Trading a big bat can actually help out both teams from a fantasy perspective. Let’s take a look at the recent Braves/Cubs deal. Not only do the Bravos pick up the bat that they were looking for with Troy Glaus faltering, but the Cubbies will now rely on Marlon Byrd to be the primary RBI guy. Let’s take a closer look at the two of them and a few other sleepers who are going to help your team this week.
#1. Marlon Byrd, CF, Chicago Cubs
Despite Byrd’s .283 career batting average, he has stepped up his game this season and is batting .307 with 11 home runs and 53 RBI. The Cubs traded Derrek Lee to Atlanta which provide more RBI opportunities for Byrd & Alfonso Soriano. Over the last seven games, Byrd had seven hits, three runs, double, home run and four RBI. Look for him to have a good week.
#2. Derek Lee, 1B, Atlanta Braves
Lee was just traded to the Braves which will pay huge dividends in the long run for his fantasy owners. He wont fill the third base position that was left open due to Chipper Jones’ injury, but he offers a big bat in the line up. For the season he’s batting .251 with 16 home runs and 56 RBI. The new change of scenery should benefit the veteran as he now has some added motivation.
#3. Jerry Hairston, 2B, San Diego Padres
Hairston is a scrappy veteran that’s been in the league for 12 years. For the season he’s batting .254 with 10 home runs and 48 RBI. Hairston is only owned by 30% of leagues and there is a great chance that you can pick him up on your waiver wire and solidify your second baseman position for the week—you could do a lot worse.
#4. Yadier Molina, C, St. Louis Cardinals
Molina is batting .252 with five home runs and 45 RBI for the season. Catchers are hard to come by so when you find one with good match ups and with some creditability in the league, you need to take advantage. He’s only owned in 71% of leagues and could very well have a nice week with games against the Pirates & Nationals.
#5. Alex Rios, CF, Chicago White Sox
Rios is one of the streakiest players in baseball as evidenced by his 2009 season. After being claimed on waivers by the ChiSox from Toronto, it seems that Rios has really taken to his new digs. He’s having a phenomenal year (.293/17/68) and is especially valuable with 24 steals. He’s got a legitimate chance to be a 20/20 guy while driving in close to 100 runs, and I’ll take that type of production on my fantasy team any day. Don’t make the mistake of benching him this week as he’s getting ready to explode again.