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Early MLB Trade Deadline Fantasy Analysis

With the MLB non-waiver trade deadline slowly creeping up on July 31 at 4pm Eastern Time, teams are beginning the annual flurry of last minute trades. Some deals have already been made a few days before the deadline that could affect player values in fantasy leagues. Here are a few of the traded players with fantasy stocks rising or falling.

(Note: Stats and numbers are as of July 28)

Jaime Garcia  

Garcia was shipped from Atlanta to Minnesota a few days ago as the Twins added an arm to their rotation in an attempt to continue competing for a wild-card spot. His stock for wins rises due to the fact he’ll be getting slightly more run support. In Atlanta, Garcia received approximately 4.9 runs of offense in each start. Current starting pitchers for the Twins receive approximately 5.4 to 7.0 runs of offense per game. Garcia will continue to rack up starts and will likely become the third starting pitcher in the Minnesota rotation, behind Ervin Santana and Jose Berrios, if he’s not traded by Monday.

Jose Quintana 

Quintana didn’t have to move very far when he was traded to the Cubs, moving from one area of Chicago to another. The Cubs sent a package of prospects in order to grab the starter from the White Sox. Quintana will be sitting behind Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester in the Cubs rotation, but so far he’s pitched very well since joining the team, picking up two wins in his first two starts. Quintana will also likely be competing in his first ever playoffs, giving the Cubs another weapon to use in an area they’ve lacked for most of the season. As long as he continues to pitch like this and racks up strikeouts, his fantasy value will stay high.

Eduardo Nunez 

Nunez joined the Red Sox in a trade from San Francisco earlier this week. He was brought in an attempt to spark the Boston offense and possibly hold down the hot corner for the rest of the season. However, Boston also called up their top prospect, Rafael Devers, a 20-year-old third baseman that homered for his first major league hit. Both guys can either start at third base or bat as the designated hitter but Red Sox manager, John Farrell, said he believes Nunez will be an everyday hitter. Just be cautious if Devers gets hot and grabs the starting spot at third base, Nunez might see a slight decrease in his number of at-bats. Nunez is batting a solid .311 this season, so he’ll definitely be worth starting in leagues as long as he’s starting for Boston.

Lucas Duda 

Duda has spent the last seven seasons with the Mets before being shipped to Tampa Bay for a young pitching prospect. The Rays grabbed a huge bat to add to their lineup, bringing another lefty hitter into their offense. Duda will likely slide into the designated hitter spot with Logan Morrison holding down first base during his breakout season this year. Duda’s .532 slugging percentage is ranked second on the Tampa Bay roster, only trailing Morrison. He homered in his debut with Tampa on Friday night, his 17th home run this season, and against in his second game on Saturday. This is great opportunity for Duda; a new change of scenery provides him the chance to bat in the middle of the order and drive in runs. He’s a threat for the long ball and can get on base, drawing 37 walks this season.

Howie Kendrick  

With five outfielders on the disabled list, the Nationals pulled the trigger and brought Kendrick in to help their outfield until the regulars get healthy again. Kendrick is batting .340 this season but only has 141 at-bats. He’s been a health risk this season, missing large periods of games on the disabled list. He’ll likely be batting towards the bottom of the Washington lineup, getting at-bats only until the normal Nationals outfield is back. If he stays healthy, he might be worth picking up for a short time because he’ll be getting plenty of at-bats. But once everyone comes back, Kendrick’s fantasy stock will take a hit.

Pat Neshek

The Phillies sent the 10-year journeyman packing to Colorado in exchange for three prospects. Neshek has been having an incredible season, posting a 1.12 ERA through 40.1 innings. Opposing batters are hitting a mere .199 this season. The only problem is that he’ll be pitching at Coors Field now, which is widely regarded as the most hitter-friendly park. Neshek will not be the closer, as Greg Holland is still holding that spot with 31 saves this season. Neshek will continue to pick up strikeouts and make appearances out of the bullpen, but it’s expected that his ERA might take a slight bump upwards.

David Robertson 

The Yankees got a package deal of Robertson, Todd Frazier, and Tommy Kahnle in exchange for Tyler Clippard and a few prospects. Robertson went from the closer of the White Sox to a setup man in a very crowded Yankee bullpen. Aroldis Chapman is already the established closer for New York, with Dellin Betances working the late innings. In the week since the trade, Robertson was dropped in 10.2% of ESPN leagues. Robertson will still get appearances out of the pen, but he’ll no longer get save opportunities, which severely hurts his fantasy stock.

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