For years, Grey and I have been thinking about what would be the perfect low-stakes paid league complement to our free Razzball Commenter Leagues (sign up now).
In 2014 and 2015, we co-sponsored 15-team $150 NFBC leagues (50 round slow drafts) and got a positive response from many of you. I cannot say enough good things about NFBC – great service, great people, great site. Unfortunately, we did not get anywhere near the turnout we get for RCL leagues (100 leagues vs 3?!) which puts us in a Field of Dreams-esque position when it comes to lobbying/negotiating a format more attractive to Razzball readers. No offense to people who love that movie but ‘build it and they will come’ does not work very well in the business world.
I mentioned this dilemma to my buddy Dr. Roto when he told me that Scout.com – which has hosted the Fantasy Football World Championships for years – was contemplating Fantasy Baseball paid leagues for 2016. A partnership was born….
Here are the rules for the $88 Scout MLB Razzball Pennant Leagues that are available NOW and will feature Razzball writers + Scout.com Fantasy experts.
Just like RCL
- 12-team 5×5 mixed league
- 2C/1B/2B/SS/3B/5 OF/CI/MI/UTIL/9 P
- Only difference from RCL is the 2nd catcher. Punt x 2!
- $88/team – prizes for winning the league + grand prizes (details here)
- Weekly roster changes
- No trades/waivers but you draft a 21 person bench
- Slow draft (6 hour max per pick, clock off from 12-9 EST)
- Season ends August 28th
Let me explain why these new wrinkles exist:
- I cannot explain why it is $88 vs a number divisible by 10 or 25 (Someone at Scout really likes Michael Irvin or Eric Lindros?) but we pushed really hard for a smaller entry fee than $150. If you like the $150 price point, just add $26 and you’ve got two teams!
- Weekly Roster Changes
- We love the enthusiasm you all bring to the RCL leagues when it comes to optimizing your team with daily roster changes/pickups. It is this enthusiasm that drove us to create Streamonator and Hittertron. But, jeez, if we allowed daily roster changes in paid leagues, you might never see your friends or family again. Or get fired. So weekly it is!
- No trades/waivers but 21 person bench
- This was a tough call vs a weekly FAAB but Grey and I (more me) really enjoyed this wrinkle from previous years’ NFBC drafts. It can be frustrating when you do tons of draft research but then your roster fills up and sleepers that you loved in the preseason find their way onto your competitors’ teams throughout the season via free agency. Wouldn’t it be awesome to hoard those great picks as if you had your own Triple-A team? That is what the 21 person bench allows you to do. And Streamonator/Hittertron still come in handy because you can rotate in/out your hitters/pitchers based on matchups.
- Slow Draft
- 44 round drafts are not meant to be done in one sitting. From past experience, my guess is these drafts will take about 2-3 weeks to complete. I personally like it because it means I could do more drafts without reserving a 3 hour chunk out of my schedule.
- Ends August 28th
- This was the brainchild of Dr. Roto. I think it’s great for two reasons: 1) It lets Fantasy Footballers transition straight to football in September and 2) September MLB can be a little wonky with all the callups. So this allows me to put a little more focus on my other leagues.
Signups are under way at Scout.com. New leagues are opened as soon as one fills up. Note that you will also see a $44 ‘Draft-n-go’ option that we are not co-sponsoring. Similar setup but it just optimizes your weekly lineup so you literally do nothing after drafting. So if you are leaving the country April 1st or are maybe standing trial right now (<cough> Jose Reyes </cough>), this format is perfect for you.
If we get a good turnout this year, I think Scout.com will be incented to put in some additional wrinkles based on reader feedback (i.e., I’ve talked to them about adding Streamonator/Hittertron weekly values for tool subscribers). So sign up!
Oh, and in case you are curious, we will make nominal money at best with this partnership unless this really blows up. Hell, our best chance of making any real money out of this is probably winning the grand prize. The motivation for this is 99% about providing another league alternative to our readers.
If you have any questions, please add them below in the comments section.