MLB DFS Strategy

MLB DFS Strategy

MLB reports

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer/Part Owner) 

We are ramping up our coverage on DFS play at MLB Reports, and will include some strategy articles in the forthcoming days and weeks.  We come from a high level of handicapping backgrounds, and have been given the go ahead from the braintrust at MLB Reports to start sharing some of these with you.

Of course Chuck Booth and I spearheaded this movement back a few years ago with just regular baseball futures.  We were not sure if we wanted to go ahead with the MLB DFS Fantasy at all, but were finally convinced for demand by a couple of our BBBA writers (Josh Robbins and Trey Rose).  The need is there and we are looking to deliver.

I have played DFS long enough to be the guy who writes the posts here.  The gambling philosophy championed by Booth in the 90’s is brilliant for any sources of tournaments or gambling period.  It weaves the Martingale Betting System (progressive betting with the double up theory) and it fosters it with several other techniques so you don’t bet against yourself.

So what we do is isolate three pitchers (one ace, one mid level and one bargain) who we like for the slate of games. Then based on the team stacks that are good, we decide whether or not to implore 3, 5 or 7 team stacks.  Depending on this number determines whether you use 9, 30 or 63 rosters for the night.

Based on what contest you like to use, you must check on the max entries for your selections.  We must commonly use 5 stacks with the three pitchers.  This gives you the chance to both use DraftKings and FanDuel on equal footing.

Since you must use two pitchers on DraftKings, the three pitchers will be on 66.67% of your lineups, while on FanDuel each chucker is used once for 33.33%.  It still stands to reason you need to have 2 of the 3 chuckers to throw well on any given night to turn a profit.  If all 3 are good, your chances increase even more.

 

We are using a formula that is not being implemented by anyone else. Granted this theory works way better on FanDuel than on DraftKings, but is also a great GPP maneuver for the bigger totals on DraftKings. We also like the choice between the two sites. Being able to switch off players on DraftKings, and have 15 games per day is conducive to more other player roster spread out over the field. This system does not mesh well with head to head to double up formulas. It is best used with Quintuple up winnings, or great big jackpots. Your 9, 30 or 63 roster will all be different - and your hoping that one of the variations will be that one to hit it big.

We are using a formula that is not being implemented by anyone else. Granted this theory works way better on FanDuel than on DraftKings, but is also a great GPP maneuver for the bigger totals on DraftKings. We also like the choice between the two sites. Being able to switch off players on DraftKings, and have 15 games per day is conducive to more other player rosters spread out over the field. This system does not mesh well with head to head to double up formulas. It is best used with Quintuple up winnings, or great big jackpots. Your 9, 30 or 63 rosters will all be different – and you’re hoping that one of the variations will be that one to hit it big.


The sites where they give you more points for offense is the big deal there.

So what we do is isolate three pitchers (one ace, one mid level and one bargain) who we like for the slate of games. Then based on the team stacks that are good, we decide whether or not to implore 3, 5 or 7 team stacks.  Depending on this number determines whether you use 9, 30 or 63 rosters for the night.

Based on what contest you like to use, you must check on the max entries for your selections.  We must commonly use 5 stacks with the three pitchers.  This gives you the chance to both use DraftKings and FanDuel on equal footing.

Since you must use two pitchers on DraftKings, the three pitchers will be on 66.67% of your lineups, while on FanDuel each chucker is used once for 33.33%.  It still stands to reason you need to have 2 of the 3 chuckers to throw well on any given night to turn a profit.  If all 3 are good, your chances increase even more.

DraftKings is a lot better for bringing home the bigger jackpots on this system, and we love the ability to swap out players all day.

DraftKings is a lot better for bringing home the bigger jackpots on this system, and we love the ability to swap out players all day.  Keep in mind you will not win as often. but if your picks are even decent, you should not lose the farm all at once, and when you have that 75% or above night for your key’s, the rewards are rapid and profuse.

Why the odd amount?

One of the biggest faults I see in people gambling is betting everything even.  If you wager on 4 favorites in a night and then go for 2 – 2 – it is guaranteed loss night my friend.  By choosing 3 you create a win or a loss on your selections.  You can go 3 – 0, 2 – 1, 1 – 2 or 0 – 3.  If you go 0 – 3 you are probably not going to have a good night.

Just for your information.  Whenever you place a bet for anything in life when you take nothing but favorites, please pick and odd amount to define a winner or loser.  If you go .500 – you are losing, as the house always takes their share too. 

The same can be said for stacks.  5 is the best from our research, although if there are 7 stacks on a full slate, it has also seen a bevy of dollars come our way.  It would probably take a full 15 game slate.

When using our formula it is important to avoid any Coors Field games if possible.  Don’t even get me started on the Coors Field meaning towards DFS.  It is almost as bad as a slate with Clayton Kershaw.  The sharps use these slates to bet as much money as humanly attainable.  We will get to that in future articles.

I love using American League clubs over the National League.  You don’t have the pitcher hitting, and if you can pitch 4 of the 5 teams on the road it works even better.  You need as many AB as possible.

Grab a pencil and a piece of paper.  If you are true newbie to MLB DFS – we do suggest you indoctrinate yourself into this formula slowly by using just a 3 team stack with 3 pitchers for 9 total rosters. 

Go to ESPN’s daily schedule of Projected Lineups

Write down all of your teams stacks lineups on a piece of paper.  That should 40 – 45 players of position hitters.  This is your roster of men to use in all your rosters. 

It is massively important to stack in FanDuel especially, so the idea is to use a minimum of 3 players on each team for every lineup you do. 

Those 7th and 8th players (with the pitcher) can act as grabbing other players from the non-stacks – that are on one of your other stacks to use.

By using an ace, mid-level and bargain level pitcher, this should provide a nice pyramid of budgeting for up and down all of your stacks.  By the end of all your rosters, there should be everyone on the teams starting lineups listed several times.

The idea behind doing this is that most of the players on a winning team (that you stack) will contribute something.  In essence, it is a multi-layering stack.  On our 30 rosters format, most of the players are used 6 out of their teams 12 rosters.  This gives you great coverage.

The odd concept of teams selected works like this for team stacks.

3 team stacks potential records (good for smaller slates, also non Coors Field or Clayton Kershaw days) (9 rosters)

3 – 0, 2 – 1, 1 – 2, 0 – 3 records if you go on whether your teams can score at least 5 runs/grab at least 10 hits, and hopefully a few HRs

Example stacks

BOS/WSH – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/TOR –  each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

TOR/WSH – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

5 team stacks potential records  (best used in 15 game slates and GPP’s, or at worst on a quintuple up head to heads also non Coors Field or Clayton Kershaw days) – 30 rosters

5 – 0, 4 – 1, 3 – 2, 2 – 3, 1 – 4, 0 – 5

Example stacks

BOS/WSH – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/TOR –  each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

TOR/WSH – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

5 team stacks potential records  (best used in 15 game slates and GPP’s, or at worst on a quintuple up head to heads also non Coors Field or Clayton Kershaw days) – 30 rosters

5 – 0, 4 – 1, 3 – 2, 2 – 3, 1 – 4, 0 – 5

BOS/WSH – each with 3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/TOR – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/STL –  each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

BOS/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

WSH/TOR – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

WSH/STL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

WSH/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

WSH/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

WSH/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

TOR/STL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

TOR/WSH – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

TOR/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

TOR/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

STL/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

STL/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

STL/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

7 team stacks potential records  (best used in 15 game slates and GPP’s, or at worst on a quintuple up head to heads, also non Coors Field or Clayton Kershaw days) – 30 rosters

7 – 0, 6 – 1, 5 – 2, 4 – 3, 3 – 4. 2 – 5, 1 – 6 or 0 – 7

(1) BOS/WSH – each with 3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

 (2) BOS/TOR – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(3) BOS/STL –  each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(4) BOS/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(5) BOS/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(6) BOS/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(7) WSH/TOR – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(8) WSH/STL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(9) WSH/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(10) WSH/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(11) WSH/PIT -each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(12) TOR/STL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(13) TOR/BAL – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(14) TOR/DET  – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(15) TOR/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(16) STL/BAL –  each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(17) STL/DET – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(18) STL/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(19) BAL/DET –  each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(20) BAL/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

(21) DET/PIT – each with  3 different pitchers once for a lineup 3 x 1= 3 rosters

 

The goal is to be right on at least 62.5% of your selections between Pitchers and hitter combined.

That is why we favor the 5 team stack and 3 pitcher format.  If you can reign in at least 5 wins, you should see a profit.  To win in Pitching is to be one of the best points per dollar spent on the Starters.  Obviously a bargain pitcher may not finish among the top guys for FPP on the night, but in relative cost to what he has brought you in salary relief, it may work out.

By using  7 team stack – you need at least 7 out of 10 wins, which is a lot harder than 5 out of 8.

Now that we have seen the formula a little bit it is time to use it in practice

Red Sox, Mariners, Blue Jays, Rangers, Orioles, Nationals,  Rockies, Marlins and Cardinals have been our favorite road warriors so far this year.

Lets say your 5 team stack are these teams:

BOS/SEA/TOR/STL/WSH

Here are your 10 variations

(After you use the 1st team with everyone, simply look at all the teams to the right of Boston.  Boston will no longer be part of the 10 rosters here.  So you start Seattle on the next set.  each time you cross a team off, you go one down the list on the right.  It goes 4 – 3 – 2 – 1)

BOS/SEA

BOS/TOR

BOS/STL

BOS/WSH

SEA/TOR

SEA/STL

SEA/WSH

TOR/STL

TOR/WSH

STL/WSH

These are your 10 rosters to work with.  you must take a piece of paper and write down your pitchers. Ace, midlevel and bargain  Example would be Chris Sale paired with Aaron Sanchez, then maybe with a guy like Jon Gray on the road of course.

DraftKings Roster Select. (with Fanduel it is each pitcher with  the 10 rosters made up of 5 teams stacks.)

Sale/Sanchez (Sale just on FanDuel)

put an X beside it when it is done.  use stacks of at least 3 players from each team.  Grab your 40 – 45 entire roster of names and mark down each player as you set one lineup for how many rosters they are on.

BOS/SEA

BOS/TOR

BOS/STL

BOS/WSH

SEA/TOR

SEA/STL

SEA/WSH

TOR/STL

TOR/WSH

STL/WSH

The reason why hitting on Fanduel is easier with this format are the pitchers. Since you are using 3 chuckers either way, it is much better to go 2/3 in FanDuel with 66.67% of your rosters being affected nicely. By having 2 Starters in every DraftKings lineup, each guy is on 66.67% of the rosters. But here is the caveat. If you go 3/3, it is utter domination.

The reason why hitting on Fanduel is easier with this format are the pitchers. Since you are using 3 chuckers either way, it is much better to go 2/3 in FanDuel with 66.67% of your rosters being affected nicely. By having 2 Starters in every DraftKings lineup, each guy is on 66.67% of the rosters. But here is the caveat. If you go 3/3, it is utter domination.

Sale/Gray (Gray on Fan Duel)

BOS/SEA

BOS/TOR

BOS/STL

BOS/WSH

SEA/TOR

SEA/STL

SEA/WSH

TOR/STL

TOR/WSH

STL/WSH

Gray/Sanchez on DraftKings (Sanchez on FanDuel)

BOS/SEA

BOS/TOR

BOS/STL

BOS/WSH

SEA/TOR

SEA/STL

SEA/WSH

TOR/STL

TOR/WSH

STL/WSH

(63 roster Stack looks like this)

63 team stacks

Out of the 30 rosters you selected, each team has 12 stacks wheeled with all of your other 4 teams in scenarios that should arm you with the chance to win a nice price if the clubs can put up some runs. It is the law of averages here on how.

Typically a player will be on 6 of those rosters.  Keep in mind this is very time sensitive, so have ample enough to make necessary changes once the rosters are set.  Again with lineup locks in FanDuel, this is a scenario where playing an all day slate (with matinees sucks).  So I don’t recommend it.  15 game night slates, with (non Kershaw and Coors Field) is the most ideal.

DraftKings at least gives you the chance to swap out players.  Often times, I will just implement a guys replacement on any said team.  (Global Player swap  in the My Lineups area will also show you who is not in the starting lineup.  Again that ESPN confirmed lineup sheet is a good reference point to begin with. but the fantasy sites themselves are quick on the draw to see who is in all of the lineups for all of the clubs)

In DraftKings, you can also buy in on 30 rosters for a contest all at once and then simply go through all individual lineup to customize this.  The best way to this is to visit “My Contests” and then sort by lineup.  If you had 30 all at once, keep picking from the top and fill out your rosters accordingly.

With FanDuel, the red NS means you got replace that guy immediately.  Again, this can be achieved by going to your upcoming rosters, and then going to the icon that says “Quick Player Replace”.  I like the way these guys will also state if there is additional money.

Often times on DraftKings – I will look at MY Lineups again after the player swaps – to see if their is some remaining balance left that I may be able to use on upgrades).

You may be tempted to use players outside the 40 – 45 man rosters (to which I say is a bad idea, unless it provides salary relief).  Like a minimum player that may be a Catcher for $2000 may get you some budget help for more expensive players.

The reason why this formula works well is the coverage of the stacked teams.  You have a player 6 to 10 times throughout your lineup – and he goes off for a 40 – 50 PTS game, then you can put some distance between you and the others.

With baseball not being so predictable, contrarian players on these teams can also surprise for a game.

I often think of a stack I used with the Milwaukee Brewers one day a while back, when we had Aaron Hill bang out 3 homers, that was a good day.  We also had Danny Valencia‘s 3 HR affair, because we love the a’s versus LHP – when they can use Marcus Semien and Khris Davis to help smoke them.

Not all stacks work out as last night so Bud Norris of all people shutdown the vaunted Cubs lineup.  But by using 5 teams, you have more of a chance for 3 of the next 4 clubs to pick up the slack.

if you can hit on 4 of 5 stacks, I have even seen 3 lackluster pitching performances by the three starters yield a profit. If any of the clubs score some decent runs it helps.

You typically won’t lose as much on a nightly basis if things go awry.   Depending on one or 2 stacks is just not enough.

Nothing is ever solid.  I mean it is all up to chance….However this way for whomever has used it, has said it the most enjoyable formula they have seen.  Every time a player does something significant it is a race to see the updated standings.

Doubling UP:

We usually play the $1 contests every day….But if we have lost for 3 or 4 nights without clicking, we will jump to the $3 contests for a night, then even go far as the $5 contests.  Once we win once, we jet back to the $1 contest again.  It is the old ‘Martingale Theory’.  However this one is on steroids.. 

The law of averages dictates you will win some of the time.  Don’t go crazy with your wallet, but stepping up to another level if you can bankroll it helps.

Some of our friends even have implemented this into the quarter arcade contests.

Another idea is to use a contest with a 50 Max entry for $1 a apiece.  By doubling the same roster 2X, you can knock off 25 of your rosters x 2 dollars.

You can always take you other 5 variables and enter them in $2 contests.  We have found out that you should go into the quintuple up contests though.  One of those 5 variables might be your best entry of the night, so if it is, make sure you can make some money back if you crush the field.

For DraftKings, we love the Solo Shot and Moon Shot Contests.  Sometimes you can dominate a smaller field.  We have seen some of the FanDuel Rally’s offer 588 entries with a 30 entries limit.  This is right up the wheelhouse.  You would have about 5% of the field entirely.

We are just scratching the surface of what we can do to help on DFS here.  We have articles coming on Coors Field, (the Kershaw effect) and also about teaming up with other prominent DFS to make up a ‘dream team consortium’ by aligning idealogy.

We have started movement by bringing in the DailyRotoHelp.com guys to give you players to use, and what pitchers and stacks to use (you may want to sign up for other services as these guys are fully legit.  We have been killing it on DFS since we started using their advice.

Plus we have dynastydigest.sportsblog.com to give daily DraftKings Rosters.

II you are also looking for premium value plays, we are subscribers over at scout.com. We often find our 12 players outside of the team stacks to use there. These are great for team stacks of 3 players for each of them, or if you have a Pitcher and a team stack on common, you will need to find 1 extra player.  That one guy may not always be from another stacked team in your wheels.

Personally, Chuck Booth (Josh Robbins) and I will focusing more on Fanduel to select guys.  We apologize for not being able to bring this sooner. but we had to really perfect this before bringing it forth.  It has been a wild ride already.  Look out world!!  Other player’s cash is 10 seconds from a toe-tag!!

z fanduel win

** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***

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A big thanks goes out to our ‘Chief Writer/Part Owner’ Hunter Stokes for preparing today’s featured post.

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