Fantasy Baseball Insider Trading: Matt Joyce, Gaby Sanchez

Full story as published 5/19/11 on

By Rich Arleo

Some batters and pitchers on the other teams in your fantasy baseball league are becoming real drags. A few MLB players on your fantasy baseball team are performing better than you expected. Is it time to move in?’s Fantasy Baseball Insider Trading series is your accomplice when it’s time to do shady business in your rotisserie or head-to-head baseball game.


Matt Joyce, Tampa Bay Rays

Has the 26-year-old finally found the sweet stroke many have been waiting for the past few years? Joyce is raking to the tune of a .365 average and .434 OBP with 26 runs, seven home runs and 21 RBIs.

Taking a look at Joyce’s minor league stats, in 519 games played he hit just .275. He had decent power numbers, but the average was never anything special, although he had a nice OBP of .362. He should hit for some decent power, but the pace that Joyce is on seems unsustainable, especially since his contact rate is hovering around 77 percent.

Florida Marlins 1B Gaby Sanchez
Sanchez has shown this before

Also, owners can’t forget the injury concerns with Joyce. He suffered through elbow issues last year and had a calf strain suffered prior to the start of 2009 that lingered, plus occasional back pain. He has been healthy thus far, but the injury concerns are certainly there.

Joyce’s bat has been somewhat highly regarded since his days with the Detroit Tigers, so there are plenty of owners who think this could finally be the year. It certainly could be, but if you find one of them and can get a safer, quality option in return, it may be worthwhile.


Gaby Sanchez, Florida Marlins

After a solid rookie season, the 27-year-old first baseman has become a must-start in all leagues, with a .325 average, a .406 OBP, seven home runs, 25 runs and 26 RBIs.

One big criticism of Sanchez is that he doesn’t have the power you expect from the first base position, but with seven home runs already, he’s on pace to hit more than 25. He’s being more selective at the plate, walking at a higher rate (11.7 percent) and an improved BB/K ratio of 0.81. His swing percentage at balls outside the strike zone is at 27.6, down from 34.8 percent last year.

Sanchez is hitting fourth in a decent Florida lineup, which means plenty of opportunities to drive in and score runs, especially once the struggling Hanley Ramirez figures things out at the plate. While his average on balls in play (.352) will certainly begin to normalize, his strong foundation should soften the ball. His HR/RB percentage (13.7) isn’t outrageous to predict a massive fall-off.

With Sanchez, it looks like a case of a player avoiding a sophomore slump. The signs are showing that in the majors he’s become the more patient, selective hitter he was in the minors, and it’s paying off. Unless you find Sanchez’s No. 1 fan, who’s willing to pay a respectable price for him, and not a skeptic who projects him to become James Loney, keep him and enjoy what should continue to be a breakout season.

– See more at:–Matt-Joyce–Gaby-Sanchez#sthash.flIlUpge.dpuf


Published by

Rich Arleo

I am an Editorial Producer with Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) and a freelance writer and editor currently living the dream with the love of my life. After graduating from Marist College in 2010 with a Bachelor’s of Arts in Communications, I joined as a freelance sports writer and began writing fantasy football advice for Bruno Boys Fantasy Football. After a few months driving all around Long Island covering high school sporting events with Patch, I earned a full-time position with the company as a Local Editor. I spent a year in Brooklyn, which opened up whole new world to me. I had the pleasure of meeting and writing about so many amazing people during my time with Patch both on Long Island and in Brooklyn. I will always appreciate having the privilege to cover major news events such as Hurricane Sandy, the 2013 blizzard on Long Island, Tropical Storm Irene and the NYC mayoral race, among others, and am looking forward to covering many more. I am currently an Editorial Producer with Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM), and my freelance writing has been published in the 2014 USA Today Fantasy Football Magazine and other USA Today publications, and also on,,,,,,, and a number of other blogs and publications. Writing and sports have always been my two passions, and I am grateful every day that I have turned these into a career. You could say my biggest love of all is sports. I can talk sports — all sports — with anyone and have a blast doing it. I grew up a diehard Yankees, Jets, Knicks and Islanders fan, and I watch and analyze as many games as I can … win or lose. Please feel free to contact me at any time. I hope you enjoy my work and also my blog, which I hope to update with random musings from time to time.

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