The Jays started this trading season with a bang by sucking the soul from the Marlins, leaving them soul-less. Now they’re finishing up the winter trading season by reaching into the Mets’ chest and ripping out their heart like Mola Ram. The Mets trading Cy Young winner, R.A. Dickey is the smartest thing I’ve seen the Mets do since they clearly labeled the foul lines during their 1986 championship. There’s no reason people need to be sniffing powdered limestone. “Hey, Mex, wanna go to Tijuana to get some Devil’s Dandruff?” “Doc, we got a World Series game today.” *blank stare from Gooden* “So?” I don’t think Dickey is a one-hit wonder (pun noted); he was solid enough since 2010. His last three seasons ERAs are 2.84, 3.28, 2.73. Sure, there’s some xFIP issues in those years and his K-rates in 2010 and 2011 were 5.37 and 5.78. This was not an ace. Last year, he was. He matched his insane 1st half (2.40 ERA, 123 Ks in 120 IP) with a great 2nd half (3.09 ERA, 107 Ks in 113 2/3 IP). He’s 38 years old, but knuckleballers age at wildly different rates than most pitchers. Phil Niekro didn’t really peak until he was a doppelganger for Phil Donahue. I mean, when your fastest pitch couldn’t win a SpongeBob at a local carnival it’s not unreasonable to think Dickey can still have success. Still, Dickey has nowhere to go but down. This is a classic sell high trade, so I say good for the Mets. Dickey is a tough pitcher to predict. It’s not surprising that he had a great year last year vs. the AL. He had a great year vs. everyone. In 24 IP, he had a 1.88 ERA and a 0.50 WHIP with 28 Ks vs. the AL. In 26 IP in 2011, his ERA was 2.08 with a 1.08 WHIP and 24 Ks vs. the AL. I think his Ks are going to fall a bit closer to his career average. Give him say a 7+ K-rate instead of a 8+ K-rate, and, due to Metco suppressing homers a tad more than Rogers, I’m going to bump up his ERA a bit. For 2013, I’ll give him the line of 16-8/3.38/1.17/182. There is admittedly a larger margin of error in this line than I’ve given other pitchers. Anyway, here’s some more offseason moves for 2013 fantasy baseball:
Travis d’Arnaud – Traded to the Mets. He’s the best catching prospect in baseball. hitting-wise, and he’s not too shabby with the glove. On one hand, he’s being slightly boosted by the friendly PCL with his 2012 numbers at 45/16/52/.333/1. On the other hand, those stats were only in 67 games because he tore his PCL. PCL giveth, PCL taketh away. On a third hand, there’s no third hand — freak! He was on pace for 30+ homers when he was shut down at the June with the injury, an injury that needed two months to recover. I should just say, do you want 2013’s Wilin Rosario? That’s what we’re looking at here. Last year, the fifteenth best catcher was Jesus Montero with a line of 46/15/62/.260. If d’Arnaud hits less than 15 homers in a full season of ABs, I’d be shocked. 15 homers isn’t terrific, I know. That’s the base. There’s a ton of upside from that. He usually chips in a few steals, having one year in the minors when he stole 8 bags. He always hits for power and average. It wasn’t a complete accident I brought out Montero’s stat line. d’Arnaud looks a lot like him. What’s French for Jesus? Jerry Lewis. Hey, lady! d’Arnaud’s mixed league ready right now. The Mets could find that he needs a couple of weeks in the minors in April just to make sure his PCL is healed, but I highly doubt him not being up by May 1st. I’m gonna give him a line of 40/16/56/.283/3 in 375 ABs.
Ty Wiggington – Signed with the Cards to be a bench bat/insurance for when Allen Craig or David Freese are hurt. This doesn’t mean much for fantasy, except Matt Adams just fell a bit on the depth chart. Now we need Freese and Craig to get injured at the same time. So, now we’ll see Adams in May. I’m only 37% joking. Unless they both get injured and Wiggy is asked to play 1st and 3rd simultaneously. I suggest he lobs throws across the diamond.
Anibal Sanchez – Tigers re-signed him (her?). First clue that I’m human, when I heard I was sitting on the same stool that was once used by a 90-year-old woman to sit on while showering, I shuddered. Second clue that I’m human, I loved Anibal going into last year. Through two months, he had a 2.57 ERA and looked primed for a break out. Things fell apart in June when he posted a 7.06 ERA and a 3.99 BB/9, easily his wildest month. During the month of June, Anibal averaged a 91+ MPH, which is around what he throws, but his location was all over the map. Not sure if he was struggling with mechanics — you said it would only be $170 to fix the taillight! — but he righted the ship as the season went on, and ending up having a 2.43 ERA in September. A bigger concern is he threw his fastball a lot less in 2012 and lost any strikeout gains he made in 2011. He looks like a number two to (stutterer!) three fantasy starter and, unlike going into last year, I don’t see the number one fantasy upside. For 2013, I’ll give him the line of 13-9/3.92/1.28/180.
Mike Pelfrey – Twins signed him to a one-year deal. They’ve now added Pelfrey, Vance Worley and Kevin Correia. The Twins have succeeded in their offseason goal to boost their hitters’ confidence in split squad games.