Fantasy Baseball 101
There are different types of fantasy baseball leagues and drafting methods:
Head-to Head – This type of league allows players to match up with an opponent each week. There are various scoring category options that you will compete for during the week. Since your matched against your rival one of the most important elements in “head-to-head” is that you know your weekly opponents strengths and weaknesses. This consists of matching your opponents strengths and exploiting the weaknesses. These leagues can either award the winner by best overall record or implement a playoff system. This type of league is interactive in that there is plenty of trash talk opportunities on a weekly basis.
Points-Based – Unlike the Head-to Head you are not matched up against an individual opponent. Your opponent is the whole league. The points in this league are based on accumulated statistics and the highest points wins the league. There are various scoring category options and points will be awarded for various pre-determined categories. A key element in this league is to figure the highest value statistical categories and then try to blow these out of the water. Many people enjoy playing this type of format when they are beginning to get a good feel of a full baseball fantasy season.
Rotisserie– The most popular format in fantasy baseball. This league incorporates both pitching/hitting and this league forces you to factor in all categories. This league also demands more time than the other leagues. The goal in this league is to finish at or near the top in either 8 or 10 statistical categories dependent upon league settings (4 X 4 or 5 X 5). Points are awarded based on the performance of individual categories in relation to the competition. For example, if there are 10 teams in the league, the team leading in RBI’s would earn 10 points for that category. The player with the lowest RBI’s would earn 1 point. The goal is not to win every category but to do very well in each. This league is all about balance and learning to walk the tightrope with the points.
Auction draft – Allows teams to compete for players in an auction format. League will set pre-determined budget and teams have to budget accordingly to fill roster. Auction drafts are not as common as traditional drafts. However, the benefit is that every team has an opportunity to bid for all players unlike traditional drafts. This style of draft is usually implemented by more experienced FB players. Recently, a survey was conducted that said once FB players changed from a traditional draft to an auction draft, up to 80% did not want to go back to a traditional draft the following year. However, the disadvantage to some is the time commitment in preparing for auction style drafts.
Traditional draft – This is utilized by most leagues and is characterized by a systematic round by round draft. The draft order is either random before the draft or pre-determined by the league before the draft. The advantage is that managers do not have to deal with finances and volatile player values. The traditional draft allows mangers to choose from any available player that is available at that time. The disadvantage is that players who have the late picks in the first round have no opportunity to obtain the top star players. Managers typically do not have control over draft position.