It’s that time of year! We get lots of emails from Little League board members who tell us that their league is considering whether to be a titled league, (players stay on the team to which they were drafted for the duration of their league participation) or a re-draft league where the entire pool of players is tossed back into the hat each season prior to the draft. Below is a recent email we received and our response. You can read the original post on titling here.
I am a long time baseball coach and board member in Bedford Mass. I am in the middle of a movement of new people changing our league from a titled player league to re-drafting every year. I read your paper on your web site. Needless to say I am in agreement with everything you say as is the minority group. I was wondering if there is any more data or info out there that I can use to try and convince the new people that the title players is the way to go? This would help me greatly.
Thanks for your note. In order to help you, I’d need more information…especially in terms of the reasons why the majority of the board wishes to overturn titling, (my guess is they think the teams will be more fair). Since I do not know which of my article you read, I am not sure what more information I can provide. You might want to go back to our blog and search for “titling” and “re-draft” because I believe there are several articles with additional information, including one with a long back and forth discussion between a re-draft proponent and me.
As far a data goes, what I always look at are standings of divisions that do re-draft every season, either in the younger age groups or in other leagues. (e.g. your Minors divisions might re-draft every season and a neighboring league might re-draft its Majors division). You’ll always find that there are teams that go 15-1 and 2-14 in those re-draft divisions which disproves the theory that re-draft leads to more competitive balance and “fairness.” My main argument is that every new season half of the managers are returning and know all of the kids. The new managers coming up from Minors don’t know any of the players. In a titled situation, at least those rookie managers get a few established players on their team as a base, so that if they don’t have a great draft they will still be competitive. But if they have to draft an entire roster against managers who know the players much better, they are at a huge disadvantage and risk picking a very weak team.
Let me know if there is anything else I can do to help.
(And our reader’s reply):
I got your article on coach deck and it is titled Why your league should not re-draft. In it is every reason that they brought up. The 10 year old being groomed by a manager. The Dynasty issue. On top of that they are picking the draft order every year as well. Which eliminates the order of who won the year before. They do not get the concept of keeping the kids in one system helps them develop faster.