Fantasy Baseball Waiver Advice: July 28
Dan Malin is here to look around the waiver wire to point out some players worth grabbing off the waiver wire!
It’s been a rough start to the week for MLB. Hopefully you didn’t invest in the Miami Marlins too much. I don’t see why you would. However, this shortened season definitely sucks for those who drafted Yankees and Phillies players since they’ve had their current series postponed. The outlook is bleak if anyone cares for my two cents. I imagine things getting worse before they get better. Alas, I’ll dive into today’s waiver options. This pandemic has made for a completely different way to approach the game so be vigilant in your waiver claims. I’m going to avoid mentioning the same players in Saturday’s article so if you missed it, check it out here. It’s just too easy to double-back and mention the same names, so we’ll keep this one a little more fresh with some newbies.
Oliver Drake (TB – RP) I’m kicking off the waiver wire column with Oliver Drake . He’s widely available in most leagues. He’s five-percent owned in ESPN leagues and apparently he’s still less than ten-percent owned on most sites. After notching the team’s first save of the season on Saturday he followed it up with another save Tuesday night. Nick Anderson , the guy everybody thought would get the Tampa Bay saves, has none so far. Interestingly enough, Anderson has been used earlier in games and has been working to get four-or-five outs in his two appearances. It’s a bold strategy by Kevin Cash but it’s worked out so far. Drake’s appeared in both save opportunities so get ahead of the curve and give this guy an add.
Kyle Lewis (SEA – OF) Lewis’ ownership has skyrocketed the past few days. If you’ve noticed on ESPN his ownership has spiked to 50.4% ownership. He has a hit in all five games this season, including a pair of home runs. He’s been hitting right in the heart of the order, and for as much crap as people give the M’s offense, they’ve scored more runs than the Yankees… I hope you’re able to pick up on my facetiousness. I mentioned this plenty of times in my last article, take advantage of streaking hitters. He’s a must add right now.
Dansby Swanson (ATL – SS) Similar to Kyle Lewis, Swanson has a hit in all five games to start this brief season. He also has eight strikeouts, which is a little unsightly but in general he’s seeing the ball well. Even in previous seasons when I’ve included Swanson in Waiver Wire columns, I’ve tried to note that I don’t like his place in the batting order. But in the last few games he’s hit sixth, but has still been presented with opportunities to drive in runs (he has seven RBI), so he’s producing. And this is a position without the greatest depth so jump on him if you need middle-infield help.
Chris Taylor (LAD – 2B, SS, OF) Taylor is a chalk option to add off waivers and his name has popped up everywhere. The opportunity is there since Gavin Lux was sent down prior to the season starting. Which is whatever; more power to the Dodgers, I suppose. Some of us who invested draft capital in him would like a word with their front office though. But Taylor’s benefitted from the seat at the table left vacant by Lux. And he offers position flexibility. Has he done a lot with the opportunity so far? Through seven innings he has a pair of walks so far and he’s in the fifth spot tonight in a very loaded lineup.
Anthony Bass (TOR – RP) Bass’ name is coming up in several conversations. I’m a little more bullish, but I understand the importance of finding saves off waivers. And with Ken Giles sidelined on the IL, Bass is a logical waiver wire acquisition. He notched his first save of the season Monday night and he’s worked 3.1 innings (entering Tuesday) with a pair of strikeouts and he’s allowed one hit. He really only relies on his fastball and slider. The fastball has decent velocity, but it’s not amazing. He’s a fine add given the bizarre circumstances of the season, plus Giles is sidelined.
Griffin Canning (LAA – SP) Canning might be my favorite deep-league find of the week aside from Drake. He’s not a great option in points formats. The strikeout potential can negate the hits and walks, but he’s still prone to bad outings and you have a better shot at masking potential deficiencies in roto or categories leagues. He racked up seven strikeouts in 4.2 innings of work against Oakland Monday night. His “stuff” looked okay, but he’s got a tough test this weekend against the Astros.
Chris Bassitt (SEA – SP) Bassitt will probably get another mention in this article since his next start isn’t until Sunday. But I think it doesn’t hurt to keep him in mind. Oakland took a more cautious approach with his pitch count Monday night, but he struck out five in four innings of work while walking just one. His performance warrants enough recognition for the start this weekend… Against the Mariners whose offense I ironically praised earlier in the article… Can’t quite stress the sarcasm enough, but I know some of you picked up on it.
Colin Moran (PIT – 3B) Don’t be a moron, pick up Moran! I thought of that joke (which I’m sure has been used previously) earlier today while at work and was giddy with excitement as it left my fingertips. He’s hitting the ball pretty well and surprisingly only 22% owned on ESPN. He went 0-for-2 on Tuesday night, but he did log a pair of walks with a RBI and a run. He’s hitting right in the middle of the lineup and he’s producing. Get yourself some Colin Moran , folks.
Tyler Chatwood (CHC – SP) Tread carefully with this option. Folks are flocking to waivers in deep leagues to add this guy because of one good start. And don’t get me wrong, he looked pretty damn good. But if I had a dollar for every time I was screwed by Tyler Chatwood … I don’t know, realistically I might have nine bucks. But he has his next start coming Friday against the Pirates. We’ve seen a lot of ball clubs take it easy with starters (like Chris Bassitt ) and not let them finish five innings. Chatwood was allowed to pitch six innings and collect eight strikeouts against Milwaukee. And that’s a pretty loaded lineup. He kept the walks down which have been a BIG issue for him in previous years. Like I said, tread carefully, but he might be worth adding next week.
Greg Holland (KC – RP) Holland might be the guy the Royals hand the ball over to late in the game. But on the other hand, he might not be. Rich analysis, I know. Holland got the save on Saturday in an extra innings effort. You like to think Mike Matheny would trust a guy with 200+ saves on his resume, but then again Holland pitched the seventh inning in Tuesday night’s loss. It’s a situation worth monitoring, but Holland’s off to a strong start. He’s worth picking up in deeper leagues if you can afford the roster spot and roll the dice on a guy who could be the team’s closer.
Hanser Alberto (BAL – 2B, 3B) If the O’s season ever resumes, Alberto’s a nice gem for deeper leagues and he offers middle-and-corner infield eligibility. He went 6-for-12 over the weekend against Boston and proved to be a solid DFS play. Thanks to the guys making the Playbooks last weekend for adding him in there. He’s not the sexiest name especially with Baltimore’s games getting cancelled at the moment. However, that means they may have four games to make up as this short season carries on. And that means more plate appearances for this guy.
Spencer Turnbull (DET – SP) Turnbull may be a short-tern add for this week. In his 2020 debut, he pitched five innings of one-run ball while striking out eight. He did allow four walks and three hits, which doesn’t help his WHIP by any means. But the strikeouts are a solid sign. I normally wouldn’t recommend a pitcher who went 3-17 the year prior, but he has potential. He averaged almost a strikeout per inning a year ago and his velocity is decent. He just faced the Reds in their own ballpark and looked good. He gets a second chance to shut them down later this week in Comerica Park.