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DEL Time: 10:21
Q: How do we handle Free Agent Bidding?

A: Free agent bids (technically waiver wire bids) can be made with the "Waiver Wire Bids" button in your team control menu.

Q: Can I send in multiple bid sets for one bidding period?

A: No. If you send in multiple bid sets, the game will replace the last set with the new one. To sign players from two groups (say, a quarterback and a cornerback in football), you would want to make two free agent groups in the "Waiver Wire Bids" command.

Q: Why the complex set of bid orders rather than a live bid format?

A: We considered a live bidding process when developing DEL's current free agent signing system. After hashing out exactly how it would be done, it was fairly apparent that the results from a live bidding system would be identical to how they are with the system we now use. The tradeoff is that the DEL system requires a little more thought put into the orders initially, while the live bid requires a lot more time put in as you react to other teams' bids (and prolongs the season significantly). The "bid orders" system was deemed the better option.

Q: What seems to be the most important thing right now in the fa-bidding?

A: Stragically, each coach will value something differently as being the most important thing in FA-Bidding, but essentially, the goal is to improve your team. Regardless of your priorities, the first thing you have to do is to weigh how much you are "under budget" with how much you want to spend.

Do you want a few superstars, or a team of steady guys who might be underrated? Even if you go after some superstars, make sure you save enough money for the rest of your players. They may be cheap, but aren't free.

Q: Does the program compare our bids or do we meet at a certain time and make something like a "live-chat" with biddings?

A: The program compares the bids, and essentially, the highest bidder wins.

Q: Will there be just one round of bidding?

A: Prior to the start of each season, there will be many rounds of Free Agent Bidding, as well as regularly scheduled dates throughout the season, where Free Agents can be signed using the FA-BIDS command.

Q: Will we pick in a certain order, one guy after the other?

A: All teams are processed for their orders, and essentially, the players in the FA-LIST are auctioned off. The order of the players in the auction is based somewhat on their talents (as judged by the computer), but mostly on the amounts that teams are willing to spend on them.

Q: How can i minimize the danger of bidding for, let's say, 10 players that I am longing for, and getting not a single one because of some other coaches spending more money on exactly each and every one of these 10?

A: This is a difficult question to adequately answer because every coach will have his own ideas on how things work. And what works in one league might not work in another, simply because the personalities are different. The only way to be sure you get the player is to bid the highest. However, because you must be fiscally responsible, and cannot spend more money than you have, you must consider your budget. If you have some set of players that you really want, then try assigning priorities to them in the FA-BIDS command, listing other backup players in the same groups but with no priority. This is usually the safest way to try for some players but have a "plan B" just in case. (Of course, using priorities can also backfire, if the auction order runs a majority of the lower priority players before your preferred players!)

Q: What do priorities do in signings? Does a higher number mean higher or lower priority?

A: A player with a higher number is given a higher priority - you will only attempt to sign a player if his priority is the highest or one below the highest of all remaining players in that group.

Q: Do people get priority if they send their bids in ahead of others?

A: No. All bids that are sent in before a free agent round are given equal priority. You will be awarded with a signing based on the merit of your contract, and not on your punctuality.

Q: Is the fa-bid the only way to fill the roster with the players we need?

A: No. In soccer leagues, there are up to 18 players added to your team at the start of each season. In other pro sports, there is a draft.

Q: Whe were players signed cheaper by other teams than what I bid?

A: First off, it is important to remember that the dollar amount in your bid is the "value" of the contract, rather than the actual cost. (Value and cost are equal if there is no bonus.) So it is possible that the winning bid had a higher value than yours. Otherwise, there are a number of reasons why a team's bid can be skipped or reduced:

  • If the roster is completely full (55 in baseball, football, and hockey, 50 in soccer, or 18 in basketball), bids are ignored.
  • Use of priorities in your bids can cause bids to be ignored.
  • If you have already signed the maximum total players, or the maximum for one free agent group, bids will be ignored.
  • If you have no room under budget, all bids are reduced to one year at league minimum (0.04 in baseball, hockey, and soccer; 0.12 in football and basketball).
  • If you have already spent the limit sent in your bids command, you will not bid any more. If the bid at hand would put you over the limit, it is reduced so that you spend exactly the limit.

Q: Why are players often signed cheaper than what was bid on them?

A: Two reasons. First, the actual cost of a contract with a bonus is less than the "value" of the bid times the number of years. Second, the submitted bids are actually maximum bids - the computer will use a value between the highest and second-highest bids to determine what contract the player signs.

Q: Can I sign free agents if my team is over budget?

A: Yes, but only for 1-year contracts at $0.04 million.

Q: Why do so many players refuse to stay with their teams? This puts them on the free agent list where the elite teams can snatch them up! / Why do so many players sign with their current teams? This lets the elite teams keep all of their superstars locked up without ever becoming free agents!

A: Believe it or not, both complaints are common. There is a common perception among inexperienced coaches that the good teams are only good because DEL is designed in such a way that keeps elite teams propped up. The general nature of the complaints is that they would like all of their good players to stay on theeir teams while all of the good players on elite teams should become free agents. Obviously this is unfair - we need to apply an even standard, not one that arbitrarily punishes some teams and favors others.

Q: Why is my team signing players in the middle of the season?

A: Rather than having teams forfeit games, DEL now fixes teams that would forfeit by signing free agents for them.

Q: When can a signed free agent be traded?

A: A free agent must remain on your team (or be cut outright) until the end of the season. After that point, you have the option of trading him.

Q: Can a player who was under contract but cut become a restricted free agent?

A: No, restricted free agency is only for players whose contracts expired.

Q: Why do you let computer-run teams bid so much that it makes it hard to sign players? / Why do computer-run teams bid so little that it is easy to hoard talent?

A: There is probably no right answer, but the number of complaints on each side of this issue indicates that our system is not too far one waay or the other.

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