Should you trade Justin Verlander in points leagues?

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I realize that up until now that I have done only drop/add columns, mostly on deeper leagues.  I decided to do something different for points league players simply because the big names are not always the big performers in those formats.  So instead of a drop/add for our points league players, I will present players to target.  Some of these guys may be available on waivers in your league.  If they are, good for you!  You don’t have to give up anything!

The point totals are based on ESPN standard points league scoring.  If you are in a custom points league, the value may be slightly different.  For example, my league counts five points for a quality start, and minus 5 for a blown saves.  Stolen bases are also worth two instead of one.  Most leagues will have some sort of quirk like this, so you might have to adjust accordingly.

This piece will focus on pitchers.  The outfielders and catchers are here.  The left side of the infield is here.  The right side of the infield is here.

May 3, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Johnny Cueto (47) pitches during the eighth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Great American Ball Park. The Reds defeated the Brewers 6-2. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports


Starting Pitchers:

Target Players:

Johnny Cueto, Reds: Yes, it seems that Cueto has finally figured things out.  He is even more valuable in points leagues because he has three double digit strikeout games and two complete games, one of which was a shutout.  Most points leagues give extra points for complete games and shutouts.  Can Cueto keep this up?  The 1.31 ERA seems unsustainable.  That said, I would not be surprised if he finished the season in the top ten of pitchers, which is far above where he was drafted.  Want a staggering stat?  Cueto has 60 strikeouts and has given up just 25 hits in 55 innings.

Sonny Gray, Athletics: Gray is off to a great start.  His 1.91 ERA will probably go up some.  Still, Gray pitched well against the Red Sox, and shut out a good Rangers team in Arlington.  The talent is there, and he might be had for less than the premium pitcher he is showing to be simply because he is not a household name………yet.

Dillon Gee, Mets: Gee hasn’t given up more than two runs in a start in a month now.  Gee has yet to really catch on in standard leagues because he does not tally a bunch of strikeouts.  You don’t need strikeouts to be valuable in a points league if you keep the baserunners down, which Gee has done so far.  He has only given up 35 hits and ten walks.  He might even still be available on your waiver wire!  The only problem with Gee is that wins might be hard to come by with that offense…..

Yordano Ventura, Royals: Here is another guy that you should try to get before he gets too expensive.  Ventura has more than a strikeout an inning, and has walked only ten batters.  That kind of control will equal continued points league success.

Rick Porcello, Tigers:  Porcello is another guy that won’t rack up strikeouts, but he has walked only six batters all year.  And he plays for the Tigers, which means he has a chance at a win even if he has an off game.  Porcello is a sneaky source of points in a points league.

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