Trade Breakdown: Jhonny Peralta or JJ Hardy?

Every now and then (read: every week) during the offseason I struggle to come up with a topic to write about. These last few weeks have been especially trying with little to no action going on during hot stove season. It’s been less than inspiring to say the least. Then the realization came that I shouldn’t look to the major league GMs for inspiration, but to my fellow fantasy GMs. There’s a trade that went down in my 20-team dynasty league (of which I’ve written about before) that was of interest to me, and I think it could be of interest to you as well. Here’s the skinny:

Team A sends Jhonny Peralta

Team B sends Jason Grilli

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The Top 500 Dynasty League Overall Ranks, July 2013 Update

We’ve now reached the midpoint of the 2013 season. When we last took a look at this list in mid-May, we were still dealing with relatively small sample sizes from both major leaguers and prospects, so there weren’t huge shake ups to the order. This time is a little different. The further into the season we get, the biggest the variance from the preseason list gets. Whether it’s current fantasy superstars like Chris Davis and Yasiel Puig or minor leaguers who have taken legitimate steps forward like Gregory Polanco, Tyler Glasnow and Maikel Franco, we know more now–and with more knowledge comes more trajectory to the risers. The fallers, however, are still subject to similar whims as the first run through. For the most part, only injuries led to precipitous falls in the Top 500. But there are exceptions to every rule, and Ike Davis and Huston Street found this out the hard way.

As with any list like this, it is a snapshot of value at this exact moment. This list would be different if I put it together today and released it tomorrow–that’s just the nature of the beast. However, if you have any questions about values going forward, you can always just ask me. I try to be as accessible as possible, either through Twitter, e-mail or the comments on this site. You all are the reason why I continue to put so much time and effort into this site. So thank you for reading and interacting. You guys are the best.

And now for a couple of disclaimers. First of all, this list is for fantasy purposes only. Also, this list does not include any 2013 draftees–if you want to see how I feel about that crop of prospects, you can check out the Top 40 that I did a few weeks back for more detail. After the signing deadline passes, they will all get incorporated into the list as a group. Finally, the list is meant for a reasonably deep mixed league (15-16 teams) with standard categories, positions and farm systems. The list for a 10-team league would skew a lot more towards the high-upside players and the list for a 20-team league would have a heavier focus on steady players who project to have longer periods of production.

Finally, with the new rankings comes a reminder. If you’re enjoying the rankings, and all of the other work here at The Dynasty Guru, I hope that you will make a donation to show your support for the site. As a non-subscription site, this is how you can help make sure we’re still around at this time next year, producing the best dynasty league content out there. You can do that through this link, or by clicking the “Donate” button on the top-right corner of the homepage. All donations are truly appreciated.

And now what you came here for, the updated Top 500 list — as of July 1, 2013:

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On Tony Cingrani and Being Stubborn

You guys know me by now. Well, maybe. If you don’t, you will soon as I don’t necessarily have a ton of depth. For the people that do know me, they know that few things describe me better than the word “stubborn”. I was told from an early age I’d be a good lawyer because I was so argumentative, and I rarely gave in (as though that’s how one becomes a lawyer). What those things actually made me was a terrible student, but I digress. Knowing my penchant for sticking to my guns, it should come as no surprise that I heartily agreed with our Benevolent Dictator when he said that Tony Cingrani’s value will never be higher (go to quick hits). Granted he said that before Cingrani’s phenomenal performance against the Nationals, but I stand by it nonetheless. It holds as true today as it did then, which technically makes him (and me) wrong. But I’m not so willing to concede that we weren’t right either.

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Craig’s Eleven Bold Predictions

It’s so close to Opening Day at this point, you can almost taste the Rangers beating the heck out of the Astros. And here at The Dynasty Guru, we’re celebrating the march to Opening Day by having every contributor come up with 11 bold predictions. Yes, we know that people do this at plenty of other sites, but goddamnit it’s fun. And we’re allowed to have some fun around here.
The biggest difference between our predictions and the predictions from “those other guys”? Ours go to 11.

And since this there’s really nothing else important that can be said to set up a bold predictions piece, this seems like an appropriate to end the introduction. Here are things which will happen in the future according to Craig Goldstein:

1. Wil Myers gets called up in April despite concerns that he’d be held out past the super-two deadline. He won’t set the world on fire, but a .265/.340/.470 slash line will help the Rays in a hotly contested division race with Toronto, before ultimately settling for a wild card spot.

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The Top 50 Dynasty League First Basemen

Now we’re moving into a category with some meat to it – and not just because a number of these names could politely be referred to as “plus-sized”. We’re not exactly in a golden age for the 1B position in fantasy, but there’s still plenty of talent up towards the top. It’s when we get into the teens and beyond at the position where things are starting to get a little muddy. And after that, it just becomes one enormous wasteland. The great 1B we’re accustomed to seeing are getting older, and the next wave coming to take their place have not exactly worked out as planned so far. This isn’t likely to get much better over the coming years, as first base prospects are not exactly plentiful. So if there are going to be reinforcements on the way, they’ll have to start migrating from other positions on the diamond.

One other thing you’ll notice, which was much less of an issue at catcher, is that I’m only ranking players once positionally through out this entire series. That means, while guys like Buster Posey, Joe Mauer and Nick Swisher may have 1B eligibility, you’re unlikely to be using them there because their other eligibility is much more valuable. If you want to see how Posey stacks up against the rest of the 1B crowd, you can find that in the Top 500 that’s coming out at the end of the project. Also, I’ve included all DH-only players in with the 1B crowd because creating a DH-only list is pretty useless (until the National League adopts it).

And now your top 50 dynasty league first basemen, with commentary:

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The Post In Which I Let Everyone Know I’m OK

Hello faithful readers. I just wanted to write a quick post letting everyone know that the reason there has been no new content up is simple: I have no power. As some of you may know, I live in New Jersey which was hit pretty hard by Sandy — though fortunately I do not live by the shore where the most damage was done. My family and I have relocated to a friend’s house, and will likely be bouncing around until power is restored at our house. Thankfully we’re all OK and there seems to be no major property damage.

My hope is that I’ll be able to start content back up this weekend, but whether that’s realistic or not, I’m not sure. The good news is that I am flush with ideas to write about, and once things are back to normal, there will be lots of great content here throughout the rest of the off-season.

For all of you who are impacted by the storm, stay as safe and as warm as possible. You’ll see me around these parts again soon.


If Loving Brett Anderson is Wrong, I Don’t Want to be Right

Last night, Brett Anderson started a major league game for the first time in 14 months and 16 days. We know the background — Anderson saw Tommy John surgery interrupt a burgeoning career at the age of 23 in June of 2011. I watched most of this game last night, as I really wanted to see how Anderson was going to look in his return. The results were overwhelmingly positive as he threw 7 IP allowing only 1 ER, 4 H (none of the extra-base persuasion) and striking out 4. Yes, it was a very good match-up against the Twins in Oakland, but there were two additional things about his start which were extremely important.

You know the old adage that control is the last thing come back after a pitcher undergoes Tommy John surgery. Anderson looks like he’s going to try to be the exception to this rule. In his career, Anderson has had a very stingy walk rate of 2.2 BB/9 in his career — and last night he not only had no walks, but he threw 62 of his 86 pitches for strikes against the Twins. This is good for the obvious reason, but also with Anderson likely being monitored pretty carefully from a pitch count perspective for the rest of this season, this type of control will allow him to go deeper into games, potentially increasing his chances of getting wins. If he had only made it through 5 innings last night, he would not have gotten the win — but going 7 got it done.

The other aspect to last night’s start which was amazing is that Anderson faced 22 hitters (yes, 22 — he had a triple play turned behind him and he picked off Josh Willingham) and he allowed ZERO fly balls. Anderson has always been a ground ball pitcher, but this kind of ratio is insane. Could it be partially due to pitch selection? It’s clearly a small sample, but Anderson relied more heavily on his 2-seamer and curveball than he historically has, while easing off his 4-seamer and his slider. Could be something interesting to keep an eye on as he finishes out this season.

Anderson is a guy I’ve been stashing everywhere this season because I love his skill set. If you’ve seen my stuff at Roto Hardball and Fake Teams, you’ve seen me talk about the holy trinity of pitching and Anderson fits the bill with a career 7.0 K/9, 2.2 BB/9 and 54% ground ball rate. This means he can limit the downside risk while he’s on the mound. Yes, he will also be helped by pitching half his games in the cavernous Coliseum, but not nearly in the same way as a fly ball machine like Tommy Milone. You should feel confident starting Anderson the rest of the way both at home and on the road — starting Monday in Cleveland. If he’s unowned in your league, no matter the size, go grab him. Now.