Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Flapjacks Fantasy Transactions

Here's another look at some of the recent transactions in my Yahoo keeper league.

1.  Macafeys (Tim) drop Tim Wakefield and pick up Jason Varitek, then drops Varitek and picks up Asdrubal Cabrera.
I assume that this was done to take advantage of the two games that Boston plays this week, as Tim already has a decent, if raw option at catcher in Geovany Soto.

I don't know how much this will affect Wakefield's season, but Doug Mirabelli, Wakefield's personal catcher, was waived by the Red Sox.  Boston's catchers had problems catching Wakefield's knuckle ball last year, enough so that Boston was forced to trade for Mirabelli back from the Padres.  Wakefield has always managed to win games, but I think it's more likely that he continues to regress this year due to age.

Cabrera is a young second baseman with some upside upside.  He hit .310 in AA last year with an .837 OPS, then hit .283 in the majors after being called up in August.  He'll likely need another year or two before developing into a top ten 2B, but he does give Tim a decent option at MI in case Bobby Crosby is injured. 

2. The Balls (Bru) drop Carlos Quentin for Edison Volquez.
I like Volquez, but I'm not certain that Bru needed another pitcher, having already rostered six on his squad.  Maybe he wasn't completely confident in the abilities of Greg Maddux and Pedro Martinez to pitch a full season.  

Quentin has talent and should get his share of at bats in the White Sox's outfield, but I don't think he's ready to be a solid contributor this year.  

This is a good pickup for the fact that Volquez has upside and Quentin was expendable, but I think Bru needs to improve his offense, especially since Cameron Maybin was just sent down.

3.  Tossers (Troost) picks up Jason Bartlett.
Since Kaz Matsui will miss the first couple weeks of the season with anal fissures, Troost needed to pickup a MI.  Bartlett stole 23 bases last year with the Twins, and with his move to the Rays, a team with a more aggressive base path philosophy, Bartlett should better those numbers.  The Rays will get twelve games against the Yankees and the Orioles in the first two weeks of the season, two teams with catchers that do not do a good job of limiting base stealers. Bartlett should have a few SB in during those series.

4.  Naterade (Nate) drops Josh Fields and picks up Andre Ethier.
Fields has been demoted to the minors, but he'll be back up this year, and he could provide great value as a keeper.  Fields has great power, but a poor batting average; if he can run like he did in AAA in 2006 when he stole 26 bases, he'll be a poor man's Ryan Braun.

Ethier has been one of the Dodgers' best players this spring, hitting .340 with 5 HR in 50 AB's. He could improve on his HR totals if he can beat out Juan Pierre for playing time in left field. Ethier could be a very good 5th outfielder, and he should provide Nate a decent option if Justin Upton or Adam Jones struggles to begin the year.  I like Ethier and I think he'll improve on his numbers from the last two seasons.

The only problem is that Nate is now severely lacking in corner infielders, with only Kevin Youkilis guaranteed playing time.  Time to hit the waiver wire, or trade one of your outfielders.

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