It’s time to break out the Hardware, or at least toss a little love in the direction of some of the first half gems that were found on the Waiver Wire. Adding any number of these players could prove to be the difference maker come years end!
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John Hicks, 1B/C, DET (CBS: 3% owned Week 7) The injury to Miguel Cabrera opened up a window of opportunity and path to increased at-bats, and Hicks has taken full advantage of the situation. Nine homers, 32 RBI, and a .278 BA help greatly when one is looking at filling the role of a second catcher in two-catcher formats.
Honorable Mention: John Ryan Murphy, C, ARZ (CBS: 8% owned Week 11), Yan Gomes, C, CLE (CBS: 15% owned Week 6), Nick Hundley, C, SF (CBS: 3% owned Week 7), Elias Diaz, C, PIT (CBS: 1% owned Week 7)
Jesus Aguilar, 1B, MIL (CBS: 10% owned Week 6): And your NL home run leader at the All Star break, with 24, is Jesus Aguilar. In Week Six there was considerable doubt that Aguilar would have a job, with the crowded situation in Milwaukee. If you hit, and Aguilar has hit a ton, they will find room. We’ll toss our support behind either Aguilar, Max Muncy, or Ross Stripling as the choice for the first half Waiver Wire MVP.
Honorable Mention: C.J. Cron, 1B, TAM (CBS: 10% owned Week 1), Yuli Gurriel, 1B, HOU (CBS: 51% owned Week 3), Brandon Belt, 1B, SF (CBS: 50% owned Week 5), Mitch Moreland, 1B, BOS (CBS: 37% owned Week 8), Jake Bauers, 1B, TAM (CBS: 18% owned Week 12)
Jurickson Profar, 2B, TEX (CBS: 11% owned Week 4): It has been a long ride, but Jurickson Profar is finally healthy and getting the opportunity to demonstrate the skills that at one point had him considered to be one of the top prospects in the game. For those that took the chance early in the season, the nine homer, 46 RBI, 50 runs scored, and eight stolen base first half are the rewards.
Honorable Mention: Daniel Robertson, 2B, TAM (CBS: 2% owned Week 5), Daniel Descalso, 1B/2B/3B/OF, ARZ (CBS: 29% owned Week 13)
Max Muncy, 1B/3B/OF (CBS: 54% owned Week 12): By Week 12, Muncy was already well on his way to being one of the best of the first half best. When you smash 15 homers between the beginning of June and the All Star break, numbers that leave you in fourth place overall in the NL, you have to be one of both the biggest surprises and most coveted Waiver Wire adds of the season.
Honorable Mention: Miguel Andujar, 3B, NYY (CBS: 39% owned Week 5), Christian Villanueva, 3B, SD (CBS: 13% owned Week 3)
Johan Camargo, SS/3B, ATL (CBS: 7% owned Week 9): Very quietly, Camargo has enjoyed a very solid first half. Those nine homers, 39 RBI, and .756 OPS, the bulk of which were accumulated after the beginning of May, has helped teams playing in 15 and 20-team formats.
Honorable Mention: Jose Iglesias, SS, DET (CBS: 11% owned Week 9)
Shin-Soo Choo, OF, TEX (CBS: 45% owned Week 3): A tough and close call, but the 18 first half homers combined with the 54 runs scored and outstanding .405 OBP, makes Choo our choice as the best buy amongst outfielders in the first half.
Matt Adams, 1B/OF, WAS (CBS: 27% owned Week 7): Fifteen big flies to go along with 39 RBI is a solid first half. The fact that Adams stepped up, while Ryan Zimmerman stepped away, has been huge for Washington.
Honorable Mention: Dustin Fowler, OF, OAK (CBS: 16% owned Week 8), Mallex Smith, OF, TAM (CBS: 20% owned Week 4), Albert Almora, OF, CHC (CBS: 20% owned Week 6), Alen Hanson, 2B/OF, SF (CBS: 1% owned Week 6), Brandon Nimmo, OF, NYM (CBS: 6% owned Week 9), Juan Soto, OF, WAS (CBS: 43% owned Week 9), Gorkys Hernandez, OF, SF (CBS: 2% owned Week 10), Nick Williams, OF, PHI (CBS: 13% owned Week 11), Jon Jay, OF, ARZ (CBS: 38% owned Week 14), Teoscar Hernandez, OF, TOR (CBS: 13% owned Week 4)
Ross Stripling, SP/RP, LAD (CBS: 7% owned Week 9) How does one emerge as the top pitcher on the Waiver Wire in the first half. Try posting an 8-2 won/loss record with 108 strikeouts in 95 1/3 IP. The 2.08 ERA also helps a tad. No one, yes no one, saw this level of success in the cards, but those that gambled on his hot start will be more than likely sitting at or near the top of the pitching categories.
Andrew Heaney, SP, LAA (CBS: 43% owned Week 9): Finally healthy, Heaney is poised to top his all-time high in innings pitched with his first start of the second half. A solid 3.78 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, and 102 strikeouts in 102 1/3 IP have been a huge factor in keeping the Angels in the playoff hunt in the AL West.
Anibal Sanchez, SP, ATL (CBS: 17% owned Week 13) We haven’t seen numbers like this from Anibal Sanchez since 2013, when he plied his trade with the Tigers. In 11 starts with the Braves, the now 34-year-old has posted a 2.60 ERA and 1.02 WHIP. His 2018 renaissance has been a huge factor in the Braves rise into a playoff contender in the NL East.
Honorable Mention: Joey Lucchesi, SP, SD (CBS: 14% owned Week 3), Zach Eflin, SP, PHI (CBS: 42% owned Week 8), Taylor Mahle, SP, CIN (CBS: 55% owned Week 4), Jose Urena, SP, MIA (CBS: 32% owned Week 4), Jaime Barria, SP, LAA (CBS: 4% owned Week 5), Eric Lauer, SP, SD (CBS: 3% owned Week 5), Freddy Peralta, SP, MIL (CBS: 4% owned Week 8), Walker Buehler, SP, LAD (CBS: 39% owned Week 5), Carlos Rodon, SP, CWS (CBS: 31% owned Week 9), Shane Bieber, SP, CLE (CBS: 7% owned Week 10), Steven Matz, SP, NYM (CBS: 47% owned Week 10), Dereck Rodriguez, SP, SF (CBS: 5% owned Week 15)
bHector Rondon, RP, HOU (CBS: 4% owned Week 12): Yeah, we know that Shane Greene has eleven more saves than Rondon at the break, but it’s hard to ignore the far superior ERA and strikeout rates that Rondon posted in the first half. Ken Giles has been dispatched to the Minors for eternity, if not longer, leaving those early buyers on Rondon with not only a great first half in the bank, but also now owning the ninth inning man for one of the best teams in baseball down the stretch.
Honorable Mention: Shane Greene, RP, DET (CBS: 59% owned Week 3), Kyle Barraclough, RP, MIA (CBS: 23% owned Week 11), Seranthony Dominguez, RP, PHI (CBS: 4% owned Week 8), Joe Jimenez, RP, DET (CBS: 7% owned Week 5), Brad Brach, RP, BAL (CBS: 31% owned Week 8), Tyler Clippard, RP, TOR (CBS: 35% owned Week 15), Kyle Barraclough, RP, MIA (CBS: 29% owned Week 11), Joakim Soria, RP, CWS (CBS: 23% owned Week 12), Jordan Hicks, RP, STL (CBS: 24% owned Week 13), Jared Hughes, RP, CIN (CBS: 8% owned Week 10)