Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pickups: Week 14
As the calendar turns to June, there are still plenty of intriguing options available on the waiver wire.
Ownership percentages are for ESPN leagues as of Saturday.
Miguel Sano – 3B – Minnesota Twins – 25.2 percent owned
The latest exciting prospect to be called up from the Twins loaded farm system, Sano has the minor leauge track record to suggest he could be a fantasy relevant player in the majors very soon.
There will be some growing pains, but Sano has plenty of fantasy upside due to his tremendous raw power. The 6-4, 260 pound 22-year-old blasted 35 home runs between two levels in 2013 and hit 15 in 66 games Double-A this season before the Twins decided to call him up.
Sano did show ability to hit for average and get on base at some stages of the minors and should get plenty of opportunities to help his counting stats as Minnesota’s primary DH. Owners with an established third baseman shouldn’t bother, but Sano is one of the highest-upside candidates available on the wire.
Randal Grichuk – OF – St. Louis Cardinals – 33 percent owned
For proof that the Cardinals seemingly have an ability to plug in anyone and have them succeed, look no further than Grichuk. After slugger Matt Holliday was placed on the disabled list on June 9, Grichuk has stepped in to the starting left fielder roll flawlessly, warranting both further playing time and a look in fantasy.
In 50 games this season, Grichuk has posted a solid .261/.302/.528 line. The big thing making him fantasy relevant is the power, as Grichuk has blasted seven home runs, in addition to 12 doubles and five triples.
This didn’t exactly come out of nowhere-Grichuk had solid numbers in the minors as a member of the Angels’ organization and had a respectable 90 wRC+ debut a year ago. Still, his ownership number don’t quite represent the value he shown so far.
Ivan Nova – SP – New York Yankees – 29.2 percent owned
While nobody can really predict how a pitcher will respond to Tommy John surgery, Nova is worth a cheap flier for owners who need pitching help.
Before missing most of 2014 and the first few months of 2013, Nova was starting to figure it out at the major league level. Nova put up a very solid fantasy season in 2013, posting a 3.10 ERA (3.47 FIP) with 116 strikeouts in 139.1 innings.
Nova’s return attempt has gone well enough so far, as he has allowed two earned runs in 12 innings over two starts. That kind of proven pitcher isn’t always easy to find on the waiver wire.
Andrew Heaney – SP – Los Angeles Angels – 14.9 percent owned
A highly-touted prospect, Heaney’s debut didn’t much get much fantasy attention due to his lackluster showing in the majors with the Miami Marlins last year and Triple-A to begin this season. Still, the results of his first two major league starts this season are impressive, and he has the upside to be a rookie bargain on the waiver wire, a la Lance McCullers a few weeks ago.
Heaney has allowed just two runs in 13 innings of work against a pair of strong lineups in the Houston Astros and New York Yankees. The 24-year-old has struck out 12 while only allowing nine baserunners.
With three good pitches, strong command and deception in his delivery, Heaney should be able to generate a decent amount of strikeouts and has shown a great ability to keep the ball in the yard throughout his professional career.