Last year, I asked around regarding interest in a realistic GM league. I'm here to gather interest in it one more time. If we can get the necessary participation, we'll give it a shot. But I do have an interesting twist I want to gauge.
Essentially, we'll take some shortcuts in year one to accommodate CBS Sportsline Fantasy Commissioner features. Instead of the "runs scored" and "runs allowed", I'm working on a proposed point system to take into account various events that affect a game. There would be seven categories with each category being a win.
But here's what I would need:
* 24 owners, picking an MLB city from either the NL or AL, and coming up with your own 'nickname' for that city. We would be asking for about $25 from each owner per season, with roughly $10 going for expenses and the other $15 would be pooled for winnings.
* There will be four divisions of 6 teams, 2 in each league
* There would be 23 weeks in the regular season, each scoring period against an opponent with (7) games (categories). 161 games total.
* (8) teams in the playoffs, four division champions and four wildcards, for a total of (3) playoff weeks.
* Lastly, I need to know if other people interested in being PLAYER AGENTS. Yes, you heard that right. Are you interested in representing the players themselves with contract negotiations, exercising options and determining whether or not to go to arbitration? There would be a $5 or $10 admin fee, but you would be competing against other player agents for rewards and winnings based on the money you get your clients, yet avoiding arbitration, dealing with GM's well, etc. This is an experimental idea, but I want to see if there's interest. I would like to start with roughly 8 agents, but this idea can be scrapped if we don't have the interest.
* Active MLB roster (23) players, 40-man roster and a minor league system of up to (60) players to hold prospects and let them develop
* MLB, Split & Minor League contracts with realistic salaries and a salary cap that will have payroll deducted throughout the year, challenging teams to stay under the cap by the end of the season. If you go over, you will have a tax that gets distributed to teams in your division the following year. Contracts will be structured like MLB, with player, club & mutual options and buyouts for those options as well as guaranteed seasons. Signing bonuses are also available, paid in the first year. In the proposed format, if we can pull it off, you would be negotiating with the player agents and they decide who to sign with. The shortcut version would award bids based on annual value of the deal (but we'll cross that bridge if we're unable to pull this off).
* Players would accrue service time (20 scoring periods constitutes a full season of service with each week being .05 of a season). Three (3) years constitutes arbitration eligible and six (6) years constitutes free agency. There is also Super-2 eligibility. Additionally, players have three (3) option seasons to be reserved when on the 40-man roster and activated.
* Clubs would decide each year whether or not to tender their arbitration-eligible players. If tendered, player agents would decide whether to go to arbitration. There will still be an opportunity to go to reach an agreement before arbitration, but in any event, where size of the pay raise either by settlement or arbitration will count in favor of the agent for rewards, losing in arbitration would not. For Arbitration, there is a fantasy baseball service that would handle our arbitration for a flat fee (included in the amount I gave). Essentially, if it gets to arbitration, the club and agent would both give a figure, and the arbitration service would render the winner - having a arbitration winner's ratio of not more than 60/40 each year for clubs or agents. In other words, they would make sure each side gets a fair amount of arbitration wins each year.
* Trades, waivers, etc. would be almost identical to the real thing. There would be a trade deadline of week 18 (ish) for non-waiver trades. There will be a spreadsheet form where you can submit a waiver claim, and I would have this set up where it should automate a response, posting a message on the league message board about a waiver being made. Claims will be made to a designated third party who will award them as necessary. Teams will have the option to pull back the revocable claims, but outright waivers or a second revocable claim on a player will be irrevocable. Cash will be able to be traded with 50% traded at the time of the trade and the other 50% of the amount the following July (to avoid tax manipulation).
* There would be an annual rookie draft which would cover all the players from the previous MLB amateur draft. You would negotiate with the agents, who would have their own draft for representation of these players.
* There would be a Rule 5 draft. Essentially, players in your minor league system more than 4 years must be protected on your 40-man roster or exposed to the Rule 5 draft. Also, players with MLB experience of more than 'x' amount of games (TBD) will also need to be protected. Teams wishing to draft a player in the Rule 5 draft, though, must not only put that player on their 40-man roster but keep them in the active lineup all season, otherwise must sell the player back at half-price of the original fee (which is $50,000 for Rule 5 picks).
If the player agent aspect doesn't work out, there are some available workarounds, such as an automated Arbitration number for the player's figure as well as the mentioned average annual value being the criteria for high bids on a free agent. But obviously the human interaction would be more interesting, more fluid (and arguably much more fun).
I'm just getting settled down to a new place, so it's been hectic. I still have to make sure I'll be good to get this kind of thing going the next few weeks, on top of having another league I'm considering joining.
But do we have interest for this? 24 owners and approx. 8 player agents.
What say you?
PS - My thinking is that the team you pick would grant you their minor league organization to start with, but we would have a straight draft to fill major league rosters for now. You would be assuming their current contract & status, knowing you must fit that player within the salary cap.