Banter Lads Baseball Minnesota Twins MLB OOTP

No live sports? No problem. A simulation of the Minnesota Twins’ hypothetical 2020 season. (Part 1)

I hate being cliché, but with no live sporting events occurring in the United States for the foreseeable future (although MLB does plan on a 2020 season) it is time to generate some fun storylines and stories through simulation.

While some people hate this style of content and think it is tiring, they can go back to living under a rock and being depressed about absolutely nothing sport related to talk about. 

One can only read and write about so many mock drafts and jersey rankings. 

As for Banter Lads, we do what we want, when we want. Let’s get started!

Inspired by Aaron Gleeman of The Athletic and his series on the 2020 Minnesota Twins, we will be utilizing Out of the Park (OOTP) to simulate each game of the MLB season. 

If you have not heard of OOTP, it is by far the most in-depth and realistic simulation game on the market. Think of Football Manager for soccer but better. It blows games like FIFA and MLB The Show out of the water, and while it cannot match their graphics or player control, it is as close to a general manager or manager one can get in the sport world. 

Using OOTP, we will be able to control everything from the lineup to the 40-man roster and waiving players among the other nitty gritty minutia that occurs. 

And while we would already have been more than a month into the season, there really is not a better time to start! It will be frontloaded regarding postings, but once we catch up with where the season would be, we will take it on a week-to-week schedule.

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Chief Baseball Officer Derek Falvey, Manager Rocco Baldelli and General Manager Thad Levine of the Minnesota Twins pose for a photo as Baldelli is introduced at a press conference at Target Field on October 25, 2018 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

While Twins manager Rocco Baldelli and president of baseball operations, Derek Falvey, have proven themselves and are loved among the Twins faithful, it was time to part ways for the newest front man…

Jack Kewitsch.

Look at that ugly mug.

Having already logged 105 hours on the game (thanks, Steam), I have a grasp on what to be looking for and how to manage a virtual baseball club.

Instead of having games logged in this initial article, I will instead be giving you the setup I will utilize so there is a baseline of what to expect and understand in future pieces.

Beginning with player ratings, OOTP defaults to a star rating with ½ star being a player who probably should’ve taken his schooling more seriously and went into business and 5 stars being one who has All-Star, MVP, and HOF potential. 

Stars are not used in baseball, however, and I will instead use the 20/80 scale where a 20 is the worst a player can be, think Byron Buxton’s early career batting numbers, and 80 is that All-Star talent, think Buxton’s speed or defense.

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Byron Buxton makes a catch in center field (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

I have also changed batter and pitcher aging speed to .750 from 1.000. This should allow for players like Nelson Cruz to sometimes play into their 40s with decent to solid play on occasion. It is all about trying to get as close to the real thing as possible. 

Alongside aging speed, the AI’s player evaluation settings are off. Instead of 65% (ratings weight), 20% (current year stats weight), 10% (previous year stats weight), and 5% (2 years ago stats weight) I will go with 25/40/25/10. It isn’t perfect, but it is better than the default and provides a more accurate sense of a player’s potential. 

The final thing that needed changing the Talent Change Randomness setting. Instead of being 100 where a player is going to pan out exactly as expected nearly 100% of the time, it gets moved to 145. This allows for some high-end prospects to flameout or low-end prospects to become legitimate starters. Think of this as the Mike Trout effect

Time to get rolling because we’re going to win, Twins!

One reply on “No live sports? No problem. A simulation of the Minnesota Twins’ hypothetical 2020 season. (Part 1)”

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