Tout Wars Free Agency Bidding Recap – Sunday, June 23

Welcome to this week’s summary of the top free agent bids in each of the five Tout Wars leagues, with links to the detailed bidding action following our 8 p.m. ET deadline each Sunday evening. All prices are on a $1000 base.

After you scan the detail below, please join our live chat, starting at 9 p.m. ET Sunday evening, to discuss these results with Todd Zola of Mastersball and other Touts.

American League

16 new players were rostered this week in the American League-only format. Prices were subdued, with the most expensive player being Cleveland right-hander Adam Plutko, acquired by Chris Liss of Rotowire for $47. Other than a seven-run clunker in his second start, the 27-year old has not allowed more than two runs in any of his five starts. However, last time out, Plutko was pulled in the fifth, so he apparently is working on a short rope.

Apparently, the time for 22-year old Luis Arraez of the Twins is now, as he joined Jeff Erickson’s team for $35. The second base prospect is batting .364 and a .500 OBP though his first 14 MLB games.

Next in the financial hierarchy this week were a pair of $16 winning offers for Joakim Soria of the A’s by Colton and the Wolfman and Aaron Civale of the Tribe by Erickson. The ninth inning is at least temporarily open in Oakland and Civale threw six scoreless innings on just two hits in his MLB debut against the Tigers.

Review all 6/23 AL bids here.

National League

This week in NL Tout, 14 free agents were acquired. Top dollar price of $101 went for starting pitcher Logan Allen of San Diego. The prospect did not have a good start to 2019 in Triple-A, but after a strong MLB debut against the Brewers this week, he has been given at least one more start, with the Orioles next. Tristan H. Cockcroft of ESPN is Allen’s new owner.

Cursed with bad luck with closers this year, I dropped $55 for Michael Lorenzen, who has collected three saves already for the Reds with Raisel Iglesias continuing to be shaky.

Andy Behrens of Yahoo made a speculative $46 winning offer for Cardinals reliever Tyler Webb, likely based on an emergency save collected by the lefty on Saturday when (my closer) Jordan Hicks exited with triceps tendinitis. If Hicks misses any considerable time, my money would be all in on Carlos Martinez and/or John Gant getting the opportunities ahead of Webb.

Review all 6/23 NL bids here.

Mixed Auction

It was a busy week in Mixed Auction, with 21 free agents acquired via FAAB this Sunday night. Still, they stayed just under triple digits in their bidding.

At $99, former and current closer Roenis Elias of Seattle joined the roster of Yahoo’s Scott Pianowski. The 30-year old has four saves in his last five appearances and nine on the season.

Emilio Pagan of Tampa Bay was acquired by Zach Steinhorn of Creativesports for $88. Though the right-hander has just two wins and four saves this season, his ERA/WHIP combination of 1.23 and 0.818 would help any roster. Interim saves are possible with Jose Alvarado and now, Diego Castillo, on the shelf.

Sadly, the next most expensive free agent did not go for $77. Instead, $57 fetched Oakland starter Liam Hendriks, who picked a save on Saturday. He may not be the favorite for saves in Blake Treinen’s absence, but who knows for sure?

Review all 6/23 Mixed Auction bids here.

Mixed Draft

An even 20 free agents were purchased via FAAB in Mixed Draft this week.

Padres starter Allen topped the bidding at $123, going to Perry Van Hook, followed by Hendriks at $73 to Adam Ronis.

Tim McCullough acquired Indians power-hitting first base prospect Bobby Bradley for $61. 24 home runs and 55 RBI in 67 Triple-A games are a solid return, with the 32 percent strikeout rate concerning. Called up on Sunday, Bradley should get another chance to earn a starting role.

League leader Rudy Gamble picked up Nationals first sacker Matt Adams for $56. The slugger dodged a recent minor oblique strain while playing regularly in the absence of oft-injured Ryan Zimmerman.

Review all 6/23 Mixed Draft bids here.

Head to Head

While the least number of players were acquired this week in Head-to-Head, the highest bid was placed here. Marlins prospect Zac Gallen fetched $179 of league-leader Clay Link’s FAAB. Gallen was leading the minors in innings pitched and ERA before his strong MLB debut this week against the team that traded him away, the Cardinals.

Hendriks went for $39 to RotoLady, aka Andrea LaMont.

Despite an uneven first start on Friday, well-rested new Braves starter Dallas Keuchel fetched a $33 winning bid from Dr. Roto.

Alex Chamberlain went $22 for St. Louis’ Carlos Martinez, who stepped in as closer for the Cardinals for Jordan Hicks last September and may have to do it again, depending on how Hicks progresses with his forearm injury.

Review all 6/23 Head to Head bids here.

Lawr Michaels to be inducted into the FSGA Hall of Fame

The Fantasy Sports and Gaming Association announced Lawr Michaels as the 2019 inductee into the Fantasy Sports Hall of Fame. The ceremony will take place on Friday, June 28 in New York City at the 2019 FSGA Summer Conference.

Tout Wars own Glenn Colton and Rick Wolf will commemorate the announcement this Tuesday night, June 25 on Colton and the Wolfman, heard on Sirius XM Fantasy Radio from 9 PM – 11 PM ET. Several special guests will share memories of Lawr in advance of this well deserved honor.

Tout Daily: Laying the Woodruff

It’s the last week of Period 3 with three more Golden Tickets in the balance. Here’s who the Touts are counting on to get them into the Championship Tournament.

Gene McCaffrey (The Athletic, @WiseGuyGene)

Pitcher: Brandon Woodruff – I have him as the best pitcher tonight regardless of price, against the compulsively whiffing Padres.

Hitter: Robinson Cano – Healthy and hitting, a super-bargain at $3100.

Anthony Aniano (Rotoballer, @AAnianoFantasy)

Pitcher: Brandon Woodruff – He’s striking out 29% of the batters he’s facing and goes against a Padres team that is 21st in runs per game and 27th in strikeouts per game with 9.77.

Hitter: Ramon Laureano – Laureano leads an Oakland stack against Ynoa and his 5.02 ERA and less than 7 Ks/9. Laureano has 8 HRs vs RHP this season and 4 HRs 4SBs in his last 15 games.

Todd Zola (Mastersball, @toddzola)

Pitcher: Brett Anderson – Fading Woodruff and need some additional differentiation

Hitter: Michael Conforto – Seems to work for Phil

Jeff Boggis (Fantasy Football Empire, @JeffBoggis)

Pitcher: Julio Teheran – Has an ERA under 2.00 in 8 consecutive games. He is one of the hottest starting pitchers on one of the hottest teams right now with the Atlanta Braves owning the NL East.

Hitter: Ian Desmond – In the past 2 weeks, Ian Desmond has been on a tear, batting .386 with 3 home runs and 15 RBI.

Charlie Wiegert (CDM Sports, @GFFantasySports)

Pitcher: Jack Flaherty – Due to rebound at home vs light hitting Marlins, and hopefully tack up 7 + k’s

Hitter: Matt Carpenter – Another homer, who I hope homers again tonight. I expect the Cardinal hitters to have a better approach tonight than they did against Yamamoto last week.

Jeff Erickson (Rotowire, @Jeff_Erickson)

Pitcher: Mitch Keller – Last round of this scoring period, need to take some chances. Keller at least gets strikeouts and is facing the Tigers.

Hitter: Dan Vogelbach – Matchup against Homer Bailey? Yes please.

Howard Bender (Fantasy Alarm, @RotobuzzGuy)

Pitcher: Jack Flaherty – Come on. It’s Miami! The Fish stink. K-rate should be solid with minimal damage via hits/walks on DK

Hitter: Jorge Bonifacio – How about this tasty dart? Kikuchi pitches to a ton of contact and Bonifacio is hot out of the gate following his call-up. He’s got four hits, including two doubles and 3 RBI in his last two games.

Tout Wars Free Agency Bidding Recap – Sunday, June 16

Here is the latest weekly report summarizing the top free agent bids in each of the five Tout Wars leagues, with links to the detailed bidding action following our 8 p.m. ET deadline each Sunday evening. All prices are on a $1000 base.

After you scan the detail below, please join our live chat, starting at 9 p.m. ET Sunday evening, to discuss these results with Todd Zola of Mastersball and other Touts.

American League

A lucky total of 13 free agents were purchased this week in American League Tout, however, prices were subdued.

League leader Jason Collette paid the top dollar, $27, for lefty Colin Poche. Since Collette follows the Rays especially closely, he must see something in the 25-year old reliever beyond his mediocre Triple-A and limited MLB numbers to date.

Seattle shortstop Austin Nola joined the roster of Nando DiFino of The Athletic for $18. The 29-year old, the older brother of Aaron, can play all over the infield and catch and had good all-around numbers at Triple-A. Maybe he can carve out a reserve role in his first stint in the majors.

For $14, Aaron Bummer of the White Sox was acquired by Larry Schechter for $14. The 25-year old lefty picked up a stray save this week, and could serve as a closer-in-reserve if the Sox trade Alex Colome this summer.

Review all 6/16 AL bids here.

National League

Only nine players were acquired in NL Tout Wars this week, with starting pitching leading the way.

Jordan Yamamoto was promoted from Double-A by Miami to fill-in for injured starter Jose Urena. The 23-year old tossed seven scoreless innings at the Cardinals in his debut, striking out five. Yamamoto will draw St. Louis again on Wednesday. Andy Behrens of Yahoo acquired the right-hander for $146.

His teammate, Elieser Hernandez, posted a solid outing last week, also against the Cards. He also gets St. Louis next, on Monday. Grey Albright decided an $11 bid was right, and he won.

Another fill-in starter, Daniel Ponce de Leon of St. Louis, was picked up for $27 by Mastersball’s Todd Zola. The walks are high and five innings are about all one can expect from the 27-year old righty, but the Cards have a need with few other obvious choices.

Review all 6/16 NL bids here.

Mixed Auction

Bidding was brisker this week in Mixed Auction, with 19 free agents acquired via FAAB.

The most expensive player added is Toronto’s Joe Biagini, for $57 to Gene McCaffrey. The 29-year old reliever has two stray saves this season, and has a 3.72 ERA and a 1.103 WHIP to go with 28 strikeouts in 29 innings.

Brent Hershey of BaseballHQ picked up St. Louis reliever Giovanny Gallegos for $45. The right-hander, acquired from the Yankees in the Luke Voit trade, has received more meaningful innings for the Cardinals, but is unlikely to get a shot at the ninth inning.

For a dollar less, Gallegos’ second base teammate Kolten Wong was acquired by Scott Pianowski of Yahoo. The 29-year old started the season strongly, slumped in May, but has picked up his game in the last two weeks, batting .350 with five stolen bases.

Review all 6/16 Mixed Auction bids here.

Mixed Draft

It was a busy Sunday night in Mixed Draft with 22 free agents acquired via FAAB.

Reborn Phillies infielder Scott Kingery fetched the highest bid both in Mixed Draft and all five leagues, a $314 winning offer made by Michael Beller. The 25-year old launched four home runs and plated eight over his last six games while batting .455. That increased Kingery’s season batting average to .347 and OBP to .389.

Another Philadelphia player, starting pitcher Zach Eflin, went for $167 to Scott White of USATODAY. In 13 starts, the 25-year old right-hander has a solid 2.81 ERA and 1.150 WHIP.

Marlins starter Yamamoto fetched a winning $127 offer from Perry Van Hook.

Review all 6/16 Mixed Draft bids here.

Head to Head

15 players were picked up this week in Head to Head Tout.

Leading the way with the top two bids is Ian Kahn, who spent over a quarter of his full-year FAAB, $235 specifically. For that, he acquired NL East offense in Kingery for $144 and outfielder Garrett Cooper of the Marlins for $91. Finally healthy, Cooper is hitting .400 with a .474 OBP and 13 RBI over the last three weeks.

Andrea Lamont, aka RotoLady, dropped a total of $101 on four pitchers – Ian Kennedy, Adam Plutko, Merrill Kelly and Pedro Strop. For $30, Cleveland starter Plutko is an especially intriguing selection. In two starts since his return from Triple-A, the 27-year old beat the Yankees and Tigers with a 3.00 ERA and 10 strikeouts in 12 innings.

Review all 6/16 Head to Head bids here.

Tout Daily Picks: Landing on Hudson

It’s the third week of Period 3, marking the halfway point of the Tout Daily regular season. Here are some of the pitchers and hitters the Touts are touting for Tuesday night.

Charlie Wiegert (CDM Sports, @GFFantasySports)

Pitcher: Dakota Hudson – If Wacha can shut down the Marlins, so can Hudson

Hitter: Jay Bruce – He’s been on a homer terror, and hopefully he’ll do plant one against Duplantier

Howard Bender (Fantasy Alarm, @RotobuzzGuy)

Pitcher: Dakota Hudson – Doesn’t get you good Ks and pitchess to a little more contact than you’d like when using on DK, but has five-straight qaulity starts (six of his last seven) and minimizes the damage when he does allow base-runners. Solid option on FD (cash or GPP) on a Coors Slate and a fantastic pay-down for your second starter on DK.

Hitter: Brian Dozier – Still surprisingly cheap on both FD and DK which helps gets you a slice of Coors in your cash lineups. Crazy strong numbers against left-handed pitching and even if the Nats chase Banuelos early, their bullpen has posted a 9.43 ERA over the last seven days.

Gene McCaffrey (The Athletic, @WiseGuyGene)

Pitcher: Trevor Bauer – Always a good bet to put up 20+ points at home, with a reasonable chance for 30+, at $9900.

Hitter: Kris Bryant – Paying up for the chance of two home runs.

Rob Leibowitz (Rotoheaven, @rob_leibowitz)

Pitcher: Trent Thornton – Price point and swing & miss stuff vs. Baltimore makes him a worthwhile gamble.

Hitter: Luke Voit – Right-handed power against the traditionally homer-friendly Jason Vargas.

Phil Hertz (BaseballHQ, @prhz50)

Pitcher: Spencer Turnbull – Like the matchup against KC

Hitter: Trea Turner – Starting to heat up.

Jeff Boggis (Fantasy Football Empire, @JeffBoggis)

Pitcher: Dakota Hudson – Three reasons to roll with Dakota Hudson tonight: 1. He faces the Miami Marlins. 2. He’s only $6,200 tonight, making it much easier to roster decent hitters. 3. A low K/9, but high QS.

Hitter: Derek Dietrich – Since his 3 home run performance on 5/28, Derek Dietrich has not hit a home run in 8 consecutive games. Tonight he breaks that streak. I’m rostering him tonight at $4,700 because he’s batting cleanup. He sits against left-handing pitchers, but tonight he faces right-handed pitcher, Trevor Bauer.

Mike Gianella (Baseball Prospectus, @MikeGianella)

Pitcher: Luis Castillo – Peripherals have been a little shaky of late, but I like him away from Great American against a Cleveland linup that hasn’t been very good this year.

Hitter: Trevor Story – Story in Coors against a lefty is worth the big investment.

Dan Strafford (FNTSY Radio, @DanStrafford)

Pitcher: Elisier Hernandez – The pride of the New Orleans Baby Cakes, Elisier Hernandez.Hernandez doesn’t have a ton of stats to back up any significant interest outside of being extremely cheap with Coors on the slate. He did strike 69 batters in 48 innings at Triple A this year. (Obligatory nice). The Cardinals strike out at a 23.1% rate against right handers, not a significant number to hang your hat on. I’ll take the savings and stack as many Coors batters as possible. I’ll be pairing him with Dakota Hudson and others.

Hitter: Cody Bellinger – We start with the obvious statement that anyone in Coors Field should be firmly on your radar. If I’m looking outside of Coors Field, Cody Bellinger is a pricey bat that is in a solid spot in Anahemi. Home runs are up at the home for the Halos and Felix Pena, the projected long reliever, has yielded 1.42 homeruns per 9 to left handed batters on the year.

Tim Heaney (Rotowire, ESPN, @TeamHeaney)

Pitcher: Kenta Maeda – Maeda sports a 2.38 ERA, 11.51 K/9 and 0.40 BB/9 across hias past four starts. If not for Hyun-Jin Ryu’s absurdity, Maeda would be getting more praise.

Hitter: Stephen Piscotty – This is a play for when Jalen Beeks takes over as the primary pitcher, when Piscotty can use his .417 wOBA and 168 wRC+, which both rank in the top 25.

Todd Zola (Mastersball, @toddzola)

Pitcher: John Means – The Blue Jays don’t have the means to hit LHP, toting the 5th lowest wOBA into Camden Yards.

Hitter: Andrew Benintendi – Call me a homer (you’re a homer) but I’m stacking Red Sox while most everyone else will be focusing on Coors

Jeff Erickson (Rotowire, @Jeff_Erickson)

Pitcher: Jake Junis – Facing the Tigers, and allows me to afford guys good at hitting the baseball.

Hitter: Jose Abreu – Patrick Corbin has really struggled recently, especially on the road and against right-handers. Both Abreu and Eloy Jimenez are great options tonight.

Tout Table: Lowball Trade Offers

This week’s question: How do you handle lowball trade offers? What do you do when a trade you consider is lopsided is announced?

Lenny Melnick (LennyMelnickFantasySports, @LennyMelnick): Ask the owner offering the stupid deal “how does this help me”? If Both teams cannot say how the deal hepls them get to playoffs or Money…Void the deal if owner cant say how it helps !!

Howard Bender (Fantasy Alarm, @RotobuzzGuy): The worse a lowball offer is, the more disgusting my counter-offer becomes. As for a lopsided trade being announced, I usually just keep my mouth shut. There ws one exception though where I reached out to the commissioner because the person in third and trying to climb made an extremely egregious trade with a disconnected owner who hadn’t made a move almost the whole year. I simply asked, “What’s up?” and the commish told me that’s just the way it is. Nothing else to do about it. You certainly don’t want to be the guy who lobbies the league for a veto.

Seth Trachtman (Rotoworld, @sethroto): I try not to take lowball offers personally. I’ll usually just promptly turn down the offer, and if the owner continues to make lowball offers, I’ll explain to the other owner why I’m turning the offers down. I have a hard time coming up with a situation where a fantasy trade offer is worth burning bridges. There’s not much you can do for lopsided trades, unless there’s collusion involved. I’d contact the commissioner in that case, but lopsided trades are just one of the realities of playing in a league that allows trades. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Jeff Zimmerman (Fangraphs, The Process, @jeffwzimmerman): Reject and move on. One owner will almost every weekend send a trade offer on a couple replacement level players. They are the players he plans on releasing when FAAB runs. As for lopsided trades, I don’t care one bit. It anything about it is too fishy, either they or myself needs to leave the league.

Michael Florio (NFL Network, @MichaelFFlorio): I may disagree with others on this, but I simply reject the offer and keep it moving. I do not think you owe it to anyone to have to make a counter-offer. If you are interested in making a deal great, but just because they want too, doesn’t mean you have too. When a trade I consider lopsided occurs, there really is not much I think that can be done. I do not believe in vetos, because most owners think selfishly and take advantage of the veto for their best interest. But unless you can prove collusion, I just think you got to leave it be. But take note of the owner involved, because you should be making that guy some offers in the future.

Scott Swanay (FantasyBaseballSherpa, @fantasy_sherpa): I used to do the passive-aggressive thing where I would respond either by countering with a more one-sided trade in my favor or the question “Why would I want to do that?” Now I’ll either respond with a quick “no thanks” or, if I see the seeds for something more mutually beneficial, a bona fide counteroffer. I try to keep the mindset that most people aren’t looking to take advantage of other owners; they just value the players involved differently than I do.

Rudy Gamble (Razzball, @RudyGamble): Most managers in your league suck as trade partners. I am sure most are good people but they either overvalue their players or want $1.20 on the dollar to feel totally confident in making a trade. So when the lowball offers come, I either politely decline or make a reasonable counter-offer that will generally be declined. Since I only play in industry leagues or no trade leagues, I do not have to worry about lowball trades. But at least 5 times a year I tell Grey to get out of his NL-only dynasty league because the trading in that league is shady as f**k (which is my nickname for a big oak tree).

Phil Hertz (BaseballHQ, @prhz50): I try to make the most of lowball offers, by treating them as opening salvos. Once I know what they’re interested in, I try to see if I can turn the offer around to my advantage by finding some gems on his offer.

Glenn Colton (Fantasy Alarm, @GlennColton1): Lowball trade offers depend on the source. If received from a league-mate known to be difficult, I just ignore them. However, if received from a straight shooter (e.g., Doug Dennis and Chris Liss always make fair offers in Tout and LABR), then you simply counter and try to get a fair deal done. As to the announcement of a lopsided trade, I often do two things: 1) write to the owner and say “hey, next time canvass the league, you might have gotten more” and 2) review team’s needs around the league to see if I am missing opportunities to get a good deal

Ron Shandler (, @RonShandler): I see two issues here: 1) What one person considers a lowball may be a fair offer from someone else. We all value players differently, sometimes VERY differently, so I always try to keep that in mind. 2) We may consider ourselves the most intelligent baseball fans and most astute evaluators of talent, but orchestrating trades is a completely different skill, and some of us are just lousy at it. Salesmanship requires an understanding of human behavior that is often foreign to pure analytical types. So if I receive what I consider a lowball offer, I try to understand who is placing the offer, and even if I perceive it as a “he’s in a rush and just threw something out,” I’ll respond with something to redirect it (after cursing under my breath for 10 minutes), without being condescending. Sometimes that gets things back on track, sometimes it doesn’t. But nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Mike Gianella (Baseball Prospectus, @MikeGianella): I usually ignore them. As Ron points out beauty (or ugliness in this case, I guess) is in the eye of the beholder, but if I think an offer is awful right out of the gate I will politely decline. My counteroffer will probably be seen as unreasonable, since the person who made the initial offer and I won’t be close on what constitutes “value”. After a lopsided trade is announced, I make a mental note about what appealed to the person who got ripped off and try to capitalize on their perception of value in the future.

Ray Flowers (Fantasy Guru Elite, @BaseballGuys): I think any offer should be considered a starting point for a discussion. I have sent out a “bad” first offer with a note saying something like ‘I’m interested in X and wondering what you would be looking for in exchange’ in order to let the other owner know I’m interested their player, but not intending the first offer to be accepted. Most of the time, I just get a no response, leading me to think that folks don’t actually read my comments they just see the offer and discount it, so be careful how you send your offers to others. It has also been my experience that when there is a disagreement, people just view the players differently. Some folks understand that and try to work around it, some folks get pissed off at it and think you to be a moron. I would also say, that if someone is willing to deal, I will always listen. You never know who they believe in or who they don’t. If you stop listening, you might be closing the door on a potential deal that you would benefit from in the end.

Jason Collette (Rotowire, @jasoncollette): I just try to keep the dialogue going most of the time. Honestly depends on my schedule. I don’t do trade reviews from my phone (too many lessons learned/burned) so I wait to get to my laptop to look into things.

Patrick Davitt (BaseballHQ, @patrickdavitt): I usually briefly explain why the deal is not a fit for me, and I leave player value out of that. I’ll take a $9 player for a $15 player if it helps me in the categories. Like others here, if I see a potential legit trade, I’ll offer it, but my experience has been that guys who throw lowballs aren’t typically interested in legit deals. They want to “win” trades.

Dr. Roto (Scout Fantasy, @DrRoto): Honestly, it gets me really angry when i get a lowball offer. I want to type back, “I’m Dr. Roto, why would I EVER do that ridiculous deal?!” Then I cool off and write back calmly, “Thanks for the offer, but it doesn’t work for me. Maybe we can deal again soon. Never burn a bridge with a trading partner if you don’t have to.

D.J. Short (Rotoworld, @djshort): It would be easy to respond back expressing anger that such an offer would be proposed, but I usually just reject and don’t give an explanation. It’s usually not worth it. As others have said, perhaps dealing with that particular owner will come in handy down the road, so there’s no need for creating bad blood. But I do take a mental note from that experience as far as player valuation. In regard to seeing lopsided trades being announced, it’s sometimes hard to grade in a vacuum since owners have different category needs and motivations. Most of the leagues I play in are very competitive and there’s no room for funny business, so I try not to be too judgy about it at this point.

Scott Wilderman (OnRoto): I’ve played with a guy who always starts with an insulting lowball offer — but I know it’s business, not personal. If I’m at all interested in any of the players proposed, I’ll counter with a deal equally lopsided in my favor — it’s important that ‘fair and reasonable’ be mid-way between the two starting points, or you can get sucked into subconsciously thinking the other guy moved more than you did during the bargaining.

Zach Steinhorn (CreativeSports, @zachsteinhorn): I get annoyed by lowball trade offers, especially when the owner doesn’t include a message explaining why the trade could make sense for both of us. If there isn’t an accompanying note, I’ll usually just reject the offer without countering and would be hesitant to spend any more time dealing with that owner in the future. If there is a message, it shows that there was actually some thought put into the offer and if I’m interested in any of his/her players, I’ll see if we can work something out. Lopsided trades bother me as well but I rarely publicly question them, especially in industry leagues where I have a lot of respect for the knowledge of my peers and trust that there was no collusion.

AJ Mass (ESPN, @AJMass): If you’re going to allow trading in your league, you have to allow trading. So, when one manager makes a deal where it appears he’s gotten fleeced by another, so be it. As long as it’s not a case of clear collusion, who’s to say it won’t be the “fleeced guy” laughing at the end of the season. As for getting a lowball offer — “You have Mike Trout. I have Jeff Erickson’s autograph. Let’s deal.” — just respond “No thanks” and move on. So long as it doesn’t become a daily nuisance — “What if I throw in a Todd Zola selfie?” — then you just let it go.

Andy Behrens (Yahoo! Fantasy Sports, @andybehrens): If an offer made to me isn’t a reasonable conversation starter, I’ll reject without counter or comment. I’m not going to any effort in a trade conversation if the other party won’t put anything interesting on the table. As for lopsided deals in my leagues, I really only care about deals that seem obviously collusive. I’m fine with the idea that deals are going to have perceived winners and losers. Sometimes a fantasy manager actually has to take a small loss on a trade in order to address an area of need. As long as both parties in a deal are acting in good faith, I won’t complain.

Al Melchior (The Athletic, @almelchiorbb): If I get a lowball offer, I usually decline without comment. I may look at the roster to see if there is a reasonable counteroffer I can make that would fill a need for me. As for lopsided deals in my leagues, I rarely do more than take note of it and file it away for future reference.

Mike Podhorzer (Fangraphs, @MikePodhorzer): I reject the offer without comment, but realize that I have now learned which player(s) this owner is looking to trade for. At the very least, I will then look at his team to see if I should make a counter offer involving the player(s) originally asked for. When a lopsided trade is announced, it’s frustrating. There’s nothing that can be done, but at least you’ve spotted the sucker! So I become a little more aggressive trying to trade with that owner, hoping I will be the next beneficiary of his poor player evaluation skills.

Jeff Boggis (Fantasy Football Empire, @JeffBoggis): I find lowball trades insulting. I typically leave the comment of “I could not hit the reject trade button fast enough” on the trade request. I then maycounter with my own lowball trade offer, just to emphasize my point. I love trade negotiations, but don’t waste my time with trades that do nothing to benefit both teams.

Todd Zola (Mastersball, @toddzola): Note to Ron – I’m sitting right here. Jokes aside, I’m up front concerning my trouble with negotiating. It’s irrational, but saying “yes” to someone normally requires saying “no” to several and that’s tough for me. In general, I think there’s a fine line between considering an offer insulting and taking it personally. It’s fine to consider an offer insulting, that’s just the way some operate. The key is not taking it personally. You’re not the only one getting offers of that nature. Everyone in the league is. If you were the only one, it would be personal. Some just believe in a lowball opening salvo, then negotiating an equitable deal. In this instance, I may pursue talks if I sense something can be worked out. Some start low because they think they are supposed to and others aren’t confident enough to start with something on a more even keel. In these cases, I try to figure out who it is they want from me (it’s usually apparent) and counter with something more reasonable.

Tout Wars Free Agency Bidding Recap – Sunday, June 9

Following is the latest weekly report summarizing the top free agent bids in each of the five Tout Wars leagues, with links to the detailed bidding action following our 8 p.m. ET deadline each Sunday evening. All prices are on a $1000 base.

After you scan the detail below, please join our live chat, starting at 9 p.m. ET Sunday evening, to discuss these results with Todd Zola of Mastersball and other Touts.


Mike Podhorzer was the high bidder this week, dropping $77 on Mac Williamson. The oft-injured slugger was released by the Giants after coming up short in his latest audition. Williamson is a disciple of the launch angle revolution, but injuries and failure to make consistent contact have interrupted his opportunities to demonstrate if it he’ll join those displaying an increase in power. Williamson should see decent playing time with Mitch Haniger on the shelf.

The next highest bid came courtesy of Glenn Colton and Rock Wolf as they needed an arm to replace Domingo German. The dynamic duo snagged Brandon Workman for 27 units. The Red Sox don’t have a traditional closer with Workman curving his way into some saves.

The only other double digit bids were offered by league leader Jason Collette who dropped $16 on Tommy Milone and Colton/Wolf who doubled down on save speculation with $12 on Miguel Castro.

Review all 6/9 AL bids here.


Quiet week in the Senior Circuit with only six purchases. The top bid was a $75 expenditure on Kevin Cron. The corner infielder could be in line for more playing time after going deep twice this weekend.

Lenny Melnick decided $23 was a fair price for Drew Pomeranz. The veteran lefty is coming off his best start of the season, holding the potent Dodgers scoreless over five frames, fanning seven with just one walk.

Review all 6/9 NL bids here.


Scott Swanay hopes to fortify his lead adding Colin Moran for $57. Moran should continue to see regular time at the hot corner as Cole Tucker was sent back to the farm, clearing shortstop for the recently returning Jung Ho Kang.

The second highest winning bid was $53, submitted by Zack Steinhorn on Lourdes Gurriel Jr. The utility man has been playing a lot of left field lately, slashing a robust .314/.364/.667 since being recalled May 23.

Starting pitching dominated the rest of the bidding with Adrian Sampson, Freddy Peralta, Anibal Sanchez, Framber Valdez, Jalen Beeks, Michael Wacha, Jon Duplantier and Jason Vargas all finding new homes.

Review all 6/9 Mixed Auction bids here.


D.J. Short was the big spender, topping the bidding with $70 on Framber Valdez. Valdez is needed with Corbin Martin sent back to Triple-A for more seasoning.

Perry Van Hook was next, offering $43 for Jerad Eickhoff. Van Hook also took a $13 shot on Rockies rookie Peter Lambert.

Adam Ronis hoped to upgrade his pitching with a $34 bid on Ryan Yarbrough. Last season’s primary beneficiary of following an opener, Yarbrough seems to have regained his form after a time-out in Triple-A. Ronis also snagged Anthony Desclafani for $23 as he needs to replace Carlos Carrasco and Matt Strahm.

Review all 6/9 Mixed Draft bids here.


Ian Kahn took advantage of James Paxton’s availability, besting two other triple-digit bids with a healthy $276 purchase. The losing bids were $237 and $188.

Clay Link aims to fortify his lead with a $57 buy of Zach Plesac while Ryan Bloomfield hopes the recent surge from Brian Dozier if is a harbinger of things to come.

Review all 6/9 Head to Head bids here.

Tout Daily Picks: A Thor Spot

Here’s the picks the Touts are counting on in tonight’s Tout Daily DFS Contest.

Todd Zola (Mastersball, @toddzola)

Pitcher: Masahiro Tanaka – This feels like a trap game and goes against my preference of using DFS pitchers at home, so I’ll likely hedge it in a different contest.

Hitter: Braden Bishop – Platoon edge on Wade Miley, leaging off, essentially a free square.

Jeff Boggis (Fantasy Football Empire, @JeffBoggis)

Pitcher: Noah Syndergaard – Even the Marvel Comics character Thor was once stripped of his powers, but managed to regain his strength and glory. I see the same for the Mets equivalent in Noah “Thor” Syndergaard tonight aginst a weak San Francisco Giants hitting team. He’s priced moderately cheap at $9,600 and has extra incentive tonight as he opposes Madison Bumgarner. Here is to Thor raising the hammer tonight.

Hitter: Christian Yelich – Yelich let me down last week with a late scratch, so he owe’s me one. He has 4 home runs in his past 10 games. He’s not cheap at $5,900, but worth the investment at home against Miami’s Pablo Lopez.

Howard Bender (Fantasy Alarm, @RotobuzzGuy)

Pitcher: Blake Snell – If you’re going to pay up for pitching, I’ll take Snell against a Tigers team that struggles a bunch against left-handed pitching and are striking out over 26% of the time against them.

Hitter: Ramon Laureano – A modest bargain on DK, but a great value on FD. He’s on a 15-game hit streak with eight doubles, two home runs, four RBI, six runs scored and a stolen base.

Anthony Aniano (Rotoballer, @AAnianoFantasy)

Pitcher: Noah Syndergaard – For $9,600 I have a pitcher who strikes out 1 out of every 4 batters he faces and the Giants strike out just under 9 times per game. The Giants are 27th in runs per game and 28th in OPS. Advantage Syndergaard.

Hitter: Austin Riley – 8 homers, 22 RBIs and an OPS of 1.083 for $4,900 and he faces Brault, a lefty, this evening in Pittsburgh. Versus lefties Riley has 7 hits in 18 ABs including 5 home runs. He’s a must play.

Gene McCaffrey (The Athletic, @WiseGuyGene)

Pitcher: Noah Syndergaard – If he’s ever going to dominate it’s at home against the Giants – and I bet the Mets let him pitch close to a, whaddya call it, complete game.

Hitter: Manny Machado – Looks like he’s heating up, have to take the chance at $3800.

Tim Heaney (Rotowire, ESPN, @TeamHeaney)

Pitcher: Chris Paddack – The Phillies’ lineup looks slightly less daunting without Andrew McCutchen (knee), and Paddack is nails at home with a 1.42 ERA.

Hitter: Elias Diaz – A catcher batting fifth is typically a value I’d chase, especially at $3,500, and Diaz’s career .344 wOBA versus southpaws typically makes him a near instant click in those matchups.

Michael Florio (NFL Network, @MichaelFFlorio)

Pitcher: Blake Snell – Blake Snell is the biggest favorite on the slate, plus he is facing a Tigers team that has the sixth highest strikeout rate against lefties (26.4%) and rank 22nd in terms of wOBA (.305) against south paws. You have to pay, but it is wise to pay up for Snell tonight.

Hitter: Ronald Acuna – Acuna is leading off for the Braves agaist lefty Steven Brault. Acuna has hit .302 with a .340 ISO against lefties, plus Brault has been anything but intimidating this season. At only $4,500, Acuna feels like a great value here.

Steve Gardner (USAToday Fantasy Sports, @SteveAGardner)

Pitcher: Max Fried – So many good pitchers on the slate tonight, you can’t help but pick a couple good ones. I’ll go with Fried at a relatively paltry $7800 vs. a Pirates lineup without Josh Bell and Gregory Polanco.

Hitter: Manny Machado – At $3800? This must be a misprint.

Jeff Erickson (Rotowire, @Jeff_Erickson)

Pitcher: Eduardo Rodriguez – Looking to pay down to afford some better bats. E-Rod has produced around 20 DK points in four of his last starts.

Hitter: All the Houston – Astros as much as possible against the worst starter on the board.