Some people may think the non-waiver trade deadline is a period where major deals go down and the landscape of the pennant chase is changed dramatically. However, most of the time that isn’t the case. Most deals seem minor in nature. So the task of the fantasy writer is to determine which deals need to be addressed and which deals to allow to pass by. Sometimes you find yourself on the fence. So, in that situation we will do something like this where everything gets abbreviated.
Seattle Mariners Acquire David Phelps
It’s a fine line between Anthony Swarzak and David Phelps. Phelps has a longer track record of success, but the level of success is not the same. Still, he will have a dramatic impact on the wild card chase because he could nail down the 7th or 8th inning over the next couple of months. He could be worth a pickup on your fantasy team if you are in a holds league, but otherwise you could probably do better.
Minnesota Twins Acquire Jaime Garcia
Truth be told, this was supposed to accompany the Phelps deal in its own separate article. Unfortunately, the Braves did not like the medicals on one of the original prospects going in the deal. That delayed the deal about a week and allowed some other teams to get involved. This is one of those deals that has a bigger impact on real baseball than it does in fantasy baseball. Fantasy owners are becoming savvy to the real benefits of having dominant middle relievers in lieu of mediocre starting pitchers. Garcia might do better on a contending team, but he is also rumored to be on the block again as the Twins may give up. Go figure.
Colorado Rockies Acquire Pat Neshek
Give the Phillies credit for getting as much as they could out of a solid, but unspectacular middle reliever like Neshek. Yes, he has the 1.12 ERA and that has gotten him added in a number of fantasy leagues. If you are in a holds league he just got a lot more valuable. In standard leagues you have to weigh the current results with the stuff you see and his past history. He has a 3.59 career ERA, so the Rockies are getting a solid relief pitcher. He has a funky delivery that is almost submarine style but really has no direct comparisons. The stuff itself is always around the plate, but he’s not going to be confused with Dan Quisenberry or Kent Tekulve. Add in the mile high altitude and he should probably be avoided.
Individually these deals don’t raise too many eyebrows, but put together they are fairly significant. Romo was a steady performer for the Giants for a decade and then signed with the Dodgers. 2017 has been an unmitigated disaster, but changes of scenary sometimes work. Former general manager Gerry Hunsicker used to refer to it as “catching lightening in a bottle.” Any fantasy movement on him would range somewhere between a shot in the dark and a needle in a haystack. Jennings has had a considerably better season considering it has come with the White Sox. He probably fits in the same neighborhood as Phelps in terms of fantasy value. Take him on in a holds league, but otherwise hold off for now.
Duda is obviously the headliner for the Rays. He has 17 home runs on the season even though he missed time due to injury. Duda has always been a low batting average guy, but sticking him in the same lineup as Logan Morrison, Evan Longoria, Corey Dickerson, and Steve Souza could help them get over the top in the wild card chase. Moving to Tropicana Field should help his numbers as well.