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Tuesday 19th Sep 2017

No I am not deranged talking about freeze decisions in October – the XFL, a 15-team experts keeper league entering its tenth season, holds its auction draft on the first weekend of November at First Pitch Arizona.

So I have one day left to submit my freeze list. The good news is that I am down to 16 players – the bad news is I can only freeze 15.

To help you understand the auction dynamics I have to explain that while we end the auction with the “standard” 23 players rostered for $260 (plus any FARM eligible prospects), we complete our 40-man rosters with a 17-round supplemental draft in March. So you can fix any roster deficiencies either via trades or with those supplemental picks.

Try as I might this season, I couldn’t get Captain Hook’s mates out of the lower third of the league, and so at the trade deadline I traded my 11th or possible 10th place finish for 12th place when I dealt Mike Napoli ($23) and Hiroki Kuroda ($9) for Jarrod Parker, a very promising starting pitcher who may well be in the Arizona Diamondbacks rotation next March (and a required ML body, in this case catcher Miguel Olivo ($7)). None of those active players were likely keepers since they faced a $5 increase to be frozen on to 2012 rosters.

After the season ended, I got busy trying to acquire more youth or players I think will exceed their freeze prices next year. So here are the trades I made:

  • Traded my first round pick in the March supplemental and Brian Bogusevic (NL) to Do Drooker for Troy Tulowitzki ($29+5) and his third round pick;
  • Traded my fourth round pick and Luis Perez (NK) to Doug Dennis for J.P. Arencibia ($1+3) and his eighth round pick;
  • Traded Drew Pomeranz ($1+3), one of my Farm players who lost value in my eyes because not only did he throw enough innings to go from Farm to Roster but was traded from Cleveland to Colorado, to Trace Wood for Ryan Vogelsong ($5+5), who I think will have another good season earning more than ten dollars; and
  • Traded my sixth round pick and an expiring Jorge Posada to Doug Dennis for Justin Smoak ($4+3) and his tenth round pick.

So now one day before I have to submit my freeze list, I put Jonathan Papelbon ($12+5) and Arodys Vizcaino ($1+3) on the trading block, hoping to turn one or both into picks in the March draft. Papelbon should make at least a small profit no matter where he signs and together with Heath Bell would solidify a strong position in saves. But it would also cost me 13 auction dollars versus keeping Vizcaino (another player who exceeded our incredibly small innings (10) trigger to kick him off the Farm). I would love to build on the fly with Vizcaino (and Parker and some well-priced hitters like Arencibia, Smoak, and Gaby Sanchez ($4+3), but if the Braves bring back most of their starters and Julio Teheran gets the last rotation spot over Vizcaino, I won’t get real value from him until 2013 at $1+3+3.

What would you do absent a trade offer?

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