Welcome to the Next Generation of Fantasy Baseball

User's Manual and Guide

Version 4.2 | Last Updated: February 10, 2013 | ©2005-2014 Fantasy Sports Reality Inc.

 


TABLE OF CONTENTS


Welcome

Gamedayritual Overview

Welcome to gamedayritual, where Fantasy Baseball truly reaches the major league level.  From very beginning of your gamedayritual experience you are going to realize that this is the most realistic, most challenging and most exciting fantasy sports game you have ever played.

This game differentiates itself from other fantasy baseball games by attempting to draw close analogies to as many aspects on running a baseball franchise as possible.  You have to be the owner and build a stadium, manage attendance and track expenses.  You have to be the GM and sign your players on an open, competitive market; draft prospects and negotiate trades.  You also have to be the field manager and set your line-ups, adjust your rotation and strategize on match-ups.

All this is done on a weekly or bi-weekly, head-to-head basis against opponents in your own league based on real-life statistics.  This is not a simulator. This is the next-generation of fantasy baseball.

The Franchise: Getting It All Started
Before you put a product on the field you need to create the infrastructure necessary to support the franchise.  In gamedayritual you must start your tenure as owner of the club by building your team's stadium and creating its brand.  Make sure that your stadium works with the plan you have for the club as the home field's attributes will actually have an effect on how your club performs! In addition, you will have to keep a keen eye on attendance: the truest indicator on how your team is really doing.

The Free Agency Blitz: Building a Winner
You'll begin your gamedayritual experience as every major league team does in the off-season -- by surveying the free agent marketplace.  Build your club by spending wisely in the fast-paced auction-based Free Agency Blitz or " FAB ".  You'll be able to contend for rookies, marquee blue chippers, pitching staff aces and aging former stars with a combination of cash and contract years to try and entice them over to your side.  Unlike the traditional pick-a-day fantasy baseball draft process, the FAB is a truly dynamic marketplace where you, the players and the other teams are constantly interacting. 

The Clubhouse: Playing your Opponent
Once the FAB closes its time for your on-field managerial skills to take over.   You set your starting line-up for week-long Monday to Sunday games that pit your team head-to-head against a different league opponent each week.

Beyond having to put together a full set of position players, your team will include a full 9 man batting order with performance bonuses for each spot in the line-up; backups at all positions in case of injury; a full starting rotation; a spot starter; a bullpen including a middle reliever, a setup man, a closer, and a flex reliever; and a supporting cast on the rest of your 25-man and 40-man rosters.

In addition, you'll have to consider match-ups, pitching rotations and strategies for contending with the opposition's top hitters.

The Front Office: The Deal Making
Through the regular season your front office will need to react to injuries, replace underperformers, and build for the future.  Following the FAB you can continue to acquire free agents on the open market.  You can also cut multi-player trades allowing you to deal both players and cash to get what you need.  But don't give away too much for too little; it's a long season.  

 

Signup

In order to get started with gamedayritual you need to follow the registration process on the gamedayritual front page.  During the registration process you will have several options of the type of purchase you wish to make.  These are described below:

Create a Trial Team:   This allows you the opportunity to get familiar with the gamedayritual concept and interface before paying.  In fact, you can even create your ballpark!  Once you wish to join a league and get started with your season you will need to pay -- there will be instructions on how to do this at the top of each in-game page.

Purchase a New Membership:  At gamedayritual you can purchase a Gold Membership that lets you create unlimited teams for baseball for a given season, or a Platinum Membership that allows for unlimited teams in all gamedayritual sports for one year. All membership teams are Standard teams (see below), and are free from advertising in the main pages.

Create a New Team:   This will allow you to create a new individual team.  You will subsequently be able to join a public league, a private league, join a pre-paid league or create your own league for other teams to join.  This is also the option that you want to select if a friend has already created a pre-paid league and you wish to join for free.  This is the most common option for new gamedayritual users. You may create a Lite or Standard Team. Standard teams are Lite Teams with the addition of the information rich tools panels, as well as access to the Assistant GM feature, which, when the regular season rolls around, suggests trades and free agents to you as well as providing other analysis.

Create a New Pre-Paid League:   This will let you purchase an entire new pre-paid league for you and your league-mates.  The rest of your league will then be able to join for free.

Activate a Returning Team:   This will allow you to select, purchase and activate an individual team that you owned last season.  This team will be placed in the same league that it was in last season.  Please note that your league from last season does not fill you may dissolve this team and re-apply your credit to purchase another team.  This is the most common option for returning gamedayritual users.

Claim an Orphaned Team:   This will allow you to select, purchase and activate a team that was abandoned by their owner after playing last season.  Each orphaned team is in a league that was operating last season.  You can peruse a list of classified teams, or enter team, league, and password information obtained from a friendly commissioner to claim a team privately.

Activate a Returning League: If you ran a pre-paid league last year, this will let you re-purchase your entire league from last season for you and your league-mates.  The rest of your league's owners will then be able to re-join for free.

Upgrade a Lite Team: You many upgrade a Lite team to Standard level at any time.

 

Quick Start

Note: This quick start section is intended for new teams joining or creating new leagues. Returning teams will have already completed many of these requirements.

When you log in for the first time you will be brought to your league's "Page One".  This is like the front page of the sports section were you can, at a quick glance, get all the information that you need about the goings-on around your league.

Use the navigation bar at the top to go to Free Agency Blitz / Team Planner.  You will quickly get very familiar with this page as it is the primary interface for the FAB process.  Here is where you search for players, make and change bids, monitor negotiations, and start building your winner.

Before the FAB starts there are a few things that you need to do. The links below will let you jump to the necessary sections for a quick start:

Tools Pane
On the right hand side of the Clubhouse and Front Office interfaces there is a tab to enter the Tools Pane.  Here there is a summary of quick reference information about the regular season as it is progressing.  This allows you to have valuable and oft-used information at your fingertips without having to advance between screens. The tools pane is not available to Lite teams.

Help Pane
On the right hand side of the Clubhouse and Front Office interfaces there is a tab to enter the Help Pane.  Here there is a summary of quick reference information about how to interface with the system, how to conduct certain activities and what certain symbols and colors mean.


Joining, Creating or Setting Up a League

If you are using a free trial team you can play around with the Free Agency Blitz interface before paying and joining a league.  Before your FAB can start, however, you need have your team added to a league. 

There are several ways to join a league.  You can do this by either joining an existing league that is not yet full or by creating a league in which you will become the "commissioner". There are three types of leagues that you can join: Public Leagues, Private Leagues, Classifieds Leagues.  You can find these options via the "Teams" page in the "My Account" section (note: if the league that you joined was a new and pre-paid, then you have been automatically added to the league).

Joining an Existing League

There are the three routes to joining a newly-forming league (you may also create a new league -- see next section)

Join Public League

A public league is a appropriate when you want gamedayritual to automatically insert you into a certain format of league with a group of other users that also want to play that specific format.  In a public league you are not able to ensure that your friends are in the same league and are not ensured of the exact start time of the FAB at the moment that you sign up.

You can select from 8-team and 12-team public league formats.  Public leagues start no less than 48 hours after the addition of the last team in the league and the start time is optimized such that FAB free agent signings occur during the daytime hours in North America .

Join Private League

A private league is appropriate when you have a group of owners that wish to play together in the same league.  To join a private league you must get the League Name and Password from the league creator (or "commissioner") and enter it exactly as provided in the join private league interface.

Check Classifieds

There are often cases when an individual owner will want to create a league that is based on a certain theme, geography, interest, fan group, experience level, etc.   There also may be cases where a league is partially full and is looking for additional owners.  To find these leagues you go to the Classifieds.

You can leave any league until it is full, at which time your FAB is enabled, and the league is set.

Creating a Private League

To create a private league for a group of owners (who will pay for their own teams) click on "Create League". This will build a new league around the team you have selected with default settings. Once created, head to the myaccout/leagues page where you can edit your newly-created league by clicking the [Edit] button.

[EDIT]

To set up a new league click on the "Edit" button on the Leagues page.   On the following pop-up you will see options below. Be sure to put some thought into your league's initial settings if you are a Commissioner.  While you can change most of them before the FAB it is important to have them planned out.

Starting this year, to improve performance, we are introducing FAB Metering. This means only so many FABs may be run simultaneously on a given day. The % capacity for a given day is visible on the FAB date selection calendar. If a day is at capacity you may not schedule a FAB that runs through it, unless more than half of that league’s users have Gold or Platinum Memberships. Getting signed up early or rounding up other Members will ensure you can complete your FAB by the start of the MLB season.

[DIVS]

Additionally, by clicking on the "Divs" button on the Leagues page the commissioner can align and realign divisions how they wish.  Once the regular season starts divisions cannot be realigned.

[INVITE]

By clicking on the "Invite" button a commissioner can invite new owners to the league via email.  Embedded in the email will be the league name and password, providing a new user all the information they need to join.

[EMAIL]

By clicking on the "Email" button a commissioner can send an email message to each of the existing users in the league.

 

Returning League Managment

For leagues that played last season there are some additional options that the commissioner should consider. 

Note: returning public leagues from last season essentially turn into private leagues for subsequent years.  The first user who reactivates their team will be the commissioner and will be responsible for setting up the FAB .  If this user wishes to assign this role to another owner in the league they may do this through the League editor once others have joined.

Commissioners in returning leagues will also see a [GMs]  button, which allows for the editing of owners. There are a few ways in wish you might want to modify your league that will require owner managment:

Contraction: This can be handy if there are a couple team owners that are not returning this season and you wish to have their teams dissolved and their players added into the free agent pool.  Note that teams may only be removed from leagues in pairs and that this action cannot be reversed.  It is a good idea to ensure that an owner is not returning before dissolving their team.

New Ownership:   A commissioner may also remove an owner from their team, but keep the team intact.  This is valuable if there is only one owner that is not returning and as such the team cannot be removed.  The team may then be "bought" as an "orphan" by another external owner. This can be done either by private invitation or via the Orphan Team Classifieds.

Private Invitation:   This allows the commissioner, via the GMs interface on the Leagues page, to invite a new owner to acquire the orphan team via email.  Embedded in the email will be the team name and password, providing a new owner all the information they need to make the acquisition.

Orphan Team Classifieds: this allows the commissioner, via the GMs interface on the Leagues page, to publicly market the orphan team.  Included in this interface is the opportunity to write a description about the team and the league.

Expansion:   A league may be on the upswing and additional owners wish to join.  This can be accommodated in the format section of league editor after clicking the [Edit] button.  Note that for schedule balancing purposes teams can only be added in pairs.

Realignment: By clicking on the [Divs] button on the Leagues page the commissioner can align and realign divisions how they wish.  Once the regular season starts divisions cannot be realigned.

Firesale:  In the league editor a returning league commissioner has the option of enabling Firesales.  This means that any returning team has the option, at their own discretion, to completely wipe clear their roster and their financial ledger.  All players from their team will be removed, as will all contractual obligations.  Essentially the team is starting from scratch.  This option is handy for teams that are simply overly hamstrung by bad contracts from the previous season, or acquirers of orphan teams that wish to start their team with a clean slate. Once the Firesale option is turned on by a commissioner it cannot be turned off until next season. A team can activate a Firesale from the Contracts page.  This can be a very destructive activity so please use this function with care.

Contract Extensions: For returning leagues only there is an option to allow teams to extend any contract that:

  1. was acquried prior to the league's first regular season GDR game
  2. is expiring
  3. is not already an extended contract
  4. was not reclaimed by the same team off of waivers at any point during the season
This action is done from the clubhouse/contracts page and can only be executed prior to the start of the league's FAB. You may offer up to a certain total number of extension years, and up to a maximum length per player - these are league settings.  You will be able to view their contract demands on the Contracts page and make a determination whether they are worth the investment or not. The extension, if multi-year, is not renegotiated in subsequent years – it is a contract for the duration specified at the amount specified.

Enabling Transactions: Returning leagues may not begin pre-FAB transactions (ie contract extensions, waivers, trades) until every team in the league has been reactivated. At this time the commissioner may enable transactions from the [Edit] pop-up. Once transactions are enabled, certain settings including league size, contract extensions and firesales cannot be modified since owners have now begun to make decisions based on the rule set.

For leagues that are not full by the time the baseball regular season is nearing, gamedayritual will merge partially filled leagues together to create complete leagues so that their owners can complete a full FAB before the second week of the season starts.


FAB - Free Agency Blitz

So, what exactly have you signed yourself up for?

The first major activity that you undertake as an owner/GM in gamedayritual is participating in a Free Agency Blitz, or "FAB ". A normal speed FAB will take your league about 6 days to complete -- somewhat analogous to your common online "slow-live-draft".  There are also 11-day (slow) and 1-day (turbo) versions as well (the latter for adrenaline junkies only).

Your goal in the FAB is to accumulate a team of 22-28 players that will represent the core of your fantasy team during the regular season.  You will actually have both a 25-man and 40-man roster available to you during the regular season so even after the FAB you would ordinarily be wheeling, dealing and prospect-drafting to fill up your team.  Having said this, we recommend that you leave a little salary cap room for the players that you will accumulate after the FAB .

The User Guide goes into detail as to the head-to-head scoring, strategy and tactics employed during the regular season and it is highly recommended that you read it in detail.  The best way to summarize things though: pretend that you are a real-MLB GM and field manager.  How would you build your team?  All righties?  All fleet-footed?  These elements and others all affect your scoring and head-to-head match-ups during the season.  Also, this is a "dynasty league", meaning if you sign a guy for two-years, you've got him next season too!

In the FAB itself you have $100 million, 50 contract years and 3 no-trade clauses (NTs) in which to spend.  These limits apply to FAB signings only, however - and any trades, waiver claims*, prospect signings or post-FAB signings count against a single limit of $110M and are not subject to contract year or NT limits. (* Note that if a player is claimed off waivers during the FAB, and the claim completes before the end of the FAB, the claimed contract will apply against your FAB spending limit.)

The FAB is essentially an auction process where you offer contracts to players, they provide you feedback on your offers, and you decide whether to make another offer or offers.  It is a dynamic process as you, and other teams, make offers to players until they select the best one and sign.  Throughout this process you will be receiving feedback on how good your offer is, how other bids are shaping up, how many more offers the player will accept from you, etc.

The FAB works in "waves" (or "rounds") -- each FAB has 5 waves (returning leagues may shorten this), each a total of 24 hours long (in the 6-day version).  In each wave there are a total of 50 players (for a 10 team league) that are "On the Market" and can be offered contracts.  As the players from one wave sign and a new set of 50 players are simultaneously added for a second wave.  That is, just after each player signs, a new player comes on the market.  This way there is always an active market of 50 players to negotiate with (except for at the beggining of the first wave and the end of the last wave).

So which players are On the Market?  You decide this as a league.  You take turns making "First Offers" to players until you each have made 5 First Offers to 5 unique players.  This First Offer is essentially like announcing to the press that you are offering a certain player a contract and them subsequently responding "I am now On the Market".  Your league will be making, in turns, a First Offer to a new player every ten minutes for 10 hours at the beginning of each wave (in the slow setting).  So, your team, if it is in a 10 team league, will be making a First Offer to a player every two hours. (note: you do not actually have to make an offer each time it is your turn to - see Autobid)

Now, do you need to be at your computer every two hours for this?  No.  All you need to do is "queue" players that you would like to introduce On the Market.  This is called the "First Offer Queue".  When it is your turn to make a First Offer and put a player On the Market, the system will take the top eligible, available player in your First Offer Queue and make him the offer that you have prescribed.

Just a couple of notes:

Also, please note that you can change an offer to a player at any time before he is On the Market without penalty.  Once he is On the Market, however, you can only change it a limited number of times based on the feedback that you receive.  Also, lowering or rescinding an offer when a player is On the Market, or making a late offer to a player, will be perceived negatively and will lower your GM Rating.

Build Your Stadium

Before you can start signing players you need to have your "stadium deal" in place.  Don't worry, one thing that we left out is the red tape of cutting a deal with the City, getting the land and finding the guaranteed loans.  In gamedayritual you've got the cash, but you still have to decide how you are going to spend it.

This is your first opportunity to think about the type of team that you are going to build.  Are you going to focus on pitching and build a stadium with long power alleys, tall outfield walls and a grass turf?  Or are you going to build a hitters park with a dome at altitude and a short porch in left field for your righty sluggers?  It is all up to you but you have to think it out first before you embark on acquiring players.

To build your stadium you must go to your Stadium page.  You can do this either by clicking on the link on the alert in your FAB Tools Panel or by selecting Stadium in the "The Franchise" drop down menu.

By default you will have an average stadium loaded that you can keep or, preferably, change to your liking.

Change the Stadium Parameters such as the name, capacity, elevation, surface, roof, wall heights and wall distances.  All of these (with the exception of the name and capacity) will have an effect on the hitters and pitchers that play there.  Press "Redraw/Recalculate" to see the effects that your changes will have on the stadium's Park Factors.

The Park Factors affect you and your opponent's hitters as well as pitchers.  In this example a traditional grass ballpark has been built at nearly sea-level.  Walls are variable height, with the left field wall towering to compensate for its short distance (sound familiar?).  What are the effects of this type of ballpark design?  Well, righty sluggers are going to have a tough time hitting the ball over the left field wall (only a 1% boost in HRs) but are going to love banging the ball off of it for plenty of doubles (a 23% boost).  Also, plenty of runs are scored in this park (11% boost for both righty and lefty hitters).

What do we mean by boost?  Well, this park has a 1.23 factor on doubles (2Bs) for right handed hitters, meaning that every 2B fantasy point that a right handed hitter gets will be increased in value by 23%.

There are also pitcher specific factors that are handed independent. For example, this park has a 1.11 factor on runs (R), meaning that every run that is given up by a pitcher is increased in value by 11% when calculating the pitcher's fantasy points.

The effect on switch hitters in a particular park is a factor that is set between the effect on lefties and the effect on righties.  Where on the scale between those two effects is based on the ratio of lefty pitching versus righty pitching your opponent fields that week.

For example, if your opponent sends out mostly right handed pitchers against you, your switch hitter will be left-hitting most of the week.  As such, he will have park effects pretty close to the regular lefty hitter park effects.

In short, if you were to build a club around this ballpark you would want to try to maximize the number of righty hitters that can pull line drives for doubles.  In addition, you want to make sure that they are "run scorers" as this is a hitter friendly park!

If you need any help on this section (or any other section) in figuring out what things mean or what they do you can always click on the Help tab in the Tool Panel on the right.  The Help tab will always have information specific to the page that you are currently viewing.

Once you have created a park that you like you must save it by pressing "Save This Stadium".  You can still change the Stadium's attributes at any time before the FAB if you wish by returning to this page via "The Franchise" drop down menu.  Once the FAB has started, however, your Stadium is locked and cannot be changed until next season.

If you own a retuning team from last season, you're in luck!  Your board has approved expenditures for renovation and/or relocation, which means that you can make any changes that you wish to your existing ball park design.  Just be sure to make and save them before the start of your league's FAB !

First Offers and the First Offer Queue

The FAB can seem like a complicated whirlwind process but, in fact, it can be managed quite easily by the tools built into gamedayritual.  In fact, the way that the FAB and its tools have been structured you really only need to be at your computer five times during the whole FAB process!

The First Offer Queue (FOQ) frees you from having to wait at the computer until it is your turn to make a First Offer a player --- careful planning and consideration of the players that you would like to see On The Market and what your First Offer will be is all you need.

Also, if another team makes a First Offer on a player when it is their turn, and you have that player in your FOQ, you will also submit an offer to that player, no matter where he is in your FOQ.  Therefore, it is important to make sure that any players that are in your FOQ have decent and intentional contract offers attached to them as they could be bid at any time.

During each wave of the FAB, each team, in order, introduces five players onto the market (providing them "First Offers"), each taken from their FOQ.  Players in the FOQ are ranked in the order you'd like to issue them First Offers, and subsequently introduce them to the market.  When the time comes for your club to make a First Offer the top eligible player in your FOQ will automatically be introduced to the market.  This player then becomes On The Market "OTM".  A player may only be injected by a single team, however, so you need to maintain a decent sized list of players in your FOQ as other teams will inject players that you have queued (especially in the later waves).  If you do not have any players in your FOQ, the system will then defer to the preferences that you have set up on your Auto-Bid page and make a First Offer on a player from there.

Setting Up Your First Offer Queue

So how do you add a player to your FOQ?  The first thing that you need to do is search for a player in the Player Database in the Team Planner.  This is a pop-up window that can be accessed by pressing "Launch Player DB" at the top of the Team Planner page.  Make sure that you allow pop-ups when you are playing gamedayritual -- many key functionalities depend on it -- but don't worry, none of the pop-ups will be ads.  You can search several different ways: by name, by position, by team, by fantasy points, by position etc.   There are many different ways that you can implement a search or sort for a particular player.

In this example we did a search/sort for all 1Bs and pressed "Go".  Up came the top 10 players (based on the specified season's fantasy points) that met those criteria.  You can sort by various other criteria by clicking on the column headers.

We wish to add D. Lee to our FOQ. To do this we clicked on the checkbox on the right side of each of their lines and press the "Add" button at the bottom.   He will be added to our 1B queue (if he played multiple positions he could be added to a different queue if we wished).  Also note that you can select multiple players at one time to add to a queue.

With Lee now added to our 1B queue we must indicate that we would like to make a First Offer on him, adding him to our FOQ.  Again, this means that when it is our team's turn to add a player On the Market, and he is at the top of our list, he will be offered a contract.  In addition, if any other team introduces him On the Market a bid will automatically be submitted to him from our team.

First, click on "1B" on the Team Planner to bring up the detailed queue view. You should see something like the image below:

Now click on the checkbox on the left.  This adds him to the FOQ (you will be given a warning to this effect, click OK).  If you were to visit the FOQ page at this point, Lee would appear there.
But, while we're here, we should amend the offer as the default is his minimum acceptable bid and generally this will not be considered very competitive.  In this example we are going to initially offer him a $7.0M per year, 2 year contract without a "no-trade clause".  Click "Save". You should now see, in the Team Planner, Lee checked off (that means he's in your FOQ) and with a healthy opening bid prepared:

The grey bar behind his name means that he is not yet On the Market (no team has made a First Offer to him yet).  Once his is On the Market that bar will turn green and start to "tick" down, indicating that he is approaching a decision to accept a contract.

The "Max: 2" means that the system will only allow active offers from our team on two first basemen at any one time.  This is to prevent a team from accidentally overextending itself and acquiring too many players at one position.  If you would like to increase this number click on the "1B" text to open the detailed queue view and change the "Max to Pursue at This Time" value.

Now, search for and add more players in this same manner until you have 10-20 players that you would like to pursue in positional queues and added to your FOQ.

Next, lets set the order that we would like to pursue these players.  To do this click on the First Offer Queue tab.

Once you have a group of players that you do want to make First Offers to you can reorder them any way that you wish.  You can do this by dragging-and-dropping them, or by using the "move up" and "move down" buttons.  Make sure, however, that after you have made any changes that you press the "Save" button.

Now you have your First Offer Queue set up and you are ready for you FAB to start.  During the FAB you should keep a keen eye on your FOQ to make sure that it does not run low (or empty --- as this will result in the system using Auto-Bid to automatically select a player and put him On the Market).

If you find that a player is "greyed out" in the FOQ it means that there are other player(s) ahead of him in that positional queue in the Team Planner AND you have "Max to Pursue" set in that queue to too low of value (if you wish that player to be bid upon).  This means that if the greyed player moves to the top of your First Offer Queue he will not be injected.  In addition, if another team places him On the Market you will not automatically bid on him.

If you want the system to bid on multiple players in the same position queue at the same time then you will need to set your Max to Pursue in that queue to a higher number.  Be careful though. this is a safety mechanism to prevent you from accidentally offering contracts to too many players at the same position at the same time.

An alternative is: if the player(s) in that position queue that are above the player that is greyed out are not yet On the Market, you can move them below the currently greyed (ineligible) player by moving them down in your First Offer Queue (in the First Offer Queue page).

The Team Planner

There are 15 queues that are represented graphically in the Team Planner.  They are: C, 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, OF1, OF2, OF3, SP1, SP2, SP3, SP4, SP5, MR, SU and Cls. There are no dedicated DH or FR queues. You may also add additional queues if you wish (called Open queues) in order to plan your team.  Any player at any position eligibility may be mixed and matched in the Open queues. Returning teams will find their players that are still under contract from last season in this view.

Once a player is in one of your positional queues he will also show up in your FOQ.  From the FOQ you can order players based on your preference on how you want them introduced to the market (this can be done via the move buttons or drag-and-drop --- be sure to press "save")

The intent of the position queues is to allow you, the GM, to plan your bidding and negotiations with players, track who is not yet On The Market, as well as monitor the progress of certain free agents all from one interface.  This is essentially the core interface for the FAB --- a lot of information is provided here.

The positional queues correspond to each position on your complete roster.  A player may only be added to a queue if he is eligible to play the position that corresponds to that queue (Open queues have no position associated with them).  For flexibility, however, you may later move a player to a position queue of which he is not eligible. If you do so you will be warned that player is currently not eligible to play at the position indicated by the queue.

You can add as many players as you wish to the position queues in the Team Planner.  If you add a player to a queue and he is not yet On The Market, an empty box will appear beside his name.  If you check the box, the Team Planner will automatically bid on him if he is On The Market and there is not a maximum number of players currently bid upon in that queue.  If he does not meet these criteria, once a queue position becomes available a bid will be submitted. 

Players On The Market

When a player goes On The Market, or "OTM", they will remain there for 24 hours (depending on your FAB OtM Duration), and at the end of that period they will sign with one of the teams in the league.  The only way that a player won't sign with a team is if all his offers are rescinded by all of the clubs in the league, or he was never offered a contract in the first place.  If that player comes back OTM again, all teams may bid on him that previously did not rescind an offer on that player.

When a player is OTM you may still bid on that player at any time during the 24 hour period.  Anytime you bid on a player, you will receive feedback from him indicating the perceived quality of your bid relative to others that he has received.  By default, however, you will not know what other teams have bid on that player or how much they bid (although some of that information my become available if your GM Rating grows --- to be explained later)

The way that a player provides you feedback on your bid is via a colour "bid quality" classification system in the Team Planner.  In addition to the bid quality classification, there is only a number provided indicating the number of additional bids the player is willing to accept from you.

The number of additional bids a player is willing to accept is defined by the bid quality of your First Offer on a player.  In other words, it is a good idea to start off with a decent offer in order to receive the right to continue negotiating.  If your First Offer is insulting (i.e. low compared to other offers that he has received) he may decide that he will not accept further offers from you.

The initial bid quality classifications fit into three categories: red, yellow, and green.  The meanings of these bids are as follows:

Color

Meaning

Additional Bids

After First Bid

Red

Your bid is near the bottom end of bids for this player (i.e. not within 20% of the top bid in gross perceived value)

0

Yellow

Your bid is very competitive with best bid and may, in fact, be the best current bid, but not in the clear.

1

Green

Your bid is currently the top bid for a given player by a healthy margin (i.e. over 20% higher gross perceived value than the next best bid)

2

The status of the bids that you have on all players is visible to you on your Team Planner page, represented by the color of the box to the left of the player's name in the graphical position queue.

In this example, the offer made by this team to A. Rodriguez is the best one yet, and by a healthy margin.  In addition, this team has two more opportunities to change their bid.  The offer to D. Wright received is competitive but not necessarily the best.  In addition, this team only has one more chance to improve their offer.

It is important to note that once you bid again, or if some one else out bids you or withdraws, other color/number combinations like “Red 2’s” and “Green 0’s” are possible.

To make a bid on a player they must be in one of your positional queues.  From there you can see his minimum acceptable required annual salary, the amount of time before he comes off the market and some abbreviated statistics.  Here you can edit and submit a bid to that player.

You can also mouse over players in the mini-queues in your Team Planner page - if you have a bid on them you can get Insider Info.  The higher your GM Rating, the more detailed the information will be (effects are cumulative):

GM Rating

Additional Insider Information

0 to 50

No Insider Information

50 to 70

Knowledge of number of teams in negotiations

70 to 80

Knowledge of which teams in negotiations

80 to 90

Knowledge of which team made the most recent bid.

90 to 100

Knowledge of ranking of each team in negotiations and who has the best current bid.

100

Knowledge of the best offer's annual cash amount.

At any point while a player is OTM, you may lower your bid or even rescind your offer.  If you do so, however, your GM rating will take a hit, impeding your future ability to do business in the league.

To see all players that are OTM at any given time you can refer to the On The Market tab in the FAB section or click on the "Show all Un-Queued Players On the Market" box in the Team Planner.

You can offer as many contract to as many players as you wish during the FAB .  However, you can only make offers up to 150% of your available remaining cash salary cap space - the system will ensure this.  Once you are at 150% you cannot make any new offers until a player signs, you lower or rescind an offer or remove a player from your First Offer Queue.  This "Allocation" calculation is derived from the cash that you have available minus existing commitments to signed players, players with offers On The Market, and players in your First Offer Queue - as well as any cash from trades.

You can offer any number of contract years and any number of no-trade clauses during the FAB.  Having said this, if you end up making an offer to a unique player and you do not have the resources remaining to fulfill that offer (i.e. you are out of contract years or NT clauses) then the offer will be rescinded at the moment of signing, regardless of whether you have the high bid or not. As such, it is important that when you are running low on contract years or no-trade clauses that you do not have any individual offers issued that will extend you beyond what you can afford.

It is important to try to exhibit some spending "self control".  Just like in real baseball, gamedayritual GMs can sometimes wildly overspend sometimes and get themselves into situations where they are barely able to field a team with $100M.  You have been warned!

GM Rating

GM rating is a measure of your reputation around the virtual league you are playing in. GM rating can affect your offer's perceived value to up to +/-10%, but you do not need to be regarded as a nice GM to win.

All offers are considered by the players as "binding".  You may choose to reduce or even rescind an offer, but it will not help your reputation around the league and with the players.  A bad rep means it may be tougher to do business with future free agents on the open market, but, that may be better then ending up with an asset you don't want to pay for!

Another way to hurt your GM rating is to make your offer to a player after they have been On The Market for a substantial period of time.  Players don't appreciate GMs that sit on the sidelines waiting for bargains to develop!

Your GM rating can be boosted based on the First Offers you make.  So making competitive, genuine offers will give your team a considerable advantage.

Actions that will Raise Your GM Rating

A strong First Offer to a player that results in a "green-2"

+2 points

A competitive First Offer to a player that results in a "yellow-1"

+1 point

Signing a player

+2 points

Completed Trade*

+5 points

 

Actions that will Lower Your GM Rating

Issuing any late offer on a Player (e.g. last 10% of his availability period On the Market)

-1 to -10 points

Rescinding an Offer on a Player

-3 points if red

-6 points if yellow

-9 points if green

Lowering an Offer to a Player

-1 for every million in value (E3YV) 

(up to -15)

Failing to sign a player you have an offer out to at sign-time

-1 point

Waiving a player

-3 points

Vetoed Trade*

-3 points

*(league option)

 

Your GM rating will be displayed to you on a scale from 0 to 100.  All new GMs start with a 50 rating and can climb or drop from there.  The GM Rating for returning GMs start with a rating between 40 and 60 depending on their GM Rating at the end of last season. Effective at the start of the 2009 season, the range (40-60) can be customized by each league's comissioner.   You can see the actions that you took that affected your GM Rating by clicking on its display in the Tools panel.  Keep a keen eye on what you are doing that can affect your GM Rating!

Keep in mind that if you intend to rescind an offer to a player that you make sure that you refresh your screen before doing so.  It is possible that another team could have rescinded their offer since your last refresh, resulting in a status change in your negotiations and changing the penalty for your rescinded offer.

Your GM rating is a reflection of your reputation around the league as an honest broker, and someone who stays true to their word, not a GM that just "wins" free agents or can manipulate the system.  A solid GM rating reflects a GM who plays hard, but treats the other owners and the game with respect.  A weaker GM rating means you're probably willing to deal out a few below the belt blows, and overextend yourself financially --- a kind of strategy that will generally catch up with you in the later waves.

Signings

The contracts that you offer players include both a dollar amount per season, a number of contract years and incentives (a no-trade clause).  Note that you can only sign three players to no-trade clauses during the FAB so make sure that you use them wisely.

Keep in mind that gamedayritual is a generally a legacy-based, multi-year experience.  Players that you sign this season for more than one year will be on your roster at the beginning of next season as well.

The maximum dollar amount that you can offer a player is proportional to their MinSal but tops out at $30M per year, and all contracts are offered in $0.5M per year increments.  The maximum length of contract you are allowed to offer is three years (your board of directors will not allow you to offer more).

Each player in the league will have a published minimum bid that they are willing to entertain.  This is the lowest annual amount that you can offer a player, and is based wholly on his past production.

Each player will evaluate the offer made to him in their own way. Generally, the older a player is the more he is going to value a long-term, multi-year contract offer.  The younger a player is, the more he is going to prefer an offer that is rich and shorter in term.  Essentially young players that are approaching their prime years will be looking to avoid getter locked up in a long term deal unless there is a lot of money attached.  Older players are often looking to sign the last deal of their careers and want as much security that they can get.

An example:  Consider two players of similar value, Brian Giles (age 35) and Miguel Cabrera (age 22).  Both had close to 500 fantasy points in 2005.  In the case of Giles, he would prefer a $6.0M/YR contract over 3 years versus a $8.0M contract for only one year.  On the other hand, the youngster Cabrera would accept the $8.0M one year contract over the $6.0M/YR contract over 3 years.

A no-trade clause can improve the perceived value of your bid by 10%-30%, depending on how long the contract offer is for.

Note that if a player that you signed retires in "real-life" he will sit on your roster for the duration of his contract and will continue to collect a salary.  You can, however, release him and only be on the hook for 50% of his remaining salary.  As such, it can be dangerous to offer aging veterans long term contracts.

By default your bids are not visible to any of the other team in the league, and none of the other team's bids are visible to you.  This may not remain the case if you or your opponents develop a high GM Rating and get access to enhanced Insider Information.

Players evaluate all contracts over three years – even if you only offer one year. They do this by estimating what they would make in the remaining years. The total value of a contract to a player when GM Rating and age are taken into account is referred to as the Expected 3-Year Value (or E3YV). You can explore the relationships of the various factors using the Bid Calculator links in the detailed queue views off of the TeamPlanner.

The Countdown to Signing
You can track when a player is going to sign a number of ways.  First of all you reference the "On The Market" page to see players come off the market one by one.  Second, if you have the player in a queue you can go to the detailed queue view to see exactly when he plans to sign.

Additionally (and perhaps most conveniently) there is a green bar behind the player's name on the graphical position queues on the Team Planner page.  As the bar ticks down the player is approaching signing.

This bar will eventually turn black in leagues that have enabled a blackout period. With this setting, a player randomly enters a deliberation period where no further bid modifications are possible somewhere between 75% of their total time on the market and 100%. (In limited blackout leagues, GMs already "in" on a player may continue)

A Player is Signed
Once a player is signed by your team the box beside his name turns green and an "S" appears.  In addition, the background behind his name is green on the graphical interface.

If you were bidding on a player and had him in your queue and he is signed by another team his name turns red and an "X" appears. In addition, the background behind his name is red on the graphical interface.  At this point you may elect to delete the player from your queue in the detailed view of the Team Planner in order the clean up the view (however this will delete your bidding history with him in the League Progress page).

Auto-Bid

Given that not all people can be at their computers all the time, an Auto-Bid mechanism has been built into gamedayritual so that your First Offer Queue (FOQ) will auto-populate if it becomes empty. This way if you are absent for a wave of the FAB you can set up a set of rules of what positions you would like to pursue and what bidding strategy you would like used.

The Auto-Bid system is only activated when there are no eligible players remaining you FOQ.  It is a good idea that before the FAB you set up the Auto-Bid system to your preference as users are often caught off-guard when their FOQs run empty.

The first and most important aspect of the Auto-Bid mechanism is to set whether you want the system to just put a player On the Market and make no offer, or put a player On the Market and tender an offer.  This is a very important distinction.  When you are out of resources near the end of a FAB (be it salary cap space, contract years and/or NT clauses) it is best to have your Auto-Bid set to the first setting.  This way you can let your FOQ run empty and when it is your team's turn to make a First Offer it will do so, but your team will not be obligated to make an offer.

The second setting is the default and used throughout the FAB as a "backup" should you be away from your computer long enough to let your FOQ run empty.

The next step of setting up the Auto-Bid is selecting your bidding strategy.  Here you decide whether all players that you would like to have Auto-Bid (and subsequently used in your FOQ) to be of the same value (constant), a large variation in value (exponential), or somewhere in between (linear, quadratic).  If you select constant, all of the remaining cash and contract year that you have available will be spread equally to the remainder of your bids and the system will determine what players you can afford with that strategy.  If you select exponential, most of your remaining cash and contract years will be focussed towards a few, elite players and the rest will be distributed to much cheaper, lower tier players.  Play around with the settings and watch how the Auto-Bid queue adapts to your changes.

In addition to selecting how funds are distributed between offers, you must also choose how large you want your offers to be relative to the player's minimum asking price.  Selecting a high value (for example, 120%) will likely guarantee signing these players but might be a waste of money in same cases.  Selecting a low value (for example, 30%) will likely not be enough to win the bidding wars that will likely ensue for the players you introduce to the market.

You must also make a provision for how much money you want the system to "hold back" for the after the FAB .  If you were to leave the Auto-Bid system running unchecked independently it would make sure that all of your money was spent, right down to the last free agent you sign! Remember that after the FAB your team will receive an additional $10 million in salary cap space, as well as have no further limits on gross contract years or no-trade clauses.

Next you must indicate to the system which positions you want to be pursuing with highest priority.  If you feel that there is a specific position scarcity in the market that you want the Auto-Bid system to address while you are absent, put that position at the top of the position rankings.  The position rankings will essentially define who you are bidding on next.

 

In the example above the top ranked position is 3B.  This position will not be addressed by the Auto-Bid system, however, as on the Team Planner only one player was to be signed that that has already occurred (hence the "At Max" message).  Next is Cls (Closer), of which there is already a player signed (or bid upon) as indicated by the "(1/2)" message and as such is not a high priority. The "Pursuing" message indicates that once all positions have at least one player in them then this will be the first backup position pursued.  Again, SS is full.  Next, SP1 is not filled but already has a player selected in the team's FOQ, which supersedes the Auto-Bid system.

The first position considered by the Auto-Bid system is OF1.  There are currently no players signed in that position and no players in the FOQ in that position.   Therefore the top affordable player that is eligible for that position (Johnny Damon) is queued up.  If the FOQ were to empty and it was this team's turn to introduce a player to the market, it would be Johnny Damon with a First Offer of $10.0M/1YR.

Again, the Auto-Bid system is a handy "backup" for teams that inadvertently let their FOQ run empty or when a team GM simply knows that they will not be able to access a computer or the internet for a period during the FAB.


Regular Season

Once you have completed the Free Agency Blitz it is time to fine tune your roster and get ready for the regular season.  Most teams coming out of the FAB will have acquired around 22 to 28 players --- enough to field a team but still with room to grow.

Once you finish the FAB you will be allowed to spend an additional $10M on top of the cash you have remaining from the FAB to acquire the remainder of your team via free agent signings and trades.  In total you will have $110M in financial resources to work with during the season.  You are not limited in the number of contract years or no-trade clauses you can carry during the regular season.

Position Eligibility

A player that appears in 10 or more games at a position in the previous season is eligible to play that position in the upcoming season. Once a player plays 10 or more games at a new position in the current season they are eligible to play that position starting the following week's match-up. If, in the previous season a player started less than 10 games at any non-DH position and the majority of his appearances are were not at the DH position, they will is assigned a single, primary position by the system based on his fielding experience (most applicable for rookies, imports, and players that were injured most or all of the previous season). Players who appeared primarily as DHs and do not manage 10 games at any other position will only be eligible at DH.

There are no position eligibility limits on pitchers, but pitchers only receive points in certain roles (see below).

Rosters

Just like in real baseball, in gamedayritual there are two rosters: the 25-man roster and the 40-man roster; as well a few "non-roster" positions that players can hold.  You can move players between these rosters in the Front Office section --- but be careful --- there are limits on how and when you are allowed to move players.

Note that you do not have to fill your 25-man or 40-man rosters completely at any time.  If you have enough healthy players to field a full line-up with backups and pitching rotation (with Spot Starter and Bullpen) your team is considered "active".  Only when you do not have enough players on your 25-man roster to do this, and it is in this state for an extended period of time, can your team be potentially flagged by the system as "dead".  If no action is taken for a period of time the team can be taken over and managed by a new owner in order to maintain its competitiveness for the rest of the league's owners.

To view a complete breakdown of the roster status of every player that you have on your team (as well as outstanding payments that may still need to be made to players no longer on your team) go to the Contract tab of the Front Office section.

The 25-man Roster
This roster consists of your active "major league" team.  These players were likely acquired during the FAB and can be placed in your line-up at any time.  If you completed the FAB with less than 25 players (which is quite common) you will likely be spending the days before the start of the MLB season assembling the remainder of your 25-man roster through trades and free agent signings.

The 40-man Roster
This roster is essentially an additional 15 spots above your active 25-man rosters and consists of two distinct components:

Notes : Trips to the 15-day DL are not considered demotions and can be conducted any number of times with an individual player in a season.  In addition, if a player changes teams he once again can be assigned to the minors once (or three times, depending on age) by his new team (i.e. his minors eligibility is "reset").  If his original team re-acquires him, his minors eligibility is also reset.  Minors eligibility is also reset at the beginning of each season.  A player must spend at least one full weekly match-up in the minors before rejoining the 25-man roster in a call-up.  There are no limits on how long a player can remain in the minors.

Non-Roster States
There are also three different ways that you can have rights to a player that is not on either of your 25-man or 40-man rosters: if they are on the 60-day DL, if they are pending "assignment" or if they are an unsigned Prospect.

As of 12:00AM ET on September 1st, Active Rosters are expanded to 40 players.

Prospects

Each June there will be a separate five round draft for Prospects.  Only leagues who have completed their FABs by this time will participate. Any players that are 22 years of age or younger as of Jan 1 of the current year, have played a game in MLB and is not currently on a roster in your league are eligible for the Prospects Draft.  In addition, a select group of highly touted young non-MLB players will also be available in the Prospects Draft.

If your team is a member of a returning league the draft order will be the reverse of the league standings that from the previous season.  That is, the team that was in last place will select first in each round, and the team that was in first place will select last in each round.

If your team is a member of a league created in in the current year, the draft order will be established randomly when the season starts (this is a change as of 2013 to facilitate static, tradeable draft picks). 

Expansion teams will precede returning teams regardless of this year's standings and will be ranked amongst themselves by this year's standings. Tiebreakers in all cases are cash left, and then random selection.

If you select a prospect in the draft, he is on your team but you do not need to immediately sign him to a contract.  He will stay in a Prospect state for the entire remainder of the season, as well as two additional full seasons, unless you elect to release or sign him.

If you decide you would like to sign a prospect in order to bring him to your 25-man or 40-man Roster, you may do so at any time (after the player has made their MLB debut) during the first 2 seasons of rights ownership for a contract duration of 3 years (this includes the current season). In third and final season of rights ownership you may only sign the prospect to a 2-year contract. (As of 2009, prospect rights duration is a league setting; it is the final contract year in which you may only sign the player to 2 years)  You cannot negotiate with a prospect, he will demand an annual contract amount that you must either accept or decline.  If you decline, the prospect will simply remain in Prospect state, unsigned.  If you accept, he will be placed Pending Assignment; will now count against your salary cap; and can be called up to your 25-man Roster.

Prospects will demand an annual contract amount based on a combination of their MLB success and site-wide demand. If a prospect is both (a) starting to accumulate significant FP, and (b) owned in a higher percentage of leagues, this value will drift upwards.

If a prospect is released he becomes a free agent unless he has never played a MLB game, at which point he will not be available until next season's Prospects draft or until he plays an MLB game.  If he is still under 22 years of age at the beginning of the following season he will again be eligible for the Prospects Draft.

Transactions

All transactions for a given week (or midweek games in twice-a-week leagues) must be completed prior to the first MLB game played in that timeframe.  Transactions made after this time will be active for the next scheduled game.  This includes all roster and line-up changes, waiver claims, strategy adjustments, etc.  If a trade is pending review when this weekly deadline passes - should it complete successfully - the players involved will be active for their new teams the following week. Players traded midweek will finish their games with their old teams and continue to collect points. All transactions - Free Agency, Waivers, and Trades complete in the league-specified Transaction Time which ranges from 1-72 hours.

Free Agents

You can sign available free agents at any time during the regular season.  In gamedayritual, any player that is in the player database and not on a team roster or on waivers is available to be signed.  Generally this includes any player that has played at least one MLB game in the past two years plus the current year.  Players that have not played an MLB game are not available as free agents but may be available in the Prospects Draft in June.

To make an offer on a Free Agent (after the FAB ) you can do so by going to the PlayerActivity tab of the Front Office section.  Here you can launch a regular-season version of the player database and sort for eligible free agents.  Once you find the player that you wish to pursue add them as you did in the FAB - only now - there is just one big queue on the Player Activity page to put them all in.  Your player will be listed below of all currently "On the Market" players (i.e. all players that teams in your league are currently attempting to acquire via free agency). You can edit and sumbit a player offer here.

After the regular season starts (i.e. Week 1 onwards) a player's MinSal will decline by $0.5M every two weeks. Their MinSal will continue to decline until it reaches either $1.0M or half the original MinSal value; whichever value is higher.

Similar to the FAB , once an offer has been submitted, the player will be On The Market (OTM) for 1-72 hours from the time of the initial offer depending on your league settings.  During that time any other teams in your league can make offers to that player as well and you can change or even rescind your offer.  You can use the Player Activity tab of the Front Office section to make or change offers to players that you or other teams have placed On the Market.

Similar mechanics as the FAB apply to free agent bidding and acquisition during the regular season.  The green, yellow, red offer feedback system is in place; GM Rating is affected positively by making good initial offers and is affected negatively by rescinding, lowering or making late offers, etc.   The key difference is that multi-year and no-clause bases contracts cannot be offered. Contracts are therefore evaluated based on salary, MinSal, and GM Rating only.

Note that if you plan on playing a player in the up-coming match-up you will need to make an offer to him sufficiently early so that their On the Market time concludes before the roster change deadline for that match-up for him to join your team in time.  In addition you will also have to make sure that he is "assigned" a roster position from the "pending assignments" state once he does sign with your team (i.e. he will not be automatically added to your 25-man roster and be assigned a position).

Free agents are only paid for the period that they are on your team.  For example, if you sign a player after 20% of the season is completed (example, after week 5) to a $5.0M/1YR contract, you will only have to pay him $4.0M for the period that they are on your team (assuming he remains on your team for the rest of the season).  To make this easier to understand, in the Main tab of the Tools Panel in the Front office section you are shown a "$/Y Equiv value".  This shows you, based on the amount of salary cap space your team has remaining and the number of weeks remaining in the season, how much "annualized salary" you can afford.  In the example below: if after 20% of the season you have $4.0M in salary cap space available you can essentially afford a player with a $5M/1YR contract and as such the $/Y Equiv. value will show $5.0M.

All bidding for free agents done during the season is done on an annualized basis, i.e. all offers that you make to free agents are values based on "if the player was on your team for a full season".  As explained above, however, if the player is acquired halfway through the season you only own him half of his annual salary.  Bidding is done based on annualized salaries to keep the use of fractional contract offer amounts in the interface to a minimum.

Waivers

A player is placed on Waivers for one of three reasons: (1) to give them their outright release from your team; (2) to attempt to have another team acquire him and his remaining contract; or (3) he was pending assignment, no action was taken by the owner within the time required and no space was available for him on the 40-man Roster.  A team may claim their own player from waivers.

A player is on Waivers for the specified league Transaction Time (1-72 hrs).  During that period any team may act to claim that player as long as they are willing to move them to their 25-man roster after the successful claim.  Prior to the scoring of the fifth week of a league's season, waiver claim priority is given to the team with the least recent waiver claim.  If there are several teams that have not made a waiver claim then priority is given to the team with the smallest payroll.  After the scoring of the fifth week of a league's season priority is given to the team that is lowest in the standings at the start of the week.  If two or more teams are tied in the standings, the team with the lowest Fantasy Points total (FPs) is given priority.  If there is a tie in FPs, the team with the lowest salary budget at the completion of their league's FAB is given priority.

If a team waives a player and he is claimed, that player's full remaining salary is transferred to the claiming team.  If a team waives a player and he is not claimed, the waived team is still responsible to pay 50% of that player's salary for the remainder of its duration.  This "buyout" amount is paid on a distributed basis over the life of the contract.

A team may claim their own player off of waivers. In this case no money is lost – but the ability to extend an eligible contract is. Any other teams claiming an extendable contract will retain the ability.

Waiving a player will deduct 3 points from your GM rating.

Trades

Trades can be accepted up until the 48hrs after the MLB trading deadline of the current year. (The deadline will usually be on 11:59 p.m. ET on August 2.)

Trades can include any number of players as well as cash.  If a player is traded, the acquiring team is responsible for the remainder of his salary while the trading team is responsible for the salary already paid to that player.

Trading cash can be handy to address the cost of acquiring a player that may have a substantial contract.  In effect this can be considered the trading team "picking up a portion" of his contract while he plays on his new team.  Cash is not annually pro-rated though - it essentially increases the gross salary cap of the receiving team by the amount of the cash transferred (and, conversely, lowers the gross salary cap of the offering team).

A trade, once accepted by all teams involved, takes the league Transaction Time to clear.  In that time the rest of the league has an opportunity to vote on the trade.  If a trade receives a veto vote from at least half of all teams in the league not invloved in the trade during this period, the trade will be vetoed at the end of the trading period.

A trade may not be consummated any faster than the league Transaction Time. Even if a trade is guaranteed to be accepted or rejected via voting - the trade will remain so as to allow all users to view, vote, and comment on the trade, and to prevent manipulation by cliques voting friendly trades through faster.

A completed trade will result in a +5 GM Rating bonus. A vetoed trade will result in a -3 GM Rating penalty.

Under most circumstances you cannot trade a player that has a no-trade clause in his contract.  An exception will be made, however, if the trading team has a record at .450 or below and the receiving team has a record at .550 or above and it is after Week 10 of the season.  In this scenario the player is willing to waive his no-trade clause in order to move from a losing team to a winning team.  The no-trade clause will once again be in effect for that player on his new team.  

If there is ever dispute between trading parties or non-trading parties involving a vetoed trade or the prospect of collusion then the gamedayritual staff will allow feedback from the involved parties and make a binding decision.  All decisions made by gamedayritual are final and cannot be appealed.


Scoring

gamedayritual uses a head-to-head fantasy points style for scoring.  This basic methodology, however, has been modified to capture the strategy elements built into the game.

The team that accumulates the most fantasy points (basic plus bonuses and strategy adjustments) during a weekly head-to-head match-up wins the game.  If there is a tie at the end of a weekly match-up, the home team wins.  Fantasy Point calculations are rounded to the closest 10th of a point.

In a given week you are required to set 19 positions: C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, OF1, OF2, OF3, DH, SP1, SP2, SP3, SP4, SP5, SPS, MR, SU, Cls, FR.  This is done through the Clubhouse section.

Basic Scoring
All scoring starts off with this basic scoring platform:

Hitters:

R

H

2B

3B

HR

RBI

SB

CS

BB

SO

IBB

HBP

SH

SF

GIDP

E

1

1

1

2

3

1

2

-1

1

-1

1

1

1

1

-1

-1

Pitchers:

Starters (SP):

W

L

SV

BS

HO

IP

H

ER

BB

IBB

HRA

HBP

K

CG

SHO

NH

PG

10

-5

0

0

0

3

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

1

5

5

10

10

 
 

Middle Relievers (MR)

W

L

SV

BS

HO

IP

H

ER

BB

IBB

HRA

HBP

K

CG

SHO

NH

PG

10

-5

0

0

10

3

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

1

5

5

10

10

Set-Up Relievers (SU):  

W

L

SV

BS

HO

IP

H

ER

BB

IBB

HRA

HBP

K

CG

SHO

NH

PG

10

-5

5

-2.5

10

3

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

1

5

5

10

10

 Closers (CL):  

W

L

SV

BS

HO

IP

H

ER

BB

IBB

HRA

HBP

K

CG

SHO

NH

PG

10

-5

10

-5

5

3

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

-1

1

5

5

10

10

 


Key: HBP (Hit By Pitch), SH (Sac Hit), SF (Sac Fly), GIDP (Grounded into Double Play), HO (Hold), HRA (HR Against), CG (Complete Game), SHO (Shutout), NH (No-Hitter), PG (Perfect Game).

Note: Flex Relievers (FR) use the maximal point values across each relieving position.

Note: IBB (intentional walk) is not a BB (walk) and as such there is no double counting.

Note: SPs only receive SP points for an appearance if they started that game in real-life (otherwise they receive none).  On the other hand, RP only receive RP points for an appearance if they didn't start that game in real-life (otherwise they receive none).  In short, make sure that your SP are starting in real-life and that your RP are relieving in real-life.

A league's commissioner may choose to use custom scoring - but any league that chooses custom scoring will not be listed in the site-wide Attendance Contest to determine the best GDR teams and leagues.

Fantasy Point (FP) scores then have a series of bonus modifiers added to them, explained later, to capture strategy elements, such as: batting order, lefty-righty match-ups, park effects, pitch-around, and pitcher fatigue.

Hitters

Each one of the 9 field positions (including DH) must have a unique player designated.  You may, however (and it is highly recommended) that for each position you set a backup player as well --- a player that is eligible to play that position but is not in the starting line-up.  In the event your starting fielder fails to play in 6 games in a given week (3 for "short" games that span 4 or fewer days like in twice-a-week leagues, during the All-Star week, or any other short weeks) you will score that position's backup's points for each of the games missed.  This way if a starting player takes a day off in MLB you don't get penalized!

A player may be assigned as a backup at multiple positions.  As such if multiple players fail to play a full 6 (or 3) MLB games in a week and a particular backup is eligible to play each position then his games will count toward those missing starters' games. The backup will score his average FP/G that week times the number of games needed to reach 6 (or 3) at that position, but is limited to contributing the number of games that he actually plays that week.

As you can see, there is real value in players that can backup multiple positions.  Finally the journeyman IF is worth something!

There are no limits on outfielder positions.  Any qualified outfielder can play any OF position.  In addition, any player can play in the DH spot.

Starting Pitchers

One Game/Week Leagues

With respect to starting pitching (SP), you have the option of setting either a 4-man or a 5-man pitching rotation as well as designating a fill-in spot starter (SPS) per week.  If one of your starters goes down and misses a start in a given week, your spot starter's game will count in place of the missed start.  The spot starter will score their average FP over the GDR game period. Spot Starters can only replace one game as replacing more would force a team to take a rotation fatigue penalty without choosing to do so.

Two Game/Week Leagues

In these leagues - only 3 starters per game are counted. Since over a three or four day period - a pitcher is not likely to start more than once - "Avg" as described below is implicitly used. The rotation + Spot starter is essentially treated as a depth chart. Your topped-ranked starters will be used towards scoring. For example, if your SP1, SP2, SP4 and SP5 all pitch then the scores of your SP1, SP2 and SP4 are used.

Bullpen

In addition to the starters, you also need to set a middle reliever (MR), set-up man (SU), closer (CL), and one more flex reliever (FR).  If your MR, SU, and Cls fail to appear in 6 games between them in a given week (3 G in twice-a-week leagues), the missing number of games will be made up for at the flex reliever position. This pitcher, when counted, scores as if he is at any of the three relief positions (ie 10 FP/SV, 10 FP/Ho, - 5 FP BS). The flex-reliever will score their average points-per-game that week times the number of missing games up to a maximum equal to the number of games played by the flex reliever during the GDR game period in question.

Strategy

The Rotation

One Game/Week Leagues

With respect to starting pitching (SP), you have the option of setting either a 4-man or a 5-man pitching rotation as well as designating a fill-in spot starter (SPS) per week.  If one of your starters goes down and misses a start in a given week, your spot starter's game will count in place of the missed start. You can only replace one missed start per week and can only accumulate a maximum of 5 pitching starts per week.

For each of your starters (SP) you will be able to specify which of their starts you want to count for that week. There are five settings:

  1. First: This counts the points from the pitcher's first start of the week.
  2. Last: This counts the points from the pitcher's last start of the week.  If he does not have two starts in a week it will count his first start.
  3. Average: This counts the FP average of a pitcher's starts in a given week.
  4. Both: This counts the FP for both games pitched by a particular SP. Only one pitcher may be set to this in a given week and it means you are using a 4-man rotation that week (explained later)
  5. None: If you set one SP to "Both", you must set one SP to "None".

Most weeks a SP will have just one start. This makes First, Second, and Average identical settings that week. If a player does have two scheduled starts and you use one of the first three settings and then one of the starts is missed you are not penalized at all.

Over the year you may use a 4-man rotation for a given week by setting one pitcher to use "both" of his starts in a week and another to use "none".  The problem with this, however, is that your SPs will fatigue and lose effectiveness the more you do it during the season.  Each time that use employ a 4-man rotation in a week (i.e. have one pitcher use both of his starts in a given week) the overall FP production for your entire starting rotation is reduced by 2% for all subsequent weeks.  For example, if you employ a 4-man rotation 5 times before the All-Star break, all starting pitcher FPs from that point on are reduced 10% each week.

If a pitcher that is set to "both" and misses a start, the system will make use of the spot starter (SPS) and the week will not be considered under a 4-man rotation.

Matchup Bonus

If your league enables the SP Matchup Bonus - extra points will be awarded when your SP out-duels you opponent's SP in the same slot. An SP1 victory is worth an extra 10 FP, SP2 worth 8 FP, SP3 worth 6 FP, SP4 worth 4 FP, and SP5 worth 2 FP (this stops with SP3 in twice-a-week leagues). Starters set to "Both" and who pitch both games will be compared at the position they are ranked in AND at in the slot with the pitcher set to "None". Spot starters are counted in this comparison wherever they ultimately contribute. A pitcher must play and score more than zero FP to qualify for the bonus.

L/R Matchups

One also has to consider the "handedness" of all the pitchers you have playing in a given week.  For each lefty pitcher you have facing a lefty hitter, the opposing hitter will lose 8% of his FPs that week.  If you have 5 of your 8 pitchers in a week left-handed, each left-handed hitter on the opposing team will lose 40% of his FPs due to those match-ups.  On the other hand, however, your remaining 3 right-handed pitchers will provide opposing left-handed hitters a 9% bonus.  This results in each opposing lefty hitter that week losing 31% of his FP that week due to facing a lefty loaded pitching rotation and bullpen. The effect on a given hitter's FPs by each pitcher he faces in a week is shown by the table below.  Note that switch hitters are not affected by left or right-handed pitchers at all.

FP Bonus vs LHP vs RHP
L-hitter

-8%

+3%

R-hitter

+4%

-2%

S-hitter

0%

0%


 Note: Flex relievers, if they are used in the game, will also be counted possibly bringing the total number of pitchers up to 9.

Pitch Around

In addition to setting righty-lefty match-ups with your pitching staff, you can also make a decision at the beginning of a week how you wish to pitch the opposition's top hitter.  You can elect, at your discretion, to "pitch-around" one hitter on the opposing team in a given week.  If you choose to do so, all stats accumulated by that hitter are reduced by 20%.  Be careful, however, as the hitter following the hitter that you have elected to pitch around will subsequently receive a 25% bonus!

These factors are applied to negative FP values as well. This can be set via the Strategy page in the Clubhouse section.

Batting Order

One of the most significant in-game strategy elements in gamedayritual is the ability to set a batting order to get the most value out of the individual production types of your hitters.  Depending on how a hitter produces FPs you may want to put him in the leadoff spot, at cleanup or maybe the bottom of the line-up.

Throughout the week bonuses (BO+) are calculated based on the efficiency that a given player produces FPs for a given batter order spot.  Batting orders are set at the beginning of the week when rosters are set.  Below is an explanation of the bonus factors applied to each batting order position for each type of statistic accumulated.

Spot

R

H

BB

SB

CS

2B

3B

HR

RBI

SH,SF

GIDP

SO

1

.25

.25

.25

.25

-.25

 

.25

 

 

 

 

-0.25

2

.25

.25

.125

 

 

.125

 

 

 

 

-.25

 

3

.125

.125

.25

 

 

.25

 

.125

.125

1.0

-.25

-.25

4

 

.125

.125

 

 

.25

 

.375

.25

 

-.25

-.125

5

 

.125

 

 

 

.25

 

.25

.25

 

 

 

6

 

 

 

.125

-.125

.25

 

 

.25

 

 

 

7

 

.125

 

.125

-.125

.25

.25

 

 

1.0

 

 

8

 

.25

 

.125

-.125

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9

 

 

.25

.25

-.25

 

 

 

 

1.0

 

 

For example, a leadoff hitter will receive 25% bonuses in FPs for every R, H, and BB he accumulates.  In addition, he will get a 25% bonus in FPs for every 3B and SB he gets.  On the flip side, he will lose 25% in FPs for every CS and SO.  Basically you want your leadoff hitter to be a speedster that makes contact and gets on base!

Stadium Effects

Each game also sbujected to the stadium effects of the home teams. Please see the Build Your Stadium section for a detailed explanation.

Corrections

Statistics that appear during the course of a weekly match-up are unofficial.  Statistics, scores and results become official once the scores for the next game are computed (ie only outcomes and stats from the most recently scored games may be challenged and possibly overturned). If you would like to report an error in scoring please contact support@gamedayritual.com and include the following so we may investigate further:

  1. The name of the team in question;
  2. Your league ID# or name;
  3. The player(s) and statistic(s) in question;
  4. Any reference point (box score, recap, news story, etc.) that might help in resolving the issue.

Other Aspects

Schedule

Each weekly head-to-head match-up is based on MLB games started between 12:00AM Monday and 11:59 PM Sunday, local time.  Twice-a-week leagues have games from 12:00AM Monday - 11:59PM Thu, and then from 12:00AM Friday - 11:59PM Sunday, local time. (Exceptions include week 1 and all-star week games. See the schedule page in-game for dates) An MLB game that is postponed or suspended counts towards the week in which is eventually completed.

All transactions for a given week must be completed by the hour prior to the first MLB game played that GDR game.  Transactions made after this time will be active for the following GDR game.  This includes all roster and line-up changes, waiver claims, strategy adjustments, etc.  If a trade is pending review when this weekly deadline passes, should it be permitted the players involved will be active for their new teams the following week.

For the first week of the season only the Sunday game will be included in the following week's match-up.  As a result the first week will be an extended eight-day week.

If your league's FAB does not complete before 11:59 p.m. ET on the day before the first MLB game then the first week of your schedule will start in Week 2 (i.e. no match-ups will be played in Week 1). You will not start a gamedayritual Matchup until you complete your FAB by midnight the day before the next deadline.

If you are playing in a non-playoff format league your schedule consists of a 26 (or approximately 50*) week long head-to-head match-ups that count towards your league's final standings.

If you are playing in a full-season playoff format league your schedule consist of a 24 (or about 47*) week long "regular-season" that counts towards your league's regular season standings.  The last two weeks of the regular MLB season are reserved for two playoff rounds.

Playoffs are week long games starting in week 25, regardless of the once or twice-a-week format. Twice-a-week leagues will be scored like once-a-week leagues in the Playoffs, and will use a full SP rotation.

*If you are playing in a 2 games per week format, then the week of the MLB all-star game will not have a Mon-Thu game and the typical Fri-Sun game will be extended that week to be a Thu-Sun game. Also, the first week of the MLB season may map to a 1-game GDR week. See the schedule page in-game for details.

In both playoff and non-playoff formats all 26 weeks are used to calculate Percent of Attendance Capacity and Average Percent of Attendance Capacity.

In divisional format leagues, the division winners and wildcards (up to four teams total) make the playoffs.  The higher ranked team always gets home-field advantage in each round of the playoffs.

Ties in the standings are decided using the following tie breakers:

Virtual Series

If your league enables the Virtual Series feature - each GDR game will be mapped to a week's worth of games (6/7 for 1G/Wk, or 3/4 for 2G/Wk leagues) based on the margin of victory in FP. You will finish the season with a 162 game W-L record. More weight is given to interdivisional series where possible.

 

1G/Wk - 7 G Series

1G/Wk - 6 G Series

2G/Wk - 4 G Series

1G/Wk - 3 G Series

Win by %

W-L

Win by %

W-L

Win by %

W-L

Win by %

W-L

> 100%

7-0

> 100%

6-0

> 50%

4-0

> 50%

3-0

50 - 100%

6-1

50 - 100%

5-1

10 - 50%

3-1

0-50%

2-1

15 - 50%

5-2

10 - 50%

4-2

0 - 10%

2-2

 

 

0 - 15%

4-3

0 - 10%

3-3

 

 

 

 

Each higher plateau kicks-in with equality. So for example in a 1 game-a-week league, playing a 7 game searies - you would earn a 5-2 record if you win by exactly 15%.

Finances

You are going to have to keep a keen eye on your finances throughout the season to make sure that that you have the flexibility to make the acquisitions and deals necessary to keep your team competitive.

The system will not allow you to have a roster that will result you in paying over $110M in salary by the end of the season.  You may, however, have a team with a gross annual salary of over $110M at a given time during the season if you were running under budget at the beginning of the season.  You can track this key aspect of your team through the Finances tab of the Front Office section.

Note that players on both your 25-man and 40-rosters count towards your budget.  Players that are waived and not claimed by other team during the waiver period are paid 50% of their remaining salary for the duration of their contract even if they end up playing for another team.

While not ideal, it is possible to relieve your team of an ill advised and potentially crushingly large player contract.  Unlike the major leagues, you can waive a player and if not claimed by another team, you are only responsible for 50% of the remainder of his contract.  This will often give teams enough breathing room financially to fill their needs with other players via free agent acquisition or trades.  Another way is to trade the player, along with his contract, to another team.  Often teams won't accept players with large contracts but you can offer to pay a portion of the remaining contract by adding cash to the trade.  These methods can prevent teams from getting "stuck" with a large, unproductive and paralyzing contract.

Note: Twice-a-week leagues play two games from Mon-Thurs and from Fri-Sun but salaries in these leagues are still evaluated weekly.

Attendance

Attendance is an assessment of how good your gamedayritual team really is against all teams on the site.  While it is impressive and rewarding to have a team at the top of the standings, attendance is a definitive measure of the strength of your team considering the strength of the rest of your league.

Specifically, the "Percent of Attendance Capacity" measurement on the Attendance tab tells you how strong your team is considering the strength of your competition.  If you play in a highly competitive league where many of your opponents have well-managed, productive teams, and you are at the top of the league, you will have a high Percent of Capacity.  On the other hand, if you are running away from you league simply because the competition is weak, your Percent of Capacity will be high, but not amongst the best in gamedayritual.

The team with the most fantasy points ("FP") relative to the Strength Rating of the league in which it is competing by the end of the season will be the Attendance Champion.  This ratio will be tracked throughout the season on a scale of 0% to 100% ("Percent of Attendance Capacity"), with the highest rated team at the end of the season receiving a 100% ratio.  Additionally, the league with the highest Strength Rating at the end of the season ("Average Percent of Attendance Capacity) will be the League Attendance Champion.

There are no prizes awarded to the Attendance Champions, or any other participants, users or members either of a cash or non-cash nature.  Participation in MLB.com gamedayritual is purely for entertainment purposes.

In the event of a tie for the Attendance Championship or League Attendance Championship, tiebreakers will be used in the following order:

  1. Total FPs (with all Bonuses except those produced by Stadium Parameters);
  2. Lower total salary expenditures over the season;
  3. Lowest teamID.
  4. A timed baseball trivia quiz will be administered, testing the tied Participants' knowledge of Major League Baseball, until the tie is broken.

The calculation used to determine FPs for the purpose of Percent of Attendance Capacity and league Strength Rating is not inclusive of Bonuses associated with stadium design.

Percent of Attendance Capacity is calculated by taking the square of your team's accumulated FPs (with all Bonuses except those produced by Stadium Parameters) and dividing it by the Strength Rating of your league.  This ratio is then applied to a scale of 0% to 100%.

Average Percent of Attendance Capacity is the average of the Percent of Attendance Capacity of all teams in a league

The Strength Rating of a league is calculated by taking the average weekly FPs (with all Bonuses except those produced by Stadium Parameters) of all other teams in the league and dividing it by the cube of the average weekly FPs (with all Bonuses except those produced by Stadium Parameters) of all teams in gamedayritual competing in the same league size.

Other Aspects of the Franchise
Through the Franchise section you are also able to peruse how your team has done in previous seasons.  You'll be able to see your previous seasons' records, an almanac of your previous seasons' rosters as well as a record of final standings.  If you won a championship you'll be able to see the inscribed trophy from your winning season!

In addition, you are able to set you team's color scheme, upload a logo, change the club name, etc.


Policy

Fair Play

Even though fantasy games are meant to be a competitive experience for all involved, it is important to us that our users not lose sight of the rules of fair play and good sportsmanship.

To this end, each team owner (private or public) agrees that, by joining the game, they will abide by the following regulations:

All league-related transactions will be executed with the intent of improving the user's team and/or its standing within the league.
No owner will engage in any action that may be deemed to be collusive (two or more owners agreeing to make moves that benefit one team, but not substantively the other).
No owner will make any roster moves (including waiver claims, trade proposals, etc.) whose sole purpose is to hamper the play of other owners.
No owner will take any action whose purpose is to, in any way, interfere with fair play in a league.

While gamedayritual will not remove teams from leagues after they have paid, any failure to follow all of the items listed above may result in elimination from eligibility for the Attendance Title or the ability to register with gamedayritual in the future.

It is the responsibility of team owners to monitor activity within their leagues. If, as an owner, you notice any suspicious or collusive activity in your league, please notify us at once so that we may investigate and take the appropriate action -- if deemed necessary -- against the offending team(s).

New For This Season

There have been several new advancements and a few subtle game logic changes in gamedayritual over last season.  Below is a summary:

Guide Revisions