First, when you ask about specifics, you have to create links.    People are only going to work so hard to help you.
Second, it looks like you have 36m committed to next season's payroll.   Not sure why you feel cash-strapped for next year.
Third, your pitching sucks.  I think that's been mentioned before.   Your fielding is league average right now so they're not going to help much.

Finally, if you don't think you can compete, try dealing your older players.   Don't expect much in return but it doesn't hurt to try.
2/12/2013 2:22 PM
I feel cash strapped because with almost no prospects in the minors, and only having 1 pick inthe first 5 rounds this year (albeit the #3 overall pick), it seems the only way to get another ML caliber player is to sign an IFA. Top level IFA's in my world cost around $20m, no to mention the cost of scouting it. Since next year it will probably cost me around $6+ to sign all my draft picks, I'll need another $12 milion in free player payroll to transfer to prospect payroll to get around that $20m threshold for the IFA.

While I only have $36 committed next year, $20m is for Victor Manual, $7m for Arthur Hahn, $5m for Wolf Lee: ( and $5m for Benji Barfield: ( 

I plan on budgeting my money like this next year:

Payroll; $80 (targeting $65 for ML, $4 for MILB, $11 to transfer to prospect
Prospect: $20
Coaching: $14
Int scout: $14
College: $16
High School: 0
Advanced: $12
Training: $16
Medical: $13

Thus I would need to fill 21 spots on ML roster with just $31, which is why I need to cut salary. Since Alston and Boone are going to ask for $6m+ each in arb, I can't afford them right?

I know my pitching is dreadful, and I have no clue really how to fix it given my lack of depth everywhere else. The shortstops available in the draft all project to be A++ SS, whereas the top pitcher to me projects to just be a B+ in my opinion. My defensive ratings seem noticeably weaker than what top teams are using in those positions, (For example, CF, I'm playing Boone there). Poole and Garko both seem to best fit as a 2B, but they are also my 2 best young players. 

Wilfredo Alonzo:

2/12/2013 2:49 PM (edited)
Well, you need a plan.  When you signed Manual to 20m, you threw "compete with 65m payroll" out the door.   If you want to compete with 65m, trade Manual for anything you can get because your signings and your "plan" aren't compatible.  

You seem to have the misconception that you have to have a team full of A/S to win a WS.   That's wrong.  I had 3, 2, 2, 4(2 were RP) on my WS winners.

You need to decide how you're going to run that team.   If you're going to chase IFA, don't sign players to 20m contracts because you have a conflicting strategy.  If you like Manual and think he's the foundation, screw transferring to prospect and sign some parts to fit around him.   Since you don't seem to have the pitching to compete this season, try moving some of those older players for role players to fit around Manual.  You won't get a stud prospect for a 36 y/o player.   
2/12/2013 4:11 PM
To be fair, when I signed Manual and Hahn I was brand new to the game. My mindset was I'll just buy a championship. I also tried signing like 3 other players to huge contracts, and luckily I got out bid. I had no clue what a mess my team was until now. Obviously I'm still pretty bad at  this game, but i'm knowledgeable enough now to realize how my team is pretty much stuck. I have no great prospects, and only a couple decent ML caliber prospects at all. 

It seems the only way to fix this team is to rebuild it entirely, which I screwed up when I sign Manual and Hahn. Otherwise how would I build around them, because I don't have much to give to other teams, and my team as constructed can't do better than.500 ball (if that)

What I'm basically asking is what is the best way to improve this team?

Do I just build around Poole and Garko? Can I even play the 2 of them together really? Since their best position is both 2b (neither is great at it, but are both overly qualified to play 1b/lf), should I trade Poole (Garko is much better offensive player, despite being a worse defensive player)? 

2/12/2013 4:52 PM (edited)
bg, let me offer you a few ideas coming from an entirely different direction than Mike.  I started with a team much like yours, no current hope and very little existing talent.  I had two things you didn't... first, a previous owner had been with the team for one season and had already started the cleaning out process.  That was a decent advantage.  However I still had a few turd contracts on the books... most people do, I would think.  And I picked up a few players I shouldn't have, not realizing they weren't worth it... I think everyone does that at first, too.
Second thing I had was, I thought this thing looked way too hard for me to figure it out by myself, so I got a mentor before I even got my team.  All I wanted was NOT TO SCREW UP while I was learning.  Think I've done OK so far.  So...

Seems like you have a mediocre situation, and talent you don't like.  There are pieces there you might not be able to move.  Take your lumps at first.  If your players aren't performing, watch them and figure out why.  If your team sucks and you can't get out of it, use it as a learning experience.  Plan when you can get rid of the parts that don't work, and plan what you'll do when it happens. 

Probably the biggest thing I continue to learn is how to value players.  Who will really perform, and who will just look like they might.  That informs everything else you end up doing.  But one of the other aspects of that is that you learn to realize just how much player talent is replacement level talent, and available more cheaply than you might expect.  As I said, I started out with only a couple of true big leaguers, but I've at least filled out the team around them with castoffs via Rule 5 and Waiver claims.  Get cheap where you can, as fast as you can.  Sorry for the rambling, just trying to give you a little support.

2/12/2013 4:53 PM
Assuming you can't move Manual, I'd build around him.  You started by acquiring a SS.  You only have 34m committed to next year's payroll.    I'd start by looking at my team right now, determine who I think is a good piece and who can easily be replaced(check available FA because, if that type is available 50 games into the season, they will be next year also).   IMO, Manual is your 1B, Hahn is your C and the guy you got at SS will work.   Fill in the other 5 spots with what you have(if you have defensive-capable at 2B, CF, 3B now).    RF/LF are less important defensively.   Keep those 8 and work on moving the others for pitching.    Alston, as he looks like a 1B, seems to be a good piece to move as are Judd/Oliver.   Finally, give up the dream of competing with 65m payroll and Manual on the team. 
2/12/2013 4:58 PM
I traded for the SS, I gave up a minor leaguer (the SS I acquired was playing in HiA before I acquired him) DH who had extreme power and eye porjected ratings but bad vL and vr ratings and atrocious contact. However since my adv scout is only $10 who knows whether I just gave up a much better player than I thought I was. 

The draft is rich with SS, so I can get a superstar SS inthe draft, but that will be a couple years away. Both Poole and Garko both best play at 2b, and neither can really play 3B,  (earlier in this thread you said to play Poole at 3b, but for the long term I probably want someone better there right?). 

What if I'm not nececessairly looking to  compete next season, but rather just trying to best build for the future? So if I can fit a roster in a 65M payroll with Manual, despite losing a ton, that's fine, as long as I can sign an IFA and continue to draft well.

I've looked at my team a ton, and from what I can tell, Alston/Boone are not worth the $6M+ they will ask for arbitration right? Likewise Jimmie Burns ( will probably ask for too much also in arbitration?

How do you suggest getting decent pitching if no one will trade me a decent pitchers for what I can reasonably give up? 
2/12/2013 5:05 PM (edited)
Well, if you're telling me your content to lose for 4-5 seasons, you're asking the wrong person for advice.   All I'll say is "If that's what you want to do, waive Manual.  You don't need him to lose, he won't help you lose and you'll be far better served using that payroll space to transfer to prospect."
2/12/2013 5:10 PM
If I release him I thought I had to still pay for his salary, thus I wouldn't get the payroll space anyways right? The point is to make sure when I get the prospects I still have people to contribute. 

With the way my team is constructed, there is almost going to be no way to ever build a championship team unless I go through a season where payroll isn't high in order to get stud prospects, right?

and I don't want to lose for 4-5 years, I'm trying to rebuild this as quick as possible, but also in a way that I can also realistically compete for a championship at some point. Not be battling to win the wild card. 

2/12/2013 5:15 PM (edited)
Waive him not release.  He'll have to be claimed.

There are dozens of ways to build a team.  You seem to have your mind set on the way you want to do it. 

Bumped a thread to help you sort it out.
2/12/2013 5:14 PM
Actually it's the opposite, I'm not set on any one way to build the team, besides this methodology: the fastest way to build a championship contender.

Given how new I am to the game, I didn't think I could accomplish that goal without getting stud prospects first, but if you have specific ideas on how to accomplish that I'd very much appreciate it if you could share. 
2/12/2013 5:16 PM
Did you read anything I posted on this page?
2/12/2013 5:19 PM
I did. But I'm confused as to how to fill in massive holes at CF and pitching. Nobody has offered me any type of good pitching for the players that I can spare. And I don't think I'll ever win a world series if I have to pay Alston/Boone a combined $12-$14/yr. 

There is no one on the waiver wire that's that good. Maybe:, but that's about it. Are there usually supposed to be MLB quality players on the waiver wire? 

2/12/2013 5:42 PM (edited)
BG, I think part of the problem here is that as a new player its hard to do what I think is the most important thing to win in HBD... player evaluation.

You seem to be under the impression that in order to get player to help contribute to a solid team you need to trade for them, or make some huge FA splash, or that only All Star caliber players will make you into a playoff team. As Mike alluded to, thats simply not true. One of the undervalued troves of the 'right kind of role players' that newbs often overlook is the FA scrap heap. There you can often find cheap role players to fill in holes you may have in your roster AND who can help you win. I do it all the time when I have a team that I'm in the midst of trying to restock the minors, or simply have a playoff team and I want to round out my bench with players who can make some kind of contribution. You can do this too, without taking too much away from scouting and the draft if you're trying to rebuild at the same time.

Here is a good example of a FA scrap heap pick up... I needed a DH, got one for less that $2M... Is he an injury waiting to happen? Yes, but so far, so good. In the meantime, he is leading the team in HR and RBI with an OPS of .800+. He's also not Albert Pujols or anything, but he is a solid bat to have in the order.

2/13/2013 11:33 AM
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