Last week, I congregated some fantasy and baseball writers with the objective of doing a league with similar characteristics to the Tout Wars H2H or LABR. A 12-team snake draft, head-to-head with 5×5 scoring categories and 2 catchers.

With the influx of fantasy basketball and football, the head-to-head leagues is a format increasing in popularity. (Which is why if you play in these leagues, check out the “Getting Ahead” series.) If you play head-to-head leagues, they offer a different way to play than Roto leagues, and it requires a different strategy. The league functions are essentially the same as the standard “rotisserie” style. However, instead of adding the accrued statistics and ranking each column as you would in a standard rotisserie league, each individual category is counted as a win, loss or tie. In a league using 10 categories, teams will rack up some combination of 10 wins, losses and ties per week. The head-to-head style of play lends itself perfectly to stocking a pitching staff with multiple relievers. Grabbing an elite reliever, such as Craig Kimbrel or Kenley Jansen, instead of a fourth or fifth starter may allow an owner in a head-to-head league to eke out wins in multiple categories.

In traditional rotisserie leagues, the production of some relievers may not be enough. They may log solid ERA, WHIP or strikeout totals, but their total number of innings pitched may not weight heavily in the overall statistics. Nevertheless, this is a very useful strategy in H2H, giving you the opportunity to obtain wins in saves, ERA, and WHIP with middle and late round players.

For the first time, and some research, this was my key strategy in my drafts this season. Trying to grab a couple of elite relievers between rounds 4 to 8. I drafted Robert Osuna with the pick 56 and Aroldis Chapman with the 65. And in late rounds Andrew Miller (161), Chad Green (224) and Chris Devenski (272).

Please, blog, may I have some more?