Trading in fantasy sports can be simplified to a four-word common denominator: Sell high, buy low.
The key is knowing which players will bounce back from a slow start and which ones will crash and burn after lighting the fantasy world on fire early on.
It should be noted that at the moment, not even a full week into the MLB's regular season, you won't find too many owners panicking enough about Mark Teixeira's slow start or overzealous about Vernon Wells' astronomical stats thus far.
However, it is still good to get into the rhythm of what will be a regular feature as the season matures, so here are my current very, very early sell high, buy low candidates:
Alex Rodriguez. If you find anyone panicking enough to move A-Rod after his .133 batting average and measly one run scored and one RBI through 15 at-bats, then go ahead and take the guy to the cleaner. However, in more realistic scenarios, you still won't be able to touch A-Rod with even the most well-constructed trade.
If he continues to struggle through April and into May—well—you still probably won't be able to touch him. But you get the point. I hope.
Aaron Hill. A favorite target in drafts by www.chinstrapninjas.com writers, Hill has stumbled out of the gate this season to a tune of 1-for-8 at the plate. He'll still hit more than ample home runs for a second baseman, and while the guy who drafted him likely won't be quick to ditch him just yet, he's another buy low candidate to watch closely.
Hunter Pence. Another guy I was targeting in drafts this spring , Pence has yet to notch a single hit in 12 at-bats. He'll be fine. It's a marathon, not a sprint.
Justin Verlander. Five innings pitched, and a 7.20 ERA to show for it. Not exactly what you'd expect from the guy I boldly predicted would win the AL Cy Young . However, it was just one start. He will still be dominant this season, and he's still my Cy Young pick for the AL.
Jose Valverde. He blew a save against the lowly Royals on Wednesday, but Valverde still closes on a team that is ripe for saves, and you can rest assured he will produce accordingly. He’ll still save more games than Mariano Rivera in 2010 .
Vernon Wells. Quick…name the top fantasy producing offensive player in baseball.
Yes, it’s Wells.
The guy who was expected to take the league by storm back in 1999 when he first entered the big leagues. Call me a pessimist, but somehow I doubt that in year 11, he’s somehow found a massive power swing…unless he’s juicing. He could have a decent year , but he’s not going to break the single-season home run record.
Garrett Jones. I love what he could do for a season, but remember that he spent numerous seasons in the minors before finally getting the call for a Pirates team that is typically devoid of great talent. He's a guy I'd love to have on my roster, but at the moment with his massive fireworks display, he's also demanding a much higher price tag than I'd be willing to pay in most league formats. If you can deal him in a redraft league for elite talent based on potential and his current offensive tear, go for it. Don't move him in dynasty leagues. A little debate on Jones' projections for 2010 can be found here .
Mark Buehrle. Currently ranked by Yahoo! as the third best fantasy pitcher in baseball. This comes off a seven-inning one-hitter against the Cleveland Indians. Yes, those Indians. Buehrle can produce quietly consistent numbers during the season, but not to this level week in and week out.
See even more sell-high, buy-low candidates for Week 1 by checking out our full list .
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