Fantasy Baseball Mailbag: Monday 6/6/16
We're here to try and help you navigate the ever-changing landscape that is fantasy baseball. It's not easy to keep up with all of the day-to-day fluctuations, so it can help to have someone to bounce ideas off of. That's what our daily mailbag will look to do.
Feel free to shoot us any questions you may have throughout the day on Twitter, and then we'll try to answer as many as we can in the form of a post. If you prefer, you can also send an email to Jim.Sannes@FanDuel.com. These questions can be anything fantasy baseball related. That means daily fantasy baseball, season-long, dynasty, and everything else are all in play.
Obviously, we won't be able to get to all questions because there's a lot to cover. For additional questions, be sure to check out our new MLB DFS tools along with our daily and season-long projections, which should help out more times than not.
Now, enough of that. Let's dig into today's mailbag and see what's popping in the world of fantasy baseball.
Email submission from Austan Kas:
Dynasty question: I was offered Goldschmidt and Price for Sale. Thoughts?
This trade would involve three of the most interesting names in dynasty right now. Hot diggity dog. If I'm in line to receive Paul Goldschmidt and David Price, I'm accepting that trade without much hesitation.
A lot of this revolves around Goldschmidt and Price themselves, but it also has a lot to do with Chris Sale's new mind-set this year. He has been foregoing strikeouts in favor of pitching deeper into games -- a goal he has successfully accomplished -- but it also makes him far less attractive for fantasy.
Every time an opposing batter puts a ball in play, a pitcher is leaving at least some element of his fate to luck. You don't face that same trouble when you get a strikeout. Sale has actually allowed more hard contact and less soft contact this year than last, so the only real difference is that he is striking out fewer batters, and that's not going to make him a better pitcher.
Right now, Sale's ERA is nearly a full run lower than it was last year at 2.54. However, his skill-interactive ERA (SIERA) is over a full run higher at 3.64. This means we should be expecting some steady regression out of Sale moving forward unless he shifts his mentality again to favor strikeouts over pitching late into a game. He could certainly realize that, in which case his dynasty value would go back up, but until then, he's a guy you should be looking to sell.
As for Goldschmidt, dude is simply ign'ant right now. Looking back over his last 41 plate appearances, he has a 56.0% hard-hit rate and 12.0% soft-hit rate. He plays in one of the best parks in baseball, and his dynasty outlook is tremendous, playing in an offense (long-term) that features hitters as good as A.J. Pollock, David Peralta, Jake Lamb, and Welington Castillo. All of those guys are quality buys in dynasty as the offense could be unreal when they're all healthy, and Goldschmidt leads the charge.
Price isn't necessarily a guy I'd be eager to buy right now simply because he's in a hitter's park in a division with several lefty killers, but he has a relatively positive outlook. Although Price's peripherals have taken a hit his last few starts, a big part of that is his opponents (twice against the Toronto Blue Jays and once against the Kansas City Royals). He has a matchup with another low-strikeout opponent against the San Francisco Giants his next time out, but then we should see the always-solid lefty return to his dominance. As a throw-in for this trade, Price is more than fine.
Again, all of this could change a bit if Sale suddenly returns to his high-strikeout ways. But until that time, I'd be looking to sell hard, and a haul this great in return makes that decision even easier.
@numberFire @LateRoundQB is there a set up reliever that will get a look at closer soon?
— Dave n'at (@pghdavenat) June 6, 2016
If that's what you need, this weekend was kind to you. The Houston Astros removed Luke Gregerson from his closer role and are looking to go to a committee, giving you two separate options that should be seeing saves soon.
Will Harris got the save in Sunday's game, continuing what has been an absurdly phenomenal season. He combines a 28.7% strikeout rate and 68.7% ground-ball rate, giving him a 1.91 SIERA. That makes him one of the best relievers in the game, and he's usable in Roto leagues even if he doesn't get saves just for the anchor he'll bring to your ERA and WHIP.
The other guy in play here is Ken Giles, who many thought before the season would hold Gregerson's role. Giles got off to a rough start, allowing multiple runs in 4 of his first 13 appearances, but his peripherals are still very good. He has a 3.03 SIERA with a 28.6% strikeout rate, both of which are in line with the numbers he posted last year with the Philadelphia Phillies. He's not quite on Harris' level in that his value will be more dependent on saves, but the possibility he could wind up closing games is enough to warrant a roster spot.
Another situation to monitor right now would be that of the Minnesota Twins. They're not going to get you a bunch of save opportunities, but Kevin Jepsen isn't likely to hold the closer job much longer. His SIERA is up at 4.66, he has blown 3 of his 10 save opportunities on the year, and he had another rough outing Sunday in a non-save situation. It's hard to tell who would get the saves until Glen Perkins is back, but Fernando Abad, Ryan Pressly, and Trevor May are all potential candidates to snag a save or two.
@numberFire drop Joe Ross to stream Shoemaker
— 73-9 (@erush710) June 6, 2016
Joe Ross is still absolutely viable in most formats thanks to a stout team and an ability to limit hard contact, but if he's your top drop candidate with Matt Shoemaker sitting on the wire, yes, I'd make that move.
Shoemaker changed his approach four starts ago in deciding to feature his split finger more prominently. In those four starts, he has a disgusting 32.7% strikeout rate, 2.25 SIERA, and 19.1% swinging-strike rate. Because of the change in approach, we can better buy into his improvements despite the small sample, and those improvements make him look like an elite option going forward.
Shoemaker could easily struggle tonight as the Los Angeles Angels head to Yankee Stadium. His ground-ball rate is still below-average at 43.1%, and that's dangerous in a park as homer-friendly as this. However, if he's still able to get a decent number of strikeouts, we should be even more excited about his rest-of-season potential.
Again, this isn't about Ross, who still has value despite a troubling dip in strikeouts. It's just about the absolute necessity that is getting Shoemaker off of waivers and onto your roster as soon as possible.
Want to have your questions answered in our mailbox? Submit your questions by tweeting @numberFire, or send an email to Jim.Sannes@FanDuel.com.