Secrets from the Commissioner’s Desk

I’m a firm believer that not just anyone should be the commissioner of your fantasy league. Sure, you don’t need someone who puts much time or effort into it to be able to have a good league, but I believe that when you have a good one it can really take the experience to a whole new level. Based on the feedback I get each year, I think I’ve come up with a pretty good formula in my baseball league and I want to share some easy tips that can help take your league to new heights.

The Rules

There isn’t one set of rules that is best. It really is based on the people that you have in your league and what you want to emphasize. The key is getting everyone’s buy-in on the rules and making them clear. Set out the proposed rules, get feedback and agreement, and then document them. One of the quickest ways to sour someone’s experience in a fantasy league is to either change rules along the way or to have discussed rules/guidelines and then not abide by them because the commissioner doesn’t remember what was agreed upon. the_rules

The Draft

Be as familiar as possible with the draft window and your abilities as commissioner, and try multiple sites to figure out which draft experience you like best as well as which one allows you the tools you like most. Inevitably someone will make a mistake during the draft. The best commissioners know where they can intervene and right a wrong and (equally important) when he should or should not intervene. I even recommend creating a public league and practice the roll of being commissioner and getting used to all of the functionality so that you can be best for the experience you are creating for your friends or family.


Know what it takes to carry your league settings, records, and history forward from year to year. Being able to easily reference what happened in years past can be important for research, planning, consistency, and most importantly trash-talking. When you are only a click away from being able to point out to your brother that he had fewer points scored last year than your daughter, it’s a beautiful thing.fantasy-baseball-ring-300x180

Add Value

This is where I think most commissioners have the greatest ability to grow. If you embrace your role, want to be the best, and take a little extra time, you can make your league a league that people look forward to being a part of each year, which will help your retention and consistency. One of the surest signs of spring in the Midwest is the publishing of the Ken Griffey Jr. Memorial Whiffleball League Draft Kit. About 3 years ago, after a couple years where I refined the different pieces of information that I would send out throughout the time leading up to the start of the season, I began putting together my Draft Kit. It is a single document that contains the draft order; a blank draft sheet for each person to be able to use – with keepers pre-populated; a list of keepers being kept and what round they are saved in; and a complete list of rules including the methodology for determining draft order in future years, the methods for approving trades, and how to handle expansion or the replacing of an owner. Here are some screen shots of the document… Please feel free to rip it off and make your own.





Pg5Pg6Hopefully you will find this information useful and you can make your league the best it can be!


The Commish


Categories: Fantasy Sports

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1 reply

  1. Very nice. And yes, it is nice to be able to do your daughter’s trash talking on her behalf. 🙂

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