority of published rankings are based on this structure. Owners will pick a specified number of players from their roster to carry over to the roster for the next season in a keeper league. Keeper leagues are more expensive than non-keeper leagues. Separate minor league rosters are occasionally utilized in the keeper structure, and they are often carried over in their full from one season to the next
  • However, they are not always employed. Dynasty leagues– The dynasty model allows fantasy owners to work in the same manner as real-life MLB general managers, which is extremely beneficial. In a dynasty league, owners will maintain all of their major league players, with the exception of a few, from one season to the next, as well as all of their minor league players. In this arrangement, there are normally separate cut-downs and drafts for minor league and big league players
  • However, this is not always the case.

All of the main sites (Yahoo, CBS, ESPN, and Fantrax) provide free versions of their games that may be customized to fit the needs of most leagues. Premium versions are also available from CBS, ESPN, and Fantrax, which provide further personalization and features.

  • There is no “right” method to create your fantasy baseball squads, and I’ve found that gaining consensus among the league owners is helpful in this situation. As an example, the usual settings on Yahoo have the following positions: C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, 3 OF, 2 UTIL, 2 SP, 2, RP, 4 P, and 5 Bench places (for a total of 15 players). The MI (middle infield 2B/SS) and CI (corner infield 1B/3B) positions may be added to this configuration, or the number of outfielders may be increased to four in some leagues. Others may elect to use all of the P slots for pitchers and delegate the decision-making to the owners over which pitchers to deploy. As long as everyone in the league is on the same page, there is no incorrect way to set up your league.

What kind of league structure should you use? Your owners have confirmed their participation and have agreed on a league structure, which is fantastic! You must now make the most critical decision of your life: how will you keep track of the game’s progress? The format of the league and the scoring method for the league are the two most important decisions you must make when determining how to maintain score. The two most popular fantasy baseball forms are the Rotisserie and the Head-to-Head competitions.

  • Rotisserie: Also known as the Roto format, the rotisserie format was the first league structure employed by the folks who invented fantasy baseball. Using this structure, teams accrue data in many areas, and points are allocated to them depending on their positions in the various categories. These points are combined together to obtain an overall score for the purposes of the league standings. The league is won by the team with the highest overall score throughout the course of the season. Due to the influx of fantasy football players into the fantasy baseball community in recent years, the head-to-head fantasy baseball model has been increasingly popular in recent years. Teams will play one opponent each week in this manner, and their scores will be compared in order to determine the winner. If you are playing in a head-to-head scenario, there are two key decisions to make:
  • What exactly is a victory? In Head-to-Head leagues, this may seem like an unusual question, but in reality, it makes a significant impact. You may choose to score a week as a win or a loss, allowing teams to go 1-0, 0-1, or tie, or you can choose to count the winner of each category as a win or a loss. If you use a 55 scoring system, for example, you may have a large range of weekly potential outcomes for each team, ranging from 10-0 to 0-10 in some cases. This decision has a significant influence on how much movement there may be in the standings throughout the course of the season, particularly later in the season
  • What does it look like during the playoffs? In contrast to Roto leagues, the champions of Head-to-Head leagues are determined through a playoff process that is quite similar to that of fantasy football. It is up to the head-to-head leagues to decide how far into the final month of the season they will extend their playoffs and how many weeks they will devote to the championship round. September in Major League Baseball brings a lot of roster insecurity and worries about playing time. This must be taken into consideration while arranging the playoffs in order to minimize the influence of chance as much as feasible
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So, what kind of league scoring system do you want to use? Your owners are ready, and you’ve agreed on a league setup and format that everyone will like. You’re on the home stretch! After that, you must decide on the second component of the keeping score algorithm, which is the league scoring structure. There are two basic scoring systems: categories and points. Categories are the most often used.

  • Category scoring is the most popular scoring system in fantasy baseball, and it will continue to be so. Using this approach, you may select a number of different hitting and pitching categories, and teams can accrue data to compete in the rankings in each area. If your team finishes first in a category, you will receive 12 points (assuming a 12-team league)
  • If your team finishes last, you will receive one point. The number of categories varies from league to league, but the “industry standard” is 5-5 (five hitting categories and five pitching categories): batting average, home runs, RBI, runs, and stolen bases for batters
  • Wins, ERA, WHIP, strikeouts, and saves for pitchers. The following are the categories for batters: batting average, home runs, RBI, runs, and stolen bases. There are two methods available for using the category score system: rotational and head to head. Points: Points scoring transforms every primary outcome from hitters and pitchers into points, resulting in a daily total of one point for each participant based on their performance. These totals are combined together to get daily team scores, which are then added together to determine weekly team scores. It should be noted that there is no globally accepted industry standard for this scoring system, since the point totals for wins, saves, at-bats, and pretty much any other statistic may be tailored to the tastes of your league. This scoring system is most typically used in the Head-to-Head format
  • However, it can be utilized in any format.

What type of draft style should you employ? Owners? Check. What is the format of the league? Yep. What is the league’s structure? Done. Is there a scoring system? You got it! Now it’s time to talk about what many people consider to be the most exciting aspect of any fantasy league: the draft. There are three alternatives to pick from (many more options!) in this section:

  • Snake draft: Using a 12-team league as an example, a snake draft would have the draft go from selection one to pick twelve, and then back up from pick twelve to pick one again. In practice, this implies that the teams on each extreme of the spectrum, 1 and 12, will get back-to-back selections followed by a considerable period of time in between. Standard draft: This is a less common model in which the draft order in each round is the same as the draft order in round one: 1-12 in this example. Standard draft: Wouldn’t it be great if you could pairMike Trout with Bryce Harper (who is now ranked 13th by the Pitcher List staff)? Therefore, it is a less common format to be seen in publications. Auction draft: This is quickly becoming the most popular method of drafting since it allows you to select any player you like. In an auction, you are given $260 to spend on your roster, which you must spend on your roster. Instead of a draft order, a nomination order is used, in which teams can nominate one player at a time for bidding. The owners will bid on each player one by one until there is a high bid and a winner is determined. When deciding how much to bid and which players to select for bidding, there is a certain amount of strategy involved. Dan Richards did an excellent job of laying down the fundamentals of auction drafts in his essay from December of last year.

The draft turned out to be a success! So, what do you do now? Your draft is complete, and your teams have been selected. You did an excellent job! However, the task has just just begun. The administration of your team during the season is not quite as thrilling as the draft, but there are a few things you should make sure are clearly stated in your league regulations. What is the frequency with which lineups are established? Daily or weekly lineup modifications are available for your consideration.

Once a lineup has been decided upon by the deadline, which is normally the Monday before the first game of the day, it cannot be modified beyond that point.

To this day, I still believe that daily lineup changes are preferable since they allow owners to respond to injuries and take advantage of matchups on a game-by-game basis.

What method will be used to sign free agents?

The owners would have to release a player presently on their squad or place them on the IL (if your league has IL, previously DL) in order to make room on their roster for a new player in each of these scenarios.

  • The FAAB (Free Agent Acquisition Budget) is quickly becoming the most common technique of acquiring free agents in the league. All of the teams are given the identical FAAB budget, and they use those “dollars” to submit blind bids on free agents that they think they would want to add to their squad. The FAAB processing can be done on a daily or weekly basis, depending on the league’s preferences, but the important thing to remember is that once a club has exhausted its FAAB funds, it will be unable to sign any more free agents. As a result, a wage cap and a strategy are introduced into the free agency process, which can be quite entertaining. FCFS (First Come, First Served) refers to the principle of first come, first served. Under the FCFS structure, all free agents are available for pickup at any time and there are no limits on when they may be picked up. This model notably benefits someone who has easy access to free agents and can make movements at any moment
  • Nonetheless, this format is not for everyone. Waivers: The waiver procedure is conducted in reverse order of the standings, with the club with the lowest record having the greatest priority for obtaining a waiver request. Once a player is claimed by the team, the team drops to the bottom of the waiver priority list, which means they will lose any player who is claimed by another club.

What is the trading process like? Trading is often regarded as the second most exciting portion of the game, behind drafting, in terms of overall excitement. Owners are given the opportunity to don their general manager hats and try to work out deals to make their club better. Every year, there is a trade deadline that corresponds to either the July 31 non-waiver deadline or the August 31 waiver deadline in the Major League Baseball season. The trade veto is the most contentious component of trading that has to be resolved before it can be implemented.

  • In other leagues, there is no such period.
  • Personally, I despise the current system.
  • Only the commissioner of the league, in my opinion, should have veto authority, and he or she should exercise it only in severe cases, such as when there is evident collusion, for example.
  • For those who have taken the time to read this and have decided that they do not want to start their own league, there are several leagues available on all of the main sites that you can join for free.
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Fantasy Baseball Prize Leagues – Frequently Asked Questions

QUESTIONS THAT ARE REGULARLY ASKED The Fundamentals of Fantasy Baseball in 2021 Baseball’s governing body Fantasy Baseball is completely free. Regardless of which game you choose, What You Should Know Q:Can you tell me what Fantasy Baseball is? A:Fantasy Baseball gives you the opportunity to manage your own professional baseball team of baseball players from around the world. In each week of the baseball season, you draft your team of the best players from across Major League Baseball, and you receive points based on how well those players perform in MLB games.

For those of you with a group of friends, you can start your own league!

Alternatively, you can join a league and compete against other members of our site. We have a game for every skill level, so no matter what you are looking for, we have it. How does your Baseball Commissioner differ from the free fantasy baseball games you offer? A: A:

  • Baseball Commissioner- Simply put, this is the most enjoyable method to participate in Fantasy Baseball with a bunch of your friends. Commisssioner makes it simple to set up your own fantasy football league and personalize it in any manner you want. You can modify everything from the draft and schedule to the scoring system and transaction rules to just about anything else your league could possibly desire. Aside from that, Commissioner provides your league with great trash-talking tools such as a league message board, a chat room, and even the ability to create your own news items complete with photographs and videos. More information on Baseball Commissioner may be found by clicking here. FANTASY BASEBALL FOR FREE- This is ideal for novices or those who aren’t quite ready to part with their money to play. It’s the same fantastic Fantasy Baseball experience that our Commissioner program provides, but for a fraction of the price. There are two methods to approach the game: 1.) Participate in a league with other players of comparable ability level, in which we will serve as commissioner and define all of the regulations for you. You just manage your squad and attempt to outperform the rest of the competition. Alternatively, you might form your own private league with pals, in which case you would set the regulations. More information on Free Fantasy Baseball may be found by clicking here.
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Q:Can you tell me about some of the things that provides? We had to develop a separate page just to list all of the features because there are so many. To view the list, please click here. Q:Can you tell me how much it costs to participate in Fantasy Baseball? During the special prepay promotional time, Baseball Commissioner costs $179.99 ($149.99 if you purchase during the promotional period) for the whole season, which covers all of your league’s owners up to a maximum of 30 teams.

  1. Baseball’s governing body Q:Will it be simple to set up and manage my league?
  2. It takes only a few minutes to get your league up and going.
  3. We even have basic setup choices that you may use as a foundation for your league.
  4. Bring your buddies along, make your own game rules, create your score system, and we’ll take care of the rest.
  5. Every piece of vital information about your league, including team rosters, regulations, history, and scoring system, remains exactly where you left it when you last visited.
  6. Q:Does your site have the capability of supporting a Keeper or Dynasty league?
  7. We were created to cater to the needs of keeper and dynasty leagues.
  8. The Keeper choices allow you to customize your league’s keepers by determining how many players will be retained from season to season, how your league’s owners will pick those players, what date keepers must be selected by, and how that will affect the draft.
  9. Q:Can you tell me about the many sorts of customization possibilities you offer?
  10. Here are a few examples:
  • Drafting Options- We provide Live Drafts, Live Auction Drafts, Automated Drafts, and Extended Drafts in our online draft room, as well as a variety of other services. It’s possible to gather your friends and input the draft results in real time as they are being selected, or you may enter them after the selection has concluded. You have the ability to enter your own draft order and personalize it anyway you see fit for all drafts. Choose which roles you wish to utilize in your league and how many of each position a club may have in order to maximize your profits. You may choose the amount of players each side starts each week, the size of the bench, and even the number of players on the disabled list and in the minor leagues. You have the option of using only players from the American League, only players from the National League, or both. Scoring Options: You may choose between Rotisserie and Head to Head scoring. We provide a number of different Head to Head choices, including Head to Head Category-based scoring systems. Once you’ve created your scoring system, you’ll be able to pick from hundreds of scoring categories to utilize in your league, as well as the value each category will be assigned. Transaction Options- You have complete control over the rules of your league, including how and when owners will make additions and subtractions. We provide the typical waivers procedure, the FAAB (Free Agent Acquisition Budget), and the ability to create up your own transaction process. Aside than that, you may pick how your league handles transactions. Scheduling Options- You have complete control over the scheduling of your league, including when and for how long scoring periods will continue (weekly, biweekly, monthly). Additionally, there is a great deal more. Baseball Commissioner allows you to have complete control over virtually every facet of your league.

Fantasy Baseball is completely free. Q:Does it take long to get started? A:Yes. Simply establish a team for free and search for a league to participate in. Q:Can you tell me how to choose a team? A:Each league has a certain day and time for the draft. You can choose a league that offers a draft date and time that is convenient for you to participate in. When the time comes, you just go to your league’s website and enter our live draft room, where you may choose players for your team from among those selected by the other league members.

  1. Regardless of the game you choose, Q:What types of notifications can I expect to get in order to better manage my team?
  2. E-Reports are the reports that appear in your mailbox and are sent to you via email.
  3. In addition, we’ll give you alerts whenever a player is added or dropped from a league, if a trade is proposed to you, whenever someone posts to the league discussion board, and whenever there is anything else you need to be aware of.
  4. A:Yes.

Q:Can I use my mobile device to connect to my team? A:Absolutely. Set your starting lineup, make substitutions, and check your live scoring from virtually any mobile device you have.

Fantasy 101: Fantasy Baseball Points Leagues Explained

However, while there are many different hybrids and variations available today, fantasy baseball is generally played in one of two ways: Rotisserie Baseball, which is based on performing well in various statistical categories, or H2H Points Leagues, which award points for individual stats that are added together to form a single overall score. Rotisserie leagues were the very first type of fantasy baseball league. However, when fantasy football and a points system were introduced, many fans were drawn to the simplicity of the scoring system and applied it to the sport of baseball.

The club owner can gain points in a variety of ways, and he or she is not required to complete all of the categories specified in the league in order to be in with a chance of winning it all.

So what are you waiting for?

Join a league as soon as possible!

The Basics of Fantasy Baseball Points Leagues

In point leagues, each stat will have a number value associated with it that can be calculated. Owners of teams will be awarded points based on the statistics gathered. In the case of a player that goes 4-2 with a home run, a double, a run scored, two RBI, and a stolen base, you would receive 15 points: 5 for a home run Total number of bases is six (four with the home run and two with the double) 1 Runs= 1 RBI= 2 Runs= 1 (the batter had 2 RBI) 1 thief = 1 TOTAL VALUE= 15 The following are the usual point values thatFantraxassigns to each hitting metric in the game: Walks are worth one point.

  1. Singles are worth one point.
  2. Triples are worth three points.
  3. 1 point for being hit by pitches 1 point is awarded for each run scored.
  4. The following are the pitching statistics: Earned run equals one point.
  5. Loss equals -5 points.

Differentiating points leagues from other head-to-head setups

There are three types of head-to-head (H2H) leagues: each category, the majority of categories, and points leagues. All three of these games are often played on a weekly basis in the manner of a face-off showdown. In a head-to-head “most categories” contest, the team that gathers the most number of stat categories wins the matchup. If a squad wins seven out of ten stat categories, for example, he will accrue a win in the overall rankings. Head-to-head, the term “each category” refers to a setting that is identical to the “most categories” configuration, except that instead of earning a victory, a tie, or a loss, the team would amass all of the stat category results and place them in the standings.

The results of each score category are determined by whether the team won, tied, or lost.

In point leagues, on the other hand, the players accumulate points during the course of the previously defined accumulation time. When the period comes to a close, the team with the most points wins the matchup and the “W” column in the scoreboard increases by one.

Playing points leagues in Fantrax

Fantraxprovides fantasy gamers with the most personalized experience available. If points leagues appeal to you more than roto-formats or head-to-head competitions, you can either build your own league with your chosen setup choices or join one of the many public or private leagues that exist. The sign-up process is simple and straightforward. If you wish to join a private league, simply select “Join League” from the Commissioner drop-down menu. In order to proceed, you must provide the League ID and password issued by your commissioner.

  • You will find a list of the leagues that are currently available, as well as their drafting schedules and formats.
  • Fantrax provides both free leagues and paid leagues with premium characteristics.
  • Make your selection under “Create League” and decide whether you want to utilize the default Fantrax set up, import a league from another site, or clone a league.
  • You may, however, still make changes to the league to suit your needs and interests.

After that, you’ll need to fill out the necessary information, including the league and team names, as well as the league’s kind (Fantrax offers re-draft, keeper and dynasty, and the tools and resources for all three are excellent) Player pool, draft type, entrance cost (the system allows for free leagues as well as fees to participate that vary from $5 to $1000, all of which are administered by theFantrax Treasurer), and other parameters.

That’s all there is to it!

Typical rosters and positions

The majority of leagues feature 22 active players, with the number of bench spaces (BN) varying from league to league. The following are the usual roster positions in the points leagues: C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, MI (Middle Infielder) and CI are all positions in baseball (Corner Infielder) OF UT;P (x5) OF (x9) Of course, Fantrax gives you the flexibility to add or remove roster places as you see fit. You could, for example, add a C place and have a two-catcher league instead. You may also reduce the number of CI and MI spots, while increasing the number of UT spots, and so on.

How to acquire the players: draft types

Fantrax provides four different types of drafts: standard, auction, automated, and offline. Standard drafts are the most common. Standard: The standard draft takes place on a live platform, with all of the clubs in the league participating. They all congregate on the platform and choose the players they wish to include in their team by employing the “snake” technique, which involves reversing the order of players in the first round in the second round. The third round will be exactly the same as the first, and the fourth round will be exactly the same as the first.

Auction: Unlike the traditional snake draft, in this thrilling selection format, all teams have an equal opportunity to select every player.

Automated: The word “automated” says it all.

Teams will register their player rankings, and they will get the results of the draft shortly after.

Afterwards, the commissioner must manually enter each team pick onto the platform when the draft is completed (this may be done in a living room, café, restaurant, or even over email). Following the conclusion of each draft, players can be acquired by trade, free agency, or waivers.

A Few Tips for Points Leagues

Remember that the credo of points leagues (remember it!) is that it doesn’t matter how you get your points, as long as you keep them rolling in. For example, if your league awards 5 points for home runs and 5 points for stolen bases, you may have a 40-homer guy who doesn’t steal bases, a 20-20 threat, or a 40-SB player who is a zero in the power department and there will be no difference in scoring (at least in those categories.) Identifying the areas that provide the most points and drafting (or adding) a number of players that excel in those categories is the key to success.

  1. We have a tutorial describing how to evaluate players in points leagues written by our very own Jorge Montanez (@roto nino on Twitter) if you need any more assistance.
  2. To be quite honest, balance is less critical in points leagues than it is in roto formats.
  3. Naturally, the higher you place in a category, the more points you will receive in that category.
  4. In point leagues, you won’t have to worry about it.
  5. Check out the 2020 FantraxHQ Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit for even more outstanding rankings, strategy, and analysis.
  6. Our fantasy site, Fantrax, was one of the fastest-growing fantasy sites in 2019, and we have no plans to slow down now!
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Fantasy 101: How to Play Rotisserie Baseball

Remember that the credo of points leagues (remember it!) is that it doesn’t matter how you get your points, as long as you collect them. For example, if your league awards 5 points for home runs and 5 points for stolen bases, you may have a 40-homer guy who doesn’t steal bases, a 20-20 threat, or a 40-SB player who is a zero in the power department and there will be no difference in points (at least in those categories.) In order to win, you must first identify which categories provide the most points and then choose (or add) a large number of players that excel in those areas.

  • We have a tutorial describing how to evaluate players in points leagues written by our very own Jorge Montanez (@roto nino on Twitter) if you need any more help.
  • To be quite honest, in points leagues, balance is less critical than it is in roto leagues.
  • It goes without saying that the higher you place in a category, the more points you will receive in that area.
  • In points leagues, you will not have this problem.
  • The 2020 FantraxHQ Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit has additional fantastic rankings, strategy, and analysis.
  • Fantrax was one of the fastest-growing fantasy sites in 2019, and we’re not planning on slowing down anytime soon.

Affordably priced, with multi-team transactions, designated commissioners/league managers, and simple drag and drop procedures, Fantrax is guaranteed to delight the most serious fantasy sports enthusiast – join up now for a free year at

The Basics of Rotisserie Baseball

Rotisserie Baseball is a fantasy sport in which you draft a team of real-world players to represent you against a group of other ‘owners,’ much like other fantasy sports. In the league, the success or failure of the players you select will determine the success or failure of your team in the competition. While fantasy baseball can entail months of research and analysis, the fundamentals of the game are relatively simple.


Rotisserie Baseball scoring is based on a number of different statistical variables. The cumulative numbers of your squad are compared to those of the other teams in your league to determine who wins. The better you do in a category, the more points you receive in that area. Consider the following scenario: a 12-team league. The team with the highest overall score in a category would receive 12 points, the second-place team would receive 11, the third-place team would receive 10, and so on until the team with the lowest overall score in that category would receive one single point.

In the beginning, there were eight categories: four for hitting (avg., HR, RBI, and SB) and four for pitching (strikeouts, walks, and strikeouts) (Wins, ERA, WHIP, and Saves).

The categories of Runs Scored and Strikeouts were gradually added by numerous leagues, resulting in a fairly conventional 5-5 scoring system, although many leagues substitute OBP for Avg.

As luck would have it, Fantrax has the ability to handle an almost limitless number of categories, and the scoring is completely automated, allowing you to view real-time rankings whenever you choose.


Surprisingly, the traditional Rotisserie Baseball rosters haven’t altered all that much throughout the years. Many leagues still employ the 23-player rosters that Okrent established back in 1980, which are still in use today. Neither team had more than 14 batters (two catchers, one first baseman, one second baseman, one third baseman, one shortstop, one middle infielder, one corner infielder, five outfielders, and one utility player) or pitchers (nine pitchers for each side) (any combination of starters or relievers).

  • A 24th player has been included in certain leagues, allowing each side to employ it as a pitcher or batter if they so choose to.
  • According to what you can see, while there is still some resemblance to a typical arrangement, there is more variance than we have ever seen before.
  • Your rosters should be designed to meet the requirements and desires of the owners in your league.
  • You have complete control over which positions are used and how many players are allowed to participate.
  • It’s not difficult at all.

Maybe you played Little League with the tools of ignorance and now you want to play in an all-catcher league. You’re undoubtedly having problems, but don’t worry, we’ll get you back on track. Everything about your Rotisserie Baseball league may be customized with Fantrax’s intuitive interface.


During the first few years of Rotisserie Baseball, each league exclusively employed players from either the National League or the American League, depending on the situation. Each of these eight- to twelve-team leagues utilized a fairly high percentage of the players from their respective player pools. This meant that even backup middle infielders and a significant number of middle relievers were selected in the draft. Many individuals continue to participate in leagues that are exclusively comprised of players from the American League or National League, although the vast majority of leagues now allow you to roster players from any Major League team.

On Fantrax, you may customize all of these league options to your liking.


Rotisserie Baseball leagues are typically comprised of eight to 18 teams, however I’ve seen fantasy leagues comprised of one club for each Major League Baseball franchise. Obviously, this means that you’re employing the vast majority of Major League Baseball players in your league. You should be doing your research, I’m sure of it! Consider how deep you want to go with your player pool when selecting how many teams to have in your league. When deciding how many teams to have in your league, one of the most essential factors to consider is how many teams to have in your league.

If you want to get down and dirty with backups and set-up men, an 18-team league or an AL/NL-only league would be a good fit for you.

In this extreme scenario, any MLB player might be on the rosters of numerous fantasy clubs at the same time.


Each season begins with a draft in which players are selected to participate in the season. For this, the league typically employs one of two approaches. Many rotisserie baseball leagues continue to operate in an auction style, much like they did in the early days of the sport. In most cases, each team has $260 to spend on their 23-man active rosters, which they may ‘buy’ with that money. This technique assures that every team has an equal opportunity to sign every player, provided that they are willing to pay the required fees.

Due to the lack of technology for on-line auctions when the internet first appeared and on-line drafts were a thing, snake drafts became a requirement.

Although snake drafts remain the most common method of acquiring players these days, new technology provided by companies such as Fantrax has sparked a rise in the number of leagues that use the auction model.

A third technique of acquiring players involves clubs establishing their player rankings ahead of time, followed by an automated draft to choose players. This strategy is not generally desired, and it is frequently employed in more informal leagues where the rules are less stringent.


Rookie baseball leagues, keeper leagues, and dynasty baseball leagues are the three major types of rotisserie baseball leagues. When participating in a redraft league each year, each owner picks a completely new squad. Each season, this provides each owner with the opportunity to start again and correct the mistakes of the previous season. Keeper leagues enable each team to maintain a specific number of players, which can range anywhere from a few of players to as much as half of your club’s roster.

More than that may not be achievable or may come at a high cost, whether in the form of an enhanced salary during your auction or the cost of a certain draft position in a snake draft, depending on the situation.

Dynasty Fantasy Baseball Leagues allow an owner to maintain players for as long as they wish in a variety of positions.

The MLB draft process in Dynasty Leagues can be a bit of an afterthought in certain cases, but in most leagues, all of the excitement around draft day moves to the minor league side of things, where prospects have a much higher monetary worth.


Rookie baseball leagues, keeper leagues, and dynasty leagues are the three major types of rotisserie baseball leagues available. When participating in a redraft league each year, each owner chooses a completely different team. The opportunity to start afresh each season and correct any mistakes made the previous season is provided to each owner. Leagues that enable teams to maintain a set number of players, ranging from a few of players to perhaps half of their roster, are called keeper leagues.

Keeping a player over an extended period of time may not be possible or may incur a cost, whether it be an increased salary during your auction or the cost of a certain draft position in a snake draft.

The ability to maintain players for as long as you want in a dynasty fantasy baseball league is a huge advantage.

As a side note, while the MLB draft can be a bit of an afterthought in Dynasty League play, in most leagues all of the enthusiasm surrounding draft day is transferred to the minor league side of things, where prospects are given a lot more consideration.


Does all of this appear to be a lot? It might be difficult to take it all in at once, but breaking the season down into discrete parts can be beneficial to your understanding. Because the draft is so large, you should devote all of your time and energy to it at the beginning. If you have a successful draft, your regular season will be lot less stressful. If you make a mistake with the draft, you might find yourself with a significant mountain to climb. The good news is that getting started with rotisserie baseball is a rather simple process.

Of course, if you want to increase your chances of winning some money with your roto initiation, you may do so as well.

Whether you play for money or just for the excitement of the game, rotisserie baseball can be a fun and challenging way to put your baseball knowledge to the test and enhance your strategic thinking skills.

Start with simple ideas and you’ll be on your way to learning more complex topics before you know it.

Join a league as soon as possible!

Beginning immediately and continuing until Opening Day, we’ll be releasing new stuff.

Affordably priced, with multi-team transactions, designated commissioners/league managers, and simple drag and drop procedures, Fantrax is guaranteed to delight the most dedicated fantasy sports enthusiast – join up now for a free year

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