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Top 11 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pickups (Week 4)

Top 11 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pickups (Week 4)

Another great week of baseball is coming to an end. Unfortunately, it was another week where we lost some prominent pitchers like Framber Valdez and now Bobby Miller. We’ve reached a point where the pitching injuries won’t stop until every pitcher drafted in the top 25 is on the injured list (IL). That’s where articles like this one tend to come in handy.

I went with a new format of the waiver wire article last week, highlighting two of my favorite waiver wire targets for each position grouping. You seemed to enjoy how it turned out and I enjoyed writing it, so I think that’s the format we’ll stick with.

Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Assistant Analyze Moves Who To Pick Up

As usual, the guys on this list are my favorite choices this week. They’re the pick-ups I believe can have the best impact for you in the short term, with long-term options sprinkled in along the way. We’re a few weeks into the season now and while we are still dealing with small sample sizes, they’re starting to get big enough to differentiate the real from the fake. With that in mind, let’s get right into it.

Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Targets (Week 4)

Catcher

Elias Diaz (C – COL) 

CBS: 27%, Yahoo 19%, ESPN 5%

Elias Diaz tends to fly under the radar in terms of fantasy relevance. We talk so much about Coors Field and targeting their hitters but nobody ever thinks “I absolutely need to pick up Diaz”. While he’s still not a necessity, he’s my favorite catcher add this week. He’s currently in the midst of a seven-game hitting streak with four multi-hit games in that span. Diaz has also driven in six and scored four in that span. He’s currently headed into a week with more home games on the schedule and he historically performs drastically better at home. If you need a catcher, he’s your best bet.

Ivan Herrera (C – STL)

CBS: 18%, Yahoo: 8%, ESPN: 6%

If you remember last week, Ivan Herrera was my favorite waiver wire add of anyone. He did not disappoint. He hit a pair of monster home runs and struck out just two times. The downside to Herrera was that Willson Contreras and Lars Nootbaar returned from injury. The Cardinals seem set on continuing to find regular at-bats for him, though. As long as that happens he’s worth an add in all 12-team and deeper leagues.

Corner Infield

Michael Busch (1B, 3B – CHC) 

CBS: 53%, Yahoo: 25%, ESPN: 7%

Another guy from last week’s list. If Michael Busch continues to rake and be under-rostered he’s going to continue to be listed. He’s now hit a home run in three straight games and the minor-league power he showed looks legitimate. He has a 106.3 miles per hour (MPH), 90th EV (almost two MPH above league average) and a 16.7% pulled fly ball rate. Combined that has the potential to lead to 30+ home runs this season. He’s going to be one of the most added players in the coming days so make sure you snag him if he’s available.

Jordan Westburg (2B, 3B – BAL)

CBS: 46%, Yahoo: 50%, ESPN: 10%

Baltimore is so chock-full of young talent that guys like Jordan Westburg are getting overlooked. He may not have the game-breaking power of Colton Cowser or the all-around skill of Jackson Holliday but he’s quietly putting together a nice season. After his 3-for-5 performance last night, he’s hitting .261 with a .855 OPS and a 19.2% strikeout rate. He’s hit four XBH in his last five games while also stealing a couple of bags. He’s locked into that Orioles lineup on a nightly basis. I love the multi-position eligibility and the ability to contribute in multiple categories.

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Middle Infield

Jose Caballero (2B, SS – TB) 

CBS: 50%, Yahoo: 46%, ESPN: 12%

Jose Caballero is here for a good time, not a long time. If you paid attention to his 2023 season, he’s a player who can be good until he just isn’t. Tampa Bay does seem to have a magic touch, though, which has extended to Caballero this season. His speed is the real deal. He swiped 26 bags in just over 100 games last season. He’s not going to hit for any power, but as long as he’s getting on base, he’s always a threat to run. In deeper leagues, he’ll help you with stolen bases and runs, but once he starts to decline, you should cut bait. He makes a great injury fill-in.

Josh Rojas (2B, 3B – SEA) 

CBS: 4%, Yahoo: 1%, ESPN: 1%

Admittedly, I don’t love any middle infield options right now outside of Westburg, who’s already in the corner infield category. I do like Josh Rojas for at least this week, though. He’s the strong side platoon in Seattle and has some juicy matchups this coming week. Five of the seven starters he faces are right-handers and he ends the week playing in Coors Field. He’s got an almost 40% line drive rate and has shown great ability to get on base since being traded to Seattle. Again, another guy void of power, but he should excel in points leagues and give you a good helping of runs with the occasional stolen base mixed in.

Outfield

Edward Olivares (OF – PIT) 

CBS: 18%, Yahoo: 9%, ESPN: 3%

If you listen to my podcast, The Fake Baseball Podcast, you’ll know Edward Olivares is my favorite waiver wire option of the week. Every time you look at Baseball Savant, Olivares has hit another ball 100+ MPH. He has nine 100+ MPH batted ball events so far this season. At one point, six of the nine had gone for triple digits. He has the best sweet spot rate in the league at 58.6% and is striking out less than 17% of the time. He’s got three home runs already. Despite not stealing a base yet, he stole 11 last year in just 107 games. If you’re looking for power, he’s a great option moving forward. The future stolen bases will be a bonus.

Nelson Velazquez (OF – KC) 

CBS: 26%, Yahoo: 17%, ESPN: 5%

One thing Nelson Velazquez has proven during his time in the majors is that he can hit some damn home runs. Throughout his last 65 games, he’s hit 19 of them. Kansas City has had a surprisingly good offense this season and Velazquez has a lot to do with it. While he is somewhat of a platoon player, he’s still expected to get 500+ plate appearances this season. A number that puts him in line to flirt with the 30+ home runs. His swing-and-miss problem will cap his batting average upside but the power will make that easy to overlook. He’s worth an add everywhere you need power. Especially this coming week when the Royals face the White Sox in Chicago and then Baltimore at home.

Starting Pitcher

Max Meyer (SP – MIA) 

CBS: 45%, Yahoo: 45%, ESPN: 8%

He’s a bit more widely rostered than I typically put on here but May Meyer’s name needs to be on this list just in case someone isn’t paying attention. Max Meyer has all of the skills in the world. He was a top prospect. He battled injuries. He just needed a chance. He’s capitalized now that he’s gotten one. Through 17 innings pitches this year he has a 16.9% K-BB rate and has tossed back-to-back quality starts. In Saturday’s game against Atlanta, he managed 23 swinging strikes, the highest number in the majors this season. He’s a slider-first guy with a fastball that touches 95 MPH with lots of run. If he’s available in your league — no matter the size — he’s worth a pickup. Especially with how thin the pitching position is getting at the top.

Keaton Winn (SP – SF) 

CBS: 15%, Yahoo: 2%, ESPN: 1%

I’m not here to try and sell you on two-start pitchers for the week. We have an article just for that. I’m here to bring you the guys I think will be successful. Winn is such a guy. He faces a struggling Marlins team that plays right into his strengths. He’s a splitter/fastball/sinker guy who excels at inducing groundballs. His 59.1% groundball rate is in the 88th percentile this season. Miami leads the league with a 53.1% groundball rate. An entire 5% higher than second-place Atlanta. He’s struggled to get through five innings thus far, but if there were ever a game for it to happen, it would be this one. Winn is a great candidate for a quality start this week, which is what you want to focus on when looking for a pitcher off the waiver wire.

Yariel Rodriguez (SP, RP – TOR) 

CBS: 19%, Yahoo: 0%, ESPN: 1%

After an impressive World Baseball Classic (WBC) run, Yariel Rodriguez finally got his shot at starting a game for the Toronto Blue Jays. Even though he only went 3.2 innings, he still had a strong showing. He struck out 37.5% of the batters he faced, allowing just four hits and a run. He showcased a five-pitch mix and ended the outing with a 39% swinging strike rate. All of this came after he pitched 6.1 scoreless innings in the minors where he struck out 10 and allowed just one hit. It may take a bit of time before they trust him to go six innings but the future looks very bright for Rodriguez. He’s worth adding now before he becomes a household name in the fantasy baseball world.

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