When we start playing DFS, we get a sense of what we prefer between DFS cash games and DFS GPP tournaments. Some people like the safety and the incremental bankroll build that cash offers. Others enjoy shooting for the moon and winning that life-changing money or just hitting it big in general. 




We’re going to be breaking down the differences and the different strategies for cash games and tournaments so you can hit it big! Or, dominate in smaller tournaments to build our bankroll so we, not Jeff Bezos, can be the next ones headed to the moon! 

Types of GPP Contests 

MME (Mass Multi-Entry) Tournaments: These are big boys. The ones that have 50K+ entries or more. The ones that you can max enter 150 lineups, where you face a lot of computerized lineups. These have the biggest prize pools, but they’re the hardest to win considering how many different variations of lineups people are capable of.

Limited Entries: If you want to play more than one lineup, but less than 150, this is your lane. DFS sites everywhere have tournament options that limit your lineups. There are typically tournaments for everyone’s taste buds. Three-max entry tournaments, 10-max entry tournaments, and 20-max entry tournaments. 

Single-Entry Tournaments: If you don’t love swimming with the sharks, look no further than single-entry tournaments. No computers are entering 150 lineups in these types of contests, it’s you versus thousands of others optimizing one singular lineup. This is my favorite type of tournament because if you’re not using a generator and are hand-building everything, this is the perfect fit for you too. The number of entries in these types of tournaments is FAR less than in multi-entry tournaments. Mix in a little cash game theory while sprinkling in some GPP ideologies and voila! You have your single-entry builds ready to go!

Winner Take All: These are the riskiest of the options for sure. It is exactly what it says it is. If you don’t win, you go home empty-handed. Approaching these tournaments is tough, but because it is a smaller field – generally – you don’t need to build extremely contrarian lineups. These are tournaments not high on our priority list, however.

MLB DFS Lineup Stacking

In MLB DFS, stacking eventually becomes an art form. Approaching it like a blank canvas and building out your “Mona Lisa” in the form of a four-piece Astros stack that wins you a tournament. But there are multiple ways to stack, not just one.

Full-Team Stacks: This is generally the approach, in MLB DFS specifically, that people like to take and win tournaments with. On both DraftKings and FanDuel, you fill out your lineup with eight position players. Full-team stacks generally result in 4x4 stacks. If both of those lineups have big days, you’re in a good position to have success. On DraftKings specifically, you can use up to FIVE guys from one lineup if you would like. That is not generally the optimal approach, however.

Full Game Stacks: If there is a game being played and each team is deploying two gas cans, otherwise known as horrible pitchers, you could entirely stack one whole game. You’ll know if that’s a solid approach when you look at the over/under for runs in Vegas and the number is one of the higher marks of the slate.

Stadium Buffs: The title says it all. Why not stack a game that’s being played in an elite hitting environment? 

Mini stacks: If you’re not someone who likes to play a lot of lineups and generally sticks to just one but there are a LOT of teams you want to get exposure to, you could try mini stacks of all of them. 2x2x2x2 to sprinkle in some options from each game. This isn’t as optimal of an approach as some of the others, but sometimes the slate lays itself out for something like this.

There are also specific things we should be looking at and will eventually know by knowing the pitchers in play as well as the ballpark being played at, amongst other things.

Chalk: Approaching the “chalk” of the slate is an age-old debate. Chalk plays represent the most popular plays of that given day and slate. The debate and the talk of the town on every slate are whether the aforementioned chalk is good or bad, which is up for interpretation and is where the research really comes into play. Chalk comes from a lot of different sources.

Pivoting: Pivoting to the lesser rostered player(s) or the “contrarian” option(s) is a very popular approach as well. If a player is in a less-than-ideal match-up, he’ll likely be lower owned than someone in a better match-up. Pivoting to them could give you a leg up on the field if your guy outperformed the other teams’.


What Are MLB DFS Cash Games?

There are several types of games that can be considered “cash games,” but these contests don't tend to be as top-heavy with the prizes like big tournaments. Plus, everyone above the “cash line” receives the same amount of winnings. These can be: 

Double-Ups – In these games, managers are looking to double their entry fee ($2, $10, $109, etc.) and everyone who finishes in the top 44% will double their money.

50/50 – The same concept as Double-Ups, but 50% of the pool wins and you get slightly less than double your money in winnings. The reason this is the case is that the DFS site takes its rake from the game – leaving a $10 50/50 winner to usually win $19, for example.  

Head-to-Head – In these contests, you are competing heads-up against another DFS player. The same rules as 50/50 apply. You will win slightly less than double your money after the rake is removed.

Triple-Ups – In this contest, around a third of the participants will triple their entry fee with everyone receiving the same amount. 

Each will have variants or off-shoots, but these tend to be the most popular cash games. 

How To Build A MLB DFS Cash Lineup

Prioritize the Pitchers

With how much variance there can be around the typical hitting slots in your DFS build, cash-game managers tend to start and prioritize pitching. Why? It is extremely rare for top-level pitchers to get a score of zero or even negative points. For example, take an upper mid-range pitcher like Sonny Gray. In 2022, his worst performance for DFS came on September 19th against the Guardians. In that game, he pitched two innings, gave up five hits with one walk, one strikeout and four earned runs – a truly terrible performance. That ended up being his only negative performance of the year with -3.0 FanDuel points. 

In his other 23 starts, he averaged 29.3.7 FD points per game with half of those games eclipsing 30 fantasy points. In order for a hitter to reach 30 fantasy points on DK, they would need to hit a grand slam plus a single or walk. To get above 30 points, you’re almost talking about needing a double-dong game. 

Since those outcomes are very unlikely for hitters and are much more common for pitchers, we prioritize what even average production can get us from the pitcher spots. Gray had 34.0 points on August 16th allowing two earned runs and striking out six over six innings with a loss. It’s not that hard (or expensive) for a pitcher to get 30 points. 

Plate Appearances Equal Profit

In NBA, the adage is Minutes = Money. That means if you can find guys playing huge minutes at low salaries, they are often the first place to start when building a lineup. Similarly, in baseball, a guy who is batting near the top of the order at a low salary for a team projected to score a lot of runs – that's the first place we should look. 

In addition to looking at teams who are projected to score a lot of runs, batters who have excellent on-base skills are a good place to start – as opposed to mashers who might smack one out of the park once every 10 at-bats. Walks, singles, runs, stolen bases, and doubles all count in DFS and players who can compile these stats for a low salary in your lineups can help add to the floor of the point. The guys who you pay up for can then carry your lineup with an extra power boost. 

The name Jeff McNeil may not be one that gets you out of bed in the morning, but he was one of the best cash-game hitters in the majors in 2022. In his 148 games played, he scored zero points just 26 times (17.5%). His salary on FD was rarely above the upper-$3,000s, but he got you points over 85% of the time he was in the lineup. He only gave you a home run in just 9 of those games, but his OBP ranked 8th in the majors and he led the league with a .326 batting average. He even benefits from hitting in a strong New York Mets lineup.

DFS Strategy Factors to Consider For DFS Hitters and DFS Pitchers

When building your lineups, here is a quick checklist of what to consider on each side of the ball.


  • Salary
  • Ballpark
  • The handedness of batter vs. pitcher
  • Lineup slot
  • wOBA (weighted on-base average) for batters
  • Team projected runs
  • Weather
  • The batter is home or away
  • Batter facing my rostered pitcher?


  • Salary
  • Ballpark
  • Strikeout rate
  • Tendencies of managers
  • The handedness of pitchers vs. opposing lineup
  • Weather
  • wOBA of the opposing lineup
  • Performance of opposing lineup against pitchers’ pitches
  • Typically do not roster opposing pitchers