Before I outline where we will be heading in 2017, I want to take a moment for congratulations and a thank you.
First, congratulations to the two teams that have made it to the 2016 OOTL World Series: Speakers vs. The Plague. For the second straight year, the #1 seed will face the #2 seed. In case anyone is still unaware, The Plague defeated the Speakers 4-1 to win their first ever OOTL championship. Rumor has it that police were called in to calm the celebration taking place in Oberlin.
Second, I want to say thank you to Craig Dolan for the effort he put in the last two years to continue playing in this league after moving to Florida. The 2017 season will be played without Craig since we are able to add a previous league member. More on that later. This could be the end of Craig’s tenure in OOTL. I believe that Craig played in the OOTL for 11 seasons and captured 4 OOTL championships. Thank you again for helping keep the OOTL together over the past two seasons.
Now, where are we going in 2017? Please feel free to question anything that I am going to outline. Everything that I am going to list was discussed between Steve and me; and, I am hoping that the league will be okay with what was decided on.
First, due to Steve’s diligence, the OOTL will be adding a new member in 2017….well, for us old timers, we will be welcoming back a former member. Tim Shutt has agreed to return to the OOTL in 2017. Tim lives in Grantville and is excited to be returning. He left the league back in the early 2000’s but has decided he is ready to play again.
Now that we are going with 10 teams, what does that mean for the league in 2017? Tim will be drafting his team out of the Asian Tsunamis/Birds of Pray. This strategy was utilized in the past when Craig and Steve joined the league. This strategy is also utilized in case one of the teams is stronger than the other. I will draft against Tim. All players from both teams will be drafted. Anyone that I select will become available for the 2017 draft. Tim will have the option of making the first pick or he can go second and he would get two selections. This distribution draft will have a first pick and then Tim and I will alternate picking two players at a time until all players are selected. The time for this draft has not been set but the goal will be to have it completed it in early January.
Now, for the Rookie Draft. Based on what was done with the Browns last year, Tim will select between the playoff and non-playoff teams. For the first time that I can remember, there is an additional situation that must be addressed. The Tsunamis traded away many of the picks for the 2017 draft. Since the franchise no longer exists, the team technically still has to hold a spot in the draft due to the traded picks. The Tsunamis will be treated as a playoff team since they made it to the play-in game. The play-in game is to be treated as a playoff game in our league; therefore, even the team that lost the play-in game will be treated like a playoff team. Therefore, Tim will pick in front of the Tsunamis. If the Tsunamis traded a pick in a particular round, then the team that acquired the selection will get to choose after Tim. If the Tsunamis did not trade their pick in a particular round, then the pick will be skipped. Any teams that traded picks to the Tsunamis will be skipped in the round of the traded pick. I have attached a copy of the preliminary draft order. Please review and let me know if any errors are spotted.
There was discussion regarding schedule changes for 2017. This included potentially eliminating the 4-game series and playing 4 3-game series. Since we are adding a new owner, Steve and I thought it would be best to keep the schedule the same as it has been over the past couple of seasons. Therefore, we will continue playing 90 games with the 1st period consisting of the 4-game series. We can discuss any possible schedule changes for 2018 during the 2017 season. Also, since we are continuing with 10 teams, we will continue to have 5 teams make the playoffs. Dropping below 10 will change that, but since we are still at 10, Steve and I felt no change was necessary.
We need to begin planning on what our draft date will be. Typically, we choose a Sunday in February, but flexibility is always key in choosing a date. Kevin, please let me know if you are willing and able to host again for 2017. Please advise what your availability is and let the league know what dates will not work. I suggest we look at February 12, 19, 26, or March 5th.
Please start thinking about rule proposals. I already have received some and there are some things I would like to bring up. I will be listing some of these ideas further down in the email.
Please remember, during last year’s draft it was discussed about moving to the booklet APBA created instead of using the boards. I never got a chance to review that booklet and with Tim joining the league I believe that this is something we need to move on from for the time being. Also, we did discuss tracking BF for pitchers to determine if this is something that we would like to implement. Again, since we have a new member joining I would like to stick to what we have done. I don’t know who tracked this information and who didn’t but I am going to list a few pitchers from my team.
Edison Volquez over by 56 BF
Chris Sale over by 17 BF
King Felix over by 41 BF
Drew Smyly over by 49 BF
Jon Lester over by 40 BF
Justin Wilson under by 16 BF
Bryan Shaw under by 35 BF
George Kontos under by 31 BF
As you can see with my team, I seem to rely too heavily on my SP. It’s something to keep track of during 2017 and possibly implement during 2018.
Updating the Constitution to eliminate the day of rest following the end of the season for a play-in game.
How do we want to handle APBA eliminating the identification of XB players after this season?
How do we want to interpret the play under FIELDING ONE 2nd & 3rd under 16? How do we want to calculate the ability of a runner to score from 2nd base?
Alter Rule 2.24 – Instead of odd and even rolls determining which double is used, it would change to the following:
1-4 – would remain a 6 (or 4 with bases full)
5-6 – would change to a 3 (or 5 with bases full) – Ed
Implement a rule limiting how many sets of dice can be utilized during a series – Mike Mann
Updating some parts of the pick-off rule (I cant remember the specifics of what Steve wanted changed, but I at least wanted to list this so everyone was aware that it would be coming) – Steve
J4 players – Any player that is a J4 can be drafted, but must either be identified as a prospect player or be kept on the taxi squad/minors for the entire season. They are not eligible to be used. Any J4 player that is already on a roster is eligible to be used during that season – Brandon
For 2018 season, lower rosters from 36 to 32. 25 active players, 2 prospect players, 2 taxi squad, and 3 minors. – Brandon
Starting with the 2018 draft, limit each team to 10 draft picks – Brandon
Starting in 2018, each team will carry at least one starting pitcher that is graded 10 or lower. A pitcher graded 10 or lower MUST start 10% of the games played in any given season – Brandon
Please feel free to give me any rule proposals you may have or give me any that I may have missed.
Finally, I hope everyone is aware that cards are available to be ordered. For those of us that have ordered the disk, hopefully we will receive them on Monday (12/19). Based on what I know, the company is behind with the disk but it should be out soon, hopefully before Christmas. Brian is nearly completed with the pitching grades. Now, that the playoffs are completed the pitching grades will be completed shortly as well.
Welcome to Tim for rejoining the OOTL.
Goodbye and thanks to Craig for his time in OOTL.
Congratulations to The Plague on their first OOTL title. (PennLive reports that partying is still going on in Oberlin. Weather permitting the parade will be held Monday.)
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to each of you. Thank you for getting the 2016 season completed before Christmas.
I am sure that this email will generate questions and comments. Please feel free to send them all to Steve.