The MLB General Manager Winter Meeting are underway in Florida this week and their already making a splash that is sure to affect fantasy baseball managers across the globe! Yesterday, the baseball world got a real big shock as Jason Werth hit the mother load with a seven year deal with the Washington Nationals. Huge break for NL only leagues as Werth, who is a borderline elite hitter in the NL, stays in the National League. My guess is he will probably bat cleanup and give strong protection to 3B Ryan Zimmerman. Big pickup for the Nats although they lost Adam Dunn to the American League after signing with the Chicago White Sox. The NL loses one of the best and most consistent power bats in the league in Dunn.
Today, a couple of other big headlines as the NL has been weakened by losing both Adrian Gonzalez to the Boston Red Sox via trade for prospects and Mark Reynolds to the Baltimore Orioles for prospects. Gonzalez has been an elite power bat the last few years playing at Petco Field and Reynolds was one of the best NL hitters in 2009. In 2010 however, Reynolds had big power numbers but killed NL Only owners with a .198 Batting Average. While his BA was a killer for NL owners this year regardless, his power numbers will be missed.
On the starting pitching front however, NL only leagues got good news today as Shaun Marcum was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers in a deal where Milwaukee gave up top 2B prospect Brett Lawrie. Marcum last year while coming off a major injury (did not pitch in 2009) had 13W, 3.64ERA, 1.15 Ratio, 165K's in 195 1/3 IP for Toronto last year. Those are really good numbers and when you think that Marcum will go from the AL East to the NL, one has to think that as long as Marcum stays healthy he can pitch like an elite pitcher in the NL in 2011. This is a big help for NL only leagues as the recent news on Johan Santana is not good as he will be out until at least June due to his off-season shoulder surgery. The Mets are going to be extremely careful so Santana will not be rushed and quite frankly coming off shoulder surgery one would have to think that at best Santana will have a transition year in 2011 where he pitches around 80 to 90 innings.
NL King - C.Lizza