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Is it just me or does it seem like the St. Louis Cardinals have a prospect tree growing somewhere in Memphis? Last week I had a beer with Tim Lincecum at a dive bar in northern New Jersey. Turns out he’s a coach/umpire for the Police Athletic League (PAL) of Bergen county. According to Tim, he shared a spliff with a dude that once toked with Alex Reyes, and he told Tim that Alex told him that John Mozeliak admitted to combining Oscar Tavares’ ashes with a seed and soil mixture to grow a prospect tree. Apparently the process is becoming quite popular. How long until we start smoking people? Inquiring minds, like Seth Romero and Jon Singleton, want to know.

In my last points league post I was singing Tommy Pham’s praise. Since then I have been inundated with St. Louis Cardinals. There’s the “use the force” Luke Weaver vs. Jack Flaherty debate. I’ll leave that for another post, but needless to say, both are having tremendous successes in the minor leagues. Weaver is averaging 9.4 strikeouts per nine, 1.9 walks per nine and just a 1.91 ERA in Memphis. Flaherty’s numbers are rather similar at 9.15 strikeouts per nine, 2.1 walks per nine and a 2.24 ERA between Memphis and Springfield. Weaver is now playing in St. Louis, and while he struggled in his first start, I certainly would be willing to give him some more time. I don’t see him helping you this year in points leagues as he likely won’t pitch deep into games, but you should keep both of these Cardinal prospects on your radar. And don’t forget about Harrison Bader, who was just sent back to Memphis to make room for Piscotty.

With that said I’m not about to sit here a wax poetic about prospects. That’s Ralph’s sweet spot.

Instead let’s talk about the soup DeJong. For those of you that don’t speak malamoney, that’s the player of the day. Paul DeJong is versatile, available at 2B, 3B, and SS. He’s all over the menu. In the last 28 days DeJong has been a top five shortstop in points leagues, hitting 8 home runs, driving in 16 and batting .322 on his way to 65 points. Those numbers make him a top ten 2B and a top twelve 3B during that same span. In daily lineup leagues he seems like a solid player to have on your roster.

Paul “I love you DeJong time” didn’t join the Cardinals until the end of May. Since then he has 111 points. On the season that gives him a 0.56 points per plate appearance in a little over 200 plate appearances. Let’s see who he measures up against. Miguel Cabrera is averaging a 0.54 PPPA. We all know he’s having a career worst year, so let’s not use him. Here are a few other notable players with a similar PPPA. Manny Machado (0.56), Brian Dozier (0.56), Willson Contreras (0.55), Hanley Ramirez (0.55), Billy Hamilton (0.55), Adam Jones (0.55), Matt Kemp (0.54), Jackie Bradley Jr. (0.54), Xander Bogaerts (0.53) and Wil Myers (0.53). All of these players are owned in at least 86 percent or greater of CBS points leagues. And as I made reference to above, in the last 28 days “Everybody Wang DeJong Tonight” has a 0.78 PPPA. That’s Mookie Betts territory. Last week when I decided to write this post his ownership was in ESPN and CBS was not much above 50 percent. He’s now closing the gap on 70.

With the MLB non-waiver trade deadline having come and gone, so are many fantasy leagues’ deadlines. Why does that sound a bit like a mashup of The Walking Dead and a porno. And if you weren’t thinking that when you read it, I’m sorry for putting it into your head. Here’s what I want to say about making trades. Don’t be afraid to overpay. There’s a lot more I can say, but that’s the bit I’d like to say today.

Maximize your league rules. I’m in a lot of leagues, but in one of them the prospect of making the playoffs is looking bleak. In said league we can only keep five players. Last week I traded Francisco Lindor, Robinson Cano and Kyle Seager for Yu Darvish. I practically gave up an All-Star caliber starting infield, but here’s the thing. I already have four guaranteed keepers in Paul Goldschmidt, Freddie Freeman, Joey Votto and Stephen Strasburg, so Lindor was really the only one of those three that I might have kept. In this league where the points system heavily favors pitchers, Darvish is a much better keeper than Lindor. He and Cano should have been enough to make the deal, but since I had no use for Seager and he guaranteed me the deal, why not overpay and get what I came for.

See you next week.

Author’s note: In case anyone thinks the numbers are a bit off, this post was written on Monday (8/1)

 

 

Follow malamoney on Twitter at @malamoney.

   
  1. Grey

    Grey says:
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    Awesome title!

    • malamoney says:
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      @Grey: Thanks!

  2. Smallwine says:
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    Been offered F Freeman straight up for C Kluber in a weekly H2H points league. Pitching W’s are worth 7, L’s are worth -5 and HR’s are worth 7. I have Edwin E at 1B and T Frazier at 3B. I have Just Donk Martinez, Trout, and S Marte in the OF with my utility spot rotating between Pham and D Peralta.

    My other SP’s are J Gray, J Berrios, and J Smardzawhatever. I am RP heavy with A Miller (DL), W Davis, G Holland, C Kimbrel, and A Bradley (M Melancon also on DL). In our league Saves are +3 and Holds +2.

    Thoughts on this trade? Would Freeman and A Chapman for Kluber be more in line? I’m not sure if Freeman is a big enough upgrade over my current roster to justify giving up Kluber.

    Thanks!

    • malamoney says:
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      @Smallwine: Kluber is your only ace. I think a team needs a true ace to win. I love Freeman, but I think the move hurts you more at SP than it helps you in the field. That’s definitely true at 1B, but it’s nice upgrade over Frazier at 3B.

      Adding Chapman to the deal doesn’t really help you since you have Kimbrel, Holland and Davis.

      What are your keeper rules?

      • Smallwine says:
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        @malamoney: Thanks for the feedback. We have no keepers, complete redraft league.

        There are no innings limits and our pitching designations are all P so I try to deploy 4-5 RP per night.

        But, I agree with your ace comment. Kluber racked up 35 pts for me yesterday.

        • malamoney says:
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          @Smallwine: Is there perhaps anyone on your waiver that is actually outperforming Frazier? Ignore names. Just look at points per plate appearance.

          • Smallwine says:
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            @malamoney: Speaking of Bergman and Frazier. The only WW options available with more Pts per Plate appearance than Frazier is Yuli Gurriel or Y Solarte. I used 250 plate appearances as the floor.

            • malamoney says:
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              @Smallwine: What is your scoring system?

  3. Joey Jo Jo Jr Shabadoo says:
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    dejong is exactly the kind of player you tell everybody you usually hate in points leagues (with the addendum that you always add in that these leagues SHOULD have negative points for K’s anyway). he’s grichuk in the MI that actually takes less BB’s than grichuk. near same K rate. admittedly grichuk has never had a hot streak last as long as dejong’s did just recently, and i’d guess at MI the overall value is better than grichuk’s at OF. all that being said, you tell everybody to not draft odor at his price (and dejong’s underlying stats sure as hell look just like dejongs, except odor gets some steals) from his K rate. BABIP indicates dejong deserves to hit for a higher AVG thus far when compared to grichuk, but EXACTLY the same when compared to odor.

    • malamoney says:
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      @Joey Jo Jo Jr Shabadoo: There are a couple of differences here. In order to own Odor you would have need to draft him in the 5th or 6th rounds this year as his ADP was 72. That would be a huge waste of a pick in points leagues. DeJong is available on the waiver wire. He’s as Grey would say, a hot schmotato or something like that.

      If Odor were just sitting on the wire, I’d likely be telling people to grab him during a hot streak. DeJong is not a long term solution, but with his position eligibility, he could serve as a useful resource during the stretch run.

      Odor’s points per plate appearance is about 0.46, while DeJong is at 0.50. It’s close, but the edge is to DeJong. Odor’s BABIP this year is 0.231, while DeJong is .341.

      Yes I like to stay away from players the strikeout a lot, but even though DeJong’s K-rate is about 31.5%, his batting average is still .277. Generally guys that strikeout that much are just home run hitters. DeJong is different.

      Like I said, he’s not going to be the guy that makes a team a championship team, and next preseason I will likely not be promoting him very highly, but right now he might be able to give you a few extra points here and there.

      • Joey Jo Jo Jr Shabadoo says:
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        @malamoney: fair enough, but when odor hits a hot streak i’d be interested to see the time you mention picking him up off FA list. my guess is you wouldn’t as he’s a high K guy with on top of that unlucky season BABIP. it’s true it’s not a 1-1 since you are right the odor acquistion cost isn’t the same in most instances (except i have seen odor dropped in 12’ers a month ago). using that same BABIP the point was that odor and dejong should have the SAME batting average (when i wrote that it was maybe 1 or 2 total batting average points away, both in the middle .250’s)

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