Story of the DDB

Dog Days Baseball is a fictional league that began in 1945. The date is not significant in terms of the style of baseball being played -- the history of this league is in no way intended to replicate the history of actual major league baseball. Even the nation and the cities are totally fictional.

The DDB has 24 teams in two leagues each containing three divisions of four teams each. Expansion or contraction is not expected, but cannot be totally ruled out.

Human owners took control of teams in 1953, after a significant amount of player and team history had been established.

 

Contents

Eligibility
Basic Game Settings
Simming Schedule
Importing and Exporting the Online League File
Spring Training, Organizational Goals, and Owmer Points
Ammy Draft and Sandwich Picks
All Star game, Annual Awards, and Hall of Fame
Playoffs and Kennel Cup
Negotiating Player and Personnel Contracts
Distinctive City Advantages
Making and posting player trades
StadiumProjects
Team logos
Miscellaneous Rules
Tips

Eligibility

  • You need a copy of the current version of OOTP, and you should be willing to install the patches soon after they come out. You must also be willing to buy the next version of OOTP when it goes on sale.
  • You need not be an OOTP veteran, but you should have played enough to know how the game works.
  • You must have significant time to devote on a steady basis. It is death to a league to have a bunch of semi-involved owners.

Ineligibility

In addition to the above, the following would disqualify you from participation in the DDB League:

  • Cheating, including (but not limited to) collusion or any attempt to control more than one franchise in the league.
  • Non-participation, including neglecting to turn in lineups, participate in drafts, or answer emails. (If you are going to be unavailable for a few days, you should use the in-game option to "go on vacation" and turn control over to the AI.)
  • Mistreatment of other people in the league… Please treat other people the way you would want to be treated. Although light-hearted banter is great, avoid running other GMs down. If someone emails you with a trade offer, please respond. If someone makes a one-side trade offer, assume that it was lack of insight and not an insult... If I get complaints about the way you treat people that I perceive as valid, I will let you know; if you do not fix the problem, I will ask you to leave the league -- even if you are competitively a successful owner.

The Basics

    • Financials on
    • No salary cap
    • Cash limit $100 million
    • Current player ratings are as vague as possible (1-5) to encourage the use of statistics rather than ratings. "Other ratings" such as fielding range, morale, etc, which cannot be observed statistically, are 1-10, as are potential, and scout ratings.
    • No DH
    • Position player fatigue in use
    • Scouting on ; no coaches
    • 40 man roster rule enabled
    • Minor league options rule enabled
    • Ghost players on in minor leagues
    • Rule 5 draft enabled (done by email)
    • Salary arbitration enabled
    • June 1 ammy draft -- we make the picks on the forum beginning in April
    • Foreign players enter the league at the default levels... International Amateur FA reveal date in early July
    • Personality Ratings On
    • Morale System On
    • Interleague Play Off
    • Wildcards On
    • Playoff Length Round 1: 5 games.   LCS and Kennel Series 7 games

Simming Schedule

We sim 7 days at a time every Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday in the early morning. (In other words, lineups are due late Friday, Saturday, Monday and Wednesday nights.)   During the playoffs and off season, I try to sim every day.

In general, I try to keep the league moving. Delays tend to poison an online league.

Imports and Exports

Updating and exports are normally done within the game engine.  However, if you have a problem updating, you can always do this outside the game engine – see the second link on the downloads page.  If you have a problem exporting, you can always email me the export file from your imports exports subfolder.

OOTP spring training used to allow a GM more control over the direction of his team.  In order to allow some control over the way the players are coached, each GM gets to state one organizational goal each season. Possibilities include, but are not limited to:

Offense
Defense
Pitching
Development of youth
Maintenance of veterans' skills
Power hitting
Batting eye
Baserunning
Pitching control
Throwing arms
Injury avoidance


* The effects of your organizational goal start during spring training and then continue throughout the season.

* The impact of the organization goal is affected by a hidden rating determined by the commish, based on (in order of weight):

      • Luck (annual random roll) -- this is half the overall variable!
      • A significant bonus for a new owner (players feel they must prove themselves to the new management)
      • A small bonus for weaker teams, as long as they seem to be trying to win (hungrier)

The impact of your organizational goal will normally be subtle. Average would be the equivalent of a skill/talent increase of 5 points (on the 200 point scale used by the player editor) for three to five players per season. Very often, the changes will not even cause your scout to report a rating change.

 

How can you maximize the effects of your goal?

* Pick goals that fit the talent on your team.  If you have a team without viable minor league SP prospects and choose “develop young starting pitchers” then the best you will probably get is a couple guys who top out in AAA instead of AA.

* Avoid goals that include only a very few players or an artificial list of specific players.  This very much lowers the chances of getting more than one “result” during the season.

* Avoid goals that include half your organization. This lowers the probable size of the “result  although it does increase the chances of some player being affected…  The sweet spot is probably a naturally occurring group of players that is about 15-30 players in size… Examples:

·         Batting eye for hitters on the 40 man roster

·         Control for minor league starting pitchers

·         Development of top 20 organization prospects

* Post prior to spring training At least one effect is guaranteed early in spring training… except for teams that have not posted an organizational goal

* Don’t give up just because you don’t see big results.  The luck rolls may work against you one year but then go your way big time the next season

Amateur Draft

      • The amateur drafts are conducted on the league forum, and the ammy draft class will be published as soon as the game engine allows.
      • The draft is entered into the game engine on June 1.
      • As soon as the ammy draft has been scouted (but no sooner than March 1 so that free agent sandwich picks are established), the commish will set up the draft forum and a draft schedule. The time allotted to make your pick will be longer for round one, shorter rounds two and three, with rounds 4-10 done by in-game list. If your time expires, the team after you may pick, but you do not lose your pick.
      • It is your responsibility to be sure not to take players already taken. If you are taking your pick later than scheduled, this includes players taken with lower picks than yours, which occurred during your delay.
      • It is your responsibility to accurately post first name, last name, and position.
      • Sending lists does not work very well because the commish cannot possibly be at his computer for the many days that it takes to complete the draft. It is generally better to make your pick when you get back to your computer, even if a few other teams get to pick before you. During round one, the picks go very slowly, and after round one, picking a few slots down rarely makes much difference.
      • At his discretion, the commish will make "reasonable" (but not closely thought out) picks for teams who are extremely late (days late) with picks.

·         The draft order will be determined by the game engine, except we use the following compensation system for teams that lose significant players to free agency:  1) All free agents signed for at least $50 million - a comp pick is granted at the end of round one.  2) All free agents signed for at least $20 million but less than $50 million - a comp pick at the end of round two. 3) Teams signing top free agents do not lose draft picks.

 

All Star Game

The game is simmed automatically.

Playoffs and Kennel Cup

All games are simmed within the game engine, as usual. (No taking control of your lineups for play-by-play). The games will be simmed on consecutive days, unless the Kennel Series participants both decide they want to move faster.

The schedules are as follows:
Round 1: Day 1 two games, Day 2 three games
League Championship Series: Day 1 two games, Day 2 three games, Day 3 two games
Kennel Cup: Day 1 two games, Day 2 two games, Day 3 two games, Day 4 final game (but we generally move much faster, if both GMs are able to)

Contracts and Off-season

All contract negotiations take place within the game.

Because any team losing their scout would be at a terrible disadvantage in the off season, we delay for a day at the end of the season to allow bids by email for scouts. Any team may take part. Minimum bid is the scout's asking price, all offers are for four years.  A team can bid on multiple scouts, but bids on everyone's first choice are compared and processed before looking at anyone's second choice.

No contract incentive may be offered that is not realistic in terms of that player's history.
For example, a player who has no history of being an above average successful starting player cannot be offered an MVP incentive. A relief pitcher cannot be offered an incentive for pitching 200 innings. No one can be offered an incentive for 800 at bats. If any team develops a pattern of pushing the envelope in the use of incentives, the commish reserves the right to have that particular team get advance approval for future incentives, and can void any particularly abusive contract.
(Hopefully it would never come to that.)

Teams are not all created equally! There's more to a team than its nickname and logo. Each team has its inherent strengths and weaknesses. You ignore these at your own risk. For a rundown of the teams, see the bottom of the Cities of the DDB page

Trading

        • Trading is neither encouraged nor discouraged. You may trade players, cash, or future draft picks (up to three years in advance.) In theory, the commish reserves the right to veto a trade in the best interests of the league, but this would be rare.
        • All trades must be posted in the proper forum, with correct first and last names, positions and league levels. If a draft pick is involved, it must be stated clearly: (Example: "Red Willow's #2 pick in 1951", NOT "a #2 pick" or "my #2 pick next year")
        • Conditional trades (depending on player performance or team finish) are not allowed.
        • Injuries and/or talent changes do not affect a confirmed trade.
        • Trades confirmed by the time lineups are due for a sim are entered into the league file after the games are run.

 

 

Stadium projects

You may enter into a renovation project in the off season. Such project must be announced by the beginning of the free agency period. Possibilities include:
$3 million for each block of 1,000 seats, up to 65,000 seating capacity.
$8 million for each block of 1,000 seats, above 65,000 to a limit of 80,000.
$8 million dollars to alter the stadium ratings up to a total of 10 points (could be one rating changed 10 pts, two ratings 5 pts., etc)
$20 million dollars and one level of fan loyalty to alter stadium ratings up to a total of 20 points
$50 million dollars and two levels of fan loyalty to alter stadium ratings up to a total of 30 points
Note that stadium alterations that work against defined team traditions will also cause you to take a hit in fan interest.
You may do renovations no more often than every three years.

Logos and team nicknames

Owners may change team logos and nicknames provided that

        • The name is in good taste
        • The logo is in good taste
        • You provide the logo (Keep in mind that it will appear on the website in two different two sizes: 135 pixels width x 122 pixels height AND 52 pixels width x 47 pixels height)

If you make a change in nickname, you should leave that nickname for at least three seasons. (This restriction is so that we don't get so many changes that teams lose all identity.)

Miscellaneous

        • Some teams receive "cheap legendary" coaches. These are handled automatically by the commish. When such vacancies occur, the commish simply signs a coach very cheaply and then edits the coach's rating(s).
        • The commish, at his discretion, may give a cash infusion or other aid to an ownerless team, so as to make the next owner's position less daunting.

Tips

        • Give some thought to your team's unique advantages and disadvantages.
        • Especially if you are not as experienced as some of the other owners, be careful about trading. You can quickly do your team damage that cannot be made up for many seasons.
        • Don't put too much stock in the game engine's star ratings for players.
        • Draft picks are valuable. You trade them off at your own risk. Good prospects already producing well at AAA are even more valuable, especially if they are not yet 26. These guys still have 2 seasons of $300,000 major league baseball in them, plus 3 more seasons you can hold onto them through arbitration.
        • Think over your draft picks carefully. Remember that these are the guys who will be starting in the bigs in a few seasons, and nowhere near all the good players will come from round one.
        • Scouting for the ammy draft is never a sure thing, even if you have a top notch scout.  In addition to the scout’s opinion, savvy drafters also look at: OSA scouting, and the in-game email listing the top players in the draft.  However, the best indicator – even better than your scout’s opinion – is the player’s performance in high school or college.  This is not realistic, but it is so accurate, you might even consider it an exploit.  (Just don’t try to compare college stats to high school stats.)
        • The market value for relief pitchers is usually somewhat low. Beware of trading a position player or starting pitcher for either a closer or middle reliever. In particular, don't give up too much for a reliever based on his recent performance stats.
        • You'll get a lot further in your trading (and avoid angering people) if you avoid the kind of offer where you say, "I want player X. Make me an offer." Put together an offer which shows about how much you are willing to trade for the guy.
        • Stadium ratings, city advantages, and organizational plans all have subtle but very real effects. The trick is to get them to add to each other, rather than spread the advantages around thinly. For example, if you have a city advantage for developing shortstops and a park favoring right handed contact hitting, you might draft/sign some extra right handed hitting shortstops, then make your organizational goal "right handed contact hitting" or even "infielders' right handed contact hitting." With a little time and luck, this strategy should leave you will a very good starter plus, hopefully, guys to trade.
        • Conversely, don't waste your advantages by having practically no such players on your roster. I won't name names, but I have applied bonuses some years, only to find that the team's organization is almost empty of any such player.
        • Also, do not expect city advantages, player attributes or organizational goals to turn rejects into productive players. The ideal targets are the many, many players who are almost good enough to help a major league team. You can often turn a backup type into a productive starter, but you won't turn a 28-year old who cannot compete in AAA into a good major league player.
        • Don't forget about fielding!  Many a weak pitching staff has been turned around with a rangy center fielder, an excellent shortstop, and a catcher with a high rating in "catching ability."
        • Smart traders (and FA signers) seek out abused players. Pitchers who have suffered from weak fielders, hitters underperforming in pitchers' stadiums, left handed hitters who perform much better against righties but have been pushed into the lineup against a lot of lefties, etc.
        • Don't underestimate the value of a player with a high rating in "bunting for a hit" -- but remember to utilize this in your team strategies, or it will do you little good.
        • Speaking of team strategies, use those settings. Your manager's pitching choices can be greatly affected by a combination of pitch count and hook setting. Similarly, it is unlikely that all your players should be stealing and bunting with the same frequency.
        • When comparing average players, don't forget outfield and catcher arm and base running instincts. Outs while baserunning have a pretty good chance of turning a game.
        • Consider using the seven day lineups. Among other things, this allows you to 1) decide when to give rest days to starters, 2) adjust your batting order when you give a big hitter the day off, and 3) make sure your best players are in there against your most important opponents.   Savvy GMs even make adjustments based on the weaknesses of upcoming starting pitchers.
        • Put some time into managing your minor leagues. You want to fill up the teams with guys who could, with a talent bump or two, become productive players... not over-aged slugs with no prayer of ever reaching the bigs. You want to teach players new positions. You want to name backups and avoid exhaustion which leads to injuries and resultant talent drops. And you definitely want to keep an eye on promotions.