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Monday, December 17, 2012

FANTASY BASEBALL TRADE FALLOUT: DICKEY HEADS NORTH OF THE BORDER

The New York Mets and Toronto Blue Jays put the finishing touches on the trade of R.A. Dickey, who received a two-year/$25 million extension in order to get the deal to go through.  The final package has the Blue Jays sending the Mets their two top prospects, catcher Travis D'Arnaud and pitcher Noah Syndergaard, along with catcher John Buck and a lower level prospect for Dickey, a lower level prospect, and catcher Josh Thole.  With that said let's break the trade down when it comes to its effect on fantasy baseball.

R.A. Dickey:  Saying it was a shock to see Dickey win the NL Cy Young last season was a gross understatement but the knuckleballer was unbelievable in 2012 when he put up a 2.73 ERA and 1.05 WHIP to go with an insane 230 strikeouts in 233.2 innings pitched while winning 20 games on a terrible team.  Unfortunately for Dickey, his new destination couldn't be in a worse spot as he not only goes to one of the biggest offensive parks in the majors in Toronto but also plants his roots in by far the toughest division in baseball in the AL East.  A rise of at least a half a run on his ERA and .10 on his WHIP are a given and a drop in strikeouts is in the cards as well since he no longer will be feasting on opposing pitchers and the much weaker NL lineups.  Whereas Dickey as a New York Mets was a lower level SP 1 and a high level SP 2, with Toronto he is nothing but a lower level SP 2.  That is how dramatic a change of scenery will have on his stats this season.

Travis D'Arnaud:  We will be doing more on D'Arnaud tomorrow but needless to say this is a guy we have been watching closely over the last two seasons as he appears to be the next in a recent line of impact offensive catchers who came up from the minors ranging from Buster Posey to Carlos Santana.  D'Arnaud has a major league stick and is good defensively behind the plate.  He has been compared to Posey which is saying a ton since the latter just came off the NL MVP award.  D'Arnaud hit 16 home runs in only 67 Triple-A games last season which is eye-opening and he has posted a bunch of .300 averages on the farm.  The only issue with D'Arnaud is injuries as he has missed time during each of his last three minor league campaigns.  This is a decent worry since D'Arnaud plays the injury-inducing catching position but we will try and look past this as we look to the kid as a big time sleeper.  We have always preached waiting on drafting a catcher early each spring and instead focused on targeting young prospect catchers who are on the verge of being promoted.  D'Arnaud has as much potential as anyone the last few seasons and the catching position is wide open when it comes to the New York Mets.  Go get him.

The rest of the package of Buck and Thole have no fantasy baseball value which means it is not worth even discussing what they can do.  Dickey clearly has lost some sizzle while D'Arnaud is a fine sleeper you all should be on this season.

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