Dynasty Grinders Deep Dive Minor League Draft / Waiver Wire Pickups

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I thought I would do a deep dive into Dynasty Grinders Minor League Draft for our new friends that have joined the league this year. The minor league draft can be a crap shoot, especially the 3rd, 4th and 5th rounds. I’m not a big fan in obtaining later round picks in the draft. Usually they are just thrown ins to make the trade look better, you will see with the deep dive. 

 

The main reason TBD and HLR can acquire players like Glasnow and Castillo is because they are professional prospectors. I do think Glasnow and Castillo trades were a little lite going the other way considering the ages and salaries of both player.  I will guarantee you that TBD and HLR will restock quickly but it will get harder if everyone Grinds as hard as they do. The league will be going to 40 prospects this year, that’s 640 prospects. In 2023 the league will reach 50 prospects, that’s 800 players, that’s a lot of prospects and probably a lot of streaming of prospects.  

 

I used the Senior Squids Prospect Spreadsheet as my reference, the spreadsheet probably not as good as Hustle Media but you try to learn from the best, right? Dynasty Grinders has been around since 2016. The first year we drafted ten prospects each, good information can be gleaned  from the draft but not in the later rounds because we were  only drafting 160 players. I concentrated 2017 and 2018 drafts where the draft pooled increased 240 and 320 players respectively.  

 

A couple items: MLB/DM (DM = difference makers, Tatis types) category are drafted players that have made their MLB debut, don’t be fool with the category, just because the player fulfilled their dream making the majors doesn’t mean that are valuable fantasy assets. Can you say Daniel Gosset? 

 

Finally, the prospect ranking 1-10, 11-50, 51-100, 101-200,  200 and up.  I also went to the Dynasty Grinders Fantrax pages and to see who was picked up  off the waiver wire during the last four years. For the new owners this is where you need to grind and fine that hidden jewel and as you will see there were some crazy good players that were never drafted and plucked off the waiver wire.  

 

2016 Draft

Busts: 

1-7  Lewis Brinson, didn’t he just get traded for the 10th time last week? 

1-11 AJ Reed

2-6  Jose De Leon, yea I traded for him. 

 

Bam: 

1-1 Yoan Moncada 

1-4 Tyler Glasnow

1-13 Blake Snell

 

Wow, I drafted him that late, okay then. 

5.3 Jack Flaherty 

8.1 Matt Chapman

9.5 Walker Buehler, now this is a crazy one, he was drafted in 2016 and dropped and redrafted in the second round in 2017. Great grinding by TBD. 

12.3 Sandy Alcantra, yea I traded for him and  traded him away too. Yea another stupid trade. 

Wow Waiver Wire Pickups

Hunter Dozier, Royals, he was picked up and dropped a few times, including me. 

Juan Soto, Nationals, nice job Long Ball

Max Muncy Dodgers, first Dusty and he dropped him and of course HLR picked him up. HLR is huge Dodger fan. If you don’t know the fantasy owners favorite teams your missing out. I’m a sucker for the Mariners and I will pay a high price for JRod. 

Cristian Pache, Braves, another Longball pickup

Mitch Keller, Pirates, another TBD pickup

 

2017 Draft

Busts: 

Honestly the whole 1st rounds sucked!

1-1 Kevin Maitan, yea #1 player, I believe we was the best player on the board before the draft but I think he got his money and got fat and lazy. Most prospect web sites don’t have him ranked anymore. Hey, Boobs you have a 1st overall pick on your team. 

1-3 Cory Ray

1-4 Blake Rutherford

1-5 Mickey Moniak

1-6 Delvin Perez

1-7 Jason Groom

I could go on……. 

Bam: 

2-4 Walker Buehler, nice pick up TBD

2-11 Luis Castillo

3-6 Fernando Tatis,  HLR unfortunately traded him for a bag of balls. 

Wow I drafted him that late, okay then. 

4-1 Jesus Luzardo

5-16 Dinelson Lamet, HLR, yep the last player taken and yea he traded him too. 

Wow Waiver Wire Pickups

Shane Bieber, Indians, yep you read that right, the best pitcher in the league was never drafted. What does that tell the new owners? You need to grind. 

Ronald Acuna, Braves, 8.86 ppg.  Long Ball  hits the jackpot again, Acuna and Soto are the corner stone of his team. 

 

MLB/DM 1-10 11-50 51-100 101-200 200 and Up
2017 1 Round 10/0 0 0 0 0 6
2 Round 7/2 1 1 1 0 6
3 Round 9/1 1 1 0 0 5
4 Round 8/1 0 0 0 0 7
5 Round 6 0 0 0 0 10

 

  • Difference Makers: Buehler, Castillo, Luzardo and Tatis. 

 

2018 Draft

It’s probably a little early to write about Bust, Bams and Wows  but…….

Busts: 

1-7 Brendan McKay, Rays, shoulder surgery in Aug 2020, drafting pitching is always risky. 

1-8 Kyle Wright, Braves, yep that was me, 

1-11 Alex Faedo Tigers, another pitcher with arm issues too

Bam: 

1.1 Luis Robert, White Sox, Roberts made it to the  show pretty quick

2.9 Wander Franco, 1# prospect in the league, however he biceps and shoulder issues, at least he’s not a pitcher. 

Wow I drafted him that late, okay then.

5-2 Vidal Brujan, Rays, Top 50 prospect

5-10 Sean Murphy, A’s, made it to the show and is a top ten catcher, I believe catchers are the hardest position to fill because they usually can’t hit. 

3-13 Will Smith, another productive catcher and he might be the best catcher in 2021

Waiver Wire Pickups

Bobby Dalbac impressive first year with 7.11 PPG, dropped by Longball, TBD picked him up and traded him to Organized Chaos.  

Gavin Lux top 50 prospect who made his debut in 2020

Cavin Biggo with a 6.24 PPG  and of course I had him on my team at one time. 

Spencer Howard, Top 50 prospect, yep I finally got a good waiver pick up. 

 

MLB/DM 1-10 11-50 51-100 101-200 200 and Up
2018 1 Round 7/1 1 1 1 2 4
2 Round 5 1 2 8
3 Round 7/1 1 1 7
4 Round 3 2 1 1 9
5 Round 4 1 11

 Difference Makers: Luis Robert and Will Smith

 

2019 Draft

Again probably a little early to write about Bust, Bams and Wows. 

Busts: 

1-2 Jonathen India, Reds, is TBD actually human? India’s stock has fell since being drafted as he”s dropped out of the many of the  top 200 prospects list but it is TBD and India is still young. 

1-11 Victor Victor Mesa, Marlins,  Mesa is out on most experts top 300 prospects list 

Bam: 

3-3 Noelvi Marte,  Mariners  Top 25 prospect but it’s still early

Wow I drafted him that late, okay then.

5-10 Dylan Carlson Cardinals, nice pick up by the Beach Bums, top ten prospect, however struggle in the short MLB season. 

Waiver Wire Pickups

Mitch Garver, Twins, but is he for real? A 29 year old catcher with 7.2 PPG in 2019 but Ryan Jeffers might have taken his place as the starting catcher?  

Gio Urshela , Yankees, picked up by Ferns than dropped and picked by TBD and traded to Marshall Plan. Urshela scored 6 PPG in 2020. 

I didn’t find any other good pick ups except a bunch of relief pitchers claims by HLR, in 2019 HLR had 542 waiver claims which I think is a Dynasty Grinders record.  

 

Observations 

Prospects are the key to success in any dynasty league and especially in Dynasty Grinders. If you don’t grind prospects don’t expect to win a championships anytime soon.  Prospects and the waiver wire is where you need to grind. 

First round picks are huge, especially the top 5 or 6 picks. In our league 80% of the first round picks make the major leagues, second rounders 60% and third rounders 40%. I’m not fan of obtaining 4th and 5th rounders in trades, they are like candy corn and are only good for about five minutes. As you can see only a hand full of 4th and 5th rounders hit. You would be better off grinding the waiver wire.  

Remember when you obtain a first rounder from one of the top teams it’s really an early 2nd rounder and how many 2nd rounders hit, maybe 60%. There has been some good second rounders that hit like Buehler and Castillo who were just traded.  

Drafting pitchers is always a risk for two reasons, injuries and will the pitcher become a bullpen arm. Additionally drafting high school / international players are also a risk because of their age and their development (Maitan). HLR has been very successful in that department, I’m wondering if he would be willing to share his secret sauce, probably not.   

The waiver wire is where you can make up some ground but it takes a lot of grinding. Long Ball is the king by picking up Acuna and Soto.  HLR is the king of roster claims with a record of 542 claims in 2019, however make sure you watch your FAAB budget. Additionally,  watch the prospect experts in the league, sometimes they drop prospects they don’t have room for but you might. 

Finally, there is plenty of free prospects web sites to visit. A few sites have a pay wall but worth the $5 a month price.  If any of you like podcasts there are plenty out there that are both informational and entertaining.

Trade: Suplex City I Pine Mountain Podstars

Washington Nationals: Victor Robles Crushing Division Rivals

Suplex City 

gets Nick Lodolo , Miguel Yajure, 3rd round pick (2023)

Pine Mountain Podstars

gets Victor Robles

 

Take a look back at 2017 MLB top 100 prospects list. #3 on the list is our main man Victor Robles, he is followed by Vladdy, Eloy and Acuna. He was “the man” and then along came Juan Soto out of nowhere to be the man child who took Washington by storm. Soto, Vlad, Eloy and Acuna have left Robles in the dust and its easy to forget how highly touted he was.

Who is Victor Robles? I’m pretty sure he isn’t Lewis Brinson, but he sure looked like it in 2020. In 2019 he was 22 years old and hit 17 hr’s stole 28 bases, with a lackluster line of .255/.326/.419. It’s wasn’t great but he was only 22. Then in 2020 at age 23 in 168 at bats the offense was worse. k rate was up, bb rate was down, ISO was down. I’m still holding out hope and giving him another year but his star is dimming. If he puts up another 2020 line then you probably aren’t getting Nick Lodolo.

Do we really know anything about Lodolo?  I know he was a first round pick that was supposedly polished and advanced , but we only have a meaningless micro sample in pro ball to go on. He was the first pitcher drafted in 2019 , so you would have to assume good things.  I sure didn’t know much about Yajure.  He was an international sign for a small bonus of 30,000 but has pitched quite well and made his debut out of the bullpen. Going forward if he continues to be a relief pitcher than there isn’t much to see here, but most of what I read says he has a floor of a 5th starter. 

Definitely selling somewhat low on Robles here, but anyone who buys stocks knows its better to sell low than hold and watch all your value disappear. You have to know what you hold. If it was me I would have a hard time letting Robles go and would be holding and hoping he figures things out as I think the ceiling is still high, but in turning him into 2 near mlb ready pitchers there is potential this trade works out for either team or both. 2021 will tell us more.

 

Trade: Marshall Law | Long Ball to LF

Marshall Law trades away

$5 Auction budget 2020
2021 Draft Pick, Round 4 (Marshall Law)
2020 Draft Pick, Round 3 (The Process)

Long ball to LF (Johnnywise) trades away
Taillon, Jameson ($22)

 

hustle’s toxic $0.02

Really like this trade for Marshall. First and foremost, he gave up nothing. The picks are largely irrelevant. There should be a good sleeper available in the middle of round 3, but is LeavittBall going to be able to nab that one guy? History and track record says probably not.  Marshall is committing $22 in Taillon’s salary for 2020 and $5 as a sweetener to LB for the right to own Taillon for $24 in 2021.

I think if Taillon was healthy and in auction for 2020, he probably goes above $50.  Pirates cleaning house and having a new pitching coach can only be a plus for all Pirates pitching.  Chances are you aren’t spending under $25 in auction and getting a good SP to keep. Last year I think Domingo German was probably the only pitcher in that range that actually seems like a great keep for 2020, and even he might have trouble getting a rotation spot.

Anyway, it’s a good allocation of basically $27 budget  for Marshall, even if he won’t see meaningful points until 2021.   Taillon won’t even count as a roster spot because he’ll have precious IL eligibility. There’s even a non zero chance that Taillon gets Marshall some meaningful points in September.

For LeavitBall, I’m not quite sure what to make of this. The $5 in theory gives him more ammunition to get a big name in auction, and I’m sure if that’s the plan, other moves for cash are probably in the pipeline. That being said, I’m not sure giving up an actual asset for a mid round pick and $5 makes much sense regardless of the plan. This seems more confusing to me because LeavittBall has plenty of budget due to his 2 best moves in DynastyGrinders history 1) Picking up Ronald Acuna of the waiver wire and 2) Picking up Juan Soto off the waiver wire.  My guess is Leavitt was anxious to trade and Marshall was the only one willing to play ball. I think some of the other teams who have a lot of budget and have publicly/privately declared themself out for 2020, would have benefitted from a $24 Taillon in 2021.   Keith, if you’re reading this review, let me know.

Anyway, this trade ultimately Seems Fine (TM), but I do like the forward thinking by Marshall here, and I’m not quite sure it even puts a dent in his present, which a trade like this generally should. I look forward to Leavitt’s public explanation of this trade, maybe I am missing something.

Leavitt’s public explanation: Good review. Maybe after reading it I should have been a little more patient, but as much as I like Taillon he is out for the year with no guarantees to be the same after a 2nd TJ surgery. I wasn’t about to waste 25 dollars of my budget on a 0. I tried to acquire a few prospects I liked but that didn’t go anywhere so I added a few dollars to his draft pick offers and took something for nothing in my view. I bought Garrett Richards for 5 dollars last year, I don’t think a guy out for the year was getting much more than 20, specially with this auction primed to be better with the new rules in place.

 

 

BAILEY’s Thoughts

Hustle stole most of my thoughts about this trade, much like I stole Max Scherzer in a trade once.

The picks are nothing. The $5 is nothing (yay, $5 extra you can throw at Mike Leake!). Granted, for 2020 at least, Jameson Taillon is also nothing. But a year ago he was roughly a top-25 overall SP and he’ll be back and still young, albeit with a laundry list of injuries, in 2021. So for Marshall, this is a long-term investment of just auction budget and no actual acquisition cost. I like that. We see every single year that the auction is brutal. Teams bring in tons of cash thinking they’re going to land someone awesome and instead overpay mediocre players that won’t be kept beyond that year anyway, like $63 Yusei Kikuchi or $32 Adam Jones. So Marshall essentially flushed some percentage of his future auction cash now rather than later but added an asset that feels a lot safer and with more upside.

Hustle noted that “if Taillon was healthy and in auction for 2020, he probably goes above $50,” but I would actually throw out that if Taillon, in his injured state, made it to auction this year, he’d go for at least $30 just because there’s a half dozen teams with more than $200 to spend. So kudos to Marshall for sniffing that out and getting this done now.

For Long Ball, I hope this is just “I want to cut this dead 2020 salary anyway, so I may as well take this and be done with it” and not “I listed a bunch of stuff on my trade block and the thing with the cheapest salary is the only thing anyone wants because oMg SaLaRy AnD cOsT cOnTrOl.” There’s no telling. I do think he got effectively nothing and might have done better waiting around for some of the tankers with budget space to check in. But maybe not. Sometimes the bird in hand is just better.

Thank you to both owners for taking a brief break from FANTASY FOOTBALL SZN to partake in this trade.

Trade: Senior Squids | TBD

TBD trades away

  • Marte, Noelvi (prospect)
  • White, Evan (prospect)
  • Kelenic, Jarred (prospect)
  • 2020 Draft Pick, Round 1 (TBD)

Senior Squids trades away

  • Chapman, Matt $9.03

Jordan’s thoughts: Any time you can take a top 20, possibly top 10 asset in the entire league anf turn it into a trio of Mariners prospects and a draft pick you can use to draft another, you have to do it, right?  

No. No you don’t.

Let’s look at Matt Chapman. He’s clearly old at 26 and 2 months. Last year he was a 137 wRC+, .369 wOBA hitter. This year, half way through, he’s been a 137 wRC+, .372 wOBA player. He’s walking slightly more. Striking out slightly less. Hitting way more homers. 

That’s a fun guy to own. An even better guy to have in the cost controlled setting of Dynasty Grinders. He’s currently the 40th highest scoring player. There’s 11 guys currently cost controlled with more points scored. Chapman IS THE GUY that you build around. He just is.

So, the return… Jarred Kelenic (last year’s 6th overall pick in our draft, a pick Squids traded to TBD for Ryan O’Hearn 🤯) lit Mariners twitter on fire early on the season by destroying Single-A ball hitting a 179 wRC+ in 50 games. He got promoted and as a 19-year-young hitter, his first 20 games in High-A has been 99 wRC+. Not awful, he’s young for the league, will probably catch up. But he’s already showing that he’s not the Juan Soto/Ronald Acuna type prospect that’s going to debut at 19 in MLB. He needs time and seasoning. The hit tools are there. He’s probably a good fantasy asset down the line.

Evan White is currently 23-years-old and has been doing alright in Double-A ball for the Mariners system. Another top 100 prospects on the FanGraphs lists and projects to be an average 1Bman that our league has come to love. He has the tools and talents to be some what of an asset in the future, but at 23 in double-A, the ceiling is just lower.

Noelvi Marte is 17-years-young and in rookie ball hitting slightly above average for the level with a 113 wRC+ in 23 games played. Scouts like his hit tools, but he’s not lighting up the charts or looking anything much more than a potential slow climbing prospect. Good to have, yet typically easy to find and acquire. 

Now, based on my simple player review, you are probably gathering that this a slam dunk, what the fuck, how did TBD do this kind of deal. And if you assumed that, well you’re right. 

TBD, currently at 11-2 in the league, sitting in first place, adds a cheap fantasy star for nickels on the dollar. Chapman is the best player in this deal now. Likely the best player in this deal four years from now. Possibly (probably) the best player in this deal in 2027 as a 34 year old. Even if the prospects were better, you still do this type of deal to acquire this kind of player. 100 out of 100 times. 

Senior Squids is currently in 9th place, sitting at 6-7 on the path to mediocrity again. It sucks that things have not broken the right way and the motivation to retool/build for next season seems tempting. The problem is that the obvious plan is to build around guys like Matt Chapman, not give them away to save like $20 of budget and assume the risk of a prospect. If you want to trade an asset like Chapman, the return should be major league ready cost controlled players who are on the rise, PLUS this same minor league package. If you’re not getting that…

HOLD THE ASSET.

I’m sorry, the best plan here for either team is to have Matt Chapman. If you’re concerned about some fluke and having so much stock in one player and you REALLY want to diversify the asset, you have to get more than this. If more does not exist, just hold. Don’t cave into the market that you are forcing yourself into.

Have a plan. Develop the plan. Otherwise you’re on a captainless ship, swaying back and forth in the seas heading in no clear direction based on gut calls hoping to find land. Maybe you luck out. Good luck. 

Return of trade reviews.

Yep, they need to happen. The league was born from it. We went soft and catered to the bullshit. If anything it gets discussion going. I’m willing to eat every single word in this post, printed out on paper (and I hate printing internet things) if the return here wins Squids or the Mariners a championship.