Teams: San Francisco and Chicago Cubs

Player(s) to San Francisco: Kris Bryant, 3B/OF

Player(s) to Chicago Cubs: Alexander Canario, OF and Caleb Killian, RHP

Waiting until the last moment did not really pay off for the Cubs, dealing Kris Bryant to the Giants for two prospects and finishing off its clearing of the roster. Bryant heads to the bay with a .267/.358/.503 slash line over 374 plate appearances this year. He scored 51 runs with 18 home runs, 51 RBI and four stolen bases in 93 games. After a torrid start, he leveled off but represents the type of versatile player San Francisco craves and fits their needs well. 

When viewing his Statcast data, Bryant bounced back this year producing 238 batted ball events with 24 barrels (10.1 percent) and 91 hard hits (38.2 percent). Perhaps his expected numbers may portend his results with his new team: .263 expected batting average, .445 expected slugging and .352 expected weighted on-base average. For the fantasy ramifications, here's his all of his line drives and fly balls this year on an overlay with his new home ballpark: 

It's almost in line with his in-season results, so it's about where he hits in the lineup and how he's used down the stretch. Here's his rest-of-the-season projections courtesy of Statcast: 

Look for him to stay the course, there's no major swings in his value with this move, though he will bat in a much deeper lineup now than the one he left. 

As for the Cubs return: 

Teams: Atlanta, Kansas City and Pittsburgh

Player(s) to Atlanta: Jorge Soler, OF and Richard Rodríguez, RHP

Player(s) to Kansas City: Kasey Kalich, RHP

Player(s) to Pittsburgh: Bryse Wilson, RHP and Ricky DeVito, RHP

Once again, thanks to the Atlanta press release team for the terrific tweets with all the tangible information on each acquisition. First, outfielder Jorge Soler, who launched six home runs his last nine games: 

And they added veteran closer Richard Rodríguez to their bullpen as a bridge arm to their closer, Will Smith

Biggest news of these two trades, David Bednar now gets a clear path to saves for the Pirates and Nick Pratto may replace Soler on the Royals roster. Pay attention to both this weekend in waiver runs. 

Teams: Oakland and Washington

Player(s) to Oakland: Josh Harrison, 2B/3B and Yan Gomes, C

Player(s) to Washington: Drew Millas, C; Seth Shuman, RHP and Richard Guasch, RHP

Although this trade may not move the fantasy needle, it deepens the A's roster for a run at the playoffs. Harrison can move all around the infield and provides insurance for Matt Chapman. Gomes handled a pitching staff to a championship and will improve the team's depth behind the plate with some power as well. It's little moves like this which can propel a team forward. 

This year, Harrison’s slashing .294/.366/.434 with 39 runs, six home runs, 38 RBI and five steals in 90 games over 359 plate appearances. Gomes owns a .271/.323/.454 line with nine home runs and 35 RBI in only 235 plate appearances in 63 contests. 

Teams: New York Mets and Chicago Cubs

Player(s) to New York: Javier Báez, 2B/SS and Trevor Williams, RHP

Player(s) to Chicago: Pete Crow-Armstrong, OF

Keeping the trade fires burning, and myself at the wheel all day, the Cubs sent Javier Báez to New York, along with starting pitcher Trevor Williams for prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong

Baez can fill in for Francisco Lindor at shortstop until he returns and shifts over to second base after, making a tremendous middle infield in terms of defense. But, fantasy players wish to know about what to expect from his bat the rest of the way. So far this year, Baez owns a .248/.292/.484 slash with 48 runs, 22 home runs, 65 RBI and 13 stolen bases in 91 games accruing 361 plate appearances. He's also recorded career highs in strikeout rate (36.3 percent) and swinging strike percentage (21.8 percent) selling out a bit for power.

This can be seen in his Statcast numbers where he produced 218 batted ball events this year with 27 barrels (13 percent) and a 46.6 hard hit percentage, both career highs. But, he's also generating less contact (62 percent) and quality of contact when he does, evidenced in his .222 expected batting average, .430 expected slugging and .304 expected weighted on-base percentage. 

With all of this in mind, here's his spray chart from this year of all his fly balls and line drives with his new home in New York as the overlay: 

Viewing his rest-of-the-season projections from Fangraphs, it looks like more of the same heading into free agency: 

It's a win now move by the Mets and helps the pitching staff more than the team batting average. There will be ups and downs for Baez over the last two months, but he's exciting to watch. 

Trevor Williams represents an innings eater for a team needing capable starts every fifth day. With some doubleheaders on the horizon and awaiting some pitchers to return to the rotation, he makes perfect sense as a throw-in. Williams is 4-2 this year with 61 strikeouts against 22 walks in 58.2 innings with a 5.06 ERA and 1.53 WHIP but a 4.18 SIERA could yield some positive migration to the mean in his future outings. 

For the Cubs, they receive last year's number 19 pick in the MLB draft in Pete Crow-Armstrong. He's just cutting his teeth at Single-A with a .417/.563/.500 slash in 32 plate appearances. Getting another upside outfielder for expiring contracts rates as a win for Chicago. 

Teams: Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs

Player(s) to White Sox: Craig Kimbrel, RHP

Player(s) to Cubs: Codi Heuer, RHP and Nick Madrigal, 2B

Once again, with eyes on a rebuild, the Cubs get a hard throwing reliever and future second baseman for their closer, Craig Kimbrel. The White Sox craved a lockdown reliever to pair with Liam Hendirks and these two could be lights out at the end of games: 

Without being privy to the late inning plans by Tony La Russa, this could depress both relievers in terms of saves, a precious commodity this season. Kimbrel's converted 23 this year for the Cubs with a minuscule 0.49 ERA and 0.71 WHIP with 64 strikeouts against 13 walks over 36.2 innings. He's recorded an 18.7 swinging strike percentage and permitted a 59 percent contact rate in a dominant 2021 season. 

As for the Cubs, they received Codi Heuer who owns a 4-1 record with 13 holds and a 39:10 K:BB in 38.2 innings this year. His 5.12 ERA accompanies a 69.4 strand rate, below league average with a 3.56 SIERA, so he could be in store for some movement to the mean. Focus on his 14.6 swinging strike percentage and hope he can fill in some high leverage innings for the Cubs down the stretch. 

Nick Madrigal enters next season as the starting second baseman if his rehab remains on track. His season ended after 54 games with him slashing .305/.349/.425 with 30 runs, two home runs, 21 RBI and a stolen base in 215 plate appearances. Known for his tremendous ability to make contact, he will fit well in the lineup going forward. 

Teams: Philadelphia and Texas

Player(s) to Philadelphia: Kyle Gibson, RHP and Ian Kennedy, RHP

Player(s) to Texas: Spencer Howard, RHP; Kevin Gowdy, RHP and Josh Gessner, RHP

Selling high and buying low, the Rangers traded two veterans for the potential upside of Spencer Howard. Philadelphia tries to remain in the race for the National League East adding a much needed arm to its rotation and a closer. It remains to be seen how the Phillies use Ian Kennedy, but he's secured 16 saves this year with a 35:7 K:BB, 2.51 ERA and 1.05 WHIP over 32.1 innings of work. His veteran presence could allow the team to shift Ranger Suárez back into a fluid multi-inning high leverage role he served well before being forced into the ninth inning due to a lack of late inning options. 

Kyle Gibson arrives in Philadelphia with a 6-3 record, 2.57 ERA and 1.18 WHIP with 94 strikeouts against 41 walks in 113 innings over 19 starts this season. He's accomplished this with some guts and guile while tweaking his pitch mix. However, he started to show signs of regression in the second half and his 4.46 SIERA warns more rough times may be ahead. Tread lightly here and manage his starts by match-ups if possible.

Texas will try to rekindle another dormant pitcher in Howard. Working without a defined role this year, he lost both of his decisions over 28.1 innings in 11 appearances making seven starts. At one time he represented the future of the Phillies rotation, so while there's work to be done, it's happened before with a fresh start. They also received prospects Kevin Gowdy and Josh Gessner in this trade.

Teams: Toronto and Minnesota

Player(s) to Toronto: José Berríos, RHP

Player(s) to Minnesota: Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP and Austin Martin, SS/CF


Following suit in the American League East, the Blue Jays will also be going for the playoffs adding 27-year old starting pitcher José Berríos from the Twins for two of its top four prospects. Since Berrios cannot be a free agent until after the 2022 season, the price went up for the reliable starter. He's 7-5 this year with a 3.48 ERA, 3.74 SIERA and 1.04 WHIP through 20 starts. He's logged 121.2 innings with a 126:32 K:BB, 25.7 strikeout percentage, 6.5 walk rate and 10.2 swinging strike percent. 

Thankfully, Toronto returns to the Rogers Centre tonight and no longer plays in the bandbox in Buffalo, helping Berrios and his teammates the rest of the season. Another key here, the Blue Jays have four more games on their schedule, so depending on when he joins the staff, he could garner an extra start this season. 

Two things remain in play with Berrios, can he generate enough swinging strikes to survive his new division and how will the coaching staff unlock any potential within his arsenal after turning around Robbie Ray? Over the last two months, Berrios has used more sinkers but still throws his curve more than any pitch. Any tweaks and outcomes will be fun to monitor once he debuts with Toronto. Here's his rest-of-the-season projections from Fangraphs: 

Minnesota continues getting building blocks for a rebuild on the fly: 

Starting with Simeon Wood Richardson, he's made 11 starts at Double-A despite only being 20 years old. He's 2-4 with 67 strikeouts against 26 walks in 45.1 innings. His ERA of 5.76 could be better along with his 1.50 WHIP. Many felt a velocity bump could happen during his development in the minors, so keep tabs on this. Also, he's teammates with newly acquired Joe Ryan on the United States Olympic team. 

Austin Martin, one year removed from being the fifth pick overall in the draft, arrives in Minnesota with a .281/.424/.383 slash at Double-A with 43 runs, two home runs, 16 RBI and nine stolen bases in 250 plate appearances. He's an on-base machine and can play multiple positions. Now it's up to the Twins to decide where he fits best. If he develops some power, look out. 


Teams: Atlanta, Miami and Cleveland

Player(s) to Atlanta: Adam Duvall, OF and Eddie Rosario, OF

Player(s) to Miami: Alex Jackson, C

Player(s) to Cleveland: Pablo Sandoval, 3B

In an effort to save time, Atlanta made two separate trades acquiring two outfielders for the stretch run. First: 

And they also added Eddie Rosario from Cleveland, though he will miss two more weeks due to an abdominal injury, but he represents an upgrade in the outfield: 

As for the rest-of-the-season projections, here's how they stack up starting with Duvall: 

And Rosario, if he returns in the time frame suggested by the beat writers:

Both of these additions will not make huge waves in the way of headlines, but each could be helpful for fantasy and Atlanta's push for the division. 


Teams: Los Angeles Dodgers and Washington

Player(s) to Los Angeles: Max Scherzer, RHP and Trea Turner, SS

Player(s) to Washington: Keibert Ruiz, C; Josiah Gray, RHP; Gerardo Carrillo, RHP and Donovan Casey, OF


A blockbuster trade with Washington firmly waving the white flag ahead of the trade deadline. Trading pending free agent Max Scherzer and Trea Turner (free agent after 2022) signals an attempt to restock their barren farm system in a trade with the Dodgers acquiring four prospects. 

Starting with Max Scherzer, he made the most of his last start with Washington on Thursday notching his eighth win giving up three hits, an earned run and three walks with six strikeouts lowering his ERA to 2.76 in the process. He heads to Los Angeles with a 147:28 K:BB over 111 innings this year spanning 19 starts with a 0.89 WHIP and 3.01 SIERA. He's one of the best starters in the MLB and immediately enhances the Dodgers postseason chances. And as irony would have it, he's projected to make his debut against the Astros. One cannot make this stuff up. 

Here's Scherzer's rest-of-the-season projections from Fangraphs: 

He's a stud and could even win six-plus games with this move to a much better team. 

Trea Turner gets traded, perhaps in the midst of a career season. He's hitting .322/.369/.521 with 66 runs, 18 home runs, 49 RBI and 21 stolen bases over 430 plate appearances in 96 games. He's produced 313 batted ball events with 23 barrels (7.3 percent) and 144 hard hits (46 percent) with a .294 expected batting average, .472 expected slugging and .356 expected weighted on-base average. 

One should not worry too much about pending regression viewing his expected numbers versus his current results when viewing his fly balls and line drives hit this season with his new stadium at Chavez Ravine as the overlay:

It remains to be seen where Turner hits with the Dodgers, but he could slot into second behind Mookie Betts making an incredible one-two punch atop their lineup. Here's Turner's rest-of-the-season projections:

Taking the over on eight home runs but his stolen base total may not exceed the 11 above by THE BAT X, still, anyone with him on their roster may benefit from the boost in counting statistics (runs and RBI). 

As for the Nationals return in this trade, this tweet provides a primer: 

Keibert Ruiz represents their catcher of the future. He arrives with a .311/.381/.631 slash at Triple-A with 16 home runs and 45 RBI over 231 plate appearances. Knowing there's a chasm between this level and the majors this season, he may need time to acclimate if promoted. But, one takes solace in his 10 walk percentage versus a 11.7 strikeout rate in this sample. 

Needing an arm to take over the vacated spot in the rotation, Josiah Gray may fit the bill. He made two appearances with the Dodgers, one start, logging eight innings with a 13:5 K:BB, 6.75 ERA and 1.50 WHIP but an intriguing 3.48 SIERA. Focus on his 22:2 K:BB at Triple-A in 15.2 innings and stash him for spot starts going forward. 

Gerardo Carrillo owns a 3-2 record at Double-A with a 4.25 ERA, 1.31 WHIP and 70:29 K:BB during 15 games (14 starts) in 59.1 innings. He may ascend to Triple-A for the Nationals upon activation. Donovan Casey, a 25-year old outfielder, played 73 games at Double-A accruing 334 plate appearances with 51 runs, 11 home runs, 36 RBI, 15 stolen bases and a .296/.362/.462 slash line. Not too bad until seeing his 30.5 strikeout rate and being a bit old for this level. 


Teams: Boston and Washington

Player(s) to Boston: Kyle Schwarber, OF

Player(s) to Washington: Aldo Ramirez, RHP


Keeping the for sale sign firmly planted in the yard, Washington agreed to send Kyle Schwarber to the Red Sox for a minor league pitcher. Presently on the injured list, Schwarber brings 25 home runs and his powerful bat to Boston. Through 72 games this year, he owns a .253/.340/.570 slash with 53 RBI and even stole a base. He will draw some walks (10.3 percentage) and strike out in bunches (29 strikeout rate) but his power potential cannot be overshadowed. 

He's generated 179 batted ball events this year with 33 barrels (18.4 percent) and 93 hard hits (52 percent) with both representing career bests. His expected numbers suggest some bad luck with a .265 expected average, .571 expected slugging and .394 expected weighted one-base average. Check out his spray chart from this year with Fenway Park as the overlay: 

More home runs could be in the offing for Schwarber once he returns from his injury. HIs rest-of-the-season projections hinge upon how many plate appearances he garners, but here's how they looked prior to this trade:

Here's hoping he returns sooner rather than later and those in American League only formats needing power should splurge if they have free agency money left. 

Washington receives an interesting pitcher from the Red Sox:

Stay tuned but another upside arm added by a franchise in dire need of them.


Teams: New York Yankees and Chicago Cubs

Player(s) to New York: Anthony Rizzo, 1B

Player(s) to Chicago: Kevin Alcantara, OF and Alexander Vizcaino, RHP


Keeping with the modus operandi displayed in the preseason, the Cubs traded a popular veteran for high upside lottery tickets. Anthony Rizzo heads to New York for a 19-year toolsy outfield prospect and an 18-year old right-handed pitcher. Starting with Rizzo, he assumes first base and provides another impact left-handed bat in a lineup craving one. He also offers another batter with strong on-base tendencies. 

So far this year, Rizzo's slashing .248/.346/.446 with 41 runs, 14 home runs, 40 RBI and four stolen bases in 376 plate appearances over 92 contests. Although his walk rate sits below double digits for the first time in his career, his on-base rate of almost 35 percent insulates his plate discipline. 

He's also been a bit unlucky this season when viewing his batted ball data on Statcast. He's produced 267 batted ball events with 25 barrels (9.4 percent) and 115 hard hits for a career best 43.1 hard hit percentage. There's room for some bounce back in his batting average if his numbers migrate towards his .263 expected average and 10 points to be gained in how expected weighted on-base average (xwOBA). 

Biggest boost, Yankee Stadium. If the power gains arrive with Rizzo to New York, his home run tally this season may exceed his projections. During the last statistical year, he's only hit 22 home runs in 146 games, but check out his fly ball and line drive results in a spray chart with his new home ballpark as the overlay: 

Because of this, and more traffic on the bases ahead of him, it's likely Rizzo out distances his rest-of-the-season projections on Fangraphs:

For Chicago, they received talented outfielder Kevin Alcantara, he's 6'6” and very projectible. They also got pitcher Alexander Vizcaino, who just reached High-A prior to this trade. It may be a few years before one can rate this trade, but in the present, it's apparent the Yankees are all in.


Teams: Toronto and Washington

Player(s) to Toronto: Brad Hand, LHP

Player(s) to Washington: Riley Adams, C


Addressing a clear need in the bullpen, Toronto added veteran closer, Brad Hand. He's been struggling of late but owns a 5-5 record this year with 21 saves over 42.2 innings with a 42:18 K:BB, 3.59 ERA, 4.14 SIERA and 1.15 WHIP. Perhaps the team can work the same magic they did turning around Robbie Ray upon arrival. 

Hand needs to overcome his career-low 7.3 swinging strike percentage as a reliever in order to overcome his fly ball tendencies. Look for Hand to work in tandem with Jordan Romano in high leverage events with the Blue Jays, but he should not be viewed as the "closer” with his new team, rather an option for saves based on match-ups. 

Washington receives help at catcher acquiring Riley Adams. He hit .239/.371/.487 at Triple-A with 20 runs, seven home runs, and 17 RBI in 35 games spanning 31 plate appearances. Stuck in a logjam at a loaded position with Toronto, he could see much more playing time with the Nationals in the years to come if his power develops. 


Teams: Chicago White Sox and Cleveland

Player(s) to Chicago: Cesar Hernandez, 2B

Player(s) to Cleveland: Konnor Pilkington, LHP


Another in-division trade with veteran second baseman Cesar Hernandez headed to the White Sox while Cleveland received southpaw Konnor Pilkington from Double-A in return. With a revolving door at second base this season, getting Hernandez shores up the position. But, this iteration of the veteran does not resemble the past one. He's hit a career-high 18 home runs in 2021 with a .231/.307/.431 slash line scoring 60 runs while driving in 47 in 420 plate appearances. He's not stolen base or attempted one in the past two seasons. 

His on-base percentage dip also causes some concern since he's sold out a bit for power with an increased swinging strike percentage and generated less contact. Viewing his Statcast data, he's produced 288 batted ball events with 27 barrels (9.4 percent) and 104 hard hits (36.1 percent) with an expected batting average of .250, an expected slugging of .420 and a .328 expected weighted on-base average. 

Where he hits in this lineup, and his usage determines his fantasy value going forward. If he vacates a spot near the top of the lineup, his runs will decrease harpooning part of his allure. Here are his rest of the season projections courtesy of Fangraphs: 

Pay close attention to where he bats and act accordingly. 

Cleveland, long known to covet upside arms, adds left-handed Connor Pilkington. He owned a 4-4 record at Double-A with a 3.48 ERA, 0.92 WHIP and 71:21 K:BB over 14 starts in 62 innings. Also of interest, if they promote Andrés Giménez to take over at second base, he may reward fantasy players searching for stolen base upside over the last two months. Stay tuned. There's also a chance the team promoted Owen Miller for an extended look at second base as well: 

  • Gimenez at Triple-A: 45 games, 202 plate appearances, 23 runs, nine home runs, 27 RBI, six stolen bases; .274/.335/.492
  • Miller at Triple-A: 48 games, 206 plate appearances, 25 runs, seven home runs, 22 RBI; .297/.374/.489


Teams: New York Yankees and Texas

Player(s) to New York: Joey Gallo, OF and Joely Rodríguez, LHP

Player(s) to Texas: Ezequiel Duran, 2B; Josh Smith, SS; Glenn Otto, RHP and Trevor Hauver 2B/OF


Headlining this deal, it's Joey Gallo taking his immense power to the hitter friendly Yankee Stadium made for his swing. It does not hurt he's a gold glove outfielder with on-base upside and hits left-handed, a dire need for New York. So, he checks all the boxes except for his batting average. But, life's not perfect. 

Through 95 games this season Gallo's scored 57 runs with 25 home runs, 55 RBI, six stolen bases and a .223/.379/.490 slash line. His 19.1 walk percentage accompanies a 32.2 strikeout rate with a .268 isolated power and .374 weighted on-base average. He represents a “three outcome” hitter (home run, walk or strikeout) this season with 58 percent of his plate appearances resulting in one of these three categories: 25 home runs, 74 walks and 125 strikeouts equalling 224 of his 388 plate appearances. 

Transitioning to Statcast, he's produced 185 batted ball events this season with 34 barrels (18.4 percent) and 80 hard hit events (43.2 percent). His expected numbers sit almost in direct correlation with his in-season results sporting a .221 expected batting average, a .490 expected slugging and .375 expected weighted on-base average. However, when looking at his home run total since 2019 of 47, if these games happened in New York, the total jumps to 63. Again, playing half of his remaining games in the Bronx may improve his average and home run total simply by the shift in hitting environment. 

Over the last statistical year, Gallo's logged 149 games with 79 runs, 34 home runs, 79 RBI and eight stolen bases with a .205/.349/.445 slash in 601 plate appearances. He struggled during his first season in Globe Life Park and it affected his totals in 2020. Still, here's all of his line drives and fly balls from this sample with Yankee Stadium as the overlay: 

Although he's perceived as a pull hitter, Gallo can drive the ball out to any field and could benefit from fly balls to the opposite field jumping over the wall as well. With this in mind, here's his rest-of-the-season projections from Fangraphs, but increase the home run total by at least 10 percent due to his move to New York:

New York also gets left-handed reliever Joely Rodríguez in the deal. He owns a 1-3 record this year with one save, nine holds and one blown save over 27.1 innings with 30 strikeouts against 12 walks. His 5.93 ERA and 1.61 WHIP need to improve to see time in high leverage events but hope lies in his 3.41 SIERA and 3.93 expected ERA. He also generates ground balls at a 64.3 percent rate this season which could help him during his time with the Yankees. If he can reduce traffic on the bases and pitch ahead in counts, perhaps his 13.4 swinging strike rate can fuel some migration to the mean in his ratio statistics. 

Although this trade package changed since its original report, the Rangers will receive four prospects from New York headlined by Ezequiel Duran. At High-A he slashed .290/.374/.533 with 12 home runs and 12 stolen bases. He projects to be a very good major league player with a chance at All-Star status during it. Shortstop Josh Smith also joins Texas splitting time between Single-A and High-A this year with nine home runs and 17 steals combined between the two levels. 

Right-handed pitcher Glenn Otto, newly promoted to Triple-A, will be the closest to major league ready for the Rangers. He's a combined 7-3 between Double-A and his limited time in Triple-A with 115 strikeouts over 75.2 innings giving up only 17 walks in them. Trevor Hauver played outfield in college but the Yankees tried converting him to second base at Single-A this year. He hit nine home runs with two stolen bases, 48 runs and 49 RBI with a .288/.445/.498 slash prior to the trade. 

Many feel this trade rates as a quantity over quality return of prospects to Texas, a team in need of prospect capital in their minor league system. Time will tell, but for now, this feels like a trade which benefits both teams. 


Teams: Milwaukee and Arizona

Player(s) to Milwaukee: Eduardo Escobar, 2B/3B

Player(s) to Arizona: Cooper Hummel, C/OF and Alberto Ciprian, 3B


In dire need of an upgrade to their lineup, the Brewers landed versatile Eduardo Escobar who can play all around the infield and maybe even some first base in a pinch. So far this year he's hitting .246/.300/.478 with 50 runs, 22 home runs, 65 RBI and two stolen bases in 400 plate appearances. He owns a 7.2 walk percentage with a 21.3 strikeout rate and .331 weighted on-base average (wOBA). 

According to Statcast, he's produced 286 batted ball events with 28 barrels (9.8 percent) and 100 hard hits (35 percent). His expected numbers almost align exactly with his in-season results: .244 expected batting average, .457 expected slugging and .321 xwOBA. 

Although he's a switch hitter, it's likely he benefits from home games in Milwaukee, a park which heavily favors left-handed hitters. Over the last statistical year, including his abysmal 2020 season, he owns a .237/.293/.435 slash with 26 home runs in 610 plate appearances. Here's all of his fly balls and line drives in this time frame with his new ballpark as the overlay: 

Keep this in mind when viewing his rest-of-the-season projections from Fangraphs: 

Will take the over on home runs and RBI thanks to his new surroundings. Escobar will not need to acclimate to a new league, another advantage of this trade, so look for him to move into the lineup upon arrival with a possible uptick in his batting average and power in his new environment. 

Trading an expiring contract for two prospects helps the Diamondbacks. They acquired Cooper Hummel, a 26-year old player who can catch and play the outfield. He's a bit old for Triple-A but recorded a .254/.435/.508 slash in 168 plate appearances this year with six home runs and a higher walk percentage (24.4 percent) than strikeout rate (15.5 percent). 

They also added 18-year old third baseman Alberto Ciprian, currently playing in the Dominican Summer League. 

Teams: Oakland and Miami

Player(s) to Oakland: Starling Marte, OF

Player(s) to Miami: Jesús Luzardo, LHP


Paying the salary of Starling Marte enhanced the return for Miami getting once prized pitching prospect Jesús Luzardo from the A's. This represents an upgrade to Oakland's outfield with Marte either lining up in center field or right field alongside Ramón Laureano, solidifying the defense. However, it's the bat which proves most appealing to the aspiring contender in the American League West. 

Through 64 games this year, Marte owns a .305/.405/.451 slash with 52 runs, seven home runs, 25 RBI and 22 stolen bases over 275 plate appearances. He's recorded a career high walk rate (11.6 percent) with a 20.7 strikeout percentage and .375 weighted on-base average. His Statcast numbers yield 178 batted ball events with 16 barrels (nine percent) and 66 hard hits (37.1 hard hit percentage). His expected numbers based on quality of contact predict some regression with a .266 expected batting average, .416 expected slugging and .353 expected wOBA, 22 points below his actual. 

However, using his last statistical year as a guide, Marte's last 122 games results in 512 plate appearances with 86 runs, 13 home runs, 51 RBI, 32 stolen bases (fourth among qualified hitters in the majors) and a .292/.376/.442 slash line. Using his batted ball data, here's Marte's line drives and fly balls from the last 365 days with his new home in Oakland as the overlay: 

There could be some pull back in his batting average going forward, but it would be a result of an inflated batting average on balls in play this year (.376), not shifting from a home park in Miami to Oakland. Last, his rest-of-the-season projections on Fangraphs may be a guide to the remainder of the season for Marte: 

As for Miami, continuing its build to the future, it mortgaged two months of Marte for five years of Jesús Luzardo. Perhaps a fresh start with a forward thinking organization gets him back on track. He appeared in 13 games with Oakland this year making six starts spanning 38 innings with a 6.87 ERA, 4.35 SIERA and 1.63 WHIP, less than optimal. He still owns one of baseball's best sliders providing hope for the future. Pay close attention to how Miami develops him, hopefully they sort out his pitch usage chart helping Luzardo hone his craft for success. But as he arrives, he's searching for clarity, look at his usage rates by pitch, they're all over the place: 

Good news, his pedigree trumps the checkered injury past making him a worthy risk for a franchise still in a rebuild. 

Teams: Cincinnati and Colorado 

Player(s) to Cincinnati: Mychal Givens, RHP

Player(s) to Colorado: Case Williams, RHP and Noah Davis, RHP


Continuing to address its struggling bullpen, the Reds added three relievers over the course of the last 24 hours. In this deal, they picked up veteran Mychal Givens from the Rockies for two prospects. Givens recorded three wins in his five decisions this year with a 2.73 ERA, 3.86 SIERA and 1.31 WHIP in 31 games spanning 29.2 innings. He ramped up usage of his change-up this year, perhaps combatting the “sticky” substance checks and owns a double digit swinging strike percentage with each of his offerings: 

  • Givens 4-seam fastball - 12.4 SwStr%
  • Givens Change-up - 11.9 SwStr%
  • Givens Slider - 11.6 SwStr%

Since the Reds bullpen remains fairly fluid in terms of high leverage events, there's a chance Givens gets some ancillary save chances down the stretch. Though, one wonders if there's something wrong with Tejay Antone with the influx of arms arriving bolstering the bullpen. Stay tuned. 

There's never enough pitching prospects for the Rockies to accrue, so this deal makes sense. They received Case Williams who logged 11 starts in 12 outings at Single-A this year with a 5.55 ERA and 34 strikeouts in 47 innings. He needs to work on command but grew up in Colorado, so hopefully the homecoming helps his development. 

Noah Davis owned a 3.60 ERA at High-A with three wins of his 13 starts with a 77:35 K:BB and 1.22 WHIP. Both pitchers remain off the radar for fantasy help this or next year, but acquiring two prospects for a reliever on an expiring contract makes perfect sense. 

Teams: Cincinnati and New York

Player(s) to Cincinnati: Luis Cessa, RHP and Justin Wilson, LHP

Player(s) to New York: Player to be named later


In a clear salary dump ahead of the trade deadline, the Yankees sent long reliever Luis Cessa and southpaw Justin Wilson to the Reds for a player to be named. Cessa made 29 appearances for the Yankees this year with a 3-1 record, one hold and a 2.82 ERA in 38.1 innings of work. His 19.3 strikeout rate comes with a 10.6 walk percentage and a 1.25 WHIP. His ability to absorb innings makes him a decent long reliever, capable of working multiple innings once or twice a week as long as he gets rest in between. Not much upside, but a capable major league reliever. 

Justin Wilson missed time to injury this year and arrived in Cincinnati with a 4.72 ERA over 18 innings after pitching in 21 contests for the Yankees. His 15:9 K:BB and 1.50 WHIP make him a risky venture, but with Josh Osich cratering his last two outings, perhaps the veteran Wilson can fill in with limited exposure facing left-handed hitters.

Teams: Seattle and Pittsburgh

Player(s) to Seattle: Tyler Anderson, LHP

Player(s) to Pittsburgh: Carter Bins, C and Joaquin Tejada, RHP


Keeping the train rolling, Pittsburgh traded left-handed starting pitcher Tyler Anderson to Seattle for two prospects prior to his scheduled start on Tuesday night, spurning a previously reported deal with Philadelphia. Anderson takes his 5-8 record over 18 starts to the Mariners and moves into their rotation in an attempt to make a run at the playoffs. He's been steady within his game log tossing at least five innings in each of his starts this season with a 4.35 ERA, 4.42 SIERA and 1.20 WHIP over 103.1 innings. 

However, he can be homer prone, so shifting from PNC Park to T-Mobile Park should insulate his results going forward. A starter without much upside, manage his upcoming starts in order to maximize Anderson's fantasy appeal but this move does improve his chances at securing more wins heading to a better team. 

Pittsburgh gets 22-year old catching prospect Carter Bins. Newly promoted to Double-A, he hit .284 at High-A with seven home runs and 31 RBI over 40 games spanning 185 plate appearances. He recorded a 17.3 walk rate but also a 29.1 strikeout percentage, so he's a bit more aggressive than past prospects acquired this week. 

Also included in the deal, the Pirates received 18-year old right-handed pitcher Joaquin Tejada, presently pitching in a Dominican super league. This represents a lottery ticket getting a young arm with potential upside going forward. 


Teams: Seattle and Houston

Player(s) to Houston: Kendall Graveman, RHP and Rafael Montero, RHP

Player(s) to Seattle: Joe Smith, RHP and Abraham Toro, 3B


One day after collecting his fourth win of the season against his new teammates, Kendall Graveman changed dugouts after an emotional good-bye to his former Mariner teammates. His new team desperately needs high leverage help, unable to protect a 7-0 lead on Monday night. Here's why their new acquisition made sense:

Graveman's 4-0 this season with 10 saves, four holds and two blown saves with a 0.70 WHIP. His 2.93 SIERA portends some migration to the mean, but as a pending free agent, it behooves him to pitch well down the stretch for a payday this winter. Since most do not play in leagues which count holds, he loses most of his fantasy appeal with Ryan Pressly in line for the majority save share with the Astros. From an organizational standpoint, this trade makes sense, for fantasy, it stinks. 

Rafael Montero pitched his way into a designation for assignment, so view this trade as a swap of struggling relievers with one team selling high on an expiring contract for team control of an infielder, with eyes on the future. 

Seattle made this trade to acquire Abraham Toro, who turns 25 in December and comes with three minor league options. A highly valued commodity in these tumultuous times managing rosters. He's launched six home runs this season over 122 plate appearances but with a .211/.287/.385 slash line. He may eventually profile as a utility infielder, but there's time for him to develop at Triple-A if the Mariners decide to demote him. 

Joe Smith also heads to Seattle with a 7.48 ERA but a 3.89 SIERA and they hope to rekindle their reliever magic with him going forward. He likely works in low leverage events or absorbs innings with them trailing, so there's no fantasy value here either. 

Last, but not least, this may be the tip of the iceberg for general manager Jerry Dipoto: 

And continued…

Stay tuned…


Teams: Chicago Cubs and Oakland Athletics

Player(s) traded to Oakland: Andrew Chafin (L), RP

Player(s) traded to Chicago Cubs: Greg Diechmann, OF and Daniel Palencia, RHP


Not a blockbuster trade, but an important one for the A's bolstering their bullpen. With Jake Diekman (L) struggling of late, adding reliable Andrew Chafin (L) to the high leverage ladder makes sense. He's recorded 17 holds this year with only one blown save and racked up a 24.1 scoreless inning streak. He's been unscored upon in 39 of his 43 appearances with a 2.06 ERA and 0.84 WHIP with 37 strikeouts against 12 walks in 39.1 innings of work. 

Not only a left-handed specialist, he fares well against either type of hitter: 

  • Chafin versus LHH: 68 batters faced, 12:5 K:BB, .164 batting average against
  • Chafin versus RHH: 82 batters faced, 25:7 K:BB, .147 batting average against

Although he may remain a setup reliever, there's league only value in Chafin if he gets ancillary saves or wins in relief. Suffice it to say, he addresses a clear need in Oakland. 

As for the Cubs return in this deal, it keeps with the team's modus operandi, accruing upside players with team control. Greg Diechmann plays outfield and bats left-handed, something the major league team needs sooner rather than later. He's hitting .300/.433/.456 at Triple-A with four home runs and seven stolen bases. Here's a look at his swing: 

Daniel Palencia logged 14.1 innings at Single-A with 14 strikeouts and hit 99 MPH on the radar. He's a live arm with potential as a major league reliever with a proper development path. Stay tuned. 

Teams: New York Yankees and Pittsburgh Pirates

Player(s) traded to New York: Clay Holmes (R), RHP

Player(s) traded to Pittsburgh: Hoy Park (L), INF and Diego Castillo (R) (R), INF


In need of a reliever, the Yankees acquired Clay Holmes (R) for two middle infield prospects who may not have made the cut on the 40-man roster in the offseason, which would have exposed them to the Rule 5 draft. Holmes owns a 3-2 record this season with a 4.93 ERA, 3.77 SIERA and 1.43 WHIP with 44 strikeouts against 25 walks in 42 innings. He's given up 14 of his 24 earned runs in three outings (April 6, June 11 and July 20) this season but can dial up a nasty sinker. A return to his past swinging strike rate would be welcomed by the Yankees but it's worth a shot. 

Pittsburgh potentially added an immediate stopgap for Adam Frazier (L) in this trade with Hoy Park (L) primed for a promotion. During 48 games at Triple-A, Park slashed .327/.475/.567 with 44 runs, 10 home runs, 29 RBI and eight stolen bases in 223 plate appearances. His matching walk and strikeout rates (20.6 percent) provide hope he can carry over some production in the majors given the chance, which comes much easier with the Pirates than with the Yankees. League only players could do worse than taking a flier on Park if he's promoted this week. 

Diego Castillo (R) (R) played in 58 games at Double-A with 44 runs, 11 home runs, 32 RBI and eight steals in just under 250 plate appearances slashing .277/.345/.504 in them. He represents organizational depth with a chance at upside if he furthers his development. 


Teams: San Diego Padres & Pittsburgh Pirates

Players Traded To San Diego: Adam Frazier (L) (L)

Players Traded To Pittsburgh: Tucupita Marcano (L) (L), Jack Suwinski (L) (L), Michell Milliano


Amassing a lineup which can match-up with any starter remains a goal of general manager A.J. Preller. On Sunday, he fired the first shot in the National League West adding All-Star Adam Frazier (L) (L) from Pittsburgh: 

Through 98 games, Frazier owns a .324/.388/.488 slash with 58 runs, four home runs, 32 RBI and five stolen bases. Currently fourth in the majors in batting average, he's first in hits (125) and 11th in on-base percentage, lengthening an already strong Padres lineup. His arrival provides some ripple effects in the lineup if he takes over the lead-off spot. First, it helps Frazier's run scoring potential by hitting in front of Fernando Tatis Jr. (R) (R) and Manny Machado (R) (R). It also may shift Trent Grisham (L) (L) into a run producer if he slots in fifth reducing his runs scored but improving his RBI potential. 

Reports suggest Frazier will log time at second base, left field and right field with San Diego but more deals remain on the horizon for the franchise ahead of the trade deadline. Focus on his 8.2 walk rate with a 10.7 strikeout percentage and his ability to be on-base in the midst of a terrific season. His stock rises due to his new surroundings and ability to produce no matter the type of pitcher he's facing this season: 

  • Frazier versus left-handed pitching - .299/.364/.486 with three home runs
  • Frazier versus right-handed pitching - .333/.397/.434 with one home run

This could mean fewer at-bats for Eric Hosmer (L) (L), Wil Myers (R) (R) and Tommy Pham (R) (R) depending on who receives the night off against left-handed pitchers. Stay tuned. 

Already labeled a "seller” ahead of the trade deadline, the Pirates continue restocking their minor league system in this trade: 

Adding a player with a similar skill set to Frazier, the key to this trade may be Tucupita Marcano (L) (L)

After making the jump from High-A in 2019 to Triple-A this season, along with a cup of coffee in the majors when the Padres incurred a rash of injuries early on, Marcano heads to the Pirates with a .272/.367/.444 slash over 44 games at Triple-A this season with 31 runs, six home runs, 26 RBI and four stolen bases. He will need time to further develop in the minors and if his power continues trending up, it may enhance his profile. 

Jack Suwinski (L) (L) launched 15 home runs at Double-A with a .269/.398/.551 slash and helps a system bereft of outfield prospects. Michell Milliano split time at Single-A and High-A this year with a low 90's fastball and a plus-curve according to reports. He possesses strikeout potential as a reliever but needs to reduce his walk rate during his future in the minors. 

This may be the tip of the iceberg for Pittsburgh with veterans Tyler Anderson (L) (L), Richard Rodríguez (R) (R), Chad Kuhl (R) (R) and Chasen Shreve (L) (L) still on the trade block ahead of Friday's deadline.


Teams: New York Mets & Tampa Bay Rays

Players Traded To Tampa Bay: RP Tommy Hunter (R) (R) and Double-A Catcher, Matt Dyer (R) (R) 

Players Traded To New York: SP Rich Hill (L) (L)


Scrambling to fill innings, the Mets made a deal with Tampa Bay taking on veteran starting pitcher, Rich Hill (L) (L):

Many teams regret trading with the Rays, so it will be intriguing seeing how this works out. Reports speculate Hill will start on Sunday (July 24) for the Mets and may remain in the rotation until injured pitchers (Jacob deGrom (R) (R), Noah Syndergaard (R) (R)) can return. 

Bigger question, which iteration of Hill arrives in New York? When viewing his overall numbers, he's overachieved this season with good outcomes. However, looking at his starts prior to June 12, his first 12 games and his seven starts separate from each other, some disturbing trends emerge: 

Facing the pitcher in the National League may insulate his strikeout numbers, along with scouting reports potentially lagging behind. So maybe one treats Hill in fantasy like the Rays did this season. Bank his early results then trade him ahead of your league's deadline. 

Since there may not be immediate impact in the parts going back to the Rays, here's the rest of the trade landing Hill in New York:


Teams: Tampa Bay Rays & Minnesota Twins

Players traded to Tampa Bay Rays: Nelson Cruz (R) (R) & minor league pitcher Calvin Faucher

Players traded to Minnesota Twins: Minor leaguers pitchers Joe Ryan (R) (R) & Drew Strotman (R) (R)


Tampa Bay fired the first shot across the bow of the American League East and set the bar high for the upcoming trade deadline. Just over a week away from the one and only deadline on July 30th, the Rays finally get their target, Nelson Cruz (R) (R) (R) (R). A stable clubhouse presence, talented power hitter and owns plate discipline. In fact, only three qualified hitters possess a higher slugging percentage and a lower strikeout percent than Cruz: 

  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (R) (R) (R) (R) - .677 slugging percentage, 17.8 strikeout percentage
  • Matt Olson (L) (L) (L) (L) - .588 slugging percentage, 16.1 strikeout percentage
  • Max Muncy (L) (R) (L) (R) (L) (R) (L) (R) - .570 slugging percentage, 17.3 strikeout percentage

Through 85 contests, Cruz owns a .294/.370/.537 slash line with 44 runs, 19 home runs, 50 RBI, three stolen bases, a 10.1 walk rate, 18.2 strikeout percentage over 346 plate appearances. As a member of the Twins, he's produced 76 home runs with 191 RBI and a .304/.386/.598 line the last three seasons. Noting the Rays home ballpark can depress power, it will be intriguing seeing how he handles home contests. Here's all of his line drives and fly balls during his tenure in Minnesota with his new home in Tampa Bay as the backdrop: