Dynasty League Review — Stretch Run
Here at Pitcher List, we thought it would be fun to give the readers a look into the dynasty leagues of Pitcher List staff members. Two weeks ago I discussed the trade deadline in the Reddit Dynasty league and the trades I made to bolster up my playoff ambitions. This week, I talk about the final three weeks of our fantasy regular season and the players who effected it. Just as a point of reference, I go over free keepers and our MiLB system in my first dynasty post if you are unsure what some of the terms mean.
Excuse the blacked-out spots, but we like to swear a tad in our league chat. Mike Trout is genuinely the best player ever. ANYWAYS this week I continue my tear, going 2-0 and beating the Royals (tied with last week) helping push myself into the 2nd AL Wildcard. Danny Santana continues to do his best Javier Baez impression, having a two HR game with 0:9 BB:K ratio. For being a guy I acquired for a mid-teens draft pick with multi-position eligibility, Santana is slowly winning my heart. He’s climbing into one of my 10 keepers as well, and it’s not insane for me to think that.
danny santana is 68th overall on @Razzball's player rater before tonight's homer. what's his ADP in 2020?
— Alex Chamberlain (@DolphHauldhagen) August 31, 2019
He’s going to be prone to streaks with his lowly walk-rate but it’s hard to argue with 24 HR, 13 SB and a .290 average for a guy everyone snagged off of waivers. Jose Ramirez continued his hot streak this week with 4 HRs and 10 RBI. He’s someone that will more than likely be going in the 2nd-3rd round of redrafts next year and I will be ALL OVER that price. He showed that his almost 5 month baseball season slump was just that, and would have finished the 2nd half strong if not for being too strong and breaking his hand swinging (SPOILER FOR WEEK 20 😢). Our own Pitcher List Staff did the First Two Rounds of 2020 draft themselves and did not include him, so I will be A HAPPY DRAFTER next year. Newly Acquired Mike Tauchman had a pretty disappointing week (a trend you’ll notice over the next three weeks), only scoring 7 points and not hitting a home run. He should continue to get playing time in the near future however because he grades out so well for his defense. Until Giancarlo Stanton is back, Tauchman should be an everyday outfielder. Thankfully the other piece of that deal, Zach Britton, has been fairly steady. Making four appearances he registered 4 holds but did walk more than he struck out which isn’t ideal. He should be drafted as an elite-holds guy in 2020, but with an increasing walk-rate and decreasing strikeout-rate, I am staying away from Britton unless we hear news of velocity increase or something along those lines. Domingo Santana was awful this week going 0-10 with 7 strikeouts, more than likely thanks to his elbow injury not being fully healed. He would be placed on the IL on the Tuesday of Week 20 (very early into the week UGH) and probably won’t play again in 2020. He’s someone I will have a hard time placing for 2020 drafts, as he showcased the potential he’s always had but injuries and poor play hindered his overall numbers. I could see myself taking him anywhere in the 130-150 range of redrafts with the homerun potential but just have to remember that with it will come a ton of strikeouts.
Favorite Waiver Wire Add: Mike Ford, Made by St Louis Cardinals
The Yankees. Keep. Finding. Gems. Mike Ford might be relegated back to a part-time role now that Edwin Encarnacion is back, but he’s proven enough that he can be a valuable piece if given full-time playing time. If he can keep his strikeout rate around 15%, he could become a really good masher in the majors. In AAA this year he had a 1.007 OPS thanks to the juiced ball and had a 13% walk-rate, so he has all the tools to be a good hitter.
What a rollercoaster of a week. I went into this week in the 2nd wildcard, tied with the RD Red Sox for the 1st wildcard, and was playing the RD Yankees who were 22-16, right behind me in the standings. This could be the week I really put some distance between us and essentially guarantee myself a playoff spot. With my only two-start pitcher Reynaldo Lopez, with the Yankees having 8 starts total, would I be able to beat them?
Well, no. Unfortunately, it all came down to the final day, with me losing 282-278.5. So many little things happened this week that really ended up factoring into the decision. Reynaldo Lopez had a bad and good start, going 6 IP with 3 Ks in his first start and throwing a no-hitter into the 6th before he had to be removed for dehydration. If he ends up going another inning with a strikeout I win the matchup. Noah Syndergaard was shoving in his start against Cleveland before a rain delay would force him out of the game early. He would end up going 6 IP with only 2 hits against and 5 strikeouts. If HE goes another inning with a strikeout I win. If I had started Luis Severino, broken pitcher on my injured list, over Aaron Sanchez I would have won. This has turned out to be one of the worst moves I’ve ever made, as Sanchez had been put on the Injured List with a strained pectoral, and there’s a possibility he won’t be back until the playoffs. He went just 2.1 IP in this start, allowing 6 baserunners and 3 ER, partially thanks to his fastball/sinker velo losing 1.5 MPH from his 1st start as a Houston Astro. For 2020 if the Astros are going to try to work him out as a starter I will be interested in keeping him, but as a reliever I can’t justify it. Any of these things could have put me ahead but I can’t complain about it, cause as they say, #YCPB.
Old Albert Pujols is currently hitting the ball like he’s young again (alright kinda). Since I’ve acquired him on August 11th he’s got a 127 wRC+ walking more than he’s striking out, and with even a stolen base to boot! It more than likely won’t continue, as he’s sporting a .316 BABIP, which….. won’t continue for obvious reasons.
pure hustle pic.twitter.com/H2KGgirtvz
— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) September 1, 2019
He cost me almost nothing and helped me put up points these last couple of weeks. He won’t be kept going into 2020 but I hope he can continue to hit the ball well enough to play out his contract. Teammate Andrew Heaney was amazing this week, showcasing the upside many fantasy players pegged him for during the off-season. This week he struck out 14 Rangers, setting a personal best and going 8 IP with only 4 hits against, good for 36.5 points. He will be someone I target a ton in redraft leagues again, and will certainly be keeping him in RD unless an offer I can’t refuse comes along.
Andrew Heaney last 30 days
15.2 SwStr% (6th)
6.8 FB pVAL (3rd)
26.9 K-BB% (10th)
I liked him coming into this year and he is finally healthy. This is who I should of said on the podcast when @BasesLoadedPod asked me who I love going forward
— SP Streamer (@SpStreamer) September 2, 2019
So at the end of this week, four teams (RD Red Sox, RD Royals, RD Blue Jays, RD Yankees) are all tied at 24-16 fighting for the two AL Wild Card spots, setting up an exciting showdown.
Favorite Waiver Wire Add: Ronny Rodriguez, Made by Houston Astros
Ronny Rodriguez was an intriguing early option for fantasy owners, as he slashed .312/.357/.701 after the first month of the season, showing power while only striking out 21% of the time. He then proceeded to slash .151/.156/.280 until June 30th when he was sent down to AAA, a terrible stretch partially thanks to a 1% (yes 1%) walk-rate and 35% strikeout-rate. Since being recalled on August 11th he’s been a mix of both, with a .292 ISO but only 2.9% walk-rate. He could be a poor mans Danny Santana and the Detroit Tigers have used him all over the infield (1B, 2B, 3B, SS Elig), so he could be an interesting option if he keeps showing some growth for 2020 for the RD Astros with few keepers.
SYNDERGAARD! LOPEZ! WHY THIS WEEK OF ALL WEEKS!?!? The two worst starts I’ve had ALL year came this week in a win or go home week thanks to Syndergaard’s 3 IP, 9 ER crapfest and Lopez who couldn’t even make it out of the 1st, going 0.2 IP with 6 ER. If I get literally 10 points from both start (Syndergaard I could expect more, but lets set it at 10 for this theoretical), that TIES ME WITH THE RED SOX at 257! Ugh. Just ugh. Such a bad way for my fantasy season to come to an end. The score was 197-257
My offense was somewhat broken, as I started waiver wire addition Neil Walker (who would end up scoring me 11.5 points thanks to a HR). Danny Jansen has been slumping since he fooled everyone thinking he had broken out and has been splitting time with Reese Mcguire. He’s an interesting option for 2020 as a buy-low guy for dynasty leagues but I worry the Jays will continue doing something similar in terms of playing time. Mike Tauchman went 0-16 this week with 2 walks. Not great, and since I acquired him on August 15th has a 40 wRC+. Not great at all. If he’s moved in the off-season (which I don’t know if I see, the Yankees are proving depth is key) to another team in which he could become a regular, Tauchman would become a decent keeper option. For now though, not fantastic. Harrison Bader has been a bright spot though, as he was recalled from AAA after working on his approach and so far so good. Since being recalled on August 20th he’s walking 17.6% of the time while only striking out 15.7%, playing almost every day in CF with a .908 OPS. With him being a free keeper and having Tyler O’Neil I should hopefully have a Cardinal outfielder that will break out in 2020 (maybe O’Neil? Please my Canadian brethren?). JD Martinez continued his ballistic 2nd half, hitting 3 HR this week and scoring 39.5 points. Maybe my best trade this year, JDM is going to be an easy pick in redrafts next year as a late 1st or early 2nd rounder. Hopefully, he won’t start so slowly again, and his back issues won’t become a major problem. In Dynasty I consider him one of the safest assets to own, even with his age.
Favorite Waiver Wire Add: Seth Brown, Made by Toronto Blue Jays
The Athletics, much like the Yankees, seem to have a ton of intriguing guys stashed in their high minors over the age of 25. Seth Brown is 27 years old, has always been old for the level he’s played at and yet continues to destroy the ball. In AAA this year he had 37 HR in 112 games and should get playing time while Ramon Laureano and Stephen Piscotty are hurt. He is going to be a low-walk/high-strikeout type of bat, buy could be someone that hits 30 HRs with a palpable average.
So the playoffs should be interesting, with a lot of heavy sluggers going in the WC round (RD Brewers and Phillies two of the top 5 scorers in the league, Yankees a top 10 point scorer the last 3 weeks). For myself, I will continue to scour the WW as I think you can still find intriguing keeper options (in 2015 I picked up Rich Hill when he was starting for the Red Sox and ended up keeping him).
Thanks for reading my article! If you have any questions about dynasty, my reasoning for deals, players in general, etc, feel free to ask! I can be reached on Twitter, Reddit or here! Next piece will be my final one for the year, in which I go over the finals, the moves I plan to make, players I will be targeting through draft or trade, and all that stuff!
(Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)