by Will Overton
Trying to predict what’s going to happen at the trade deadline is a complete crap shoot. However, fantasy baseball players have to gamble sometimes if they really want to win. The trade deadline opens up a new wave of viable waiver candidates every year and it often becomes a battle of first come, first serve.
The way to try and jump that line is to guess who is going to get traded and make some pre-emptive moves based on those guesses. Like I said, it’s a crap shoot, but if you’re willing to gamble this could be a good way of doing it.
The one thing I would caution is to not use this strategy unless you have spots free on your bench or guys you really don’t care at all about dropping. If you drop someone of value to stash a guy who could have value come next week you may wind up regretting it. If you have a spot you don’t mind dropping anyway then the worst thing you get is a wasted bench spot for a week.
If you want to take a chance on this here are some guys I would suggest gambling on:
Grady Sizemore – OF, Philadelphia Phillies: The Sizemore experiment in Boston didn’t last for long, but he’s landed in Philadelphia and opportunity may be knocking for him. Sizemore came over to Philly ten days ago and has seen quite a bit of playing time due to a Ben Revere injury. Now it seems like a Marlon Byrd trade is almost a certainty and that should open up a permanent spot for the former all-star. Sizemore is 10 – 24 in six games since joining the Phillies and has hit safely in all six games. Clearly, this guy probably isn’t a 20/20 guy anymore, but he still has some value and it seems a change of scenery may be helping him out.
Dale Thayer – RP, San Diego Padres: The Padres have already dealt Huston Street moving Thayer up the closer rung. Fantasy owners shouldn’t think now that Street is gone that they won’t trade Joaquin Benoit, cause they absolutely will. If and when Benoit is dealt out of town the closer role should go to Dale Thayer. For three seasons in San Diego Thayer has been consistently solid and he’s turning in his best season so far this year. Thayer has a 2.09 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP with 37 K’s in 38.2 IP. The Padres might not be great, but they play in a lot of close games and that can lead to double digit saves easily the rest of the season.
Neftali Feliz – RP, Texas Rangers: I’m not convinced the Rangers find a trade partner for Joakim Soria considering their asking price at the moment. However, look what San Diego got for Huston Street and maybe it’s not so farfetched to believe. Regardless, Netfali Feliz made his comeback just in time to step in as the potential next in line. Feliz has two years of closer experience under his belt already and ideally I think the Rangers would like to transition him back to that role anyway. Feliz has a lot of long term upside in this role and in a dynasty league he’s a must add.
Dan Straily – SP, Chicago Cubs: Straily is the product of a big trade earlier this month in which he was sent to Chicago. Now he could get a chance in the big leagues again as the product of another trade. The Cubs are shopping Edwin Jackson around and Dan Straily could easily be the guy to replace him if that happens. Straily had a 3.96 ERA in eight starts for Oakland last season and there was a lot of hype behind him coming into this season and he never could get it together. Straily was letting the ball leave the park far too often and ended up in the minor leagues before being traded. If he can keep the ball in the park Straily could bounce back in a big way in the National League. Straily hasn’t had a history of the homeruns in the minor leagues, so if he can right that he should be good to go.
Kevin Kiermaier – OF, Tampa Bay Rays: It’s been a surprisingly impressive showing so far this season for Kevin Kiermaier on the Rays. If Ben Zobrist or Matt Joyce is moved at the deadline he could wind up even more impressive with more playing time. Kiermaier has developing power with 8 HR’s in 165 AB’s in Tampa and another three HR’s before being called up. Kiermaier also has 14 SB’s between Triple-A and the major league level this season to go with his developing power. Kiermayer could wind up being a fine replacement for Matt Joyce and I prefer him to Brandon Guyer at this point for fantasy purposes.
Make sure to check out all of our Rest of Season Rankings:
*** Make sure to pre-order Rotoprofessor’s 2014 Fantasy Football Draft Guide!! The guide comes complete with projections of over 350 players, expended rankings, sleepers, and so much more (including constant updates up until opening day). For just $6 you will get everything you need to dominate your fantasy league and one lucky subscriber will win a free autographed Brett Favre 8×10! For more information and to place your order, click here. ***