Developer Chat

Hardball Dynasty


Friday, September 21, 2007

1:00 PM - 3:00 PM EST

The LIVE portion of this chat will begin on

Friday, September 21, 2007 at 1:00 PM EST.

Hello! Looks like we have several questions, lets get rolling!

Where do we stand on being able to access player stats from past seasons under the various team pages, i.e. I click on another team, click stats, then change the season? (bigyunit - Hall of Famer - 1:07 PM)

In the interest of site performance we have yet to integrate an efficient way of handling this. Once we figure out the best way to do it without a huge hit to site performance we will try to add it in.

Any progress on the Hall of Fame? Or at least an idea of what the process will look like? (bigyunit - Hall of Famer - 1:09 PM)

We haven't begun development on the HOF yet, we are exploring ways to make it interactive between worlds as well as having something world specific. Since the worlds are still relatively young we are holding off on this while we focus on some other key improvements.

hi. others have suggested this, and i think it's a great idea for your addicted users. how about some marker on the world page that shows which worlds are currently simming? this would give us an idea of how long we have to wait for results, and it would probably cut down on the "hey, my league hasn't simmed yet!" tickets. similarly, i'd love some indication that the half-cycles (7a, 3p, 11p) have run, since sometimes they go by without any indication. thanks! (schedule1 - Hall of Famer - 1:13 PM)

We don't have any plans to implement a real time counter at this time. We have upgraded our web servers which has produced noticeable results in site performance and simulation times.

Are there going to be any injuries or lost durability points in the All Star Game now that it is being simulated? Also, say my pitcher pitches during the game. Will his stamina go down and inhibit him from playing in the first game back from the break? (div1991 - Pro - 1:16 PM)

There are no injuries or fatigue hits during the simulation of the All Star Game, Futures Game, or Home Run Derby.

is it better to have a pitch with a bad rating or not have that pitch at all? Is 80 75 12 12 0 better tham 80 75 0 0 0? (WiredTiger - Hall of Famer - 1:21 PM)

The more pitches a pitcher has the harder it is for the batter to guess what pitch will be thrown next. However, very bad pitches, like the one you gave as an example, would be better off getting dropped. On the flip side, if that pitch is around 50 it would be more beneficial for that pitch to be thrown.

Does making the MinL playoffs in any way help player development? (trooperbud - Rookie - 1:22 PM)

Minor league teams that make the playoffs will see a slight boost in development due to the fact that they are playing in more games than those teams who do not make the playoffs.

I get that it would put an additional strain on the HBD system, but 3 days to get ready for the draft is really tight. Any chance of going to 7 days? Maybe implement an export/import feature so every single draft order change does not have to be stored? (trooperbud - Rookie - 1:25 PM)

This is something we will look into, but I can't promise we will go to this format. As for importing and exporting this is not something we are currently interested in. We would rather not introduce third party software into the product.

Any chance of changing the draft so that picks 1-10 are not all but guaranteed stars, if not superstars? I think making draft picks more like the real world would also make free agency more realistic. There is a strong disincentive to signing a Type A FA if I have a top 10 draft pick, because I know I'm giving up a comparable player (in a few years). In the real world, much less chance my top 10 draft pick becomes a star. (trooperbud - Rookie - 1:27 PM)

We don't believe that you are guaranteed a star player if you draft in the top 10. While the player may have great projected ratings several different events can deter that player from reaching them, mainly a career ending injury or an early retirement.

Why are you not able to view/edit the Lineup and Pitching Staff Pages for your minor league teams in the pre-season? (eclipse33 - Hall of Famer - 1:30 PM)

The reason we do not allow this is because several players from the minor league team come up for Spring Training thus leaving the minor league teams vacant at that point. During the off-season you only have to manage one team that can contain 70 players. To give you some extra time to get your minor league lineups and pitching staffs in order we added a full day of preparation time after Spring Training.

Great site! Very well thought out. I like the new section on the World Office page to show various news and stats but don’t like it’s location. I would prefer that it be below my team’s scores so I can see them without scrolling down . If you need more vertical room, why not put the top info (Trade proposals, Trade chats, etc.) into two columns at the top (like the rest of the page) and free up 3 lines or so. (cp49 - Hall of Famer - 1:35 PM)

Thanks! This has been requested by several users, the way the page is currently structured it only made sense to use what we already had in place. If you take notice this is where all of the information goes regarding current points in the schedule, off days, etc...

is there anything planned in the future that will allow you to choose which players have the green light on stealing and which do not as opposed to a team setting? (a3morey - Hall of Famer - 1:38 PM)

Since there are so many players in HBD we can't include individual player settings.

Is there any future plans to make the site move accessible by devices that have web access, such as the iPhone , blackberry etc. In accessible I am more user friendly to the device user such as using no frames on a page so a user can zoom in to certain content. Thx. (oab2 - Hall of Famer - 1:41 PM)

This is definitely an area we would like to explore and I think there is a high demand for it. I would imagine we would be rolling something out to accommodate mobile user's in the distant future.

Any chance we will see International Prospects who show up older and fully developed ala Ichiro, Dice K, Matsui or any of the relivers who come and dominate. It would be a neat wrinkle in the process. (BrianCampos - Hall of Famer - 1:45 PM)

We already have ML ready IPs out there. They are rare but they do exist.

It’s disappointing to be a brand new owner in a league of mostly experienced players and have to learn through mistakes how to do the drafts, waivers, evaluate players, etc. I’ve already put myself well behind other teams by mistakes and others may have done worse, left the game and a horrible, unattractive team to try to get someone else to clean up. Have you considered having short (50 games?) 1-season leagues for new players so they learn some basics and don’t start at such a disadvantage? (cp49 - Hall of Famer - 1:45 PM)

The current implementation of the game doesn't allow for this. The best advice I can give new owner's is to ask a lot of questions. The forums are a great resource for information, along with the help and world chat. There are a lot of great owner's out there who would be happy to share their knowledge of the game with you.

The players who we have assigned to each level at the beginning of a world and after the draft make the minimum for that level, however, all MiL FA's sign for $54k. Can an adjustment be made to make the initial salary hit be the Rookie League salary of $8k, adjusting to the appropriate $ after they are assigned? (randallball - Hall of Famer - 1:46 PM)

This is something we are hoping to add soon.

I'm sure this has been asked, but haven't seen it answered....Any chance of getting rid of the 3 game opening series and expanding it to 5? I have not seen one person object to this idea in the forums or in worlds. Thanks. (ccook19 - Pro - 1:51 PM)

I think that this is something that we would like to see in the game also.

Does team prestige play into a Free Agent's decision if 2+ teams offer similar contracts, or is it strictly $? (randallball - Hall of Famer - 1:51 PM)

There are a lot of factors that play into the negotiation process. Playoff contention and team performance play a big part along with potential playing time.

Hey. Are you giving us us the SLB-like ability to set numerous players at once, in the GM Roster page (and especially not not have to slog through a redundant confirmation page per player, per setting) and the manager's Player Settings page. We spend/waste a lot of time there -- I'd venture to say it keeps some of us from running another organization than we do. (ArlenWilliam - Hall of Famer - 1:53 PM)

We see the demand for this feature and we would like to see it get out there soon. It is definitely something we want to have in the game.

Will a good - great PC catcher help to "encourage" a pitcher to drop a poor pitch because that pitch won't be called as often? (randallball - Hall of Famer - 1:56 PM)

Dropping pitches is strictly determined by the pitching coach.

Will we ever see a feature where we can rehire coaches to a level higher than they are demanding? E.g., a HiA Bench Coach who wants to be rehired as an AA coach but has skills that place him in the range of being an AAA coach. (Wildcard88 - Hall of Famer - 1:59 PM)

We are going to be looking at the coach hiring process soon. We have an extensive list of features that we will be discussing and this is currently on that list.

One of my biggest issues with HBD is the generally inaccurate position ratings of players in the Amateur Draft. I constantly get 2B with max potential range of 65 and glove of 40 for example. I don't mean in the low rounds either, these are 1-5 round picks. Any chance of making the ratings match the position? (Weena - Hall of Famer - 2:05 PM)

The ratings that you see are based on your scouting budgets, the more you spend in your scouting budget the more accurate they will be.

Does one player's makeup affect any other players on the team? IE bad apples...or great team player. (TheJester74 - Hall of Famer - 2:06 PM)

We have plans to incorporate a "Veteran Presence" in the club house and I think that this will incorporate all of the things that you are requesting.

Is the possibility of offering multi years contracts to coaches part of the list of fetures you will be discussing ? (wolvie14 - Hall of Famer - 2:07 PM)

This is also on the list and is up for internal discussion.

Any chance of stretching out the draft? I'd like to see what I got from Round 1 and 1S on the first day, then 2-3 the next day, then 4-9, then 10-25. If I knew what I got in Round 1/1S, it'd affect what I'd go for in rounds 2 or 3. (Bribar - Hall of Famer - 2:09 PM)

Since the amateur draft is such an intensive process we don't have any plans on making it more drawn out.

"The number of positions you see is determined by your budget (high school/college) and your targets and weights." Does this mean that if you set your targets & weights before the draft class is visible, it will affect what type of players you see? For example, if I set CF to 10 & 1B to 0 before my draft class is visible, does that mean that I'll see almost every available CF'er & almost no 1B'man? (klouvan2 - Rookie - 2:12 PM)

What your example will dictate is that you will see a lot more center fielders and a lot less first basemen. You will never be able to see every player in the draft. The more you budget in scouting for the draft the better your chances of seeing more great talent.

At the ML level what do bench coaches affect? (WiredTiger - Hall of Famer - 2:15 PM)

Bench coaches at the ML level will slightly improve player's across a wide spectrum or ratings. They have a hand in all of the major ratings not to mention they also take over when you get ejected. They have a more significant impact at the minor league level but they are still very important at the Big League level.

Some aspects of the game have vocal sides on each side of a topic, for instance injuries. Some say not enough like real life, other say if ML could do away with injuries they would so why deal with it. Any chance there will ever be leagues that have different rules/engine variations? Is it even possible? (TheJester74 - Hall of Famer - 2:17 PM)

At this time we don't have any plans to incorporate "Themes" like SLB.

When free agents decide which offer to accept, what is the cash value of a teams performanec, playing time, etc? How big an advantage do good teams have? (baldric - Hall of Famer - 2:19 PM)

There isn't a huge advantage but it definitely makes a difference.

Is the quality (or complete lack there of) of the bottom 1/4 of the draft anything that you plan to review? (randallball - Hall of Famer - 2:23 PM)

This was the main reason we implemented Diamonds in the Rough. It gives those draft picks a shot at actually becoming Major League caliber players.

i know this is more of a personal outlook thing, but there have been multiple occurances of trades being vetoed that involve a player being traded for essentially cash. some people think you should be able to 'buy/sell' players in this fashion because players are assets. was this ability ever considered when allowing cash to be included in trades? do you guys feel this is appropriate as long as the trading parties are both content with the deal? (sergei91 - Hall of Famer - 2:24 PM)

The vetoing process is something that we included to give other owner's in the world a say in what goes on. If a world vetoes a trade my advice would be to ask the other owner's why they vetoed it and what you can do to get it through.

Is there any chance of adding to the rules of conduct that running a 0(0) pitching staff at any level is considered unacceptable? I'm now in a World where the COMMISSIONER ran a 0(0) staff in the majors! (Bribar - Hall of Famer - 2:26 PM)

We don't have any plans of making this against our Terms of Use as the way you run your franchise is completely up to you. If the world is against it, let the other owner know.

I have had defensive success playing some players in positions where their ratings suggest that they would not succeed - is there a heirarchy of importance of defensive ratings for each position - i.e. arm accuracy for 3B, range for CF, etc? (randallball - Hall of Famer - 2:31 PM)

This is displayed on the Position Assignment popup in the GMs office and the Player Settings pages. That popup page will show you the ML averages for player's at every position. Below are some guidelines: SS - range, accuracy, glove 2B - glove, range, accuracy 3B - glove, arm, accuracy CF - range, glove RF - arm, accuracy LF - range, glove

With regards to your answer above on players being hurt defensively if they can't play a position well - how does this impact developing SS for example - who also can't play SS well yet? (bigyunit - Hall of Famer - 2:33 PM)

If that player is capable to play the position at some time in his career he will not be hurt by it. I'm assuming you are suggesting a minor leaguer here and we definitely account for that level of play. So a SS at Low A can get by making some errors and poor plays because he hasn't reached his full potential yet.

I’m intrigued by nagging injuries, which would not necessarily result in DL time, but players would experience a temporary ratings hit and an increased risk of more serious injury. These injuries could temporarily force a player into another role while still allowing him to contribute. Is this feasible or desirable? (travisg - Hall of Famer - 2:34 PM)

I don't know if it is desirable but we already account for this. When a player gets injured, based on his age and severity of the injury he can see his health rating go down which in turn will cause him to have more injuries down the line.

Has the engine changed recently regarding strikeouts? It appears to me that something has changed, but not a crude less/more tweak. (travisg - Hall of Famer - 2:35 PM)

Nothing has changed in regards to K rates.

Any chance for RSS feeds for game results? (bjb2378 - Hall of Famer - 2:36 PM)

We have yet to discuss this but there seems to be some demand for it. We'll see what we can do.

We would like to have something along these lines but performance wise it is not feasible at this time. ( Moderator - 2:37 PM)

will there be a future feature that has career breakdowns vs. particular opponents, both as franchises and individual player matchups? (sergei91 - Hall of Famer - 2:38 PM)

Hit the wrong button sorry Sergei: We would like to have something along these lines but performance wise it is not feasible at this time.

How do free agents evaluate potential playing time? (baldric - Hall of Famer - 2:40 PM)

Free agents will look at how many players can play his position and what specific positions he can play and then evaluate how much time he could reasonable expect to play.

What factors go into a pitcher dropping a bad pitch from his repertoire? (tecwrg - Hall of Famer - 2:42 PM)

Mainly poor ratings. If it would be more beneficial for that pitcher to drop that pitch the pitching coach can get him to drop it.

i have tried a variety of different draft settings with regards to starting pitchers, yet the system still always puts pitchers with terrible splits or pitches near the top and i have to manually adjust. why? (bigyunit - Hall of Famer - 2:43 PM)

I would suggest trying to target a specific type of pitcher such as a power pitcher or finesse pitcher.

Does the makeup rating effect a players performance during a high pressure situation? For example a closer who has the winning run on base? (brewsbrother - Hall of Famer - 2:46 PM)

Currently, it does not affect player performance in high pressure situations.

is there any reason for the occasional terrible season by a star player? or is it just random like in MLB? every season i seem to have one young star player whose ratings continue to rise have an absolutely abysmal season. (bigyunit - Hall of Famer - 2:48 PM)

It's really just a random occurrence which I think models real life quite closely. Any player can have a great season and any player can have a terrible season.

thanks for taking my earlier question, but what about the second part of it... would it be possible to add some indication in the world that a half-cycle (7a, 3p, 11p) has run in a given world? thanks. (schedule1 - Hall of Famer - 2:49 PM)

Sorry about that, we don't want to include more than what we have to in the schedule so for now we will not be indicating when that finishes.

Is there any plan to allow users to manually change the color of their team hats? I know I am one who thinks the all white hats are kind of goofy. (bigal888 - Hall of Famer - 2:50 PM)

We don't have any plans for color customizations at this time.

Does the patience rating have any relevance to in-game performance? (travisg - Hall of Famer - 2:53 PM)

Patience only plays a role in a player's ability to deal with adversity following demotions, injuries and lack of promotions. It doesn't play a role in performance.

I know that this could be abused pretty easily, but has there been any thought of adding a 'tired arm' injury if someone runs pitchers out @ 0(0) too often? It could potentially save an abandoned team. (randallball - Hall of Famer - 2:56 PM)

Pitching at 0% will increase the chances that a pitcher will suffer a serious injury.

What next update is the staff most excited about? (Besides programming themselves an extra vacation day) (TheJester74 - Hall of Famer - 3:03 PM)

Saved this one for last: While I can't speak for tzent I can honestly say that I am most excited about the Fall Leagues and revamping the coach hiring process. I'm also really excited about the HOF even though it is still a long ways off.

How is it determined when a pitcher is a starter or a reliever in the amateur draft? Are there specific cutoffs in the ratings for durability and stamina, and if so, what are they? (psychoch - Hall of Famer - 4:40 PM)

Durability and stamina dictate what role a pitcher should be in. High stamina and low durability are traits of a starting pitcher and high durability and low stamina are traits of a relief pitcher. There are many, many combinations in between that allow for lots of different role possibilities.

There was a tease about the Arizona Fall League at the end of the last release note (as a joke I'm sure). But seriously, have you considered adding the option for "off season" programs such as the AFL or the Dominican league where we could assign players for more work in the offseason to promote development? Obviously there would (and should) be an injury risk, but this is a useful tool for teams. (randallball - Hall of Famer - 4:42 PM)

We definitely want to add the AFL as a feature for those owners who are not in contention for the playoffs. It will give them something else to do and will also help speed development for those on track for the big leagues. Injury risk will always be a part, of course.

Is a player's defensive improvement dictated by his position? For example, will a player who projects 95s across the board defensively improve faster (or come closer to his projections) playing shortstop than he would if he played left field? It seems there is a ceiling on improvement of certain ratings at certain positions. (examinerebb - Hall of Famer - 4:43 PM)

The skill and rate at which a player can improve is tied to the position he's playing. A projected SS will take longer to reach his peak fielding ability if he's playing 1B everyday as opposed to SS everyday. In fact, if you stick him at 1B he may never come close to his peak.

In my last draft, my scouts only scouted 7 CF, 24 SS, and 20 3B candidates but they scouted 50 1B and 62 LF prospects. Why is there such an imbalance in position scouting? (Weena - Hall of Famer - 4:45 PM)

The number of positions you see is determined by your budget (high school/college) and your targets and weights. In addition, the projected position is determined by your scouts. The more you pour into your scouting, the more accurate these projections will be. The draft class also varies from year to year, so there may be more 2B one year than the next, for instance.

Does the contact rating translate into the number of balls put into play or a hitter's strike out percentage? (bjb2378 - Hall of Famer - 4:46 PM)

Contact rating impacts the ability for the hitter to make contact with the ball. As a result, the higher a contact rating a player has, the less he'll strike out. However, Batting Eye also plays a big role in avoiding strike outs and getting a good pitch to hit.

Even experienced owners seem to have problems finding consistency out of the RP position - what factors do you most often find owners are over emphasizing and which are which not paying attention to enough when evaluating RPs. (TheJester74 - Hall of Famer - 4:49 PM)

The most important thing to look at for relievers is their durability, control, effectiveness, and pitch ratings. If all of those ratings are pretty good you should be able to use them effectively in relief situations. One other area to pay attention to here is to not have your relief pitchers throw more pitches than they're capable of. If they go beyond their standard workload, they'll begin to suffer in the game.

Another tie in to the draft question, if an owner spent max on high school and college scouting, would setting the "ANY" position to 25 give you the 25 best prospects available, with no consideration given to position? (randallball - Hall of Famer - 4:50 PM)

You will never see all of the best prospects available. By maxing out your scouting budget it only gives you a better chance of seeing those players. If you set your position setting to "Any", you'll draft the top 25 players on your draft board (assuming signability is not an issue).

One of the strongest offensive positions in the game is catchers - why so many Mike Piazza like catchers? (TheJester74 - Hall of Famer - 4:54 PM)

Most of the time, these power hitting catchers shouldn't be behind the plate. They may be hitting .280 with 30 HR and 100 RBI, but their impact on the pitching staff and preventing baserunners from stealing usually doesn't justify the position assignment. It's the Brad Ausmus vs Mike Piazza debate.

Why are DITRs all about somebody's perception of their future? If something has suddenly clicked for these players, why shouldn't their current ratings jump up? (Bribar - Hall of Famer - 4:57 PM)

Their path for development does immediately change when it "clicks". Each development cycle forward will result in a more rapid climb to a higher ceiling.

Something i'd like to be able to see when checking my players stats. A last 10 games and a last 30 games stat page. Any chance of having this ? (wolvie14 - Hall of Famer - 4:59 PM)

If you view a player's profile, the Game Log page will show you his last 10 games or the game-by-game results for the entire season.

Do the pitches (4-Seam FB, Slider, Curveball etc) in each pitchers profile have any relevance to the actual performance of the pitchers? For ex: Would a pitcher with a Curveball as his 1st pitch be less affected by a low velocity ranking than a pitcher with a 1st pitch fastball (assuming all other ratings are the same). (eclipse33 - Hall of Famer - 5:01 PM)

Pitch types are closely associated with a pitcher's ratings. A sinkerball pitcher will have a better groundball/flyball ratio. A hard thrower will have more strikeouts. A finesses pitcher will have less strikeouts. Knuckleballers will have higher durability ratings. It's all intertwined.

Well that's time. Thanks to everyone who submitted questions and concerns and I hope I was able to answer them all sufficiently. Take care!

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