How to use league splits in daily fantasy baseball

Aug 10, 2016 |
How to use league splits in daily fantasy baseball
Leadoff and No. 2 hitters carry identical BA and OBP figures, while No. 2 batters have a slightly higher SLG - making them the best overall option in cash games.
Photo By - USA Today Images
Leadoff and No. 2 hitters carry identical BA and OBP figures, while No. 2 batters have a slightly higher SLG - making them the best overall option in cash games.
Photo By - USA Today Images
With the dog days of August now upon us, it can be difficult to find new places from which to mine useful daily fantasy information.

One of the more interesting practices is to examine league-wide splits to see if any conclusions can be gleaned that might be applicable to your daily fantasy lineups.

Some of the following statistics may seem obvious, but they’re all relevant, and they all have a large enough sample size to be considered reliable. Here are some league stats to consider when constructing your lineups:

RH batters vs. RHP: .251/.309/.406
RH batters vs. LHP: .263/.331/.434
LH batters vs. RHP: .258/.332/.427
LH batters vs. LHP: .242/.309/.371

Lefty pitchers provide the most pronounced splits; you should load up on righty hitters and avoid lefty batters altogether. Again, this isn’t groundbreaking by any stretch, but it is interesting to see how much bigger the gap is for lefty pitchers compared to righties.

In wins: .291/.360/.493
In losses: .217/.279/.336

These stats are obviously augmented by blowout wins, but it’s clear that you’re far better off selecting players from teams favored to win than from teams expected to lose.

This is where Vegas plays an important role; you should always check the betting lines before building your lineups. The greater the money line, the more attractive players from the expected winning team become. You can find great value this way.

Batting 1st: .269/.337/.418
Batting 2nd: .269/.337/.429
Batting 3rd: .279/.350/.476
Batting 4th: .260/.333/.466
Batting 5th: .256/.320/.437
Batting 6th .253/.318/.419
Batting 7th: .246/.308/.383
Batting 8th: .242/.309/.378
Batting 9th: .209/.262/.314

We can learn a lot from these numbers - specifically, that No. 3 hitters are the most prolific on average, and should be targeted in daily fantasy whenever possible. Cleanup hitters provide more power but a lower batting average than hitters in the 1-3 holes, making them a more appropriate play in GPPs.

Other observations: Leadoff and No. 2 hitters carry identical BA and OBP figures, while No. 2 batters have a slightly higher SLG - making them the best overall option in cash games. And you should never, ever roster a No. 9 hitter. Ever.

Coors Field: .301/.367/.503
Fenway Park: .282/.349/.459
Globe Life Park: .275/.337/.454
Chase Field: .274/.338/.460
Progressive Field: .270/.332/.454

Wrigley Field: .224/.310/.364
Dodger Stadium: .232/.299/.380
Nationals Park: .235/.303/.381
Turner Field: .245/.319/.367
Citizens Bank Park: .235/.292/.397

The list of high-offense parks is fairly consistent from year to year, and is once again led by the ridiculousness of Coors Field. Fenway Park, Globe Life Park and Chase Field are also standards in the top-5, while Progressive Field has no doubt benefited from an improved Cleveland Indians offense.

As for the parks on the bottom of the list, the top three are no doubt fueled by impressive home team pitching staffs, while the bottom two round out the list primarily due to weak home lineups. The moral: Fade visiting lineups in Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington, and go with the road starter in Atlanta and Philly.

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