Tout Wars FAAB Report: Week of March 26

Welcome to the first Tout Wars FAAB report of the 2018 season, on it’s new home right here on the Tout Wars site. Each week, we’ll review the free agent acquisitions from all five leagues, with commentary from a league member, as well as yours truly. We changed the timing of the weekly run to 1 PM ET every Sunday, with the report posted later that afternoon so you’ll have time to digest and apply to your own leagues. In addition, I’ll be joining Lawr Michaels and Justin Mason on the Tout Wars Hour on the FNTSY Network every Sunday at 3:30 PM ET to discuss the results.

Before revealing the results if this week’s run, I’d like to do what I did with the LABR report and recognize our late friend and Tout Wars veteran Steve Moyer, who once hosted the auctions in his basement. Steve shockingly left us on March 1 as we was about to meet up with the LABR gang at a ballgame. Steve’s team in the American League auction was taken over by his good friend Doug Dennis, a Mixed Tout Wars veteran. Doug wrote a heartfelt tribute to Steve, please check it out as well as considering a donation to help Harmony and Mary, Steve’s daughters.

This week’s report is a little late, we’ll be back on schedule this Sunday. There are five leagues, you can find the complete list of Tout Warriors here. Everyone starts with 1000 FAAB units, less any penalty incurred by finishing below a designated point in the standings. This is a means of keeping everyone motivated to keep playing all season long. The minimum bid is $0. FAAB units can be traded as well as rebated for players released off the DL.

The report will list all winning bids along with unsuccessful tries and contingencies. This provides the maximum level of information to help gauge interest on the players.

The American and National League only formats are 12-team leagues, as is the new points-based head to head league, The Mixed Auction and Draft each have 15 clubs. All the leagues have four reserves with an unlimited DL, expect the head to head league, which allows six reserves.

The headings above each league are links to publicly accessible sites where you can see standings, roster and a complete review of transactions. The initial auctions and drafts can be found here.



TCahill, Oak Vlad Sedler 37 Seth Trachtman 5
DanNorris, Det Seth Trachtman 35 Lawr Michaels 10 Larry Schechter 0
VReyes, Det Chris Liss 25
EAdrianza, Min Vlad Sedler 19 Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0 Patrick Davitt 0
ONarvaez, CWS Lawr Michaels 15
TLincecum, Tex Chris Liss 14
BBichette, Tor Chris Liss 9
HRondon, Hou Lawr Michaels 5 Vlad Sedler 4 Seth Trachtman 0
RTorreyes, NYY Rob Leibowitz 4
BFarmer, Det Jason Collette 3
HIwakuma, Sea Chris Liss 2
RRua, Tex Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0 Patrick Davitt 0
ISuzuki, Sea Patrick Davitt 0
RTepera, Tor Larry Schechter 0
NVincent, Sea Seth Trachtman 0 Chris Liss 1


MCanha, Oak Chris Liss 20
BHolt, Bos Chris Liss 8
PAlvarez, Bal Chris Liss 8
CFrazier, NYY Chris Liss 5
CarSmith, Bos Chris Liss 3 Larry Schechter 0
NGoody, Cle Vlad Sedler 2 Lawr Michaels 1
JHoyt, Hou Vlad Sedler 2
DEspinosa, Tor Chris Liss 1 Chris Liss 0
JKelly, Bos Chris Liss 1 Chris Liss 0
TMotter, Sea Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0 Patrick Davitt 0
SLeon, Bos Chris Liss 0 Lawr Michaels 0
CFulmer, CWS Chris Liss 0
RBuchter, Oak Larry Schechter 0
ARomine, NYY Lawr Michaels 0
EAybar, FA Patrick Davitt 0
APresley, Bal Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
TNaquin, Cle Rick Wolf/Glenn Colton 0
HSantiago, CWS Seth Trachtman 0
SRomo, TB Seth Trachtman 0

This week’s commentary is courtesy of Doug Dennis from BaseballHQ. Follow Doug on Twitter at @DougDennis41

I did not place any bids on the first period as I am waiting on the off-chance that Melky Cabrera signs in the AL and was not overwhelmed by the desire to fight for Ronald Torreyes or Brock Holt.

Vlad Sedler snagged Trevor Cahill for $37 as the top buy this first period, and cut David Paulino. Cahill had a terrific April/May last season starting for Arizona before shoulder woes sent him spiraling. He has shown with the Cubs before that that he can be a very effective LH reliever as well. I’d expect Cahill to take 2 starts in the minors and if all goes ok, then jump into Oakland’s rotation. Vlad has a middle-of-the-road starter in a nice pitcher’s park for a modest buy unless something isn’t right, and we will know that soon enough from his minor league starts going in. Other bids on Cahill were $10 and $0 and no one else bid at all.

Seth Trachtman went $35 for Daniel Norris and reserved Nick Tropeano. I might rather have a middle reliever than Norris at this point. Norris has never really progressed as advertised and the Tigers lineup and pen do not offer much support. projects Norris for a 4.72 ERA at the moment. That sounds about right and I think I’d have found a nice, safe ERA/WHIP reliever until some starter struck my fancy. But maybe Seth will catch lightning in a bottle. It was a modest cost in any event. Other bids on Norris were $5 and $5 and no one else bid.

Other purchases were tiny numbers — I am struck by how weak the offense buys were. This reinforces the idea that it is very hard to find worthwhile buys in an AL-only league to replace DL or minors hitters in the early going. Hitters may emerge down the line, but this first transactions period was quite dire.

Todd’s Take

With only four days this period, this is the perfect opportunity to grab and stash some under-the-radar players and non-drafted prospects from the St. Patrick’s Day auction. Instead of collecting dust for a week, they only have to stay on the active roster for the abbreviated week.

As he often does, Rotowire’s Chris Liss took advantage, snagging Rule 5 fly-chaser Victor Reyes, Tim Lincecum, Bo Bichette and Hisashi Iwakuma. Interestingly, the narrative for each is different. Reyes has to stay in the roster all season, or be returned to the D-backs. The Tigers are rebuilding and may opt to give the solid contact speedster a look. Bichette is a dart throw, hoping he bashes his way onto the Jays, Lincecum is a speculative shot at saves while Iwakuma is expected to return later in the season, offering veteran innings.



SVanSlyke, Mia Scott Wilderman 104
PErvin, Cin Scott Wilderman 103 Tristan H. Cockcroft 7
BFinnegan, Cin Grey Albright 86 Andy Behrens 13 Phil Hertz 3
PTucker, Atl Todd Zola 77 Scott Wilderman 72 Andy Behrens 46
Tristan H. Cockcroft 12 Grey Albright 11
YMunoz, StL Craig Mish 67 Grey Albright 31 Tristan H. Cockcroft 25
CUtley, LAD Derek Carty 42 Scott Wilderman 61 Tristan H. Cockcroft 12
Mike Gianella 2
ACole, Was Tristan H. Cockcroft 25 Grey Albright 13 Phil Hertz 0
TBlach, SF Phil Hertz 14 Tristan H. Cockcroft 25
TCingrani, LAD Steve Gardner 12
DDescalso, Ari Steve Gardner 11 Tristan H. Cockcroft 5 Mike Gianella 0
Derek Carty 0
RRuiz, Atl Mike Gianella 10 Tristan H. Cockcroft 9 Grey Albright 5
JParker, SF Tristan H. Cockcroft 5
MRojas, Mia Tristan H. Cockcroft 4 Mike Gianella 2 Tristan H. Cockcroft 1
WFont, LAD Derek Carty 3 Steve Gardner 8
KMakita, SD Andy Behrens 2
TWolters, Col Grey Albright 1
KTomlinson, SF Mike Gianella 0 Tristan H. Cockcroft 1 Derek Carty 0
JBlevins, NYM Derek Carty 0


GBlanco, SF Scott Wilderman 31
MMayers, StL Grey Albright 31
PMaton, SD Grey Albright 13 Phil Hertz 0
TBeede, SF Grey Albright 13
CPennington, Cin Scott Wilderman 11 Mike Gianella 0
MSzczur, SD Scott Wilderman 11
JBrebbia, StL Steve Gardner 10
SBrault, Pit Steve Gardner 8
CBettis, Col Steve Gardner 7
JMcGee, Col Steve Gardner 5
DHolland, SF Tristan H. Cockcroft 4
KFreeland, Col Tristan H. Cockcroft 4
AniSanchez, Atl Phil Hertz 3
JWilson, ChC Tristan H. Cockcroft 1 Phil Hertz 0 Derek Carty 0
SAlexander, LAD Grey Albright 1 Phil Hertz 0 Derek Carty 0
JHellickson, Was Tristan H. Cockcroft 1 Grey Albright 1 Phil Hertz 0
AEllis, SD Grey Albright 1
JMathis, Ari Grey Albright 1
PBaez, LAD Grey Albright 1
SMiller, Ari Tristan H. Cockcroft 1
TTelis, Mia Tristan H. Cockcroft 1
VCaratini, ChC Tristan H. Cockcroft 1
WChen, Mia Tristan H. Cockcroft 1
CRusin, Col Steve Gardner 0
AnSuarez, SF Phil Hertz 0
JNicolino, Mia Phil Hertz 0
JTurner, Mia Phil Hertz 0
ODespaigne, Mia Phil Hertz 0
RGsellman, NYM Phil Hertz 0
COGrady, Mia Derek Carty 0
MFeliz, Pit Derek Carty 0

This week’s commentary is a two-parter, first Phil Hertz from Baseball HQ. Follow Phil on Twitter at @prhz50

I listed a string of pitchers to replace the now-demoted Robert Stephenson. I came out of the NL-only draft with only two solid starters: Stephen Strasburg and Zack Greinke, winding up with Ty Blach, who is now likely to be part of the San Francisco rotation with both MadBum and Shark headed to the DL. Blach was my’ first choice, but then there weren’t a plethora of starting pitching options available.

Now a note from defending league champion, Grey Albright from Razzball.

Won Brandon Finnegan for $86, though I guess I could’ve bid $14 on him and still won him. C’est la vie, as they say in France. Fantasy Baseball is very popular in France, by the way. They’re still bidding on Jeff Francoeur there. Anyway! I lost Jeff Samardzija to a pectoral strain, so I needed a starter. Brandon Finnegan sustained a biceps strain early on in Spring Training, but is progressing well in his rehab. Hopefully, him or Samardzija return to give me 120+ innings, anything over that at this point would be icing.

Todd’s Take

It was a little surprising to see Scott Wilderman, proprietor of our host site, OnRoto open the wallet on a couple of marginal players, especially since he nearly caught me a couple years ago (pardon the #humblebrag) by picking up serious reinforcements at the MLB trade deadline.

It’s early, but effort not to finish in 11th like last season is off to a lucky start before a pitch has been thrown. Not liking any of the end-game middle infielders, I dropped $7 on Scott Kingery, expecting him to sit on reserve for awhile. He obviously made the team, joining fellow Phillies Cesar Hernandez, Maikel Franco and Aaron Altherr on my squad. Collecting so many Phillies was not by design, though acquiring Kingery as a Hernandez hedge was part of the consideration. Even if all my other Phillies lose time, I think I still benefit from Kingery’s early arrival.

In addition, my $4 Brad Boxberger is now the Dbacks closer, though it remains to be seen for how long.

On the other hand, my $6 David Dahl gambit didn’t come through, though I suspect I’ll get my money’s worth by season’s end. To replace the Rockies outfielder, I dropped $77 on Preston Tucker, expected to play a lot while the Braves pretend Ronald Acuna needs more time on the farm. If he doesn’t anything at all, Tucker could push Nick Markakis for playing time. With my poor 2017 finish came a big FAAB reduction penalty, so I’ll be aggressive early since I can’t be a player at the MLB trade deadline.



EEscobar, Min Jeff Zimmerman 46 Derek VanRiper 11
SRomano, Cin Al Melchior 42
JLowrie, Oak Bret Sayre 37 Scott Pianowski 3
DVogelbach, Sea Bret Sayre 27
YHirano, Ari Tim Heaney 26
NKarns, KC Zach Steinhorn 22 Scott Swanay 13
ARamos, NYM Bret Sayre 18
CSpangenberg, SD Ron Shandler 18
VVelasquez, Phi Scott Swanay 13
KGraveman, Oak Fred Zinkie 7
TWilliams, Pit Derek VanRiper 0
DDietrich, Mia Scott Pianowski 0
FCervelli, Pit Scott Engel 0
JEickhoff, Phi Scott Swanay 0


AMondesi, KC Jeff Zimmerman 42
ACashner, Bal Al Melchior 23
MGonzales, Sea Al Melchior 21
IKennedy, KC Zach Steinhorn 18
LChisenhall, Cle Ron Shandler 18
NMarkakis, Atl Ron Shandler 12
AJackson, SF Ron Shandler 5
GParra, Col Ron Shandler 5
CRasmus, Bal Ron Shandler 1
HRenfroe, SD Ron Shandler 1
AGarrett, Cin Tim Heaney 0
DanNorris, Det Tim Heaney 0
JoeSmith, Hou Scott Swanay 0
LPerdomo, SD Tim Heaney 0
MBoyd, Det Tim Heaney 0
ODespaigne, Mia Al Melchior 0
PNeshek, Phi Scott Swanay 0
TKahnle, NYY Scott Swanay 0
TMahle, Cin Tim Heaney 0
TomHunter, Phi Scott Swanay 0
TRoss, SD Scott Swanay 0
YPetit, Oak Al Melchior 0

This week’s commentary is courtesy of Scott Swanay. Follow Scott on Twitter at @fantasy_sherpa

The first FAAB bids of the season were processed this past Sunday, but with the Tout Mixed League auction having taken place just one week prior, and most likely early-season call-ups already on Tout rosters, there wasn’t much interest or activity on the part of team owners.
I assumed that the highest bids this week would come from owners who had unexpectedly lost players since the auction.  This group included Tim Heaney (Madison Bumgarner), Brett Sayre (Justin Turner), Fred Zinkie (Steven Souza and Jeff Samardzija), Scott Engel (J.T. Realmuto), and Scott Pianowski (Jorge Polanco).  However, the two highest winning bids were defending champion Jeff Zimmerman’s $46 for Eduardo Escobar (to replace the injured Daniel Murphy), and Al Melchior’s $42 for Sal Romano (to replace either Dan Straily or Luiz Gohara).
As for the presumed high bidders, Tim Heaney opted to replace Bumgarner with a middle reliever (Yoshihisa Hirano for $26), Brett Sayre spent $37 for Jed Lowrie, Fred Zinkie spent $7 for Kendall Graveman, Scott Pianowski didn’t have to spend anything for Derek Dietrich, and Scott Engel got Francisco Cervelli for free.
Fortunately, my roster wasn’t hit by either the injury or suspension bugs in the week after the auction, but having purchased Drew Pomeranz in the auction and drafted Carlos Rodon in the reserve round, I had a couple of DL-bound pitchers I could replace.  I toyed with the idea of adding a couple of middle relievers in hopes of starting the season with some ratio help, but with a maximum of only four opening week games, I opted instead to seek some starting pitching depth.  I was hoping to land Kansas City’s Nate Karns, who has struck out over a batter an inning in Spring Training, albeit with his historical control issues.  However, 2016 champion Zach Steinhorn also had Karns in his sites and was willing to spend $22, which was $9 more than the bid I’d entered.
I settled instead for a pair of Phillies’ hurlers – Vince Velasquez and the DL-bound Jerad Eickhoff, whom I can move to the DL this coming Sunday.  Given that this is the 25th anniversary of Philadelphia’s 1993 NL championship team, I’m dreaming that Velasquez and Eickhoff will be the 2018 version of Curt Schilling and Tommy Greene.  That’s probably way too much to hope for, but I’ll settle for having either of them pitch more like they did in 2016 than they did in 2017.

Todd’s Take

Nothing personal gents, but I hope you’re all wrong. I’ve been on the Reds Tyler Mahle all drafting season. I won’t tell you how many rosters I have him on, but you’ll need your toes to keep track. He’s not a difference-maker by any means. However, he’s healthy, surrounded by a bunch of not-so-healthy teammates. The Great American Ballpark may be generous to power, but it plays just a little above neutral for runs, so if Mahle can keep the ball in the yard, he’ll be fine. I’d take him over all six starters won in FAAB. But, then, if I was in this league, he wouldn’t have been available.



BMcCarthy, Atl Scott White 37 Adam Ronis 4
TMahle, Cin Ray Murphy 17 Adam Ronis 8
JPanik, SF Rudy Gamble 17 Jeff Boggis 6
MGonzales, Sea Adam Ronis 12 Perry Van Hook 5 Charlie Wiegert 4
CMoran, Pit D.J. Short 11
VMartinez, Det Perry Van Hook 11 Adam Ronis 4
AGarrett, Cin Adam Ronis 8
EEscobar, Min Adam Ronis 8 Rudy Gamble 37
TBlach, SF Perry Van Hook 6
AWainwright, StL Charlie Wiegert 5
MMaldonado, LAA Rudy Gamble 3


LForsythe, LAD Rudy Gamble 17 D.J. Short 10 Adam Ronis 8
Perry Van Hook 2
MMahtook, Det Perry Van Hook 7 Adam Ronis 2
CGranderson, Tor Perry Van Hook 7
JTomlin, Cle Ray Murphy 6
BAnderson, Mia Perry Van Hook 5
DDietrich, Mia Perry Van Hook 5
MBoyd, Det Adam Ronis 4
MGivens, Bal Adam Ronis 4
NEovaldi, TB Adam Ronis 4
NKarns, KC Adam Ronis 4
TRoss, SD Perry Van Hook 3
JGarcia, Tor Perry Van Hook 3
KMiddleton, LAA Perry Van Hook 3
YGomes, Cle Rudy Gamble 3
JIglesias, Det Rudy Gamble 3
JMercer, Pit Rudy Gamble 3
ADiaz, Tor Rudy Gamble 3
DMengden, Oak Adam Ronis 2
MDavidson, CWS Perry Van Hook 2
CMcHugh, Hou Adam Ronis 1
MMontgomery, ChC Adam Ronis 1
THernandez, Tor Adam Ronis 1
BNimmo, NYM Charlie Wiegert 1
CTocci, Tex Charlie Wiegert 1
CUtley, LAD Charlie Wiegert 1
DVogelbach, Sea Charlie Wiegert 1
EHernandez, LAD Charlie Wiegert 1
JDiekman, Tex Charlie Wiegert 1
JZimmermann, Det Charlie Wiegert 1
MJoyce, Oak Charlie Wiegert 1
SDuggar, SF Charlie Wiegert 1
STuivailala, StL Charlie Wiegert 1
TomMurphy, Col Rudy Gamble 1

This week’s commentary is from Perry Van Hook

While the Tout mixed draft league is less than three weeks from the draft, several teams have lost players to injury or suspension already, so a FAAB run before the first half week was some relief. Not that you are going to get a player better than Justin Turner or Madison Bumgarner, but at least you could get some lineup options.

The highest bid amongst the eight owners who made bids was $37 for Atlanta SP Brandon McCarthy by Scott White.

As the Justin Turner owner I saw several hitters who could fill my UT slot after some internal moves but thought the revitalized Victor Martinez was the best hitting so he topped my list at $11 and that was enough to roster him. I also wanted another pitcher as many starters would not have a start in the first three or four games. I am not sure my choice was the best, but Giants’ starter Ty Blach has had very good outing against the Dodgers who he will face in the opener on Thursday, and I don’t own any shares of Clayton Kershaw so I might as well double down on rooting against him.

Todd’s Take

Thank you Ray Murphy, at least someone sees what I see in Mahle.

Brandon McCarthy is a great Twitter follow, and a pretty good pitcher between injuries. He’s looked great so far this spring, offering solid inning and the proverbial veteran leadership to a fledgling Braves staff. Ride the guy while he’s healthy.



MHarvey, NYM Howard Bender 62
INova, Pit Clay Link 53 Peter Kreutzer 6 Stephania Bell 1
GParra, Col Howard Bender 52
ARussell, ChC Michael Rathburn 50
LMorrison, Min Peter Kreutzer 42
TWilliams, Pit Peter Kreutzer 3
TDArnaud, NYM Justin Mason 2


AClaudio, Tex Howard Bender 52
DSwanson, Atl Michael Rathburn 50
KPillar, Tor Howard Bender 42
COwings, Ari Howard Bender 42
FRodney, Min Howard Bender 42
BMcCarthy, Atl Clay Link 34
HRyu, LAD Clay Link 33
NWilliams, Phi Howard Bender 32
CKuhl, Pit Howard Bender 32
TMahle, Cin Clay Link 31
JWinker, Cin Howard Bender 22
DSteckenrider, Mia Howard Bender 22
JLowrie, Oak Peter Kreutzer 13
CMcHugh, Hou Clay Link 2
JCastro, Min Justin Mason 1
NMarkakis, Atl Peter Kreutzer 0

This week’s commentary is courtesy of Rotowire’s Clay Link. Follow Clay on Twitter at @claywlink

I had been holding out hope that Eduardo Rodriguez would be cleared to start the fourth game of the season, but he was not, and thus I was forced to dip into the free-agent pool for a replacement starter.

There were several capable arms available, and I went back and forth with my preferences and bid amounts, but ultimately settled on Ivan Nova being the most attractive option.

Innings are the most valuable commodity in this league, with each out being worth a point, and Nova nearly got to 190 last year while posting the fourth-lowest BB/9 among qualified starters. The first of his two starts over the first week comes against the Tigers, which seems like a decent matchup. The volume will be key right away, as I lost Dinelson Lamet hours after FAAB ran and I do not have a healthy replacement on my bench.

Sandy Alcantara was the obvious drop. I took a shot thinking he might break camp in the rotation, but that did not happen, and he’s not worth stashing in this 12-team league.

Count me among those skeptical that Matt Harvey’s spring means anything, but in this format that pushes up starting pitching so much, I can see why Howard Bender took the flier.

The other pickup that caught my eye was Nova’s teammate, Trevor Williams, at $3 to Peter Kreutzer. That second start for him over the first week-plus comes at home against the Reds, while Nova’s is home against the Twins. It’s a better matchup, and I could see Williams putting up a similar point total in the first week, at a lower cost.

Todd’s Take

There’s two kind of people. One is skeptical Matt Harvey can be a viable MLB starter and those delusional. I hope I’m wrong and my bud Howard Bender rubs egg on my face since a healthy Harvey is good for baseball, but the track record of those returning from thoracic outlet surgery just isn’t that good, though it does improve the further removed from the procedure so like Clay, I can see why the RotoBuzzGuy channeled Lloyd Christmas – hoping there’s a chance.