Last updated on 20 April 2023
Getting set up
Game winners and prizes
Yahoo: Draft and player transactions
Fantrax: Budget and player transactions
League limits and refunds
Other rules and conditions
In 2023, Fantasy Baseball UK will run through a combination of Yahoo Sports and Fantrax. 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 and fantasy teams accumulate points through the season.
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.
FBUK League (standard game)
- Run through Yahoo Sports, the official fantasy platform of Major League Baseball
- Uses an initial draft for managers to build their rosters and after that you can add/drop players from/to the free agent pool or trade with another fantasy team
- Manage your roster and game day line-ups through the season
- FREE to play
With around 120 managers registered for 2023 they will be split into several divisions. 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 those managers who requested to be in a division with their ‘FBUK buddy’.
At the end of the season there will be a winner of each division and we’ll also combine the standings to crown an overall champion.
FBUK LTD (limited trade game)
With no bench in this game, you have no substitutes and a maximum number of player transactions (unlike the standard game, which allows unlimited trades and daily bench swaps). With limited flexibility, your roster decisions are even more important, but it is also great for those fantasy players who don’t want to make constant changes to their line-up.
- Run through Yahoo Sports
- Uses an initial draft for managers to build their rosters
- After the initial draft is complete, a maximum of 18 free agent acquisitions are allowed until the end of the season
- Managers can also make a trade with another fantasy team up to three times
- FREE to play
Like the standard game, fantasy teams will be grouped into divisions and we’ll combine the standings to crown an overall champion of FBUK LTD.
FBUK Classic (salary cap game)
An updated take on the original FBUK format that uses a salary cap system in which managers build a roster within a set budget limit to spend on player salaries.
- This updated version is run through the third-party Fantrax platform
- Each MLB player is assigned a salary value based on a combination of previous and projected performance and, rather than a draft, managers build their roster within a team salary budget cap
- Within the league, the same MLB player could be held by multiple different fantasy teams/managers
- Unlike the Yahoo draft leagues, players are not traded between fantasy teams; you add or drop players between your roster and the entire available player pool
- As the season progresses, player salary values are regularly recalculated up or down based on performance so as you drop and add players through the season you will need to be mindful of your overall team budget cap
- There is an entry fee per team (all revenue goes towards covering the costs of using the Fantrax platform plus the general running of the FBUK game)
Again, fantasy teams will be grouped into divisions and we’ll combine the standings to crown the overall FBUK Classic champion.
FBUK $5m Game (salary cap game)
Another return from the original FBUK format. Also run through Fantrax, it uses the same salary cap system as FBUK Classic but with a low team salary budget of $5m.
FBUK League / FBUK LTD
The Yahoo draft leagues are limited to one team per manager in each format. As in some formats there are a limited number of spots available per division, this enables as many individuals as possible a chance to take part.
In Yahoo, a manager can invite someone else to co-manage their fantasy team with them. In FBUK, the co-manager must not be someone who is already managing or co-managing a team in FBUK. This is to prevent co-managing allowing an individual to skirt around the free team limit or to be in control of more than one team within a division (which might impact the competitive balance of the division as the manager could effectively acquire and trade players between their own teams).
Any manager found to have used separate accounts, registrations or email addresses, or through co-managing, to get more than the permissible number of free teams will not be eligible to receive any game awards or prizes and may be ejected from the game!
FBUK Classic / $5m Game
In the salary cap format, managers may be able to purchase more than one team (details will be provided during registration). As the same MLB player can be held by multiple different fantasy teams/managers and there is no trading between teams, there is not the possibility that would exist in the Yahoo draft leagues of a manager trading between their own teams to gain an unfair advantage. Depending on the total number of teams involved, if a manager buys more than one team in the salary cap league, we will aim to put each one into a different division.
Getting set up
If you registered to enter this season’s league you will be sent an email from FBUK with an invitation link to join the division you have been assigned to. Depending which league you have entered, follow the Yahoo Sports / Fantrax instructions to set your team up in the league. If you already have a Yahoo / Fantrax account you should be able to register with that. If not, you will be asked to create a new account.
You can choose any name for your team, within the character limits set by the platform. 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!
If you are not familiar with Yahoo or Fantrax 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 Yahoo, 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.
Both Yahoo and Fantrax fantasy sports offer free mobile apps to allow you to manage your team on the go (check your device app store).
Game winners and prizes
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.
The team managers who have accumulated the highest number of fantasy points in each of the divisions at the end of the season.
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 due to the costs involved and whether there are any prize sponsors/donors.
Where we offer prizes, in the rare case that 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. For example, this might be due to a change in availability from suppliers or prize sponsors/donors. Although we will try to find a suitable replacement, we will not be liable to provide any form of compensation for altered or withdrawn prizes.
Depending on the nature of prizes on offer, if the same manager wins multiple prizes in a season (i.e. wins more than one league), we may choose to combine prizes for that person. For example, if the prizes are trophies of some kind, we might offer one trophy noting that the manager won two or more leagues. Any savings made via this route will be put towards the other runnings costs of the game.
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.
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:
- 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.
- 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!).
- 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.
- 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.
Each team manager is entitled to select a team roster of up to 21 players plus an Injured List (IL):
- 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
- 2 relief pitchers
- 5 bench spots, whether hitters or pitchers (Limited Trade Game: there is no bench)
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 may remain on your fantasy IL but won’t be eligible to contribute fantasy points to your team until you move them back to your roster. Returning them to your roster will require dropping another player if your roster is already full.
All position players may be selected in any of the positions they have occupied in the current season subject to Yahoo/Fantrax eligibility criteria (a minimum number of starts or appearances). Plus, any hitter can be put in the DH (Utility) slot.
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 (if it is within one minute of the scheduled game time, the player might already be locked).
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.
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 a total number of innings pitched (IP) across all starters and relievers over the season. If it reaches that limit before the season ends, you will no longer score points in the pitching categories going forward.
In a normal full-length regular season, the limits are 162 GP and 1400 IP. All managers are able to see the position limits in terms of games played (offence) and innings pitched in the league settings. Plus, in Yahoo at the bottom of the roster page it indicates how much of each limit has been used so far; in Fantrax that is indicated on the ‘Min/Max’ tab of your Team Roster area.
Note: There is a loophole in the way Yahoo and Fantrax treat the innings pitched (IP) limit. If a fantasy team starts the day under the limit but its active pitchers for that day’s games take it over the limit, points for all of those innings will be counted. However, once the limit has been exceeded, no more pitching points will be counted on future days.
Yahoo: Draft and player transactions
This section is relevant to the FBUK League (standard game) and FBUK LTD (limited trade game) run through Yahoo Sports.
Yahoo uses an initial online draft for managers to build their rosters. Managers take turns to pick an 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.
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.
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.
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.
In Yahoo, each ‘division’ has to be set up as a separate league and each must contain a team managed by the league commissioner (FBUK administrator). In practicality, the FBUK administrator is likely to be the same person acting as commissioner across multiple divisions/leagues and they don’t wish to actively manage all of those commissioner teams. There are a few different workarounds that could be employed, and none are perfect, but the current system is that in the majority of divisions the commissioner’s team will be set up as a non-contending placeholder team, like so:
- The placeholder team will aim to draft low-ranked MLB players or even players that didn’t get included on a major league roster (if possible), the intention being to not deprive the other teams of viable players from the pool that would otherwise sit on a placeholder team or become the target of trade requests
- Sometimes decent up-and-coming players accidentally make it on to these placeholder rosters. This will be monitored as best we can and those players dropped to the waiver wire as soon as possible.
- In the unlikely event of a trade request being made to the placeholder team the request will be routinely declined (no offence!) and the player(s) in question dropped from the placeholder team to the waiver wire. This is to avoid the contentious issue of the deliberately non-contending placeholder team getting involved in trades with other teams. Instead, the player(s) of interest go to the waiver wire so they become available to all teams.
In a division where the commissioner’s team is an active and contending team (or at least trying to contend!) the above process does not apply and they may participate in trades.
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 on that day.
(Limited Trade Game: for the limits on transactions please see the Format section further up the page)
Fantrax: Budget and player transactions
This section is relevant to the FBUK Classic and $5m Game salary cap leagues run through Fantrax.
Building your roster within the budget
Rather than a draft, managers build their roster within a team salary budget cap, which is the same for each team. In FBUK Classic, we’ll use the budget figure of $12m like the original FBUK game did. This is reduced to $5m in the $5m Game. At the start of the season, each MLB player is assigned a salary value by Fantrax based on a combination of previous and projected performance as well as a ratio appropriate to the team salary cap figure. Once the league opens, managers will have until the first game day of the season to build their initial rosters by selecting players from the pool of free agents.
Unlike draft leagues, here the same MLB player could be held by multiple different fantasy teams/managers in the league so there is no race to claim sole ownership of a player before another team does.
Injured List (IL)
Where the roster allows for an injured list, the salary of a player currently on your IL will not count towards your team’s budget cap. However, the salary will count when the player is moved back to your roster. See Your roster above for more information about the IL.
As the same MLB player can be held by multiple different fantasy teams/managers in the league, players are not traded between teams and there is no waiver wire controlling the availability of a player when one team drops them. In the salary cap league, ‘trading’ really refers to when managers drop and add players directly between their team roster and the free agent pool (essentially, all the other available players not already on their roster).
Once the regular season starts, player salary values are given a regular recalculation up or down based on performance. Fantrax does this on a daily basis.
Revaluation won’t affect a player’s salary if they are already on your roster. Note: in Fantrax, while this means that your rostered players’ salaries will not increase and take you over budget, it also means any reduction in their salaries will not be reflected either (i.e. it won’t free up budget space). This is an important difference to note compared to the original FBUK game.
If you add a player to your roster it will be based on their current salary value at the time that you set up the trade. Similarly, if you drop a player then pick them up again later in the season, you pay their current salary value, not what it used to be when they were first on your roster.
As you drop and add players through the season you will need to be mindful of your overall team budget cap. If a transaction would take your team over budget, you will not be able to complete that transaction.
All transactions between a team’s roster and the free agent pool are processed once a week on Sunday. Sunday’s transaction deadline is one minute before the first scheduled MLB game that day (not the first game involving a player on your roster). This means that during the week you can schedule to drop or add a player but the change will not take place until the coming Sunday’s transaction deadline. Any changes made after that point will come into affect the following Sunday.
Note: If you set up a trade on, say, Tuesday to add a player, when the transaction eventually goes through on Sunday it will use their salary value as it was on Tuesday (even though it might have changed since then).
(Transactions are different to moving players between your starting line-up and your bench, which can be done daily – see Your roster above.)
You score fantasy points for every player in your starting line-up by the time each player’s game starts that day.
Note: Pitchers score fantasy points only for pitching stats, not for offense!
|Home Run (HR)||5|
|Hit / Single (1B)||1|
|Extra Base Hit (EB)||2 for a double (2B)
3 for a triple (3B)
|Run Batted In (RBI)||3|
|Stolen Base (SB)||4|
(excluding Hit By Pitch, etc)
equivalent to 3pts per Inning Pitched (IP)
|Strike Out (K/SO)||1
(combined with the out = 2pts)
|Earned Run Allowed (ER)||-2|
|Quality Start (QS)*||5|
|Complete Game (CG)||10|
(combined with CG = 20pts)
* A Quality Start is defined in MLB as a starter who pitches at least six innings and gives up fewer than three runs
As Fantasy Baseball UK uses third-party platforms to run its fantasy leagues (namely Yahoo Sports and Fantrax) the leagues will use those platform’s respective MLB statistics sources. Fantasy points are awarded on the basis of those stats, which will be updated by the platforms along with the associated points and standings. 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/Fantrax.
League limits and refunds
Due to league maximum / minimum limits, it might not always be possible to accommodate every team or to run every intended league format. Although we will do our best, registering a team does not guarantee a league spot.
In league formats where managers purchase teams, the following refund conditions apply:
- If FBUK is subsequently not able to offer you a spot for the team you purchased, you will be offered a full refund for that team.
- If you purchase a team and then change your mind, you may request a refund minus the payment processing fees incurred by FBUK on the original purchase. The cut-off date for requests is seven days before the scheduled season start date.
- Once that cut-off date has passed, a manager may still request to withdraw a team from the league but we are unable to offer refunds.
Other rules and conditions
Fair play rules
Across all its leagues, Fantasy Baseball UK adopts the same ethos as Yahoo Sports in requiring 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 and Fantrax fantasy baseball platforms, 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 may be unable to make changes to team rosters retrospectively or award ‘missed’ fantasy points caused by the unavailability.
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. This will also depend on the format offered by any third-party fantasy baseball platforms we use. Normally, we’ll try to consult with team managers during the offseason to give them a chance of input.
People employed by an official sponsor or advertising partner of the game, or volunteers involved in running the Fantasy Baseball UK game or website, may participate in the game but must declare their interest to the game organisers.
Depending on both the nature of the person’s role and the types of prizes on offer, it will be at the FBUK Commissioner’s discretion as to whether a participant with a declared interest can receive a prize for which they become eligible, e.g. receiving a trophy for winning the league.
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 or Fantrax Help pages
- We may have provided answers to common questions in the Help section
- A fellow team manager or an FBUK admin might be able to help with your question in the FBUK Forums, which you can access from the Manager Options menu when logged in
- Send us an email through the Contact Us page