'Buy-high' players

Updated: June 18, 2013, 12:53 PM ET
By Todd Zola | Mastersball.com

This is the week I stop driving to the doughnut shop and start walking to the supermarket to buy fruits and vegetables. That's the best way to stay healthy. The best way to improve your fantasy baseball team: Cut the doughnuts, and take in more of those underrated fruits and veggies. In other words, it's time to sell high and buy low.

Under the microscope
ESPN.com IllustrationToday's topic: Hot starters to trade for

This is the point of the season where fantasy trading picks up as teams have identified strengths and weaknesses and are looking to address their deficiencies while trying to inflict minimal damage to the rest of the roster. The most common pundit advice is to buy low and sell high, as mentioned above. But this is real easy to suggest while sitting at a keyboard or talking into a microphone. In reality, it's a whole lot easier said than done.

Advanced analysis has unclothed the conventional sell-high player. Most savvy fantasy players know this level of performance isn't likely to continue. They understand the luck components of BABIP, HR/FB ratio and LOB% and no longer are willing to assume an elevated level of performance.

Several years ago I recognized this reality and introduced the notion of "buying high." (And contrary to what some of you may be thinking, high does not refer to my mental state when suggesting that.) Buying high is driven by a difference in opinion with respect to the player's expected performance going forward. In many cases, both owners agree a player's performance will wane a bit. The concept of buying high simply means one owner's expectations of the player exceeds the other's.