Yes, and I’m sorry- I thought it was clear what I was advocating:
No cap and 2 active SP’s, which creates a natural limit on both roster management as well as with streaming in a way that is no different than any other position on the roster, and which leads to a more balanced market/league environment when it comes to roster building. Additional bonuses to this setup include stimulating a more active trading environment, and an added level of strategy as streaming and projecting probable starters becomes much more of a challenge since it is regulated by the limits of the setup and not an arbitraty soft cap. I also like 6 RP’s, but that’s nitpicking and not half as important as active SP slots.
The absolute only downside to 2 active SP’s is that you can’t play three or four or however many guys you want on the same day. But that would be true for everyone; which means the SP playing field is level and no one can manipulate a “feature” to gain an edge. In my experience, this is the setting that leads to the most enjoyment from the most owners throughout most of the season- I’ve tried IP caps, GS caps, penalties, adjusting scoring, and adjusting roster/active hitter size, and I’ve been in leagues that simply cap the number of P’s or SP’s on the roster. Nothing works better than limiting starts per day- it’s like an inverse-streaming feature, I guess you could say.
You are right- streaming is an aspect of H2H. But my experience is that the best gameplay for everyone happens when you neutralize it- not embrace it. I can hit that 60 IP cap on a Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, it doesn’t really matter- all that matters is that I can go over it by some amount that gives me a statistical edge. And if I have stockpiled enough SP’s on the bench to pick and choose who I want to play on whatever day works best, the whims of the schedule has no effect on my strategy.
My entire concern is not based on what happens in the first two weeks of a new league in a multi-season format. My concern is that the strategy for this is simple: overspend in the draft on a lineup, then hoard SP’s throughout the year. The first year will see at least half the owners late to the game with little to no shot at having a successful year before May is over. Assuming those owners aren’t turned off and stay for another season, then the future of the league (or market) will always be dominated by starting pitching- how many SP’s can you roster, is it worth carrying any Hitter on the bench at all, what’s the value of a mid/lower-tier arm, etc. Hitters will become a secondary thought, and the ones that could have value as a platooner will actually have close to zero value since the 10 or 15 points you could get in a week from spot-starting a Bench hitter pales in comparison to the potential 25+ you can get out of one GS.
I don’t like that type of gameplay, and it doesn’t need to be a “feature” of H2H leagues. If you limit GS per day, then there’s no market advantage to hoarding SP’s and people can build their rosters just like they do with Total Points leagues (which, I bet, is how people will draft, at least to start). A stream-heavy design will take away from the enjoyment of at least half the league after the first couple months of the year and will forever skew the league (or market) to one side of the game, whereas a balanced approach to roster-building would lead to more people staying engaged throughout the year as they’re able to stay competitive without a large number of SP’s or staying constantly focused on the SP market.
With the volatility of each weekly matchup, I’ve found that two-week playoff matchups are both more competitive and fairer for the teams involved. Obviously, a three-round Playoff would mean the post-season starts in August. Could it work as the first round or first two playoff rounds are one week and the final/championship round is two or even three weeks?
I’ve also wondered in the past if it wouldn’t be better to take all the playoff teams and schedule them all against each other for the entire month of September. So each Playoff team is playing five matchups simultaneously to finish the season, with the winner having the best record over that span (either as 20 weekly matchups/5 per week, or as 5 individual matchups over one full month).
Can you do simultaneous matchups in a week? One thought for a 6-team playoff (while avoiding any Bye’s) might be to have the #1 seed play both the #5 and #6 at the same time while the #2 seed plays the #3 and #4 for the first round, making for 6 games over two elimination matchups with the four remaining teams after the first round finishing the year in regular matchups. Likewise, you could have the same setup but only boot the loser of the 3/4 (versus the 2) and the 5/6 (versus the 1) seed- so the top two seeds advance regardless of the first round results, but they’re still “playing to eliminate” two of the other seeds.