Editor’s note: Pitcher List is excited to be partnering with FantasyDraft, featuring advice articles every morning through the entirety of the 2018 season.
To kick off our DFS coverage, we have an exclusive 100% free tournament open exclusively to Pitcher List readers, with $600 up for grabs. Signup and play free at FantasyDraft here.
We recognize that many of our readers haven’t played Daily Fantasy Sports in the past and we thought it would be best to go over the basics. Here is the 101 on how to play DFS.
What is DFS?
DFS or Daily Fantasy Sports is a fairly new way to experience Fantasy Baseball. Unlike regular fantasy baseball (Roto, H2H, Points), DFS offers an opportunity to change your lineup every single day. The contest begins with the first game of the day and concludes when the last game of the day ends. No week-long H2H commitment or even season long commitment.
DFS vs Fantasy Baseball
- Play for Money or Free
- Contests Begin and End the same Day
- Draft the Desired Lineup within your Salary Cap
- Shorter Commitment/Faster Payout
- Choose your Level of Commitment (Daily, Weekly)
It’s just like fantasy baseball except you get to draft a new team every day and compete against other players. Winning is great but being able to draft a new lineup daily or different lineups on the same day is what makes it fun keeps bringing people back for more.
How to Play
Picking the right DFS site can be tricky. They all offer similar types of games but with different rules (scoring or salary cap). I have been using FantasyDraft recently and would definitely recommend it to anyone looking to play. My favorite thing about FantasyDraft is they allow you the flexibility to roster multiple players at the same position. A single lineup includes 2 P, 3 IF, 3 OF and 2 UTIL. Now, I can happily draft both Hoskins and Abreu even though they both play 1B.
To get started, you will need to create an account. FantasyDraft allows you to deposit money via Paypal or Credit Card. You will want to make sure you understand the scoring rules before drafting your lineup. After creating an account, next step is draft your lineup and join a league. I would recommend trying out free leagues before you start competing in the money leagues. There are 6 different types of league ranging from H2H to Tournaments with thousands of entries. I have tried all of them but find myself playing in the tournaments the most. My advice to beginners would be to start out with smaller tournaments.
Next, just track your lineup and overreact to every single at-bat. If you end up placing “in the money”, your winnings will be added to your balance. The money can be withdrawn from your DFS account via a check that takes approximately a week.
Drafting Your Lineup
- Weather – The weather should be the first thing you look at when drafting players, even before player salaries. A rained out game is the worst thing that can happen and will result in zero points no matter the player
- Player Salary – Value is key.
- Lineups – Pay close attention to daily lineups and make sure you are drafting someone who is going to play. Be careful with DTD and older player. Rotowire posts lineups as soon as they are out.
- H2H Matchup – H2H data is important but make sure the sample size is not too small. Don’t ignore the changes though. Felix Hernandez is not the same pitcher as he was in 2014.
- R/L Split – Certain players are elite from a certain side. Asdrubal Cabrera hit .392 against Lefties and .240 against Righties
- Stadium – Not just Coors, but look up pitcher friendly and hitter-friendly parks.
- Wind – Wind Direction and Speed are not as important as some of the other factors but they do help the ball get out of the park. This is sort of a tiebreaker between two players
These are a few of the things I research before drafting my lineup for the day. Obviously, there are going to be many storylines throughout the season that should be considered before drafting. Not to mention employing different strategies such as stacking or trying to predict player ownership %. We won’t go into that great detail in this article, but we will have daily articles helping you craft your team.
Now that you know the basics, take it for a spin at no cost to you. Signup and play for free at FantasyDraft. Enter our exclusive MLB Opening Day Freeroll and win your share of $600 in free cash and prizes.