Enhancements in Version 7

Pitch-by-Pitch Simulation ------------------------- Version 7 brings the game to a whole new level by simulating every pitch. Previous versions focused on simulating one batter at a time (with exceptions for bunts, hit and run plays, steal attempts, and a few other types of events). Here's why this is, by far, the most important innovation in the new release: - you can still choose to interact with the game on a batter-by-batter basis, just as in version 6, making it possible to play games just as quickly as you always have. - you can now defend more successfully against steal attempts by choosing to have your pitcher make pickoff throws to any base - you can now defend more successfully against steal attempts and suicide squeeze bunts by calling for a pitchout at any time - the game screen doesn't display the tactics chosen by the defensive manager, so your opponent (human or computer) won't know what's coming when choosing offensive tactics - you can instruct your batter to take a pitch on a three-ball no-strike count (or any other count, for that matter) - you get an opportunity to change your tactics as the pitcher-batter confrontation moves through the count - the pitcher fatigue system, which is now based on pitch counts, reflects the pitcher's true workload much more effectively than by counting innings or batters faced In designing this pitch-by-pitch simulation, Diamond Mind has taken great care to maintain the highest levels of realism and statistical accuracy. You can count on the following elements of real baseball being faithfully reproduced in this game: - the game generates realistic patterns of balls, called strikes, swinging strikes, foul balls and balls put in play, and produces the same highly-accurate walk and strikeout rates as before (maybe even a little better) - pitchers throw more strikes when behind in the count, especially with three balls, and expand the strike zone when ahead - batters swing at strikes more often when behind in the count, especially with two strikes, and are more selective when ahead - batters hit for a higher average and more power when they are ahead in the count, and swing more defensively when behind - when pitchers tire, they have more trouble finding the strike zone, more of their strikes are put into play, and more of the batted balls they allow are hit for power - for those of you who like to play with past seasons, the game accurately reproduces the lower rates of walks and strikeouts that occurred earlier in the century. Just as in earlier versions, you can play realistic games among teams from very different eras, because Diamond Mind Baseball makes the necessary adjustments for changing conditions over time. - the game correctly charges walks and strikeouts when substitutions are made in mid-count, as is required by rules 10.17(b) and 10.18(h)(3) in the official baseball rule book - when you convert season disks from earlier versions, the required pitch-by-pitch ratings are automatically computed. - when you create or modify the event tables for a player, the required pitch-by-pitch ratings are automatically computed The computer manager has also been updated in many important ways. We've done detailed studies of manager tendencies using play-by-play and pitch-by-pitch data from recent seasons. We've learned how the count affects decisions made by real-life managers -- which types of hitters are allowed to swing on 3-0 counts; favorite counts on which to steal, hit and run, make pickoff throws, or pitch out; and a lot more. Strategy and Realism -------------------- - version 7 splits the bunt rating into two separate ratings, one for bunt-for-a-hit situations and the other for sacrifice and squeeze situations. This enables the game to accurately handle the many players who excel at sacrificing but are no threat whatsoever to bunt for a hit. - version 7 also gives you two options when bunting with a runner on third. The safety squeeze bunt reduces the risk of having the runner caught off base by a pickoff throw or pitchout, but forces the batter to make a better quality bunt to score the runner. The suicide squeeze bunt, which was the only option in prior versions, leaves the runner vulnerable to pitchouts and pickoff throws, but has the advantage of allowing the runner to score almost anytime the batter gets the ball in play. - you can now instruct your catcher not to make a throw to second when the offense tries a delayed double steal with runners on first and third. This eliminates the risk that the runner on third might score on a successful steal or throwing error. - weather reports are now shown before you enter the pregame lineup selection process, making it possible for you to take the weather into account when selecting your lineups - for those of you who like to play with older seasons, version 7 enables you to select one of the four scoring rules that have been used for sacrifice flies. Prior to 1954, there were years in which (a) no sacrifice flies were awarded, (b) they were given on scoring fly balls but grouped with sacrifice bunts, and (c) they were awarded when any runner advanced on a fly ball. - we've added new plays on ground balls to third, including the 543 ground ball triple play, double plays where the 3b steps on third and throws to second or first, and force plays at third Play-by-play Commentary ----------------------- - the play-by-play library has been dramatically expanded to give you much more variety in the description of common plays, a better feel for the action on the field, and commentary that is more like real-life radio broadcasts - if you choose to play in pitch-by-pitch mode, the game also describes the results of pitches that are not put in play Inter-League Play ----------------- This feature enables you to generate and play schedules with teams from two leagues. The schedules may involve inter-league games or simply be a combination of two league schedules so that you can autoplay two leagues in parallel. Automatic Transactions and Game-By-Game Lineups ----------------------------------------------- - the game now has the ability to apply real-life transactions (trades, disabled list moves, moving players between the active and reserve rosters) automatically as you proceed through a season replay - the game also has the ability to save the real-life starting lineups for every game, and automatically use these lineups in a season replay - each player can now be assigned values representing the percentage of the season they appeared on the active roster and the percentage they were disabled. These values help the computer manager match real-life playing time when you are using the transaction log in autoplay mode. Improved League Play -------------------- - version 7 adds disabled list moves to the types of player transactions that can be carried out. If a league member elects to disable a player, that player must spend at least 15 days on the disabled list. As in real life, disabled list moves can be made retroactive if the player has been sitting out due to the injury. This enables teams to clear roster spots without having to send a player to the farm team. - in a draft league, it's often difficult to remember which roster a player inhabits, so we've added a Find command. You can now enter a last name (in full or in part) and get an instant report on the players (and their teams) whose name matches the string you entered. - in the autoplay area, a new command enables you to have the computer play out all of the games in a single series, even if that series is preceded in the schedule by some unplayed games. This makes it easier to play out one or more series that league members have failed to submit (or submit on time). - in December, 1996, Diamond Mind introduced a free utility program that transfer team rosters from one draft-league season to the next. This capability is now built into the Setup portion of the game. - in version 6.5, we added a few pages of notes that you could display or print. Version 7 expands this concept in two important ways. First, we have provided many additional notes that convey useful information not found in the user guide. Second, we have given you the ability to write your own notes and distribute them with league disks. You can, for example, add your league's bylaws, newsletters, or other information to the notes database in your league's player directory, so that league information is readily available to league members through the game's user interface. - we've added fields for salary and contract expiration year to each player's record. These fields now appear on the team status report, with the salary field totalled for the team. The game does not impose any economic system; you can use whatever system you want. If your league uses a salary system, the game can now track that information for you, and the migration utility will carry it forward from year to year. - when real-life players appeared on more than one team, Diamond Mind has always rated those players on each team and on a combined basis. The team-specific ratings are intended for use by people conducting detailed season replays. The combined records are designed for draft leagues. To make it easier for you to set up for a draft-league season, we have added a command that deletes all team-specific records in the free agent lists. Post Season Play ---------------- - the version 7 Setup utility now includes a command that automates the steps involved in preparing for post-season play. You select the teams that qualified for the playoffs, and this feature creates a set of playoff-ready player files in another directory. This enables you to keep your regular season results intact while you conduct your post- season series. And it works equally well for playoff rounds within each league and for the final series involving the champions of each league. New and Improved Reports ------------------------ - a new report displays the games started versus left- and right- handed pitchers at each defensive position, for both real-life and computer league games - combined report of game scores and remaining schedule - report of currently injured players - expanded team roster report that shows all ratings, plus age, and contract status - runs for and against added to expanded team standings - transaction reports (real-life and computer league) User Interface -------------- - the game screen now displays an error rating for every defensive player, along with the range and throwing ratings that have been there all along - many more game screen menu commands can now be activated with a single keystroke. In previous versions, you needed to access lower-level menus to request instant replays, batter recaps, boxscores, scoresheets, or to enter quick play mode. Now you can use a single intuitive keystroke to access each of these items from the main game screen menus. - you can now request a replay of the last play of the game - the setup utility gives you control over the colors (foreground, background, highlight) used for each of the five regions on the game screen (lineup, current batter, menu/play-by-play, playing field, and scoreboard), making it possible to develop a much more colorful game screen if you like. We have also added an easy way to switch back to a single set of colors for the entire screen, making it easy to set things up for monochrome screens. - manager profiles are now accessed through the team roster screen, bringing two related activities (roster moves and profile changes) much closer together in the menu structure - when editing manager profiles, you can choose whether to have players on the reserve roster displayed or hidden in the lists of batters and pitcher available for insertion into the profile - on the team roster screen, you can now choose to sort your players by their primary position (in addition to the current options to sort alphabetically and by role) - the team roster screen now indicates injured or disabled players - popup lists now show all of the report types that are available in the product, making it easier to choose the reports you want. You will have fewer menus to navigate and fewer keystrokes to enter. - popup lists of teams now show the team's city and nickname (assuming you have entered a nickname for the team), making it easier to find and select the team you are looking for - in any popup form or other location where you can type player names or other text, you can now use the Insert key to switch back and forth between two modes. In insert mode, typing a character causes subsequent characters in the string to shift right to make room. In overwrite mode, typing a character replaces the character at the cursor position. - you can now view and edit the values for the Neutral Park and Neutral Era. We do not recommend that you change these values, since they were carefully chosen, but we figure you might like to know what they are. - you can now arrange teams into divisions in Exhibition League Schedule Generator ------------------ - the schedule generator now gives you the option of generating off- days for the teams in your league Improved Drafting and Player Information ---------------------------------------- - we've added a place to enter the birth date of every player, and we'll be filling this information in on all season disks sold by Diamond Mind from now on. This means you now have quick access to a player's age when you make decisions about possible player moves. - you can now choose to suppress the display of free agents with limited playing time by choosing minimum numbers of atbats and innings pitched. To give just one example, you can display a list of all left-handed pitchers with a minimum of 100 innings pitched. When you sort this list on earned run average, you can now be sure the top of the list won't be cluttered up with guys who pitched well in a handful of innings. - each Diamond Mind player now has a primary position. If you're looking for a 3B, you now have the option to list all players who are rated at 3B or only those players whose primary position is 3B. This makes it easier to find the player you are looking for in some situations.

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