We would all love to win our league on Draft Day, but that’s simply not possible. The fantasy baseball waiver wire is a necessary tool for fortifying your roster. How much FAAB should you be willing to spend on some of the hot adds? Here’s a look at some of the players, generally owned in 50% or less of leagues, who may be worth considering.
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Fantasy Baseball FAAB Recommendations
Must Target Options:
- Davis Schneider – Toronto Blue Jays (FAAB – 5%) – Schneider hit the ground running, going 9-13 with 2 HR and 5 RBI over his first three games. Predictably things have slowed, going 0-9 in his next three games. Which is the real Davis Schneider? The truth lies somewhere in the middle, but is that enough to target him? Schneider was not a heralded prospect, but he was hitting .275 with 21 HR and 9 SB over 392 PA at Triple-A. He added 21 doubles and 1 triple, so it would appear that he has discovered his power swing. He has always shown a great approach, including a 9.5% SwStr% and 18.4% walk rate prior to his promotion. Power and approach? That’s too much potential, especially in OBP formats as he works in a super-utility role. In OBP formats I’d recommend going even higher than this (think 7.5-10%).
- Chase Silseth – Los Angeles Angels (FAAB – 7.5%) – Silseth has been a hot name and a forgotten man. This is one of the hot times, though has the potential to stick. He had 12 K over 7.0 IP in a no-decision against the Mariners (that gives him 10+ K in two of his past three outings) his last time out. Just to add to the excitement was his 1 BB, while he generated 6 groundball outs compared to 1 fly ball out. It’s surprising that home runs have been his biggest issue, considering his 56.4% groundball rate. That number, coupled with his 12.2% SwStr%, gives a good glimpse of his upside. The doubters will point toward his .241 BABIP, but that’s not enough.
Young Players Who May Struggle:
- Zack Gelof – Oakland A’s (FAAB – 1%) – After putting up 12 HR and 20 SB over 308 PA at Triple-A, he’s added 6 HR and 6 SB over 96 PA in the Majors. While he’s not a 30 HR monster, there’s power and speed and that is always going to bring potential value. However, he does struggle to make contact. His SwStr% was 14.7% at Triple-A, but it’s ballooned to 17.2% after his promotion. All of his HR have come against fastballs, and he’s struggled against both breaking balls (.160 AVG) and offspeed pitches (.167 AVG). In other words, there’s a very good chance that he struggles as pitchers adjust and attack him differently. A return trip to Triple-A isn’t impossible. There’s value in keeper leagues, but in redraft formats, there’s reason to be skeptical.
- Emerson Hancock – Seattle Mariners (FAAB – 1-2%) – The former first-round pick is the latest highly regarded prospect to reach the Majors. He made the jump directly from Double-A, where he owned a 4.32 ERA. He showed flashes (1.74 ERA in June), but overall he was pedestrian. In 98.0 IP he had a 4.32 ERA, with fairly uninspiring underlying metrics (9.83 K/9, 3.49 BB/9, 42.0% groundball rate). Throw in a potential innings limit (he’s already at 103.1 IP, after throwing 98.1 in ’22) and the short-term upside is limited. In long-term keeper leagues be willing to increase your bid if he’s available. In redraft formats, don’t buy into all of the name hype.
Use Them While They’re Hot (But Don’t Grow Attached):
- Jake Bauers – New York Yankees (FAAB – 0%) – Bauers is getting the opportunity to fill in for Anthony Rizzo. How long this run will be remains to be seen. Thus far, Bauers is looking like a source of power, but little else (11 HR, .228 AVG in 215 PA). That said, his average home run of 395 feet isn’t very inspiring. It’s not like he’s a monster at home (6 HR), and with the poor average it’s hard to get behind him.
- Mike Moustakas – Los Angeles Angels (FAAB – 1%) – Remember when he was a must-own option? He’s trying to return to that form, with 7 HR over 141 PA with the Angels. Of course his overall .329 BABIP is far ahead of his career mark (.265). He’s been swinging and missing far too much, especially with Los Angeles (15.4% SwStr%). It’s possible he maintains his power (his average home run is 412 feet), so if you need power it’s fair to target him. If you need an overall presence? There’s a good chance his average plummets, and that could create a one-trick pony (and also cause his playing time to disappear).
- Jon Singleton – Houston Astros (FAAB – 0-1%) – There was a time when Singleton was considered one of the best prospects in the game. Now 31 years old, those days are obviously far behind us. While a 2-HR day is going to catch your eye, does anyone believe that he can maintain it long-term? There’s a reason he hadn’t been seen in the Majors since 2015. Maybe you can catch lightning in a bottle for the short-term, but does anyone truly believe he can be a force for the rest of the season?
We Have A Need For Speed:
- Maikel Garcia – Kansas City Royals (FAAB – 1%) – He may not be an elite speed option, but he has shown an ability to steal 30+ bases during his minor league career. He “only” has 18 this season, he has 4 in August. There are now injury concerns, as he was forced from Friday’s game with “upper body discomfort”. That is obviously something to watch closely, before making a bid. If healthy he may not be an elite base stealer, but hitting at the top of the lineup he could make a difference over the final weeks.
- Johan Rojas – Philadelphia Phillies (FAAB – 1-2%) – Looking for stolen bases? Rojas could you be your guy, with 5 SB over his first 67 PA. He had 30 SB prior to his recall, after stealing 62 bases in ’22. The lack of exposure to Triple-A (he was called up from Double-A) could hurt him. He’s seen his SwStr% jump to 12.2% and his chasing outside the strike zone far too much (38.8% O-Swing%). As expected he’s struggled against breaking balls (22.22% Whiff%) and he’ll need to adjust to have success. If he isn’t getting on base, can he tap into his speed? He’s more of a stash and hold, to see if he’s ready to tap into his potential.
Sources – Fangraphs, MILB.com, CBS Sports, Baseball Savant, Brooks Baseball