A week ago, I participated in a new Tout Wars league which is called the Head-to-Head league, but it has a roto component. It was interesting to prepare for a highly competitive league with no previous similar leagues to reference. With the new format, first I had to decide how I would approach the league and second how my opponents would approach it, and how to find some advantages. Today, I will go over the rules and then ask you, our readers, about how you would approach the league. Later, I will go over my approach.
Here are the simplified rules with the full set being available at the Tout Wars website.
• 12 team mixed league with 23-man rosters, 6-man bench, and unlimited DL slots
• Weekly matchups with weekly lineup changes
• Pitching categories: W+QS, K/9, WHIP, ERA, Net Saves
• 9 pitchers with no RP or SP designation
• Hitting categories: OBP, RBI, Runs, HR, Net Steals
• 14 hitters: 2 C, 1 1B, 1 2B, 1 SS, 1 3B, 5 OF, 1 MI, 1 CI, 1 UT
• In each of the 22 weekly scoring periods, six wins are handed out. Two wins for winning three or more pitching categories. Two wins for winning three or more hitting categories. Two wins for the most wins in all 10 categories. If there is a tie, the wins are split. Officailly, wins and losses are handed out so each team has a record like 30-18. In my opinion, it is easier to just concentrate on the wins.
• Also for scoring, there are three roto contests: first half, second half and full season. The first-place team overall in each roto season will get 11 Wins with the second-place team getting 10 Wins and so on down to zero wins for last place. For the half seasons, the minimum innings pitched is 475; 950 minimum for the whole season. If these levels aren’t reached, the owners finish last in each of ERA, WHIP and K/9.
• In total, there are 22 matchup periods (long weeks for the season’s start, All-Star game, and end of the season) generating a possible 132 wins (6 * 22 or 80 percent) and the roto aspect generating 33 wins (20 percent).
You get all that? To say the rules are complex is an understatement. Brent Hershey at BaseballHQ had this quote about the rules.
Confused yet? You wouldn’t be the only one—several of us participants [including myself] debated the specifics of the scoring on Saturday afternoon of the weekend, nearly 24 hours after we selected our teams.
So, with the above rules, how would you approach the draft and how do you think your opponents would? Early next week, I will give you my opponents and my approach and it I think it was the right approach.
Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won three FSWA Awards including on for his MASH series. In his first two seasons in Tout Wars, he's won the H2H league and mixed auction league. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.