VBL Constitution

TLDR Version of the Rules & Info:
– Commish does NOT own a team
– League simmed it’s first games on August 12, 2012.
– As of August 2023, we use OOTP 24.
– Scouting is on, set to Normal
– Injuries are set to Low.
– Season Tickets & Day-of Ticket Sales are shared at a 40% rate.
– Coaches are on
– Talent Ratings are 1-100, with Overall/Potential Ratings utilizing the Star method.
– Cash Cap is $500,000
– New owners get their cash debt slashed in half upon joining.
– Revenue determines budget, information can be found here.
– Buyouts and Incentives are capped at 15%
– Top 3 teams per division make the playoffs.
– You can edit players potential and actual ratings during the off-season based on your in-season participation. For more information, click the VBL Rewards link at the top of this page.
– How many rewards a team has, can be found by clicking here.
– A full feeder league is used to populate the draft pool.
– Off-Season Typically takes 1.5-2 months
– Regular Season Sim Schedule is 4 days per sim on M, W, F, SU.
– DH was voted in by the GM’s beginning with the 2028 season.
– Offseason tournament replaces traditional Spring Training model.

VBL Rules: Updated: August 2023

Intro & History:

The Virtual Baseball League began with the VBL1 and VBL2 in the mid 1990’s using Front Page Sports Baseball as the simulator of choice. In 2002, the VBL3 began as the VBL1 and VBL2 began to shut down.

From 2002-2012, the VBL3 was simmed using Front Page Sports Baseball and led by Mike Branda. 

In 2012, the final sim was done, but as the doors to the VBL3 closed –the doors to the VBL, utilizing OOTP Baseball opened.

In an effort to provide historical context, ten years were simmed using OOTP. After that, all owners participated in an inaugural draft. Teams began with budgets, markets, and fan interest/loyalty that were even across the board. 

The first year of the VBL was 2002 in-game and 2012 real time. The first games were played (Real time) on August 12, 2012. 

The league began using real players, but during the 2004 season transitioned to utilizing a Feeder League system. While several of the Feeder players are “real”, the VBL is mostly known as a Fictional league.

The one rule that has remained constant throughout the VBL1, VBL2 and both the VBL3 and VBL is that the Commissioner does NOT own a team in the VBL.

League Structure:

Governance. The league Commissioner runs the day to day function and governance of the VBL. Each division will have two representatives that will be asked to represent ALL teams in any preliminary league change discussion, or any matter where the Commissioner feels it’s necessary to bring them in. The team representatives also have the authority to organize and approach the Commissioner about any topic relative to the league.

The Commissioner shall be in charge of organizing and operating the league file. He shall also be the lead executive in deciding league matters.

The Team Representatives shall consist of the two longest tenured GM per division. If there is a tie in tenure, the Commissioner will determine a method to choose between those tied in tenure.

If any of those members choose to not participate as a representative, then the next longest tenured candidate will be offered that spot.

Team Representatives are responsible for monitoring the day-to-day happenings around the league and mediating any issues between members or suggesting any rule changes to enhance the enjoyment, balance, and long-term viability of the VBL. They also will help ensure that contract rules, and all other rules are followed in the league by alerting the Commissioner of any infractions within their division.

Further, if an existing team wishes to relocate/rebrand, it must be approved by the majority of the Team Representatives. The GM wishing to relocate/rebrand needs to send details to the Commissioner’s Office which will then be shared with the Team Reps.


The Commissioner, with input from the Team Reps may at times take action, including applying penalties not specifically listed in these rules, or removing GMs from the league, as determined for the best interests of the league.

VBL Structure:

The VBL consists of 32 teams (expanded prior to the 2024 season from 28).

The VBL has 4 divisions, each with 8 teams. Each team in the VBL has a AAA, AA, A and RL club.

The VBL utilizes a Feeder League system for the drafts that consists of 96 college teams (potentially adding in the near future), and 72 High School teams (potentially adding in the future). 

Players enter the feeder leagues from the following nations: Aruba, Australia, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curacao, Dominican Republic, Japan, Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico, South Korea, The Netherlands, Venezuela and the United States.

Roster Rules:

Each Team shall be allowed to carry a maximum of 178 players, excluding the International Complex.

The Active Roster limit is 26 players. Active rosters will expand to 40 spots on September 1st.

The 40-man roster is the roster of players eligible to be placed on the active roster. A maximum of 40 players may be placed on this roster. Players must be on the 40-man roster prior to September 1st in order to be eligible for the playoffs.

The Injured List will consist of 10 days.

When trying to remove a player from the 40-man roster and assigning to the minor leagues, GM’s must Waive & Designate for Assignment.

The Minor Leagues have roster limits that dictate which players, and how many players can be on the roster.

AAA – 35 player maximum, no age restrictions.
AA – 35 player maximum, players can not be older than 28.
A – 37 player maximum, players can not be older than 24.
RL – 45 player maximum, players can not be older than 22.
The International Complex may have a maximum of 60 players.

All leagues utilize the DH.

GMs are expected to follow the roster limits. If an organization is not within the roster limits, the commissioner may “auto” the organization or minors to get all rosters within limits if the sim is stopped due to these errors.

Additionally, any player who has a DFA time during the sim will be demoted to a minor league affiliate. If there is no room within eligible minor league affiliates, the player will be released.


Waiver Period & DFA Time:

Waivers are set to 13 days, while the DFA time is set to 17 days. In order to be released from the 40-man roster AND sent to the minor leagues, a player must be Waived & Designated for Assignment.

Rule 5 Draft:

The Rule 5 Draft will take place on December 28th of each year. Players who are not protected on the 40-man roster and meet the Rule 5 requirements, will be eligible. 

The Commissioner will announce that all roster moves are frozen at the time of the pool reveal. This is to ensure all teams are working off of the same draft pool, and not wasting time creating lists with players who may be pulled back.

The draft takes place in-game utilizing in-game lists. In order to draft a player, teams must have the roster spot on their 40-man roster.

To easily see who might be eligible from your team for the upcoming Rule 5 draft, GMs can create a filter while viewing their entire organization.

Regular Season Schedule:

The VBL consists of 162 games, with a division-focused schedule and no interleague play.

Teams will play each division opponent 14 times during the regular season (98 games), and each non-division opponent 8 times (64 games). 

Regular Season Tie-Breaking:

Tiebreaker games will only take place when they impact a playoff berth.

If there is a tie for 3rd place with teams in 4th-8th place involved, then a tiebreaker game will be played with home-field going to the team that won the head-to-head series.

If there is a tie between 2nd and 3rd place (or 1st and 2nd), then the head-to-head winner will earn the top playoff spot. If the series was tied, then the division record will be the second tiebreaker, followed by run differential.

Playoff Format:

Wildcard Round:

The third place team in each division, will play the second place team in a best of 3 series, with all games taking place at the second place team’s home field and occurring in 3 consecutive days (with 1 day off prior to the start of the series)

Divisional Round:

The winner of the wildcard round will play the team that won their division in a best of 7 series. This series will be a 2-3-2 format for home field, with a day off for each travel day.

League Championship Round:

The winner of the Sabathia Divisional Round will play the winner of the Helton Divisional Round in a 2-3-2 format. The winner of the Webb Divisional Round will play the winner of the Mendoza Divisional Round in a 2-3-2 format. Home-Field will first be determined by seeding. If the two teams share the same seed from their division, then W-L record will determine home-field, followed by head-to-head series, followed by run differential.

October Classic:

The October Classic will be a 2-3-2 format with each league pennant winner earning a chance to win the VBL Championship. 

Home Field advantage is determined by the winner of the previous year’s October Classic. 

Team Settings:


GM’s can place their team anywhere in North America, so long as there is not another VBL team playing in that city.

Relocations can happen at any time, but require the majority of Team Representatives approval first. Relocation requests should be sent to the Commissioner, who will then share details with the Team Reps for approval. 


Stadiums require a minimum park factor of .800 and a max of 1.200 in all areas. GMs can use http://www.ootputilities.com/parkgen/ to create their ballpark, and send the dimensions to the Commissioner.

Like relocations, a stadium edit can happen at any time – however, the Commissioner reserves the right to not allow them if they are happening often.

A new stadium will be built with 45,000 capacity. Teams must consider this factor when building a new stadium, specifically since it’s likely their current park has a larger capacity.

Logos & Designs

When relocating/rebranding, the GM must be able to provide logos, and uniforms for that rebranding. If they cannot, and the Commissioner is unable to find appropriate images, the GM will need to choose a new concept. 

Minor League Teams

Minor League Teams can be rebranded and relocated at any time. They fall within the same rules as above.

New GMs

A new GM can relocate and rebrand their franchise in the offseason of their first season. The same rules above will apply to them.

If a new GM inherits cash debt, that debt will be slashed in half. 

A new GM is also offered one get out of contract free card. The GM can choose 1 long-term contract to expire in the first offseason of their management.

Contract Rules:

A player can receive a long-term contract extension offer at any point regardless of their service time.

Max contract length of 6 years beginning in the offseason prior to the 2031 season.

Any team or vesting option years shall not exceed the value of the highest guaranteed year of the contract.

Only one team or vesting option year is allowed in any contract.

All team options must have a buyout of 15% of the contract year (i.e., if the option year value is $1M, the buyout must be at least $150k)

Player opt-outs/options are not allowed AFTER team options.

Players are free agent eligible after 6 years of major league service time. Minor League Free Agency is after 6 years as well.

Incentive/Vesting Max:
500 PA or 130 games started for a hitter

180 IP or 25 starts for a SP

50 IP or 25 games finished for a RP

A player’s RP/SP status is determined by their most recent role.

Penalties for illegal contracts
Contracts that are illegal with options, will be reset to guaranteed values that meet the rules.

Contracts with buyouts that do not meet the rules, will be reset to meet the rules.

Amateur Draft & International Free Agency/Discoveries:

The Amateur Draft will take place on December 25th of each year, with the draft pool revealing itself on October 31st. 

The league will utilize Stats+ to conduct the draft. The draft will begin informally with picks being made without a timer for a few days to allow teams time to get organized with their draft lists. 

When the Commissioner starts the draft clockhe will share the draft timer settings as a reminder.

Draft picks can be traded 1 year ahead of time. 

International Free Agency is turned OFF in the VBL, but may be reviewed in the future due to changes in OOTP24.

Each organization has 84 spots dedicated to their International Complex. It is expected that each club will discover 16 international players per season. 

International Discoveries will take place in the following nations: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, El Salvador, England, Germany, Guatemala, Italy, Jamaica, New Zealand, Nicaragua, South Africa, Taiwan and the Virgin Islands


Trades must be submitted, and approved by your trading partner by using the Stats+ trade tool (https://statsplus.net/vbl/trade/#create).

The trade deadline is July 31st, no waiver trades are allowed.

Upcoming free agents can NOT be traded from August 1st – Until Free Agents file, unless they sign an extension first. 

Players cannot be traded back and forth between the same teams within a 12 month period. 

Draft picks can be traded for the current and 1 year upcoming. 

If a player gets injured during the sim, the trade will still get processed unless the team puts in the trade notes that they’d like to hold off if any injury takes place. 

All trades are processed at the end of the sim. It’s advisable that you bench players who are traded, or put them in DFA to avoid injury, and not use an option year. 


League Financial Settings:

Cash Max/Min: At the end of the season, teams can only have a maximum of $500,000 or a minimum of -$500,000. 

Revenue Sharing: Teams will contribute 40% of their day-of and season ticket sales. This began in 2031. 

Budget: A team’s budget is based on revenue, excluding playoff revenue. 

Team Owner: A team owner does not decide the budget of the team.

Media Revenue: All 32 teams will receive $1,000,000 in national media revenue. Local media will be added to the revenue line, and will be determined by the game. 

Merchandise Revenue: The merchandise revenue baseline is $350,000. 

Players Rights: Players have 10/5 trade veto rights, as well as the right to refuse a minor league assignment after 5 years of VBL service time. 

Ticket Prices: Tickets have a $4 minimum, and an $7 maximum. 

Participation Rewards

GMs are rewarded for their above and beyond participation in the VBL. Rewards can be submitted between January 15th – February 1st. 

The tracking of these rewards, and how to earn them can be found here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1OVrutgIcrX0kKZWiOxiJcKg8pNvgGygJwqQ0GkxzcGc/edit?usp=sharing

GMs are able to submit rewards in the offseason by visiting each of the below links:

Potential Reward Submission: here
Actual Reward Submission: here
Bribe Reward Submission: here

Sim Schedule

The deadline to submit exports is typically 11:59am eastern. We sim on Sunday (fast), Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The offseason could have more off days scheduled in. 

Exports will be pulled at Noon eastern on each day, unless the Commissioner states otherwise. 

Sims will be 4 games, but occasionally 5 days if there is a universal day off in the VBL.

Sims will be broadcast in Slack utilizing the Real-Time Sim feature in OOTP. 

VBL Club Tournament & Spring Training

Replacing the traditional Spring Training model, the VBL is introducing a new club based tournament that will give teams an opportunity to play competitive games prior to the regular season, as well as earn financial rewards for their progress in the tournament.


8 Groups, of 4 teams. 

Teams will play each team in their division 4 times. 

The winner of each division will enter the knockout phase as a home seed.

The second place team in each division will enter the knockout phase as an away seed. 

Each knockout phase will be a best of 3 series.

Group Placement:

Teams that finish in 1st or 2nd in the prior VBL regular season will be placed into Pot #1

Teams that finish 3rd and 4th in their divisions will be placed into Pot #2

Teams that finish 5th and 6th in their divisions will be placed into Pot #3

Teams that finish 7th and 8th in their divisions will be placed into Pot #4

Each Club Cup Division will have 1 team from each pot.


Prize Payout ($ Added to Gate Revenue at the end of the VBL Regular Season, prior to Rev Sharing):

Entry: Every team will receive $100,000 and 10 Participation Points. 

Reaching the Knockouts: Options A) $200,000 B) extra pick at the end of round 6 C) 15 Reward Points

Reaching QF: Options A) $300,000 B) extra pick at the end of round 5 C) 25 Reward Points

Reaching SF:  Options A) $400,000 B) extra pick at the end of round 4 C) 35 Reward Points

Losing in the Finals: Options A) $450,000 B) extra pick at the end of round 4 C) 45 Reward Points

Winning: Options A) $500,000 B) extra pick at the end of round 3 C) 50 Reward Points.

Teams choose their reward at the end of their tournament journey. If a team gets knocked out in the Quarter-Finals, then they choose between 300k or a pick at the end of round 5. They do not get the reward for reaching the knockout’s on top of their QF reward.

Cash is added to the cash setting up to the maximum $500,000 allowed. If a team is capped, then the $ will go toward gate revenue at the end of the season. 

Player Settings:
Injuries will be OFF
Fatigue will be VERY High.
Roster size will be 50 players.


The tournament will begin on February 1st with group play ending around February 16th. The tournament will last until about March 7th.

Spring Training:

Spring Training will begin on/around March 10th, and last about 3 weeks, roughly 15 games.

Injury and fatigue settings will return to their original setting. 

The World Cup of Baseball: Every 2 seasons, beginning in 2031. 

16 GMs participate. Everybody has an opportunity to play every 2 years. The World Cup will take place in the virtual Fall and Winter. 

In 2031, the teams that finished in 5th-8th place in their divisions will have the first right of refusal to manage a random country. 

Teams will be randomly assigned once all 16 GM’s have confirmed their willingness to manage. GMs will earn participation rewards for managing the team, and exporting etc. 

The remaining 16 GMs who are not managing a team, will have an opportunity to handle the press for one team and earn rewards for it. The rewards will be on reviewing team selection, and then a tournament review. 

After 2 years, the GMs switch roles with the same country. 

In the 2 years after that, a new draw for GMs and countries will take place.

Participation for running the team, and writing the 2 PR’s will be 25 points. 

General League Settings:
OOTP Version: 24 (July 2023)
Overall, Potential and General Ratings Scales: 1-100
*Coaches/Scouting: On (Teams are required to have full coaching staff. Asst GM is not required)
Scouting Accuracy: Normal
Designated Hitter: Yes
Cash Cap: $500,000
Ghost Players: No
Personality & Morale Ratings: Yes
Suspensions: No
Visiting Team’s Gate Share & Season Ticket Share – 40%

* Teams are not allowed to hire coaches from another team. Further, only free agent scouts can be hired in the time period between Game 162 and the VBL Championship. 

Interested in Joining? Contact the Commissioner