Fantasy Baseball Trade Advice: Prospects to Trade in Dynasty
The 2023 season is among us. We finally have a regular off-season, and it has been nice not to worry about whether baseball will be played this season. The fun thing about playing in a dynasty league is that it is a year-round deal. In most dynasty leagues, you can make trades throughout the off-season. It creates buying opportunities before players take off. Also, you can trade prospects with high value that could fall off. Today, I will highlight several prospects you should look to acquire in a dynasty league before their stock takes off.
A general rule I like to follow is that prospects are always available to trade in the right deals. Flags fly forever, and prospects don’t help your dynasty teams win a pennant. The typical best times to trade a prospect are:
- The day they are called up
- After a strong season
- After draft day when there is hype
When trading prospects, I typically want to get off of a prospect before they begin a downward turn which depletes their value. So who are the prospects to sell?
Prospects To Trade Away in Dynasty
Ceddanne Rafaela (OF – BOS)
I won’t claim to be the starter of the Ceddanne Rafaela hype train when the season began, but I was unfamiliar with his name when I saw him on MiLB Opening Weekend in Greenville. He caught my eye quickly after a stellar performance in the field and with his bat. Rafaela had an excellent season that finished in Double-A with a combined slash of .299/.342/.539. In 522 plate appearances, he posted a solid 21 home runs and 28 stolen bases.
You are probably asking, if he had such a good year, then why are you selling? Well, it starts with the chase rate. It is hard to survive with a chase rate over 40 percent, and Rafaela has one higher. To put it nicely, pitching in High-A was not very good this year, and we saw his batting average drop over .050 points after the move from High-A to Double-A.
Rafaela is a good hitter with good speed. His power played up a bit in hitting friendly parks in High-A. The plate discipline skills are concerning as well. He is a sell because many have moved him into their top 50s, but I think he is a back-end top 100 prospect.
Luis Matos (OF – SF)
Luis Matos doesn’t fall into any of the prospect sell categories I previously mentioned. But if you can get off of him in a dynasty league, I probably would. I may still be high on him in my rankings due to the upside. But the power and speed upside seemed a bit limited last year as he managed just 11 home runs and stolen bases a piece across 407 High-A plate appearances.
Matos missed a good chunk of the season due to injuries that could have affected his performance. He finished his final 30 games after getting healthy with five home runs, six stolen bases, and a .275 batting average. A trip to the Arizona Fall League was supposed to help him build on that strong finish. Unfortunately, he slashed just .233/.280/.361 with two home runs in 93 plate appearances.
Matos has a high ceiling, but there are concerns with his plate discipline and his ultimately reaching that high ceiling. There is a low floor which is why I suggest trading him.
Esteury Ruiz (OF – OAK)
Esteury Ruiz fits the perfect sell-high off a strong performance in dynasty if you can. Between a short MLB stint and the minors, Ruiz stole 86 bases and hit 16 home runs. His MILB slash line between Double and Triple-A checked in at .332/.447/.526. The numbers would make it seem that Ruiz is a stud.
There are several red flags in the profile here. First, he was traded to Oakland. Maybe you see that as a good thing because he will get the chance to play every day. That is true, but the ballpark and lineup context will be horrific.
If you want to draft Ruiz as a speed-only option, that is fine. But his hard hit and exit velocity numbers were meager last season. The home runs played up in hitter-friendly environments in the minors. His contact skills are fine, but we have seen struggles with breaking balls. It leaves me wondering if MLB pitchers could exploit him with breakers. Players that only excel in stolen bases typically don’t make everyday players, which is my fear with Ruiz.
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