Who isn’t versed in financial lingo nowadays? In these tough economic times, it has become clear that everyone needs to know how to manage their finances. You certainly can’t leave it up to the experts. So in light of that, I (not an expert) am going to help you with players you should be selling, moderately positioning to sell and those you should be keeping the faith on
When it is Buddy Garrity sales time, you should be moving players right away. These are players that, I think, will 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 – i.e., those players you are best cutting your losses with.
Meanwhile the Don Draper sales time requires that you be more of a sly trade partner. I advocate giving a range of players that are available. Include those players who you think might be slightly overvalued by your trade partner If he is interested, cite 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.
I don’t love Edward Norton because he’s an Orioles fan (although that doesn’t hurt). He is a steady-as-you-go 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, you should buy low on those players.
Buddy Garrity sales time (sell now)
David Ortiz – Some people still believe Ortiz is a viable buy-low option. I disagree. Maybe Papi, instead of getting upset at Manny, should ask for a little help. Yeah, I went there. If you can trade Ortiz for anything, do it. Here are some numbers: 54, 35, 23, 0 – those are the HRs Ortiz hit in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009. Ortiz has paired those 0 HRs with a robust .208 AVE and a .318 OBP. Once pitchers come around that Papi is no longer Papa Doc, then that OBP will drop even further. If you have Boston fans in your league, see if you can get anything for Papi.
Jonathan Broxton – This isn’t an indictment of Broxton’s season (30 Ks, nine saves with a 1.50 ERA and 0.61 WHIP in 18 IPs) by any stretch. Still, saves are saves, if you can get a lesser closer and upgrade at a hitting position, I’d trade Broxton now. He shouldn’t continue to post a sub-1.00 WHIP for the rest of the season.
Brandon Morrow – The news cycle moved blindingly quick as I put this list of players together on Friday. It soon became clear that David Aardsma is Seattle’s closer. If you can trade Morrow great, but in 10-, 12-team leagues you should drop him outright.
Rickie Weeks – Speaking of the blinding pace of today’s news cycle, Instead of writing:
“Another number to throw out there: 129. As in the most games Weeks has played in a season. Weeks has always been backed by huge hype, and he is only 26. Still, he remains an injury concern. While his OBP (.342) is in line with last year – which in fact was lower than his previous two seasons – expect his AVE to come down. Still, it is possible he could put up 20 HR and 25+ SBs. Nevertheless, I’d be looking to see if anyone actually thinks this will happen. If someone does, I wouldn’t mind parting with him. Weeks tends to have poor Junes and Julys (.241 and .226 career AVEs), so now is the perfect time to sell.”
I could have just written: Weeks out for season, Quelle Surprise!?! This could clear the way for Mat Gamel to get more playing time. See if he sticks.
Ryan Franklin – See Jonathan Broxton. Closers are closers, saves are saves, I think therefore I am. If you can pair a closer with one of your hitters for a hitting upgrade and closer downgrade do it.
Jered Weaver – What a start for Jered Weaver (2.45 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, with 35 Ks in 47 IPs). If you look deeper into his stats, however, you realize that he has five home starts and only two away starts. In 41 career home starts, Weaver has a 3.15 ERA and 1.15 WHIP. Meanwhile in 43 career road starts, Weaver has a 4.04 ERA and 1.30 WHIP. In addition, Weaver’s BABIP is low and his stranded runner rate is high. When those are corrected, his ERA and WHIP will go up. I’m not saying he won’t have a good year, but if you can get people to buy on his strong home start, you should be dealing.
Don Draper sales time (moderately/slyly begin to move)
Dan Haren – Haren is a top five pitcher right now. So why do I suggest moderately attempting to move him? While he has a 2.09 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 56 Ks in 56 IPs, Haren is a career first half player. Haren’s first half ERA/WHIP is 3.23/1.09, while his second half ERA/WHIP is 4.12/1.33. Haren has great Junes, so you might want to keep him around into the middle of next month. However, since it takes awhile to deal a blue chipper, I’d start subtly shopping Haren now.
Dustin Pedroia – Pedroia is only .009 off his batting average pace from last year, while his OBP is .030 higher. However, if you look deeper, he has four SBs in seven attempts, while he had 20 SBs in 21 attempts last year. Expecting a repeat in SBs is probably not going to happen. In addition, while he only had four HRs through the end of May last year, can you really expect 15+ HRs from Pedroia? He does have a 162-game career average of 13 HRs. If someone is willing to pay a top five second baseman price, I’d move him.
Adam Jones – I love Adam Jones. I love the Baltimore Orioles. Am I trying to reverse jinx him? Maybe. However, I can’t help but draw parallels between Jones’ start this year and Justin Upton’s start last year. Upton hit eight HRs through the end of May and only seven the rest of the season. Jones’ batting average has to come down, probably by 80 – 100 points. When that happens, will he press? I hope not. He has massive talent, but if someone thinks this will continue, I’d move him. A 20-20 season is not out of reach, by any stretch, but I’m pretty sure he has already had his best month/month-and-a-half of the year.
Torii Hunter – I loved Hunter before the year (and drafted him in my HR league). Still, not even I thought he’d have nine HRs on May 17. In 2006 and 2007, Hunter, at ages 30 and 31, hit 31 and 28 HRs. So it wouldn’t be shocking if he managed 27-32 HRs, though I’m not sure that it is likely. Hunter also has five SBs, while his highest total is 23 (surprising, no?). Hunter has had a nice start – but if the other managers in your league think this will continue, take the opportunity to rob them of a slow starter.
Wandy Rodriguez – I love Wandy Rodriguez – my leaguemates know this. I’ve had him on every team the last few years. Wandy had been a horribly consistent pitcher – being awesome at home and terrible on the road – which made deciding when to start him a very easy decision. This year, Wandy has put it all together (1.90 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, with 48 Ks in 52 IPs) – and struck out 11 at Coors Field!!! To quote Russell “Trevor Hoffman” Sandman:
“Durability is the major limiting factor with Wandy Rodriguez (he has never notched over 182.2 IP in the Bigs).”
Durability is a red flag for pitchers. You have no idea who will be there for you down the stretch. While I love Wandy, I can’t buy him both staying completely healthy and continuing to be super dominant. If you can get $0.90 on the dollar, I’d move him. Still, you don’t have to.
Non-American History X/Rounders Ed Norton hold pat time (Keeping the Faith)
Geovany Soto – Soto has been mostly bad (.202 AVE, .321 OBP, one HR, and 10 RBIs) this year. In the last week, however, Soto has hit .333 with a .421 OBP. The Cubs catcher missed a ton of time due to the World Baseball Classic, and he is possibly now rounding into form. Those of you who held tight, you can now begin to relax your grip a bit.
Dan Uggla – Uggla defines streaky. He has been on the bad side of streaky so far (.187 AVE, .303 OBP, four HRs and 21 RBIs). However, this isn’t odd for Uggla. I’ll throw some more numbers at you: .255, .347, .264, .190, .217 & .258. Those were Uggla’s batting averages in every month last season. Some were great, some serviceable, some miserable. You have to deal with the miserable – roller coasters are meant to be fun, no?
J.J. Hardy – Hardy does not get off to good starts (.229 career AVE in March/April, .273 in May, and .244 in June). This year has been no different (.218 AVE and .301 OBP, though he has hit five HRs). You should wait him out – as the summer heats up so does Hardy. He’ll be money down the stretch.
Jon Lester – Lester has been struggling (6.51 ERA and 1.62 WHIP). In 2008, Lester posted a 4.31 ERA and 1.54 WHIP in March/April. Lester could be a slow starter. Also, he hasn’t been useless this year. He does have 54 Ks in 47 IPs – which is awesome. That K-rate suggests he’ll turn it around.
Stats as of May 16.
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