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Old 03-14-2015, 08:16 PM   #1
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Player Progression Questions

So I discovered this game and started playing it about a month ago. I'm in about year five of a fictional league, and have mostly loved it so far. However, I have run into a few issues that are affecting my enjoyment of it because it seems unrealistic. Specifically:

- I started looking at the previous amateur draft logs for my league and it confused me because almost all of the players drafted in Round 1 at least three years ago are pretty good and most are in the MLB. Looking back through some historical first rounds on Baseball Reference shows that in any given draft only about half of the first rounders even make it to the big show, and many fewer do so within three years. This is starting to affect my enjoyment of the game since things seem to progress so linearly. I don't want to know that the teams with a top 10 pick will always get a good player and that seems to be the case now. I have found these issues to manifest themselves in both my fictional league and another MLB quick start that I had done as well. All of my development, aging and TCR settings were set to default, but I recently reduced the development speed and increased the TCR. I have done a bunch of research and some people advocate higher TCR, but won't that mean that I have to accept a lot more 13th rounders becoming MLB players as well? I just want to model the most realistic drafted player progression as possible.

- It seems like there are too many star / superstar players and not enough "league average" type guys (by OSA player rating). At any given time there are a whole bunch of 70 - 80 OSA rated players (out of 80), and not enough 50ish (league average) players. Obviously, most of the MLB is made up of league average type players but that does not seem to be reflected in OOTP. This particularly manifests itself in Relievers, which has more highly-rated players than any other, which doesn't seem realistic to me. Maybe some relieves should be rated highly, but their ratings should be highly variable between seasons (and within each season) to more accurately reflect reality. Are there some settings that I could change to make the talent distribution tend more towards the fat part of the bell curve for major leaguers?

- I just had an offseason where I found it incredibly easy to sign two very good, All Star / MVP level players.

1) I signed a 31 year old left fielder with a 78 OSA rating that is Extremely Popular and four-time All Star (in the five seasons my league has been in existence) for three years at $3.8MM/year. He was injured at the time I signed him and had missed almost the whole prior season, but on Opening Day he is healthy again.

2) I also signed a 75 OSA rated Starting Pitcher for $2.8MM/year for three years. This guy was also 31 years old and Extremely Popular, in addition to being a two time Cy Young winner and a three time all star. He tore his flexor tendon in the prior year and will be out for the first three months of the season, but there's no way that a pitcher in that situation would sign a contract like that. Can you imagine Darvish becoming a free agent next year and getting a contract like that even after his injury? No way. He would still get a rich contract, even if it was a one year deal for $15MMish.

Note that the median team payroll is $115MM, and both of these players were both injured at the time I signed them. I was initially excited to get both of them but eventually the lack of realism set in with me and now I haven't played in over a week because it bothered me so much. I set the AI ratings set at 55 / 30 / 10 / 5 to try to address this issue but have not had time to see how it works.

Any help the community can provide would be great. I am just looking for the most realistic experience possible, and these things are in danger of making me not buy the upcoming version.
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Old 03-15-2015, 12:28 AM   #2
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Re: Player Progression

Glad to see you starting to like the game, I found myself turning to this game more over any other due to its realism and depth. I'll start by saying that its always going to be hard to completely replicate real life, but these guys have done it better than any other game I've ever played.

1. You're right looking at TCR, I personally don't touch development much, but it doesn't hurt to experiment. From my understanding of reading the forums and my own experimentation, TCR determines the range a player may develop or produce on the field. The higher TCR the more randomness there will be in your player development. I've used 150 the most, and it gives me what I'm looking for, a good group of successful picks as well as busts at the top of draft and some surprises coming from the later rounds. Good example I can think of was the case of Bruce Maxwell(current prospect in A's org.) in a White Sox save I had once. I traded for Maxwell in my first year as filler to a larger deal, he was a low rated prospect(25-35 out of 80 iirc), but I thought he might turn into my starting catcher. He hit the major leagues the next year, and turned into one of the best catchers in the game, posted something like .340 one season, and he spent his entire career with me, his number ended up retired. So, I would just test different settings, the more you play the more you'll be able to find what your looking for.

2. Personally I don't pay much attention to the overall rating distribution, the best players usually present themselves when I dive into stats, TCR will also allow for more randomness in good players producing better or worse, this is more present in the earlier years(ages 20-30) and players become much more consistent as they enter the later years of their careers. As for the ratings between positions, 15 has their ratings determined by talent at the position, however, there is a setting under the global settings I believe, that will change the ratings evaluation to all positions, it should be worded similarly and easy to find.

3. The game will always have exploits and you probably found one I've seen before. If an injured free agent is still available around spring training, you'll likely be able to sign them for cheap, the $ may be lower than real life in some cases, but its not far off(Look at Beachy signing for cheap with the Dodgers while he rehabs, he's no Cy Young winner, but if he was healthier he'd be getting more money at this point.)
AI ratings may have some effect on this, but I've never looked for it, it will determine a lot when making trades and teams willingness to pay for players based on good seasons rather than ratings, lowering the emphasize on ratings and more on stats may help you get to where you want, but this too will take a lot of experimentation, I usually use something around 30/50/15/5 if you want a place to start.
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Old 03-16-2015, 09:29 AM   #3
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Thanks, Blue! It's a bummer that there are exploits that players can find, but it does seem like the developers are trying to close that loop with the individual player valuation feature in this new version. Hopefully that will clear it up
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