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Runelvys Hernandez

Best ways to expand an existing keeper league

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Before I begin, let me preface this topic by mentioning that this post likely could belong in the main forum OR the Bench Coach. The topic focuses on general strategy and not my particular league. Yes, my keeper is expanding next year, and this topic piqued my interest as a result. However, this question is more to garner discussion about league strategy regarding expansion and to discuss options, what's worked and what hasn't, etc (just like the Yahoo/ESPN/CBS platform topic on this board). So if this is better suited for BC, then I apologize.

If a keeper league is planning on expanding to add more teams, what are the options for bringing them into the league? Does anything change from draft style (auction vs. snake)?

I've read about a couple options.

A) Allow the new teams to start fresh, while everyone else keeps their keepers. This would obviously only work if there were a few keepers per team, and not a "dynasty" format. They have to develop their talent from scratch and build from the ground up, starting with the draft.

B ) Allow new teams to participate in an expansion draft. New teams select from unkept players from the existing teams to build a foundation for their team.

C) Allow new teams to have either some supplemental picks or extra auction money to compensate for their not having any keepers.

There really is not much info on this out there. Has anyone ever tried this? What's worked, and what hasnt?

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We do B, it seems to work out well. Year one can be rough, but after that, teams are competitive.

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It really depends on how big the league is and how many keepers per team. Could you elaborate?

I primarily play in keeper leagues ranging from 12/3 (teams/keepers) to all out dynasty leagues with 100 man rosters, from snakes with limited minor leaguers to auctions, and have for the last 15 years so I've been through this a couple of times and have some ideas.

Definitely not A.

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Well ours is the league in my signature - 5 keepers and auction mixed league. Players can be kept for an additional $3 every year with no length limits on how long a player is kept.

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Weve been at it for over 20 years, and we essentially do option B and to be honest, with only 5 keepers if they manage right its not impossible they can compete.

- You can do this a couple of ways:

1. Everyone submits their keepers, teams then have a 5 round expansion draft of the leftovers. If you want to give them some sort of closing the gap maybe you eliminate the $3 bump for players they take and/or give them an extra $10 in FAAB. One of the issues you have is that a $3 bump in a 275 league is pretty minimal with no end in sight, its probably not overattractive to new owners, they feel like these players are stuck on teams forever, I might reconsider to contract years myself.

2. You can do an expansion draft with only 3 protected players, when one of yours gets taken, you get to add one more keeper and so on and so forth, I think the NBA or NFL used to do their expansion this way, when we had a large expansion one year (3 teams) went from 11 owners to 14, we did this.

We have never had trouble getting new owners for our 10-keeper league, so you shouldnt have any issues getting people in a 5-keeper league, though I may look at contract years or bumping the $3 amount a bit.

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Weve been at it for over 20 years, and we essentially do option B and to be honest, with only 5 keepers if they manage right its not impossible they can compete.

- You can do this a couple of ways:

1. Everyone submits their keepers, teams then have a 5 round expansion draft of the leftovers. If you want to give them some sort of closing the gap maybe you eliminate the $3 bump for players they take and/or give them an extra $10 in FAAB. One of the issues you have is that a $3 bump in a 275 league is pretty minimal with no end in sight, its probably not overattractive to new owners, they feel like these players are stuck on teams forever, I might reconsider to contract years myself.

2. You can do an expansion draft with only 3 protected players, when one of yours gets taken, you get to add one more keeper and so on and so forth, I think the NBA or NFL used to do their expansion this way, when we had a large expansion one year (3 teams) went from 11 owners to 14, we did this.

We have never had trouble getting new owners for our 10-keeper league, so you shouldnt have any issues getting people in a 5-keeper league, though I may look at contract years or bumping the $3 amount a bit.

The 3 protected players part - are they protected in addition to your keepers? Or do you mean the keepers themselves?

We like the lower salary bump because we don't mind having the ability to keep players for many years, even the majority of his career. It makes it fun for tracking a favorite player. We keep keeper numbers to 5, however, in order to leave talent available and prevent a team dominating before the draft even starts. We like it so far.

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I think option B is the way to go: allow people to keep unkept players. This obviously works best if prices or draft round is attached to players. If it is an auction league, I think a $3 bump per year is just going to make things ridiculously slow. I would strongly suggest $5 to create more turnover.

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I get everyone's point about the $3 bump, but we all like it. It allows a reward for cultivating "pet players" who can be franchise cornerstones and you can root for them their whole career. Not that I am completely opposed to bumping it a bit, but we have 12 managers who like it and at least 6 great baseball fan buddies of ours who have wanted in on the league for years, so it seems like that's set for now, and any growing pains of expansion teams seem to not be a concern of the guys who want in.

Incidentally, not all 6 guys will be joining now; we will have 2 next season and possibly another 2 in 2015 or 2016.

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Weve been at it for over 20 years, and we essentially do option B and to be honest, with only 5 keepers if they manage right its not impossible they can compete.

- You can do this a couple of ways:

1. Everyone submits their keepers, teams then have a 5 round expansion draft of the leftovers. If you want to give them some sort of closing the gap maybe you eliminate the $3 bump for players they take and/or give them an extra $10 in FAAB. One of the issues you have is that a $3 bump in a 275 league is pretty minimal with no end in sight, its probably not overattractive to new owners, they feel like these players are stuck on teams forever, I might reconsider to contract years myself.

2. You can do an expansion draft with only 3 protected players, when one of yours gets taken, you get to add one more keeper and so on and so forth, I think the NBA or NFL used to do their expansion this way, when we had a large expansion one year (3 teams) went from 11 owners to 14, we did this.

We have never had trouble getting new owners for our 10-keeper league, so you shouldnt have any issues getting people in a 5-keeper league, though I may look at contract years or bumping the $3 amount a bit.

The 3 protected players part - are they protected in addition to your keepers? Or do you mean the keepers themselves?

We like the lower salary bump because we don't mind having the ability to keep players for many years, even the majority of his career. It makes it fun for tracking a favorite player. We keep keeper numbers to 5, however, in order to leave talent available and prevent a team dominating before the draft even starts. We like it so far.

So when we do an expansion draft, we actually call the list protected, they are not yet your official keepers. Its usually a 3 step process.

Step 1: Teams get their official protected list, meaning these guys cant be part of the expansion draft.

Step 2: The expansion draft takes place, all players outside the protected list are eligible to be draftedere

Step 3: The owner retains the rights to all his players not drafted in the expansion draft plus his protected list, then we have a few day process before the final keeper list is due.

The reason for the protected list verus keepers is that an owner in your league may have like 9 keeper types, but he might have one of those borderline high priced superstar keepers that if there is no expansion draft, he knows he can throw back and get back maybe 2-3 bucks cheaper-expensive, one way or another its not worth keeping, but if the draft strategy is to get that guy back, he obviously needs him to be in the auction and not left vulnerable to the expansion draft. So its really to protect a guy you may want to buy back and obviously for that to happen its a situation where the difference between your 5th keeper and like 8th or 9th keeper is one you can live with if 5-6-7 go in expansion.

So its typically a 2-week process, two years ago we had a 2-team league expansion:

Draft was Saturday March 21st lets say.

Sunday March 8th the Protected List was due, I then furnished the expansion list to those guys.

Starting Monday or Tuesday via Text between me and those two, we had the expansion draft.

Done by Thursday at the latest, I publish the results of the expansion draft online (actually I was updating as it happened)

Once the expansion draft is over, teams retain the rights to all the players they didnt protect who werent taken in expansion draft and by Sunday March 15th Midnight, official keeper list is due and protected players can be substituted for players on the roster who werent taken in expansion draft OR you may just choose to go with less keepers and throw a guy back but you still got up to whatever number of keepers your league has as protections.

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Thanks, man! That is very helpful. You addressed some concerns I had considered but hadn't stated (about the players you want to throw back into the draft). Great ideas, I will be pitching some facets of that plan to the guys.

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I think option B is the way to go: allow people to keep unkept players. This obviously works best if prices or draft round is attached to players. If it is an auction league, I think a $3 bump per year is just going to make things ridiculously slow. I would strongly suggest $5 to create more turnover.

Agree.

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