For most of us, our fantasy league trade deadline comes at least a week or two after the MLB trade deadline, which makes the time period in between the two target dates important. Completing a fantasy swap today, for instance, could backfire, as a real life trade could significantly impact the values of the players directly or indirectly involved, especially with respect to playing time for hitters or bullpen role for relief pitchers. So, it's probably a better idea to wait until after 4 PM ET tomorrow to finalize a swap in order to make the most educated decision possible. The annoying thing about this year, however, is that rosters in weekly leagues will lock shortly after 12:30 PM ET thanks to an early afternoon game. If you plan on starting your newly acquired players this week, you will be hoping that nothing major transpires within that three-plus hour window.
Rather than focusing on what may or may not happen between now and tomorrow's deadline, let's take a look at some of the fantasy relevant trades that went down this week.
Mets trade Lucas Duda to Rays - As an impending free agent, Duda was rumored to be on his way out of Queens for quite some time, and he seemed like a great fit for the Yankees. Instead, Duda heads to division-rival Tampa Bay. Staying healthy has always been the biggest issue for Duda, and he spent roughly three weeks on the DL earlier this year with an elbow injury. That said, the power is legit, and shifting to a DH role lowers the injury risk. Duda owners should be pleased.
Marlins trade A.J. Ramos to Mets - This was a surprising one as it followed the Duda deal, which signaled that the Amazins would be sellers. But a closer look at the situation reveals that Ramos is signed through 2018. In other words, he should serve as a key piece of the Mets bullpen next season in addition to taking over ninth inning duties this year for as long as Jeurys Familia remains sidelined. This is bad news for Addison Reed owners, but they can't complain too much being that Reed was merely a waiver wire pickup. Despite a high walk rate (5.0 BB/9), Ramos has been mostly effective this season, and there's little reason to expect anything different now that he will be donning the orange and blue.
Giants trade Eduardo Nunez to Red Sox - Although his ability to play multiple positions will keep Nunez in the lineup most of the time, he does figure to lose some at-bats now that he's in Beantown. On the other hand, he will be hitting in a superior lineup. The 30-year-old is unlikely to come anywhere close to matching last season's 16 homers, but between a strong batting average and a steady dose of swipes, Nunez has given his fantasy owners just about what they expected, aside from a stint on the DL due to a strained hamstring.
Padres trade Brandon Maurer to Royals - While the 20 saves were nice, owners of Maurer were forced to stomach a 5.72 ERA through his 42 appearances for the Padres this season. Now they will get the bloated ERA without the saves, which means that they will no longer be Maurer owners. And for the sake of their sanity, this is probably a good thing. Forget about the saves. Brad Hand has taken over closing duties for San Diego and should be considered a high-end stopper for as long as he's closing, which might not be for long, as Hand is likely to be dealt too.
Braves trade Jaime Garcia to Twins - Well, that was a pretty solid Twins debut for Garcia, who limited the A's to three runs over 6 2/3 innings while striking out seven. Still, Oakland isn't exactly an offensive juggernaut, and I do worry about Garcia, a career-long NL hurler, adapting to the more hitter-friendly AL.
But if the rumors prove to be true, my worries might be all for naught, as Garcia could be wearing a different uniform by the time you read this.
Only time will tell.