With the calendar getting close to September, we are really entering crunch time in the fantasy baseball season. Stay on top of your league by continuously navigating the fantasy baseball rankings as well as our fantasy baseball rest of season projections to put forth the best possible fantasy baseball lineup. Let us dig into some options that can help on the MLB waiver wire with some players expected to, or that already have, rise up the fantasy baseball rankings. There are potential closers in the mix here, some exciting young players, a pitcher taking the mound twice, and some “boring” veterans. 




Waiver Wire Hitters

Manuel Margot, OF (TB); FAAB Bid: 2%

Since making his return from the Injured List, Margot has hits in three of five games going seven of 21 over that stretch with five runs scored and four RBI. The outfielder is batting .305 for the season and while he does not show exceptional power or speed, Margot contributes just enough in each category to be relevant. I would expect Tampa Bay to continue rolling out the outfielder most days, especially in the heart of the batting order as he continues to produce at the plate. 


Donovan Solano, 2B/3B/1B (CIN); FAAB 2-3%

While cannot argue with results or the lineup, Solano is certainly one unlikely cleanup hitter, but after Joey Votto went on the Injured List for the remainder of season the veteran utility player has lived up to the billing. Solano has hits in six of his last seven games, and five of those have been of the multi-hit variety. In 194 plate appearances this season, Solano is now hitting .335 with 21 RBI and 19 runs scored which includes a .361 mark in August prior to Friday’s game. I am not sure when Solano will cool off, but he is going to continue to get every opportunity to produce and it is hard to ignore what we are seeing out of him. 


Riley Greene, OF (DET); FAAB Bid: 3-4%

At the beginning of the season, the initial thought was that there would be no way that Greene would be available in 75% of Yahoo leagues at this point. However, adjusting to the major leagues is far from easy, and there have been some bumps in the road for the outfielder, although if look at Greene through the lens of his last five games, things have been going pretty well for him. Greene has a modest five game hitting streak with multiple hits in four of those games which includes a three for five effort on Friday with three runs scored, a home run, and four RBI. The rookie’s batting average is up to .246 on the season, but this really a situation where we are going based on the track record and recent success. 


Drew Waters, OF (KC); FAAB Bid: 1-2%

Previously known as a top prospect with the Braves, Waters’ stock took a hit recently and a few months ago he was traded to Kansas City essentially for a draft choice. With the season winding down, the Royals are taking a look to see what they have in Waters and the outfielder has picked up hits in each of last two games. Waters did earn his promotion with a solid performance in 31 games at Triple-A following the trade as he hit .295 and showed off a power speed combination with seven home runs and 13 RBI. The tools are not the problem and while we do have to watch the strikeouts, Waters is worth a closer look here. 


Joc Pederson, OF (SF); FAAB Bid: 1%

While it has been a week since Pederson last went deep, in Coors Field too, the outfielder does have the ability to get hot and rip off home runs in bunches. At this point in the season, there is clear value to that, and with a .257 batting average, 18 home runs and 48 RBI in 334 plate appearances through action on Thursday. Pay special attention to when the Giants are slated to face a plethora of right-handed pitching as Pederson has hit 16 of his 18 home runs while enjoying the platoon advantage to go along with a .262 batting compared to .225 against southpaws. 




Waiver Wire Pitchers

Matt Manning (DET); FAAB Bid: 2-3%

Manning is a pitcher already on my radar as a young, talented option, but the fact that he is taking the mound twice this week ups the ante. Over his last three starts, Manning has 19 strikeouts against just two walks in 18 innings while posting a 2.50 ERA. In seven starts overall at the big-league level this year the former top prospect has a 2.37 ERA (3.55 xERA) while doing a good job of limiting home runs at a rate of 6.1% per fly ball. Opposing batters have a hard-hit rate of just 29.2% against Manning along with just a 6.2% barrel-rate. 


Nick Lodolo (CIN); FAAB Bid: 1%

Lodolo’s next start coming against Washington makes the rookie a perfect streaming option. While there is some volatility in the rookie’s overall body of work, it is a matchup that should benefit him as the Nationals are one of the worst offenses in the league. Control is an issue for Lodolo with 4.20 per nine innings, but he also does a solid job of getting out of trouble as evidenced by his 77 strikeouts in 60 innings of work. On an overall basis, Lodolo has a solid 4.35 ERA and going all the way down to his 3.82 xFIP, there is upside in play as it is hard to expect his .373 BABIP to stick around all season. 


Andrés Muñoz (SEA); FAAB Bid: 1%

This is the time of the year where we really take any production, we can get from where ever we can get it. While chasing wins always holds value, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find them and given a lot of the available starting pitching options, the risk to your ratios simply is not worth the possible reward. Munoz caught my attention by picking up his third save of the season but I am really here for the 14.47 strikeouts per nine innings and the 2.47 ERA (1.81 xERA).


Rafael Montero (HOU); FAAB Bid: 3%

We have seen Montero in and around the closer’s role at times this season and with Ryan Pressly on the Injured List nursing a neck injury, he is back in line for saves. The right-hander picked up his eighth save of the season on Thursday, and with Houston continuing to play strong baseball, he should have no issues continuing to receive opportunities. There is a lot to like here as Montero strikes out more than a batter per inning while only allowing 0.34 home runs per nine innings and generating a 54.1% ground ball rate on his way to a 2.56 ERA (2.99 xERA). 


Adam Ottavino (NYM); FAAB Bid: 1% 

Edwin Díaz is not going anywhere, and nor should he. That is not for debate, but as the Mets are clearly taking the long game and getting ready for October, part of that is utilizing their best reliever in the eighth inning against the opposing team’s best hitters when applicable. With the save then up for grabs, those opportunities could very well go Ottavino as it did on Thursday. The right-hander has been the next best reliever for the Mets and that could leave to more saves down the stretch as he also some experience in the role picking up 11 saves last season. With a 2.13 ERA and 10.84 strikeouts per nine innings this season over 50.2, Ottavino has certainly earned the right to pitch in high leverage situations. 




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