Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Daniel Murphy to the Rockies - Fantasy Implications


Rockies fans watched a 2018 team that disappointed on offense and the front office might have just made the key addition to fix some of those headaches. Second baseman Daniel Murphy will be joining the Rockies on a two-year deal and should offer an exciting upside bat, with a glove that might not play all that well in the field anymore. This is the good news, whereas the bad news means that some of the young potential stars for the Colorado franchise might have to wait a bit longer, or could be on their way out of town. For fantasy owners, this might be one of the more impactful moves so far this winter and offers an exciting option for players in all formats.

Whatever the case for the Rockies, the need was clear, and this all but signals that DJ LeMahieu will be leaving town to sign elsewhere. With a weak second base pool in general, Murphy adds some value with this move based on the park factors alone. Not surprisingly, Coors Fields sat second, according to ESPN, with 1.271 run factor, and a 1.280 home run factor. Both of these numbers help whoever plays there, and with an elite bat like Murphy, should offer a nice boon for fantasy owners. While every player gets that jump for fantasy rankings, when Murphy grades out as one of the best contact hitters in the game, the gains are even more pronounced.

While questions still exist around the Rockies roster, the obvious impacts are to help an ailing offense. While Murphy was already a top 10 pick at the position, interested owners perhaps need to look at him as a top-six second-baseman with this news.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our season-long articles, 15 in-season lineup tools and over 200 days of expert DFS research/tools. Sign Up Now!

 

Stock Watch

Daniel Murphy (1B/2B, COL)

Stock Up

Readers can see from the intro that this is a move that fantasy owners should be high on, but what and where should they expect to see the jump? First, last year was a bit of a weird one for the slugger with only 91 games played, and a mid-season trade affecting some of the soft factors. The injury time off was expected, with knee surgery happening in the offseason, but his recovery and ultimate strong play should be of interest to owners. Still, Murphy is not young, and any knee injury should be a bit scary for a player, so if he is drafted make sure to add a young back-up later in the draft as cover. The good news is that this was surgery as opposed to general time off for a knee injury, so the issue should be fixed moving into this year.

On the offensive side, Murphy is one of the best pure hitters in the game, and even in limited time in 2018, slashed .299/.336/.454 with 12 homers and 42 RBI. The power was admittedly behind the 23-HR pace from 2017, but the trade to the Cubs took some playing time, and the previously discussed injury limited the return without a Spring Training. His K-rate was up from the career norm at 11.4%, but still down from 2017’s 13% mark.

Similar numbers concerning walk rate and steals show that there is not much else that changed in the profile. All of this is good for owners, as with the move to Colorado, those doubles should creep back to the 43 mark from 2017, and triples will be on the table again. If he can stay healthy for a full season, it is not out of the realm of possibility that Murphy can match his 2016 slash of .347/.390/.595 with 25 homers and 104 RBI. At the very least, after a full offseason of recovery, with a strong line-up context, Murphy is not a candidate for a big step back at this point. While it might be easy analysis to say that moving to Coors is good, the fact that he now hits behind Charlie Blackmon, and in front of Nolan Arenado and David Dahl looks to be an excellent fit.

The other key question will be where does Murphy play? This article has talked about him playing the keystone, and that is the most likely spot, but Roster Resource has him playing at first. This would mean that Ryan McMahon is not making the team, and the Rockies do not have an upgrade in the outfield for Ian Desmond. If Murphy can play a decent second, then there should not be any worries about him holding down that position.

The other consideration is that with the shift, a slower second baseman is not as exposed versus a pull-happy hitter, and this will play well for Murphy's fielding and his ability to stick at second base. According to Baseball Savant, the Rockies shifted the 13th most in the majors last year and were a top-eight team when it came to shifting versus lefties. This means that second base is a real possibility and even if he plays more at first, the second base eligibility keeps him as a great draft asset. Or at the very least, he does not seem to lose eligibility for drafts in the future, keeping him as a legitimate draft target in dynasty drafts as well.

 

Garrett Hampson (2B/SS, COL)

Stock Down

The caveat on this stock watch is the assumption that Hampson is no longer the starting second baseman on opening day due to Murphy, so if the latter moves to first, then Hampson might see a stock jump here. Playing on a team with Murphy adds overall offensive value, so Hampson adds that due to context. Not a huge jump, but again, Murphy seems to make everyone on this team a bit better.

The apparent piece limiting Hampson is that less playing time makes him more of a bench utility player at best. Hampson had a breakout 2018 campaign, as not many viewed him as a great hitter coming into the year, but a .275/.396/.400 slash showed real value over 24 games last year. Maybe “breakout” is too strong a label, but Hampson impressed during his stop with the team and shed the utility label at the least. Hampson still seems to be the longterm future, and perhaps might take over if Trevor Story moves around the diamond. It would be shocking to see him not make the roster, but with Colorado, owners need to be paying attention.

Back to what owners can expect from the utility player, Hampson's minor league numbers in 2018 were great with a plus .300 average at both stops up the ladder, and complemented by a total of 37 steals. While he did not steal much with the Rockies, the speed is there for a player with tremendous steals upside. And yet, with the park, and the type of players hitting around him, do not expect Hampson to steal all that much, as a Nolan Arenado homer brings him home anyway. Hampson is a player worth looking at very late in drafts if he's not projected as a full-time player. If he is projected to start, he moves closer to the 13-18 round range, and he could see his value steadily rise during the Winter.

 

Brendan Rodgers (2B/SS, COL)

Stock Down?

In some early drafts and mocks, Rodgers seems to be one of the sexy rookies to pick way too early. In dynasty drafts, this is still a good target, even as his stock has dropped a bit over the past 12 months. With Murphy's addition, there is not a clear path to him joining the Rockies in 2019, even with Murphy possibly playing at first.

With Ian Desmond already on the roster, even a strong Spring makes Rodgers the victim of the numbers game, but perhaps a late-season call-up is the best bet. To be fair to the Rockies, 2018 was not a great campaign for the Rodgers, with only a .232 batting average in 19 games at Triple-A. While this is a small sample size, the K-rate shot up to 22.2% and the walk rate dropped to 1.4%. Without knowing much more, it seems that Rodgers could use another year at least before joining the team, and at that point, might be a third baseman to fill for other free agents leaving.

With the Murphy signing, Rodgers should no longer be drafted in mixed leagues and is at best a long-shot stash for NL-only teams. The other thing to watch is the possible trade of Rodgers to add an outfielder or pitcher to a team that might think it can overtake the Dodgers this year. While this is not the likely outcome, it would not be the first time this offseason that the idea was dangled.

More Fantasy Baseball Analysis




More Recent Articles

 

Updated Week 7 PPR Rankings (Top 300)

Welcome to Week 7 RotoBallers. Below are our updated consensus Week 7 PPR rankings for fantasy football, including some running notes on relevant injuries, player news and rankings updates: Josh Gordon has officially been ruled out for Week 7. Todd Gurley was not on the final injury report and is expected to play. David Johnson (ankle)... Read More


Wide Receiver Matchups To Target in Week 7

In Week 6, Julio Jones didn't score, but he came through with a decent fantasy day, going over 100-yards receiving. Brandin Cooks brutal Week 6 showing was a little bit of a surprise given his 2018 track record against the 49ers, but the Rams offensive line was overwhelmed which led to a rough day for... Read More


Fantasy Football Starts and Sits: Matchups Analysis for Week 7

Welcome to our Week 7 matchup analysis and start/sit column for fantasy football. We'll be covering every single contest from the Sunday slate in one convenient location, helping you make the best decisions for your fantasy lineups. Be sure to check back regularly because this article will be updated as news comes in regarding injuries and other... Read More


Week 7 Start/Sit: Monday Night Football Matchups Analysis

Even if this doesn’t turn out to be great MNF game, at least it's a divisional game with some importance. This is what Jets fans need to tell themselves heading into their second Monday Night Football game of the season. With the New England Patriots coming to town off their annual semi-bye in which they... Read More


The King's Key Starters and Tough Calls - Lineup Spotlights for Week 7

Welcome to Week 7, RotoBallers! Below you will find some of my spotlight plays and tough lineup decisions for the upcoming week of the fantasy football season. These player selections are based off my Premium Weekly Lineup Rankings, available as part of the RotoBaller's NFL Premium Pass. Enter promo code KING at checkout for a... Read More


Fantasy Football Rookies to Watch - Darius Slayton, Jakobi Meyers, Josh Oliver

Week 7 is here RotoBallers, which means we're smack dab in the middle of the regular fantasy season! In case you are new to this column, each week we'll highlight a few first-year players who are worth keeping your eye on. Not all of the players listed below are must-starts, but all of them are... Read More


Fleaflicker's Most Added and Dropped: Week 7

Every year and in every sport, a few teams march effortlessly towards the ultimate prize as if it's been preordained. When seemingly invincible teams like these are beaten, it's not always by the quality of their opponent but instead by their own psychological mindset. They look past a lesser opponent and fall victim to the... Read More


Fantasy Football News and Injuries - Running Updates

Below is a quick-hit list of running notes on relevant injuries and player news, including pre-game reports and live in-game updates. Stay tuned for updates all throughout the week and on Sunday morning game day:   Week 7 Josh Gordon has officially been ruled out for Week 7. Todd Gurley was not on the final injury... Read More


Week 7 Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

Below you will find all of RotoBaller's fantasy football weekly rankings, tiers, player news and stats for the 2019 NFL season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Weekly PPR Rankings Weekly Half-PPR Rankings Weekly Standard Rankings Dynasty League Rankings     Fantasy... Read More


Pass Rush vs QB Matchups to Watch - Week 7

It's Week 7 and the injuries just keep piling up. Heading into this week, six different teams will be starting quarterbacks that were not their opening-day starters, and that doesn't take into account teams like the Indianapolis Colts or Kansas City Chiefs, who just lost quarterback Patrick Mahomes (knee) for at least three weeks. To... Read More


Offensive Line Rankings Analysis: Week 7

In Week 6, we once again saw some great football, starting with the New England Patriots continuing their undefeated start to the season and ending with one of the most controversial games of the week as the Green Bay Packers overcame the Detroit Lions. The London games continued with Jameis Winston struggling once again, this... Read More


Is Stefon Diggs Really Back?

Weeks 1-5: 4.6 targets, 3.2 receptions, 50.6 yards per game, one touchdown. Week 6: 11 targets, eight receptions, 167 yards, three touchdowns. All of these numbers show a marked improvement on the season averages of Stefon Diggs in Minnesota. But, do they tell the whole story? Do they really signify that Diggs should be considered... Read More


Inside the Tent - Week 7 NFL Injury Insight

At RotoBaller, we can't stress enough the importance of keeping up with injuries and playing your best lineup week after week. Players are going to get injured, that's an unavoidable fact. What's avoidable though is making the wrong roster decisions based on the injuries surrounding your fantasy squad. If you want to dominate your leagues... Read More


Week 7 Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

Below are RotoBaller's Week 7 defense tiers and rankings, or which defenses to stream, start and target off the waiver wire for Week 7 of the NFL and fantasy football season. In case you missed it, this is our seventh year now writing this weekly column. Our weekly tiered defense rankings are a guide to making waiver... Read More


Week 7 Stream Team - Free Agent and Bye-Week Streamers

Now that bye weeks are in full swing; streaming becomes a more viable and almost necessary strategy. Knowing who to add and when to start them could be the ultimate difference-maker in a weekly matchup. Making the right streaming decisions throughout the season could easily be the difference in winning a championship. Each week, I... Read More