A. LEAGUE NAME - The league will be known as the Three Rivers APBA Baseball League (hereafter 'TRABL' or 'the League')
B. REQUIRED SOFTWARE – Games are played using APBA Baseball for Windows version 5.75. Owners must update to the latest revision of the game, currently #21. Owners should also update to the latest play-by-play update, currently #4.
C. OTHER COMPUTER REQUIREMENTS - Each Team Owner must have email and Web access in order to send Franchise Files, download Commissioner Files, and read league messages.
D. OTHER PERSONAL REQUIREMENTS - In order to participate in TRABL, you must be dedicated. We do not want to have a high turnover rate among our Team Owners. TRABL is for people who enjoy playing APBA Baseball, and who enjoy the game of baseball in general. If winning is the only thing that will maintain your interest, then we ask you to please choose another league to join, because you will not be welcome here. For every winner, there will be several losers, and we must all understand and accept that.
E. HONESTY - Dishonest play will be watched for by the Commissioner and other Team Owners. One indicator of dishonest play is Home Record versus Road Record. If a team’s winning percentage for home games is drastically higher than its winning percentage for road games, this could indicate that the Team Owner is replaying some of his home losses to get wins instead. Team Owners who are obviously cheating will be dropped from the League and replaced. The decisions, opinions and actions of the Commissioner may always be questioned and discussed. But if ANYONE ever questions his honesty, integrity, or intent, they will be removed from the league.
F. QUITTING - If an owner quits, his team will be controlled by the Commissioner or his designee until a replacement is found.
G. DUES – There are no league dues, per se’, however the league’s draft app is a paid service. League members will be prohibited from participating in the draft unless they have paid five dollars to the commissioner.
II. LEAGUE FORMAT AND RULES
A. STRUCTURE - TRABL will consist of two leagues and each league will consist of two divisions. Each division will contain six teams. Division winners will play in a best-of-seven game playoff series to determine league champions. League champions will play a seven-game World. The playoff disks will be set up using current AIM status, and there will be one rest day between each round of the playoffs. The following tie-breakers will be used to resolve any ties for home-field advantage:
1. Head to head record (better record gets home field)
2. Divisional records (better record gets home field)
3. Run differential (better +/- gets home field)
B. TEAM NAMES - Team Owners are encouraged to be creative in choosing names for their teams, while remaining within the following guidelines:
1. All team names must consist of a city or state and a nickname.
2. Teams are encouraged to choose a nickname that is not currently in use by any existing professional sports team.
3. No team city or nickname may be the same as any other team city or nickname in the League.
4. Team names will be granted on a first-submitted, first-approved basis.
C. INTERLEAGUE PLAY - There will be no interleague play. All games played by a team will be played against the other teams in the same league. (This is a rule that will never change and will never be voted on.)
D. WILD-CARD TEAMS - There will be no wild-card teams in the post-season. Only division winners will participate in the post-season. (This is a rule that will never change and will never be voted on.)
E. DESIGNATED HITTER - The Designated Hitter rule will not be used. Pitchers must bat for all teams in both leagues. (This is a rule that will never change and will never be voted on.)
A. ROSTERS - Each team will draft a full roster of 46 players. Before Opening Day, each team will reduce its roster to a 26-man active roster. Every team must have a minimum of ten pitchers on their Active Roster at all times. They must also have a minimum of 5 Starting Pitchers on their Active Roster at all times.
B. ROSTER MOVES - Players may be moved between the farm roster to the active roster between (not during) series. Owners are to make their own roster moves, and make sure they have exactly 26 players on their Active Roster at all times, with the rest of their players on their Farm Roster at all times. After September 1 (LM calendar date), active rosters may be expanded up to 34 players.
C. CONTINUOUS OWNERSHIP - Teams retain the rights to all players on their roster, though owners may release players before the season draft. Players who did not appear in the Major Leagues during a season cannot play in TRABL the next year, though teams may retain ownership of those players. Such players will be added to the disk with "zz" before their last name. Like any carded players, "ZZ" players must remain on a TRABL roster for the season once Phase III is complete.
D. ELIGIBLE PLAYERS - Only players who appear on the current official APBA season disk are eligible to be drafted.
E. LEAGUE DRAFT - The draft will be held after the Major League Baseball season ends, and before the new season disk is released, near December 1st. Tie breakers for draft position: 1. Head to head record (worse record gets higher slot); 2. Divisional records (worse record gets higher slot); 3. Run differential (worse +/- gets higher slot)
1. Teams may make pre-draft cuts. Once a cut is announced, it is final.
2. The draft order will be determined by the records of the teams in the previous season. The team with the worst record in the previous season will draft first, followed by the team with the second-worst record, etc., until the last four picks. The World Series Champion drafts last, and the World Series loser will draft next-to-last. The division winners that did not advance to the World Series will draft 21st and 22th, with the team with the worse record picking 21st.
3. The draft will start early in December, with a firm date to be announced as early as possible each year. The time limit is 24 hours for first-round picks and eight hours for picks in subsequent rounds. The commissioner may shorten the clock to four hours at his discretion in later rounds. If a team is skipped for consecutive rounds and the clock expires on its third pick they team’s draft status will be set as ‘auto-skip.’ They will be skipped until they are catch up on the draft app.
4. The rookie draft will consist of 15 rounds for all teams, using the league’s official draft application. Teams may pass selections at any time after reaching 46 players. Teams which have less than 46 players at the end of 15 rounds will continue to draft via e-mail until they have 46 players.
5. Once the cuts have been made and the official TRABL disk has been created and distributed, each team will be allowed to release some players and add an equal number of players from the draft pool. This ‘Phase III Draft’ will help teams address specific needs regarding PR and MBF. The order will be the same as the regular draft. Teams drafting in slots 1-5 can exchange up to five players each; teams in slots 6-10 can swap four players; teams in slots 11-15 can swap three players; teams in slots 16-20 can swap two players; and teams in slots 21-24 can swap one player.
F. UNDRAFTED PLAYERS - All players who are not drafted may not be used by any team during the current season, except as outlined in Section V.C.
IV. PLAYER USAGE LIMITATIONS
A. PLAYER USAGE – League Manager’s AIM setting shall be set to ‘Fatigue Only.’ The League will use certain AIM stolen base modifications in controlling player usage to maintain more realistic results. The following modifications will be made to the season disk when a player surpasses 125% of his real-life SB attempts:
1. Change SB to 0.
2. Change CS to 0.
3. Change SA rating to ‘N.’
4. Change SS rating to 0.
B. POSITION ELIGIBILITY - Players may play any position at which they are rated. Players may only play out of position in cases of injury or ejection. Teams must have at least 1100 PR at each position on the 46-man roster. Teams must have a minimum of 6,750 MaxBF on the 46-man roster
C. INNOCUOUS PLAYERS - TRABL will enable the PR930 option. There may be instances where LM will not automatically change a player with an OPS < .600 to a PR930. In this case, that player will manually be given a PR930 rating - unless his rating (normalized to SF=100) is greater than 930/100. The player’s owner is responsible for notifying the league that one of his players needs to be manually adjusted to PR930. This must be done prior to opening day. We will create innocuous pitchers by allowing all grade 1 and 2 face at least 1000 batters if they do not already have >= 1000 MBF.
D. PRE-SEASON RATINGS CHANGES - Before the season, the following changes will be made to player ratings:
1. All grade 1 and grade 2
pitchers who have an MBF (Maximum Batters Faced) rating below 1000 will have
that rating increased to 1000. These pitchers will also have their Injury
Rating (J-factor) set to 2 (if not 0 or 1) and Durability Rating (Q-factor) set
to 2 (if not 0 or 1).
2. Players with SF<100 will have their SF adjusted to 100 (with accompanying increase in PR) by the pro-rating process in League Manager. Owners may also make any position played by a player his primary position.
3. Since some Micromanagers choose their closers based upon real-life save totals rather than pitching grade, each Team Owner will be allowed to change the real-life save totals for his relief pitchers. This will ensure that our bullpens are used the way we want them to be used when our teams are on the road. These changes will be made by the Commissioner.
E. POSITION PLAYERS PITCHING –
1. In any season where a player has more than 50 PA as a position player and either A) makes at least one pitcher start, or B) pitches at least ten innings in relief; his primary position will be a field position. Such a player is hereafter referred to as an ‘Ohtani.’
2. In any season where an Ohtani does not play any field position (by MLB stats, not rating on disk), he is assigned a primary field position with no secondary positions. It will be his primary position (by defensive innings) for the most recent season in which he played the field. He will get the minimum rating at the position, with an arm strength of 30. If he has not played a field position in the major leagues, this will be his primary position during the previous season from Japan or the Minor Leagues.
3. AIM will govern his fatigue as a batter.
4. The TRABL Disk Creator will establish the MaxBF that the Ohtani would be assigned if he were governed as a pitcher and report that to the league before the season. When he reaches his MBF limit, the Ohtani’s pitcher ratings are removed.
5. The responsibility of tracking an Ohtani’s batters faced falls to his owner. StatMaster tracks batters faced, though you have to run a custom report for your team to find it.
6. An Ohtani may only be used as a starter, and must have at least four rest days between starts. When an Ohtani arises who is used primarily as a reliever, the league will promulgate rules to address that.
7. Position players who are used as occasional pitchers will be limited to their real-life pitching appearances plus one, after which their pitching ratings will be removed. In the spirit of the real-life use of position players pitching, it is expected TRABL owners will only use field players as pitchers in blowout games.
V. PLAYER MOVEMENT
A. TRADES - Trades shall be governed by the following rules:
1. The trade deadline is 11pm ET (or whatever time Dave Blackburn sets for FFs) July 31st, whenever July 31st is the due date for FFs for the current series. When July 31st falls mid-series, the trade deadline will be 11pm ET on the date that current series ends.
2. No trades may be made after the deadline. Any player may be traded during the trading period. The Commissioner reserves the right to veto any trade that does not appear fair.
3. If any League member feels an approved trade should be reviewed, he can voice his concerns to the Commissioner. If the Commissioner feels his concerns are justified, the trade will be put up for a vote. No teams in the divisions of the teams involved in the trade may vote. For example, if both teams in the trade were in the same division, the teams in the other three divisions will vote. If the teams involved in the trade were in different divisions, the teams in the other two divisions will vote. A 75% majority will be needed to overturn any disputed trades.
4. No trade may put a team over or under the 46-man Roster limit.
B. TRADING DRAFT PICKS – Draft picks may be traded once the Phase III draft is announced complete and only during open trading periods. No picks for drafts beyond the upcoming draft may be traded.
C. EMERGENCY CLAIMS - If a team needs to pick up a free agent during the season in order to fill a NEED on his team for the player (needs AB at a certain position or innings on his staff), he must notify the commissioner. After the commissioner approves, the player can pick up said free agent, but he must drop a player from his roster to make room for the free agent (no zz's can be dropped). This free agent may not be traded. At the end of the season, the free agent must be returned to the pool and the player dropped remains in the pool as well.
VI. PLAYING THE GAMES
A. PLAYING – Owners are responsible for playing their teams’ home games, and is responsible for making sure their teams are prepared to play on the road. This includes providing lineups, pitching rotations, micromanager choices, and other instructions. If this information is not provided, the home team manager will use his best judgement in making all decisions for the visiting team.
B. RAIN - All games are to be played in 'domed' stadiums. Franchise Files which contain a rained-out game will not be accepted.
C. APPROVED MICROMANAGERS - Any freely-available micromanager who is designed to manage using AIM may be used. Pay micromanagers may be used, but only if the home team playing the series has that micromanager. If not, the road team must choose a free micromanager to run his team for that series.
D. SERIES DEADLINES: Deadlines will be strictly enforced. The current TRABL Filemeister is Dave Blackburn. Files must be submitted to the Filemeister either via direct e-mail or by uploading it to the Files section of the groups.io site. Messages sent only to firstname.lastname@example.org do not qualify, nor do e-mails received with no F-File attached. Deadlines for each week of play will be as follows (though the Filemeister may amend these at his discretion):
1. Sunday, 11pm ET: Home teams must have their Franchise Files containing weekend series results submitted to the Filemeister.
2. Monday, 9am ET: Filemeister will post the Results Commissioner File for the weekend series. Visiting teams have 24 hours to post an updated F-File to groups.io for that series. If the visiting team has no changes to make, please let the home team know ASAP so they can play their games earlier. If no F-File is posted after 24 hours, home teams should play the series without loading a new F-File for the visiting team.
3. Thursday, 11pm ET: Home teams must have their Franchise Files containing mid-week series results submitted to the Filemeister.
4. Friday, 9am ET: Filemeister will post the Results Commissioner File for the mid-week series. Visiting teams have 24 hours to post an updated F-File to groups.io for that series. If the visiting team has no changes to make, please let the home team know ASAP so they can play their games earlier. If no F-File is posted after 24 hours, home teams should play the series without loading a new F-File for the visiting team.
E. PENALTIES - If a Team Owner consistently misses deadlines, penalties will be assessed according to the following schedule:
1. Third deadline missed: The Team Owner will forfeit a 3rd round pick in the following year’s draft.
2. Fourth deadline missed: The Team Owner will forfeit a 2nd round pick in the following year’s draft, in addition to the previously forfeited 3rd round pick.
3. Fifth deadline missed: The Team Owner will be dropped from the League and replaced.
4. When an owner is replaced, previously forfeited draft picks will be reinstated to the team.
5. If a team trades their 3rd-round pick before the end of the season and they reach that penalty level (three penalties), the penalty will be the loss of their 2nd-round pick instead. If a team trades their 2nd-round pick before the end of the season and they reach that penalty level (four penalties), the penalty will be the loss of their 1st-round pick instead. If a team trades their 1st-round pick in addition to their 2nd-round pick and reaches the level that would normally cost them their 2nd-round pick, the penalty will be the loss of their franchise.
Modified the following sections to match previously approved rule changes: I.B; III.C; III.E.3; IV.D.2; IV.A; IV.E; VI.D.
Clarified language in the following sections: I.F; V.A.2; III.D; III.E; III.E.4; IV.B; IV.C; V.A.2; V.A.4; V.C; VI.E.4.
Deleted obsolete sections: III.G; IV.B.1; IV.B.2; IV.E; VI.F; VI.G.
Added sections IV.E.; I.G.
Modified section III.E.4 to clarify that teams will draft to 46.