Im back into fantasy baseball after 4 year break. Before the break I had played 2 years Roto and 2 years H2H and I have to say I like H2H way better. I think it is more engaging on a week to week basis, and it also makes the middle to lower tiered owners still pay attention and care more so than Roto.
For the fantasy veterans.. what are some of the strategical differences in the management of your team in H2H compared to Roto? Any opinions/discussions would be great.
A lot of luck in H2H depending on your match-ups for the week. Not much luck in roto - no weekly resets for stats as in H2H. Playoffs in H2H allow weaker teams to beat stronger teams if they get a few hot players. But, it keeps even the weaker teams still in the game through the season.
Strategy-wise, the biggest difference for me is whether or not to start borderline starters vs strong offenses - in roto a stinky start lingers all season in your WHIP/ERA.
I've played both and vastly prefer roto. To each their own. I think in H2H, I'm a lot less worried about quality stats AVG, ERA, WHIP than I am about counting stats. H2H may engage the casual fan more because each week is a game unto itself and you have a particular opponent. People with a fantasy football background may also prefer this format. Roto is more of a pure game where everything counts and every stat is important. H2H is like an MLB team navigating through playoff series, whereas Roto is like an MLB team winning their division.
In roto drafts, I like to pick hitters early that are going to protect my ratio categories. I want .300+ hitters with power with my early picks. I figure I can find guys who will hit 20 HRs or steal 20 bases, but those guys are more likely to be a drain on my batting average than the guys in whom I had to invest a lot of draft value. Ditto pitchers- I want guys who will log quality innings. Depending on the innings limit, K rate might also be a big concern, but ratios are always paramount to me. I definitely don't want to pay for premium closers. I don't want to pay for saves, which can usually be found by working the waiver wire, and while the best closers have good/great ratios, you have to remember that they are weighted over a much smaller number of innings. I can live with a 3.50ish ERA from my pool of closers and that's about what I'd expect to get from my cheap late round closers/waiver wire pickups while they're earning saves for my team. I'd rather take care of my ERA/WHIP by investing heavily in starting pitchers who will post a high volume (200+) quality innings and content myself with my closers merely holding serve, so to speak.
The H2H leagues I play in are weekly leagues, which I think is the best way to go. As such I have little use for platoon players. Matt Joyce, Mark Trumbo, Chipper Jones, Todd Helton, and Luke Scott are guys I have on various teams that allow daily lineup changes. They have plenty of value in these leagues when you have other options to slide in for them when they get a couple of days off each week. In a daily lineup league, you can platoon them and field a full lineup card each day, but in H2H with weekly changes you don't have that luxury.
Even so, I don't do the "quirky strategy" thing in H2H. I still approach the draft and subsequent FA pickups with the idea of putting together the best possible well-rounded team and it has served me pretty well. The main difference is in scouting your opponent and using a lineup best suited to capitalize on their weaknesses. Your best overall lineup may be one where Dee Gordon plays shortstop, but you might be up against an opponent who really doesn't have any base stealers. Maybe you slide in a Mike Aviles if you figure you're going to win the SB category easily and need more across the board production. Ditto saves. You don't need to start all 4 of your closers if your opponent only has 1 or 2. A lot of categories can be won just by paying attention to these kinds of things.