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Waiver Wire – Week 4

Solid Upgrades

Alec Bohm, 3B, PHI (CBS: 51% rostered, ESPN: 18% rostered): Joe Girardi has now committed to Alec Bohm as his everyday third baseman and for good cause. After a slow start, he’s now gone 6-for-21 in his past seven games with one homer and 8 RBI. This move has the potential to be the beginning of a long and successful run for the 25-year-old Bohm.

Vidal Brujan, 2B, TBR (CBS: 21% rostered, ESPN: 2% rostered): This is likely a short-term visit, as the Rays battle Covid-19, but it’s still worth a small bid to find out. Brujan has the potential to help one dominate the stolen base category, and that shouldn’t be ignored.

J.P. Crawford, SS, SEA (CBS: 55% rostered, ESPN: 67% rostered): With two homers and five RBI in his past three games, can we now describe Crawford as a slugging shortstop? He’s batting .348 on the year and back in the leadoff slot. Take advantage of the current hot streak and get him rolling in all formats.

Aaron Hicks, OF, NYY (CBS: 21% rostered, ESPN: 8% rostered): Hicks isn’t exactly piling up the “countables”, yet, but the K/BB ratio of 8/8 does have our attention. He appears to finally be healthy and ready to contribute to a potent Yankee offense.

Ramon Laureano, OF, OAK (CBS: 32% rostered, ESPN: 7% rostered): The 80-game suspension is coming to an end, with Laureano headed to Triple-A Las Vegas to begin a rehab stint in readiness for his activation in the middle of the first week of May. Don’t forget about him in your plans; as we witnessed as recently as last year there is double-digit power and speed potential, and he won’t have any problems finding everyday at-bats in a weak A’s lineup.  

Francisco Mejia, C, TBR (CBS: 21% rostered, ESPN: 4% rostered): Mejia is temporarily sidelined with Covid-19, but that doesn’t mean he should be ignored. Thus far he has posted a .348 BA, two homers, and ten RBI in 23 at-bats. In two-catcher sets, he won’t hurt you, and that’s a huge plus.

Austin Slater, OF, SFG (CBS: 16% rostered, ESPN: not rostered): The Giants placed Steven Duggar on the 60-day IL with a strained oblique, suffered Thursday against the Mets, and Austin Slater appears to be the principal beneficiary. He did produce a solid 12 homers and 15 stolen bases last year in 274 at-bats.

Garrett Whitlock, RP, BOS (CBS: 55% rostered, ESPN: 65% rostered): We mentioned back in Week One that Garrett Whitlock was a solid add, “Whether in a starting or relieving capacity,” and right now, it appears that the rotation is his destiny. On Saturday, he held the Rays to one hit over four shutout innings and chipped in with seven strikeouts. On the season, he is sporting a .66 ERA and an 18/2 K/BB ratio. It’s time he was rostered and active in 100% of all Leagues.

Cheap Options…..for Now

Odubel Herrera, OF, PHI (CBS: 6% rostered, ESPN: 1% rostered): Herrera was dealing with an oblique injury suffered at the end of spring training and was activated Friday. A little pop, a little speed, and until at the very least Mickey Moniak recovers from the fractured right hand and returns from the IL in late May, a steady diet of at-bats.

Cristian Javier, RP/SP, HOU (CBS: 31% rostered, ESPN: 61% rostered): Houston Manager, Dusty Baker, announced that the Astros were moving into a six-man rotation that Cristian Javier would be starting on Wednesday against the Rangers. Javier’s value boosts with this news as he brings his 8 1/3 innings of shutout ball and 12/1 K/BB ratio into a regular turn in the rotation.

Michael King, RP, NYY (CBS: 15% rostered, ESPN: 10% rostered): Middle-relievers have value in today’s game, especially when they have posted a .84 ERA and 18 strikeouts in their first 10 2/3 IP.

Josh Naylor, OF, CLE (CBS: 11% rostered, ESPN: 1% rostered): Josh Naylor is tearing the cover off the ball, like so many other Guardian bats not named Bobby Bradley, and is quickly becoming an everyday bat in that Guardian lineup. How do you sit a player when they are the proud owner of a 1.214 OPS after their first 21 at-bats? You don’t!

Michael Pineda, SP, DET (CBS: 20% rostered, ESPN: 3% rostered): We mentioned Michael Pineda in Week Two and after his strong five-innings of shutout ball in his 2022 debut this week against the Yankees you’re going to wish you bought-in early. The price, like Pineda, could be rather hefty.

Gavin Sheets, U, CWS (CBS: 12% rostered, ESPN: 2% rostered): The injury list on the South Side continues to grow, with Eloy Jimenez now looking at missing the next 6-to-8 weeks with a severe hamstring injury. That lineup will be stretched very thin for the foreseeable future, giving Sheets plenty of at-bats as we move into May.

Drew Smyly, SP, CHC (CBS: 17% rostered, ESPN: 16% rostered): Smyly struggled a bit in his last start, but on the year has an excellent 2.45 ERA and 1.02 WHIP. He has also allowed only two walks in 14 2/3 IP. It’s time that he was given a regular turn in your Fantasy rotation.

The Closer Carousel

Dylan Floro, RP, MIA (CBS: 41% rostered, ESPN: 15% rostered):  Dylan Floro started his rehab today and is most likely looking to return to the Miami bullpen at the beginning of May. Anthony Bender has been dealing with soreness in his hip, which helps explain his relatively poor performance, but at the same time, this could make it much easier for Floro to reclaim the closer role or, at the very least a job share. It’s worth spending a small amount of that FAAB on finding out.

Dany Jimenez, RP, OAK (CBS: 12% rostered, ESPN: 4% rostered): Jimenez has made six appearances out of the pen for Oakland this year and has yet to allow a run. Toss in the excellent strikeout rate (9 in 6 IP), and he is now up to two saves, and Lou Trivino might not get his job back when he returns from the Covid IL.

Jorge Lopez , RP, BAL (CBS: 11% rostered, ESPN: 6% rostered): We have a winner in the Dillon Tate vs. Jorge Lopez ninth-inning battle, with Lopez emerging the winner. Three appearances with three successfully converted saves and nary a run allowed, and the O’s have a full-time closer. It’s now time to treat him as such in Fantasy Leagues.

Andres Munoz, RP, SEA (CBS: 13% rostered, ESPN: 3% rostered): Ken Giles and Paul Sewald are both on the IL, making for two fewer mouths to feed in that deep Seattle bullpen. Munoz has reeled off five shutout appearances after a rough debut against the Twins, culminating in his first save Friday against the Royals. The depth of the M’s pen will probably limit the save opportunities, but there will be more, and combined with that off-the-charts strikeout rate make Munoz a must-roster.

Lucas Sims, RP, CIN (CBS: 35% rostered, ESPN: 9% rostered): Art Warren and Tony Santillan didn’t exactly inspire a ton of confidence working the ninth inning while Lucas Sims was out with his elbow woes. Sims was activated off the 10-day IL on Friday and should move into the mix and possibly be the favorite for saves in the Reds bullpen moving forward.

Trevor Stephan, RP, CLE (CBS: 1% rostered, ESPN: not rostered): Who is Trevor Stephan? He’s a 25-year-old righty, plucked from the Yankees in the 2020 Rule 5 Draft.  The Guardians liked what they saw and converted him into a reliever. Thus far, in his second season, he has tossed 7 1/3 shutout innings and has moved quickly into the setup role. The early struggles of Emmanual Clase might even cause Stephan to get the opportunity to save a game or two.

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