Buddy Garrity sales time (sell now)
When it is Buddy Garrity sales time, you should be moving players immediately. These are players that will likely regress to means or not perform as well as they have been (i.e., sell high candidates). In addition, they include guys I don’t think will perform well at all during the rest of the season. These are players you are best cutting your losses with.
Steven Strasburg – If you’ve read me, you know I am very weary of pitchers maintaining dominance, especially if he hasn’t done it before. Still, I have no problem believing Strasburg will be an ace pitcher for years to come, however, in redraft leagues, I think you need to test the market ASAP. For one, he won’t face the hapless Pirates every week. Sure he should fair just as well against the Indians, but he won’t maintain a 14:0 k:walk rate. Further, he has an innings cap. He’ll give you three months. People seem to be forgetting that fact or at least ignoring that he’ll let you down at the end of the year (when you need him most in h2h leagues). Add that to the fact that even the mighty Tim Lincecum has some stumbles and Strasburg will never look better (yeah, remember when she looked like that?!?!?). Basically, the minute your drive a new car off the lot it loses value. We’re near that point with Strasburg.
Brennan Boesch – It isn’t odd that another young pup makes the Buddy Garrity sales convention. Quite simply, without a track record of success, it is much harder to predict what will happen in the future. In 1,807 minor league ABs, Boesch has a .273 AVG and 53 HRs. So, it is incredibly unlikely he’ll continue to hit way north of .300 and his power pace (27 HR over a 162-game stretch) will likely wane a bit. Furthermore, as teams see him more and more, they will find weaknesses. I’m not saying he will fall off the face of the earth, but if you trade him for $0.75 on his current dollar, I think you’ll be very happy come a couple of months.
John Ely – While I am pretty happy to be the first fantasy writer to discuss John Ely (an unofficial tally), I’m not a huge believer that he can maintain his god-like SO/BB (3.90) rate. In the minors, he posted a 2.77 SO/BB rate, but only 1.50 in AAA and 2.50 in AA. Basically, he did a ton of damage in rookie ball and A+. Furthermore, the Dodgers seem to realize this (they are skipping his next start). I’d be pricing him to move.
Johnny Cueto – In 2009, from March – June, Cueto never had a monthly ERA higher than 3.60 and posted a 2.50 SO/BB rate. He then completely stunk it up in June and July, posting ERAs over 8.00 in both months. In 2010, Cueto put up an unbelievable May. He has come back to earth in June, but not so much so that his overall numbers look bad. I simply do not trust Cueto to carry a team throughout the season. I firmly believe that his ratios will never get better than they are right now. Until he puts together consecutive decent months, I’ll always advocate trading him right after he comes off some impressive outings.
Don Draper sales time (moderately/slyly begin to move)
The Don Draper sales time requires that you be a less obvious trade partner. I advocate proposing a range of players that are available. Make sure to include those players who you think your trade partner might slightly overvalue. If he is interested, emphasize the positive stats of your Don Draper candidate. However, don’t seem eager. The best reaction to a trade proposal is a slow one. Take your time; be fair and vague, like how Don Draper picks up women.
Troy Glaus & Scott Rolen – This is by no means an indictment of their current production. I don’t believe it is, realistically, a fluke. Heck, I even thought Rolen would make a decent sleeper in the preseason. That said, Glaus has played over 115 games once since 2007. Meanwhile, Scott Rolen has played more than 128 games once since 2007. These aren’t guys you can really trust – I mean, if you are lucky, they’ll play as many games as an elite catcher. Could they make it through the season? Sure. Would I want to bet on that? No. I wouldn’t give them away, but it never hurts to lessen your risk and increase the risk your opponents are carrying.
Clay Buchholz – I don’t dislike Buchholz because his name is hard to spell or he plays for the hated and enviable Boston Red Sox. I don’t dislike him at all, actually, I just think he’d be a good guy to consider dealing. Right now his BAbip is .286, but over the last 28 days, it has been .227. He’s had a mini-streak of big time success that you can capitalize on. Even if he continues to be somewhat lucky, he doesn’t really K that many batters (6.2 per 9). In fact, his K-rate has dropped every year in the majors from 8.5 in 2008. He’ll get wins and he’ll be decent, but over the last month+, people are viewing him as coming into his own, which I do not think is the case.
Mike Pelfrey – Mike Pelfry is actually striking out more batters per 9 (6.5) than Buchholz. Why do I bring that up? Because I’m going to make another comparison. Like Buchholz, his 2010 BAbip (.278) has been somewhat lucky; however, over the last 28 days his BAbip has been .250 (and over the last 14 it was .207). The media seem to be talking up Pelfrey as if he suddenly became an incredibly awesome pitcher. He hasn’t. He remains the same good pitcher he has been for the balance of the year. However, if you can get someone to buy the Pelfrey of the last month, you should do so.
The Ed Norton hold pat time (Keeping the Faith)
I don’t love Edward Norton because he’s an Orioles fan (although that doesn’t hurt). I love him because he is an awesome actor. The players in his group can’t be moved for fair market value and shouldn’t be dropped in any competitive league. They’ll likely rebound to near draft value so don’t sell low. Instead, if you see any of these guys available, you should be buying at a discount.
Gavin Floyd – Man, the 2010 Gavin Floyd (6.18 ERA and 1.63 WHIP) looks nothing the 2009 version (4.06 ERA and 1.23 WHIP). Right? Well, not exactly. He has basically the same HR/9, BB/9, and K/9 rates. What has changed is that he is suddenly giving up a whooping three more hits pre nine innings. When that happens, you know where to look: a bloated BAbip (.356). In addition, Floyd has been a much better pitcher starting in June than he typically is at the start of the season. I’m buying Floyd and scooping him up when folks drop him.
Jayson Werth – Sure Werth’s average has dropped about 50 points in 15 games, but he is still on pace for near 30 HRs, 94 runs, and 110 RBIs. He was never going to be a .300 hitter (career AVG = .266). He’ll settle into the .270 range and continue to mash. One other note, his BAbip over the last 28 days is .220. For his career it is .328. He’ll be just fine.
Ryan Braun – Braun is on pace to score 116 runs, hit 24 HRs, knock in 98 and steal 30 bases. That even includes a minor slump over the last month or so. He has a .271 BAbip over the last 28 days compared to .336 for his career. He is an absolute monster. Do not do yourself the disservice of moving a potential 30-30 guy.
Stats as of 12:00 PM ET June 9.