Since I started this thread and am likely going to be the commissioner of season 2, I will commment on pinotfan's summary... My comments in blue.
1. 16 or 24 teams. 16 was cool, but I think 24 would be even better. I’d recommend starting with a goal of 24 and cutting it to 16 like we did this time, if necessary.
I agree to this in principle, but in practice, there is a problem. If we start with idea of having 24 teams, then people will be submitting categories with 24-35 choices (or some number similar). If we end up going to 16, then what? Do we all submit new categories? I'd rather set the number and stick to it. The other option is to sign up for the league, but hold off on submitting categories until we know the exact number of teams.
2. Owner voting on categories. I know we don’t want a whole league of weak categories, or fifteen starting pitcher categories, but voting seems a little cumbersome. I’m all for giving the Commish the power to decide if a category is deep enough.
I would be fine with the commissioner having some power to oversee the categories chosen.
3. Owners changing categories. A small point, but subsequent owners may have selected their categories based on what was already proposed, so there could be a domino effect. I know from last time that a lot of owners stated their categories with the preface ‘since we need X …’
I don't see owners changing categories causing a big problem. Yes, there could be a couple of subsequent changes, but I'd rather have that than overlapping categoires.
4. Draft order based on cumulative bids. Not a fan of this one: there is strategy involved when ‘big’ categories come toward the end of the draft. Since the assumption is the best categories will be first, this proposal would mean the last two days would basically be bench players and maybe middle relievers; not very exciting.
This isn't exactly true. A deep category might have a lot of lower bids, but still produce starting caliber players. Remember, if there are no categories like "Starts with Q", then most categories will have some value. The categories with the biggest bids will be the categories with a huge droppoff between at some point. I'd say let's try it like this once, at least.
5. You can only bid a certain dollar amount once. Was this a problem? To me this takes away from bidding strategy: the more limits you put on how dollars can be allocated, the less flexibility and therefore less options. Also, with an improved mix of categories, the $1 bid strategy becomes much more risky - even more so if we have 24 teams.
I'm ok with no bidding rules.
6. Trades during/after the draft allowed, but only if categories are maintained. I’m fine with this, but I don’t see the need for putting limits on it. Why not be able to trade draft spots? Why not be able to trade my outfielder from category A for your 2B from category B?
I agree 100%.
7. Categories must have from 16 to 25 players (obviously more if we do 24 teams). I agree; too much depth makes a category as meaningless as no depth. I’d be willing to let the Commish have leeway on this, though, to allow categories with a couple more selections if it doesn’t upset the balance. For example, if you have a category with 30 choices but five are $200k scrubs, that effectively is the same as a 25 player category.
8. Early drafting. I think we’re all for this; I’d extend the period to 4-5 days. The only thing that saved me on Day One, where I had to draft in all five categories, is that I’m off on Mondays; I never could have made my picks on time otherwise. Also, I’d suggest not determining what days the individual drafts are until after the Early Drafting: not knowing what day a draft is should speed up early drafting, as you won’t have the issue of wanting to wait to see how earlier drafts go. After the drafting, randomize the remaining categories over four or five days.
Yes, I am always for early drafting. I hate skips but it's necessary (some people just don't feel the need to pick on a timely basis, if there's no penalty for not doing so). I would consider lengthening the schedule to 6 days (four categories per day for days 1-4, five categories on days 5-6).
9. Add the category links to the individual draft pages. Please! This is more valuable than having a list of available players, at least to me.
10. Pre-determining categories – X number of starting pitchers, Y number middle infielders, etc. While we had some positional unevenness this time, I don’t want that entirely to go away: sweating out 2B added a bit of drama for a lot of us! However, too many SPs was a problem. I’m all for giving the Commissioner the power to ‘guide’ owners as the league fills. Once we get a certain number of SP categories, the Commish can tell new sign-ups that their category can’t be an SP one (although something like the ’78 Yankee category would still be OK).
I don't think a specifc rule on categories is necessary as long as the commissioner guides the owners to what is needed. That being said, I'd rather have more SP categories than needed, as opposed to fewer than needed. People can always use a SP to relieve, but not the other way around.
11. Drafting on a weekend day. It’s really a matter of everyone’s schedules; the actual days become less important the longer the Early Drafting period is.
Yep, 4-5 days of early drafting, followed by Tue or Wed start, allows some weekday and some weekend draft days
12. High bidder determines draft day. As in #8 above, I’m a fan of randomizing draft days. You also avoid the ‘everyone wants their category on Friday’ issue.
Don't like this idea
13. Add a stadium draft. Definitely adds to the drama. Arguments can be made for selecting stadiums before or after the regular draft, I’m cool with either. Rather than have the Commish select, though, I’d like each owner to nominate a stadium – and again, if there’s an imbalance (all pitcher parks, for example) the Commish can tell later signups their park has to be hitter-friendly. I’d add a 17th (or 25th) park, WIS Field, just so you don’t get totally screwed and can at least have a neutral park, but that may be too much of a safety net.
Yes, we'll definately have a stadium draft. As to the timing, we could mix it up... some versions of this theme can have it first, others last, others somewhere in the middle. Heck, I could include it in the most cumulative dollars bid ranking. If everybody bids low $, then it will go last... which might get some people to bid higher on it.
14. Add the DH. Please no …
I'm generally against the DH, but as different variations go, a DH could be added in future versions