Head-to-Head scoring coming to Ottoneu Fantasy Baseball in 2018

Tags: #<Tag:0x00007fbecdbf3ec8> #<Tag:0x00007fbecdbf3d60> #<Tag:0x00007fbecdbf3bd0>

I don’t think they should… Don’t fight the luck, embrace the luck… This is basically my entire approach to this project :slight_smile:

For the 4 team playoffs, will there be an option of making the playoff matchups two weeks a piece?

1 Like

Again, regarding existing points leagues that adopt the September playoff format:

Those leagues would function like today’s points leagues but the top 4 (or 6) teams based on total points would get into the playoffs, correct?

Once playoffs start they would function according to H2H playoff rules, but just want to confirm how teams actually make the playoffs in non-H2H leagues.

1 Like

No, I think that would be counter to the goal of introducing some luck-based excitement to Ottoneu. Well, let me say no for 2018, at least.

Yeah, I guess I had the assumption that leagues with playoffs would also have divisions, but I can see how that is actively harmful in non-head-to-head leagues. So let me process that out a bit more. I think what you described (top 4 or 6 on straight standings get in) makes the most sense.


With the leagues having divisions, will there be unbalanced schedules, each team facing their division opponents more than out of division opponents?

1 Like

I’d like to do this, but it will end up depending on how my second pass at a schedule generator goes. In football, it is unbalanced, but the number of weeks and limitation on options combine to make it work out perfectly. Once I’m further along on execution I will be able to speak to this with more authority.


Would there be any way to expand the league to 14-16 teams? I’d love to move my CBS H2H league over to Ottoneu

A lot of the economy is pretty hardcoded around a 12 team league, but I’d love to test this out with you if you’d be open to it. We have had some light success with 10-team leagues. Shoot me a note, help@ottoneu.com

Ya, I’d love to. We were talking about moving to Fantrax for 2018 but Ottoneu is just so much better, I’ll send you an email

1 Like

Will divisions stay the same every year, or be randomized each year? Having them be the same would build rivalries and make trading in the division interesting.

Divisions are customizable in football and I plan on doing the same in baseball. So, you can leave them as they are every season, or realign if you need to due to competitive reasons.


I agree, if there are only 2SP spots you could end up having three pitchers on the same night and not being able to start them all.

Head-to-head leagues will not have a weekly lineup option. Head-to-head leagues will also only have 2 SP slots and 1 C slot, instead of the 5 SP slots and the 2 C slots of the existing Ottoneu Fantasy Baseball games.

UPDATE: Per the thread below, I am leaning towards a matchup limit of 60 IP instead of switching from 5 SP slots to 2. Because of the nature of head-to-head rewarding daily engagement, I am still leaning towards moving to 1 C slot instead of 2.

FWIW, I’ve been running (what I call) “ottoneu style” H2H leagues on Yahoo & ESPN for a few years. In my experience, having only 2 active SP slots has worked the best. This is primarily because all fantasy services have a loophole where you can exceed the weekly IP or GS limit by starting as many probable SP’s on the day in which the limit is reached. Obviously people can do this now in ottoneu, but it’s a much different effect to have SP’s scoring in 1520 IP after 6 months of games than to always have teams going 5-25 IP over the limit every single week.

I’ve seen leagues (including ones I haven’t run) shift dramatically to the pitching side of the game because of this- as in people would purposely roster fewer hitters than the number of active hitting slots available just to have the most SP’s they can possibly roster for this reason.

So my biggest concern is, will these H2H leagues have this same loophole? If so, I would strongly advocate for the 2 SP option (again, based on experience). It does more than limit streaming, it keeps the league on level footing- after all, if MLB teams have to decide on a rotation and can’t throw 5 SP’s at one matchup, then why not here too? I understand the tough luck of having 3 or 4 good SP’s starting on the same day, but at least you know that every matchup would be played with both owners starting no more than the best two pitchers they can every night.

The other issue- because each matchup is based largely on luck- is when an SP doesn’t make his scheduled start for some reason (like a late-scratch or a rainout or something). One idea that I’ve seen that would be entirely unique - and I don’t know how feasible it is - would be to use a “Depth Chart” for SP’s, so if a guy you’ve placed as your #1 doesn’t play you can still use the points from a pitcher further down the depth chart for that day. Obviously this doesn’t really matter with 5 SP’s and a soft IP limit since the chief strategy would be to just go all-out with as many arms as possible on the final day.

Also, regarding “luck”: If the idea is to reward the best performing team all year, I think it’s still important to minimize the effect of luck. One thing I’ve been able to do (with FanTrax) is make a season schedule in which each team can play all the teams in one division simultaneously for each scoring period during the regular season. So while teams are still engaged in individual H2H matchups, they’re playing 3 or 4 games per week which makes for a more reliable season record as the sample size of games is that much larger. Again, I don’t know how feasible it is but it’s probably the main feature that sells me on FanTrax over any other fantasy platform for H2H purposes. I’d also argue that 2-week (one-on-one) playoffs are much better for both competition and fairness purposes, particularly when prize money is involved.

All in all, I’m extremely pleased to see this development! But I do hope you’ll reconsider these aspects as I think they are very important to the success of any H2H league.


The point about soft inning caps is a good one - I’ve written extensively about why soft inning caps are a necessity, and finding a balance between inning caps and SP slots is probably the right answer - maybe 3 SP and also a 60 IP soft cap. The tough choices that would require would be a feature, not a bug.

OK, but at what point does the exploitation of a feature start to seem like a bug on the game? At the least, I would say to allow Commissioners to have the option of setting a 2-5 Active SP’s and Some IP Cap or No IP Cap when they open the league, even if it’s an option that can only be set once and can’t be customized later.

There is a difference between accepting normal variance, making a luck-based game, and minimizing luck. I think the H2H format I proposed accepts normal variance. I think if you want to minimize luck, season-long points exists. I’d like to see more before I start adding a bunch of variance-minimizing options that would intimidate and confuse new users in order to reduce variance to a “season long points season” amount, if that makes sense.

I loved your post in the original H2H request thread and thought very long and hard about multiple matchups, and I landed that they are a slight overcorrection that undermines the approachability that H2H brings to fantasy baseball. I’m willing to revisit this in future years, but in order to release H2H for 2018, multiple matchups are off the table.

I don’t really agree with the notion of adding as many options as possible - it makes an already challenging game unapproachable and intimidating. There is a technical reason for soft inning caps, which I wrote about here and have referenced multiple times on these forums.

Rather than making options here, I’d rather try to figure out a good default solution and just stick with that - which is true about a lot of Ottoneu design decisions, and seems to have worked ok so far.

I understand- and thanks for the compliment. And also thanks for doing this, I think it’s a great addition to the game and I’m excited to see any version that you release!

1 Like

It wasn’t just a compliment, and I’ll say it here so everyone can read it: I had this thread and this post open in my browser the entire month of October while I was writing my plan for head-to-head that I then had to run by my investors.

@LuckyStrikes said it multiple times in that thread but I’ll repeat it - I read the Wishlist stuff, I think very carefully about it, and I want to implement as much of it as I can. Great posts sharing your fantasy experiences and how they can improve Ottoneu are always welcome here and who knows, maybe they’ll spur me to introduce a new scoring mode.