We are past both the All-Star break and the MLB Draft so that can only mean one thing; it is MLB trade deadline time. The MLB rumor mill is filled to the top with potential MLB trades, and the impacts of said transaction will make their presence felt across fantasy baseball. At this point, all we can do is plan for what potentially might happen and search for who could surge up the fantasy baseball rankings. With teams beginning to set themselves up for the pennant race, it is time for us to do the same, so let’s take a look at some options on the MLB waiver wire. 




Waiver Wire Hitters


3B; FAAB Bid: 4%

Alec Bohm did not have the best start to the season, but things have turned around in a big way for the third baseman. Since returning from a three-game absence, Bohm has an eight-game hitting streak which also includes four straight multi-hit games. With a .434 batting average in 53 at bats so far in July, few hitters are hotter than Bohm at this point who has 10 RBI and nine runs scored in that stretch as well. Bohm’s batting average is now up to .293 on the season and we have seen a clear shift in his launch angle as it has jumped from 5.6% to 10.4%. 



1B/3B; FAAB Bid: 3%

It is good to see that the return of Miguel Sanó has not had a negative impact on Juan Miranda’s playing time, and if there was any doubt, he has picked up three hits in each of his last three games while driving in five runs and scoring four times. After going deep on Wednesday, Miranda is hitting .281 with nine home runs and 37 RBI in 215 plate appearances as he is emerging as a run producing threat for the Twins. 



OF; FAAB Bid: 2%

There is no questioning that Kyle Lewis is a talented outfielder. Now staying healthy is an entirely different skill set, and at this point I am unsure whether Lewis will ever truly bring that to the table. At this point though, Lewis is back in action and worth the investment as it appears he will be receiving regular playing time from Seattle. Through 33 plate appearances so far this year, Lewis has six hits (including two home runs) and it is interesting to see what he is capable of and it also helps that is essentially free to find out. 



OF; FAAB Bid: 1-2%

Let’s stick with a very loose interpretation of a theme with Kyle Isbel’s in the outfield as the trade of Andrew Benintendi has opened up additional playing time in Kansas City. With the likely, and impending, trade of Michael Taylor as well, we could be looking at an entirely new outfield in Kansas City, and Isbel figures to be a large part of that. Isbel has struggled with a .221 batting average in 155 plate appearances but he does have some pop and I am really focused on those five stolen bases. 


Miguel Vargas, 3B (LAD); FAAB Bid: 1%

It is clear what the Dodgers focus is, and the thought process here is that Miguel Vargas will have a role in it whether in Los Angeles or as a trade chip. With Vargas’ versatility now being seen at Triple-A in the outfield, I am thinking it will be the former, but at any rate, this would be the time to stash the top prospect if you have the space. Through 89 games so far this season, Vargas has proven to be a five-category contributor as he is hitting .295 with 13 home runs, 67 RBI, 77 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases. Perhaps even more impressive though, is his 12.8% walk rate compared to a strikeout rate of just 14.7%. 


Waiver Wire Pitchers


SP; FAAB Bid: 6%

After taking a break in Triple-A to manage his innings, George Kirby is back with Seattle and has already seen his ownership surge by 9% which brings it to the 40% mark on Yahoo. The right-hander did not miss a beat in his last start as he threw five shutout innings against Texas allowing just two hits and one walk while striking out four. Seattle will continue to manage Kirby’s workload over the remainder of the season (26.2 in the minor leagues and 69.1 with the Mariners) but success has not been too much of an issue with a 3.50 ERA and 8.57 strikeouts per nine innings compared to just 1.30 walks. Home runs are going to be something to keep an eye on, but the stuff is good here and the 11.6-degree launch angle against Kirby could be worse. 



SP; FAAB Bid: 3%

Seeing pitchers have success after making the move to San Francisco should not be surprising these days, and Jakob Junis has been no different. After a stint on the Injured List, he returned to action on Monday against Arizona and promptly threw 4.1 innings of one run ball on three hits and a walk while striking out two. I would expect Junis to pitch deeper into the game in his next start on Saturday against the Cubs, and it should also be another favorable matchup. Through 54.1 innings so far this year, Junis has a 2.98 ERA and 1.01 WHIP while striking out 44 batters. 


SP; FAAB Bid: 1-2%

Mitch Keller now has back-to-back six inning outings under his belt and we have seen his ERA decrease each month so far this season; 6.62 (April), 5.19 (May), 4.10 (June), and 2.88 (July). The right-hander’s strikeout totals have also climbed each month and you could make the argument that we are finally beginning to see what we have been waiting for. Keller’s ERA is down to 4.55 for the season but he also has a 3.85 FIP and is generating a career high 51.4% ground ball rate with opposing hitters sporting a barrel rate of just 7.7% against him. 



RP; FAAB Bid: 3%

At this point, it seems to be a certainty that David Robertson will be wearing a new uniform by this time next week which means that saves will be available in Chicago’s bullpen. With Scott Effross picking up his first career save on Monday; it only seems natural that he moves into the role on a more permanent basis over the remainder of the season. In 43 innings so far this season, Effross has had success with a 2.72 ERA (2.14 xERA) and 1.02 WHIP while striking out 50 batters and he now appears to be in line for some additional saves while at a minimum contributing in three other categories.



RP; FAAB Bid: 1-2%

We know that Oakland is in perpetual state of rebuilding so it would not surprise me in the least to see Lou Trivino on the move over the next few days. That should put Zach Jackson in line for saves, the right-hander has proven to be up to task. Throughout his minor league career Jackson has picked up a small assortment of saves and he has two so far this season. In 9.1 innings to this point in July, opposing hitters are batting just .121 against Jackson and he has yet to allow and earned run while striking out 13. Strikeouts have not been an issue for Jackson this season with 12.69 per nine innings, but we do have to be on the lookout for some control problems (6.46 walks per nine innings). Jackson has yet to allow a home run through 39 innings so far this season and she should note that he only has four walks to this point in July. He has been able to avoid trouble overall with a 2.77 ERA (3.71 xERA/2.53 FIP) but the real value is in the potential saves. 




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