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League Constitution

We the People, constituting the membership of the Bleacher Bums Baseball League (henceforth BBL) hereby rededicate ourselves to the pursuit of our hobby, APBA baseball, and that this pursuit in the BBL shall be fun, painless, free of unnecessary hassle, and inexpensive, an escape from daily stress rather than a contributor to it, much like a day in the bleachers at one's favorite ballpark.

Article I. League Structure

A.   The league is comprised of 16 teams.
     1.   There are two eight team conferences, each comprised of two four team divisions.
     2.   The playing schedule will commence in September and end in March.(1998 exception-begin Nov.1, end in May)
     3.   The schedule will consist of 162 games.  
          a.   66 within the division-22 per team
          b.   32 with teams in the other division-8 per team
          c.   64 with teams in the other conference-8 per team.
B.   The APBA Baseball for Windows game will be used.  Minimum software requirements are as follows-
     1.   Baseball for Windows 3.0
     2.   Advanced Draft 3.5
     3.   League Manager Power Tool
C.   Teams retain permanent ownership of players until cut, traded or omitted from the data disk.
D.   There will be an annual draft of Rookies/Free Agents (unowned players) no later than the weekend before Labor Day weekend.  (Exception-1998-October 11, 1998)
E    DH will be used.
F.   Full AIM injuries and fatigue will be used.
G.   Annual Dues are $5 per team, to be spent as follows-
     1.   $5 each for commissioner and assistant commissioner.(Dues forgiven)
     2.   $10 to each division winner.
     3.   $ to the League Champion.  (He will also receive some sort of certificate suitable for framing.)

Article II. The Commissioner and Assistant Commissioner

A.   The commissioner(s) are responsible for administering the league.  
B.   Commissioner is selected by majority vote of owned teams, or by successful revolution resulting in overthrow of previous regime.
C.   Commissioner(s) serves until he resigns, or is replaced by majority vote of owned teams or revolution.
D.   Duties are
      1.   Review all prospective members.
      2.   Establish league schedule.
      3.   Conduct all drafts, including compiling and communicating list of available players.
      4.   Maintain official player rosters of all teams, as communicated by team owners.
      5.   Collect dues.
      6.   Review all trades and waiver claims.
      7.   Establish cut date to reduce rosters to 40.
      8.   Submit and conduct voting on all rule changes.
      9.   Assign divisional alignments of the league, by geography as much as possible, unless another "theme" is voted upon by league members by which to organize.
     10.  Settle all disputes over games and honesty.
     11.  Set and keep deadlines for file flow during season.
     12.  Produce and release to membership series highlights.

Article III. League Owners Duties

A.   Each team will be owned and managed by one or more managers.
     1.   If more than one person is sharing responsibility for a team, both parties are fully responsible, and the team gets only one vote in deciding league business.
B.   Duties.
     1.   Pay dues to league office.
     2.   Send franchise files by deadlines set by commissioner, or inform commissioner by same deadline to leave team as is(if AWAY series) or to sim the games, because you will not be available(if HOME series)
     3.   Play all home games and send results by deadline(see above)
     4.   Vote on rules changes.
     5.   Maintain rosters in Advanced Draft.  Report all trades and waiver claims to league office.

Article IV. Team Makeup

A.   Each team is comprised of 40 players as follows-
     1.   25 on active "Parent"roster
     2.   15 on affiliated farm team roster.
B.   A team may exceed 40 players after the Rookie/Free agent draft and off-season trading period, but must be down to 40 by the cut date as established by the commissioner.
C.   The cut date will be after the draft but at least 10 days prior to the start of the season.
D.   During the final month of the season, the entire 40 man roster can be brought up to the "Parent" club, at the manager's discretion.  After this date, which is to be announced by the commissioner, the rosters are frozen for the remainder of the regular season.

Article V. Rookie/Free Agent Draft

A.   Prior to each playing season a draft of unaffiliated players on the current data disk will be conducted by the commissioner(s).
     1.   The draft will be held no later than the weekend prior to Labor Day weekend.
B.   The draft will be comprised of 5 or more rounds.  Additional rounds may be designated by the commissioner(s).
C.   Each team's position in each round will be determined as follows-
     1.   The teams will be ranked from worst won-lost percentage to best.
     2.   The league champion will draft last, the runner up next to last, otherwise strictly by W-L percentage.  
     3.   In the event of a tie, the commissioner will use a game of chance such as guessing a number or rolling a die to break the ties.
     4.   The draft will be held online, at a URL and time and date determined by the commissioner(s).  Those who cannot participate in the draft live must provide the commissioner or another league member(with commissioner knowledge and approval) with a list to draft from.
     5.   Actual conduct of the draft, including time limits, is left to the discretion of the commissioner.

Article VI. Waivers

A.   Following the draft but before the cut date, then again during the season before the last month of the year, there will be open waivers.
B.   Any team can claim any unaffiliated player off waivers.  
C.   After the cut date, no team can go over 40 players, and must make a cut to secure a waiver claim, after the claim is approved.
D.   Once a waiver claim is made, teams have 24 hours from its announcement to the league to put in a claim to block it.
E.   Teams are ranked by draft order for the pre-season waivers period and the first month of the season, then by W-L record on the first of the month.  A team with a lower W-L record (or draft position) can block the claim of a higher ranked team by claiming that player themselves.
F.   Once a block is put in, it is announced and once again the remaining members have 24 hours to block a claim, as explained above.
G.   No team can block the claim of the lowest ranked team.
H.   A player claimed on waivers must remain with the claiming team for one month before he can be cut.
I.   There will be no waivers the final month of the year.  Rosters are frozen at that time.  

Article VII. Trading and Player Rights

A.   All players remain the property of a team until traded or cut.
B.   The trading period will be defined by the commissioner.
     1.   There will be a trading deadline for players to be eligible for post-season play, approximately one month after the all-star game.
     2.   There will be an absolute trading deadline one month before the end of the season.
C.   All trades will be subject to review.  
     1.   All trades must be reported by all parties involved.
     2.   Commissioner reserves the right to void any trade "in the best interests of the league."
          a.   This veto power is to be used in extreme cases only.  The commissioner must first interview the participants in the vetoed trade and determine their thought process in making the deal.
          b.   A vetoed trade can be overturned by a simple majority of non-involved league members, if one of the involved parties asks the league to overturn the veto.  The commissioner and petitioning parties then present their cases to the league, and a vote is taken.  The commissioner does not vote in a veto appeal vote.
     3.   A team may trade draft picks for the upcoming Rookie draft only.
     4.   Once a trade is approved by the commissioner and announced to the league, it is final.

Article VIII. Player Usage

A. No limitations on player or pitcher usage shall be made by the league, other than those imposed by AIM.  
B. Managers are permitted to adjust a relief pitcher's saves to influence his micromanager in choosing a closer.
     1.   These changes are allowed three times during the course of the year.
     2.   All changes are done by the commissioner.  It is the manager's responsibility to notify the commissioner of his intent to change closers.  The commissioner will incorporate the changes into the "play games" C-file before the series in question.
     3.   Changing of closers is done by reducing non-closers saves rather than augmenting the closer's save totals.
     4.   In the event a reliever with only 1 or 2 saves is made the closer, his save total may be increased to 5.

Article IX. File Transfer and Playing the Games

A.   The TRABL system will be used to send Franchise files.
B.   The commissioner, before the start of the season, will establish the file transfer schedule, including when pre and post series franchise files are due each week and when "Play game" and "results"C-files will be sent.
C.   These deadlines will be followed exactly.  If a pregame FF is not received by the deadline, the team goes out as is without regard for fatigue or injury.  Likewise, if results are not received by the deadline, the games will be played in automatic mode by the commissioner.  This way, nobody has to wait for a tardy league member.
D.   A pregame Franchise file will be sent by the visiting team in a series by a pre-determined day and time.  This file will contain any roster changes, lineups, rotation, and desired micromanager.
E.   A postgame or results Franchise file will be sent by the home team after completing his games but before the deadline established by the commissioner.  This file will contain league boxscores for the games just played.
F.   All Franchise files begin with the letter F and end with .alp.  For the purposes of continuity, all franchise files sent to the commissioner should be labeled F-xxxyy where xxx is the three letter abbreviation used by league manager for the team creating the file and yy is the number of the series either to be or just played, depending on whether this is a pre or post game file.  For each series then, each team should send one Franchise file.  The VISITING teams send theirs before the PLAY GAMES C-file goes out, the HOME teams send their results after, by the results deadline established by the commissioner.
G.   All Commissioner files begin with the letter C and end with .alp For each series, the Commissioner sends two C files, a PLAY GAMES C- file and a RESULTS C-file.
     1.   The PLAY GAMES C-file will contain the information from each visiting team's franchise file. It will be named 
     C-BBPGxx where BB stands for Bleacher Bums league, 
            (for the benefit of those in more than one league) and PG 
                       play games, and xx is the series number.
     2.   The GAME RESULTS C-file will contain the game results and boxscores for the series in question.  These boxscores will be sent out once only, the following week, old boxscores will be deleted, so the C-Files don't get too big.  These files will be named thusly- C-BBGRxx where BB of course stands for Bleacher Bums and GR stands for game results, and xx is the series number.
H.   Micromanagers can be used by home teams as well as road teams (automatic mode)
I.   Teams may use any stadium backdrop and configuration they choose, i.e. they do not need to check the DOMED box on their home park.  Rainouts will be rescheduled by the commissioner at his discretion.  If a game is rained out late in the year, and it bears no impact on post- season play, it may not be rescheduled.
J.   BBW 5.0 features bunting for hits. Since most of the people in this league do not have BBW 5.0 yet, bunting for a hit is not permitted.  Also, the park effects feature in BBW 5.0 must be turned off to play BBL games.

Article X. Post Season Play

A.The four division winners qualify for the post season.  The Northeast 
          and South play each other, and the Midwest and Far West play each 
        other to determine conference champions.
B.  The conference champions meet to determine BBL champions.
C.   Each series will be best of 7.
D.   Playoff series shall be scheduled by the commissioner, who will send out a playoff C-File to the participants.
E.   Post season rosters must be established at the start of the playoffs and cannot be changed, even for injury.
F.   AIM status is reset for the playoffs. Full AIM fatigue and injuries is still used, however.    

Article XI. Amending the Constitution

     A.   This constitution can be amended, changed, or replaced by a majority vote of owned teams.
     1.   A majority is defined as 1 greater than 50% of the owners that participate in the vote.  For example, if there are 16 owners that vote, then 9 votes are needed, if 15 vote then 8 are needed etc....
     2.   Any proposed action, such as a rule change, shall be submitted in writing to the commissioner(s), and within the document clearly state that a rule change is being proposed for a vote.
     3.   The commissioner will distribute the proposed action as received to the membership for voting and count the returns.  
     4.   Any action approved in this way becomes effective the day immediately proceeding the next  Rookie/Free agent draft, unless otherwise specified in the proposal.
For more information on the league, please contact the Commissioner, Jake Smith

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