Fantasy Baseball Waiver Advice: June 19
Dan Malin is here to look around the Fantasy Baseball waiver wire to point out some intriguing players to grab off waivers!
10 Team Leagues
Howie Kendrick 1B, 2B, 3B WSH; FAAB Bid: 12-15% - Depending on how big of a need any position in the infield is, Kendrick can likely fill it. He’s been solid for the Nationals this year hitting .333 with a .985 OPS. He has a dozen home runs and 43 RBI and he hits right in the middle of the order. He also provides position flexibility and in fantasy baseball that is certainly something to consider when rostering a player. Starting next week the Nationals have a nice two-week run against some weak pitching rotations in the Marlins, Tigers, and Royals so he could get even hotter heading into the All-Star break.
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. 2B, SS, OF TOR; FAAB Bid: 5-8% - Gurriel is similar to Kendrick in that he has flexibility, but at different spots as evidenced above. He’s been swinging a hot bat since June 7th to the tune of a .350 batting average and a 1.111 OPS. He has five multi-hit games in that span with four home runs, a triple, and a double. He’s comfortably hitting in the heart of the order and he fits in perfectly with the other big bats coming out of Toronto, one of which we’ll write about (again) down below.
Mike Fiers SP OAK; FAAB Bid: 3% - *Insert proverbial eyeroll here* I know I know, Mike Fiers is a bit of a burner in fantasy baseball. In previous years I recommended him as a streaming option and was made a fool of by this buffoon. But he’s recorded a quality start in six straight trips to the mound and dating back to April 26th he’s 5-1 with a 2.70 ERA and a 2.27 BB/9. Now to counter the argument he also has a 4.61 FIP and 5.23 xFIP so regression is likely in store. His next start comes Saturday at home against Tampa Bay so I won’t hold it against you if you pass on him here. Other guys you may want to consider are Dallas Keuchel , Julio Teheran , Lance Lynn , and Nick Pivetta if Fiers isn’t quite your cup of tea.
Héctor Neris RP PHI; FAAB Bid: 12-15% - I’ll be brief because I’ve spoken about Neris ad nausea and like clockwork he got lit up Friday night to the tune of three earned runs and was able to only record two outs. He did rebound Saturday night to get the save against the Braves. He now has 15 on the year and for whatever reason he’s still available in over 40% of ESPN leaves and a quarter of Yahoo leagues.
12 Team Leagues
Cavan Biggio 2B TOR; FAAB Bid: 8% - I’d love to bid a little more on Biggio, but the consistency isn’t there just yet. That being said he’s on a bit of a hot streak over his last six games. In that brief span he has eight hits, four of which have been home runs, along with seven runs scored and seven RBI. It’s nice that the Blue Jays haven’t given up on him by demoting him since he’s only hitting .222, but perhaps the .856 OPS is keeping him around. Yes, he has boasted some nice power early on and in 77 plate appearances he touts an 18.2% walk rate. Even in a small sample size, that’s pretty impressive for a rookie and in the month of June he has a 22.4% walk rate. Expect the ownership to spike if he keeps the power run up, but while I normally downgrade some players for points league, Biggio actually gets a mild upgrade because of the walks.
Merrill Kelly SP ARI; FAAB Bid: 6% - I’m not over the moon with Kelly, but he’s looked good his last few starts. Prior to Tuesday night’s nightmare against Colorado he had won his last three starts and generated a 0.81 ERA over that span. Add in 18 strikeouts and just two walks and he’s been pretty effective. Now last night he did get roughed up against Colorado to the tune of five earned runs over six innings. He’s a two-start pitcher this week and while the first start has come and gone he’s definitely in play for the second start against San Francisco at home. He doesn’t have the best heat, but his cutter has been very good as of late and he mixes in four pitches evenly.
Ian Kennedy RP KC; FAAB Bid: 8-12% - I don’t like that Ian Kennedy is the closer because I was hoping for that honor to be bestowed on Richard Lovelady … I’m a big fan of the name, what can I say? Regardless, Kennedy’s been solid. And that’s weird to say because the Royals have only won 25 games, but since May 30th Kennedy has six saves, and a 1.42 ERA. Additionally in those 6.1 innings of relief work he has a dozen strikeouts and he’s allowed just one free pass. The save opportunities may be few and far between, but Kennedy is getting the high leverage opportunities late in games so if he’s out there he’s worth poaching especially if you need saves.
15+ Team Leagues
Oscar Mercado OF CLE; FAAB Bid: 5% - In deeper leagues or five-outfielder formats Mercado definitely deserves a look. Since June 6th he has three home runs, 12 runs scored, nine RBI, four stolen bases and an OPS over 1.000. I’d love it if he were walking more, but beggars can’t be choosers in a deeper league. His recent hot streak has brought his batting average up over .300 and it looks like he’s getting a little more aggressive on the base path. Don’t forget that from 2015-2018 in the minors he stole at least 30 bags in each season. 30 is a tall order this deep into the season, but 15-20 is definitely on the table for him.
Colin Moran 2B, 3B PIT; FAAB Bid: 2-4% - Moran is currently about 10% owned on Yahoo and less than 5% owned on ESPN. That’s a bit too low for a guy who could hit 20 home runs and drive in 70-80 runs. In a deep league you’ll definitely take that kind of production. Don’t ever be too surprised if he sits against lefties, he’s a career .216 hitter off LHP’s but when he starts against righties you can put him into your deep league roster.
Logan Allen SP SD; FAAB Bid: 0-1% - Padres pitching prospect is slated for a Tuesday night start against Milwaukee tossing seven shutout innings striking out five, and giving up three hits and two walks. It was a great debut and I’m absolutely recommending him as a streaming option for his second start on the road against the Orioles. Allen has had a forgettable year in Triple-A with a 5.15 ERA and he’s been susceptible to the long ball. However, he averaged nearly a strikeout per inning in the minors and even in the deepest of leagues he’ll get some consideration with a matchup against the O’s on the horizon.