July 5, 2016
Expert FAAB Review
Welcome to The FAAB Review, the series that looks at the expert bidding in LABR mixed, Tout Wars NL, and Tout Wars AL every week in an effort to try and help you, the Baseball Prospectus reader, with your fantasy baseball bidding needs. Bret Sayre and I participate in LABR mixed while I have a team in Tout Wars NL, so I can provide some insight on the bids and the reasoning behind them. LABR uses a $100 budget with one-dollar minimum bids, while the Tout Wars leagues use a $1,000 budget with zero-dollar minimum bids. I will also be including Bret’s winning bids in Tout Wars mixed auction league where applicable.
LABR and Tout Wars both use a bidding deadline of Sunday at midnight ET.
All 2016 statistics in this article were as of Sunday, July 3rd.
Brandon Maurer $14. Other bids: $14, $3, $3. Tout Auction: $77.
With $24 left to spend, we decided to be fairly aggressive and spend (opens up calculator function on smart phone) 58 percent of our remaining budget on Maurer. Unfortunately, Rudy Gamble of Razzball made the same decision and beat us to Maurer because of the standings tiebreaker. This stung even more because Fernando Rodney is on our team and has almost definitely lost the opportunity for saves thanks to his trade to the Marlins. This isn’t the end of the world for us—we were in second place entering the week and trending upward—but barring another trade or another closer losing his job it is likely we will have to wait for Aroldis Chapman to get traded at the end of the month and for our Andrew Miller to assume the ninth-inning role in the Bronx. My regret is not so much with this move but with our earlier moves of adding Jameson Taillon ($32), Shawn Kelley ($14), and Sean Manaea ($18) for a combined $64. We have a great deal of pitching depth but have had a difficult time moving any of it in trade. The Taillon injury sort of solves this problem, but not in the way I intended.
Cheslor Cuthbert $5
Mike Zunino $1. Tout Auction: $24.
Holiday FAAB periods are generally quiet, and all three mixed leagues followed this rule of thumb on America’s anniversary. In need of strikeouts, Bret sunk $242 of his budget into McCarthy in the Tout Auction league. Zunino is an intriguing pick-up in any two-catcher format, particularly if you believe he can steal enough at bats from incumbent Chris Iannetta to be relevant.
Tout Wars NL
Brandon Maurer $138. Other bids: $135, $123, $106, $101, $90, $58, $34. LABR NL: $11.
Mauricio Cabrera $75. Other bid: $28. LABR NL: $3.
Brock Stewart $30
Tommy Pham $23. Other bid: $20.
Two of the lower end purchases here were mine. I grabbed Dickerson and Friedrich. My ERA and WHIP have been destroyed, so at this point I am chasing mediocre matchups or better in hopes for wins and strikeouts. With Jon Jay on the shelf, Dickerson is splitting at bats with Travis Jankowski in the Padres outfield, with Melvin Upton shifting between left and center. Dickerson’s numbers in Triple-A were impressive, even taking the PCL into account, and I need more than a little luck on offense to make up for the deficiencies I have on the pitching side.
Tout Wars AL
Nick Franklin $37. Other bid: $5. LABR AL: $1
Mike Aviles $35. Other bids: $3, $0.
It was another extremely quiet week in Tout AL. I saw Benintendi at Double-A Trenton last Wednesday, and while Yoan Moncada is viewed as the better prospect, I came away impressed with Benintendi’s compact swing and sneaky stolen base speed. One of the other fantasy analysts I attended the game with believes that Benintendi could be up in two or three weeks. He isn’t listed on Baseball Prospectus’ Stash List, but in early July this appears to be a strong addition to a fantasy reserve list in an AL-only.