Rate the Deal: K-Rod & Valverde for Cahill, Chamberlain & Lester

I thought this was an interesting trade that went down in my keeper league last night and wanted to see what everyone else thought of the trade (I was not involved in making it):

The second place team traded away Francisco Rodriguez & Jose Valverde to the fifth place team in exchange for Trevor Cahill, Joba Chamberlain & Jon Lester.

League Details: The league is a standard 5×5 with 9 pitching spots (no designation of SP and RP).  There is an innings minimum, but no maximum.

The Second Place Team: He receives a huge boost to his starting pitching, though there is definitely some risk involved.  Cahill has been solid, but his value is not the basis for making or not making this deal.  We’ve talked about Lester a lot and we all know that he is due for a rebound, so I like the buy there.  Chamberlain is the real wild card.  He is coming off a great start, but with six potential starters for five spots, the whispers are going to hang around about him being shifted to the bullpen.  I don’t think it’s going to happen, at least not yet, but come September, when it is crunch time for fantasy owners, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Yankees made the move to conserve his innings.  Remember, he threw just 100.1 innings last season and the Yankees are going to tread carefully with him. 

As far as closers, he does still have Matt Capps, David Aardsma, LaTrow Hawkins (until Valverde returns) and Andrew Bailey, so he is not completely tanking saves.

As for the benefits of the deal on the standings:

  • He is ninth in ERA at 4.50 (the next teams above him have a 4.38 & 4.43)
  • He in tenth in Ks with 359 (next teams have 373, 382 & 383)
  • He is tied for the lead in saves with 40 (third place has 30)
  • He is last in Ws with 18 (next teams have 24)
  • He is next to last in WHIP with a 1.42 (next team has 1.39)

The Fifth Place Team: This is interesting for him.  He now has three good closers in K-Rod, Valverde and Francisco Rodriguez.  He also is not terrible in the rotation, with Chris Carpenter, Rich Harden, Jake Peavy & Max Scherzer, though there are some big-time injury risks there.  The problem for him is going to be a merry-go-round for his last two pitching spots including Ross Ohelendorf, Koji Uehara, Jarrod Washburn, Time Wakefield, Justin Duchscherer, Neftali Feliz (maybe) or some other castoffs.  To me, it looks like he left himself a little bit thin there, but let’s look at it from a standings perspective:

  • He is next to last in ERA at 4.77 (the next teams above him have a 4.51 and 4.75)
  • He in first in Ks with 483 (second place has 467)
  • He is eleventh in saves with 48 the next teams have 21, 20, 18, 16)
  • He is in the middle of the pack in Ws with 28 (there’s one with 31, one with 30, two teams with 29, another with 28 and two with 27)
  • He is near the bottom in WHIP with a 1.38

Conclusion: It’s a gamble from both sides, but I like what the second place team did more.  I think the fifth place team may have significantly hurt himself in wins, at the cost of saves.  While he can certainly make up points there, I don’tthink he’s going to gain much in the W department, and could actually lose a little ground.  The second place team made a trade from his depth in the bullpen (though he does leave himself a little bit weaker there), to strengthen his rotation and help himself across the board.

What does everyone else think?  Who do you think got the better of the deal?  Is this a trade you would have made?

To read the previous article, click here.

Picture courtesy of Icon Sports Media, Inc.

One comment

  1. I’d say the second place team helped himself more. Like you said, he still has some Closer to keep him in the ballgame and he should start gaining in W’s and Ks. Depending on Lester, he could improve in EA & WHIP too.

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