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Saturday 16th Dec 2017

LABRLOGO

We're back! Can you believe this is our 20th anniversary season? Well, we haven't covered the FAAB moves for all twenty years but it's been quite a few. This is the only place youi'll find every FAAB purchase from all the LABR and Tout Wars leagues

Each week, your friends at Mastersball will post the results of the weekly LABR FAAB run, featuring the winning bid as well a the runner-up bids. There are three LABR leagues, a 12-team AL only, 12-team NL only and 15-team Mixed Draft League. You can see the complete standings for each league by clicking on the appropriate heading, located just under each player photo.

Included with each league report will be commentary from a Mastersball staff member participating in that league. We invite you to ask questions and post comments at the bottom of the report.

All contingency bids for awarded players are included. Sometimes, this bid is tied to a player that the owner received, so at times the bid amount is larger than the winning bid. We are including it to provide as much information and context as possible with each report.

norris archer full

AMERICAN LEAGUE

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

Derek Norris, TB Winning Fantasy Baseball 33 Fangraphs 11 SiriusXM 11 NFBC/Stats, Inc. 9
    USA TODAY Sports 4 ESPN.com 2  
Jacob May, CWS Fangraphs 21 Mastersball 9 USA TODAY Sports 4 Yahoo! Sports 3
    Colton & The Wolfman 2    
Ariel Miranda, SEA Winning Fantasy Baseball 7 Yahoo! Sports 4 ESPN.com 3 Baseball HQ 1
    Baseball Prospectus 1    
Ronald Torreyes, NYY Baseball HQ 6 Colton & The Wolfman 2 Fangraphs 2  
Adalberto Mejia, MIN Fangraphs 6 Winning Fantasy Baseball 6 Yahoo! Sports 2 Baseball Prospectus 1
Peter Bourjos, TB Mastersball 4 Baseball HQ 3 USA TODAY Sports 1  
Yandy Diaz, CLE Yahoo! Sports 4 Fangraphs 16 Baseball HQ 5 Colton & The Wolfman 2
    USA TODAY Sports 1    
A.J. Griffin, TEX Mastersball 3 Baseball Prospectus 1    
Jordan Montgomery, NYY Yahoo! Sports 3      
Dan Altavilla, SEA ESPN.com 2 Baseball Prospectus 1    
Erasmo Ramirez, TB Yahoo! Sports 2 NFBC/Stats, Inc. 1    
Taylor Motter, SEA Yahoo! Sports 2 Baseball HQ 1    
Michael Martinez, CLE Baseball HQ 1 ESPN.com 1    
Tyler Clippard, NYY Baseball Prospectus 1 Yahoo! Sports 2 NFBC/Stats, Inc. 1  
Bryan Shaw, CLE Baseball Prospectus 1 Mastersball 1    
Joakim Soria, KC Baseball Prospectus 1 Fangraphs 1 Yahoo! Sports 1  
Darwin Barney, TOR Colton & The Wolfman 1 Baseball HQ 1 Yahoo! Sports 1  
Adam Rosales, OAK ESPN.com 1      
Liam Hendriks, OAK NFBC/Stats, Inc. 1 Fangraphs 1    
Jake Marisnick, HOU USA TODAY Sports 1      
Austin Jackson, CLE Colton & The Wolfman 1 Baseball HQ 3    
Frankie Montas, OAK Fangraphs 1      

UNAWARDED BIDS

Omar Narvaez, CWS Winning Fantasy Baseball 6    
Chris Gimenez, MIN Winning Fantasy Baseball 3    
Austin Romine, NYY Winning Fantasy Baseball 2    
Carlos Ruiz, SEA Winning Fantasy Baseball 2    
Derek Holland, CWS Mastersball 2    
Andrew Romine, DET Baseball HQ 2 Yahoo! Sports 1  
Gabriel Ynoa, BAL Fangraphs 2    
Abraham Almonte, CLE Yahoo! Sports 1 USA TODAY Sports 1 Baseball HQ 1
Adam Warren, NYY Yahoo! Sports 1 NFBC/Stats, Inc. 1 Baseball Prospectus 1
Craig Gentry, BAL Baseball HQ 1    
Daniel Robertson, TB Baseball HQ 1    
Pete Kozma, NYY ESPN.com 1    
Danny Farquhar, TB Fangraphs 1    
Evan Scribner, SEA Fangraphs 1    
Matt Belisle, MIN Fangraphs 1    
Mike Morin, LAA Fangraphs 1    
Nick Vincent, SEA Yahoo! Sports 1    

Lawr Michaels' Commentary

Because LABR drafts so early--at the beginning of Spring Training--all owners were champing at the bit to make moves and replace fallen or broken players as the the held its first FAAB period, ending Saturday night, at midnight, eve of the season opener. The next waiver period will end at the normal Sunday, midnight EST time slot.

Of the top of the 22 roster moves made, only seven went unchallenged, so let's look at all this activity and try to determine what it might mean.

The big ticker item was Derek Norris, who went to Larry Schechter for $33. Larry beat out five bids ranging from $2-$11, while new starting White Sox center fielder Jacob May went to Eno Sarris for $21. Simlarly, five bids went out on May, going from $3-$9, with both examples showing what a decisive bid will fetch.

A group of potential starting pitchers--Ariel Miranda ($7, also to Schechter), Adalberto Mejia ($6, to Sarris), AJ Griffin ($3 to me), and Liam Hendricks ($1 to Gerg Ambrosius and Shawn Childs)--were nabbed as well.

And, while a cluster of relievers were similarly nabbed, the late announcement of the injury to Roberto Osuna left both Jason Grilli and Joe Biagini in the free agent pool in deference to Joaquim Soria, Bryan Shaw, and Tyler Clippard (all three for a buck to a seemingly distraught Mike Gianella), while on the hitting side, Tyler Motter ($2 to Brandon Funston), Jake Marisnick ($1 to LABR guru Steve Gardner) while team Colton/Wolf/Stern wrangled Darwin Barney ($1) and Austin Jackson (also $1).

In essence, there was the usual speculation and scrambling teams would do a month after drafting, but before any season play.

It will be interesting to see how the battle for Grilli/Biagini goes next cycle.

Todd's Take

Something to keep in mind all season when looking at the AL and NL LABR bids is those league play with pseudo-old school rules. Acquired players can obviously replace injuries or demoted players but if you want to replace an active one, they must be released (not reserved). There are a few players that may have garnered more attention if some of the owners had more natural openings. It's understandable why some may be reticent to drop someone they purchased before a pitch was thrown. For what it's worth, Mixed LABR allows free movement between active and reserves.

Even with the restricted movement, I'm a little surprised more weren't in on Derek Norris. Even when Wilson Ramos returns, Norris should be better than a bunch of receivers in a two-catcher, 12-team only league.

In a speed-deprived junior circuit, Jacob May could be a stolen base savior, coincidentally replacing another speedster, Charlie Tilson. Tilson is out with a foot injury and doesn't have a timetable for his return. In the meantime, the White Sox can afford to give May a long look as the club isn't in contending mode.

A couple of starting pitchers caught my eye. Ariel Miranda gets the nod while Drew Smyly's soggy elbow dries out. Miranda is definitely worth a grab, pitching in Safeco Field backed by a solid defensive outfield and good offense. The other starter to check out is Adalberto Mejia of the Twins. He's not dominant but there's some projectability with his strikeout rate, especially if he exhibits the good control displayed in the minors.

stephen cardullo full

NATIONAL LEAGUE

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

Stephen Cardullo, COL Yakkertech 7 Colton & The Wolfman 1  
Koji Uehara, CHC Sandlot Shrink 7 Baseball HQ 2 ESPN - Karabell 1
Aaron Hill, SF Mastersball 3 Colton & The Wolfman 1 Derek Carty 1
Jose Martinez, STL Baseball HQ 3 USA TODAY Sports 1 Yakkertech 1
Manny Pina, MIL Mastersball 2 ESPN - Karabell 1  
Kirk Nieuwenhuis, MIL Yakkertech 2 Baseball HQ 1  
Jacob Barnes, MIL Baseball HQ 2    
Joely Rodriguez, PHI ESPN - Karabell 1    
Chris Marrero, SF Yakkertech 1 Colton & The Wolfman 1 Yakkertech 1
Jesus Aguilar, MIL Colton & The Wolfman 1 Derek Carty 1  
Conor Gillaspie, SF Derek Carty 1    
Andrew Knapp, PHI ESPN - Karabell 1    
Emilio Bonifacio, ATL USA TODAY Sports 1    

UNAWARDED BIDS

Jered Weaver, SD Sandlot Shrink 6  
Fernando Salas, NYM Sandlot Shrink 4  
Matt Cain, SF Sandlot Shrink 2  
Miguel Rojas, MIA Mastersball 1 Colton & The Wolfman 1
Greg Garcia, STL Mastersball 1 Derek Carty 1
Patrick Kivlehan, CIN Baseball HQ 1  
Jose Osuna, PIT Baseball HQ 1  
Jose Lobaton, WSH Mastersball 1  
Hector Sanchez, SD Yakkertech 1  
Dustin Garneau, COL Mastersball 1  
Daniel Nava, PHI Baseball HQ 1  
Christian Bethancourt, SD ESPN - Karabell 1  
Chris Heisey, WSH Baseball HQ 1  

Brian Walton's Commentary

With LABR having drafted four weeks ago, one would expect there was considerable pent up demand for free agent pick-ups. That seemed to be the case in the National League, as in total, 13 players were added by the 12 teams.

While the highest bids were $7 each for Cubs reliever Koji Uehara and Rockies first baseman Steven Cardullo, they drew just three offers and two, respectively. The largest number of NL LABR owners, four, wanted a spring training hero, Cardinals outfielder Jose Martinez, though his winning bid was just $3.

Of the trio, Uehara, as the top set up man for closer Wade Davis, could be the most forward-thinking pick-up, made by Bob Radomski of Sandlot Shrink. After all, Davis’ health is always a question in the background. Further, pretty much every other #2 reliever in the league is already owned.

Cardullo could find at-bats if another spring standout, Mark Reynolds, cannot carry his Cactus League success into the regular season. This opportunity has a shelf life, though, as Ian Desmond is expected back in six weeks. Steve Moyer of Yakkertech is Cardullo’s new owner.

Martinez is going to be hard-pressed to find at-bats behind the Cardinals’ starting outfielders, especially with Matt Adams’ new flirtation as a left fielder. Then again, Martinez, acquired by Doug Dennis of BaseballHQ, did hit .380 in Florida this spring.

Needing an infielder and catcher to plug holes, I wanted to ensure I would get my targets, so I spent a total of $5 on the Giants’ Aaron Hill and the Brewers’ Manny Pina. In both cases, I am chasing at-bats. Best case, the veteran Hill could earn a platoon at second with Joe Panik. Up in Milwaukee, the playing time split between spring fantasy darling Jett Bandy and Pina is unclear. The latter soundly out-hit the former in Arizona, for what that is worth.

Todd's Take

I'll talk about two names that Brian didn't cover. Jesus Aguilar's spring could push Eric Thames to the outfield on occasion, which isn't a huge deal since that's where he played in his first MLB stint. Aguilar has some pop, knocking 68 out of the yard in Triple-A the last three seasons, including 30 last year. However, keep in mind he played at Colorado Springs.

The other player I like is Jacob Barnes, someone I have on several deep squads. I don't trust Neftali Feliz to carry over his PNC Park success to Miller Park so while everyone else stashes Corey Knebel, I'll sneak in Barnes. His strikeout rate and ratios are sufficient to be useful even without saves.

blake treinen

MIXED LEAGUE

SUCCESSFUL BIDS

Blake Treinen, WSH Rotowire 53 Yahoo Sports 50 Baseball Prospectus 38 Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 22
    Razzball 21 Scout Fantasy 20 Fantasy Alarm 14
    RotoExperts/ FNTSY 14 MLB.com 12 Fangraphs 8
    USA TODAY Sports 2    
Delino DeShields, TEX Yahoo Sports 25 Rotowire 23 Yahoo Sports 22 RotoExperts/ FNTSY 14
    Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 11 USA TODAY Sports 10 Fangraphs 3
    Razzball 1    
Jarrett Parker, SF Mastersball 12      
Daniel Hudson, PIT Scout Fantasy 12 Baseball Prospectus 1    
Tyler Saladino, CWS Fantasy Alarm 11 Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 3 RotoExperts/ FNTSY 1  
Gerardo Parra, COL Rotowire 11 RotoExperts/ FNTSY 4 Fangraphs 3 Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 2
    Yahoo Sports 2 Razzball 1  
Shelby Miller, ARI Fangraphs 6 Razzball 3 Baseball Prospectus 2 Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 1
Koda Glover, WSH Fantasy Alarm 6 Scout Fantasy 5 RotoExperts/ FNTSY 3 Baseball HQ 1
Hyun-Jin Ryu, LAD MLB.com 4 RotoExperts/ FNTSY 3 Baseball Prospectus 2 Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 2
    Yahoo Sports 2    
Michael Lorenzen, CIN Baseball Prospectus 3 Baseball HQ 1 Baseball Prospectus 1 Rotowire 1
Charlie Morton, HOU Fangraphs 3 Scout Fantasy 11 Fantasy Alarm 4 Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 3
    Baseball Prospectus 2 Razzball 2 Baseball Prospectus 1
    RotoExperts/ FNTSY 1    
Danny Espinosa, LAA Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 2 Yahoo Sports 2 Mastersball 1  
Matt Boyd, DET Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 2 Scout Fantasy 7 Baseball HQ 1 Rotowire 1
Brandon McCarthy, LAD Razzball 2 Fantasy Alarm 4    
Brett Anderson, CHC USA TODAY Sports 2 Baseball HQ 1    
Koji Uehara, CHC Baseball Prospectus 1      
Aaron Altherr, PHI Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 1 Rotowire 2    
Ricky Nolasco, LAA Razzball 1      
Felipe Rivero, PIT Razzball 1      
Juan Nicasio, PIT RotoExperts/ FNTSY 1      
Grant Dayton, LAD RotoExperts/ FNTSY 1 Scout Fantasy 1    
Carl Edwards Jr., CHC RotoExperts/ FNTSY 1 Baseball Prospectus 1    
Jordy Mercer, PIT Mastersball 1      

UNAWARDED BIDS

David Freese, PIT Mastersball 11  
Derek Dietrich, MIA Fantasy Alarm 11  
Jed Lowrie, OAK Fantasy Alarm 11 Mastersball 1
Chase Utley, LAD Fantasy Alarm 6  
Matt Joyce, OAK Mastersball 6  
Tucker Barnhart, CIN Scout Fantasy 6  
Avisail Garcia, CWS Rotowire 5 Baseball HQ 1
Chris Iannetta, ARI Scout Fantasy 3  
David Phelps, MIA Scout Fantasy 3 Baseball Prospectus 1
Josh Tomlin, CLE Rotowire 3 Rotowire 1
Martin Perez, TEX Rotowire 3 Baseball Prospectus 1
Kendall Graveman, OAK Yahoo Sports 2 Rotowire 1
Ezequiel Carrera, TOR Baseball HQ 1 Rotowire 1
Robbie Grossman, MIN Mastersball 1 Rotowire 1
Adam Frazier, PIT Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 1  
Amir Garrett, CIN Rotowire 1  
Antonio Senzatela, COL Fantasy Alarm 1  
Brad Hand, SD Baseball Prospectus 1  
Brock Holt, BOS Mastersball 1  
Chris Young, BOS Mastersball 1  
Erick Aybar, SD Mastersball 1  
Jabari Blash, SD Fangraphs Sleeper & Bust 1  
Jesse Chavez, LAA Baseball Prospectus 1  
Jesus Aguilar, MIL RotoExperts/ FNTSY 1  
Jhonny Peralta, STL Mastersball 1  
Jhoulys Chacin, SD Razzball 1  
Manny Pina, MIL Scout Fantasy 1  
Miguel Montero, CHC Scout Fantasy 1  
Mike Fiers, HOU Baseball Prospectus 1  
Norichika Aoki, HOU Rotowire 1  

Todd Zola's Commentary

February 13, that's when we drafted Mixed LABR. If I were more in touch with pop culture I'd make some ridiculously funny analogy but I'm not so I won't. What I will do is take a look at the bevy of moves.

Full-time closers obviously draw the most attention with Blake Treinen being the prize. In typical Dusty Baker fashion, he refused to annoint the deserving youngster, Koda Glover. Treinen was preferred over Shawn Kelley for his durability and ground ball ways. Most assume Glover will eventually get the gig, though acquiring an established closer is also possible. Short term, Treinen is the guy and is worth the 53 percent of the FAAB budget bid submitted by Jeff Erickson of Rotowire. I suspect Jeff bought at least four months worth of saves on a very good team.

Delino DeShields bashed his way into the left field mix in Arlington. With steals being such a desired commodity, over half the league bid on DeShields. Scott Pianowski of Yahoo! was probably a little frustrated Jurickson Profar got the opening day start, but Scott's not panicking, DeShields will get his chance.

Several speculative saves plays garnered bids, including Daniel Hudson, Koda Glover, Michael Lorenzen, Koji Uehara, Felipe Rivero, Juan Nicasio, Grant Dayton and Carl Edwards, Jr. of the lot, Hudson and Lorenzen are most interesting. Tony Watson is more than capable of doing the job for Pittsburgh, but he's a non-dominant lefty that could be demoted or dealt, opening the door for Hudson. The mere fact Rivero and Nicasio also drew bids speaks to Watson's security. Lorenzen is the type that's useful even without getting saves as the Reds will likely have him toss 90 innings.

A bunch of darts were thrown at starting pitchers, including Shelby Miller, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Charlie Morton, Matt Boyd, Brandon McCarthy, Brett Anderson and Ricky Nolasco. The two that intrigue me the most are Morton and Boyd. Morton has displayed flashes in the past and was lighting up the gun this spring. Minute Maid Park is quietly good for pitchers while Morton should get nice run support. Boyd's metrics took a step up late last season and he continued the improved skills in the Grapefruit League.

Todd's Take

My bids focused on backing up J.D. Martinez and possibly Devon Travis. In retrospect, I wish I backed out my bid on Jordy Mercer, especially since I needed a second baseman and not shortstop, since my other middle infielders are Marcus Semien and Asdrubal Cabrera. Rules say I need to have Mercer active so I opted to put him at UT, leaving either Eddie Rosario or Seth Smith on the pine.

I guess I could have passed on Jarrett Parker and used Rosario or Smith in the outfield but something I learned in this league and others is if there's talent available, get it even if you don't need it, because at some point you will need it and the available replacements at that time are likely to be of lesser quality. AT&T Park may squash power, but Parker has some pop and is fantasy-worthy in 15-team mixed.

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