Team Canada trades away 1B/3B Kevin Cron ($5.50, sadly not cost controlled)
Andrew’s thoughts: As the league’s foremost authority on 1bman, I thought it appropriate that I review Ferns’ latest trade for one. As the kids would say, Ferns is thirsty for 1bman. 💯💦🍹
In the wise words of Jordan Gillis, this trade SEEMS FINE. It is a practically meaningless prospect pick for a trial run of the Diamondbacks starting pinch hitter who murdered minor league pitching. Maybe one day whoever the D’backs manager is lets Kevin Cron play with his friends regularly and he becomes an impact hitter at $7 to keep. Maybe not. But at the cost of a fifth round pick, there’s really no risk. That is the textbook definition of “seems fine.”
For Team Canada, this move frees up a roster spot to stream backup catchers on days where there are only four MLB games. That is truly exciting.
The only loser here is me for having reviewed this trade.
This trade is ok if your hoping for Pomeranz to regain his 30 PPG in seasons 2016/2017. Last year he started 26 games and averaged a measly 9 PPG. This year hasn’t been much better with only one good start and is averaging 18 ppg. With the Giants offence so poor and being in the National League the chances of him going deep in games is slim to none. As for the Otters, Nicky Lopez is a good major league ready player. He is batting .354 with a .426 OBP this year in Omaha and had a good season last year at AAA. Lopez also rank just outside to the Squids top 200 prospect list. The Otters also receiving a 3rd round draft pick is a bonus. The bigger question is, will Bailey have any 2020 draft picks left by the end of the season? Currently, he has four picks left, a 2nd (Jordan) 3rd (Team Canada) and two 5th rounders which aren’t worth much.
The winner to be determine, but pitching is hard to come by so maybe the 2018[and 2017] Points Champion knows more than me, which is probably the case.
Jordan’s thoughts: Without digging deep into this trade. I don’t like this trade for Bailey. Not one bit. Trading away Stanton for starter depth seems like the exact opposite of the type of thing you’d want to do.
I get it, Capital City has to shed salary, perhaps a lot of it. I also get it, there probably was not getting a ton of interest in Stanton. Especially since teams know that Bailey has decisions to make.
Grandal and Belt are valuable pieces. Both guys project to be in the 700-800 point range, which provides a solid starter, Grandal being a catcher is a nice find. But, Stanton is a transcendent talent. Not really overpaid. And he’s gone.
Simply put, using the Jordan Gillis projection simulator (TM) Bailey lost this trade by losing roughly 115 points and Loompas improved their team by roughly 150 points. These points are meaningless and my projection simulator isn’t worth its digital weight in gold. But, those numbers are fun.
I don’t love it for Bailey. For Chris with TL, you have to love the deal. Participating is a good start. Getting a top talent outfielder for a couple of replaceable pieces. Looks pretty great.
I’m glad this trade happens, two teams found some kind of agreement on the value of a guy that needs to be shed. Bailey didn’t lose his ass, and Chris didn’t steal a star talent. I just feel like the deal is still too light.
Hustle’s Toxic $.02: This trade seems fine for both teams.
Bailey had notoriously been shopping high contract guys due to needing to shed some salary, and he did that. The fact that he had shopped guys around for weeks tells me this was either the best deal he could have made or close. Losing Stanton will hurt, but catcher was at least a need and he fills it with one of the best. Brandon Belt struggles to stay healthy and hits in the worst stadium, but at least his Streamer projections are nice. The first round pick is a decent asset. I don’t hate the return, maybe it should have been more. I guess if I had to choose between giving up Stanton or Carrasco, I choose Carrasco, but maybe the offers weren’t strong enough to accomplish that here.
For Trumpa Loompa, adding Stanton is a giant uprgade to their offense now led by Stanton, Machado, and Steven Duggar. Finding a replacement for Grandal won’t be easy, but Stanton’s points should make up for that. Their next step should be to find a way to add some strong pitching and this team could contend for the playoffs.
Looking strictly at the big picture, these teams constructed their rosters in a way to make moves like this not only possible, but in cases like this a necessity. When we make trades in fantasy baseball, we are not only trading players, draft picks, and auction cash, but we are trading away ideas. The idea here is simple, 1) state your needs 2) find a common ground and 3) execute rational decision making. The decision making we see here in Stanton for smaller contracts and a pick is a perfect example of what we s like to call “trading”. It’s a beautiful thing.
Jordan’s thoughts: Prospect for prospect trades are always mildly interesting. Sure, some are better than others, but we’re basically trading guys positioned on opinion lists for each other. We don’t get to scout or know anything more about these players than the writers who are interpreting what they see, or worse, what other people say they are seeing.
That being said, Luis Patino according to the hive-mind at FanGraphs.com was ranked 60th on the prospect list at one point. He’s a 50 FV prospect with a high risk and estimated 2023 debut. I understand that since that ranking his stock has improved. Okay. He is listed at 6’0 150 lb. I get called quite skinny, and I’m 5’4 145lb. Yeesh.
Pache is ranked higher on the list I have. Again probably outdated. 60 FV, 18th on the top 100. Without digging deeper, perhaps his stock is high because of defensive value. While we don’t get points for defense, we do get points for players that play and typically great defenders get lots of chances to learn how to hit.
Gavin Lux has been traded for a second time and he’s still a 45 FV prospect who apparently is climbing some charts. He hit well in AA last year.
Everyone wins this trade because trades are fun.
Andrew’s thoughts: I’m not prepared to argue either side of this trade is better than the other, so good for both teams. I think Cristian Pache is probably the highest “ranked” guy, but all the scouting reports I’ve read suggest to me that he’s all defense and speed and maybe you’re lucky if he’s Kevin Pillar or Kevin Kiermaier, well, that’s not particularly relevant to our scoring. But if he can hit at even a league average level for centerfield, well, at zero cost, maybe that’s useful.
Patino, meanwhile, just seems forever away. Remember Anderson Espinoza from a few years back? He was the next Pedro Martinez until he got hurt and fell off the face of the planet. Personally, I tend to devalue pitching prospects with long lead times. This seems to me like Long Ball is betting on Patino climbing prospect lists so that he can flip him for something better.
But whatever. This trade seems fine to me overall.
Andrew’s thoughts: I love this trade for Marshall Law so, so much. It reminds me of the real-life Nationals/Rays/Padres trade for Trea Turner, where the Nats basically crashed a trade between the Rays and Padres and came away with the most appealing talent. Marshall gave up what I see as four lukewarm assets (Taveras seems like a low power guy whose speed doesn’t matter as much in our scoring; the other three pieces are pure lotto tickets) to get back two young, cheap impact pieces in Nimmo and Winker and a decent flier on Lamet, who was solid in 2017 before requiring Tommy John. Honestly, I’d rather have Nimmo or Winker alone than Bumgarner at $60 to keep or the package WBFD received.
For WBFD though, I get it. At $60, Bumgarner was a very likely cut as we’ve seen his skills and health begin to descend, and now there are even rumors he may be traded out of his hugely favorable home park. Steamer projections have Bumgarner as the 17th highest scoring pitcher for 2019, but that honestly seems a little rich to me. I’m just a little surprised he didn’t get the Nimmo/Winker package here. But if you’re going to cut a guy anyway, getting four zero-cost pieces like this is clearly better long-term.
And as for We Talk Fantasy Sports, well, I applaud the continued aggressive addition to try and compete in 2019. First it was Corey Kluber, then Dallas Keuchel, now Bumgarner. Still, while their pitching is very, very much improved, I look at that offense and wonder if it can possibly keep up. Losing Nimmo and Winker gives them two pretty big starting hitting holes, in my opinion, and Bumgarner might need to be prime Mad-Bum just to offset that.
Jordan’s thoughts: My goal here is to be the creme filling in this turd sandwich of a trade review. Obviously I have a hard on for Jesse Winker who I drafted with my first round pick back in our first minor league draft. He seems good now and the Reds let Billy Hamilton go.
I agree that projections have soured on Madison Bumgarner and that is not completely hard to understand. However, I’ll disagree with with figurative “buns” and say that Bumgarner at $60 is more than fair and particularly attractive. I think if you’re on top and have a salary crunch, perhaps you have a different perspective on market value.
I love the trade for Marshall Law and We Talk Fantasy Sports here. Marshall Law showing how a rebuild in this league should work. You build a core with current rising talent vs sacking a whole number of seasons for a wish and a hope. Which is what I think the WBFDs has done here. I don’t mind turning MadBum into a bunch of pieces. But the draft picks aren’t helping you soon, and the prospects are okay. Perhaps you get a good pitcher and a decent outfielder out of it in a season or two and perhaps those prospects turn into something too. But, odds are actually against you.
I think with any game you want to position yourself to win and a key step is identifying your win condition(s). WTFS appears to have found theirs with identifying needing a front line starter to help sway weeks in a head-to-head format. It works. ML identified needing to acquire useful assets while still acquiring points. Say these guys blossom, and you’re a piece or two away, they have assets they could push the chips in. It can work. WBFD identified needing to wait another three years. Has that worked ever?
Hustle’s Toxic $0.02: Well this was a super fun trade. I think in all my years of playing fantasy sports I’ve seen very few if any other legit three way trades. So for that, I applaud the ability to pull it off. I am truly inspired.
For WFBD: I think Gaut did OK here if you subscribe to the notion that Bumgarner is in a big decline. Streamer projects a near 4 ERA, FIP, and XFIP for Bumgarner in 2019 which makes a $60 investment in that subpar to say the least. If Bumgarner gets traded those numbers would have to be worse, unless its to the Astros. If Bumgarner is the guy he is projected to be, then getting a couple pieces for him seems fine. Gaut will have $60 to spend on Mike Leake and Mike Leake accessories in the auction as well as a couple neat picks. I’m not a fan of Taveras (as I stated in the first Taveras deal this offseason), seems like a long shot in being better than a replacement level OF here. I do think I like Bukauskas better than most so thats cool too. Getting some assets for a guy who should be borderline be cut based on performance seems like a good idea. If Bumgarner bounces back, Gaut may wonder if he could have gotten a bit more.
For WTFS: As Bailey stated, Keith’s rotation is much improved. Even if Bumgarner isn’t peak he’s still startable almost every time out. The team’s rotation went from arguably worst to above average through a course of trades this offseason, so that is indeed commendable. The offense is a work in progress and will be more difficult to fill after giving away two cheap promising OFers. Choo and Blackmon are nice OFers to have, but after that it kinda falls off. 1b, 3b, one OF and 2 UTIL spots have to be occupied by Sano, Shaw, Desmond, Happ, Calhoun, I’m not sure who the next best hitter is after these 5. Having these guys as starters in your lineup seems incredibly risky since 4/5 of them were a minus at their position last year. Keith will have to find someway to supplant this either by trade or auction. This team at least had a direction now and with proper attention could push for a playoff spot.
For ML: There’s a lot to like here. Winker could potentially be the best asset in the whole trade. as a $3 cost controlled OF batting near the top of the Reds lineup. If las year is any indication he’s a very solid OF to have and if his power trends up he’s potentially a beast. I think Nimmo was obviously tremendously underrated going into last season and was one of the best pickups of the year, but I think he could be a tad overrated in 2019. That being said, he seems like he has the floor of being perfectly acceptable OF depth, which is valuable. I think getting the Lamet flier is the perfect thing a rebuilding team should be doing, ad as a 3rd piece of a deal, seems great. I think these 3 pieces are probably better than a 1/2 rounder and Bukauskas, not a guarantee, but I love the odds.
Senior Squids trades away
SP Kyle Wright
SP Michel Baez
Andrew’s thoughts: It wasn’t that long ago that Kyle Wright and Michael Baez were the centerpiece acquisitions of Senior Squids’ 2018 teardown. Now here they are, flipped for A.J. Pollock in a somewhat surprising win-now move.
I like this move for the Diabeetuses. I’m not necessarily a big fan of Kyle Wright or Michel Baez, but they’re pitchers and will be cheap, ergo inherent value. Wright has a lot of rotation competition in Atlanta and Baez has some pretty serious reliever risk. But still, as pitching prospects go, these are good ones. Also, I’m pretty sure when Gaut got around to participating in cuts, Pollock was going to get the axe.
Here are Pollock’s net points the last five seasons, working from 2018 back: 630.4, 644.8, 61.3, 1070.5, 437.6. In a vacuum, I really like Pollock as a player and asset in this league. I do. But he hasn’t cracked 650 points in four of the last five years and was last a fantasy star in 2015. That was actually the only year he was ever a fantasy star. He’s great on a rate basis, but he’s such an abnormally high injury risk and you have to wonder if the so-so 2018 line was the humidor in Arizona or the combination of age and wear and tear. Maybe he signs in Cincinnati and has one more 1,000+ point year in the tank, or maybe Adam Jones nets more points than him again over a full season simply because Pollock can’t stay on the field. Who knows? For $48 and two pretty valuable pitching prospects, I think I’d really want to gamble on a safer player. I do like that another team is making moves that help right now though.
Hustle’s Toxic $0.02: AJ Pollock is a good useful OF in our format, not elite, but good. The fact that Arizona had a humidor last year means the chances of Pollock signing with a less desirable ballpark than his current is lower than it would have been the previous year.
For WFBD, this is clearly a good move. Moving away an expensive non elite OF for 2 established name pitching prospects are a big boost for his farm. I think scouts have soured on Baez’s ability to remain a starter, so I don’t hate moving him. Wright is currently blocked by a ton of ATL pitchers, but I personally don’t care about players who are blocked, I care about good players. If Kyle Wright is a good player, he will find a way to starts whether on the Braves or elsewhere. Furthermore, the recent rule changes makes prospects a little less risky because you can still maintain a $0 year if a guy comes up and does very little, which seems to be what Kyle Wright is in line for in 2019. Gaut just needs one of these guys to be an average starter for this trade to give him some value, and a chance to really get something if both do or either guy becomes a plus starter.
For Squids, he has the budget and adding a good player will certainly help his chances for this year. With Honeywell and Whitley in his farm, he probably thinks these guy were expendable, and I don’t disagree that they are/should be. I’m not sure Pollock is the guy you want to cash in for, but I certainly leave open the possibility that he could be. Everyone evaluates players differently.
At the very least this was an inspiring trade. The only concern I have is how much more participation Gaut has left allocated for the season.
P Tyler Phillips (prospect)
P Ramon Rosso (prospect)
Jordan’s thoughts: I owned stock in Kendrys Morales late last season in a different league and he went on to hit homers in eight straight games during a playoff run. It was neat. Overall last season Morales was pretty poor for a 1B/UT player. He’s not expensive, not a drain on your roster, but apparently he hits better blind.
This deal literally cost Bailey nothing. These pitcher prospects boast FVs of 40 and 35+ and neither are top 20 for their respective teams. They’re below AA and while something could get them on the hype train, it’s not a shoe in.
I like this deal for Bailey. Even if he cuts Morales prior to the draft, he gave up nothing. If he keeps Morales, it probably means he got a decent haul for Nelson Cruz. Win win for him. I assume Keith sees something in one or both guys to be excited about the deal. If so great good for him too.
Hustle’s Toxic $.02
This is probably the worst trade off the offseason so far. Keith managed to trade away a much cheaper better Kendrys Morales for nothing while giving away some small but actual assets for a much more expensive much shittier Ian Desmond. I would rather have a 2nd round pick, Clint Frazier, OR Kendrys Morales than Ian Desmond, Ramon Rosso, or Tyler Phillip. It’s not even close really. If I had all 3 of the latter pieces, I would BUNDLE them for any one of the three former in a heartbeat.
The prospects here are truly useless. I can’t imagine what Bailey said or Keith read to have needed these guys. Between Rosso and Phillips you’re looking at a 20 % one of them is a bad pitcher in the majors in 2-3 years, which is an asset in abundance on the waiver wire. Meanwhile Morales has value as a bat who you can start at 1B or in either of your two utility spots vs righties. Morales had a monster 2nd half and while he’s no spring chicken and could decline, the price was right compared to other guys acquired this offseason for WTFS.
If you read my review of Kremer for Zimmerman, this is like that but worse because Keith paid assets earlier for a much worse and more expensive 1b than either Morales/Zimmerman and at the same time managed to get a worse pitching prospect than the 4th best Orioles pitching prospect. I’d have Kremer ahead of Rosso just because at least he’s in AA and was a Dodger at one point. In no way am I writing off the careers of Rosso or Phillips, heck I owned Phillips once, but these are no different than guys who can be picked up at will or with 5th round picks.
TBD trades away
1B Ryan Zimmerman ($7)
Trust the Process trades away
SP Dean Kremer
Andrew’s Thoughts: As of this morning Trust the Process has changed their team name to something different (sad and disappointing), which tells you just about all you need to know about “The Process.” Anyway…
I remember last off-season, I had Ryan Zimmerman on my roster coming off a .387 wOBA season and 14 other owners told me he was a worthless turd. The one owner that didn’t was Joe from TBD. That Joe, I tell ya, he’s a smart cookie, as evidenced by locking up two seasons (so far!) of elite JD Martinez on someone else’s dime. Fast forward to today, and I’m pumped to see Abandon the Process adding a player that 14 people thought sucked a year ago in exchange for An Orioles Pitching Prospect™ (they’re all the same, no need for names). Zimmerman was good last year too, but also injured yet again. The projections like him. I’d rather have Zimmerman for 300 plate appearances before he hits the DL than An Orioles Pitching Prospect™ and it isn’t even close.
Fun side note: Ryan Zimmerman has won back-to-back Dynasty Grinders League Championships. He won for me in 2017 and TBD in 2018. That streak will end in 2019, obviously, but still, a cool footnote.
Hustle’s Toxic $0.02: I really like this trade for the Process. It’s rare I strongly prefer the other side of a TBD deal. Locking up a decent 1b hitter who will only cost $7 in 2018 seems wise. Who cares if he only plays half a season? Who cares if he tears his ACL in the first month? You only spent 7 bucks on him and only gave up the Orioles 4th best pitching prospect when the trade would have been just as low risk had Ferns traded their best one.
For the now Josh led TBD squad, I get what he’s trying to do. Add a prospect he likes for a guy he was going to cut. By no means is this a franchise shattering trade, or a trade that will come back in the slightest to haunt them… It just helps out The Process more with almost no downside. In the end, there’s an excellent chance Kremer gets cut and Zimmerman spends the bulk of the season on the DL.
Organized Chaos trades away
RF Nick Markakis ($4)
Trust the Process trades away
SP Frankie Montas ($5)
Andrew’s Thoughts: Oh man, I’m pumped and flattered. The Process has reunited Ryan Zimmerman and Nick Markakis from the 2017 Dynasty Grinders League Champion and World Points Champion of the World Capital City Incomee. What a time to be alive. You know what they say: imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I am truly beside myself this morning.
After two years of campaigning that Markakis was a valuable asset in our league, he went above and beyond to prove me right in 2018. Here are his monthly wOBAs for the first four months of the season: .379, .394, .341, .362. Wow! That’s good. Sadly, he closed out the year with marks of .294 and .297. Womp womp.
Regardless, I’d rather have Markakis than Montas, I think. Is Montas even going to be in the rotation? To be clear, pitching depth is valuable. But if he’s a reliever, he’s worthless. I think personal favoritism toward Markakis aside, this is probably a coin flip trade. And I get “selling high” on Markakis if you could, but this isn’t it. Markakis represents a massive lineup upgrade for Question the Process. And I’m not even referring to those monster wOBA months. If Markakis can limp along to a .294 or .297 wOBA all year, he’d still be a huge upgrade over having Lewis Brinson in the lineup.
Hustle’s Toxic $0.02: I’m not sure how to feel about this trade. Markakis is potentially a serviceable replacement OF and Montas is a bad cheap pitcher (under $10 though, Hustle Rule (TM) ). I think if you’re counting on either to be a major contributor on your team in 2019, you should be prepared for disappointment. As a depth piece, both are fine. Assuming Montas is in the rotation and Markakis is a lineup regular, they are both fine to roster. Assuming those two things, they probably go for more in auction than their keeper price, but not much more. The auction projects to be barren, but with the recent trade activity, it seems like less cash will be taken into it so maybe prices will be a little better than last year Ferns is trying to assemble Bailey’s team from 2 years ago, Bailey is trying to assemble my team from 2 years ago, and in reviewing this shitty trade, I’m just trying to stay as toxic I was 2 years ago.
Long ball to LF (Johnnywise) trades away SP Duffy, Danny $10 2020 Draft Pick, Round 2 (Long ball to LF (Johnnywise))
The Foundation trades away
SS Lux, Gavin
Hustle’s Toxic $.02I rather have Lux than Danny Duffy, who ended his season with a shoulder impingement. That being said, thats probably a my team sort of thing. Jordan went into last season with Gio Gonzalez as his staff ace and not a whole much behind it. Getting Duffy and Ivan Nova to keep for under $20 seems like a massive improvement. Neither are Aces (and I’ll let Bailey review the Nova deal) but both are quite useful in this league.
Maybe everyone is afraid of the auction this year so they spend their money before, but if I walked away from last season’s auction with a healthy Duffy and Nova for $19 I would have been dancing. I’d say every team needs about 8-10 starters, so approximately 144 should be owned. These two guys have both shown at times they could be weekly starts and their spots in their own major league rotation are pretty safe. I’m not going to do a pitchers rankings, but both guys are somewhere between 70-120 best pitchers with a chance to leap that in a good season.
Lux is a nice prospect, might have been The Foundation’s best one, so that’s a little tough to see parted with for Duffy, but Jordan’s team should be able to compete better next year. As a Dodger Fan, I naturally like Lux. Posting a 147 WRC+ across two levels last year including make it to AA, he could be a modest power hitting middle infielder for the Dodgers in 202 with a very good approach.
Andrew’s thoughts: I’m not a big Danny Duffy fan, but it’s hard to quibble too much over a decent pitcher under $10. And Duffy’s decent. He’s just got a bunch of injury flags and he’s not a guy you’ll ever totally trust from start to start. For Jordan, this seems like a fine investment. Getting the second round pick also softens the blow of losing whatever Gavin Lux is as a prospect. I suspect you can get a comparable prospect with that pick.
For Long Ball, Lux likely just has more future trade value than Duffy, and he’s got enough pitching so as to not really need Duffy anyway. Worst case, he’s out a useful but not spectacular pitcher and instead has a future cost controlled asset, which will pay dividends if he can then surround them with salary dumps in exchange for inferior players or turd prospects.
Hustle Loyalty Respect trades away 2019 Draft Pick, Round 4 (Capital City Ironmen)
Nova, Ivan $9
The Foundation trades away
Andrew’s thoughts: It’s a Christmas miracle! Ivan Nova finally got traded!
Trade seems fine to me. Hustle dumps a pitcher he’s wanted to dump for two years for a guy in the Lewis Brinson mold (“toolsy but terrible at baseball”) and The Foundation upgrades his pitching staff dramatically by adding a guy another team wanted to dump on someone else for two years. Win-win!