Fantasy baseball FAAB rationale: AL LABR, Mixed Tout

      April 29, 2013 @ 18:30:00 PDT


LABR (by USA TODAY) - AL

Drop Fuld, Sam (U,OF) Didn't turn out to be best placeholder for Luke Scott for past couple of weeks.
1. $1 Tuiasosopo, Matt (U,OF), DET Figure, What the hay. Only Tigers LF who has hit. No biggie if I discard him next week.
Drop Peacock, Brad (P), HOU No interest in letting this experiment hurt me any longer. Like long-term upside, but Peacock clearly needs time. Would've retained him had I known shift to bullpen was coming.
1. $1 Blevins, Jerry (P), OAK He pitches frequently, strikes people out.
2. $1 Williams, Jerome (P), LAA As SP, Williams is replacement-level -- at best. As RP, in stints of 3 IP or less, Williams cranks it up, is much more effective. Would give quality innings, I think.

Tout Wars - Mixed

reserve KYoukilis NYY Poor planning: I have no alternatives to Youk at 3B. Something like this was bound to pop up. I seek temp replacement until long-term backup plan (via FAAB or trade) emerges.
1. bid 1 on YBetancourt Mil He's hot, is hitting with power, has edge for PT at 1B for at least another month (Corey Hart). I don't expect hot play to continue for much longer, but he's acceptable fill-in.
2. bid 0 on JPacheco Col He's playing because of absence of Todd Helton, other players' days off. No power, no speed, but he'll do because of his lineup, home park.
3. bid 0 on MIzturis Tor I continue to wonder whether I should've made Izturis my second or even first priority. He'll play. His BA is slowly rising. He'll get going. He'll run some. He's eligible all over.
4. bid 0 on LValbuena ChC Valbuena is having same thing Betancourt is having. I hope it won't get this far down.
5. bid 0 on PPolanco Mia I just hope it doesn't get this far down.
release APollock Ari Hate to lose him, but Jason Kubel's return means RHB platoon work for Pollock. I'm low on options in OF with Chris Heisey headed for DL (but not eligible for DL spot yet).
1. bid 0 on XPaul Cin Mmm, acid. So, he's obvious beneficiary of Heisey's absence, runs somewhat frequently. Think Dusty Baker likes him. That matters, but SBAs matter more. (Fingers crossed.)
2. bid 0 on NReimold Bal My top priority, initially, but I been trippin'. Plus on-base skills in good lineup. Fairly reliable (for power) until he's injured.
3. bid 0 on JValdespin NYM Figure I would go back to well with this contingency, stab at SBAs, some power. I could stand more depth at MI spots, too. Learned result of my experiment from last week.
4. bid 0 on FMartinez Hou LHB is on good side of platoon in LF, has some power. Something slowly brewing in Houston. Not sure I'd drink it, even 12 months from now, but it's brewing.
reserve RCook Oak Love long-term possibilities for him, but I'm searching for depth with likelier immediate impact. Grant Balfour is fairly secure for time being. Ended up releasing Cook.
1. bid 3 on FLiriano Pit (Vickrey to $1) He's projected to return on May 10. Has high-K upside, will be in good pitching environment. Can't have too much of that, even if it fails. I'm early, to avoid possible (relative) bidding war.
2. bid 0 on JGrimm Tex Good pitcher, good opportunity for month or so. Numbers should be good, too, even if that's just because baseball gods owe him for miserable results in 2012 spot starts.
3. bid 0 on BMaurer Sea Dropped on Wednesday to activate Jose Valverde (good thing, notched SV). Maurer has been good in each of last three starts, still very intriguing. Few have noticed.

Follow-up on my experiment: Two weeks ago, I acquired Jordany Valdespin with a $0 bid because he was my top priority and I won a tiebreaker with the other bidder who listed him first. Valdespin did little for my fantasy team that week, and his schedule for the upcoming week (one week ago) included matchups against four southpaws in six games. I dropped him (and "won" Darwin Barney for $0).

I considered sucking it up for the long haul and keeping Valdespin (he was my only MI) through the potentially tumultuous slate. He's an intriguing player, with a little power, a good bit of speed and a left-handed bat (the last one good for platoons, obviously). I was curious about whether I could drop him and nab him for $0 again at the next FAAB deadline (this week), given how little interest there seemed to be in him at the prior deadline.

Of course, an extra-innings contest in which Valdespin belted a walk-off salami did little to help my cause. Otherwise, the number of plate appearances he received would've been reduced by two or three, and his numbers for the past week wouldn't have looked very attractive, I don't think.

Valdespin went for $5 (Vickrey from $7). Oh well. I have a feeling that he'll be maddening to play, anyway, because he's streaky and unpredictable. Still, his upside warrants the interest he's received from a few of my competitors.

I do still wonder: If he hadn't hit that home run, could I have landed him for $0? Valdespin may go on to put up good numbers this season, and I won't be surprised, but I felt that his prospects weren't reliable enough that I couldn't use him as a guinea pig (and that I could eventually find someone else).

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I explain my bids. Perhaps my thought processes will be helpful to you. Perhaps your feedback will be helpful to me. In future entries, I plan to comment on select bids from others if I see opportunities to make points about them.

About Nicholas Minnix

Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.

The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.

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