HOW TO: Judge a Fair Trade
by Nathan Noy
What is a fair trade?
How does my league assure that all trades are fair?
These are common questions that we have been receiving recently at
First, let me say this: make
sure you have a league constitution in place with rules to cover trading. If you are unsure about how to do either check
out our articles on the site: HOW TO: Create a
Constitution and HOW TO: Start a Fantasy League.
Both are a great starting point.
I would urge that a minimum your league has a power of trade veto
rule that will assure teams do not collude and stack their rosters. Lets assume that there is no collusion
present, the question remains when is a trade fair? And what can we do about an unfair trade.
I would suggest your league have a commissioner to make such
decisions, and perhaps a 3person committee to handle disputes or make decisions on
trades where the commissioner is involved. Unfortunately
in a lot of leagues the commissioner is not only generally the most knowledgeable owner,
but also often the main offender of what many would consider unfair trades. I have been in leagues like that, my advice is
that if the commissioner is even a boarder line cheat to quit the league and find a more
honest person to run things.
Ok, lets assume that your league has a fair commissioner and rules
that preclude trades that are deemed unfair or not in the best interests of
the league. What criteria should be used to
pass judgment? My general rule of thumb is
this Can this trade possibly help both teams in some way? If the answer is NO then the trade gets the old
VETO. If its a questionable trade then
the owner that is getting the better end of the deal may have a real hard time convincing
anyone that he is in some way helping the other team.
Dont get me wrong. There
are a number of trades that may look pretty lopsided on their face but are actually
beneficial to everyone. Maybe a team is
building for next year; in keeper leagues with returning owners I fell this should be
allowed. Or maybe a team is 6 SBs back
of 5 ROTO points and 50 HRs ahead, so they trade Bagwell and Helton for Eric Young. Hey if both teams can make a case how this helps
them then it should be allowed.
The real problems start when someone tries to trade Pedro for Steve
Parris and James Baldwin and says Im getting 2 starters for one and I have an
injury. That crap simply does not fly. I would say SHOW ME the statistics; show me under
what scenario this could possibly help your team. If
they come back with, well I project Parris to go 18-8 with a 3.00 era and Baldwin to
go 19-7 with a 2.70 era and Pedro will be 6-15 with a 6.00 era. Tell them to pass the crack pipe. I want to see PROOF that this type of obviously
lopsided trade can actually help both teams involved.
I have found that this method generally works.
If you read this article and you still cant decide if the trade
is fair, send an e-mail to Drafthelp.com with all of the facts. I will personally volunteer to give you my
completely unbiased opinion. Good luck and