I've got 2 suggestions that I hope can be added into that 20 day trade lock rule.
1) Entry level players do not have the restriction. They were allowed to be traded as prospects before having signed any deal, it just makes sense to me that they don't have the restriction handed to them as soon as they finally sign a deal.
2) This one only applies to mid-season free agent signings. The restriction would essentially be that any free agent signing (preferably entry level contracts excluded) after day 6 would be unable to be assigned to the minors for 20 days. If we go back to the start of Dangles, its big problem was that 1 team was essentially able to sign nearly every free agent with a snowball effect at less than most managers were offering. This was possible for 2 reasons; reputation and the minors. Coming back to when the new updated worlds were released, everybody was given an equal reputation to prevent an unfair advantage to the older managers as well as the managers that played fast worlds over slow worlds. And that worked all fine and dandy as it was mostly best offer gets the player with a little bit of random luck.
However, the snowball effect is still possible. Now that the seasons have all begun, the team reputations are shifting up and down to reflect how well teams are doing. The reputation thing itself isn't a bad idea; my issue starts with the fact that I've noticed good free agents popping up and then are snagged by better teams with better offers than some worse off teams made. To me, this is still acceptable since a free agent probably wants to go a more successful team than a team looking towards relegation. Where I really develop a problem with the system is when these rare free agents appear and better teams snag them up and then immediately get assigned to the minors. If a team plays him, fine, I have no issue, but if the player is immediately assigned its basically telling me a manager is being super greedy and signing players just so that other teams cannot sign new free agents and improve themselves. This is rather unfair for managers less fortunate at the start of the season. It also enables the snowball effect to continually exist as managers are able to assign players for a fraction of their cost and then once again make more offers for the limited number of free agents that appear mid season.
My reasoning for the 20 day mid-season free agent assignment restriction is that it prevents teams for going after every new free agent solely in an effort to prevent other teams from getting them and essentially abusing the minor system. If a team actually wants to play the player, then the restriction wouldn't really affect the manager as he/she can still do so. I suggest that this happens for only mid-season signings since there is a lot of free agent movement during the preseason and sometimes managers get 2 out of 2 free agents they aimed for while only expecting to possibly get 1. It also makes sense from a players perspective. If a strong free agent can expect to be paid millions, why would he go with a team that's going to immediately assign him to the minors and then only make a few hundred thousand. Yes 1-way/2-way deal exist, but I don't think good players sign 2-way deals expecting to be immediately sent down.