7 Under-the-Radar Waiver Pickups (Fantasy Baseball)

Jun 16, 2017

Tom Murphy is returning for the Rockies and could provide a nice boost at a thin position

The season is far from over and if you’re in need of help, you don’t have to look any further than the waiver wire. We may be wrapping up week 11, but based on the ownership percentages over at Yahoo, the candidate pool isn’t shallow to the point where you should feel helpless.

We’re not asking you to shuffle through all the fodder out there. Instead, have a read below as we’ve asked our featured experts to name under-the-radar hitters and pitchers that are likely available in your league.

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What one hitter should fantasy owners look into picking up that is owned in less than 25% of Yahoo Leagues?

Tom Murphy (C – COL): 12% Ownership
“It feels odd adding a potential platoon catcher to a fantasy team, but the circumstances surrounding Colorado’s Tom Murphy are too good to ignore. Not only does Murphy play the thinnest position in fantasy baseball, but his home games are in the hitter haven of Colorado. In the preseason, Murphy was beloved by spreadsheets that could project his power over the course of a full season. Injuries delayed his 2017 debut, but he now enters a deadly lineup as temperatures steadily rise. So, too, will his value.”
– Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

Matt Adams (1B/LF – ATL): 21% Ownership
“Adams is coming off a three-game series in Washington in which he collected seven hits, scored seven runs and drove in six more. Over his last 14 games, he has six homers (only Gary Sanchez and Cody Bellinger have more) and a 1.070 OPS, yet he’s still owned in just 18% of mixed leagues. “Big City” has an everyday role for at least another month before Freddie Freeman returns and is an excellent short-term pickup for power and surprisingly, batting average (.290).”
– Steve Gardner (USA Today)

Howie Kendrick (1B/2B/3B/LF – PHI): 21% Ownership
“Kendrick could be a great pickup for the rest of the season. He missed over a month with an oblique injury in April, however, has bounced back nicely since returning on May 29th. He has dual eligibility at 2B and OF, and could be a solid runs and average contributor moving forward. There is even some SB potential if he can continue hitting near the top of the Phillies lineup. Expect his % owned to continue to rise in the coming weeks.”
– Jason Johnson (Understanding Fantasy Baseball)

Jed Lowrie (2B/DH – OAK): 21% Ownership
“Lowrie is a hitter that owners should look into to picking up. He is only owned in 23% of Yahoo fantasy baseball leagues despite posting 43 runs scored, 8 HR, 23 RBI and a .296 batting average. Jed hits either second or third in the Athletics lineup every day and is a solid option at second base or middle infield while healthy. He’s shown his value in the past but has rarely been able to stay healthy and productive. Pick him up for free if you can and enjoy the ride while it lasts. ”
– Justin Klein (The Fake Baseball)

Q2. What one pitcher should fantasy owners look into picking up that is owned in less than 25% of Yahoo Leagues?

Seth Lugo (SP/RP – NYM): 18% Ownership
“In a week filled with bad news for Mets pitchers, Lugo is perhaps the lone bright spot. He spent more than two months on the disabled list with an elbow injury he suffered in the World Baseball Classic, but made a successful return to action last Sunday with seven strong innings (one run, six hits, six strikeouts) against the Braves. He has a solid, but not stellar strikeout rate, so his ability to pitch deep into games will be key.”
– Steve Gardner (USA Today)

Seth Lugo may soon be a ‘must add’ in many formats. He missed nearly the entire 2017 season with an elbow injury, however, looked excellent in his season debut on June 11th at Atlanta. If you’ve seen Lugo pitch, he has one of the filthiest curveballs in the game, and has the potential to miss a LOT of bats. The Mets rotation is a disaster and he should have no trouble holding a spot for the rest of the year. He is well worth a pickup now while the price is still low.”
– Jason Johnson (Understanding Fantasy Baseball)

Matt Strahm (SP/RP – KC): 2% Ownership
“It was almost exactly one year ago – seriously, 6/10/16 – when I wrote about a left-handed reliever-turned-starter in Kansas City, and the calendar year draws to a close with the same recommendation. Last year’s Danny Duffy is this year’s Matt Strahm. A quick look at his numbers will likely produce fear until you consider his brief ‘reset period’ in AAA. Prior to the demotion, he allowed seven earned runs in 1.1 innings. After, he appeared in 17 games as a reliever and touted a 1.74 ERA. That was before he threw five innings without allowing an earned run en route to a win in his first start.”
– Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

Archie Bradley (SP/RP – ARI): 22% Owned
“Bradley is a pitcher that fantasy owners should look into picking up. He is owned in just 22% of Yahoo leagues even though he’s been fantastic this season. Archie’s two wins, 36 Ks, 1.21 ERA and 0.84 WHIP across 29 and 2/3 innings pitched make him the 128th best player in standard 5×5 leagues. Not only is he likely next in line for saves behind the usually terrible Francisco Rodney, but Archie has both SP and RP eligibility, which makes him easy to get into a starting lineup. As long as he remains healthy, I expect him to continue being a valuable and productive commodity in the fake game all season. Pick him up if he’s available.”
– Justin Klein (The Fake Baseball)

Thank you to the experts for naming their top under-the-radar waiver pickups. Be sure to give them a follow on Twitter and check out our latest podcast below.

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