2016 Fantasy BaseballFantasy Baseball

Fantasy Baseball Finally: July 22, 2016

As we talked about yesterday, trade talks are heating up around baseball and it appears the Padres are at the center of it again. On Friday, a rumor emerged that they would deal Melvin Upton Jr. straight up for Ubaldo Jimenez. It came out later that the Orioles were also talking to them about Andrew Cashner in a somehow separate discussion. In particular, Upton’s renaissance as a player has been one of the more heart-warming stories of the baseball season.

If such a deal is made (the first straight up deal) it will essentially be about the Padres shuffling around money. Both players will become free agents after the 2017 season. Jimenez has an astronomical ERA this season (7.38), but he has always been very talented and he did post a 12-10 record with a 4.11 ERA in 2015. Perhaps they can unlock his potential as they have somehow managed to get Upton back. As for Upton, he has an outside chance of getting to 30/30 this season.

If you read one thing

The series of the weekend matches up the first place Orioles with the first place Indians. It could be a glimpse into a future playoff matchup. Manny Machado and Mark Trumbo led the way for the Orioles in this one as both hit home runs. Trumbo is up to 71 RBI on the season as he is also one of the bigger surprises in baseball this season (29 HR). Machado is one of the best young players in baseball and a dark horse MVP candidate when you count the defensive value he brings to the table.

We kind of expected

There are certain things you can set your watch to. One of those things is that Matt Kemp’s bat will come alive in the second half of the season. Overall, the numbers look horrible. A meager 13 walks on the season has given him the lowest OBP in his career. He has a 1.241 OPS following the all-star break, but that’s just six games. In his career he has a .282/.338/.469 slash before the break and a .292/.343/.514 slash after the break. He is one of the names on the trading block, but he is not expected to move because of his contract and because his numbers are down this year. Still, an enterprising contender could add him with the expectation that his recent surge (he is up to 22 HR and 67 RBI) will continue. He added two home runs and four RBI on Friday night. Again, not that unexpected given his history.

We didn’t expect

Maybe the fact that it involved the Rays and Athletics makes this point moot, but you don’t see 1-0 games very often. You definitely don’t see those go into the 13th inning very often. Sean Manaea and Jake Odorizzi locked up for eight innings a piece. Those are two pitchers moving in different directions. Odorizzi is on the trade block and this outing makes him that much more marketable. Manaea is a rookie and this start may establish him in the rotation for the Athletics.

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