5 Players to Trade (2019 Fantasy Baseball)
Last week we checked in on players that our writers were desperately trying to trade for in their fantasy baseball leagues. This week, we’ll look at players that our writers are attempting to unload on other owners.
Which player are you trying to sell the most in fantasy baseball?
Rhys Hoskins (1B – PHI)
Hoskins will be a controversial pick for many, and I wouldn’t necessarily advise selling him in keeper leagues. But those in redrafts should be pounding the pavement to see if they can get good value for him. While Hoskins’ 13 HR, 42 RBI, and .927 OPS on the season look great, they’re hiding a very one-dimensional approach that has been the beneficiary of lots of luck thus far. Hoskins’ xSLG on the season rests at .429, the same rate as players like Brandon Drury and Jean Segura, and more than 100 points below his .531 actual SLG. While Hoskins’ heavy pull fly ball approach will always lead to some xStat overperformance, it’s difficult to envision him sustaining a .326 BABIP with a league-leading 24-degree launch angle. Sell now before he goes through an inevitable one-month dry spell.
– Nick Gerli (@nickgerliPL)
Hyun-Jin Ryu (SP – LAD)
630.2. That’s how many innings the 32-year-old Ryu has pitched in his entire MLB career. Since after the 2013 season, Ryu has not had one single full, healthy season. There’s no denying that Ryu is pitching like a Cy Young candidate for one of the best teams in baseball, but that is exactly what makes him such a great sell. Inevitably, this guy is going to get hurt before the season ends. Trade him for a second or third round bat before that happens.
– Alex Altmix (@altmix_23)
Austin Riley (3B/OF – ATL)
It pains me to do this because I’ve been such a huge fan of Riley so far, but his trade value is never going to be higher. Riley has burst onto the scene this year. In his first 16 games, the “Baby Brave” smacked eight homers to go along with 22 RBI. That’s phenomenal, and since you picked him up off waivers you’ve gotten that production for free. Now it’s time to cash in. Entering Monday night Riley has a strikeout rate of 35.2%, which would’ve ranked third highest in 2018 behind only Chris Davis and Joey Gallo. Players such as Gallo, Giancarlo Stanton, and Javier Baez have shown us it’s possible to be an elite fantasy player while also striking out a bunch, but it’s still an anomaly. Riley needs to crush the ball nearly every time he makes contact if he is going to be striking out this much. It’s doable but unlikely. That’s what makes him a “sell” right now.
– Brendan Tuma (@toomuchtuma)
Eduardo Escobar (3B/SS – ARI)
In the past, Escobar has been an undervalued fantasy asset. He’s posted back-to-back 20-homer campaigns and provided modest contributions in batting average and run production. This year, he’s provided owners with anything but modest production batting .288 with 15 home runs and 48 RBI. However, he leads the league with the most non-barreled home runs with six and his barrels per batted ball event (BBE) is down from last season. He’s benefited from increasing his pulled fly ball rate but Chase Field is no longer the hitter’s haven it once was. The difference between his wOBA (.383) and xwOBA (.309) is the largest gap among qualified hitters. Owners should be looking to sell Escobar to someone who believes there’s a slim chance he could reach his current on-pace numbers of 40 homers and 129 RBI.
– Max Freeze (@FreezeStats)
Starling Marte (OF – PIT)
While I don’t have any shares of him, I would be seeking out offers for Starling Marte. His exit velocity is two ticks below his 2018 average exit velo, which could be a sign that his abdominal wall injury from April is still bothering him. Sure, Marte bunts a decent amount (six times in 2019 so far, and bunting impacts average exit velo), but his exit velo on flies and liners ranks just 199th in all of baseball. Given that he already has seven homers, he’ll likely get to 20 homers. But, that means significantly less in this homer-crazy environment. Hang onto him if you desperately need the steals, but you should see what the market is for Marte before he potentially hits the IL or continues to struggle to make hard contact.
– Carmen Maiorano (@cmaiorano3)