The Commish Online                                                                                
Trading the Hot Hand
April 28, 2010

You've lucked into a few players who have been on fire in April and you are looking to cash in while the iron is still hot.  Fantasy baseball has been around long enough that you are likely in a league with some experienced players who recognize the difference between a hot streak and a great player.  That doesn't mean you can't make a deal - you just have to be savvy and realistic about your goals.

Like any trade, the most important factor is identifying your needs.  If you aren't filling a need, then why bother trading a solid piece of your puzzle?  The second factor is identifying the other owner's need.  Don't try trading Carlos Pena to the guy who already has Pujols and Kendry Morales unless you want fellow owners to know that you are incapable of looking at the other side of the deal.

Some names that come to mind as solid trade bait right now: Matt Capps, Ubaldo Jimenez,  and Paul Konerko.  Capps is 9 for 9 in save opportunities this year, and if Washington can continue its mediocrity, that's a good place for a closer because many of the games should be close.  No one is going to confuse Capps for Rivera but there's a good chance that several teams in your league are desperate for another closer.  While most owners are smart enough to know that Scott Podsednik won't hit .400 forever, performances like the aforementioned threesome at least suggest these players are healthy and playing well and may surpass their yearly projections a bit, so owners will take a slight risk on them.

Find that owner in need of a closer, pinpoint a player that fits your team's needs who was drafted a round or two ahead of Capps who is slumping but you believe will emerge unscathed and make a deal.  Attempting big deals often leads to no deals, while a small deal often leads to an improved club.  Remember, leave the greed to Gordon Gekko and focus on improving your team, one small move at a time.
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