We know that one of the most popular and successful strategies employed by those winning the Official Mini Fantasy Game of MLB.com on DraftKings is to pair multiple hitters from the same MLB offense -- a tactic known as "stacking." Whether it's a trio of 3-4-5 bats or the maximum six hitters from a single team, stacking works because it increases the upside of your lineup; you get hitters driving in one another for "double-point" run/RBI opportunities. And often, they have the chance to face the same struggling hurler.
If you've played in the Official Mini Fantasy Game of MLB.com and attempted to stack the majority of an offense, you know that it can be difficult at times. When you're dealing with the high-ceiling offenses that everyone wants to own -- the Blue Jays, Tigers, and so on -- the collective salaries of the hitters make it basically impossible to fit them all into your lineup; you either need to go really cheap with both pitchers, which is an obviously risky maneuver, or you need to figure something else out.
With that said, here are a few tips for stacking lineups without breaking the bank.
Want to play Ian Kinsler, Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez and Austin Jackson in the same lineup? Good luck finding the salary cap space to do it.
If you think the Tigers' offense is a good play on a given night but can't find the necessary cap space to fit all of the big bats into your lineup without compromising too much elsewhere, consider moving down in the pecking order a bit. Ideally, you want your hitters at the top of the lineup, but those hitting near the bottom tend to have cheaper salaries.
If you sub in Alex Avila for Victor Martinez, for example, that single move will open up a lot of room elsewhere. Note that this strategy works best when you like an entire offense against a particular pitcher, as opposed to targeting individuals who you believe have great matchups.
Search for lineup changes
You don't always need to target bottom-of-the-order bats to save money. Sometimes, players move up in the order far enough to offer a lot of value.
For example, Rajai Davis hits all over the Detroit lineup. But regardless of whether he's hitting second or ninth, he will typically be priced the same on DraftKings. Thus, one of the best ways to find value on an expensive offense is to target them when there's a cheap option who's been bumped toward the top of the lineup for that day.
There's no rule that says you need to use a six-man stack to win a tournament. If you really like some Detroit bats but can't fit all of them into your lineup, pick your favorites and build around that mini-stack with cheaper value bats elsewhere.
You can even double-up with a pair of mini-stacks -- two trios of hitters from a pair of offenses that you like, for example. In doing so, you can increase upside at a cheap price while also diversifying your selections a bit.
Seek home runs
Finally, when all else fails, look for home runs. Specifically, search for batters who may not be great all-around hitters but can always go yard. Adam Dunn is a cheap option who has two-home-run ability in any given game, for example. Dunn is a great selection in the Official Mini Fantasy Game of MLB.com because he has a high ceiling at a cheap cost. By filling in your lineup with similar high-upside values, you can more easily afford the stack you covet.
Jonathan Bales contributes DraftKings-related content to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.