by Will Overton
With the trade deadline coming tomorrow afternoon teams have been busy wheeling and dealing late into the night hours. There may not have been many big moves, but few smaller ones which can and will likely impact some fantasy baseball teams. Here is a rundown of some of the late night moves.
Pirates Acquire Derek Lee
The writing was on the wall when the Orioles traded for Chris Davis that Derek Lee was probably headed out of town. Lee is headed back to his old stomping grounds in the National League Central division, as for once the Pirates are buyers. Lee typically turns things up in the second half, and it’s already starting to turn that way as he is 9 – 19. I would also expect a nice uptick in production from him as he heads back to the NL and will be seeing parks and pitchers he is more familiar with from his days in Chicago. Still available in plenty of leagues Lee could help your team out a good bit coming down the stretch, and if this trade affects his value at all I think it will be a positive affect.
Headed to Baltimore in return is 23 year old minor league first baseman Aaron Baker who has never played above A-Ball, but has shown solid power with 15 HR’s to date this season. It’ll probably be a couple years before Baker is on your fantasy radars.
Indians Trade Orlando Cabrera to the Giants
With multiple middle infielders on the shelf right now the Giants added their second middle infielder during this trade deadline period. Cabrera join Jeff Keppinger as the newest Giants and the two will share time at second base, or one may shift over to shortstop where Brandon Crawford has struggled to stay solid. Cabrera hasn’t been lighting the world on fire for Cleveland with a .244 average and not a lot to show in the way of power or speed. In NL Only leagues Cabrera may have some value, but that’d be about the only scenario I can see him being owned in.
Cleveland gets back someone who was once considered a top 100 prospect in outfielder Thomas Neal. Neal is 23 and is spending his first season at the triple-A level. Neal has shown power the past three years hitting double-digit HR’s in each season, with a high of 22 in 2009. However this season Neal has just 2 HR’s to date. He is hitting .295 and the Indians are very weak in the outfield right now so it’s possible he sees the majors this season, but until he finds his power again you should just watch from a distance.
Rafael Furcal Signs Off On Trade to the Cardinals
The now ex-Dodger comes to St. Louis sporting a .197 batting average. It’s clearly been rough going for the career .283 hitter. But, things have been looking up lately as he is 8 for his last 23 with a couple of stolen bases. A lot of fantasy owners have lost faith in the 33-year old shortstop , but he could take off with a fresh start in St. Louis. The Cardinals have Ryan Theriot at short right now and Skip Schumacker at second base. It is believed that Furcal will take over the shortstop job on a regular basis with Theriot backing up both middle infield positions as he has been struggling prior to these last couple of games. For the Theriot owners out there it’s likely in your best interest to cut bait at this point as he won’t be seeing regular playing time. And if Furcal is out there in your leagues he’s worth taking a shot on as he’ll be hitting leadoff in a good lineup and could see some extra work on the base paths to boot.
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