KFFL delivers the fantasy baseball spin on each Major League Baseball Hot Stove deal that matters in your fantasy baseball league. Check back for frequent updates to the Fantasy Baseball Hot Stove!
John Buck, Florida Marlins (signed)
Buck's stock is high coming off a .281-20-66 campaign with the Toronto Blue Jays. There isn't much different about him, particularly his frequently fanning, rarely walking ways at the dish. The free-swinging Fish won't preach anything to curtail those habits, making Buck a potential BA liability and riskier in 2011 than some drafters will acknowledge.
Dan Uggla, Atlanta Braves (traded from Florida Marlins)
The intra-division move doesn't affect Uggla's value substantially. You shouldn't
expect a repeat of that .287 batting average, but there are signs that the 30-year-old
has raised his bar in that department a bit.
Omar Infante, Florida Marlins (traded from Atlanta Braves)
Infante's 2011 outlook was going to depend on several moving parts to begin with, but now he's one himself. In theory he has some guaranteed work at the keystone. Ideally, for any club, Infante is a super-utility player, but his ballooned average on balls in play and All-Star game appearance have probably jacked up his image.
Chris Coghlan (for sure) and Emilio Bonifacio and others (perhaps) will affect where Infante plays in the field. Continued, significant contributions with the bat will affect how often.
Marlins cleaning house
Geoff Blum, Arizona
D-backs GM Kevin Towers values the versatility of Blum, who played with the San Diego Padres for part of Towers' tenure in SD. Blum, 38 next spring, isn't attractive but could warrant speculation for PT in extremely deep leagues. It depends on the rest of the Snakes' roster and whom they plug in at first.
Cameron Maybin, San Diego Padres (traded from Florida Marlins)
This is a great buy-low opportunity for the Friars. Maybin displays virtually zero control of the strike zone, but he still has a ton of potential and will be a moldable 24 at the beginning of next season. San Diego will ask him to put his speed to use. Can they coax some patience from him? It's hard to say, but don't write him off yet, at least in deep leagues.
Jake Westbrook, St. Louis Cardinals (re-signed)
These two (or, perhaps more accurately, Westbrook and Dave Duncan) seemed made for each other, so view this as a positive. The right-hander is a ground-ball aficionado who put up very nice numbers in his 12 starts for the Cards this year. A little more run support would've made his record more favorable. He should be a solid investment next year, assuming that fatigue doesn't become a factor.
Jose Contreras, Philadelphia Phillies (re-signed)
As expected, Contreras was a great fit in the bullpen. There's little reason to think that the Cuban can't contribute occasionally in K's and the ratio cats. Contreras, 39 in December, may once again have a shot to pick up the occasional save or W, too, but temper expectations for the vet.
Ryan Webb, Florida Marlins (traded from San Diego Padres)
Meet Hypothesis 1 for future Fish finishers. This past spring, Webb reportedly incorporated a change in his arm angle that gave his mid-90s heat more bite. He has a distinct (and beautiful) ground-ball profile. If he misses more bats, Webb becomes a serious sleeper for saves.
Edward Mujica, Florida Marlins (traded from San Diego Padres)
Florida has a big jump on shoring up its bullpen. Mujica is a solid setup candidate who has slowly but not notably become a little more dependent on his infield defense. His homer rate may serve as a little more cause for alarm in Miami than it did at PETCO Park, though. He's unlikely to be worth anything more than an occasional waiver claim in very deep setups.
Mike Dunn, Florida Marlins (traded from Atlanta Braves)
The Fish also landed a high K/9 southpaw, likely for the bullpen, in the Dan Uggla deal. Dunn, 25, has had significant control problems throughout his professional career, but he's a nightmare for left-handed hitters. He's unlikely to have any fantasy value in 2011.
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.