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Players to Buy Low & Sell High (2022 Fantasy Baseball)

Jun 28, 2022

Winning the trade market is at least as important as nailing the draft. The waiver wire holds significant value throughout the season’s first week or two. But after that, trading is by far the best way to significantly improve your team in an instant. A good buy-low deal will have you reaping the rewards come playoff time. On the flipside, a strong sell-high deal will allow you to capitalize on a player’s peak value before his performance eventually comes back down to earth. Our featured analysts are back to share their top undervalued and overvalued trade candidates at this point in the season.

Q1. Which one MLB player are you trying to buy low and why? Also, who are you willing to give up for him?

Lucas Giolito (SP – CWS) 
“Lucas Giolito isn’t as bad as he has looked at times this season. His 5.40 ERA is nearly two runs higher than the 3.53 number he pitched to over 178 2/3 innings in 2021, when he also happened to strike out 201 batters. His underlying numbers are somewhat split on just how much his numbers are expected to normalize. His FIP (5.08) and xERA (5.23) seem to believe that his 5.40 ERA isn’t far off from what he has earned, while his xFIP (3.72) and SIERA (3.69) tell a different story. I’m inclined to side with SIERA and xFIP on this one, and I think his BABIP (.360) and inflated HR/FB (20.3% after four consecutive seasons somewhere around the 13% mark) will regress to something more closely resembling his career averages. I’d be willing to swap a fellow underperformed like Alex Bregman to facilitate a deal. ”
Mike Maher (FantasyPros)

Lucas Giolito – His most recent outing may have changed the narrative a bit — two earned runs allowed and six strikeouts over six innings — but Giolito’s season-long numbers are still a far cry from what we have seen in the past. His ERA is nearly one run higher than his career average, while his hard-hit percentage is in the bottom seven percent of the league. Therein lies the value of acquiring Giolito, as almost all of his struggles are tied to allowing barrels and hard contact at an uncharacteristic rate. There’s obvious risk that he has an underlying issue yet to be discovered, but his past history is enough to warrant a trade — probably for a well-established and clearly above-average batter.”
Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

J.T. Realmuto (C/1B – PHI) 
“Whether it be injury, mechanical issue or both, Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto has been an utter disappointment so far this year, showing very little pop while slashing .237/.316/.364 with just five home runs as we inch towards the halfway point of the season. There is reason for optimism though, as two of JT’s five long balls on the year have come in just the past three games. Additionally, while the absence of Bryce Harper is likely cost the Phillies lineup overall, it could be a boon for Realmuto’s offensive prospects: (1) Realmuto should slide up a spot or two in the order and could even end up batting third with regularity if he can get hot, and (2) additional at-bats at DH will open up with Harper on the IL, allowing the team to give Realmuto a break in the field from time to time. Realmuto is still heavily rostered but may come at a discount following a down couple of months, and I would flip a number of current top-50 bats, including Joc Pederson, Bobby Witt Jr., Christian Walker and Charlie Blackmon, for Realmuto if given the chance.”
Wayne Bretsky (BretskyBall)

Check out our trade values for all players in our weekly Fantasy Baseball Trade Value Chart >>

Q2. Which one MLB player are you trying to sell high right now and why? Also, who would you try to get in return?

Brandon Drury (2B/3B/DH/OF – CIN) 
“Brandon Drury is a nice story, but he isn’t THIS good. After batting .224 in April and .237 in May, he’s batting .337 with seven home runs in June. He has 15 home runs through 62 games after hitting just 51 combined through his first seven years in the big leagues. The Reds are his sixth team in the last six years, and he’s likely to be dealt again ahead of this year’s trade deadline. The Statcast data for this year is mostly solid, and his quality of contact is up. His numbers aren’t that unbelievable, but this is about selling high on a player BEFORE his value plummets. He’s one cold streak or a trade to a worse situation with less playing time away from being essentially worthless. Roll the dice and trade him in a package for someone like Lucas Giolito or Kris Bryant.”
Mike Maher (FantasyPros)

Nestor Cortes (SP – NYY) 
“It’s been an absolutely magical ride for Nestor Cortes, and while his season numbers still look really nice (2.51 ERA, 0.99 WHIP), he’s fallen off just a bit of late, allowing 12 earned runs over his past four starts (18 IP, 5.68 ERA and 1.37 WHIP). He’ll be a useful arm moving forward in all leagues, but if you can sell the overall stat line for an arm like Lance Lynn, Pablo Lopez or Yu Darvish, I would be willing to bail on Cortes.”
Wayne Bretsky (BretskyBall)

Isaac Paredes (2B/3B – TB) 
“Isaac Paredes. In Paredes’ prior seasons in Major League Baseball, he combined for a total of two home runs. In one game against the Yankees this year, he hit three. It is always possible that the Rays and their outstanding scouting department found a gem in Paredes, but it’s just as likely that his recent hot stretch has pushed him into the spotlight, and he won’t remain there for long. Most of his numbers are still trying to stabilize and provide a clearer picture of where he can project to land, but the hype is inflating his stock to the point that it’s probably wise to cash out for a low-end starter or a reliever who is in the mix for saves.”
Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

Thank you to the experts for naming their trade candidates. Make sure to give them a follow on Twitter for more great advice all season and check out our Leading Off Podcast every single day for quick-hitting takeaways and advice.


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