Fantasy Baseball News
Latest Player Updates
Khris Davis was traded to the Athletics for two prospects, catcher Jacob Nottingham and pitcher Bubba Derby. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Khris Davis will likely take over left field for the A's, replacing the aging and increasingly ineffective Coco Crisp. Davis does move to a slightly better lineup in Oakland, but the park factor is a big minus for his fantasy value, as he goes from the best HR park to the fourth-worst (in 2015). His homers tend to be long ones, as all 27 from last year were long enough to clear the Coliseum's fences, but a slight downgrade in the rankings is still warranted.
RHP Frankie Montas is out 2-4 months after undergoing rib surgery. His first right rib was removed after suffering a stress reaction. (Source: Andy McCullough of the L.A. Times)
Fantasy Impact: Montas was part of the package that sent Todd Frazier to the White Sox. It's unclear whether the Dodgers plan to use Montas as a starter or a reliever, but McCullough indicated that he was probably headed to Oklahoma City to join their rotation. Keep an eye on Montas as his fastball reaches 100 mph.
Category: Injury Updates
RHP Tommy Hunter signed a Major League deal with the Indians on Friday. (Source: Jordan Bastian on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: The Indians secured the services of arguably the best remaining free agent relief pitcher. Over the last couple of years, Tommy Hunter has tossed 120 innings with a 3.57 ERA and 6.84 SO/9. He will help solidify the Indians' bullpen and has some closer experience should anything happen to Cody Allen.
Fri, Feb 12th 4:57pm EST
By Nicky Tapas
Inplausibly, Jenrry Mejia has once again tested positive for PEDs. MLB has now banned Mejia for life. (Source: Anthony DiComo on Twitter )
Fantasy Impact: Mejia becomes the first player in MLB history to ever receive a permanent suspension under the MLB drug-testing program. Mejia posed no threat to retake the Mets' closer role from Jeurys Familia in 2016. Notwithstanding, Mejia is obviously no longer fantasy relevant.
Fri, Feb 12th 4:32pm EST
By James Zeankowski
Word came out Tuesday evening that team designated hitter, Evan Gattis, underwent surgery in Philadelphia to repair a sports related hernia. He is expected to be sidelined for the next 4 to 6 weeks, which will extend into a good portion of Spring Training. The team will turn to the farm system and bench for fill ins until Gattis' return. (Source: Astros.com)
Fantasy Impact: The good news here is that some of the younger players will get some more playing time, at-bats and a chance to prove themselves. The bad news, the timetable for Gattis' return is still very much uncertain. He will miss most of the Grapefruit League, and possibly, even the first week or so of the regular season. While it is still too soon to worry or to be too complacent, fantasy holders should make their roster selections accordingly.
Category: Injury Updates
Thu, Feb 11th 10:00am EST
By Dan Schalk
The Astros won their arbitration case against veteran catcher Jason Castro on Tuesday, when a three-person panel determined he will be paid a $5 million salary this year. Castro was seeking $5.25 million. (Source: Brian McTaggert/MLB.com)
Fantasy Impact: Castro hit a paltry .211 with 11 home runs and 31 RBI for the Astros in 2015. However, Houston did not upgrade the catcher position this off-season, making Castro in-line for extended duty again behind the plate. While unlikely, if Castro can regain his 2013 form which saw him hit .276 with 18 home runs while knocking in 56 RBI he would be a solid sleeper in most fantasy formats. Castro is currently being drafted right outside the Top 20 at his position.
Wed, Feb 10th 10:23am EST
By Brad Richter
The Chicago White Sox have agreed to a one-year contract with Mat Latos for $3 million. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Latos bounced around between three different team last season (Marlins, Dodgers, Angels) and finished with a 4.95 ERA and 1.31 WHIP over 116.1 innings. The 28-year-old Latos will likely slot in as the White Sox number five starter. U.S. Cellular field will not be the best environment for fantasy success for Latos, who allow 13 home runs last season.
Shi Davidi of Sportsnet reports that the Blue Jays have signed the 2015 MVP Josh Donaldson to a two-year contract worth $28.65 million. (Source: Sportsnet)
Fantasy Impact: The two sides were only $450K off in arbitration figures that were filed and the Jays expressed a great deal of interest in a multi-year deal. After signing, Donaldson is now under team control through 2018 in a very potent offence. The reigning American League MVP batted .297 with 41 home runs, 123 RBI's, and 122 runs scored in 2015. Look for Donaldson to be one of the top picks in fantasy drafts this year, currently ranking fifth in FantasyPros consensus rankings.
The revamped Diamondbacks pitching corps added another piece leading into the 2016 season with Tyler Clippard joining on a two-year contract. He will make just over $6 million per season and join Brad Ziegler at the back end of the Diamondbacks bullpen after posting a 2.92 ERA in 2015 between Oakland and the Mets. (Source: Ken Rosenthal on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Clippard opened the season as the Athletics closer in 2015 and had 17 saves while posting a 2.79 ERA in the first half. A deadline trade to the Mets saw his home run rate bump to 1.4 per nine, but his K:BB improved after he walked nearly five batters per nine in the first half of the season and 2.8 per nine with the Mets. Clippard was known for his devasting changeup leading to strikeouts, as he has struck out more than 10 batters per nine five times in his career, but he only struck out 8.1 batters per nine last season while seeing his FIP rise to 4.28, the second-worst of his career. The biggest fear for fantasy owners that are looking for Clippard for holds is that he had a .211 BABIP in 2015, yet allowed a .184 batting average, similar to the .185 batting average he allowed in 2015 with a .251 batting average on balls in play.
Mon, Feb 8th 3:19pm EST
By Gavin Tramps
The Indians signed RHP Craig Stammen to a Minor League deal on Monday with a non-roster invite to Spring Training. (Source: Paul Hoynes on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: The 32-year-old missed most of last season with a torn tendon in his elbow. He will compete with Joba Chamberlain, Felipe Paulino and others for a spot as a right-handed pitcher in the Indians' bullpen. Between 2012-2014 Stammen made 163 appearances, throwing 242 2/3 innings with 222 strikeouts (8.2 SO/9), 2.93 ERA and 1.25 WHIP.
Sat, Feb 6th 3:08pm EST
By John Aubin
Eduardo Rodriguez said he's fixed the problem of tipping his pitches that arose last season in the major leagues, WEEI.com reports. Rodriguez's problems began June 14 in a loss to the Blue Jays, then resurfaced spectacularly June 25 against the Orioles. He retired the first 10 batters he faced, including five by strikeout, before a Chris Parmalee double got the O's rolling. Forced to pitch from the stretch, Rodriguez allowed seven straight hits and six runs before departing. He had been tipping pitches out of the stretch by the position of his head and glove. (Source: WEEI)
Fantasy Impact: Eduardo Rodriguez fixed the problem by the end of the last season, as evidenced by a 2.08 ERA in his final seven starts, and he's been working all winter on his mechanics to remove any "tell" opponents can spot. He also has been working this offseason to improve the precision of his slider and the introduction of a cutter. Rodriguez is currently being drafted at an average of 328 in early fantasy drafts but could be a sleeper and keep an eye on how he performs in Spring Training.
Travis Shaw will spend time in left field early on in training camp to determine if he's a viable option at the position, the Boston Herald reports. As it stands now, Shaw has a good shot at making Boston's roster on his infield work alone, particularly as the Red Sox try out Hanley Ramirez at first base, but adding outfield to his resume should cement a roster spot for him. (Source: Boston Herald)
Fantasy Impact: Shaw was a surprise for fantasy owners at the tail end of last season. He was brought up from the minors in August and took over the first base duties for the rest of the season. He finished the year strong hitting .270 with 13 homers in 248 plate appearances. Shaw is not draftable at this time but if the Hanley Ramirez experiment at first fails or injuries crop up, Shaw could win a job.
Jake Arrieta and the Cubs agree to a 1-year $10.7 million agreement to avoid arbitration. (Source: ESPN Chicago)
Fantasy Impact: He is coming off a Cy Young winning season. It will be difficult to match his ERA but he still is a good bet to be among the best starting pitchers in the MLB.
The White Sox have reportedly explored a trade for Dodgers OF Andre Ethier. (Source: Phil Rogers on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: The White Sox currently project a starting OF of Melky Cabrera, Adam Eaton and Avisail Garcia. Ethier could either be considered as a starter or platoon player with Garcia. The Dodgers have more than a few OFs to spare, and they've reportedly been entertaining trade offers for Ethier over the past few seasons. If Ethier would be dealt, his new role would help determine his value. He would see a boost in home park moving from LA to Chicago.
Greg Bird will undergo shoulder surgery and miss the entire 2016 season. Bird led the Yankees in home runs and RBI while replacing Mark Teixeira due to injury in 2015 and is considered to be the Yankees first baseman of the future. (Source: MLB.com)
Fantasy Impact: Bird is blocked by veterans Texeira, Rodriguez, and Beltran so, even though he is the best first baseman in the organization, he may have begun the season at AAA anyway. This is a blow to the Yankees' depth chart as Teixeira has not been able to stay on the field consistently for years. Fantasy players will have to wait one more year to own the stud prospect.
Category: Injury Updates
Mon, Feb 1st 2:41pm EST
By Steve Painter
Folty had a rib removed in late September to alleviate a buildup of blood clots. After the procedure, he was inactive for a long period and lost 20 pounds. The weight loss and the inactivity most likely mean he will not be available for ST and perhaps miss the start of the season. (Source: Dave O'Brien on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: He was roughed up pretty well in his 15 starts last season and ended up with a 5.71 ERA for the 2015 campaign. His immediate future does not look all that bright and he may spend time at triple-A Gwinett to get things rolling for the 2016 season.
Category: Injury Updates
Sun, Jan 31st 11:36pm EST
By R. A. Beltran
After signing Yoenis Cespedes, the Mets needed to clear the 40-man roster so Darrell Ceciliani was designated for assignment. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Only 25 years of age, the lefty hitting Ceciliani hit .206 with one homer and three RBIs last season. With De Aza signing with the Mets, the lefty Ceciliani became expendable. It remains to be seen if he will be back with the Mets next season.
Lefty reliever Carlos Torres was placed on waivers by the New York Mets, after failing to trade him. He became expendable, after the Mets signed Antonio Bastardo. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Torres pitched 97 innings in 73 appearances in 2014. He is a decent middle reliever, and the Mets expect him to be claimed by another team.
Doug Fister has signed a seven million, one-year deal with the Houston Astros. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Fister looks to make an immediate impact on the Astros as he joins a rotation with Keuchel, McHugh, Fiers, and McCullers. It is uncertain where in the rotation Fister would end up, as he went from an elite 2014 (2.41 ERA/1.08 WHIP/16 W) to an injury-plagued 2015 (4.19/1.40/103 IP), meaning he could slot in as high as #2, or low as #5. With a clean bill of health, the 31 year-old would make a big impact for the 'Stros, making him a nice sleeper in fantasy drafts. Monitor his elbow and fastball velocity (down from 89.8 in 2011 to 86.1 in 2015) in Spring Training before making a firm decision.
Chase Anderson has been traded to the Milwaukee Brewers in a five player deal. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Chase Anderson is an average-level pitcher who saw his numbers decline a bit in his second campaign last season, notably his ERA (4.01 in 2014 to 4.30 in 2015) and K/9 (8.27 in '14 to 6.54 in '15). However, while a move to Miller Park does the youngster no favors, his control did improve last season, as he walked the same number of bats (40) as he did the previous season despite 38 more IP. Anderson will have a shot at the rotation as the Milwaukee back end is made up of names like Wily Peralta and Zach Davies, making him worth monitoring during Spring Training. He moves up in the rankings with that in mind, as there was no spot for him in Arizona's rotation.