How’s everyone doing without baseball every day? I’m doing great! I walked into a Chipotle and told them my latest score on that day’s Immaculate Grid, and when they didn’t know what I was talking about, I explained how I was typing in Billy Sample but it wasn’t showing up for the Rangers’ 30-steal guy, so I started writing a strongly worded letter, starting with “To Whom It May Concern,” but then I realized he might be in there as William Sample, so I tried that, but that didn’t work either! Finally, I tried Bill Sample and there he was! I then cackled for 45 minutes until the guy with the guacamole scooper sat me down and hand-fed me a burrito to get my blood sugar back up. One guy who’s got my blood boiling is Bryce Harper. He’s currently the third Bryce on the Player Rater! After Bryce Elder and Bryce Miller! If you were to misspell Bryce, Bryson Stott’s above him too. Bryce Harper is currently about as valuable as David Peralta, Mike Baumann and Max Fried. One guy you thought retired; one guy you know has been out all year and one guy who you think I made up. This sell isn’t meant to be shocking if you saw my top 100 for the 2nd half 2023 fantasy baseball. Could Harper’s 2nd half be better than his first? Naturally! And that’s exactly what you tell the person who you’re selling Bryce Harper. I wouldn’t trade Bryce Harper for a handful of hand lotion from a stranger, but I would go to our Fantasy Baseball Trade Analyzer and explore options. Anyway, here’s some more players to Buy or Sell this week in fantasy baseball:
Jonah Heim – As might already be clear from this post, unlike past Buy/Sells, this is for trading, because there were hardly any games between last week’s and this week’s. So, Jonah Heim aka Hit ’em with the Heim aka the 2nd best catcher on the Player Rater is a Buy, because I didn’t put him in my top 100 for the 2nd half. Um, huh? That he wasn’t in the top 100 is me underrating Heim. That means others will too. He’s having the kind of year you wanted from Will Smith, while being under the radar. I think trading for a catcher is more or less useless, but, if you have to be useless, be so in a meaningful way.
Tyler Soderstrom – Unlike other guys in this post, Soderstrom is not over 50% rostered. He was just called up by the A’s, and he’s famous for being a $50 item you buy to make seltzer, use once and then put it in your closet. Wait, that’s wrong. Here, let’s look at what Itch said for him, “That he’s already in Triple-A makes me think the catching path is no longer particularly real for Soderstrom. They might let him keep doing games back there once in a while, but they’ve got Shea Langeliers and just drafted a college catcher (Daniel Susac) with their first-round pick, and they played Soderstrom a lot (59 games) at first base in 2022. Wherever he winds up in the field, Soderstom’s smooth left-handed swing will be holding down the middle of Oakland’s lineup for years to come. At 6’ 2” 200 lbs, he generates plus power to all fields. In 134 games across three levels, Soderstrom hit 29 home runs, 21 doubles and five triples. The slash lines weren’t idyllic, but .267/.324/.501 across the three stops is extremely impressive given the age-to-level math and especially that Soderstrom bounced back from a rocky start to his season. Speaking of Rocky, I’d like to punch Grey.” C’mon! That he has catcher eligibility in leagues makes Soderstrom attractive. I could see trying him in all leagues, even if his playing time feels unknown.
Josh Naylor – His FB% is up, his Hard Hit % is fine, his Launch Angle is up, the only thing not currently tracking is the homers being up. They could be, and, even if they’re not, his numbers are underrated from common perception. He is a 11-homer, .270 hitter on paper. That paper is wrong. Dumb paper. “Yo, paper, stop lying! Jerky paper!”
Nathaniel Lowe – Likely, Nathaniel Lowe is yawnstipating without a ton of interesting upside. In the video at the top of the page, I call out Ty France for what Lowe is, an accumulator. How’sever, Lowe’s 2nd half last year seemed to indicate he could be breaking out. Maybe he was actually trying to tell us he’s a 2nd half hitter.
Andres Gimenez – On the 30-day Player Rater, Gimenez is the 4th best 2nd baseman, and the only one in the top 12 who isn’t at 100% rostered. And-Gim is no longer just a plus one for Pam in The Office!
Eugenio Suarez – 2019 numbers are so funny. The ball was so bouncey! Juiced more than Newton. Eugenio hit .300 in 2019’s 2nd half with 29 homers! Any hoo! You don’t need to be a Eugenius to know Suarez has more homers left in his bat than most.
Jeimer Candelario – Suppose this could be a buy as in grab him off waivers, but this is also a buy as in, “Hey, I’ll give you this player for that player and could you throw in Jeimer?” No one cares about a guy they just picked up off waivers, and, if he’s rostered in your league, it’s likely because he was just grabbed, then he’s easy enough to acquire in a trade. Remember, as I told you Lane Thomas was a sleeper in 2022 (year early), I also told you Jeimer. Maybe he was a year early too.
Anthony Santander – In general, I think 2nd half splits are nonsense. Just bunk. Useless. So, here’s where I say they matter, Santander was starting to hit the other day, and did you know he was the 2nd biggest home run hitter in last year’s 2nd half, behind only Aaron Judge? Tis true.
Blake Snell – Sell everything for Snell, if you need an arm. Send it all, and see what happens. Here’s the thing, fantasy league categories don’t move much in the 2nd half, so if you need to make them move, you might have to do drastic things. Could, say, Aaron Judge for Snell back fire? Absolutely, but if things need to get shaken, then shake ’em up.
Tarik Skubal – Not sure what the Streamonator says on him, because this isn’t a Streamonator call. This is an ‘acquire Skubal’ call. Rudy told me the other day that Skubal is the last great arm that will be available on waivers this year. That’s including rookie call-ups and otherwise. Rudy knows what he’s talking about.
Marcus Stroman – Not a huge fan of his numbers on their own, but he’s as good as out the door in Chicago, right? How have the Braves not traded for Stroman yet? I would’ve sent Vaughn Grissom yesterday. Speaking of which, if you’re in an NL-Only league, stash Vaughn Grissom now. He will have a starting job within two weeks.
Jordan Hicks – Don’t truly believe in Hicks. His command is awful. He’s a seven-earned-run outing away from losing the job. But I think that’s how most feel about him, so you could trade for him, and hope he keeps it together for a few months. That’s the nice thing about closers. They just need to be passable for one inning per game a couple of games per week. Be serviceable, and you’ll get saves, and SAGNOF.
Craig Kimbrel – He had a bad month of May. In June and July, he’s allowed one earned run in 17 IP with 25 Ks. The cooked Kimbrel might not be as cooked as you think.
Ryan Mountcastle – I almost put Gunnar as a Sell too, but consider this that. By the by, This That sounds like an 80’s game show. “Your Mazda Rx7 runs on THIS and drives on THAT.” “Gas, road!” Yet, Mountcastle sounds like a TV show your aunt loves on Britbox. “This Mountcastle fellow is handsome and solves murders!” This is a sell because I don’t think Mountcastle has an everyday job anymore. This is gonna sound like it’s got crackers in the head, but the Orioles have too many weapons.
Lane Thomas – Clearly, from my top 100 for the 2nd half, I have some issues with Lane Thomas. The team sucks, but the team sucked in the 1st half when he was good. His ROS projections have him for 10/5/.255. That’s so yawnstipating. There’s no denying he’s a top 15 guy on the Player Rater right now. If I had to guess, he ends up around top 70, so that means he has some distance to fall. Prefer to capitalize on Thomas’s first half and let someone else take the nosedive.
Marcus Semien – You might’ve heard the shock in my voice when I was doing my top 100 for 2nd half, and came across Semien, excuse the wording. His counting stats are hiding how poorly his season is actually going. A 120+ runs and 100 RBIs pace will do that, but the speed is bleh and the power is meh. Looks like Semien is shot, just an empty barrel.
Corbin Carroll – It is with much regret I tell you I’m concerned about the shoulder. I’ve already told myself, if he holds up well this 2nd half, then I will be in next year. I can’t help to keep imagining that grimace when he swung and missed. Not talking about the giant purple McDonald’s character, I’m talking his facial expression. It look terrible. Hopefully he’s fine! Seriously, I am rooting for him, but I don’t buy it. Wouldn’t trade Corbin Carroll for a year pass to EquiKnox, the gym where one gets framed for murder in Italy and exercises by running out of the country, but I would go to our Fantasy Baseball Trade Analyzer and explore options.