Archive for Trades

ESPN Positional Player Ownership and Replacement Levels

It’s time to understand how ownership trends are playing out this year. I will start by breaking down one of the most common fantasy sites, ESPN. I will go over the batter ownership rates for different league sizes so owners know which players are applicable to them. Additionally, I will find the current replacement level player for each position.

With fantasy experts using ownership rates to help find potential waiver targets, it is important to know each league’s ownership level. Historically, I know I should only worry about players owned in 10% of leagues or less but not everyone plays in 15-team or deeper leagues.

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The Unwritten Rules

This question has been asked of me: “what is the definition of collusion in fantasy sports?” Read the rest of this entry »

Proper Etiquette – Know Your Rivals

On Tuesday, I wrote about a trade offer a buddy of mine received in a dynasty league. He was offered Nolan Arenado and Dallas Keuchel for Andrew Benintendi, Miguel Sano, Rafael Devers, Josh Bell, and a 2018 draft pick. The comments devolved into a discussion of trade negotiation etiquette. Gross, right?

To be clear, I’m a believer in the old adage “you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.” At least as it applies to getting what you want from other people. If you ever happen to have a fly infestation in your house or apartment, I highly recommend putting a funnel over a cup of vinegar. You will catch ALL of the flies. You could smear a thick layer of honey over an entire counter and not catch one fly. Whoever made up that saying didn’t know anything about flies.

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How Much is Too Much?

The best part of dynasty leagues is that trade behavior can mimic real baseball. When you’re in a deep 20 team format, the league splits into contenders and rebuilders. The prices for win-now talent and top prospects often mirror what we observe in reality. It’s fun.

Over the weekend, a buddy of mine asked me about a trade proposal he received in his dynasty league. He covets Nolan Arenado (who doesn’t), and a rival finally made an offer – Arenado and Dallas Keuchel for Andrew Benintendi, Miguel Sano, Rafael Devers, Josh Bell, and a 2018 draft pick.

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Making Video Game Trades

Back in the day, I used to spend my summer mornings playing Major League Baseball Featuring Ken Griffey Jr. That’s the first one for N64 and not to be confused with Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball (SNES). The N64 version was the first to allow trades. The AI was…not smart.

Teams could roster exactly 25 players. No more, no less. There were no salaries. Three-for-one trades were allowed and the computer assigned no value to opportunity cost. The team acquiring three players would be forced to make a couple immediate cuts. I got in the habit of trading a player, let’s call him Robin Ventura, with Rich Aurilia and David Weathers for an incremental upgrade, like Alex Rodriguez. The computer said no to Ventura for A-Rod. It said yes to the trio. Then it cut Aurilia and Weathers. I picked them back up off the wire. Rinse and repeat.

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Three Common Trader Mistakes

So Chad Young and I have been trying to sell Gerrit Cole in the dynasty league we co-manage. It’s not that we’re concerned about Cole. The shoulder doesn’t worry us, and we expect him to bounce back from his worst year in the majors. He’s entering his age 26 season. Aside from the injury blip, he has everything we could possibly want from a dynasty pitcher.

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Transaction Analysis: Fowler, Uehara, Heston, & More

St. Louis Cardinals sign Dexter Fowler

This move made too much sense for both parties. The Cardinals needed a centerfielder and Fowler needed a job. As for the fantasy value changes, several are positive and other negative but overall the move is neutral. In St. Louis, the home park is less pitcher friendly and his new offensive teammates are not as good as the Cubs. The big positive change will be more playing time as he slots into the full-time Cardinals center field job.

Fowler’s talent level has been consistent for the past five seasons. Ten to 20 home runs and stolen bases with a .270 AVG as the norm. There is not a reason for this trend to change. I am though a little worried about the stolen bases will drop off as he enters his thirties.

Fowler’s production may not be playable in shallow formats, but the stolen base and home run combination make him an outfield option in most leagues. He’s valuable, just not elite.


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Fantasy Implications: Segura-Walker Trade, Castro & Rodriguez Sign

Mariners trade Taijuan Walker and Ketel Marte to the Diamondbacks for Jean Segura, Mitch Haniger, and Zac Curtis

Let me start with the two players the Diamondbacks acquired. The move to Arizona is probably a break even move for Walker’s output. Now he is facing the pitcher twice a game instead of the DH, but instead, he has to pitch in his offensive-leaning home park and also travel to Colorado. The bigger question isn’t the small peripheral factors relating to park or league but instead figuring out his true talent level.

Walker is probably considered to be a failed prospect after being in the top-20 of several prospect lists. While he has not lived up the top prospect ranking, he is still a decent fantasy option and could be an even better one if he gets the home runs under control. Just looking at his K%-BB%, he ranks 27th overall the past two seasons (min 300 IP) with the likes of Cole Hamels, Ian Kennedy, Jose Quintana, and John Lackey.

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Fantasy Implications: Reddick and McCann

The Astros have so far been the major mover this offseason. After signing Charlie Morton earlier this week, they picked up Brian McCann and Josh Reddick yesterday. The team has already remade themselves and the offseason has just started.

With the offseason just getting started, it is tough to get a good feeling on what the Astros will end up looking like going into spring training. When the offseason is nearly over, fantasy owners will need to sit down and figure how the playing time will get divided up among the players in Houston to help determine final values.

Astros sign Josh Reddick

Josh Reddick is one of those players in I hate drafting. If Reddick is an option on my draft sheet, I usually go another direction as Reddick offers little to no upside and downside. He is the safe play and for some people, the right move for them. The 30-year-old has had some up-and-down performances like the 32 home runs in 2012 or the single stolen base in 2014 but otherwise he is good for a dozen home runs and 10 steals with a .270 AVG.

Over the past four seasons, Reddick has traded off some power for a better contact rate. His strikeouts are down (20% to 13%) with his batting average being up (.226 to .281). While he has changed some, it is not enough to move his fantasy value.

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Fantasy Implications: Valencia, Chavez, Morton, & Gurriel

The Hot Stove is underway and we’ve got you covered when moves happen. You will see Jeff Zimmerman and me alternating on the coverage of moves. His first piece on the Braves moves, Howie Kendrick, and Kendrys Morales can be found here and you can follow the Hot Stove Implications tag for all of the pieces throughout the winter.

Athletics trade Danny Valencia to Mariners for Paul Blackburn

Valencia is out here collecting teams like they’re Pokémon. The Mariners will be his seventh team since reaching the majors in 2010. He might finally get his first full season of work since 2011, too. Valencia has always raked lefties with a career .873 OPS and only once has he been below .822 (and he had just 56 PA that season).

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