– As I sit in my own personal prison in Piscataway, mourning the loss of my dear friend Yasiel (SAD!), I’m looking to give some relief to my idle hands and start the dialog of what can, will, and should happen for the future in the coming months for The Backyard. As Odom and Sean (poorly) began the conversation yesterday, I will begin to ask the questions that will be ultimately answered to continue to shape the league in this new Dynasty setting.
The first question we got to ask ourselves is: WHAT in the hell is this league going to look like moving forward? I mean, we’re basically in uncharted territory as we head into the playoffs. The trading scenario is incredibly uncertain, as nobody really knows how to handle the currency of prospects along with the lack of draft picks to trade. How high do we rate prospects or even young pitching to shape the teams of 2017 and beyond? It feels like we’re going to have a multitude of approaches moving forward, with some teams capitalizing on uncertainty and some teams… well, not doing so.
My feeling is fairly clear in the sense that there is no REAL (we’ll get to this later) draft next year, so a successful team can’t just sit idly by and not look to reshape their team to the future. The playoff teams will have to balance the art of competing and preparing for the playoffs along, along with the look towards the next few seasons. This is much like what teams deal with in ACTUAL baseball. The remaining few teams who are clearly out of this playoff race will have to take a look at their roster and ask themselves who’s going to be a viable part of my 2017 season? That choice is entirely up to them.
Another very important question to this whole vision for next season: Which teams in this league will be a part of 2017 and beyond? I will not mix words, this league is about 100x more intensive than your average fantasy league (if you like to win). It takes infinitely more research and roster checking, both to see if you’re using a compliant roster and to shape your team in a way where your team is as usable and well-rounded as possible. Its not easy, and with the inevitable addition of more minor leaguers (more on this later), it may just be too much for some teams to control with real life in the way.
That question will have to be answered in the off-season, but if ANY team feels like this league is becoming too much, please think about what you’d like to do moving forward so we can line up adequate replacements.
One idea that’s been floated around is the idea of a yearly league dues. Now, we’re not talking about prize money. Anyone who thinks prize money is a good idea for this group is not looking at the league in the correct way. That trophy (which currently sits in my office) is all the happiness I need when it comes to Fantasy Baseball. The dues (maybe $20/team) would be used to purchase the nameplate for the champion each season to go on said trophy, as well as an INCREDIBLY good idea by current (more on this later) commissioner Mike Turtora. We use some of these dues to pay for both MLB.tv and MiLB.tv for the league, so everyone could watch all of the games for both minors and big leagues. I have both, and I typically don’t mind giving the logins up to those who want them, but this would be a nice thing for the league (and save me some cash).
Something that’s evolved in a big way over the last few years will continue to evolve, as we will be expanding the minor league system over the offseason for the 2017 season. This system will be expanded from 5 Minor league spots (which are usable up to 50 IP or 130 AB with no restrictions), to *To be finalized* 8 Minor league spots, with 4 being strict 0 IP / 0 AB slots for players in the low minor leagues. This is essential to our future as a league in accordance with the whole dynasty system.
In order to accommodate the system, we will need some sort of a draft every January/Feb (Once the league re-ups each season) to accept some of the new guys added each winter in as fair of a way as possible. My thoughts would be a quick 5 round draft (maybe even less) to shake out some of the new additions, with the draft order and particulars to be figured out over the break. Something to think about…
Our commissar Mikey T has been a great servant to the league for now going into it’s, what, 9th year? We’ve shaped this league into something much more than a fantasy league, which is highly commendable due to the difficulty and control that it needed. That being said, US Presidents only get 8 years, and they have to be contested in between. I think it’s well established in the chat that T will have some competition for the future of the commissionership in the coming off-season. Whether he even wants to be commissioner in 2017 is another question all together.
So the way it could shake out is a multi-candidate election for the commissioner’s job, filled with (some kind of) a platform for what you think the league needs to do moving forward, and a plan to accomplish the objectives. Anyone’s welcome to run in this thing, so that’s another question you’ll have to ask yourself. You’ll be given the league manager powers, along with the duty of coordinating all deadlines and time-frames, as well as being the final say in any disputes for the entirety of the league. Good luck if you’re into that.
SO YEA, in summation, we got a lot to chew on here. I hope everyone reads this and really takes into account the points made that affect them. We got a lot to do to continue to shape the league, so if you have any ideas, lets hear em!