Two big prospects were called up over the weekend and if they weren't picked up already, they will be popular waiver wire pickups. The Mets couldn't ignore the hot start of Brett Baty at Triple-A and the struggles of Eduardo Escobar making Baty a primary free agent pickup. While Zach Neto might not have a lot of experience, the Angels have stated he will play every day and being eligible at shortstop puts Neto on the Fantasy Baseball waiver wire radar since the position has been decimated by injury. The 2023 MLB season has been one full of injuries and examining the waiver wire options must be done even if you feel the roster doesn't have a cut.
Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Hitters
Brett Baty, 3B, New York Mets (51% – Yahoo, 15.8% – ESPN)
Baty was mentioned in the FAAB article on Saturday, anticipating he would get the call to the majors soon and it was announced on Sunday. Baty was tearing up Triple-A in nine games with a slash line of .400/.500/.886 with five home runs, seven walks and nine strikeouts in 35 at-bats. Baty had the highest exit velocity average in the minors by far and while rookies always come with risk, Baty is worth adding in all leagues.
Zach Neto, SS, Los Angeles Angels (12% – Yahoo, 5.6% – ESPN)
Many were surprised to see Neto get called up so quickly. He was the 13th overall pick last season and hasn't played in Triple-A. He had three home runs and three stolen bases in 27 at-bats at Double-A to start this season. The Angels said he will be the every day shortstop and with the position littered by injuries, Neto is worth adding in deeper formats despite a slow start in his first three games. Neto is 1-for-13 with a run scored and three strikeouts.
Josh Lowe, OF, Tampa Bay Rays (30% – Yahoo, 10.3% – ESPN)
Lowe keeps being mentioned here because he should be owned in a lot more leagues. While he will sit against most left-handers, he has power and speed and plays for an offense consistently putting up a lot of runs. He is 16-for-43 (.372) with nine runs, five doubles, four home runs, 11 RBIs and two stolen bases. Lowe had 14 home runs and 25 stolen bases in 80 games at Triple-A last season. There are many players rostered more than him that shouldn't be.
Rodolfo Castro, 2B/3B, Pittsburgh Pirates (8% – Yahoo, 1.4% – ESPN)
Castro is going to be the everyday shortstop with Oneil Cruz out. Castro has eligibility at shortstop in Yahoo and will get it in other formats soon, which is important because of all the injuries at the position. Castro had 11 home runs and five stolen bases in 71 games last season, but only had a .299 on-base percentage. In 16 games, Castro has a slash line of .325/.438/.475 with five runs, one home run and four RBIs. Castro is swinging at fewer pitches out of the strike zone and making more hard contact.
J.D. Davis, 3B, San Francisco Giants (29% – Yahoo, 7.4% – ESPN)
Davis was initially thought to be a player that would only play against left-handed pitchers, but he has started 10 of the last 11 games. He has a slash line of .311/.360/.600 with seven runs, four home runs, and 13 RBIs in 45 at-bats. Davis has always made hard contact, but lacked consistent playing time. He is in the 94th percentile of hard hit percentage.
Jake Burger, 3B, Chicago White Sox (37% – Yahoo, 24.3% – ESPN)
Burger is more of a short-term pickup since Yoan Moncada should be back soon. Burger is batting .350 with four home runs and seven RBIs in 20 at-bats. He's striking out often, but making a lot of hard contact.
Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pitchers
Taj Bradley, SP, Tampa Bay Rays (30% – Yahoo, 9.9% – ESPN)
Bradley should remain in the rotation for a bit since Jeffrey Springs will be out at least two months. Bradley was solid in his first start, pitching five innings, allowing five hits, three runs, one walk and while striking out eight against the Red Sox. He retired 10 of the first 10 batters he faced and got 18 called strikes on 78 pitches. The Rays offense has been putting up a lot of runs, putting Bradley in a position to win when he pitches well.
Johan Oviedo, SP, Pittsburgh Pirates (24% – Yahoo, 11.2% – ESPN)
After struggling in his first start against the Red Sox, Oviedo has been impressive in his last two starts, pitching into the seventh inning. Against the White Sox, he pitched 6.2 scoreless innings and allowed five hits, no walks and struck out five. In his last start against the Cardinals, Oviedo went seven innings and allowed six hits, one run, one walk and struck out 10. He had 13 swings and misses in that game and averaged 97.2 miles per hour with his fastball.
Alex Wood, SP, San Francisco Giants (10% – Yahoo, 5.3% ESPN)
Wood has a two-start week with a matchup in Miami against a bad Marlins offense and one at home against the Mets, who struggle against left-handed pitching. Wood has pitched 7.2 innings and allowed seven hits, five walks, one run and struck out eight.
Jose Alvarado, RP, Philadelphia Phillies (36% – Yahoo, 13.2% – ESPN)
Alvarado has been the best arm in the Phillies' bullpen by far and the other contenders for the ninth inning have struggled. At some point, Alvarado should get some saves. In 6.1 innings, he has allowed four hits, one run, no walks and struck out 16. The last time Alvarado allowed a run in the regular season was August 23rd.
Brad Boxberger, RP, Chicago Cubs, (20% – Yahoo, 3.6% – ESPN)
Michael Fulmer has blown two saves recently and after the last one, Fulmer pitched the eighth inning the following day and Boxberger pitched the ninth inning and allowed one hit and struck out three to get the save. He has pitched 6.1 innings and allowed four hits, one run, two walks and struck out seven. Fulmer could still be the closer, but now is the time to add Boxberger in case a change is made.
Jose Quijada, RP, Los Angeles Angels (39% – Yahoo, 6.8% ESPN)
Quijada has been one of the better arms in the Angels bullpen, while closer Carlos Estevez has struggled. After pitching a scoreless inning on Monday in the eighth inning, Quijada was replaced by Estevez, who allowed three base runners and a run to get the save. Quijada has two saves and allowed two hits, with one walk and four strikeouts over six scoreless innings.
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