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Benchwarmer Baseball Rules

11.0 Roster Changes and Transactions

Roster changes are additions and subtractions to the team's master roster.  Movement of players between different areas of the roster (for example, from the active roster to the minor leagues) is not covered in this section.  Those types of transactions may be done at any time throughout the season.

11.1 Salary rebates and assumptions.

Players released, traded, or signed throughout the season will have their salaries rebated on a prorated basis depending on the time of the season.  In the same way, a player that is acquired either off the waiver wire or through a trade will cost the acquiring team only a portion of his original salary.  See Player Salaries under Team Finances for more details. The League Office will publish a calendar each season with the transaction deadlines and salary assumption/rebate schedule posted.

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11.2 Transaction guidelines

In general, trades and free agent acquisitions follow similar guidelines.  Transactions in Benchwarmer Baseball take place once per 6-game week. In order to better match the BWB Schedule to the MLB Schedule, the actual deadline day will switch slightly throughout the season. See the BWB web site for more details.


Unless otherwise notified, transactions are submitted at the same time and follow the same deadlines as lineup changes.


Only one submission is allowed per week.


Transactions are effective at the END of the fantasy week.  Thus, if you are releasing or trading David Wright on the transaction/lineup submission deadline for Week 12, you still use him for your lineup in Week 12, but not on Week 13 (unless for some reason the transaction was rejected and you instead retain him). In the same way, if you pick up a player in Week 12, he is not available to your lineup until Week 13.


Transactions will be processed in the following order and salary rebates and assumptions will take place concurrently:

  1. Moves to Injured Reserve and Prospect Roster
  2. Releases without contingency
  3. Trades and sales
  4. Free agent signings and contingent releases and contingent IR moves.
  5. Contract Extensions (described elsewhere)

Usually, at the time transactions are processed, the league is also awarding cash to teams for the wins they had in the most recently scored week and their position in the division after that week. That cash will be figured into a team’s balance to help it pay for transactions. At the end of the transaction phase, all teams must adhere to the roster minimums and maximums and keep their cash balance at or above zero.  Intermediate transactions may temporarily put the team out of these bounds, but the key values are checked after all transactions.  Should a team not meet the requirements, transactions will be cancelled, in reverse order, until the guidelines are met. (Example - If a team is out of cash and signed three players – signing #3 is cancelled, then #2 is cancelled if necessary, then #1. If it turns out that after removing #1, #2 and 3 could still be signed, they will be reinstated).


There are no limits to the number of trades/sales or releases that a team makes in a week.  Free agent signings are limited to four per week.

11.3 Trades

Players may be traded or sold to other teams.  Owners who reach such an agreement should decide which owner should report the transaction.  Only one submission is required, as separate reporting may prove confusing.  All trades/sales must be done at the present time - there will be no future considerations allowed - draft picks, players named later, deferred cash, etc. Owners may reach an understanding that future deals are part of the process, but such agreements are considered unofficial and they should be reported at the time that they take effect.  The League Office will not enforce such agreements if one of the parties weasels out.


Trades involving more than 2 teams will not be allowed in the same week. (No 3-team trades, for example)


Any cash must be in even thousand-dollar increments.


The League Office will assume that teams mean for trades to go through.  These actions will be taken to help ensure successful trades:

  • A team that ends up with a cash balance below zero or some sort of illegal roster after all the transactions are processed may have other transactions (signings, releases, or contract extensions) disallowed in order to let the trade proceed.
  • If one of the teams still lacks sufficient cash for the trade, the Commissioner will automatically and perhaps without notice, transfer cash from one team to the other to allow the deal to go through if it appears that there was some miscalculation or other mistake. This is a subjective decision and if the balances are off by a great deal, it is likely that the trade will be blocked.
  • If one of the teams ends up with an illegal roster and there are no other transactions from that team for the week that could be adjusted to allow for a legal trade, BWB will have no option but to cancel the trade. BWB will not attempt to adjust the offending roster with automatic releases or pick ups.

Thus, it’s important for both teams to understand what the trade will do to their rosters. They may have to sign or cut players as a result. Needless to say, the other team may be making other transactions that week under the assumption that the trade will occur…and those transactions may in fact need to be stopped by the league office.

11.3.1 Trade Review

The League Office will make all rulings regarding whether or not trades are allowed. There is no system set up for protests.


The League Office has the right to consider any transaction a "Travesty" and void it, should it determine that it will be detrimental to the integrity of the league as a whole or that either team will be severely limited or damaged in this season or the next.  The general principle is that a trade should benefit both sides.  It is quite valid to "trade for the future," but the league will watch for teams that appear to be dumping players with little or no return.  Trades will not generally be overruled simply because one player seems to benefit more than the other.


While occasionally there may be some disagreements with rulings, please keep these considerations in mind if you wonder why a trade was allowed:

  • There are no huge prizes or cash rewards for winning this league, so typically there’s no incentive for collusion.
  • Salary levels may be seen as a general basis of equity, but might not be the only measure.
  • Some trades may be seen as unbalanced, but allows a team to free up salary dollars this season or next.
  • Players on multiyear contracts need to be considered a little differently.
  • There are long-term implications in this league, so a team may appear in the short term to be giving up too much, but there may be future benefits.

This is a situation where almost anything goes, as in the major leagues.  Only in cases where the office feels there is collusion or a strong appearance that collusion may be occurring - or if there is a case where one player seems to take advantage of another, will trades be overturned.

11.4 Free Agents

As mentioned, up to four players may be signed off the free agent list in any week.  All requested players must appear on the master player list.

11.4.1 Process

Owners submit requests once per week, listing:

  1. the player that they would like to pick up
  2. a backup choice in case the first player is gone (optional); and
  3. a player to release contingent upon the successful signing of either player a or b. (also optional)

11.4.2 Transaction Order

Players will be awarded in a reverse-order manner each week.  A team gets one of its picks, and then goes to the bottom of the list, until all picks are chosen.  The order is determined in this manner:

  1. Team with the lowest winning percentage at the end of the previous week
  2. Team with the lowest place standing in its division at the end of the previous week
  3. Team the most games behind the leader of its division at the end of the previous week
  4. Team the fewest games ahead of the team directly behind it in the division standings*
  5. Team the most games behind the team directly in front of it in the division standings*
  6. Team with the worse head-to-head record (2-way ties only)
  7. Team with the worse division record. (Only when the teams are in the same division).
  8. Team with the worse conference record (Only when the teams are in the same conference).
  9. Team with the worse record in the last 10 games.
  10. Team with the lowest Runs Scored per Game (RPG) as displayed on the league standings page (to one decimal place).
  11. Team with the highest Runs Allowed per Game (RAPG) as displayed on the league standings page (to one decimal place).
  12. Redistribution Draft order from the off-season, if applicable.
  13. Coin flip

* Note: If tied with another team, the value of this is "0"

Items in bold are changes in 2010

If more than two teams are tied, as we go down the list and are able to pull out a team as the first team to pick, we then go back to the beginning to see about the other teams. For example, if we need to go to Conference record to pull out the first team among a three-way tie, then it's still possible for head-to-head records to determine the remaining two teams' positions.

11.4.3 Alternate Picks and Contingent Releases

Should the player and the alternate that the owner listed not be available during his turn, the next choice will be used.  Example: You list as your first choice to pick up Albert Pujols, or an alternate pick of Alex Rodriguez, and a contingent release of Richie Sexson.  For your second pick, you list Jason Bay. Your pick comes around the first time and Pujols and Rodriguez are both gone.  That pick, including the contingent release, is then ignored, and your second pick, Bay, will be used.  Sexson remains on your team.


Note: You can list the same players in multiple picks.  That is you could have your primary second pick be your alternate first pick, list the same player as a contingent release more than once, etc.


< Previous : 10.0 Minor Leagues

Top : BWB Rules Contents

Next: 12.0 Off Season Procedures >

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