The Daily Grind: Leverage, Godley, Owens


  1. Keeper League Leverage
  2. Daily DFS – Godley
  3. Tomorrow’s Targets – Owens, Nuno, Montero, Barnes, Stubbs
  4. Factor Grid

1. Keeper League Leverage

With the real world non-waiver trade deadline ancient history, fantasy trade deadlines are fast approaching. We’ve touched upon the topic of leverage before, but it’s worth reiterating. Sellers, in their zeal to acquire talent for next season, usually give away all of their leverage in keeper trades. Buyers can usually wait for whichever owner panics first.

Unless there are only one or two buyers, the leverage should reside with the seller. They don’t have to do anything. In one league, I own an unkeepable Aroldis Chapman. There are three owners neck-and-neck at the top of the standings. One of them repeatedly engages me on a Chapman trade then tells me “he’s not worth anything to you (me),” to justify his low ball offers.

While I’d like Chapman to turn into a nice keeper, I’m not giving him away. If nobody is willing to break the bank for the best reliever in baseball, I’ll simply withhold him from the competition. The best offer I’ve received so far is an $8-to-keep Brandon Crawford. Honestly, it’s tempting. I may accept it.

However, it also highlights why I don’t need to do that deal. Crawford was on the waiver wire for awhile. Many of my best players – D.J. LeMahieu, Gerardo Parra, Justin Turner, Joe Panik, Mike Moustakas, Alex Rodriguez, Devon Travis, and nearly all of my pitchers were either undrafted or cost less than $3. I can keep all of those players for between $8 and $10 if I so choose. I feel no urgency to swap Chapman for somebody I can probably replace via the waiver wire.

A seller’s leverage usually breaks down because too many teams are trying to sell. It’s a supply and demand issue. Some call this a feature of keeper leagues, I think it’s a bug. One of the purposes of a keeper league is to help non-contending owners remain active and interested. Receiving offers of barely keepable shortstops for the best player at a position isn’t going to tide a guy over until next spring.

Sellers should recognize that buyers are the only people who need to make a trade. Maybe you’ll have to pay too much to beat somebody else’s offer. Just make sure you’re getting a Paul Goldschmidt in the process. If the guy is marginal, it can sometimes be better to pass altogether.

2. Daily DFS – Godley

Early: Ervin Santana and David Price share the lone early game. It’ll be interesting to see if Santana can survive the Blue Jays onslaught. I’m tempted to sit every pitcher against the Blue Jays – Kershaw included. Luckily, I won’t have to make that particular decision.

Late: I’ll pass on Felix Hernandez at Coors Field. I’m sure he’ll do fine with his excellent changeup, but I’m not paying $11,000 on FanDuel for that stadium. For $300 more, Corey Kluber looks like a much safer play against a cold Angels team. Francisco Liriano is a promising high risk, high reward play against the Cubs. He’s another lefty with a great changeup.

I was all for exploiting Zack Godley in his first major league start. But he impressed me with a good cutter. I’d like to see him use his change and curve a little more frequently as both appear to be above average pitches. He’s opposed by a decent Nationals offense. With the bad version of Doug Fister making a start, Godley has a decent shot at a win. At $6,200, he costs over $5,000 less than Kluber.

Lance McCullers is another high risk, high reward pick.

Stack Targets: Eddie Butler, Tyler Wilson, Mike Foltynewicz, Fister, Colby Lewis, Matt Cain, Nate Karns, Jose Quintana

3. Tomorrow’s Targets – Owens, Nuno, Montero, Barnes, Stubbs

Pitchers to Start: Although I’d rather chat about Corbin, I suppose we should discuss Henry Owens‘ debut. The Red Sox prospect is a promising left-hander. Kiley McDaniel ranked him the 33rd best prospect entering the season. His 2015 minor league numbers leave something to be desired, but he’s improved over the course of the season. The profile compares favorably to Cole Hamels. He works between 90 and 95 with his fastball and throws a 70-grade changeup.

I’m more eager to acquire him in keeper formats. Expect something around a fantasy average pitcher in 12-team mixed leagues. Over his last five minor league appearances, he tossed 31.2 innings with 34 strikeouts, 24 hits, and eight walks.

Also consider: Pat Corbin

Pitchers to Exploit: Mariners lefty Vidal Nuno is back in the rotation in the place of J.A. Happ. The game is at Coors and Nuno isn’t stretched out for a lengthy outing. I’ll be surprised if he gets to five innings. Nuno actually has some upside as a starter. He’s like a softer throwing Happ.

Also consider: Jerome Williams, Danny Duffy, Brad Hand, Chris Rusin

Hitters (power): Jesus Montero is back on the fantasy radar. After mashing in Triple-A, he’s performed well in a small 21 plate appearance sample. Check to see if he’s in the lineup today, he’s day-to-day after a collision. Montero features 20 to 25 home run potential with a solid average. His aggressive approach assures a reasonable strikeout rate. He seems to be hitting the ball harder this year at both levels.

Also consider: Juan Uribe, Stephen Piscotty, Adonis Garcia, Darin Ruf, Jeff Francoeur, Andre Ethier, Chris Young

Hitters (speed): With Corey Dickerson back on the disabled list, one of Brandon Barnes or Drew Stubbs will start against Nuno. Barnes is a solid if unexciting hitter with a hint of speed and pop. Stubbs is the more dynamic play, but he’s struggling to see the ball (44.8 percent strikeout rate).

Also considerJace Peterson, Rajai Davis

4. The Factor Grid

The table below indicates which stadiums have the best conditions for hitters today. The color coding is a classic stoplight where green equals go for hitters. The weather conditions are from SI Weather’s home run app. A 10/10 means great atmospheric conditions for home runs. A 1/10 means lousy atmospheric conditions.

One storm risk in Pittsburgh (50 percent), and a few choice hitter’s parks.

The Link.

This post is not brought to you by Mel Gibson. He’s a racist. And a homophobe. 

We hoped you liked reading The Daily Grind: Leverage, Godley, Owens by Brad Johnson!

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Jeff Zimmerman

I didn’t Brad the GB/FB Hitters to target. Today’s players are in this document:

Goldsteins dumb fedora
Goldsteins dumb fedora

Jeff I dont think those are todays pitchers.