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In Daily Fantasy baseball there are two main approaches you can take to building your bankroll. The first is like contributing to your 401K; it’s playing (and succeeding) at 50/50 and head-to-head games and slowly building up a nice profit that you can either cash out or start playing riskier with. The other is the grand prize pool tournaments which is upping your risk, but also multiplying your possible reward tenfold (or more) – retiring young metaphorically.
If you’re a GPP player, the good thing about your preferred game is that it only takes one win to double, quadruple, or even 10X the amount you would have playing 50/50 contests over a much longer period of time. Unfortunately, you also know just how hard it is to get into the winnings at a GPP tourney.
Arguably the best sport to play grand prize pool tourneys in is Daily Fantasy Baseball. Granted, NFL pots will be bigger because there’s only 17 weeks to play, but that also means more contestants. On the other hand, the Daily Fantasy Baseball season lasts from April through September and there are games 7 days a week, often with 10-15 games a day – it’s the sport of opportunity.
Baseball is the most stat-driven sport out there as evidenced by MLB front offices being full of analytic professors instead of former players. There’s an old saying that ‘baseball is gonna baseball’ which means that a lifetime .246 hitter is eventually going to come down from his 15-20 hot streak and return back to his career splits. When you’re playing 50/50 DFS baseball games, you use that mantra to find players with not necessarily high ceilings, but predictable floors. You stack your lineup with stud players and hope they ‘stud out’ that day so you’re in the top .500 of your contest.
Grand prize pool tournaments are just the opposite. You’re looking for the guy in the midst of a 2-47 streak to have a breakout 4-4 day. You’re searching for a player with 10 HR in his life to miraculously hit 2 in one game. Not easy, right? This is what makes GPP baseball tournaments so fun but so excruciatingly frustrating at the same time.
The reason you want to stock your team with Tiny Tim instead of Tommy Titan is because of variance. In GPP games your lineup has to be the best (or the top 3-5) out of hundreds or thousands of entries. If that isn’t working against you enough, in multi-entry games, one participant could be putting in 20-30 different lineups with all the high projection players optimized and shifted in almost every combination. To win a GPP tournament you basically need to guess how many fingers a person is holding up behind their back, and answering 12 in the hopes they’re a polydactyly.
In order to be successful at GPP daily fantasy baseball tournaments, you basically need to work in reverse of everything you’ve ever been taught about putting a DFS lineup together, tips which included:
Evaluating Vegas Odds – the spreads generally predict the winner so a pitcher behind a big ML gets the win more often than not.
Past Performances – batter v. pitcher splits are a great way to find hitters that might have success that day or vice-versa.
Trends – if a pitcher is struggling with control, you avoid him. If a batter is in a hot streak, ride it out.
Weather – jump on board a team that is batting with the assistance of a 25MPH wind out to left.
So to be successful at GPP in a nutshell, you need to find that pitcher who is a huge +255 moneyline underdog or a batter who is hitting .023 lifetime against that day’s opponent. Your team is going to be made up of a pitcher who walked 13 guys his last time out and batters hitting into a 30MPH typhoon coming right at them. Fun, right?
The 50/50 and head to head games are your everyday round of golf – fun in themselves. The GPP however is kind of like a major – win one and you’ll remember it forever. Win 10 and you won’t need that 401K anymore.
Feel free to check out our article on why it is so important to have a decent pitcher on your team: Click Here
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