Highly Custom Leagues Omnibus

You find yourself reading words about the innovative Highly Custom Leagues series. Specifically, this is an omnibus compiling some very basic details of all such leagues in one place. If you’re looking for unusual variations on classic fantasy baseball to occupy your mind, this is the place to find them.

Each section heading is a link. This post will be updated as new leagues are designed. I will also endeavor to note compatible modules.

1. 2×2 Roto

Excerpt: This is intended to be shallow, very active streaming format pitting quantity against quality. For example, the proposed pitching categories are Innings Pitched and K%-BB%. Streaming multiple starters per day will pile up IP at the expense of K%-BB%. Focusing purely on quality might result in punting the IP category. And in a league with only four categories, you cannot hope to win by punting. Finding the right balance will be a challenge!

Compatible Modules: Split Auction, Roto-to-Head, Category Wars, Public Trade Negotiations, Owners and Managers, Sacrifices

2. Split Auction

Excerpt: This module divides hitters and pitchers into separate auction pools. These auctions can be run concurrently, consecutively, or on different days. I recommend the challenge of concurrent auctions – it’s a lot of fun!

Afterwards, you have the option to combine the leagues or leave them separate.

Compatible Modules: 2×2 Roto, Roto-to-Head, Category Wars, Public Trade Negotiations, If Only, Owners and Manager, Sacrifices

3. Roto-To-Head

Excerpt: This will become a standard format before too long. Ottoneu supports it. This league uses a traditional roto regular season with a H2H style postseason. Presently, if not using ottoneu, you’ll need to jump through some hoops on Fantrax to play.

Compatible Modules: 2×2 Roto, Split Auction, Rotating Divisions, Category Wars, Public Trade Negotiations, If Only, Owners and Managers, Sacrifices

4. Rotating Divisions

Excerpt: While technically playable as a redraft league, this is at it’s most fun as a keeper format. Instead of using a traditional AL or NL Only system, Rotating Divisions includes, depending on your preference, either four or five divisions. This lets you experience some of the difficulties of an Only league but with a deeper player pool. And if you’re using keepers, you know they’ll vanish back into the player pool every few years. Fantrax offers native support for this variation on the classic.

Compatible Modules: WAR Wars, Category Wars, Public Trade Negotiations, Owners and Managers, Roto-to-Head

5. WAR Wars

Excerpt: So you’re a FanGraphs truther with heart full of WAR. Then this league is for you. Using WAR as the fantasy category can be challenging since no fantasy sites offer it. Fortunately, I’ve beta tested this and have plenty of advice on avoiding any league-breaking pitfalls.

Compatible Modules: Public Trade Negotiations, Rotating Divisions, If Only

6. Category Wars

Excerpt: This module turns every category into an opportunity to win cash. It’s best to just follow the link and squint at the sample table of payouts.

Compatible Modules: 2×2 Roto, Split Auction, Roto-To-Head, Rotating Divisions, Public Trade Negotiations, If Only, Owners and Managers, Sacrifices

7. Public Trade Negotiations

Excerpt: Annoyed by your rivals strong-arming weaker opponents into handing over their best players for a pittance? PTN gives you the opportunity to outbid your rivals after a trade is consummated – typically within 24-hours of the original trade. Either owner can accept a new offer so long as it involves at least one of the players in the original deal.

I played an 18-team league with this module last year. It works. I even sniped a cheap Manny Machado from somebody else.

Compatible Modules: Any trading league

8. If Only

Excerpt: This is a mixed league where you decide which league you’re playing with your first pick. Take Mike Trout? Then you may only draft AL players. Snag Mookie Betts? Then you’re locked into drafting from the NL. Waiver moves must also adhere to your AL or NL selection.

The wrinkle is with trades. You may acquire players from the opposite league via a trade. You may also retain your players if they’re dealt to a new league in a real world trade.

Compatible Modules: Public Trade Negotiations, Sacrifices, Category Wars, Roto-to-Head, Split Auctions, WAR Wars

9. Elimination

Excerpt: While there are a number of ways to draw this up, it works best as a 20+ team points league. Each week, the worst scorer is eliminated. Only one will be left standing in the end.

This is also referred to as a vampire league if you allow surviving teams to draft from the survivors. I beta tested this league last year, and it’s a TON of fun. And a bit of work for the commish. As with anything highly customized, use Fantrax.

Compatible Modules: Owners and Managers, Sacrifices

10. Home Team

Excerpt: This is a great way to introduce a small child or homunculus to fantasy baseball. And your favorite franchise! This five-for-fewer-team format uses just one MLB club with a very shallow roster. Grab a starter, reliever, infielder, and outfielder.

Compatible Modules: Roto-to-Head, WAR wars, Public Trade Negotiations

11. Owners and Managers

Excerpt: Real teams sometimes have to contend with the battle of wits between owner and manager (both general and field). This module attempts to simulate this experience with “owners” paying actual dollars to “managers” to run their teams for them. The owners can decide to be hands on, laissez-faire, or even fire their manager if it’s not working out.

Compatible Modules: Roto-to-Head, Rotating Divisions, Public Trade Negotiations, Elimination, Sacrifices, Category Wars, Split Auction

12. Battery

Excerpt: In baseball, the battery refers to pitchers and catchers. So this is a league that only uses pitchers and catchers. Good luck finding stolen bases. Auctions are recommended as they’re bound to be particularly vicious.

Compatible Modules: Sacrifices

13. Sacrifices

Excerpt: Two versions of this mode are outlined in the accompanying post. The premise is simple – the baseball gods are hangry and you must occasionally sacrifice a player to them. An ultra-hardcore mode would include removing sacrificed players from the player pool.

Compatible Modules: All but WAR wars and Home Team (too shallow)

You can follow me on twitter @BaseballATeam

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4 years ago