Since there was only one game this week and players haven’t been able to get hot or cold or humid, this Buy/Sell is going to be slightly different. This Buy/Sell includes players that are owned in more than 50% of leagues. Okay, that’s not different for the Sells, but it does change the Buys. “Hello? No, not trying to change them, I’m talking about B-U-Y-S. Thanks, you too!” That was GLAAD calling me about potential insensitivity. I have not triggered anyone in almost three days, unless you count that fisherman I saw with a pipe that I called “Hipster Popeye.” As I mentioned in my top 100 for the 2nd half of 2018 fantasy baseball, my biggest Buy of the 2nd half is Brian Dozier. He’s about to come on in the 2nd half like he’s Mickey Maris in 1927 with Barry Bonds’s personal trainer. For the 2nd half, I gave Dozier the projections of 44/17/47/.274/5 in 265 ABs. Every single year he attacks the 2nd half like a shark attacks a tourist floating on a side beef. Hey, tourists, don’t float on a side of beef! That is rule number one. Literally all rules in the world come after that rule. You absolutely should buy Dozier, and on the pronto. Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:
Francisco Mejia – Traded to the Padres for Brad Hand and…a-weema-weh, a-weema-weh, a-weema-weh, a-weema-weh…Cimber. The lion sleeps tonight! Or is that The Lion King? Or is it Andres Galarraga? Or am I confusing my big cats? This was a solid trade for the Padres, in real life, but, for fantasy, Mejia had seven homers this year and a .279 average. I’d buy Mejia in NL-Only and keeper leagues, but you can ignore for now in mixed leagues.
Anthony Rizzo – I leaned heavily on our Fantasy Baseball Buy/Sell Tool for this post. (Hehe, I said tool. That’s almost as funny as duty. Hehe, I said duty. *mimes stopping an orchestra like I’m a conductor* Okay, I’m serious again.) To see guys who should be better from this point forward, you want it to sort by ROS$ minus STD$. To see Sells, click that until it reverses. Any hoo! Rizzo has hit 31+ homers four straight years. Rizzo and homers are synonymous like rice pudding and vanilla lattes are cinnamonous. Right now, his line drives are way up and his fly balls are down, but his track record says that will flip in the 2nd half and he will hit more balls in the air and out of the park. Plus, Wrigley is a launching pad in the summer humidity. HR to the Rizzo, for shizzle, my hizzo, and wizzle again or my straw is not a swizzle.
Manny Machado – Traded to the Dodgers for more prospects than I thought the Orioles would get, but not enough prospects silence Orioles fans from saying, “That’s all?” In Los Angeles, it’s Mannywood 2: The Manny Not Starring Vin Diesel. In Hollywood, it’s typical to not include “Not Starring Vin Diesel” in every title, as it’s assumed, but when saying The Manny, it’s good to point out the obvious. Instead of Mannywood 2, I prefer Mannywood: 2018. Speaking of which, I didn’t really understand Blade Runner 2049, was I supposed to see the first 2,048 Blade Runners? That seems excessive. Mannywood 2 is one of those sequels that’s completely recast and they pretend the first one never happened. It’s the ultimate remake actually, according to Ebert. He always said instead of remaking good films, Hollywood should remake bad films, and make them better. Well, Manny Machado, here’s your chance to make LA forget Manny Ramirez ever happened! Imagine, not Ron Howard’s film company, if Machado plays for a week with the Dodgers and then is busted for PEDs. I would cackle so loud the people Elon Musk sent to live on Mars would hear me. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday–Wait, I’m in the middle of a post. I went over Manny Machado in the top 100 for the 2nd half, and nothing changes for him. I was already assuming he was being traded when I wrote up his projections. You didn’t really think I projected him for nearly the same number of runs as his 1st half with 20 less games while staying on the O’s, did you? I mean, he was taking selfies with Matt Kemp at the All-Star Game, fer Criss Angel’s sake. I will say this about trades, they don’t always work out as you assume they will, and then Machado underwhelms and, well, look at the Yankees. Giancarlo has been solid, but did he become incredibly better in a stacked lineup?
Eric Hosmer – Here’s an interesting one (who am I kidding, they’re all interesting — they’ve been touched by Grey!). Hosmer’s HR/FB% is nearly equal to last year’s number and his hard contact is way up, so he should have more homers this year, but they’re down because his fly balls are down. Assuming he hits more fly balls, homers will come back in a big way this 2nd half. Also, Petco may not be the best hitting park, but he’s coming from Kauffman, so park factors aren’t, uh, factor.
Dee Gordon – More on Gordon below. I promise.
Yoenis Cespedes – One thing we can always trust is the Mets hitters being solid–Shoot, I just realized I was reading that in The Upside Down. Barb, is that you? Obviously, you might get nothing from Yoenis, or at least nothing more than you can get from someone like, say, Steven Souza or Stephen Piscotty or guys not named Stephen like Randal Grichuk. Cespedes’ upside is worth the cheap buy to see if he can salvage his season.
Bryce Harper – Baseball is such a great game because it has more to do with what is going on between someone’s ears than any other sport. Sure, you can get the yips in basketball for free throws, but, worst case scenario, you can just dunk. In football, let’s be frank, what’s going on between someone’s ears is the biggest concern for any sport, but more about after they retire from football. Golf has a lot to do with the mental aspect of the game, but is golf a sport? With baseball, I’d contend the less one thinks, the better off they are. Muscle memory is where it’s at, yo. This is all that’s holding Bryce back. He just needs to forget everything and hit the ball. If he can do that, he can have the biggest 2nd half of any player.
Willie Calhoun – Think Calhoun is the biggest call-up left when you consider amount of time he could see in the majors. Then again, the Rangers have cruised into last place in their division while thinking it’s more important to get Ryan Rua at-bats, so who knows if Calhoun is ever called up.
Anthony Swarzak – All of the SAGNOF buys from my last Buy/Sell are still applicable. The Mets are talking about getting rid of Familia, which would put Swarzak or Gsellman in the closer role. My money’s on Swarzak even if he sounds like a name that would be censored in Der Spiegel.
Kirby Yates – The biggest beneficiary of the Hand trade. Though, Terry Francona is a close runner-up because now he can bust out his, “Talk to the Hand” jokes. Yates could easily be a top 7 closer in the 2nd half.
Pedro Strop – Cubs’ closer Brandon Morrow hit the DL with biceps inflammation. Last time he hit the DL due to putting on his pants wrong; this time he put a headband around his arm. I’m dying for the Queer Eye episode of Brandon Morrow when he gets a makeover and ends up in a body cast. I’d grab Strop (who got the save last night), Steve Cishek then Carl Edwards Jr., in that order.
Robbie Ray – His K/9 is 13.6. Throw out everything else you know about him this year and that alone is worth a cheap buy. Do I trust him to turn around his whole season? Does a bear wipe its butt after it craps in the woods? No, it doesn’t (that I know of, I’m afraid if I Google “bears pooping” I might get on some kind of watchlist).
Madison Bumgarner – As I alluded to in the top 100 for the 2nd half, Bumgarner’s peripherals are kinda gnarly. Without his name value and track record, I’m not sure I would’ve even ranked him in the top 100. That’s talking about his pitching track record, by the by, not his track record at his local dirt bike course. His K/9 is 7.4, his walk rate is 3.1 and his xFIP is 4.29. If I put those numbers behind Jon Lester’s name, they wouldn’t feel out of place. I’d look at the Fantasy Baseball Trade Analyzer and see what I could get for him, I wouldn’t trade him for a previously worn head-kerchief by Axl Rose.
Stephen Strasburg – He was in the last Buy, Sell, Hold video in the top 100 for the 2nd half. Not saying to trade him for a ticket to see a church group’s revival of Della Reese’s Grits & Determination at her gravesite, but you should explore options before the clock strikes, “Oh crap.”
Dee Gordon – “Okay, Imma let you finish, but you have Dee Gordon as a Buy and Sell. Good joke, Grey, but I’m not laughing very much.” Yeah, I know I put Gordon as both a Buy and a Sell. I did that to show that a lot of trades are needs-based at this point. Do you needs yourself some steals? Then buy him! Do you not needs no steals or grammar books? Then sell him! If I could gain three or more points in steals without losing points in power, I’d make some pretty ridiculous trades to acquire Gordon. Same goes for Billy Hamilton, Michael Taylor, Tim Anderson or anyone else that didn’t get the memo titled, “No One Steals Anymore.”
Matt Kemp – Betting on a guy to suddenly get hurt seems to never work out. See, my Sell on Just Dong Martinez earlier this year. Do I still think Just Dong will get hurt at some point? Yeah, I do. He never stays healthy. What does this have to do with Kemp? Mr. Palindrome says, “Not a ton.” I was able to work Just Dong in the Sell though! Last year, Kemp battled some injuries, but not a lot in the few years prior to that. This is more about BABIP and rest of the season projections. Everyone projects him for 10 HRs, zero steals and a .270 average. If he does that, we’re talking about a guy who is putting up John Hicks-type numbers. Can check the Fantasy Baseball Trade Analyzer to see about possible trades. I wouldn’t trade him for handful of Olay hand lotion placed in your hand by a man in a trench coat, but I would explore options.