How to play – Short Season 2020

Contents

The format
Getting set up
Game winners and prizes
Your roster
Fantasy points
Other rules and conditions
Consent to accept and abide by the Rules and Terms of Use
Support

Owing to a combination of last year’s technical issues that need sorting and the unusually short Major League Baseball season as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, in 2020 Fantasy Baseball UK will depart from its normal format and run a short game through Yahoo Sports. The ethos remains for FBUK to be a relatively uncomplicated version of fantasy baseball. We’ll stick to the same points-based league as usual where your team of Major League Baseball players earn you points based on their offence or pitching performance each day of the MLB season.

Unlike some fantasy baseball games, there is no draft system between managers, so an MLB player can appear on multiple fantasy teams. The game follows the MLB regular season, running from roughly the start of April and concluding by the start of October, when the game winners will be decided.

Divisions

With around 70 managers registered for Short Season 2020 they will be split into six divisions of 12-13 teams each. The divisions are based on the region of the UK the manager lives in (as stated on the registration form), although some liberties have been taken with groupings to keep them of similar size and in order to accommodate a few managers who requested to be in a division with their ‘FBUK buddy’ who is in a different region.

At the end of the season there will be a winner of each division and, like in the traditional FBUK game, we’ll also combine the standings to crown an overall champion.

It’s free to enter a team but this year it is limited to one team per manager. This is to enable consistency and fairness given that there are a limited number of spots available per division and the available MLB player pool will be split across the number of fantasy teams in each division.

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Getting set up

Registration

If you registered to enter Short Season 2020 you will be sent an email from FBUK with an invitation link to join the division you have been assigned to. Follow the Yahoo Sports instructions to set your team up in the league. If you already have a Yahoo account you should be able to register with that. If not, you will be asked to create a Yahoo account.

Team name

You can choose any name for your team, within the character limits imposed by Yahoo. FBUK reserves the right to disallow the use of team names which it believes are likely to cause offence to other team managers. Please keep team names clean, respectable and polite!

Manager dashboard

If you are not familiar with Yahoo fantasy sports, take some time to look around your manager dashboard and the various menu items that provide information about the league and the ability to change settings for your team or manager profile.

In particular, the ‘League’ section of the dashboard is where you can see the specific settings for the league that are referred to in the rest of this guide.

There is also a Yahoo Fantasy Sports mobile app (check your device app store), although it might not offer the full functionality of the Yahoo Sports website.

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Game winners and prizes

Overall Champion:

The team manager who has accumulated the highest number of fantasy points in the combined standings of all divisions at the end of the season.

Division Winners:

The team managers who have accumulated the highest number of fantasy points in each of the divisions at the end of the season.

Prizes

In the event that Fantasy Baseball UK is able to offer prizes to certain categories of winners, we’ll let you know about them on the Prizes page. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee prizes every year.

Where we offer prizes, this is usually based on generous sponsorship or donation by a friendly partner organisation. In the rare case that such circumstances change part way through the season, we may need to alter the type or range of prizes offered or, unfortunately, withdraw them completely from the game. We will not be liable to provide any form of compensation for withdrawn prizes.

Prizes will normally be sent out following the end of the season with a system provided for winners to claim their prizes. Unless we specify at the time a deadline by which prizes must be claimed, we reserve the right to remove the availability of unclaimed prizes at the start of the following season.

Tiebreak

In the event of a tie between team managers for a prize-winning position at the end of the season, the winner will be determined by the following, in this order:

  1. Comparing placement of teams in individual stats categories. Respective performances are calculated and a point given to each team for bettering the other. Should one team total more points than the other, that team is declared the winner.
  2. Should the point totals still be equal, the team with the most total runs at season’s end is declared the winner (the object of baseball is to score more runs than the opposition, after all!).
  3. Should the total runs be equal, the team that used the fewest number of players to achieve its points total at season end is declared the winner.
  4. In the extremely unlikely event a tie still exists, one name from the tied managers will be drawn at random by the FBUK admin team to decide who receives the prize.

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Your roster

Draft

Like pretty much every fantasy baseball league (except traditional FBUK!) Yahoo uses an initial online draft for managers to build their rosters. Managers take turns to pick a MLB player and a player can only appear on one fantasy team’s roster within each league. There is no team salary budget or player salary value.

We’ll let managers know the scheduled date, start time and format of the draft as well as the order in which managers will take their turns. Managers can choose to login to the whole draft and manually select a player in each round or, if you can only attend part of the draft, not at all, or you run out of ideas halfway through, the system will auto-draft for you at your turn so your team will still get a starting roster.

If planning some auto-drafting, you can pre-rank the importance of MLB players to you, to give you a better chance of drafting some of the players you want. Or just leave it in the hands of Yahoo’s built-in ranking system that will auto-draft the best available player for the given roster position at that turn.

After the draft, undrafted players remaining (free agents) can then be added or swapped onto rosters.

Waivers

Whenever a player is dropped from a roster, they’ll be temporarily frozen for a period of time. The default time period is two days (check the league settings in the manager dashboard). During this time, any manager can make a claim to add the player, but managers are ranked from highest to lowest priority to determine who wins a waiver claim.

Waiver priority

The initial rank is a reverse of the  league’s draft order so the manager in last draft position is ranked first priority for waivers. When a claim is successful, that manager drops to the bottom of the priority list. You can view your waiver rank standings in the dashboard’s ‘League’ section, in the ‘Waiver’ column.

If no one claims the player, the player joins the free agent pool, which means anyone can add them to their team almost immediately, without competition from other managers.

If a manager adds a free agent and then drops them in the same day, the player remains a free agent.

Trades

Players can be traded between fantasy teams through the season up to the season trade deadline date if one has been set. When a trade is agreed between two managers there will be a period of review by other managers in the league to check it is fair. If a third or more of managers vote to veto the trade it will be voided, otherwise the trade will complete successfully at the end of the review period.

Managers should only vote to veto a trade if it is deemed unfair to the integrity of the game. Veto should not be used for tactical reasons to hamper the play of other managers or simply because a trade looks more beneficial to one team than the other. Please refer to the Fair Play Rules section of this guide.

Can’t Cut List

Yahoo Sports tries to keep the competition balanced and fair by maintaining a Can’t Cut List of players that can’t be dropped from a roster under any circumstances. The purpose of this list is to keep managers from dumping their highest performing players that then become available to other managers and changes the competitive balance of the league. The list is updated and can be viewed in the ‘Players’ section of the manager dashboard menu.

Roster construction

Each team manager is entitled to select a team roster of up to 20 players plus an Injured List (IL):

Starting Line-Up
  • 9 starting position players
    • Catcher (C)
    • First baseman (1B)
    • Second baseman (2B)
    • Third baseman (3B)
    • Shortstop (SS)
    • 3 x Outfielder (OF)
    • Designated Hitter (DH) (Utility)
  • 5 starting pitchers
  • 1 relief pitcher
Bench
  • 5 bench position players, whether hitters or pitchers
Injured List (IL)
  • 2 players
    • If a player is listed on the official MLB Injury Report and placed on the IL by their respective MLB team, they can be carried on your roster’s IL and won’t take up space in your line-up or bench. Once the player leaves the real-world IL, they will either need to be moved to your active roster or dropped.

Eligible Positions

All position players may be selected in any of the positions they have occupied in the current season subject to Yahoo’s eligibility criteria (a minimum number of starts or appearances). Plus, any hitter can be put in the DH (Utility) slot.

Team line-ups

Only players in the starting line-up on game day will score fantasy points for your team. You can move players between your starting line-up and your bench up until the scheduled start time of their respective games each day. 

Transaction deadlines

You can bring new players into your roster by trading a player from another manager, winning a waiver claim or adding a free agent (see descriptions further up the page). Once completed, these transactions will come into effect on your roster once a week on Sunday on that day. Update! It now seems the Yahoo deadline setting for both transactions and lineup changes is the same, so transactions have been set to daily as well.

Season position limits

Each line-up position (batters) has a maximum number of games for which it is eligible to score points over the course of the season. The limit is for the position not a particular individual player. If a position reaches its maximum games played (GP) limit before the season ends, it will no longer score points for your team going forward.

For Short Season 2020 the maximum games played limit is 67 per position (the length in days of the shortened season), i.e. equivalent to one player in the position being eligible to score points on each game day of the season. For the three outfield positions the limit is combined to 201.

If you don’t have a player in a position on a given day, or the player in the position does not play in a MLB game that day, it won’t deduct a game played from the limit.

Your team’s pitching staff is limited to 525 innings pitched (IP) across all starters and relievers over the season, which is Yahoo’s default limit for the shortened season. If it reaches that limit before the season ends, you will no longer score points in the pitching categories going forward.

All managers are able to see the position limits in terms of games played (offence) and innings pitched in the league settings, plus at the bottom of the roster page it indicates how much of each limit has been used so far.

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Fantasy Points

You score fantasy points for every player in your starting line-up by the time each player’s game starts that day. Points are weighted so that each fantasy points category is of roughly equal value.

Note: Pitchers score fantasy points only for pitching stats, not for offence!

Offensive stats

Category Points
Home Run (HR) 5
Hit / Single (1B) 1
Extra Base Hit (EB) 2 for a double (2B)
3 for a triple (3B)
Runs (R) 2
Run Batted In (RBI) 3
Stolen Base (SB) 4
Walk (BB)
(excluding Hit By Pitch, etc)
1

Pitching Stats

Category Points
Win (W) 20
Relief Win (RW) 10*
Strike Out (K) 2
Save (SV) 10
Inning Pitched (IP) 1 for every inning pitched

*As Yahoo awards both a win and a relief win to relievers (30pts), the relief win category has been removed in Short Season 2020. Relievers who pick up the win will be awarded 20pts.

Player statistics

Fantasy Baseball UK uses Yahoo Sports as its MLB statistics source. Fantasy points are awarded on the basis of those stats and stats, points and standings will be updated by the Yahoo platform. If an error in the stats published by the stats source results in the incorrect allocation of points, any adjustments to player points and standings are made entirely at the discretion of Fantasy Baseball UK and Yahoo Sports.

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Other rules and conditions

Fair play rules

Fantasy Baseball UK adopts the Yahoo requirement that all managers agree to the following basic rules to keep things fair:

  • Don’t engage in any collusive action with other managers
  • Don’t drop or dump players from your team with malicious intent
  • Don’t take any action where its purpose would hinder fair play in the league
  • Don’t make roster moves that will intentionally hamper the play of other managers

Website access and maintenance

When using the Yahoo Sports fantasy baseball platform, Fantasy Baseball UK has no control over, and is not liable for, the availability of the website for trades and roster line-up changes. In the event that the service is unavailable at any time, we regret that we are unable to make changes to team rosters retrospectively or award ‘missed’ fantasy points caused by the unavailability.

If an error in the player statistics published by the MLB stats source results in the incorrect allocation of points, any adjustments to player points and standings are made entirely at the discretion of Fantasy Baseball UK and Yahoo Sports.

Changes to the game format

We may change the exact format of the game from season to season, with the aim of bringing you the best version of the game we are able to provide at the time. Normally, we’ll try to consult with team managers during the offseason to give them a chance of input.

Declared Interest

People employed by an official sponsor or advertising partner of the game, or in any way connected with the running of the Fantasy Baseball UK game or website, are allowed to participate fully in the game, but must declare their interest to the game organisers.

Participants with a declared interest must decline any prizes for which they become eligible. In the event that prizes are declined on that basis, we may choose to award the prize to the next highest scoring player without a declared interest, in the competition category that the prize related to.

These declared interest rules do not apply to forum moderators who have no other role in the running of the game.

Reiteration of key rules

As stated earlier on this page:

  • We reserve the right to disallow the use of team names which we believe are likely to cause offence to other users of the website.
  • Any manager found to have used separate accounts to get more than the permissible number of free teams will not be eligible to receive any prizes and may be ejected from the game!

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The full content on this page forms the Rules of the Game, in addition to the general Terms of Use of the website. By using this website and choosing to participate in the game, you consent to accept and abide by the Rules and Terms of Use. In the event that a team manager does not abide by the Rules or comply with the Terms of Use, Fantasy Baseball UK reserves the right to temporarily or permanently exclude that individual from the game or restrict their access to elements of the game (including prize eligibility) and their website account.

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Support

If you need help playing the game, encounter a problem or have a question that we haven’t answered above, there are various things you can do:

  • Consult the Yahoo Fantasy Baseball Help pages
  • We may have provided answers to common questions in the Help section
  • A fellow team manager might be able to help with your question – you can chat with other managers in the league message board of your Yahoo manager dashboard or the FBUK Forum, which you can access from the Manager Options menu when logged in (the Forum may be unavailable during the 2020 season)
  • Send us an email through the Contact Us page

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