Welcome to a new feature here on Vigilante Sports. It’s called Making the Trade. I’ll be going over potential trades, trades sent in from readers and trades that are proposed to me in my various fantasy leagues. If you have a trade that you’d like advice on, email email@example.com and I’ll give you my opinion.
I’m in an ESPN Standard 5×5 Head-to-Head Roto league. I got this proposal from a fellow owner after I had proposed a similar trade that he didn’t go for. I needed to change up my pitching staff (I waited until the 10th round of the draft to start drafting pitchers – and my stats were starting to show it). My pitching stats have been terrible, so I decided that I needed to make a change to my pitching roster philosophy. I decided I needed to start going after Saves, WHIP and ERA and to do so, I needed to stock up on closers. My current staff of closers was a little thin. I recently picked up Scott Downs who is filling in for injured BJ Ryan. I have George Sherrill and Francisco Rodriguez was my star pitcher. I knew I was going to have to give up value to get value.
When the other owner proposed the trade, I was really hesitant to give up Frankie (as he now prefers, over KRod) and Chipper Jones. Chipper has been a long time favorite and has been a consistent fantasy player pretty much his whole career. But Chipper is 37 years old and has been in and out of the lineup already this season. I worry about his ability to stay healthy. Not to mention I have some depth at 3B. I have Garret Atkins, Mike Lowell and Melvin Mora when he comes off the DL. Carrying 4 3B is too many, even though we do have a corner infielder slot in the starting lineup. For me, Scott Downs is a throw in. It is possible that he keeps the closer role after BJ Ryan comes off the DL, but the Blue Jays are paying Ryan an awful lot. I think he’ll get every opportunity to close games when he gets healthy.
In my mind, this trade came down to giving up Frankie and two guys that are not long term contributors on my team for 3 quality closers. The age and injury question is definitely there for Mariano Rivera (I think he’s been closing games since Billy Martin managed the Yankees). Troy Percival does not have the healthiest track record either, but he’s on a quality team that will have it’s share of save chances. For me, the jewel of this trade is Heath Bell. Granted, the Padres are not going to win very many games. But when they do, they’ll probably be close. That means a lot of save opportunities for Bell. And he’ll be closing half of his games in Petco which is a very pitcher-friendly ballpark. Bell has already been really solid for the Padres already this year (7 saves, 0 earned runs and a 0.65 WHIP).