H2H Gameplay Strategy Discussion

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I understand all that, but you understand how the alternative (as it was this time a year ago) would’ve been worse, right? Because it would’ve allowed a few teams to corner the SP market and completely snuff out over half the league by throwing as many IP’s as possible at every matchup…

As frustrating as the 2 SP rule is (was), the fact is that everyone else in the league was in the same boat. As a game designer/product manager, surely you’re able to appreciate how setting limits like this was meant to keep everyone playing on the same level field…

So then owners like yourself had to find that ‘replacement level’ for SP’s- or at what point it didn’t benefit you to carry more SP’s and instead use your resources elsewhere. This wouldn’t have been the case with additional SP slots- even if there was just one additional slot the entire format would’ve been a joke because of how pitching-heavy every single league would’ve devolved into.

If that “wrecked” your season, well… sorry not sorry, because I’m sure it also helped many more owners who would’ve been on the wrong side of a pitching-dominated format if the alternative was used.

I think choosing which two SP’s to start on any given day IS a “meaningful choice”. If you choose wrong, it affects your matchup. Just like if an MLB MGR chooses the wrong matchup it can affect the game. In fact, I would argue that your choices have MORE meaning in a 2 SP format; any schmuck can start every SP who’s scheduled for that day, but taking the time to evaluate each pitcher/matchup and making your informed decision (nevermind your ability to manage your roster around your SP’s MLB usage) is what makes this a true “fantasy sport”.

OBVIOUSLY there’s differences here between this and real life, but in real life you still can’t just decide to steamroll the other team by having an abundance of pitchers or being able to start your #1 and #2 on the one day for the one game that you really need both pitcher’s production (‘Game 7’s’ notwithstanding.

NONE of us have control over how MLB managers use their players, or how the MLB schedules its games, or when an umpire crew will decide to call a rain delay, etc… And THAT is what’s at the heart of your discontent; not that you didn’t have control over who to start, but that the boundaries of the design kept you from using all of your players according to their MLB usage. I can’t choose to start a player for only one game of a double-header, or choose to swap-out the stats when a SP only gets 2 IP in a game delayed by weather. The 2 SP rule was no different of a limitation than any of those- it’s just maybe more extreme than what you were expecting. But everyone is entirely at the whim of how players are used in the MLB…

I agree, and props to Niv for designing something that better allows for that. But a 2 SP format didn’t keep you from making “smart” decisions relative to your matchups; they were simply decisions that carried more competitive weight.

You missing out on a huge game by the guy you didn’t start doesn’t necessarily mean it would’ve affected the outcome, and that’s because your opponent was playing with the same limitations. Maybe the guy he didn’t start has a bad game, but then if both of you could’ve started all three under different rules then it all would’ve been a wash anyway. So all we’re talking about is how the activity and lineup decisions of each manager affected your matchups… and again, my opinion is that a 2 SP rule encourages more activity and better fantasy matchups.

If we’re talking about “feel”… then, again, how would it ‘feel’ to be the owner who drafted heavy on Hitters and reasonably on Pitchers, only to get hammered by the people who were quick to shed quality Hitters on their bench for a bunch of bottom-end SP’s in order to get the edge in IP?

Heck yea, man- and now ottoneu is the only fantasy format with such an innovative fix to an industry wide problem!

So, thanks a TON to Niv.

But also, realize that before now no one had coded an answer to this problem- and that’s why the 2 SP rule was appropriate last year.

Yes, I agree. My point at the time was more how you can’t please everyone, as my response here was chiefly because of how upset people were over the 2 SP rule in the first couple months last season. But as to “playtesting” 2 SP’s versus more SP’s with H2H leagues using this type of scoring, I’ve personally already done plenty of that… and that’s why I was so emphatic in my defense of the format.

ALL THAT SAID, and because of all my own “playtesting”, I stand by my point that RP’s are STILL dramatically undervalued, relative to MLB’s usage, because of how SV’s/HLD’s are scored. So while Niv has fixed one problem with SP usage, I am still skeptical that you’ll see the sort of Hitting/Pitching balance that’s in Total Points leagues because of the RP scoring issue. Which is to say, hoarding an excess of SP’s will still have some competitive value next season.

Excellent discussion. Per my earlier comments, I don’t think that there is a “right” answer for the format, but think it was a good choice to add the option of a weekly GS cap. These leagues will have different values on different players, just like 4X4 places a very different value on players than 5X5 or 6X6 or Points.

Given these changes, I think there are a couple features that should be added for next year:

  1. Game start cap by position. In its current form, particularly with a bye week option, the GS cap for position players is not achieving its purpose in H2H. As pointed out earlier, it’s easy to stay under the cap as you can bench players on Sat/Sun in weeks where the outcome is relatively clear. But, to the extent it does mean something, then late in the year there is a big disadvantage in how it’s calculated as one team can bench their players during an entire bye week, thus gaining 5-6 extra games; while another team will have to use those. Maybe this is intentional, and a benefit of getting a bye, but this should be clear. An option to “fix” would be making the GS cap only apply to the regular season and then having a weekly cap in the playoffs.

  2. Providing one place for looking at your players’ upcoming schedule, including projected games started. I know a 2-start look was added, but other formats (Yahoo, ESPN) give one quick view of all players on your roster’s upcoming weekly schedule by day, with starters marked. This should be updated daily as starters are moved around, so owners can project ahead to which players they want to start when.

  3. Final week of playoffs. Many other sites provide options for when playoffs end, particularly driven by teams sitting good players the last week. I understand the value of going to the end of the regular season to mimic MLB, but this also sets up challenges at the end, which are unique to H2H vs season-long formats. Regardless, this dynamic, as well as others, is another reason why there should never be a lock on transactions during the playoffs.

  4. Giving a better look at Openers and “Starters” to follow. This is harder to implement, but as baseball evolves to have more Openers, having visibility into this will be increasingly important.

All in all, these are improvements on a game that is already great. And, in my experience it is the community of active owners that continues to make Ottoneu fun.

Currently, the GS cap only applies to the regular season, and there is no cap during the playoffs. I think there’s probably some validity to adding a “no position player GS caps” option for H2H leagues.

A schedule view was added VERY late last season.

I am pretty sure it does not have position starters for games beyond the current day, but I can see if there’s a way to get that data. I prefer sticking with the tried and true method of showing starters once lineups are posted. Extrapolating position starters isn’t super hard, and I’d be worried about posting starters that then change (already a pain point for when SPs are scratched), so that’s my hesitancy here. Worth expanding into a wishlist item, maybe?

There is one playoff option that allows avoiding the last week of the playoffs, but maybe there should be more options. Maybe not making the championship game 2 weeks across all options would be a good first step…

Thanks for the feedback!

Thanks for the reply. I’m not sure that is how the GS cap worked last year in the playoffs. My opponent in the playoffs had his MI reach the cap, and he didn’t get credit for the position. This didn’t impact the outcome, but I do remember it happening. And, if the cap is only going to apply to the regular season, shouldn’t it be pro-rated to that by number of weeks/games?

Honestly, it should be thrown away from season-long and remade as you suggested to actually fit the format. I don’t know if streaming OFs is the same kind of problem as streaming SPs, so I’d be happy to give the option to remove the GS cap, but if any of you with more H2H experience find position player streaming to be a challenge, I can look into a similar weekly GS cap to SPs.

Thanks Niv. Sorry if I wasn’t clear, I don’t think a weekly cap for position players during the whole season makes sense. I was trying to point out the challenge with the position player cap extending through the playoffs and some teams having a bye. If others don’t see this as an issue, then no worries.

Ok, I guess we are talking about separate things.

  1. Playoffs already do not have any GS cap. There may have been a bug related to this last season, but I have confirmed that this is true going forward.

  2. Next regular season for H2H, I am not sure if GS caps make any sense for position players. This seems to be the same point @BrassMonkey is making as well. If there’s a reason for a matchup GS cap for position players, let me know. Otherwise I will focus on adding an option to remove the GS caps for the regular season in H2H leagues

At least in H2H points, if there is a GS cap for pitchers, but not for hitters, it will incentivize owners to load up their rosters to include replacement-level position players just to do as much as possible to squeeze every point out of every week, but I agree that it is probably not necessary in H2H categories leagues.

For those interested, we are starting a H2H Champions League. The league is open to anyone who has won an Ottoneu championship before, and is a great chance to compete against other good, active owners as well as to draft an entire team. Send me a message if you’re interested as we’re actively recruiting people now.

Niv, what was decided with regards to the GS caps for position players for H2H? It will dramatically impact my auction strategy for my last few spots if I need to load up on $1 players to stream for points or if I’m going to instead preference prospects. Thanks.

I let it slide too long so there won’t be any changes for the 2019 season regarding position player game caps.

Thanks for the quick reply. I think that’s better personally. But, we’ll see how it goes this year.

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I had this happen last year. Literally would have won the league by a point or two. Instead lost by 11, as my 3B was hitting game 163 in the last day of the playoffs. Sigh.

I’m glad for this change (or bug squashing). And I agree that positional game caps are not needed in H2H.

I disagree. It is up to u to manage the cap situation as the year goes on. I don’t like H2h for that reason and the fact of having 10 Sp go in one period. In points leagues it is a strong advantage to load up on Sp and have them go with 10 Sp compared to a guy that has 7 Sp for the week. A 1500 inning cap would take care of that. It is just my opinion tho. I got in a h2h and as it entered its second year amendments were made in my opinion to make sp worse.

H2H Newbie Question:

How much do we need to actually worry about the position player caps, given that the regular season ends early to allow for start of playoffs, where caps no longer matter?

Do I need to proactively leave positions empty, so that the projections say I’m on track for only 162? Or can I just go for maximum points, knowing that I will have light-schedule days where I can’t play someone anyway, and knowing that the playoffs will end the season early?

I have an “easy” matchup this week, and not sure if I should sit players to avoid hitting cap later, or go for maximum points in case I need a tie breaker at end of season.

Games played projections are based on a 162 game schedule. If your leagues have playoffs, you do not need to worry about the 162 game cap, since you probably won’t be able to get to 162 games played by the end of August.

I actively sit guys on Saturday or Sunday during weeks when I’m winning by a lot. That way I don’t have to worry about the caps in the playoffs. But, admittedly there is some risk to this. Also, it’s worth mentioning, that this will change based on your league’s playoff format. If teams get a bye for a week, then you can sit everyone that week and save yourself some extra games toward the cap. Obviously have to earn that playoff spot first though.

@BrassMonkey Game caps do not exist in the playoffs, like I wrote to you here:

There is no reason to sit players in any playoff league.

EDIT Also as written here:

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