Unread for 7/9
I’m in a 12 team, 5 by 5 keeper league, where everyone and their brother has offered me trades for A-Rod during the year. But I held strong and thanks to some overperforming pitchers (Erv, Lee, Saunders) I’m sitting in first place. But this latest A-Rod deal actually warrants consideration, so I thought I’d run it past you guys. I would give A-Rod and get Berkman, Lowell, and BJ Ryan.
My outfield is Abreu, Bay, McLouth, and basically a mixed bag of guys like Kubel, Spilborghs, Winn, etc., so I could definitely use a stud outfielder. Other than that, with Morneau at first, Longoria as my corner guy, and a closer list of Nathan, Street, CJ Wilson, and now Kobayashi, I’m generally pretty solid (first place, after all) and don’t want to rock the boat, but this is very, very tempting. I might try to swap BJ Ryan out for a starter if I do the deal. Any thoughts are appreciated.
Dan in Los Angeles
There’s no doubt Lance Berkman has equaled, if not outperformed, A-Rod’s numbers this season, but I’d try to strengthen the second and/or third players before finalizing the deal.
If you were to place Berk’s numbers with A-Rod’s, side-by-side it seems that Berkman is of equal, or greater, value to Rodriguez: Berkman — .347 AVG, 22 HRs, 70 RBIs, 75 runs, 12 SBs A-Rod — .317 AVG, 18 HRs, 50 RBIs, 52 runs, 13 SBs. Now, A-Rod missed nearly a month’s worth of games in late April/early-mid May with a balky quadriceps. It seems that Berkman is about 18 home runs from his average the past two seasons, and his .347 average is 31 points higher than any season-ending average in his last six seasons. Meanwhile, A-Rod is more than 25 home runs away from his average the past two seasons, and you have to imagine he will drive in far more than 50 runners in the second half. I just think A-Rod is in store for a monster second half. Although third base has been a relatively deep position this season, I think you should still prize elite-hitting third basemen more than first basemen/outfielders, such as Berkman. I might more enthusiastically consider the deal if you were to replace Lowell and Ryan. Neither is a realistic keeper option in a 12-team mixed league.
Despite a very respectable first half to this season (.295 AVG, 13 HRs, 54 RBIs), Lowell is a dramatic drop from A-Rod. You should also factor in more expected slumps from the rookie Longoria. Don’t assume he’ll produce at an elite level for the remainder of the year. Rookies go through adjustment periods, but the advantage you have on your roster is that A-Rod’s consistency can offset any Longoria power outages. Additionally, if you feel like you might flip B.J. Ryan for a starter, then why not just ask for a starter in place of Ryan?
I’m not opposed to trading A-Rod if you’re getting back Berkman and solid second and third options. I just don’t think Lowell and Ryan represent the kinds of options you should be willing to accept if you’re parting with Alex Rodriguez.