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Fantasy Baseball Trade Advice: Pablo Lopez, Whit Merrifield, Bryson Stott

Fantasy Baseball Trade Advice: Pablo Lopez, Whit Merrifield, Bryson Stott

Fantasy baseball is a marathon, not a sprint. Unlike other fantasy sports, the season is long and drags as the weeks roll on. However, because it is such a grind, fantasy managers can lose focus on what is important and what is not, which allows astute fantasy managers to take advantage.

When we are getting to the halfway point of the season, we are really beginning to see the trends and who might be underrated and overrated. However, hot streaks and cold streaks can scare your competition, and sometimes underlying numbers aren’t showing up on the surface numbers quite yet. If someone in your league is ready to overreact, then take advantage of their impatience. Here are some players that I would try and buy low and sell high on at this point in the season.

FantasyPros My Playbook

Fantasy Baseball Trade Advice

Buy Low

Vlad Guerrero Jr. (TOR)
Guerrero has had an ok season thus far, hitting .274/.347/.445 with 12 home runs and four stolen bases. However, this is an elite hitter with better underlying numbers than the surface stats. His xBA is .307, and his xSLG is .549. He has a better barrel rate than last season, and his power is still elite. If you can get any discount on him, I would.

Ryan Mountcastle (COL)
Mountcastle is still on the IL, so this is the perfect time to buy. He should be back right after the All-Star Break, as he is already on a rehab assignment. Prior to getting put on the IL, he was one of the unluckier hitters in baseball with an xBA of .264 while his average was just .227 and an xSLG of .529, which is over 100 points above his .421 slugging percentage. This is a true buy-low.

Pablo Lopez (MIN)
This isn’t the first time I have written about Lopez as a buy-low, but time is running out on your ability to do so. Lopez has the third-best xERA in baseball at 3.09 and more than a full run more on his actual ERA. He has a career-best strikeout rate and the second-best WHIP of his career. The only thing that can stop him from having a huge second half is injury, and right now, he is healthy and pitching well.

Sell High

Whit Merrifield (TOR)
Merrifield has had a nice season, hitting .282/.339/.361 with two home runs and 18 stolen bases this year, and was just chosen for the All-Star Game. However, his xBA is just .253 because he is running a pretty high BABIP. He will likely continue to steal, but because he hits at the bottom of the lineup, he is likely just a stolen base only guy moving forward.

Bryson Stott (PHI)
Stott has had a nice first half, hitting .294/.331/.416 with seven home runs and 14 stolen bases. However, his xBA is .262, and his xSLG is just .364. If these numbers regress back in the second half, he could not only be less useful in fantasy, but he could lose his job.

Jose Berrios (TOR)
Berrios has been up and down this season, throwing 101 innings with a 3.74 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP while striking out 95. However, he is getting lucky on balls in play with a .290 BABIP and in his strand rate. He has a 4.71 xERA and is giving up worse than league average zone contact. I think there are going to be bigger bumps in the second half, and would try to sell.

Josiah Gray (WAS)
Gray has been fantastic this season, throwing 95.1 innings with a 3.30 ERA and 86 strikeouts this season. However, he has a 1.38 WHIP because he is walking too many guys. His xERA is 4.20, and his SIERA is 4.78. While I was a big fan of his new approach earlier in the season, I am worried it will all unravel.


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