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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

FANTASY BASEBALL TRADE FALLOUT: CHOO TO THE REDS, BAUER TO THE INDIANS

Another day and another big trade during this massively busy MLB Hot Stove season.  Let's get to the latest one that came down the chute late Tuesday night as the Indians, Diamondbacks, and Reds completed a blockbuster move that has clear effects on the upcoming fantasy baseball season.  Let's dig in and find out how.

Shin-Soo Choo (traded from Cleveland to Cincinnati):  The biggest name in the deal was Choo who has quietly been one of the more effective five tool outfielders in fantasy baseball the last four years.  After a terrible 2011 that was undermined by injury and an arrest for DUI, Choo was back to his power/speed self in 2012 as he hit .283 with 16 home runs and 21 steals hitting out of the leadoff spot.  Choo was a 20/20 guy hitting third both in 2009 and 2010 and he should make another run at that mark again this season in his new environment.  Choo will enter a much more homer friendly park in Cincinnati and at 31-years-old, is still in his prime.  We have always been big Choo fans and told anyone who would listen to draft him last season as a big time value play off his rough 2011.  He certainly delivered on our optimism and remains a rock solid outfielder 2 in fantasy baseball.

Drew Stubbs:  Stubbs and his historically bad strikeout numbers head south to Arizona but the trade does little to help his sagging fantasy baseball value.  Whereas Stubbs garnered a lot of positive pub in 2011 when he .243 with 15 home runs and 40 steals, he found himself cast to scores of waiver wires last season as the average was beyond pathetic at .213 as he struck out a ridiculous 166 times in only 493 at-bats.  Stubbs also hit one less home runs and also lost 10 steals.  Manager Dusty Baker was open about his disappointment in Stubbs and once removed from the leadoff spot where he is ill-suited due to the strikeouts, had a tough time finding a spot for him to bat.  He gets a clean slate with the Diamondbacks but again questions remain about his overall worth.  The average is not going to get much better unless he curbs the strikeouts and he has shown no sign of doing so.  That means the positives he supplies in steals and in some home runs are wiped away under the mammoth K's.  Overall we don't like Stubbs' outlook at all since guys with his batting averages are non-starters in our opinion.  It is always annoying having to cover for guys like this and the instant negative he brings to your team average is not worth the effort.

Trevor Bauer:  It is crazy how fast the Diamondbacks gave up on the electric arm of Bauer who many in the game lauded as one of the best pitching prospects in the game going into 2012.  He crashed and burned in his cameo with the team last season, pitching to an awful ERA of 6.06 and a WHIP of 1.65.  He is a big time strikeout guy with a fastball that hits close to 100-mph but the lack of control is major impediment to his progress.  Going to the American League is a giant negative and surely won't help matter.  Whereas we were intrigued with Bauer in the NL, going to the Cleveland Indians in the DH-league is a non-starter given his bad control. 

The rest of the pieces in the deal are not worth mentioning when it comes to fantasy baseball but the next big deal is right around the corner.  As usual we will bring you all the latest as it happens.

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