Fantasy Baseball Waiver Advice: April 24
Dan Malin is here to look around the Fantasy Baseball waiver wire to point out some intriguing players to grab off waivers!
This week we take a look at a handful of new names without rehashing too many old names, but the very first guy mentioned was in this article a couple weeks back and everyone needs to rush to their waiver wire to go pick him up. Here are the best mid-week options to grab off your waiver wire!
10 Team Leagues
Clint Frazier (Outfielder – New York Yankees) FAAB Bid: 20-25% - Frazier’s ownership is on a very quick spike after a solid showing this weekend. To help his case, Aaron Judge looks to be out for the foreseeable future with an oblique injury. Lesson learned, folks: don’t go to the gym and build muscle. It does you no good. Playing time will be easy to come by for Frazier with two of New York’s biggest sluggers currently residing on the Injured List along with a few others. If he can keep performing at a high level then the Yankees will have a problem on their hands in which case they won’t be able to take him out of the lineup.
Dallas Keuchel (Starting Pitcher – Free Agent) FAAB Bid: 5-8% - Keuchel’s probably only available in shallow leagues due to the fact that an impressive number of fantasy owners have been stashing him. Keuchel should get signed at some point this season. He’s expressed interest in working on a one-year deal for about $17-$18 million or a longer-term deal for less annual money. There are definitely a couple teams that could use him. San Diego is appealing after they’ve gotten off to a decent start and could look to add another guy to the rotation, but that may take some time. The Milwaukee Brewers strike me as a team that could use another guy in the starting rotation, but they also aren’t desperate to make that move yet. But the Boston Red Sox just lost Nathan Eovaldi for possibly two months at the most. Add in the fact that it’s been a horrendous start to the year for the Boston rotation in general and there is a clear need for another arm. The Sox likely won’t pony up the money for a long-term deal, but they could persuade Keuchel into a one-year deal if the struggles stretch into the summer.
Omar Narváez (Catcher – Seattle Mariners) FAAB Bid: 15% - Howard’s been a big supporter of Narvaez for DFS purposes and while it’s taken me longer to get on board, I’m finally a supporter. I love the Mariners offense and touted Domingo Santana , Jay Bruce , and Dan Vogelbach in the waiver advice column previously, but now it’s Narvaez’s turn to get some love. The catcher position sucks. It’s probably the one position most fantasy players punt in hopes of finding a better option on waivers. Enter, Omar Narváez . Entering Tuesday night, in 77 plate appearances, he’s slashing .304/.377/.536 with five home runs, 17 runs scored, and a dozen RBI. I’m not in love with the fact Seattle’s hit him seventh in the order the last couple weeks, but he’s still producing at a level where he can contribute to your fantasy team.
Yandy Díaz (First Baseman, Third Baseman – Tampa Bay Rays) FAAB Bid: 12% - There is some concern about Diaz’s playing time with Joey Wendle coming off the IL and the potential impact it could have on his and Brandon Lowe ’s playing time. I wouldn’t fret just yet. Both Lowe and Diaz have been solid contributors and will continue to receive starts. Diaz has an OPS over .900 since April 5th with five home runs and a stolen base to his name. He’s hit towards the top of the order and possesses multi-position eligibility.
Shin-Soo Choo (Outfielder – Texas Rangers) FAAB Bid: 5-8% - Surprisingly Choo is still under 50% owned on Yahoo and ESPN leagues and he’s been fairly consistent this year. Since April 2nd he’s slashing .338/.456/600 with a home run, two triples, ten doubles, 14 runs scored, and a pair of stolen bases. Are the Rangers a great lineup? Not really, but the Rangers feel comfortable letting the 36-year-old bat leadoff which is beneficial when Joey Gallo can drive him in. Choo is a guy who definitely deserves more than 42% ownership.
12 Team Leagues
Niko Goodrum (Multiple Positions – Detroit Tigers) FAAB Bid: 5-10% - Goodrum is widely available and he’s basically eligible at every position on Yahoo save for pitcher and catcher. He only has two home runs on the season, but he does have eight doubles and he’s logged two stolen bases heading into Tuesday’s doubleheader against the Red Sox (Update: he stole his third base in Game 1 of yesterday’s doubleheader). He’s under 50% owned on Yahoo and under 20% owned on ESPN. He does a little bit of everything and can play pretty much anywhere despite being eligible at just first and second base on ESPN. He’s one of my favorite adds this week.
Luke Weaver (Starting Pitcher – Arizona Diamondbacks) FAAB Bid: 3-7% - It looks like Weaver is finally hitting his stride after a rough first outing. He has collected 24 strikeouts over his last 17.2 innings of work while walking just two batters. He’s lowered his ERA to 3.33 and his FIP is 2.56 with a 3.15 xFIP. He should definitely be streamed this weekend in his second start against the Cubs at home and you can hang on to him beyond this week as well.
Roenis Elías (Relief Pitcher – Seattle Mariners) FAAB Bid: 5% - Normally if it was abundantly clear who was getting the saves outright for a bullpen I’d throw more money at a player. However, the Mariners have been tough to read. It was clear in spring training they liked Hunter Strickland for the role even though it didn’t seem he was the best option in their bullpen. Then it looked like Anthony Swarzak could step up, and now it looks like it could be Elias’ job. I’d say Swarzak is still the guy to own. He got the last save for Seattle on April 20th and his strikeout potential is better than Elias’. But Swarzak may not be as available as Elias hence why Elias’ name makes the article for 12-team leagues. Elias does have four saves in the month of April and if Seattle goes with a committee approach then he may be in line for a few more opportunities.
Mike Zunino (Catcher – Tampa Bay Rays) FAAB Bid: 10% - Up until April 8th Zunino was slashing just .069/.129/.069 and I won’t lie, I dropped him anywhere I owned him. It’s not that I hate Zunino. I drafted him in a couple leagues but I give catchers a short leash. Zunino’s the one exception where I wish I didn’t jump ship so quickly. Since April 10th he’s slashing .429/.448/.893 with a pair of home runs (both have come in his last two games), a triple, and five doubles and in four of his last five games he’s driven in multiple RBI. My lone concern with Zunino is that he’s done most of this damage in the eight-hole in Tampa’s lineup. I’m not entirely confident he can keep this up, but we’ve seen him go on tears before during his tenure with Seattle. For now, he’s a great option to grab off waivers if you need catcher help.
15+ Team Leagues
Jerad Eickhoff (Starting Pitcher – Philadelphia Phillies) FAAB Bid: 0-2% - I’m not entirely sure what to make of Eickhoff so far. He’s made two appearances so far: one was a start in Colorado and the other was a four-inning save against the Mets. In the start in Coors he did okay by Coors’ standards. He worked six innings giving up four earned runs, but he struck out eight. On the season he has 14 strikeouts in ten innings of work and he’s generated a respectable 13.3% swinging strike rate. His next matchup comes on Friday at home against Miami. At the very worst you can stream him for his next start and expect a handful of strikeouts to take you into the weekend.
Cam Bedrosian , Hansel Robles , or Ty Buttrey (Relief Pitchers – Los Angeles Angels) FAAB Bid: 0-3% - This is more of a speculative addition, but really anybody in the Angels bullpen not named Cody Allen is a speculative pickup. The Angels brought Allen in to be their closer and earlier this week they said they were committed to him in that role. But he’s been terrible this year. He hasn’t recorded a save since April 13th and he’s surrendered three home runs in his last three appearances. In those last three appearances he’s recorded a total of three outs. So I was pretty high on Buttrey towards the end of last season and was disappointed he wouldn’t get the closer job to start 2019. But any of the guys listed above are worth a speculative add if you can spare the roster space in hopes that Cody Allen lands on the Injured List or just loses the job outright. They’ve all performed well to start with a few hiccups, but their hiccups pale in comparison to the crap Allen’s dished out lately.
Renato Núñez (Third Baseman – Baltimore Orioles) FAAB Bid: 3-5% - Nunez has logged almost 100 plate appearances this season so I’m willing to start taking his numbers seriously. He’s clubbed six home runs to start the season while three of them came in last Saturday’s doubleheader against the Twins. He’s scored 15 runs and driven in 17 RBI and the O’s love to hit him cleanup. Baltimore’s not a great team, but Nunez has been good enough to be added in deeper leagues. He does take a hit in points leagues because of his 23.7% strikeout rate, but that’s what you get with guys who swing for the fences.
Avisaíl García (Outfielder – Tampa Bay Rays) FAAB Bid: 2-4% - If you need outfield depth then give Garcia a look. He hasn’t blown the roof off the Trop, but his numbers have been solid and steady. It’s hard to believe that he’s still only 27 years old because it feels like he’s been around for so long. He’s hitting .275 on the season with nine extra base hits (four home runs, a triple, and four doubles) with 11 runs scored, ten RBI, and a pair of stolen bases. The Rays regularly hit him fourth, fifth, or sixth so he’s not being buried in the bottom of the order.
Cole Tucker (Shortstop – Pittsburgh Pirates) FAAB Bid: 0-1% - This is mostly a deep league flyer you can take if struggling at shortstop. Tucker is a Pittsburgh prospect with some decent speed, but he won’t wow you with his power. But in his first three games he recorded three hits, two runs, and two RBI. He led off in his first two games and then hit eighth for the last two. It’ll be frustrating to monitor where the Bucs put him in the lineup, and if he cools off or fails to get on base you can drop him at no cost since he’s a cheap acquisition.