This is your last chance.
It’s early June. Your Rotisserie baseball team is still in the hunt for a title, but it has some weaknesses. Now is the time to make a move that vaults your oddly named squad over the top.
The following is a list of guys who could be had in a trade, but acting now is imperative. These guys are getting ready to turn things around, so they either won’t be available for trade in a couple of weeks — or the price will become unbearable.
Certainly there are names on this list some people would refuse to trade, but league championships have often been decided when someone gets so flustered with a player he/she pulls the trigger on a trade just for a change of scenery.
Just for example, Robinson Cano is someone I would consider trading at this point. No longer comforted by the friendly right field stands of Yankee Stadium, Cano is on pace to hit — wait for it — 5.5 home runs. For the season.
Cano has homered 25 times or more in each of the last five seasons. It “ain’t gonna happen” this year. And yes, I just quoted myself.
A current robust batting average of .330 helps me believe Cano could turn things around and avoid his 2008-like RBI pace of 85, and a 2006-like pace of 65 runs scored. But he is playing for the Mariners, and I’m not sure either of those numbers are going to get dramatically better.
So if a fantasy baseball veteran like me can have visions of trading the No. 10-ranked overall player, heading into season, others could be having similar thoughts about other top-notch options. Sometimes it only takes the right offer at the right time.
Most fantasy baseball leagues have different sets of rules, categories, keepers and so forth, so I won’t try to suggest who could be traded for these guys. If you have a specific offer in mind, and want a second opinion, hit me up at www.facebook.com/dfritzjcpress. Make it a post, not a direct message, and I will answer as many as I can.
Here’s the list of players to grab (steal) for a run at fantasy baseball titles:
1. Carlos Gonzalez — Yes, I tweeted recently my disdain for this Colorado outfielder (@FritzBlitzzz). It boils down to his penchant for coming up with some nagging injuries that cost him at-bats. Only once in the last four years has he totaled over 500 at-bats, and it doesn’t look promising for this year as he currently sits a wastin’ on the DL.
But when he plays, he hits homers with a high batting average and good RBI totals. He’s worth the gamble.
2. Chris Davis — One doesn’t generally drop from 53 homers to less than half of that in one season, but the Baltimore first baseman is currently doing that dance.
When you make a trade offer, point out he’s on pace for 202 strikeouts if he reaches last year’s at-bat total. But deep down inside you know this: Dude has a sweet power swing, and the homers will come in bunches this summer.
3. Evan Longoria — This is a 30-homer guy who is capable of driving in 100 runs. The Tampa Bay third baseman seems determined to disprove such a notion as his 15-homer, 60-RBI pace suggests. It’s not going to be a career year, but today is the day to grab him.
4. Joe Mauer — Just be aware of what you’re buying here. Mauer’s 28-homer, 96-RBI, .365 batting-average season in 2009 was so off the charts, it’s hard to find two of his seasons added together to make those totals.
But if you need some batting average from the catcher’s spot — where he still qualifies — now is the time to grab the Minnesota Twins’ un-slugger in all of his powerless wonder.
5. Max Scherzer — Over his last three starts, the Detroit fireballer has surrendered 29 hits in just 19 innings. For him, that’s obscene, and just the type of thing to hammer home with a owner who thinks he has rights to the UnScherzer.
Keep in mind, Max is trying to Max his bank account by pitching into free agency. It’s the kind of thing that helps a pitcher focus, and harness his immense talent.
Finally, here’s a quick list of guys not to trade for:
— Cincinnati’s Joey “I’d rather draw a walk than drive in a run” Votto
— Andrew “I can play, but that 31-homer season was a mirage” McCutchen
— Ryan “Fooled you twice, shame on you” Braun
— David “I used to be a power hitter” Wright.
As for pitchers, avoid:
— Tim “You do know I was born a year before the Bicentennial Celebration in 1976, don’t you?” Hudson
— Jason “Come on, I pitch for the Cubs” Hammel
— Mark “I reek of second-half collapse” Buehrle.comments powered by Disqus