The 2022 MLB Trade Deadline was a BIG one, headlined by the earth-shattering trade of Juan Soto to the San Diego Padres from the Washington Nationals.
Soto was just one of several star players dealt ahead of the Aug. 2 deadline, joining Josh Bell, Luis Castillo, Noah Syndergaard, and others.
With so many moving pieces, how will all of these trades affect their fantasy value going forward?
We’re here to help you make sense of a crazy last few days with our MLB Trade Deadline fantasy baseball analysis.
MLB Trade Deadline Fantasy Baseball Fallout 2023
Baseball’s top trades at the deadline will be analyzed here from a fantasy baseball standpoint when they’re agreed upon.
Juan Soto & Josh Bell acquired by Padres (Aug. 2)
From Nationals for MacKenzie Gore, Luke Voit, C.J. Abrams, Robert Hassell III, Jarlin Susana, & James Wood
Juan Soto Trade Fantasy Impact: Soto and Bell will join Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr. (when he returns from the IL) in San Diego, where they’ll form an absolutely terrifying middle of the order. Both former Nationals should benefit from a better supporting cast with the Padres after leaving one of the worst teams in baseball.
The only potential downside is that Petco Park is the most pitching-friendly park in the majors this year (per Baseball Savant), but Nationals Park isn’t far behind so Soto and Bell shouldn’t be affected too much by the change.
Gore’s fantasy value takes a major hit for the rest of the season, as he’s unlikely to get many wins in the near future and is moving to a slightly more hitting-friendly environment. Voit moves to a better park but a much weaker lineup, so his fantasy value may slip a bit as well.
Abrams won’t have to worry about losing playing time when Tatis returns, however, and Hassell may get a cup of coffee on a Washington team that is already out of contention.
Raisel Iglesias acquired by Braves (Aug. 2)
From Angels for Jesse Chavez & Tucker Davidson (minors)
Raisel Iglesias Trade Fantasy Impact: Iglesias slides into a setup role behind Kenley Jansen in Atlanta and provides ninth-inning insurance for the Braves in case Jansen gets hurt. His departure potentially opens the door for Ryan Tepera to close for the Angels.
Jordan Montgomery acquired by Cardinals (Aug. 2)
From Yankees for Harrison Bader & Player to be named later or cash considerations
Jordan Montgomery Trade Fantasy Impact: Montgomery will miss the Yankees’ tremendous run support, but he’ll also benefit from moving to a much weaker division and pitching in a more neutral ballpark.
Bader is more of a depth piece for New York and will likely be a fourth outfielder upon his return.
Whit Merrifield acquired by Blue Jays (Aug. 2)
From Royals for Samad Taylor (minors) & Max Castillo
Whit Merrifield Trade Fantasy Impact: Merrifield will look to bounce back north of the border in Toronto’s loaded lineup. He probably won’t hit leadoff as he did in Kansas City, however, and will likely bat towards the bottom of the order, which dims his fantasy prospects somewhat.
Noah Syndergaard acquired by Phillies (Aug. 2)
From Angels for Mickey Moniak & Jadiel Sanchez
Noah Syndergaard Trade Fantasy Impact: Syndergaard should get a few more wins on a better team after going just 5-8 for the Angels. He may see his ERA rise, however, due to Philadelphia’s suspect defense and more hitting-friendly home park.
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Tyler Mahle acquired by Twins (Aug. 2)
From Reds for Spencer Steer (minors), Christian Encarnacion-Strand (minors), & Steven Hajjar
Tyler Mahle Trade Fantasy Impact: This trade should do wonders for Mahle’s fantasy stock. In addition to leaving one of the worst teams in baseball for a contender, he’s also going from the park with the second-highest offensive park factor this year behind Coors Field (per Baseball Savant) to one with the eighth-lowest.
Mahle’s ERA was nearly a full run higher at Great American Ball Park this year, so moving to Target Field should help him maintain an ERA under 4.00 going forward. He’ll also benefit from Minnesota’s dangerous lineup behind him, which ranks as one of the best offenses in the league.
David Robertson acquired by Phillies (Aug. 2)
From Cubs for Ben Brown (minors)
David Robertson Trade Fantasy Impact: Assuming the Phillies commit to Robertson as their main closer, he should see more save opportunities on a much better team. His presence also likely bumps Seranthony Dominguez to a setup role.
- Get the latest fantasy saves news from the Trade Deadline with our Fantasy Baseball Closer Rankings.
Joey Gallo acquired by Dodgers (Aug. 2)
From Yankees for Clayton Beeter (minors)
Joey Gallo Trade Fantasy Impact: Gallo moves from one star-studded team to another, so he may have trouble finding regular playing time if his hitting doesn’t improve. He’ll have a lot of terrific hitters around him, but that won’t matter much if he continues to strike out in nearly 40% of his plate appearances.
Gallo will also miss Yankee Stadium from a park factor standpoint (although probably not the fans), as it’s extremely friendly to left-handed pull hitters with its short porch in right field. Dodger Stadium rates as only average in home runs for left-handed hitters, so Gallo will likely lose a few long balls out west.
Eric Hosmer acquired by Red Sox (Aug. 2)
With Corey Rosier (minors) & Max Ferguson (minors) from Padres for Jay Groome (minors)
Eric Hosmer Trade Fantasy Impact: Boston is a much better destination for Hosmer than Washington. Not only are the Red Sox still in contention (albeit barely), but his hitting approach is well-suited to Fenway Park.
As a high-contact spray hitter who uses all fields, Hosmer is the type of left-handed batter who can take advantage of Fenway’s sizable outfield gaps as well as the Green Monster. The 32-year-old veteran also gives the team another productive bat alongside Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers.
Brandon Drury acquired by Padres (Aug. 2)
From Reds for Victor Acosta (minors)
Brandon Drury Trade Fantasy Impact: This trade dampens Drury’s fantasy value considerably. He was hitting second for the Reds and playing in one of the most offense-friendly venues in the sport, but now he’ll likely hit lower in the Padres’ lineup and moves to the most pitching-friendly park in the majors.
Drury might also see less frequent at-bats on a stacked Padres team that may use him more as a super-utility guy than an everyday player.
- See which players will gain value and are worth picking up in our Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire running blog.
Jorge Lopez acquired by Twins (Aug. 2)
From Orioles for Cade Povich (minors), Yennier Cano, Juan Nunez (minors), & Juan Rojas (minors)
Jorge Lopez Trade Fantasy Impact: The big question will be whether or not Lopez slides in as the full-time closer for the Twins, who have been using a committee of Jhoan Duran and Tyler Duffey. Fantasy gamers must wait and see how the new bullpen situation shakes out, especially since Lopez is already rostered in most leagues.
Lopez will likely take over the ninth-inning role in Minnesota, but don’t drop Duran or Duffey just yet if you’re desperate for saves.
Meanwhile in Baltimore, look for Felix Bautista to replace Lopez as the Orioles’ new closer.
Frankie Montas acquired by Yankees (Aug. 1)
With Lou Trivino from A’s for JP Sears, Ken Waldichuk (minors), Luis Medina (minors), & Cooper Bowman (minors)
Frankie Montas Trade Fantasy Impact: From a fantasy perspective, this is a huge win for Montas. He’s going from one of the worst teams in baseball to one of the best, where he’ll have the best offense in MLB behind him every time he takes the mound.
His numbers may suffer a bit in Yankee Stadium, however, which is far more friendly to hitters than the Oakland Coliseum.
As for Trivino, he appears poised for positive regression based on his peripherals. He’s unlikely to get many closing opportunities in a bullpen that already features Clay Holmes and Aroldis Chapman, however, so he’ll likely pitch in lower-leverage situations at first until he gets straightened out.
Read more MLB Trade Deadline analysis
Josh Hader acquired by Padres (Aug. 1)
From Brewers for Taylor Rogers, Dinelson Lamet, Esteury Ruiz (minors), & Robert Gasser (minors)
Josh Hader Trade Fantasy Impact: Hader will immediately take over closing duties for the Padres as he looks to put his recent slump behind him. His 4.24 ERA and 1.12 WHIP are both the worst of his career, but he’s still blowing hitters away with a 15.6 K/9 and should return to form with San Diego.
Hader’s departure potentially opens the door for Devin Williams to handle the ninth inning for Milwaukee. Williams has already notched six saves this season and has not allowed a run since May 10, tossing 28 2/3 scoreless innings over his last 30 appearances.
Expect Rogers to work in a setup role or possibly share closing duties with Williams until he rights the ship. His underlying metrics are encouraging, as his 2.35 FIP is two full runs lower than his 4.35 FIP. His poor July was also largely caused by bad luck based on his 2.09 FIP last month.
Trey Mancini acquired by Astros (Aug. 1)
From Orioles in Three-Team Trade with Rays
Trey Mancini Trade Fantasy Impact: Mancini may not get the chance to play every day in Houston’s crowded lineup, but his fantasy value gets a nice boost whenever he’s in the batting order.
Not only do the Astros play in a more hitting-friendly park (especially for right-handers), but they also have one of the best offenses in baseball, which can not be said about the Orioles. As such, Mancini should have more opportunities to score and drive in runs and could see a spike in his power numbers as well.
Luis Castillo acquired by Mariners (July 29)
From Reds for Noelvi Marte (minors), Edwin Arroyo (minors), Levi Stoudt (minors), & Andrew Moore (minors)
Luis Castillo Trade Fantasy Impact: Castillo is having the strongest season of his career, which could get even better now that he’s trading in a hitter-friendly home park for a pitcher-friendly one. He had a 3.64 ERA in Cincinnati this season versus a 2.09 mark on the road.
While his high ground-ball rate (53.2% career, 47.1 % in 2022) helps him thrive anywhere, he should benefit from Seattle’s superior defense. The Reds’ infield has combined for a negative 13 OAA (outs above average) this season, whereas the Mariners’ infield has combined for a positive one.
Castillo should also get more run support with Seattle, so look for his productive campaign to continue with an ERA below 3.00.
Meanwhile, Marte gets a significant boost to his dynasty league value due to the potential of playing at Great American Ball Park.
Andrew Benintendi acquired by Yankees (July 26)
From Royals for T.J. Sikkema (minors), Chandler Champlain (minors), & Beck Way (minors)
Andrew Benintendi Trade Fantasy Impact: This trade should give Benintendi’s fantasy value a significant boost for the rest of the season. Not only is he joining the highest-scoring offense in baseball (and leaving the fourth-lowest), but he also moves to a park that’s much friendlier for left-handed sluggers with its short porch in right.
Benintendi has struggled in the power department this season with just three home runs and a .078 ISO. He’s shown 15-20-homer pop in the past, however, and Yankee Stadium could give him a boost there, as it has for Anthony Rizzo.
The only potential concern is that Benintendi will likely hit in the bottom half of New York’s lineup after primarily batting out of the two-hole for Kansas City, but his high-contact approach should still generate RBIs with so much offensive talent around him.
When is the MLB Trade Deadline?
According to the newly agreed-upon CBA earlier in 2022, the MLB commissioner — Rob Manfred or someone else — can instruct to mark the MLB Trade Deadline on a date between July 28 and Aug. 3.
The most common date in recent memory for the MLB Trade Deadline has been July 31. However, if that date falls on the weekend, as it does in 2022, the MLB’s league office will often push to a later date.
In a 2019 rule change, MLB ruled that no players placed on waivers can be traded after that first and only deadline date.
Why the MLB Trade Deadline matters for fantasy baseball
The MLB Trade Deadline can significantly affect the roles and production of players who are traded, potentially altering fantasy baseball seasons in the process.
For position players, switching teams means new home ballparks, which can be beneficial or detrimental to their statistics. Trades can also affect a hitter’s RBIs and runs scored with a new lineup. Does he have a better or worse supporting cast? Is he batting higher or lower than he did in his old team’s order?
Players sometimes change positions after being traded, which can affect their positional eligibility in fantasy leagues. Younger players, including rookies, may also get a chance to replace veteran players who are traded away. Stashes you’ve waited on all season can suddenly see their value shoot upward.
As for pitchers, relief pitchers tend to be more impacted by trades than starting pitchers. Teams often shake up their bullpens at the deadline as relievers are less costly to acquire and more expendable than starters.
As such, closers may lose their jobs when dealt to a new team, opening the door for setup relievers to receive save opportunities on their old teams. Accordingly, fantasy players may want to trade a closer before he potentially loses much of his fantasy value and/or add setup men who could be in line to close.
On rare occasions where starting pitchers are traded, they can also be influenced by the change in park factors. They have the potential to earn more wins if they’re traded to a better team, where they may benefit from superior run support, bullpen, and/or defense behind them.
The timing of the Trade Deadline is also important. The larger window to establish the date means trades can influence the final two-plus months of the fantasy season, which is when fantasy managers are jostling for playoff position and competing for fantasy championships.