by Will Overton
We still have a little over 24 hours left to go before the MLB trade deadline, and certainly there is going to be a whole lot more moves still made, at least based on all the rumors that are swirling right now. That said, there have already been a lot of trades, made which gives us plenty to analyze.
Our esteemed Professor has been breaking down trades extremely well, but we are going to keep the reaction train rolling here, by looking at some of these earlier moves from a waiver point of view. I am going to highlight a few guys who I think has seen a spike in value as a result of a recent trade, whether they were the one traded, or someone left behind who assumes a new spot.
Here are some of the guys I am targeting on the wire:
Kelly Johnson – 2B, New York Mets: Kelly Johnson made his New York Mets debut with a bang earlier this week, hitting a home run in his first game with the team. Johnson wasn’t getting as consistent of playing time in Atlanta as he really should have given the state of that team. He seems to be settling in nicely as the Mets second baseman though, and with his positional flexibility they should be able to find somewhere for him most days. He has two of the things I love in a free agent pickup, first he can play multiple positions, like almost all of them. The second thing is he has power, with 10 HR in 194 AB. If Johnson is going to play regularly in New York he’s got a shot at being a really nice fantasy piece the rest of the season. Read more
by Will Overton
The season is halfway over and it’s time to get serious for the next couple of months if you are going to make a run at your title. Whether you’re at the top trying to fend off the challengers in your league or you’re the one doing the chasing, it’s time to lock in and make every move with a purpose.
This means if you don’t already know your standings inside and out, this is the time to get to know them. The best possible lineup for you to be running out every day is the lineup that stands the best chance to either gain points or keep your points in competitive categories. This should be driving the moves that you make, rather than just adding guys randomly with no real rhyme or reason.
Today we are going to be looking at some guys who can specifically help you in the category of batting average. Boosting your batting average from the waiver wire is one of the hardest things to do, which is why you have to be so conscious of this during your draft. That said, we are going to highlight a handful of guys who plugged into your lineup regularly should help bring your average up enough to make an impact if you’re close in this category. Read more
by Will Overton
It’s all-star break time and that’s a good chance for fantasy owners to take a few days to step back from their day to day lineup duties and really look at their team as a whole. You can take the time to make some trade offers and do some add/drops that might be long overdue.
In the spirit of all-star week, and all the fun festivities, we are bringing out a special all-star themed waiver wire article. We will hit on one guy at each position owned in less than 25% of leagues who should be owned in more leagues and could be helpful to teams in any format.
So without any further rambling let’s get to naming the waiver wire all-stars:
C: John Jaso – Tampa Bay Rays
This is that guy who has been hurt all year and fantasy owners don’t even realize has come back. Jaso got hurt on Opening Day and just made his return last week. Since making his return he is 9 – 22 with 4 R, 1 HR and 3 RBI. On top of the nine hits he also has five walks, giving him an impressive OBP of .500 in his first week. He has stepped right in as the team’s leadoff hitter and with the rate at which he gets on base that’s going to lead to a lot of runs, even on the Rays. Jaso will be a Top 12 catcher in the second half of the season in my opinion and that’s great to get on the wire. Read more
by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
We are all looking for a bargain, that player who the rest of your league isn’t paying much attention to that you can pluck off the waiver wire and get positive value from. There are a handful of starting pitchers on the verge of returning, all of which have shown value in the past, though don’t forget they also carry significant risk with them as well. Are they worth owning? Could they provide a boost down the stretch? Let’s take a look:
Brandon Beachy – Los Angeles Dodgers
CBS – 12%, Yahoo – 2%, ESPN – 2.0%
We haven’t seen him in the Majors since 2013, and even that was just 30.0 IP, but we all remember him fondly (career 3.23 ERA courtesy of a 9.25 K/9 and 2.89 BB/9 over 267.2 IP) and he’s finally closing in on a return. He’s thrown 18.2 innings in the minors as he rehabs from his second Tommy John surgery and there has certainly been some struggles (as expected). The big issue has been his control, with 10 BB, but unfortunately that’s not the only problem. Read more
by Ray Lin
While patient fantasy owners have gotten some starting pitchers back from the DL, like Jose Fernandez and Matt Cain, they’ve also sustained some massive gut punches to their outfield with multi-month absences expected for Giancarlo Stanton and George Springer. That’s not to mention managers who also lost Byron Buxton and Rusney Castillo to injury or demotion.
Stanton, who had been the #3 ranked outfielder on the ESPN Player Rater, went down first after experiencing soreness in his left palm that was eventually revealed to be a broken hamate bone that required surgery. The Major League home run leader is expected to return sometime in early August. Springer, meanwhile, was producing at a 30/30 pace as the #15 outfielder before getting drilled by a 96 mph Edinson Volquez fastball that broke his right wrist. He’s also expected to return in early August if all goes well during rehab.
It’s a tough pill to swallow for owners of both superstars who were getting a massive return on their early-round investments. However, as all fantasy managers have to do, we soldier on and count on the next man up. Let’s look at a handful of potential outfield replacements who are available in at least half of all Yahoo leagues. Read more
by Will Overton
Once you have exhausted all the viable healthy options on the waiver wire, you have to look elsewhere. You can cycle through the hot hitters every week, but that can be a lot of work and there’s a good chance that you swing and miss a lot. You may be better off grabbing a guy you can stash for a couple weeks while they recover from an injury, but when they come back they will be long-term options for you and not just short-term plug and plays.
We have examined the DL to find guys who are available in several leagues who will be coming back soon enough to make an impact for your fantasy team. If you can afford to wait and stash these guys the moves could pay dividends.
Khris Davis – OF, Milwaukee Brewers: If all goes well Davis should be rejoining the Brewers next week. He is set to start a rehab assignment today, which should go through the weekend, and if there are no issues with the process he’ll be back in the Brewers outfield on Monday. He has missed all of June with a knee injury, but reports are he’s feeling good and ready to go. He possesses the power potential to be a real game changer for fantasy teams as power isn’t easy to find on the waiver wire. The Brewers lineup is clicking right now with Jonathan Lucroy and Ryan Braun swinging better bats and Davis could jump in and really get something going quickly. Read more