Fantasy Baseball Guide Going Forward
Fantasy sports have been around for years, but daily fantasy sports are still pretty new. Besides being a lot of fun, they have a ton of potential for you to make money off of them. Here’s a short primer to success in playing in MLB leagues.
When you are drafting your first MLB team, you will notice that you need to fill a certain amount of positions. Your fantasy site should break the players down by position to make this a lot easier for you to focus on. Even with this, there are several things that you will need to keep an eye on. For one, look at how much salary you have to spend. DraftKings, for example, will give you $50,000 to fill 10 positions in most of their default leagues. It ends up being one player for each position, plus an extra pitcher. A good starting pitcher will secure you the most amount of points (usually), so this is a good starting point. For now, don’t worry about your second pitcher.
Once you pick a pitcher, look over to your roster and you will see that there is a remaining amount of salary left. Divide this by the number of players left to draft, and that’s your average draft price per player. It’s good to keep in mind, but until you have a couple more players on the roster, it’s not too helpful. First base is a good next stop as that’s where your power hitters usually reside. Next, draft a decent outfielder as these also tend to carry a lot of power.
At this point, if you look at your average salary left per player, that number will be very low. You’ve already drafted your biggest point producers, though, so this is okay and to be expected. Look at a catcher now, as they have low prices. Find one that will produce some points for cheap, and then do the same with a second baseman. Your average should go up immediately. Now, you just need a third baseman, a shortstop, two outfielders, and another pitcher. Look for a decent closer, and draft the other positions as you deem best.
Advanced Strategy (for Beginners!)
Look at the results of a few leagues at your site and see what the average winning points number is. At DraftKings, a score of 150 will typically put you at or near the top of the average league. At FanDuel, you will need about 60 points. Also note that each site has slightly different scoring. The way they treat hitting is very similar, but FanDuel is much more heavily focused on the positives of a pitcher and doesn’t punish you for walks, past balls, and so on. Rather than looking heavily at stats, at FanDuel, you basically just want a pitcher that will rack up the Ks and get a win. Technical mastery isn’t as big of a deal.
Now that you know what kind of score to shoot for, your job is much easier. The major sites all track the average points per game each player has been scoring, and you can see them before you draft. At FanDuel, you want a pitcher that can produce 15 to 18 points. At DraftKings, it should be about 60 points.
For hitting at FanDuel, you want to have about 40 to 50 points from hitting, while at DraftKings, it’s 90 points. Before you finalize your roster, ensure that your projected numbers are as close to these goals as possible. By no means is this a guarantee, but it will help you to get closer to the top of the standings in your league. Of course, the league that you are in may have variations to account for, but this is a good starting point. At DraftKings, roughly 40 percent of your points come from pitching, and 60 percent come from hitting. But, because there are so few pitchers on each team, that’s where your primary focus needs to be. You have 2 pitchers and 8 hitters.
At FanDuel, 25 percent of your points should come from pitching, and 75 percent from hitting. Again, the focus needs to be on pitching as it’s 1 pitcher and 8 hitters.
The good news is, the math from here is easy to do. You have 150 points you are shooting for at DraftKings. If you get 40 of them from pitching, you have 110 more points to go. With 8 batters, the goal is to get about 13 or 14 points per batter. This won’t happen, though, as you simply cannot predict things perfectly and you don’t have the salary to buy top players. Because of this, a concept called “value” has become one of the leading methods of finding success in these leagues. This is not an easy concept to master, but the basic point is you want to spend as few dollars per point produced. Once you have addressed the basic structure of your team, finalizing the value you get from it will be much easier. The great thing when it comes to fantasy is when you are at the game. If you get the best tickets available, you may find yourself cheering for the team and some players on the other squad.
Yes, this is a lot of information to take in if you’ve never played before. That’s why playing in a few tournaments to gain experience is so important. Even if you have played, if you’ve never tried working on these principles, try it. They will help you to elevate your game to the next level very quickly. Daily fantasy sports leagues exist for more than just baseball. There’s also football, basketball, golf, college basketball and football, as well as NASCAR. If you’re looking for a league for your favorite sport, it’s out there.