If you enjoy watching an endless parade of fantasy baseball prospects being called up to the major leagues, this has been a great 2023 MLB season. Every week, at least one prospect has been getting the call making it very busy when it comes to waiver wire pickups.
Unfortunately, not everyone can make a big impact like Elly De La Cruz, but many have contributed good things for fantasy baseball teams, even if it wasn't long term. Orioles infielder Jordan Westburg was the latest to get the call and he won't be able to be added in some leagues until the weekend. Henry Davis, Gavin Williams, Luis Matos, Bo Naylor and David Hamilton could still be available in some leagues, too. There are a few other rookies that didn't have the big pedigree and started slowly that could be on the waiver wire.
While the rookies get the buzz, don't sleep on veterans like Joey Votto and Joc Pederson. Consistently hitting the waiver wire is key to getting a championship. Playing the matchups every week and maximizing the roster spots will ultimately be the difference. It's summer time and while fun is important, never take a week off and look to improve the roster all the time if you play in a daily league.
Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pickups – Hitters
Jordan Westburg, SS, Baltimore Orioles (30% – Yahoo, 6.6% – ESPN)
The latest prospect to get the call is Westburg, who should play every day. He played second base and batted seventh in his debut on Monday, going 1-for-4 with a run, RBI and a walk. In 67 games at Triple-A this season, he hit .295/.372/.567 with 57 runs, 18 home runs, 54 RBIs and six stolen bases.
Joey Votto 1B, Cincinnati Reds (34% – Yahoo, 15.9% – ESPN)
Votto is 39 and coming off a season in which he batted .205 with a .689 OPS. Just two years ago, Votto hit 36 home runs with a .938 OPS. Votto has looked good since returning, going 5-for-18 with three home runs and seven RBIs. Two of the home runs went at least 415 feet. The Reds have an excellent lineup and play in a great hitters park. It's worth adding Votto to see if he has something left.
Joc Pederson, OF, San Francisco Giants (32% – Yahoo, 9.1% – ESPN)
Since coming off the injured list, Pederson has been hitting. He's not going to hit for a high average, but he can provide power. He is 18-for-58 (.310) with 17 runs, three home runs and 12 RBIs with a
.403 wOBA. Pederson is hitting .266/.380/.496 with 29 runs, eight home runs and 30 RBIs in 139 at-bats.
Yainer Diaz, C, Houston Astros (19% – Yahoo, 5.4% – ESPN)
Davis has been mentioned here several times, but he should be on more rosters while he's playing every day. Diaz has been great in June, batting .323 with seven runs, five home runs and 11 RBIs in 65 at-bats. He is hitting .276 with 16 runs, seven home runs and 16 RBIs in 127 at-bats.
Maikel Garcia, SS/3B, Kansas City Royals (36% – Yahoo, 6.4% – ESPN)
Garcia has been mentioned here before when he first was called up to the majors. He was quiet early on, but has been productive. He is batting .280/.335/.385 with 20 runs, two home runs, and 11 stolen bases in 161 at-bats. He has six stolen bases over the last nine games and the dual eligibility helps. He has a 50.4% hard hit rate and is in the 97th percentile of chase rate.
Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pitchers
Bryan Woo, SP, Seattle Mariners (25% – Yahoo, 7.3% – ESPN)
The overall ERA of 5.09 might be why these numbers are low and it's wrong. While rookie pitchers can be inconsistent, Woo had one bad start in his debut on the road against the Rangers where most pitchers struggle. He allowed seven hits and six runs in two innings. In his last three starts in 15.2 innings, he has allowed nine hits, four earned runs, four walks and struck out 21. Woo has a 33.8% strikeout rate and a 2.45 xERA.
Kyle Bradish, SP, Baltimore Orioles (31% – Yahoo, 11% – ESPN)
Bradish should be on more rosters. He's coming off one of his best starts on the season, going seven innings and allowing two hits, two runs, two walks and struck out seven. Over his last nine starts, the right-hander has a 2.92 ERA and 0.99 WHIP. In June, Bradish has a 3.54 ERA with a 31:6 K:BB ratio over 28 innings.
Griffin Canning, SP, Los Angeles Angels (28% – Yahoo, 13.1% – ESPN)
Canning is coming off an impressive start at Coors Field. He pitched six scoreless innings and allowed four hits, no walks and struck out seven. In his last six starts, he has pitched 36 innings and allowed 26 hits, nine earned runs, walked six and struck out 37. He is 6-2 with a 3.99 ERA, 1.16 WHIP and a 62:17 K:BB ratio in 65.1 innings. Canning is using his fastball less and getting more swings and misses with his slider, changeup and curve.
Jaime Barria, SP, Los Angeles Angels (12% – Yahoo, 2.4% – ESPN)
Barria can at least be streamed in deeper formats in the right matchups. His next start is at home against the White Sox on Wednesday, an offense that is struggling to score in June. Barria has made 16 appearances, including four starts, and has a 2.14 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and a 40:14 K:BB ratio in 46.1 innings. He has pitched at least five innings in three of his four starts and allowed two earned runs or fewer in each of them.
Kenta Maeda, SP, Minnesota Twins (28% – Yahoo, 4.8% – ESPN)
Maeda returned from injury after missing two months and pitched well on Friday. Against the Tigers, Maeda pitched five scoreless innings and allowed five hits, two walks and struck out eight while throwing 83 pitches. The velocity was up and he might finally be healthy. Before going on the injured list, he allowed 11 hits and 10 runs over three innings, which is why he has a 6.86 ERA.
Daniel Hudson, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers (2% – Yahoo, 2.8% – ESPN)
Evan Phillips has received most of the save chances for the Dodgers this season, but he has also been used in the seventh and eighth innings. There was belief Hudson might have been the Dodgers closer, but he wasn't ready to begin the season coming off a torn ACL. He's currently on a rehab assignment and expected to be back on Friday after a final rehab appearance on Tuesday. During his rehab, Hudson has pitched 8.1 scoreless innings with 13 strikeouts and one walk. Hudson could get some saves and could be added in deeper formats.
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