Archive for July 31, 2009

Trade Deadline Roundup

It’s been a wild few days, to say the least.  Let’s take a look at all the deals that went down and the fantasy ramifications they brought with them:

  • The Seattle Mariners traded C/1B Jeff Clement (Triple-A), SS Ronny Cedeno, RHP Nathan Adcock (Single-A), RHP Brett Lorin (Single-A) & RHP Aaron Pribanic (Single-A) to the Pittsburgh Pirates for RHP Ian Snell & SS Jack Wilson (to view the fantasy impact, click here).
  • The Philadelphia Phillies traded RHP Carlos Carrasco (Triple-A), RHP Jason Knapp (Single-A), SS Jason Donald (Triple-A) and C Lou Marson (Triple-A) to the Cleveland Indians for LHP Cliff Lee & OF Ben Francisco.  We didn’t spend much time on this deal, and there certainly has been some new fallout after today’s deals.  We all know Lee’s value as an ace, and that doesn’t change even in a hitter’s park.  Francisco is now a bench player, losing his fantasy appeal.  As for the players the Indians got, with Victor Martinez being sent to Boston, Marson could become an immediate impact player.  I would think Kelly Shoppach will see the biggest increase in playing time, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Indians get Marson up to try and reap some benefts from this deal immediately.
  • The San Francisco Giants traded RHP Tim Alderson (Double-A) to the Pittsburgh Pirates for 2B Freddy Sanchez (to view the fantasy impact, click here).
  • The Seattle Mariners traded OF Wladimir Balentien to the Cincinnati Reds for RHP Robert Manuel (Triple-A).  Balentien was someone that has a lot of talent and could potentially force his way into the Reds outfield.  I’d keep an eye on him, but he’s by no means a sure thing after struggling in the major leagues to the tune of a .210 career average. Read more

Other Deadline Deals Reported

There were a few other trades made today (that have been announced so far) that are worth mentioning here:

  • According to John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer (click here for the post) the Reds have acquired Scott Rolen for Edwin Encarnacion, Josh Roenicke & Zach Stewart.  That seems like a lot for the Reds to have given up, but as far as Rolen and Encarnacion go, they basically just trade places.  Not sure either gets a huge boost in fantasy value either way.  Stewart has been lights out in the minor leagues this season, currently pitching out of the bullpen at Triple-A, but was very impressive at Single & Double-A as a starter earlier in the year.  He could be the big winner, though at this point we’ll have to see if he’s going to be used as a starter or reliever.
  • Fay is also reporting that the Reds have traded Jerry Hairtston Jr. to the Yankees in exchange for catcher Chase Weems.  No fantasy impact at all here.
  • The Florida Marlins have acquired Nick Johnson in exchange for Aaron Thompson, a Double-A pitcher, according to Fox Sports.  Johnson’s arrival likely means that Jorge Cantu shifts across the diamond to play 3B, meaning Emilio Bonifacio’s time as a starter is likely over.  He was a borderline option to begin with, so no real loss there.
  • Can you believe that Jake Peavy may have been traded to the White Sox again?  The details are still coming in, but unbelievable.
  • Chico Harlan of The Washington Post (click here for the post) is reporting that Joe Beimel has been traded to the Rockies for two minor leagues.  All this means is one less pitcher in the Washington closer’s mix. 

Red Sox Add Victor Martinez

by Jimmy Hascup

In dire need of a jolt to their offense, the Boston Red Sox have acquired C/1B Victor Martinez from the Cleveland Indians for right-hander Justin Masterson, left-handed pitching prospect Nick Hagadone, and right-handed pitching prospect Bryan Price.

The big news maker here is obviously Victor Martinez headed to the Red Sox, but I can’t help but applaud Red Sox GM Theo Epstein for not including blue-chip youngster Clay Buchholz in the deal. They also didn’t include Lars Anderson or Michael Bowden, which has to make Red Sox fans very happy.  The Indians received some nice arms in the deal, but I’ll discuss them after analyzing Martinez’ impact. Read more

Adam LaRoche traded again

Adam LaRoche wasn’t in Boston long.  With the team having acquired Victor Martinez, reports are that LaRoche has been dealt to Atlanta in exchange for Casey Kotchman, according to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports (click here for the story). 

I hope you didn’t give up on LaRoche after he was dealt to the Red Sox, as he suddenly has solid fantasy value once again.  Always known as a second half player, the Braves are going to look to him to provide some pop in the middle of their line-up, giving him an opportunity to pick up significant RBI.  LaRoche had his biggest year in Atlanta back in 2006, when he hit .285 with 32 HR and 90 RBI before trading him to Pittsburgh in exchange for Mike Gonzalez.  He has driven in 85 RBI or more in each of the past three seasons and despite being at 43 currently, has the potential to reach that threshhold once again.

He is worth owning in all formats, especially if you need some power from a corner infield slot. 

As for Kotchman, he didn’t have much value to begin with, as he offered little power from a position that fantasy owners need it from.  He goes to Boston to be a back-up player, meaning if you need the roster spot, feel free to let him go.

What do you think about the deal?  How viable is LaRoche now?

Twins Nab Cabrera From A’s

by Jimmy Hascup

In an effort the strengthen their shortstop position, the Minnesota Twins have acquired Orlando Cabrera from the Oakland A’s for Tyler Ladendorf.

Orlando Cabrera provides an immediate upgrade for the Twins at SS over Nick Punto or even Alexi Casilla at 2B, but won’t really see his fantasy value increase that much.  Batting .280 with 4 HR and 41 RBI, Cabrera will most likely slot in the lower portion of the Twins’ batting order, compared to the second slot he occupied with the A’s.  Read more

Analysis of Washburn to the Tigers

The Detroit Tigers have strengthened their rotation, dealing LHP Luke French & LHP Mauricio Robles to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for Jarrod Washburn. 

Washburn’s stock increases slightly, due to an increased wins potential, but I would still be concerned of an impending regression in general.  He’s 8-8 with a 2.64 ERA and 1.07 WHIP this season, numbers that he hasn’t come close to matching in some time.  His career best WHIP is 1.17, which was back in 2002.  Since 2003 he’s only had a year with an ERA below 4.00 once.

He’s posted his line thanks to a .249 BABIP, so sooner or later you have to think that his luck is going to change.  I would certainly be skeptical about him moving forward, even in his new surroundings.

Neither of the two pitchers acquired by the Mariners were among Detroit’s Top 10 prospects prior to 2009, according to Baseball America.  French has split time between Triple-A and the major leagues this season.  At Triple-A he was 4-4 with a 2.98 ERA and 72 K over 81.2 innings.  Since being recalled, he had gone 1-2 with a 3.38 ERA and 19 K over 29.1 innings, though with a 1.50 WHIP.  However, considering his career minor league ERA of 3.88 and WHIP of 1.39, there’s not much reason to think he can contribute much pitching for the Mariners in 2009. Read more