Only two of the league's seven contenders had the combination of the FAAB, cap space, and roster room to place a big bid on Snider, but that's all it took to knock out the non-contenders trying to grab Snider at a keeper price. I covered Snider last week in one of my trade write-ups. He's off to a slow start for the Buccos, and while the Pirates surely want him to succeed, he's not going to be handed a job in a playoff race if he doesn't perform.
Kurt Suzuki $21. Other bids $7, $4, $0.
I'm a little surprised the bidding wasn't more robust on Suzuki, particularly from the non-contenders, but Suzuki wasn't hitting all that much in Oakland prior to the trade and there are no guarantees he'll hit in DC either. Still, if you have a hole at catcher and you're contending Suzuki is a must buy. The team that bought Suzuki also bought Snider. For those of you who believe in hoarding your FAAB until the trade deadline, just let the mantra "Snider, Suzuki, $61" roll around between your ears for awhile.
Josh Vitters $15. Other bid $3.
Vitters should play every day down the stretch for the Cubs. It seems like he has been around forever, but he's only 22 years old. Vitters' prospect sheen was tarnished coming into this year, but he has bounced back with a huge power season at AAA. I'm not sure how good Vitters will be long term, but in the short-term he's a must add in N.L.-only and he might even have mixed relevance at some point down the stretch.
Jonathan Broxton $12. Other bids $10, $7, $6, $2.
Broxton's value primarily comes as a future play in case he signs with an N.L. team as a closer in 2013, and that's why you see the two double-digit bids here. If you're playing to win now I wouldn't add Broxton. There are better relievers out there in terms of rate stats and Ks if you're making the safe ERA/WHIP play.
Tyler Pastornicky $6. Other bid $0.
Pastornicky started the year as the Braves starting shortstop, but a poor start and the inevitable ascension of Andrelton Simmons left Pastornicky out in the cold. He's back up in the bigs now, but with the Braves acquisition of Paul Janish he's only a bench option. Pastornicky doesn't even have enough speed to make him intriguing in N.L.-only and as a $10 potential freeze he isn't worth it either.
Brandon League $5. Other bids $2, $1.
As I mentioned last Wednesday, League is a better pick-up than Broxton if you're looking for a "safe" reliever. And - as with Broxton - the play here for non-contenders is to hope that League lands somewhere in the N.L. in 2013 as a closer.
Justin Germano $4. Other bids $1, $0
With the bloodletting of the Cubs roster at the trade deadline, Germano got the call for yesterday's start and put up an OK outing against the Dodgers. Germano is a journeyman who is more of a Quad-A type than any kind of real prospect, so it's best to avoid him even in deeper leagues. His Major League track record is much better in the pen than in the rotation.
Sean Burnett $4. Other bid $0
Burnett has been one of the best middle relievers in baseball this year and should be owned in all deep league formats. He isn't a saves candidate.
Dioner Navarro $3
A one-time quasi-prospect, Navarro was playing the role of organizational depth at AAA for the Reds this year to the tune of a .330 batting average (albeit with very little power). Navarro got the call because Devin Mesoraco hit the 7-day DL with a concussion. Ryan Hanigan should get the majority of AB behind the plate in Cincinnati, so Navarro is probably only worth it if you're carrying a complete dead spot behind the plate.
Gregor Blanco $3. Other bid $0.
Blanco had fallen off of the map after a hot May, and with the Giants acquisition of Hunter Pence will probably get buried on the bench. Blanco does have some pretty solid wheels, so if you're desperate for speed he might be worth a speculative add in N.L.-only.
Steve Pearce $2
Pearce is in the mix for regular at bats on a limp Astros team. He has power potential but has never been good for any appreciable amount of time in the Majors and is on a team where playing time is hard to predict for most of the journeymen the 'Stros have assembled to play out the string in 2012. I'd avoid Pearce unless you're really, really desperate for home runs in N.L.-only.
Gorkys Hernandez $1. Other bid $0.
Hernandez is in the mix for regular AB with the Marlins now that they've decided they're playing for 2013 and beyond. Hernandez has a good amount of speed but he has never shown he can hit in the Majors and probably won't make much of an impact in N.L.-only. He's a huge batting average risk if he does play every day.
Eric Stults $1
Stults is a 32-year-old journeyman who doesn't strike a lot of guys out and is more filler than anything else. But since he pitches for the Padres he's at least worth considering for half of his starts. He's a two-start pitcher this week: at home against the Cubs and on the road in Pittsburgh. If you need innings - and are willing to take the risk that the Pittsburgh start won't be atrocious - there are worse plays you can make in N.L.-only.
Brian Schneider $0
With Carlos Ruiz due to miss 4-6 weeks - and possibly be shut down for the season - Schneider should get some at bats for the Phillies. Unless he plays almost every day, though, he's not the greatest play. Schneider doesn't have enough power to offset his typically subpar batting averages. Even in my home league and Tout Wars - both 13-team N.L.-onlies - there were better plays in the free agent pool than Schneider this week.
Brad Brach $0
Brach's a middle reliever for the Padres with next to no chance at saves. His K rate makes him worth looking at, but the high walk rate makes him a no for me; I don't like carrying pitchers with high WHIPs even if they're only relievers. There are better options out there, even in N.L.-only.
Matt McBride $0
The adjective "Rockies hitter" instantly puts McBride in the intriguing category, but he's 27 years old and is going to serve as more of a bench guy for the Rox than anything else. He also didn't master AAA until Age 27 and until he got to hitters' haven Colorado Springs. He's a long shot to ever be more than organizational depth.
Kevin Frandsen $0
Frandsen will get regular at bats for the Phillies as long as Placido Polanco is out. He's yet another journeyman at the age of 30, and while he should move the chains, batting in the 8th spot for the Fighting Phils isn't going to make him that much of a runs/RBI guy.
Alberto Cabrera $0
Cabrera is just a name to know right now. He made a great deal of progress with his control in the minors this year, and is a possible future closer-in-waiting. He's more intriguing than some closers-in-waiting given the gaping holes in the Cubs bullpen and the fact that the continuously combustible Carlos Marmol is the man, but the percentage of hard throwing rookie relievers that become closers is low. Feel free to speculate, but know that it's likely that nothing comes of it.
B.J. Rosenberg $0
Rosenberg is a pretty typical middle relief free agent arm in deep Roto leagues. His whiff and walk rates in the minors were good and if he can carry even some of that over to the Majors he's worthy of owning. Jon Papelbon and his enormous contract are in the front of this bullpen, so if you're trolling for saves don't bother.