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Sunday 25th Feb 2018

It is that time of year, whereby if you are in a keeper league, you have to pare your team down--or sometimes even fill spots-- to meet freeze requirements prior to drafting.

And, while I am making decisions about my own freeze lists, I also get questions about who to keep, who to trade, and who to dump.

Well, Shaune Beatty sent a real poser last week, so I want to take a look at Shaune's offers.

First, and this is the most important aspect of thinking about any trade, Shaune gave me some league parameters.

14-Team League.

Head to Head.

Over ten-year league.

This year we keep 9-12 players. Contracts are 3 years only. 

Contracts renew when traded. Expire Yr in ( ).
Compete in following 6x6 areas:

On top of that, Shaune says he expects to go into the draft protecting 9 hitters and 3 starting pitchers.

Who would you rather keep out of the following deals? I would have either for two more years.
Zack Greinke or Wil Myers?

Well, to start, I would keep Myers under just about all circumstances.


TRADE: Cliff Lee (must trade), Jose Bautista (one year left), Craig Kimbrel (must trade), Zack Greinke OR Wil Myers (both two years left)
GET: Joey Votto, Giancarlo Stanton, Jose Fernandez
* I could likely keep Greinke/Myers if I pull Jose.


TRADE: Cliff Lee (must trade), Joey Bats (one year left), Craig Kimbrel (must trade), Zack Greinke OR Wil Myers (both two years left)
GET: Miguel Cabrera, Ryan Braun, Justin Verlander.

Now, I have to say these are both really great offers, but the set-up of Shaune's league makes me go in a different manner.

Normally, I would edge towards the troika of Votto, Stanton and Fernandez, looking for the youth and contracts that would help me this year and make me more than competitive in coming years with, in particular, Stanton and Fernandez both moving towards peak years, but also as the Marlins improve.

However, with the league only allowing for three years before having to toss players back into the pool, I would opt for Miggy, Braun and Verlander as established pros in the throes of those peak years now.

So, as much as I--as I guess we all do--love having those wonderful up-and-coming prospects, Shaune would be looking at Myers, Bautista, Cabrera, Braun and Verlander as the core of his keepers. Were that an NFBC format, that is a pair of first rounders, with possibly four second rounders, and that is a core that should be seriously competitive in 2014, and 2015.

Furthermore, while it might be tough to pass on Fernandez and Stanton, they too would be back in the player pool in 2016 as established veterans, ideally as masters of their craft to the degree that Verlander and Cabrera are now.

At least that is how I would approach this deal.

Looking at a different Head-to-Head situation, I had to decide whether to keep Alex Gordon or Erick Aybar in my Scoresheet League this weekend. In most instances, that seems like a no-brainer since offensively, Gordon is a lot more productive.


But, in the Scoresheet format, where defense counts, and with the Head-to-Head spin which only allows for playing nine hitters (DH is used) each game, making sure the entire roster is fleshed out is critical.

Meaning the decision is not so much of a no-brainer as it seems.

In the end, I did keep Gordon because of his run production skills, but, believe me, I am targeting Aybar as my first selection next Saturday, when we draft in the 24-team format. I just hope he is still out there (I know Gordon would not be).

Note that if you have a question, feel free to tweet it to me @lawrmichaels

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