A Dynasty League Season in Review: Trading

I’ve written about some of my current fantasy leagues/teams in this space before, though I’ve yet to discuss the league I’m about to. For a primer on that, check out what I wrote for Fake Teams a while back, because this will be very much the same exercise. Here are the basics:

  • 20-team league
  • 25 man rosters
  • 22 keepers
  • 4 DL spots
  • 15 man minor league system
  • C, 1B, 2B, 3B, SS, LF, CF, RF, Util, Util lineup
  • SP, SP, RP, RP, P, P, P, P rotation
  • AVG/R/HR/RBI/SB/OPS
  • W/K/S/H/ERA/WHIP

Because of the deep rosters, multiple DL slots and the fact that you can keep anyone on your farm team as long as they’re below rookie limits or are currently in the minor leagues, the league plays extremely deep. There is a three round minor league draft held in February, followed by a three round major league draft. Most roster turnover comes in the form of trades. I thought it might be instructive for some to see the thought process that I go through in terms of building my team. For disclosure’s sake, Bret joined this league this offseason. I had a good team and made moves, some good, some bad. I did reach the playoffs though I lost in the first round. Oh yeah, and I’m the LA Dodgers. Here goes nothing:

2012 End of Season Roster

1. Jonathan Lucroy (C MIL)
2. Salvador Perez (C KC)
3. Eric Hosmer (1B KC)
4. Allen Craig (1B/RF/LF STL)
5. Dustin Ackley (2B SEA)
6. Asdrubal Cabrera (SS CLE)
7. Adrian Beltre (3B TEX)
8. Josh Willingham (LF MIN)
9. Anthony Gose (LF/CF/RF TOR)
10. Cameron Maybin (CF SD)

11. Zack Greinke (SP LAD)
12. RA Dickey (SP TOR)
13. Matt Moore (SP TB)
14. Ervin Santana (SP KC)
15. Jarrod Parker (SP OAK)
16. Shaun Marcum (SP MIL)
17. Scott Baker (SP CHC)
18. Kenley Jansen (RP LAD)
19. Drew Storen (RP WAS)
20. Robbie Ross (RP TEX)
21. Tom Wilhelmsen (RP SEA)
22. Ronald Belisario (RP LAD)
23. Bobby Parnell (RP NYM)

There were some more players on my roster – these were the one’s I intended to keep. Unfortunately I can’t track down the full end of season roster, so if you see someone not on this list…they should have been.

MiLB (as of Feb 10)

Albuquerque Isotopes (Los Angeles NL; Craig)
1 – Brantly, Rob (100 Abs – C – Mia)
2 – Federowicz, Tim (16 Abs – C – LAD)
3 – Fuentes, Reymond (0 Abs – CF – SD)
4 – Grimm, Justin (14 IPs – SP – Tex)
5 – Hagadone, Nick (36 IPs – RP – Cle)
6 – Hamilton, Billy (0 Abs – CF – Cin)
7 -
8 – Lee, Zach (0 IPs – SP – LAD)
9 – Maronde, Nick (6 IPs – SP – LAA)
10 – Myers, Wil (0 Abs – RF – KC)
11 – Romero, Enny (0 IPs – SP – TB)
12 – Rosario, Eddie (0 Abs – 2B – Min)
13 -
14 – Thornburg, Tyler (22 IPs – SP – Mil)
15 – Ventura, Yordano (0 IPs – SP – KC)

St. Louis sends:
Enny Romero (SP TB)
Tyler Thornburg (RP MIL)

to

LA Dodgers for:
Derek Norris (C OAK)

This one is pretty basic. I started the offseason with a glut of catchers including Lucroy and Perez. I’ve always loved Norris dating back to his time as a member of the Nationals, but he was going to have to be one of my 22 keepers and I couldn’t justify him over the other two players, or having three catchers. I waited out multiple offers for Salvy and Lucroy but ultimately opted for the low impact, MiLB depth move.

LA Dodgers send:
Matt Joyce (RF/LF TB)

to

Oakland for:
Eddie Rosario (2B MIN)

So here’s what was going on. I knew Wil Myers would be up in 2014, I had a roster crunch and what I considered a bunch of outfielders. I had picked Joyce up off of waivers years ago, and while I thought he was generally undervalued, he got me the best return as no one was biting on Josh Willingham (gee, I wonder why). I had always had a thing for Rosario because while the homers weren’t there, a second baseman with his slugging percentages made me giddy. This was less about pure value though, and more about getting some value while opening up some keeper spots.

LA Dodgers send:
Mat Latos (SP Cin)
Carlos Beltran (CF/RF StL)

to

Minnesota for:
Zack Greinke (SP LAD)

Here’s what I was thinking: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

What in holy hell? I actually do remember thinking about this one. First and foremost, I think I was a bit biased as a Dodgers fan and wanted the shiny new toy. Secondly, I was momentarily blind to Beltran’s center field eligibility which REALLY would have helped me out this season. Lastly, while I liked Latos, I thought he was a rung to a rung-and-a-half below Greinke as a fantasy option. I was wrong on a lot of levels here.

LA Dodgers send:
Allen Craig (1B/RF/LF STL)
Kevin Gausman (SP Bal)
Tyler Thornburg (SP Mil)

To

Milwaukee for:
David Wright (3B NYM)
Robert Stephenson (SP Cin)

This was a tough one for me. I really liked the value I was getting on Wright, but at the time of the deal (we’re still in the offseason here, as the trade was made Feb 20) Gausman was blowing up in terms of value. People were going crazy for him based on electric offseason reports, and Craig was integral as a backup option to Hosmer first base (well, starter, really), and the corner outfield spots. If I had known this deal was coming along, I’d probably have made more of an effort to keep Beltran or Joyce. Still though, you take David Wright when you can get him, and while Gausman was and is a great asset, getting Stephenson before he shot up rankings was a win in my book. Despite the presence of Beltre, I couldn’t pass up the chance to get Wright.

LA Dodgers send:
Drew Storen (RP WAS)

to

Baltimore for:
Lorenzo Cain (CF/RF KC)

What do you do when you’ve been trading away your outfield depth? Get some back, of course! Storen held plenty of value even if he wasn’t the closer because this is a holds league, but I couldn’t say no to an everyday (when healthy) center fielder who I had always thought had some upside to his bat. It wasn’t a great year for Cain, but I’m ok with the risk/reward aspect of this deal, and it satisfied my needs for another CF option compared to Maybin and a corner eligible bat as well.

LA Dodgers send:
RA Dickey (SP Tor)
Tim Federowicz (C LAD)

To

Milwaukee for:
Jon Lester (SP Bos)
Tyler Thornburg (SP Mil)

Come back to papa, Thornburg! This is my first in-season trade (took place May 8) after eschewing a bunch of off-season offers for Dickey. I knew he wouldn’t be what he was in 2012, but I hadn’t anticipated his slow start and I was nervous about it getting better. I received a lot of positive reaction from my league on this deal, though it was the opposing owner who proposed it. No haggling or back and forth. He proposed and I accepted. I was as shocked as anyone, but was more than happy to trade in Dickey for the younger Lester who was also going through a rough patch but, had more controllable years, essentially. There are no time-limits to ownership of a pitcher, but getting younger was the best part of this deal for me.

Toronto sends:
Hanley Ramirez (SS/3B LAD)
3rd free agent draft pick (STL)
3rd free agent draft pick (TOR)

to

LA Dodgers for:
Billy Hamilton (CF CIN)
1st free agent draft pick (LAD)

Though I was quiet the first 5 weeks of the season, this move took place not two weeks after the Lester trade. Hanley was partaking in one of his many trips to the disabled list, and I had been after him for some time in this league. The opposing owner had always liked Billy Hamilton and while we had many fruitless negotiations in the past, the most haggling involved in this one took place over the free agent draft pick. I don’t much care for FA picks, as they’re taking place after 440 keepers are off the board, but I also don’t like giving away value for free, so I made a point to see if I could get the deal done without the pick involved. Ultimately I couldn’t, but I wasn’t going to let that stand in the way of consummating a deal. Hamilton is potentially a singular talent, but I felt in the end that in a weekly H2H league he wasn’t as valuable as he’d be in a roto-format, and went ahead with the deal.

LA Dodgers send:
2nd round free agent draft pick

To

Toronto for:
Kyuji Fujikawa (RP ChC)

Same teams involved and again it includes an injured product. As I said, I don’t value FA picks much and I knew I could stash Fujikawa in either a DL slot or in my minor leagues and hope he can earn the closer’s gig in Chicago next season. It seemed like a low-risk/high-reward situation for me.

Minnesota sends:
David Ortiz (1B Bos)
Richie Shaffer (3B TB)

To

LA Dodgers for:
Adrian Belte (3B Tex)
Nick Hagadone (RP Cle)

Back to the guy who fleeced me for Beltran/Latos. This was June 10, and while Hosmer was heating up under the tutelage of George Brett, I was unsure if it was a mini-hot streak as he’d shown before or something real. With Wright in tow, and Hanley 3B eligible, I decided to get some backup at first base and deal for Ortiz. Beltre and Ortiz are comparable players, but with the positional advantage in Beltre’s corner, I insisted on a slight prospect upgrade. This one really worked out well for both, though I did miss Beltre when Wright went down towards the end of the season and I had to play Asdrubal Cabrera at short and Hanley at third instead of a Hanley/Beltre combination.

LA Dodgers send:
Shaun Marcum (SP NYM)

To

Minnesota for:
Jonathan Broxton (RP Cin)

Same teams, yet again. Broxton was on the DL at the time and Marcum needed to come off mine. He was going to cut Broxton and… well there’s little reasoning here. Roster machinations.

Baltimore sends:
Chase Utley (2B Phi)

To

LA Dodgers for:
Hyun-Jin Ryu (SP LAD)
Dustin Ackley (2B/1B/CF Sea)

The keystone had long been a problem for me and while Utley has health issues, his general level of productivity was and will be a huge boon to my offense. I still hold out hope for Ackley at times but in the end I had invested far too much and received far too little. Ryu had been quite good for me all season (this took place in July) but I had qualms about Ryu going forward and decided to take my own advice. Welp, it turns out that July was not an indication of things to come and Ryu posted an ERA under 3.00 in August and September/October, respectively. Not to mention he was great in the playoffs. My only saving grace is that my pitching was relatively strong and my lineup needed a bit more punch at the time. I don’t believe it’s a trade I’ll regret making, though I was clearly wrong about Ryu.

Colorado sends:
Michael Bourn (CF Cle)

To

LA Dodgers for:
Salvador Perez (C KC)
Tyler Thornburg (RP Mil)

Au revoir, Thornburg. Center field had been a persistent issue for me since Cain had been on and off the disabled list and I stupidly traded Beltran. This addressed that hole and added a dimension of speed, though Bourn wasn’t as active as I wanted him to be. I am still a fan of Perez and it hurt to let him go, but I had Lucroy at catcher still, and this gave me a more complete team. It’s probably not a move I’d make in the offseason, but I was angling to win a championship and running out of time to address my deficiencies. This mid-August trade was an effort to do just that.

St. Louis sends:
Danny Farquhar (RP Sea)

To

LA Dodgers for:
Cameron Maybin (CF SD)

I had ridden the Maybin train long enough. I though Maybin was poised to have a breakout season, but with the injury bug biting him once more, I made this deal in an effort to seal up saves by gambling on Farquhar. With Wilhelmsen on my roster and losing his gig, I needed a little help. Farquhar turned out to be a strikeout monster and I’m looking forward to a full season of him in 2014. Though closers being as volatile as they are, who knows how that turns out.

2013 End of Season Roster

1. Jonathan Lucroy C/1B MIL
2. Eric Hosmer 1B KC
3. David Ortiz 1B BOS
4. Chase Utley 2B PHI
5. Hanley Ramirez SS LAD
6. Asdrubal Cabrera SS CLE
7. David Wright 3B NYM
8. Juan Uribe 3B LAD
9. Wil Myers RF/CF TB
10. Lorenzo Cain CF/RF KC
11. Michael Bourn CF CLE
12. Anthony Gose CF/LF
13. Josh Willingham LF MIN

14. Zack Greinke SP LAD
15. Matt Moore SP TB
16. Jon Lester SP BOS
17. Jared Parker SP OAK
18. Ervin Santana SP KC
19. Scott Baker SP CHC
20. Justin Grimm SP/RP TEX
21. Kenley Jansen RP LAD
22. Danny Farquhar RP SEA
23. Bobby Parnell RP NYM
24. Bret Cecil RP TOR
25. Robbie Ross RP TEX
26. Oliver Perez RP SEA
27. Josh Fields RP HOU

2013 End of Season MiLB Roster

Albuquerque Isotopes (Los Angeles NL; Craig)
1 – Coello, Robert (29 IPs – RP – LAA)
2 – Fuentes, Reymond (0 Abs – CF – SD)
3 – Fujikawa, Kyuji (12 IPs – RP – CHC)
4 -
5 – Kelly, Casey (29 IPs – SP – SD)
6 – Lee, Zach (0 IPs – SP – LAD)
7 – Maronde, Nick (11 IPs – SP – LAA)
8 – Mondesi, Raul Jr. (0 Abs – SS – KC)
9 – Pinto, Josmil (76 Abs – C – MIN)
10 – Romero, Enny (4 IPs – SP – TB)
11 – Rosario, Eddie (0 Abs – 2B – Min)
12 – Stassi, Max (7 Abs – C – Hou)
13 – Stephenson, Robert (0 IPs – SP – Cin)
14 – Ventura, Yordano (15 IPs – SP – KC)
15 -

It would take way too long to find all my waiver moves and there’s probably little interest in reading the analysis of that. I will say that I’ve continued my catcher fetish by adding Josmil Pinto and Max Stassi off of waivers, and considering I snagged Lucroy and Perez that way, I feel like I’ve got something going here. There’s some big names on that list, but the system isn’t as strong as it used to be. I struggle with the idea of being ok with that, but as good as my 25-man roster is, I think I have to be. It will be tempting to deal some of that now-talent for good prospects, but I actually think my best course of action is to avoid doing so. Instead, stock up through the MiLB draft and be content (mostly) with what  have. Do you think I ended the season better off than I started?  Let me know if this type of exposition over the course of a season is helpful and we can try and do some more of it.

2 comments on “A Dynasty League Season in Review: Trading

  1. RotoLando says:

    At least you were able to get off the Maybin train. I can’t quit him.

  2. Dan P. says:

    I like what you did, Im glad I stumbled across you web site, I love playing in only dynasty formats and could not find any websites out there tailored to dynasty leagues

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