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Rebuilding a Dynasty League Roster, Part 4a: Wait at Your Own Peril

I’m going back and writing an addendum to The Opening Trades piece just to use what happened with this league as an example of an important point.  If you wait unnecessarily, you may find the window for your opening trades to be smaller than you originally thought — and this holds especially true for pitchers.  Now I’m not talking about just taking the first decent offer you get, but if you have something on the table which you like and you think helps you, don’t wait around for a different contender to send you the “perfect” offer.  It doesn’t exist.  And when you do that, you could end up in a situation that I could have been in if I had waited much longer.

Take my pitching staff. Please!  Henny Youngman would be so proud.  Anyway, when I took over this team at the beginning of June 2012, my healthy starting pitchers were: Brandon Morrow, Lance Lynn, Jeremy Hellickson, Derek Holland, Kyle Drabek and Travis Wood.  Remember, these are just my HEALTHY guys. Now let’s take a look at what had transpired with these pitchers by the time June 17, 2012 came around (literally two weeks after I took over this team):

Lance Lynn – still healthy, still awesome

Travis Wood – still healthy, still pretty terrible

Derek Holland – On June 7, Holland was put on the DL with “shoulder fatigue” stemming from a stomach virus which caused him to lose about 15 pounds in 2 weeks. That doesn’t sound fun. His timetable is to hopefully return by the end of June. [He returned July 7, but allowed 6 runs in 3 out of his first 6 starts back]

Brandon Morrow – On June 11, he left his start after facing just one batter with a particularly painful oblique injury. Return date unknown at this point, but likely to be the after the All-Star Break. [Morrow did not pitch again before the trading deadline of July 31. In fact, he didn’t return until August 25.]

Jeremy Hellickson – After getting barraged in his start on June 14, he was put on the DL with “shoulder fatigue.” Right now, his timetable is for him to be back after the minimum, but that seems optimistic. [Turns out Hellickson did return after just 16 days.]

Kyle Drabek – The coup de grace. Drabek left his start on June 13 after feeling a “pop” in his elbow. Two doctors later (with the second being Dr. James Andrews), and he’s preparing for his second Tommy John surgery. Not good. [His arm ess-ploded. Again.]

So there you have it, I took over this team with six healthy starters and after 14 days, I was left with only two. But fortunately for me, I made the Jeremy Hellickson/Derek Holland trade on June 4. If I hadn’t, I’d likely be either sitting on my hands with a ton of value on the DL and unable to do anything about it or would have had to give a discount to inquiring teams since I was dealing them damaged goods. You just never know when injuries will pop up that can delay your rebuilding process, which can be extremely frustrating when you are in the initial stages. This is what I mean by “wait at your own peril.”

Rebuilding a Dynasty League Roster, Part 1: Setting the Table
Rebuilding a Dynasty League Roster, Part 2: Establishing Your Time Horizon
Rebuilding a Dynasty League Roster, Part 3: The Evaluation Stage
Rebuilding a Dynasty League Roster, Part 4: The Opening Trades

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