So it is the morning after. You wake up is a daze, unaware of what really happened. Maybe you had a few too many drinks and now your headache proves you are right. You are trying to recall who that guy was at the end of your night, names are running through your head and finally you remember. It wasn’t just the guy at the end of the night you are ashamed of, but three guys from throughout the night.
Now you need to perform the dreaded, trade block of shame.
You have an abundance of mediocre (at best) right fielders on your bench and realize that your only closer is Bobby Parnell. Not exactly the draft you had mapped out. Don’t worry. We have all been there. What is important is that you learn from your experience.
Another important thing to take away from this, a proper trade block strategy.
Of course you are hurting for saves, and have an abundance of RF’s—none of whom you want—but no one really needs to know that. Don’t make yourself come off as desperate with a blast email or message board post lamenting your team’s struggles.
In fact, it is best if you play it as close to the vest as possible so that you don’t forfeit too much bargaining power. You also don’t want to overreact and make a terrible trade out of frustration. Just take a breath, click over to your trade block and set the trade talks in motion.
Figure out what you would consider parting with aside from your abundance of RFs. Perhaps you also ended up with a good stable of starting pitchers. The reality is that you have to give a little to get a little. Also figure out what you aren’t willing to part with so that you don’t have to deal offers that you don’t want.
On the Block
Willing to Deal
|Nick Swisher||Homer Bailey||Prince Fielder|
|Nick Markakis||Dan Straily||Dustin Pedroia|
|Corey Hart||Yovani Gallardo||Madison Bumgarner|
Sometimes sites do not have a willing to deal category, simply make a note in the comments section of the trade block. If your league doesn’t have a comments section of a willing to deal section, find a new league.
But seriously, if your league doesn’t have a middle category, do not feel the need to label each player with on the block or untouchable. Simply leave guys that you are willing to move off and note that in your comment section.
Search the waiver wire for possible additions. You don’t always have to resort to trading to upgrade, and sometimes it is the worst possible route. Sometimes guys in possible committee situations like in Chicago, Houston, or Texas get passed on, then missed. These are the guys that you can take a chance on early and hope for the best.
- Chicago White Sox: Nate Jones, Matt Lindstrom, Daniel Webb
- Houston Astros: Matt Albers, Jesse Crain, Josh Fields, Chad Qualls
- Texas Rangers: Neftali Feliz, Tanner Scheppers, Joakim Soria
Be proactive. Go through and take note of teams that maybe went heavy with closers, or lack offensive depth and see if maybe you can make a decent offer. Decent is the optimal phrase here because you don’t want to risk losing your league mates respect so early in the season by offering bad trades. However you don’t want to sit back and just wait for offers to come in.
Maybe you have a spot open up due to injury and add one of the above potential closers. You can MAYBE take one of those guys and one of your average RFs and come up with a slight upgrade to at least a sure thing at closer. Houston Street might be a reasonable option since he is past his prime and comes with injury risks. However he does have the San Diego Padres closer job locked down.
Of course I like a pro-active approach to trading, working the waiver wire, and managing a team in general. However it is only right after your draft, even the early games in Australia haven’t been played, and it’s a very long season.
So be patient in figuring out your team. You want to avoid a knee jerk reaction where you cave and trade one of the solid foundation guys you did end up with, like Madison Bumgarner for Greg Holland or something terrible like that. Trust me, it happens.
The key to avoiding a disaster like this is to not get ahead of yourself. Always take a minute to ask yourself, “does this trade make sense?” Sometimes guys can begin to rationalize trades based on needs, surplus, or scoring systems, etc. Even under those circumstances however, the deals often don’t make sense.
You don’t want to get fleeced in a moment of irrational thinking. So just make sure you take your time when it comes to assessing any trade before you pull the trigger.