Fantasy Baseball: Go Get Mike Gonzalez Now!: Fantasy Buy/Sell

Evan KulhawikContributor IJune 18, 2008

Note: When I say buy, I mean that the player's value is at its lowest point and it is a good time to try and get them for little value.

Some players may be obvious names that people want on their team, but the point is to maximize trade value. A few buy/sells for fantasy baseball (I'll give you a batter, starter, and reliever for each)


Buy: Chase Headley (SD, 3B)

Headley is a top prospect, yet his call-up has been far less publicized than the likes of Jay Bruce and Clayton Kershaw. Still, many of you have probably heard of the Padres' newest member. If your team is low on hitting, go and pick up Headley right now.

Headley was hitting .305 in the minors this year, with 13 HR and 40 RBI in 65 games. The power is legit and he can have respectable power numbers in the majors. He does not have speed, however, and did not even attempt a SB in the minors this year. Despite this, he can be a good source of power with a decent average around .275.

In shallow mixed leagues, it is not a necessity to own him, but in deeper mixed leagues and NL-only leagues Headley needs to be owned.

Buy: Aaron Harang (CIN, SP)

Harang is the Reds ace, yet he is off to a 3-9 start this season. His ERA is a decent 4.10, and his WHIP stands at 1.28. However, Harang's pedigree suggests a turnaround in his numbers.

Last year he posted a 3.73 ERA, and a 3.76 ERA the year before that. Harang has never been a shutdown guy, as his ERA in the past two years suggests, but he usually is very good.

Despite his bad numbers at the surface this year, Harang has 89 K and 20 BB in 101 innings. This is still a very good ratio, and a very good amount of K/9. This suggests that Harang's numbers should improve. His BAA so far is .276, which is rather high for a pitcher of his caliber.

It is tough to expect Harang to start completely shutting down opponents, but he should improve. His past numbers suggest a baseline of what his numbers should creep towards. With a very good lineup behind him, his record should also greatly improve. Look for Harang to slowly build up another impressive season, and he should be searched out in all formats.

Buy: Mike Gonzalez (ATL, RP)

Hopefully you heeded my advice and have already snatched up Gonzalez if you are looking for saves. This is an obvious pick-up for the fact that Gonzalez is going to get a try as the Braves closer.

His numbers the past three years have been rather impressive. He has posted a 2.70 ERA (2005), 2.17 ERA (2006), and 1.59 ERA (2007, in only 17 innings). He has had trouble with his control, though, as in 2005 and 2006, in 50 and 54 innings respectively, he walked 31 batters in both years.

However, the bottom line is he is going to get a shot at taking over the closer's role, and saves are saves in fantasy. His ERA in the past has been very good, as well as his K/9, so he is worth a shot. He may not set the world on fire, but maybe he can take the closer's role by the horns and run with it.

Sell: Dan Uggla (FLA, 2B)

Uggla is absolutely on fire so far, and he is ranked 6th overall in the Yahoo game. With a .288 AVG, 20 HR and 50 RBI, Uggla is smoking the ball. However, there seems to be no way Uggla can keep up with this pace.

He hit 27 HR in 2006 and 31 HR in 2005, so it is definitely conceivable that he will continue this trend and smash both these numbers. However, it is tough seeing him hitting more than 35 HR, which means his power should slow down a little bit.

I still think Uggla will continue to provide good numbers, but at this point in time his value will be no higher. He can net a marquee player at this point, and it would be wise to shop him. His slugging pct. has been .480 and .479 the past two years, so his current absurd .619 SLG should come way down.

Uggla will continue to put up good numbers, but there is just no way he continues to rake as his current pace. Find a proven big-time player and trade Uggla before he returns to planet Earth.

Sell: Ryan Dempster (CHC, SP)

Dempster has been lights out thus far, going 8-2 with a 2.76 ERA and 1.09 WHIP. He also has 81 K and 37 BB in 94.2 innings. Even though Dempster looks to have his best year this year, it is doubtful he can continue going as he is. The past two years he had ERA's of 4.80 and 4.72. Granted, these were as a reliever, but it is tough imagining he could do so poorly only facing a couple batters, and suddenly be so good having to go through lineups multiple times.

His K/9 have been good the past two years, like it is this year, but his control is much better this year than in years past. This trend may generally continue, but the big difference this year is he has given up a mere 66 hits in 94.2 innings. That is a ridiculous H/9 ratio, especially for a guy with an unimpressive track record like Dempster. Expect Dempster to give up more hits as this season progresses, as his BAA so far is a minuscule .192. Dempster can continue to pitch fairly well, but there is no way he continues to pitch like an ace for the rest of the year.

Sell: Troy Percival (TB, RP)

This sell is based solely on health. So far this year in 24.1 innings, he has a 2.59 ERA and 0.70 WHIP, with 25 K and only 5 BB. Last year he also had great numbers; in 40 innings, he had a 1.80 ERA and 0.85 WHIP, with 36 K and 10 BB, so his numbers this year are not an aberration.

However, he just came back from a DL stint, and another one is very likely. AT 38 years old, Percival is becoming fragile. Percival will continue to put up good numbers as long as he is pitching, but deal Percival for a proven closer who stays healthy. Another trip to the DL seems destined for the ancient fireballer.