Waiver Wire Report (Week 11)

I use the 40% threshold at CBS to make sure I examine every player whose rostership is rising. Sometimes I might miss a player or two, but there are some obvious misses (Taveras, Oliveras, and Gonzalez) this week so I’m thinking of other options going forward. Or it might just have been an off week.

In the article, I cover the players using CBS’s (about 40% or less initial roster rate) and Yahoo’s ADD/DROP rates. Both hosting sites have the option for daily and weekly waiver wire adds. CBS uses a weekly change while Yahoo looks at the last 24 hours. Yahoo is a great snapshot of right now while CBS ensures hot targets from early in the week aren’t missed. The players are ordered for redraft leagues by my rest-of-season preference grouped by starters, relievers, and hitters.

Hitters

Jon Berti: How in the hell is Berti just 26% rostered and leading the league in stolen bases (18, 3 on Saturday) while hitting a decent .275/.378/.394 with 2 HR. He needs to be 100% rostered in all roto leagues.

Luis González: The 26-year-old outfielder has been good this season (.303/.366/.444, 3 HR, 5 SB), has started 11 straight games, and is leading off against righties. And he could be demoted next week when LaMonte Wade Jr. comes off the IL since he is one of the few outfielders with options. Maria Guardado of MLB.com wrote up the dilemma.

With Wade, a fellow left-handed-hitting outfielder, expected to begin a rehab assignment with Sacramento this weekend, San Francisco will soon be faced with another tough roster decision, and González is one of the club’s few position players with Minor League options remaining. The decision will ultimately be out of González’s hands, but he’s doing everything he can to show that he deserves to stay.

“It’s hard not to bet on Luis González’s career at this point,” manager Gabe Kapler said recently. “There’s a lot of signals that he can use the whole field. He can hit anywhere in the lineup. He can hold his own against lefties. He’s an athletic defender who needs polish — he’s not all the way there on D — but he’s getting better jumps and starting to make adjustments out there. We saw the arm strength.

At this point, Gonzalez is a must roster in all formats if in the major. If not, waiver wire fodder. I’d recommend adding him but have a backup ready if he gets demoted.

Alex Kirilloff: I figure that Kiriloff will get the most love this week where he’s available. I’m not 100% sold on him yet. He was horrible (.172/.226/.172, 0 HR, 38% K%) before his second IL (wrist) stint. In 157 AAA PA, he hit .359/.465/.641 with 10 HR. Fantasy managers might dream on his prorated 40 HR power. I’d pay for half that total and that’s worth taking a chance on.

AJ Pollock: Pollock has been a disappointment (.262/.296/.399, 4 HR, 1 SB) but like several guys on the list, has heated up in June (.351/.393/.526, 2 HR, .419 BABIP). I wonder if May was his spring training since missed time during it with general soreness and started the season the IL (hamstring). He just might now be dialed in.

Ezequiel Duran: So far the 23-year-old is providing a balanced profile (.308/.321/.519, 2 HR, 2 SB) from third base. Two notes, good and bad on him. On the positive, it’s nice to see an above-league average 110 maxEV. On the other end of the spectrum, he’s only seen fastballs at a 40% clip (49% is league average) and has a 28% K%. All of his swing-and-misses are coming agianst sliders (23% SwStr%) and changeups (20% SwStr%).

Jake Burger: I wasn’t 100% sure how Burger’s playing time would work out but he has gained some with a hamstring injury to Yoán Moncada. Burger has been great so far in June (.326/.383/.721) with nine of his 14 hits going for extra bases.

Lane Thomas: He has started in 15 straight games, is leading off, and has hit .290/.362/.548 with 4 HR so far in June.

Luis García: The 22-year-old is hitting .343/.357/.493 with 2 HR in 70 PA since being promoted. I’m a little surprised he hasn’t broken the 40% mark and I’ll have to rank him again next week.

Nathaniel Lowe: So far this season, Lowe is hitting .275/.321/.432 with 8 HR and 1 SB and that was expected from him. Five of the home runs have come in June and it might be from him selling out for a power stroke. He’s hitting fewer groundballs and pulling the ball more while ignoring his plate discipline.

If he keeps the changes, expect a different and hopefully more productive hitter.

Brendan Donovan: I’ve been hesitant to go all-in with Donovan (.338/.447/.466, 1 HR, 2 SB) because I was worried his playing time might dry up. That has not been the case with him starting in 20 of the last 21 games and hitting in the top two spots over the last four games. He’s a perfect bench bat because he’s qualified at three positions (2B, 3B, OF) and could be at two more (nine games at 1B, seven at short).

Edward Olivares: He was on fire (.371/.421/.486, 5 HR, 2 SB) before going on the IL (quad). He has the tools to contribute in multiple ways if he gets a shot. Kyle Isbel (.235 .258 .306, 0 HR, 2 SB) isn’t exactly hitting so Olivares might take his spot.

Orlando Arcia: Since Ozzie Albies went on the IL, Arcia (.367/.429/.600 with 3 HR) has started three straight while batting eighth. Over his career, the 27-year-old Arcia has shown league-average power (11% HR/FB%, maxEV near 108 mph) but a 52% career GB% limited his upside. This season, he has the groundball rate down to 44% to go with career-highs of 13% Barrel%, 95 mph avgEV, and 11 degrees LA.

Oscar Gonzalez: He’s been great at baseball (.342/.361/.456) but the complete lack of home runs is discouraging.

Amed Rosario: He’s hit better in June by hitting .361/.355/.508 with 4 SB. Don’t expect the home runs to return with his 56% GB% (60% GB% in June) and a 4-degree avgLA (4% Barrel%).

Leody Taveras: Taveras was destroying AAA (.294/.335/.485, 7 HR, 7 SB) and he’s back in the majors hopefully for good.

“Leody (Taveras) was probably the other option that got the most consideration,” president of baseball operations Jon Daniels said on Sunday. “Actually, at the time we were having the discussion — we made the decision to bring Steele in the night before last and we weren’t sure Josh Smith was going to be on the IL yet at that point. So (Zach) Reks wasn’t even really an option without an IL (placement). I think with Leody — and we’ve communicated this to him — he’s really close. When we go get him, we want it to be, ideally, for the last time and have him up here for good.”

He’s back to struggling with 6 K in 16 PA with the league attacking in with hard fastballs and changeups (78% seen).

On another note, he switch-hits with a career .649 OPS vs lefties and a .531 OPS against lefties. He throws right so I wonder if giving up switch-hitting might help him.

Matt Reynolds: Reynolds has been decent (.264/.326/.384 with 3 HR and 4 SB) but with Jonathan India off the IL, it’ll be interesting to see how the middle infield playing time shakes out in Cincinnati.

Trent Grisham: Grisham has headed up a bit in June (.556 OPS, 0 SB before June 1st, .750 OPS, 2 SB after). Almost all the gains are BABIP driven (.218 to .289). The improvement is simply regression, not a talent change. His batting average and power weren’t his calling card but the hope for double-digit steals. The steals have not materialized but the recent uptick is encouraging. Add as a bench bat for now.

Adam Duvall: The weather is heating up and so is the streaky Duvall. Here are his monthly home run per flyball rates (17% for his career).

Month: HR/FB%
April: 4%
May: 3%
June: 33%
Season: 9%

He only hits home runs so he’s either rostered and continuously started to not miss on the hot streaks or released for someone else to guess when he’ll get hot.

Nomar Mazara: Mazara is in a strict platoon with José Azocar facing the lefties. Mazara is hitting .341/.386/.463 with 1 HR so far and is scheduled to face five righties next week.

Ji-Man Choi: A perfectly fine streaming platoon option when he’s facing a bunch of righties. Next week, he is scheduled to face four righties, three over the weekend.

Seth Brown: I guess he is being added for the power (8 HR) and speed (6 SB) combination, but his .202 AVG (career .218 AVG) is a category killer.

Bryson Stott: He’s been a disappointment (.504 OPS) and now might be on the strong side of a platoon with Yairo Muñoz.

Matt Carpenter: Wait, what, no. In the last 12 games, he’s started twice.

Danny Mendick: I guess people like adding Mendick who is at least providing some batting average help (.289 AVG, .249 AVG for his career).

Catchers

Christian Bethancourt 베탄코트: In one catcher leagues, Betancourt is a must roster with his production (.254/.291/.418, 4 HR, 4 SB) and playing time (eight straight starts).

Jose Trevino: Compared to other catchers, he’s been great (.291/.336/.476, 5 HR, 1 SB).

Jorge Alfaro: He’s starting in half the games for San Diego while hitting .283/.320/.478 with 5 HR and 1 SB.

Omar Narváez: He’s on the strong side of a platoon and has an acceptable .274 AVG (career .278 AVG vs RHP, .213 vs LHP).

Cal Raleigh: A power-only play with 8 HR but a .180 AVG.

Hitting Prospects

Esteury Ruiz: He hit .344/.474/.611 with 9 HR and 37 SB in AA. He is now hitting .450/.560/.800 with 4 HR and 9 SB in AAA.

CBS Hitter Rostership Rates
Name Initial Roster% Final Roster% Change
Nate Lowe 1B TEX 37% 46% 9%
Trent Grisham CF SD 37% 40% 3%
A.J. Pollock LF CHW 36% 38% 2%
Adam Duvall CF ATL 34% 39% 5%
Omar Narvaez C MIL 34% 36% 2%
Brendan Donovan RF STL 33% 49% 16%
Alex Kirilloff LF MIN 33% 48% 15%
Amed Rosario SS CLE 33% 38% 5%
Bryson Stott SS PHI 32% 47% 15%
Jose Trevino C NYY 21% 29% 8%
Ji-Man Choi 1B TB 20% 22% 2%
Luis Garcia SS WAS 19% 35% 16%
Ezequiel Duran 3B TEX 18% 30% 12%
Oscar Gonzalez RF CLE 17% 26% 9%
Lane Thomas LF WAS 15% 26% 11%
Jake Burger 3B CHW 12% 45% 33%
Jon Berti 3B MIA 10% 26% 16%
Cal Raleigh C SEA 9% 15% 6%
Seth Brown 1B OAK 8% 11% 3%
Jorge Alfaro C SD 7% 10% 3%
Matt Carpenter DH NYY 5% 12% 7%
Esteury Ruiz 2B SD 4% 6% 2%
Christian Bethancourt 1B OAK 3% 22% 19%
Matt Reynolds 2B CIN 2% 4% 2%
Nomar Mazara RF SD 2% 4% 2%
Leody Taveras CF TEX 2% 3% 1%
Orlando Arcia DH ATL 1% 12% 11%
Danny Mendick SS CHW 1% 3% 2%
Luis Gonzalez RF SFG UNK 15% 0%

Starting Pitchers

Ross Stripling: A 3.03 ERA with a 3.26 xFIP as a starter is all a fantasy manager needs to know about Stripling to roster him. Since transitioning to starting, his pitches per start have gone from 56 to 74 to 84.

Alex Faedo: Faedo has two starts coming up (at BOS, at ARI) and for the season, looks to be a league-average pitcher (7.4 K/9, 4.28 ERA, 4.46 xFIP, 1.40 WHIP). He has stepped it up in June with his K%-BB% jumping from 7% to an elite 22%. He’s moved away from throwing his change (10% SwStr%) and throwing his four-seamer (8% SwStr%) and slider (17% SwStr%) more. He must be added to see if the changes and results stick.

Jonathan Heasley: He’s been respectable in June (8.5 K/9, 1.00 WHIP, 2.65 ERA) after being a disaster in May (4.7 K/9, 1.76 WHIP, 4.66 ERA). Two changes are behind the turnaround. First, he’s throwing more strikes with his Zone% going from 45% to 53%. Second, his curveball (13% SwStr%) usage has increased from 14% to 22%. Among qualified starters, his June 17% K%-BB% would rank among the top-30. With so few options, he needs to be considered because of the recent changes.

Beau Brieske: After struggling over the season’s first two months (5.25 ERA, 5.5 K/9, 1.39 WHIP), he’s been respectable in June (0.96 ERA, 7.2 K/9, 0.86 WHIP).

The new combination has his monthly groundball rate going up (33% GB% to 39% to 49%) and home runs allowed headed down (2.7 HR/9 to 2.4 to 1.0).

Dane Dunning: It’s time to find some comps using strikeouts, walks, and groundballs

Name: K/9, BB/9, GB%
Bassitt: 9.6, 2.8, 45%
Fried: 8.4, 1.5, 52%
Alcantara: 8.1, 2.7, 54%
Dunning: 8.6, 3.0, 54%

The other three are universally rostered, so it looks like Dunning should also. There is an issue. Dunning is losing fastball velocity (90.5 mph to 88.3 mph).

His results have dropped each month with his K%-BB% going from 16% to 14% to 12%. He’s still rosterable at 12% K%, but he needs to stop the decline and hopefully gain some back.

Braxton Garrett: After his Saturday start, he has a 4.85 ERA (4.98 xFIP), 6.9 K/9, and 2.8 BB/9. They aren’t the best number but they are in line with his projections. I was behind his turnaround before this start because he has been limiting walks (2.4 BB/9 in AAA, 2.0 BB/9 in the majors), but he walked two batters over four innings without striking out a batter. My expectation has been tempered, but I’m not dropping him yet.

Mitch Keller: The addition of a sinker has him back to being relevant. Since moving to it four starts ago, he has a 2.75 ERA, 4.22 xFIP, 7.3 K/9, 53% GB%, and 1.37 WHIP. He has become a streaming option.

Zach Davies: He’s posting streamable results (7.4 K/9, 1.20 WHIP, 3.78 ERA, 4.13 xFIP), so stream him against weak opponents.

Justin Steele: Steele has had some great starts and some major fumigate the bathroom stinkers. Over the last two games (1.29 ERA, 2.6 K/9, 1.14 WHIP), he’s leaned heavily on his fastball (>70% usage, 8% SwStr%, 57% GB%). I’ll continually contend that he’ll be fantasy relevant with some combination, he just needs to find it first.

Tyler Wells: Wells is taking advantage of a .242 BABIP (37% GB%) to post a 1.07 WHIP and 3.62 ERA. His monthly strikeout rate keeps dropping (6.9 K/9 to 5.3 to 4.5). The main reason for the drop is that he has been trying to introduce an ineffective curveball (5% SwStr%). I just don’t see anything to get excited over.

Andre Pallante: He might belong with the relievers since it seems like he is out of the rotation. His only positive trait is a 63% GB% that helps limit home runs (0.5 HR/9). His 4.1 BB/9 is a major issue and pushes his WHIP up to 1.41. I think there could be some upside if he could throw more strikes.

Chris Flexen 플렉센: He must have been added for his two starts (vs MIN, vs LAA) because it wasn’t for his talent (4.30 ERA, 4.98 xFIP, 6.3 K/9, 1.42 WHIP).

Nick Martinez: He has an acceptable 3.74 ERA (3.99 xFIP) and 9.1 K/9. His 4.1 BB/9 has his WHIP up to an undesirable 1.39 mark. The biggest issue with him is that Mike Clevinger is coming off the IL and he’ll likely to take Martinez’s spot in the rotation. No job, no fantasy value.

Zack Thompson: Besides a decent AAA 11.4 K/9, he showing no signs of being a serviceable major league pitcher. His 94-mph fastball is middling. He’s throwing his fastball and curve the most and both have a swinging-strike rate under 3% so far. In AAA, he was homer prone (1.7 HR/9 in 2021, 1.2 HR/9 in 2022). Ignore him until he shows some signs of life.

Chris Archer: The 3.35 ERA (5.02 xFIP) seems alright but his 1.34 WHIP from a 4.28 BB/9 is close to unrosterable. He’s not improved in June (2% K%-BB%) and hasn’t thrown over 70 pitches in his last three starts. The Twins have allowed him to see a lineup for the third time in only three of his 12 starts.

Taylor Hearn: While his 8.1 K/9 is acceptable, walking a batter (4.6 BB/9) every other inning is not, especially when it leads to a 1.68 WHIP.

Mike Minor: He’s been horrible (7.36 ERA, 3.7 HR/9, 3.1 BB/9) since coming off the IL with his 8.0 K/9 being his only rosterable trait. His declining fastball velocity (90 mph) is at a career-low. I’d ignore him until he strings together three decent starts.

Devin Smeltzer: A .224 BABIP isn’t going to last to keep his ERA under 4.00 (3.52 ERA for the season, 6.91 ERA in June). A 4.5 K/9 and 5.0 xFIP aren’t going to cut it.

Kutter Crawford: The 26-year-old was recalled to the majors and threw five innings of shutout ball (7 K, 4 BB) in his first start this season. It went worse on Saturday with 4 ER in 4 IP. Overall, he has a 6.41 ERA with a 5.5 BB/9. With Garret Whitlock coming off the IL to take Crawford’s spot, it’s fine to dump Crawford.

Starting Pitcher Prospects

Ken Waldichuk: In AAA, he is posting a 12.2 K/9, 1.08 WHIP, and 2.88 ERA. He’s been throwing his sinker (10% SwStr%) and slider (10% SwStr%) more and not his four-seamer (7% SwStr%).

CBS Starting Pitcher Rostership Rates
Name Initial Roster% Final Roster% Change
Chris Flexen SP SEA 38% 41% 3%
Dane Dunning SP TEX 28% 30% 2%
Alex Faedo SP DET 23% 30% 7%
Ross Stripling RP TOR 21% 37% 16%
Devin Smeltzer SP MIN 20% 24% 4%
Chris Archer SP MIN 13% 16% 3%
Justin Steele SP CHC 13% 15% 2%
Mitch Keller SP PIT 12% 15% 3%
Nick Martinez SP SD 11% 13% 2%
Zach Davies SP ARI 10% 25% 15%
Mike Minor SP CIN 10% 14% 4%
Tyler Wells SP BAL 9% 12% 3%
Taylor Hearn SP TEX 8% 10% 2%
Ken Waldichuk RP NYY 6% 8% 2%
Andre Pallante RP STL 4% 9% 5%
Jon Heasley SP KC 3% 8% 5%
Zack Thompson SP STL 3% 5% 2%
Braxton Garrett SP MIA 3% 5% 2%
Beau Brieske SP DET 2% 5% 3%
Kutter Crawford RP BOS 0% 2% 2%

Relievers – Saves-based ranks.

Tanner Houck: Good reliever who is the closer.

Tanner Scott: Good reliever who is the closer.

Diego Castillo: Good reliever who is sharing the closing duties.

Seranthony Domínguez: Great reliever who might be sharing the closer’s role.

Brad Hand: OK reliever who might be sharing the closer’s role.

Kendall Graveman: OK reliever who is closing with Liam Hendricks on the IL.

Jason Adam: Good reliever who is proud to be part of a bullpen by committee.

Eli Morgan: Great reliever who is the backup closer.

A.J. Minter: Good reliever who is the backup closer.

Griffin Jax: Good reliever who is a couple of steps away from being the closer.

CBS Relief Pitcher Rostership Rates
Name Initial Roster% Final Roster% Change
Tanner Houck RP BOS 33% 62% 29%
A.J. Minter RP ATL 20% 23% 3%
Diego Castillo RP SEA 15% 23% 8%
Kendall Graveman RP CHW 14% 39% 25%
Jason Adam RP TB 11% 18% 7%
Tanner Scott RP MIA 9% 35% 26%
Seranthony Dominguez RP PHI 9% 31% 22%
Elijah Morgan RP CLE 8% 11% 3%
Brad Hand RP PHI 6% 15% 9%
Griffin Jax RP MIN 3% 5% 2%





Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won four FSWA Awards including on for his Mining the News series. He's won Tout Wars three times, LABR once, and got his first NFBC Main Event win in 2021. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.

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alan fogelmember
14 days ago

Excellent analysis! Thanks!