American Baseball League Rules (Short Version)
The American Baseball League (ABL) is NOT a fantasy sports league. It is a simulation baseball league. There are coaches, owners, and players just like a real baseball organization, however everything is simulated using OOTP6. You are not required to own the game or pay any money at any time; though a donation is appreciated as the league’s commissioner spends anywhere from 30-70 hours a week on the website, message board and league file. The American Baseball League is in no way affiliated with the MLB or any other baseball organization. The league was originally 16 teams strong, but soon after implemented plans to expand by 4 teams every other offseason.
Your Role in the League
Your goal is to create a perennial all-star that can lead his team to the championship. You can do so by filling out the player form. The player’s ratings are determined by the bio you submit. You need to give accomplishments and spend some time on it or your player will be rated poorly. The ratings you receive determine how good your player can become. There are two sets of ratings for each player, Overall & Talent.
The overall ratings are how your player will perform currently. Most created players will have overall ratings that will cause them to be put in the minors for a season or part of a season. Your goal is to earn reward points and redeem them to improve your player so that he will perform better and move up to the big leagues. Most active members will earn anywhere between 30 and 200 reward points per season. The more you earn the faster your player will reach the big leagues and the more notoriety he’ll receive. Your player’s ratings can also improve on their own with the game engine, which will help your player reach his talents faster.
You can only improve your player’s overall ratings up to the other type of rating, the talent rating. A player’s talent ratings represent how good he can become. They are determined by the bio you submit. Once your player has reached his talent ratings, you can create a second (or more) player. The same goes for when your player turns 26 years old.
If you create a player in the offseason, he will most likely be put in the MCP (Member Created Player) Draft. Which is a single round specifically for the players created by new members (and/or members who have earned the right to create a second player) to be distributed to the teams in the league.
If you create a player during the season (or in the offseason, but after the MCP Draft) he will become a free agent. You can sign him with any team in the league, so long as you don’t coach for them. In order for your player to remain in the league past your first season you will have to earn 10 reward points. You’ll need at least 5 in the second season.
If at any time during your player’s career he becomes a free agent you control who he can sign with, provided you’ve been active with the player.
As a coach, your goal is to move up to ownership. It starts with you filling out the coach’s form and then going on to the message board and posting that you’re looking for a job in the general section (first one on the page). In order to become a coach, you need one of the owners of the league to sign you as their coach. You should include a little bit about yourself and your contact information. If you’re active right away on the message board, you’re likely to get a job quickly.
Once you get a job, your goal is to prove you’re capable of owning. You do so by being active (posting primarily) on the message board and by earning reward points. If you do those two things, the rest will likely come naturally. You’ll also need to show you can be productive for the league and get along with other members. Once the commissioner feels you understand how the league works, and that you’re active enough to own, you’ll likely be contacted if a job is open.
As a coach your job is to work with the owner to guide the team to the title. The owner has final say over everything involving the majors and the rosters for each level, but you control the minor league lineups and rotations.
Owners have the right to fire a coach if they feel he is doing an inadequate job or if they would like to hire a new one. A coach has the right to leave their job at any time and can sign with another team if desired.
Most reward points are earned on the message board, here are the primary ways:
-The easiest way to earn reward points is by day-to-day pickem. Day-to-day pickem is a competition among members where each member selects one team for each day (hence the name) of the upcoming sim. If the team wins you score points, if the team loses you lose points off your score. If you go on a win streak the amount of points per win goes up. The full explanation is available on the rules page. Aside from day-to-day pickem during the season there are also competitions in the offseason. Other pickem competitions include: World Cup Pickem, MCP Draft Order Pickem, Playoffs Pickem & Open Cup Pickem. There is no limit to the amount of points you can earn in day-to-day pickem, but even the newest member should expect between 10-20 points if he keeps up with it.
-Next in line is the interview. You can earn between 1 and 3 points. You can come into the league and write a viable interview about your new player by simply asking yourself around 8 questions and answering with about a paragraph each for the full 3 points. Make sure you answer them yourself, however, or the responder will get the reward points. You can also interview any player in the league (provided they aren’t someone else’s MCP) for reward points as well. Most new members write an interview before their first season in the league. You can write an unlimited amount of interviews, but be warned that if they get repetitive you may lose a point or two.
-The final primary way is the article. You can earn between 1 and 5 points. Articles can be written on any topic, so long as it’s ABL-related. During the offseason and at the all-star break there are bonuses available which can push article worth to 4-10 points or even more. Before writing an article, please look back at past articles to see what’s expected. A simple 5 paragraph essay won’t get you any more than a single point. Most of the better article topics practically write themselves as you just analyze something from the league.
These are all primary ways because you can earn an unlimited amount of points with them and you can do them all whenever you want with the exception of pickem.
Other Important Ways
-Live Events. Live drafts and live play-by-plays will typically earn you between 1 and 5 points. They take place in AIM chat rooms and the more active you are in them the more points you earn. Be warned that you’ll need to show you can get along with the other members within the chat. The bulk of your reward points can be earned during the playoffs as there are usually 8 chats for up to 40 reward points. During the actual season, the only typically guaranteed play-by-plays are the all-star game and the season opener.
-Trivia. Trivia questions are put up on the message board regularly, but if you’re not active on the message board you’re not likely to beat other members to the question. The first person to respond gets the points for it (anywhere between 1 and 5), but you cannot answer twice in a row and you cannot change your answer once it has been posted.
-Assignments. It’s hard for new members to do assignments, but as you go along you’ll be able to do them. They’re usually worth between 1 and 10 points, but the important ones can be worth up to 15 points. They’re a good way to show you understand how the league works.
The full list of ways to earn reward points is available on the full rules page.
Redeeming Reward Points
Just earning reward points doesn’t automatically make your player better. You need to redeem them to the player’s ratings in order for them to improve. First you’ll need to check the Reward Points page to see how many you have. Scroll down past the team’s box and look at the list of members. The amount for your player is listed in the right-most box of your row in parenthesis after his name. The 5-main categories for each player cost 3 reward points to improve while the peripheral categories cost 2 or 5 for the most part. The full list is available on the full rules page. You can worry about it when the time comes.
How much of your time will this take up?
To be a viable player in the league all you need to do is keep up with day-to-day pickem. That’s three posts a week. That should earn you enough reward points to benefit your player (provided you redeem them) and help him progress to the majors. From there if you post in the rest of the message board when you can you’ll be fine.
To be a great player you’ll need to do more than just day-to-day, articles, interviews, and/or live events will be things you’ll need to do over time. The more you do, the faster you can create your second player and the faster your player makes it to the majors. The more you’re on the message board the easier it is.
To be a viable coach in the league you’ll need to be active on the message board and update your forms at least a few times a season. Your owner should help guide you and tell you what you need to do for the team.
To potentially own a team you’ll need to prove you’re dedicated by being active on the message board as often as possible. Show your knowledge of the sports world and gain the respect of the league at large. Earning reward points is a must as you’ll have to earn 50 every season as an owner. Writing articles and keeping up with day-to-day pickem without having to be reminded are also necessary.
During the season there are usually 3 sims per week. Each sim is 10 game days being simulated and then the results uploaded to the website. All transaction forms (the minor league rotation and lineup forms) are due by the day before a sim is to be done. The time may change each season and some weeks may have less than 3 sims in them, both depending on the commissioner’s personal schedule. All day-to-day pickem entries need to be submitted before the sim is uploaded. A reminder email is usually sent out or you’ll be instant messaged by the commissioner with a reminder. Getting things done without having to be reminded is a big plus.
The season itself usually last 6-8 weeks and the playoffs usually last around 10 days. (Real Time)
The offseason is done in the following order:
Expansion Draft (if applicable)
World Cup/Open Cup
There is usually about (or an average of) 2 weeks between each event. It can take 6-8 weeks for the full offseason.