Everyone knows Trea Turner and that he broke out last year and really did some great things and helped a lot of teams in a playoff push.
Quick Question for those who did not have him: Why was he not on your team? Chances are it’s one of two reasons.
Either you did not want to have a minor leaguer on your bench for over half the season and someone got him off waivers much later in the season or you were out of FAAB.
Did you not plan your bucks well? Did you spend most of your FAAB on Tyler Glasnow? Jameson Taillon? Jose Berrios?
I’m here to break down a few ways to make sure that this does not happen again, so you have the FAAB strategy that fits you because flags fly forever.
How To Decode FAAB Strategies
AL & NL-Only Leagues
Let’s start with AL & NL-Only leagues where FAAB is your best friend. Whether it’s via trade or call-up, it is important not to waste FAAB early on guys like Seth Smith. Patience is key when it comes to FAAB, especially in non-mixed leagues. I suggest saving 80% of your FAAB for the end of July. Specifically, the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline. Not to mention that prospects starts to make appearances in the majors. That crop can really push your team to the next level. Stay calm, cool, and collective. The benefits will come to those who wait!
Okay, so back to mixed leagues. Spending a lot of FAAB early is not necessarily a bad thing. You can wind up with good players and a few names come to mind:
- Rich Hill was probably an addition to your team from the waiver wire
- Ian Kennedy gave us 15 quality starts
- Carlos Beltran was great for stretches
- Justin Turner really put it together the second half of the year
These guys might have helped push you to a championship and really made a difference to your team. These are guys that were drafted and/or dropped early in the season or not even drafted at all.
Spending with pleasure
When using this strategy, one has to spend with care! Throw $20 here, $30 there so you can get the players that you want throughout the year. When Wade Davis went down, you spent the $35 it took to take the next guy in line, and it worked out for you. It should be said that this does work out a lot of the time. Players get hurt or sent down and lose their jobs.
However, if you spent $25 on Trea Turner who was only played in two games and was subsequently sent back to the minors for over a month, probably did not help you. Jake Lamb comes to mind here as well. “Rake” Lamb put up numbers at an absurd pace. Therefore, it would have been justified to spend on him at the time. In fact, the owner may have dropped him at some point within those few weeks. This is a very viable strategy and one that gets a stamp of approval.
Hold and splurge
When using this strategy, you are hoping for call-ups and guys that you are high on that may get dropped, such as Justin Turner. He stunk for most of the first half, and then raked in the second half. Trea Turner, who nailed all the dongs down the stretch, was very key. Blake Snell had a few great starts! Jharel Cotton was solid.
Keepers in mind
If you play in a keeper or dynasty league, combining some of these will help. Especially if you are not in the playoff hunt, this strategy will boost your team’s outlook for years to come. Picking up prospects a few weeks, or a month in advance could really help your team in the future. Most importantly, it could help your FAAB dollars for players that get hurt, or someone who might get sent down. It’s always a great idea to keep the future in mind.
One of the most popular FAAB strategies is to save the FAAB for closers. Waiting for a player or two to get hurt or lose their job, so you can spend to take the new closers is a good strategy. Having a plan to not draft any closers in order to use FAAB budget primarily on future closers is a great idea with this strategy. However, you do take the risk of not getting any closers who keep the gig all sesason. Also, the risk is that those guys will be traded to a team that wants a better set-up man. Monitoring the Closer Depth Chart can prevent some of those issues. This is a very good FAAB strategy, but it holds a lot of risk.
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