Just because it is August doesn’t mean there won’t be any trades. Today the Nationals acquired Kurt Suzuki from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for C David Freitas. Let’s take look at the fantasy implications:
For the A’s it is not so much about Freitas, who was hitting .271 with 5 HR at Single-A. At 23-years old we will just have to wait and see what he develops into.
For them it is about seeing Derek Norris behind the plate. I know he has struggled in the Majors and he was recently sent down in favor of George Kottaras, but according to John Heyman (via Twitter) it will be Norris getting e playing time.
It is easy to look at Norris’ .195 average in 21 games and simply write him off. However, he showed power (3 HR) and speed (3 SB) in his 77 AB stint. He also needs time to adjust to the Major League game while also focusing on his defense.
As long as he can keep his strikeouts in check (117 in 334 AB at Double-A in 2011), he offers a similar power/speed combination that Russell Martin used to display. In two-catcher and keeper formats he is well worth keeping.
I will admit, with the A’s pushing for not only the Wild Card, but the division as well, the timing of the trade seems odd. That said, the clearly have faith in Norristo do the job.
They have been on the lookout for a catcher since the injury to Wilson Ramos, we will see if Suzuki can live up to his offensive potential away from Oakland. Having shown promise I’m the past, he has disappointed for a few years now and has seen his power completely disappear (1 HR and 15 doubles).
Maybe a fresh start and a better ballpark will make a difference, but until we see proof I would leave him for those in the deepest of formats.