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7/31/2007 08:16:00 PM
Trade deadline recap
Here are some quick fantasy hits from all the trade deadline deals after the big Mark Teixeira move:
Red Sox get Eric Gagne from Rangers for Kason Gabbard, David Murphy and Engel Beltre: Gagne is a lights-out closer, but he’ll probably be a setup man to Jonathan Papelbon in Boston, and thus his fantasy value takes a huge hit without the same save chances. Meanwhile, the Rangers will need to find a closer with Akinori Otsuka injured. Enter Joaquin Benoit, who will pick up saves in the interim in Texas.
Gabbard could start for Texas after some solid starts for the Red Sox. It also means Jon Lester probably sticks around in the rotation even when Curt Schilling returns.
The Red Sox also sent Joel Pineiro to the Cardinals for a minor leaguer. Pineiro was penciled as the closer before Papelbon returned to the bullpen and struggled afterward. He returned to the starting rotation in the minors and will be part of the Cardinals rotation shortly. He might be worth a flyer.
Braves get Octavio Dotel from Royals for Kyle Davies: Dotel had 11 saves in his first season as Kansas City’s closer, but he’ll be a setup guy with the struggling Rafael Soriano for the equally shaky Bob Wickman. But there could be save chances if Wickman runs into more trouble. Meanwhile, Joakim Soria reclaims the closer’s role he had early in the season when Dotel was hurt. Davies has struggled, going 4-8 with a 5.76 ERA this season, but he can still contribute to the Royals starting staff. If you’re desperate in AL-only leagues, he’s worth a look.
Twins send Luis Castillo to Mets for two minor leaguers: Castillo hits for .300 and steals a few bases here and there. That’s about it, although he’ll score some more runs if he hits in the No. 2 spot ahead of the big boppers like David Wright, Carlos Delgado and Carlos Beltran. Ruben Gotay returns to the bench after a short stint as the starting second baseman. Alexi Casilla likely takes over at second for Castillo in Minnesota.
Yankees send Scott Proctor to Dodgers for Wilson Betemit: Proctor can’t be overused by Joe Torre anymore, but he’ll give the Dodgers some needed middle-inning help. Luis Vizcaino had already surpassed Proctor as the setup guy of choice, even with Kyle Farnsworth still hanging around. Meanwhile, Betemit gets dealt again at the trade deadline, but this time he won’t be more than a bench player for the Yankees for now, although he’s an upgrade in that regard over Miguel Cairo, especially in power. But will Betemit get enough at-bats now? On the other hand, Betemit could be groomed to take over at third if Alex Rodriguez leaves after the season.
Pirates get Matt Morris from Giants for Rajai Davis: Morris’ big contract seemed to make him appealing to a contender, but the Pirates got him instead. Morris hasn’t won a game since June 11, which probably hurt his trade value, and there won’t much difference in his game in Pittsburgh. Davis is a backup outfielder who has a little speed.
Padres get Morgan Ensberg from Astros: The Ty Wigginton deal marked the end of Ensberg’s tenure in Houston, but he’ll get a chance at new life in San Diego. However, going to Petco won’t help his already anemic numbers and he’s going to battle the equally disappointing Kevin Kouzmanoff for playing time at third.
Padres get Rob Mackowiak from White Sox for Jon Link: Mackowiak is a passable utility man who has eligibility in the outfield and at third (depending on your league). He’s an OK bench player in real life, but doesn’t offer a whole lot to a fantasy player, even in NL-only leagues.
Braves get Royce Ring from Padres for Wil Ledezma and Will Startup: Ring gives the Braves another lefty out of the bullpen along with the recently acquired Ron Mahay. Ledezma didn’t do much in his brief time in Atlanta, but Startup was a decent pitching prospect in their system.
Phillies get Kyle Lohse from Reds: Lohse is a very inconsistent starting pitcher, and that doesn’t change in Philadelphia. You probably don’t want him, even in NL-only leagues. The Phillies also got reliever Julio Mateo from the Mariners for some bullpen depth, although he hasn’t pitched in the majors since May after being arrested for allegedly hitting his wife in New York.
Also, my colleagues Todd Zola and Jason Grey will be chiming in about the trade deadline as well.
Mark Teixeira has just 13 homers this year, but has had at least 26 in his previous four big-league seasons.
A few teams got ahead of the game by swinging deals before tomorrow’s trade deadline. Let’s take a look at what’s gone down over the past few days:
-- Braves acquire Mark Teixeira and Ron Mahay from Rangers for Jarrod Saltalamacchia and minor leaguers: Teixeira is the biggest fish of this year’s deadline, although he has just 13 homers and 49 RBIs this season -- a far cry from his .301-43-144 season in 2005. Still, Teixeira is just 27 and already has 153 career homers in four and half seasons in the league. He obviously becomes the must-have player in NL-only leagues, and he’ll have plenty of run-producing opportunities in a lineup that already includes Chipper Jones, Andruw Jones, Jeff Francoeur and Brian McCann. Teixeira has been a second-half guy in terms of power, so hopefully he improves his power stats even away from cozy Arlington. Maybe heading back to Atlanta, where starred at Georgia Tech, could do that.
The Braves also got in the deal the lefty Mahay, who was 2-0 with a 2.77 ERA coming out of the bullpen. He will take the spot as the Braves’ sole lefty in the pen vacated by Wil Ledezma, who was designated for assignment on Sunday.
On the other side of the deal, Saltalamacchia has been a top Braves catching prospect for a couple of years, although his spot at catcher was blocked by McCann. Saltalamacchia, who was hitting .284 with four homers and 12 RBIs, has been playing some first base as the Braves tried to keep his bat in the lineup. With Texas now having such a big hole at first, Saltalamacchia likely will take over there at least for now, although he could supplant Gerald Laird behind the plate as well.
The Rangers also picked up top shortstop prospect Elvis Andrus in the package of minor leaguers in the deal. Andrus won’t turn 19 until next month and he’s got plenty of speed (25 steals this year).
-- Astros acquire Ty Wigginton from Devil Rays for Dan Wheeler: Wigginton has provided decent power the past couple of years, picking up 16 in Tampa Bay this season playing all over the field. He’s going to take over the starting third base job from the disappointing Morgan Ensberg, who was designated for assignment. Wigginton also has eligibility at first and second, in addition to third, which makes him a great pickup in NL-only leagues.
Meanwhile, Wheeler, who had 11 saves for the Astros, will continue to be a setup man for the Devil Rays, at least for now. Closer Al Reyes is on the trade block, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him dealt tomorrow, elevating Wheeler back to closer. Wheeler’s been spotty all year, but the chance at getting saves makes him a coveted commodity. Also, Chad Qualls moves up to the main setup spot behind Brad Lidge now that Wheeler is in Tampa Bay.
-- Reds acquire Jorge Cantu from Devil Rays for two pitchers: Cantu hit 28 homers with 117 RBIs in 2005, but has been a major bust since then, and was recently sent down to the minors. It’ll be tough for Cantu to find a spot in the crowded Reds infield, so he’s probably not much more than a pinch-hitter whenever he gets called back up to the majors.
-- Padres acquire Scott Hairston from Diamondbacks for Leo Rosales: After hitting 13 homers in 2004, Hairston has bounced between the big club and the minors and was primarily a spare outfielder. He’ll occupy the same role in San Diego, especially after the Padres sent Terrmel Sledge down to the minors. Nothing to get excited about here.