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.
|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|
|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.
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, 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|
|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.
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, 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|
|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|
|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.
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.