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Waiver Wire Rankings: Wacha Waitin’ For?

May 31, 2013
After a sterling debut, Michael Wacha proved he should be owned in all leagues. Pick him up if he's still available.

After a sterling debut, Michael Wacha proved he should be owned in all leagues. Pick him up if he’s still available.
Photo: Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports


With another week nearly in the books, it’s time to check back in on potential waiver wire options to target. This week’s Featured Pros are here to help by ranking the readily available players in most leagues to target.  So whether your team has been hit by the injury bug or you simply need to make an upgrade, read on to find out which pickups the experts recommend.


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Featured Pros

KJ (Fantasy Team Advice)

Tony Mauriello (FantasyTrade411)

Igor Derysh (Sports Jerks)

Dave McKay (Fantasy Sports Brain)


Batter Rankings (Waiver Wire)*

 Player  Team  Position  Ownership  Best Rank  Worst Rank  Consensus Rank
 Nolan Arenado  COL  3B  29%  1  2  1.3
 Neil Walker  PIT  2B  50%  1  5  3.0
 Didi Gregorius  ARI  SS  27%  2  7  3.8
 Daniel Nava  BOS  OF  49%  2  7  4.0
 Nick Franklin  SEA  SS  25%  3  5  4.3
 Kevin Youkilis  NYY  1B/3B  44%  6  9  7.3
 Pedro Alvarez  PIT  3B  50%  6  9  7.8
 Yonder Alonso  SD  1B  22%  5  12  8.5
 Michael Brantley  CLE  OF  39%  4  13  9.5
 Matt Joyce  TB  OF  25%  6  15  9.8
 Brandon Crawford  SF  SS  48%  9  11  10.3
 Yan Gomes  CLE  C/1B/3B  15%  9  13  11.8
 James Loney  TB  1B  39%  10  14  12.0
 Jason Castro  HOU  C  23%  10  14  12.5
 Matt Dominguez  HOU  3B  8%  14  15  14.8

*List consists of relevant players with at least 50% availability in Yahoo! leagues


Batter Advice

Each expert was asked to share advice about a hitter they like along with any other waiver wire suggestions they have. Here’s what the pundits had to say:


KJFantasy Team Advice

Neil Walker looks like he has finally gotten his swing back over the last few days going 7-14 over his last 4 games (2 HR). Walker is 27 years old and hitting in the heart of a feisty Pirates lineup. If you are in the 50% of leagues that he is available he can provide plenty of offense at the thin 2B position.


Tony MaurielloFantasyTrade411

Daniel Nava: In what was just supposed to be a platoon in the Red Sox outfield with the likes of, for example, Jackie Bradley Jr., Nava has quietly taken the reigns and earned the starting spot in RF.. In 159 ABs, Nava has 46 hits, 15 of which were for extra bases, 7 HRs and 33 RBIs. Nava is not just a solid addition to your roto or H2H leagues, but because he does not strike out too much (34 Ks in 178 plate appearances), he is also a very solid addition in points leagues.


Igor DeryshSports Jerks

Yonder Alonso is easily one of the more underrated first basemen in fantasy. While he lacks the power that many top fantasy first baggers possess, he’s on pace to drive in close to 100 RBI. His 6 HR are solid but his .282 BA, 29 RBI, 21 R, and 3 SB are both sustainable and as good as you will find on the waiver wire in nearly 80% of fantasy leagues.


Dave McKayFantasy Sports Brain

Nick Franklin was brought up to play so at-bats shouldn’t be an issue. As thin as middle infield is, fantasy players are hoping he brought most of his minor league slash line with him to the bigs: 324/440/472. The two home runs on Thursday help us think that he will.


Starting Pitcher Rankings (Waiver Wire)*

 Player  Team  Ownership  Best Rank  Worst Rank  Consensus Rank
 Andrew Cashner  SD 39%  1  1 1.0
 Michael Wacha  STL 50%  2  5 3.0
 Jarrod Parker  OAK 42%  2 7 3.8
 Zach McAllister  CLE 32%  4  5 4.5
 Julio Teheran  ATL 42% 3 11 5.8
 Scott Feldman  CHC 46% 3 7 5.8
 John Lackey  BOS 37% 4 8 6.3
 Kyle Kendrick  PHI 47% 6 9 8.0
 Jason Hammel  BAL 46% 5 14 9.0
 Tyler Lyons  STL 19% 8 14 11.3
 Chris Archer  TB 5% 10 14 11.8
 Jeff Locke  PIT 50% 10 15 11.8
 Jorge De La Rosa  COL 32% 9 13 12.0
 Mike Leake  CIN 28% 11 14 12.3
 Brandon McCarthy  ARI 43% 11 15 14.0

*List consists of relevant players with at least 50% availability in Yahoo! leagues


Staring Pitcher Advice

Tony MaurielloFantasyTrade411

Michael Wacha: After last night’s brilliant first start in the major leagues (9 ground ball outs, 6 strikeouts in 21 outs, 93 mph average on fastball and 6 of 7 IPs were perfect), expect Wacha’s ownership to jump significantly today. The St. Louis Cardinals’ front office has been nothing short of fantastic with how they manage their young pitchers (Miller, Lyons), so it should come as no surprise that Wacha will be coveted over the next few days. Wacha does not have any one pitch that will make your mouth drop, but what he does is simply “pitch efficiently,” which is key for a young SP, who likely has an innings cap on him.


KJFantasy Team Advice

It looks like Jarrod Parker has straightened out his early season struggles, as he has posted 4 straight quality starts dating back to May 11th. Parker has thrown 7 innings in each of his last 3 starts while striking out a combined 14 batters and lowering his ERA to 5.40. The numbers might not look all that impressive, but Parker is certainly trending in the right direction, and he has the experience to keep it up for the remainder of 2013.


Igor DeryshSports Jerks

At first glance, Julio Teheran’s 3.67 ERA and 1.33 WHIP are unimpressive but those numbers hardly tell the story of his first nine starts. Teheran gave up 13 R on 21 H, 7 BB, and 5 HR in his first three starts, lasting just 16 combined innings. In his last six starts, Teheran is 3-1 with a 2.23 ERA and 23 K/5 BB. At 22, Teheran finally looks ready to turn that obvious talent into on-field production.


Dave McKayFantasy Sports Brain

Orioles fans have been watching to see if Jason Hammel will start pitching like the staff ace he is supposed to be. There is room for optimism. Over his last two starts he’s combined for 14.2 innings, four earned runs, 14 strikeouts, and just two walks.



That wraps up this week’s Featured Pro advice. Thanks to the experts for taking the time to share their insight. Please visit their sites and follow them on Twitter for more of their tips.


Enjoy the games this weekend!

Featured Pros, MLB