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Saturday, July 30, 2016

FANTASY BASEBALL TRADE DEADLINE FALLOUT: MATT KEMP HEADS EAST AS PART OF ATLANTA REBUILD, HECTOR OLIVERA GETS FRESH START WITH PADRES

The San Diego Padres are tearing it all down and trying to replenish a farm system that was totally decimated when they swung all those trades prior to the 2015 season that would have made any fantasy baseball veteran proud.  One of those players was power-hitting outfielder Matt Kemp, who far from his past as a five-tool stud, continued to post good home run and RBI totals for the Padres during his stay there.  The Padres capitalized on that by agreeing to send him to the Atlanta Braves for troubled prospect Hector Olivera.  In order to make the deal work financially, the Padres are also sending $10-12 million over to the Braves to help pay Kemp's contract.  Now lets get to the particulars:

Matt Kemp:  Going into Saturday's action, Kemp was having a nice season with 23 home runs, 69 RBI, and a .262 average.  With zero stolen bases on the season, the 31-year-old Kemp is showing he is no longer anywhere near the five-category first round star he was just a few seasons ago.  Rampant and serious shoulder and leg injuries have robbed Kemp of almost all his speed but his power is still playing very well.  23 home runs while calling Petco Park home is a very impressive tally and Kemp actually gets a slight ballpark improvement going to Atlanta.  While the park there still favors the pitcher, Kemp will benefit a bit going there.  The bigger picture also entails how Kemp will be part of the rebuild in Atlanta and serve as very good and much-needed protection in the lineup for Freddie Freeman.  Freeman has been on an island all his own the last two seasons and that has really hurt his RBI and run totals and also allowed pitchers to pitch around him.  That will be less of an issue with Kemp in town.  Considering the power, Kemp is still holding his OF 3 tag. 

Hector Olivera:  The same age as Kemp at 31, the troubled Olivera gets a fresh start in San Diego after being suspended by MLB 82 games for being involved in a domestic fight with his significant other.  Getting close to a return as the suspension gets set to finish, Olivera will now get a clear chance to show what he can do as an everyday player in San Diego.  There is still open debate as to how good or even moderate a player Olivera can be but at least he will get a shot. He should not be added in anything but deep leagues. 


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