Happy Kokomo Friday, especially for you Dodgers fans out there! You can read all about the trades below but I want to focus on a few awesome pitching performances here at the top. First up, Luis Patiño dominated the Yankees. He went six shutout innings with eight strikeouts, adding 19 swinging strikes on 97 pitches. It was a masterful performance, he's a big-name prospect, and he's only 25% rostered. Add him!
Shout out to Frankie Montas for holding down my name's sake. The dude is on fire, this time shutting out the Angels over seven innings with 10 strikeouts. He leads all qualified starting pitchers in swinging strike rate for the month of July thanks in large part to that awesome splitter. If you kept the faith, you should feel pretty awesome about having Montas on your Fantasy team.
The Dodgers Debacle!
It's certainly not a debacle if you're a Los Angeles Dodgers fan, of course, but boy oh boy did we see one of the wildest deadline trades in the last decade on Thursday. The Dodgers acquired not one, but two recent first-round Fantasy Baseball picks -- and two of the best players in baseball. On Thursday, the Dodgers acquired SS Trea Turner and SP Max Scherzer from the Nationals in exchange for a "prospect haul" that includes C Keibert Ruiz and SP Josiah Gray as the two main pieces plus two mid-range prospects, according to Ken Rosenthal. We all knew the Dodgers were in the mix to land Scherzer, but no one expected they would receive a package that included Turner, too.
Scherzer has been the SP15 in fantasy points per game. He made a start Thursday and went six innings allowing one run with five strikeouts -- his ERA is now down to 2.76 with a 0.89 WHIP and 147 strikeouts in 111 IP. Under the hood, Scherzer has been just as impressive with a 16.4% swinging strike rate -- a career high -- and his velocity still looks fine. He's a free agent after the season.
So who gets the boot in the rotation? Well this complicates things because the team also acquired Danny Duffy via trade. Scott broke down how the rotation projects to shake out now and what Turner's addition means for the rest of the Dodgers hitters in his in-depth trade breakdown.
Turner is in the final year of arbitration and currently on the COVID IL but was batting .322 with 18 homers and 21 steals. He is the No. 5 ranked player in Roto and joining a lineup that was second in baseball in runs per game at 5.18. The interesting part is how this will play out when everybody is healthy? Seager is likely to stick at shortstop and could return from the IL on Friday when Turner joins the team. The expectation now is that Turner will start at 2B with Justin Turner at 3B and Max Muncy at 1B. Then your outfield is Mookie Betts, Cody Bellinger and a combination of Chris Taylor and A.J. Pollock. This is the most stacked of stacked lineups.
So what about the supposed prospect haul the Nationals got in return? Well it really comes down to the big two.
Ruiz, a 23-year-old catcher, is crushing AAA with a .311 batting average and 16 home runs to go along with a 1.012 OPS. He's 9% rostered. Gray has thrown 198 minor league innings with a 2.41 ERA and 0.93 WHIP. He's pitched eight innings in the majors this season with a 20.8% swinging strike rate and is 47% rostered.
Scott views Gray as a priority add in Fantasy leagues due to his swing and miss ability. Sure the results haven't been great, but he has the strikeout upside to be a Fantasy factor at a position where there is always a need. He has a better chance of sticking with the Nationals than the Dodgers. And while Ruiz is likely also MLB-ready with his contact rate and the power profile he has developed, it's possible he won't start out with the Nationals. Also, because so many hitter prospects have had trouble transitioning to the majors this year, it's a wait-and-see approach. Having said that, in two-catcher leagues -- scoop him right now!
Fantasy Baseball Today Newsletter
Your Cheat Code To Fantasy Baseball
You're destined to gain an edge over your friends with advice from the award-winning FBT crew.
Thanks for signing up!
Keep an eye on your inbox.
There was an error processing your subscription.
Yankees add another power bat
After trading for Joey Gallo the day before, the Yankees were back at it and acquired another power bat in Cubs 1B Anthony Rizzo on Thursday. The Yankees sent the Cubs 24-year-old pitcher Alexander Vizcaino (throws hard but has been hurt, bounced between SP and RP) and 19-year-old outfielder Kevin Alcantara (big upside with power and speed).
Rizzo is turning 32 in 10 days. He hasn't had the best 2021 season with a .248 average and 14 homers to go along with a 10% walk rate, 16% strikeout rate, and a career-high exit velocity and hard hit rate. He has been nursing this back injury all season. In the past seven games, Rizzo has three homers and a .308 average.
Here's the fun fact from Scott: If Rizzo had played all of his games at Yankee Stadium this season, based on the distance the balls have traveled on contact, he would have 23 home runs right now. Scott thinks this change in scenery will really help Rizzo and the stock is way up. It's time to buy low -- or buy now.
Other noteworthy trades
- Kyle Schwarber to the Red Sox ($11.5 mil mutual option) for pitching prospect Aldo Ramirez.
- Cesar Hernandez to the White Sox for pitcher Konnor Pilkington.
- Brad Hand to the Blue Jays.
- Daniel Hudson to the Padres -- Kyle Finnegan gets his first save on Thursday.
- Diego Castillo to the Mariners for reliever JT Chargois and 3B prospect Austin Shenton.
- Ryan Tepera to the Cubs.
- Names we could still see moved on Friday: Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Craig Kimbrel, Trevor Story, Jose Berrios, Richard Rodriguez, Jon Gray.
More news and notes
- Angels OF Mike Trout received an MRI on Thursday and was encouraged with the results. Even with that, he remains without a timetable. The Angels are also considering moving Trout to a corner outfield spot.
- Phillies OF Bryce Harper was removed from Game 2 of Thursday's doubleheader with back spasms. He's dealt with this off and on all season.
- Red Sox 3B Rafael Devers was out Thursday with that quad injury, as expected.
- White Sox OF Eloy Jimenez was also out with that groin strain.
- After getting HBP on his elbow Wednesday, Lourdes Gurriel had X-rays come back negative and is considered day-to-day.
- Phillies 1B Rhys Hoskins exited Thursday with a left groin injury.
- Cubs 2B Nico Hoerner was placed on the IL with a right oblique strain.
- Yankees SP Luis Severino will begin a minor-league rehab assignment Tuesday.
- Giants SS Brandon Crawford returned and went 1-3 with a double and two RBI
- Reds 2B Mike Moustakas could begin a rehab assignment at Triple-A early next week. He's 65% rostered.
- Terry Francona will step away for the remainder of the season to focus on health issues. Get well soon, Tito.
- Hector Santiago has been suspended for 80 games after testing positive for exogenous testosterone. At least it wasn't beaver tranquilizer.
Best hitter matchups for Week 19
1. Blue Jays
Worst hitter matchups for Week 19