The hitting week 13 waiver wire is a bit of a strange one because there doesn’t appear to have been many good performances from the players in the 30-50% owned range. The good performances seem to have come from the 70-plus percentage owned players, with a sprinkling of power from the real low-end guys. Add in that some hot hitters now have playing time issues and the wire is pretty thin this week. In some places I’ve been scraping the barrel for fantasy relevant players.
Wellington Castillo, C, ARI: Castillo has not been good this season but there have been signs of revival in the last couple of weeks, as Castillo is hitting in the high 0.280’s with three home runs in that period. His season long batting average is still a pathetic 0.220 with just seven home runs, but he is playing every day and he is starting to offer some offense. In any other group he would be a bit of a fantasy laughing stock but as a catcher he is at least slightly worthy of being owned in 12 team and deeper leagues.
AJ Piersynski, C, ATL: Piersynski is an interesting proposition as a fantasy catcher because he can blow massively hot and cold. He started the year with a power surge before cooling off, and now, with two homers in the last week, he appears to have hit a good patch. At the start of this week he went 10 for 13 with one homer and three RBI and streaks like that have helped his season average rise to a respectable 0.289. He’s not a must own by any measure, but a potential streaming option at a weak position.
Mitch Moreland, 1B, TEX: Okay, so it has been a quieter week for Moreland. But then again, if you were expecting more two-homer games then you were probably in a fairy land. Since those two two-homer games, Moreland has got just one run and one RBI and has found himself moved around the order a little, as the Rangers try to fit back in all their returning pieces. Moreland should remain an everyday option and should regularly bat in the middle of the Rangers order, especially if Josh Hamilton cannot find his feet quickly.
CJ Cron, 1B, LAA: Cron was recalled from AAA last week and celebrated by going a bit crazy. Over the six game stretch he was 9/22 with two homers, nine RBI and five runs scored. This has probably re-established him as the Angels DH, but we will have to see whether that is the case and whether the AAA stint has awoken a new beast until after the Angels leave Colorado. Right now he is on the verge of 12 team ownership given the depth of first base but another good week and his ownership will rocket.
Matt Duffy, 2B/3B, SF: Duffy has slumped a little in the last week or so, hitting around 0.200 with just one run scored. However, he is still a young guy so slumps are to be expected from the inexperienced third baseman and he is still a valuable second base eligible player to own. Another down week or so and he could be a prime buy low candidate.
Rougned Odor, 2B, TEX: It’s starting to appear that the demotion was a great call by the Rangers, as their young second baseman now looks a different hitter altogether. He has hit another home run this last week whilst going 7 for 24 with five RBI and three runs scored. His value is increased if he can bat atop the order, but with the return of DeShields that may not be the case if the speedy outfielder settles in. However, in the middle infield Odor should have value no mateer where he bats as long as he doesn’t return to early season form.
Nick Castellanos, 3B, DET: Castellanos is showing that he can handle the move up the batting order by prospering in the number six position in Cabrera’s absence. In many other line ups Castellanos would probably be a four or five hitter, but with V-Mart, J-Mart and Cespedes he doesn’t stand a shot of getting much higher right now. Castellanos has hit two home runs in the last week with nine RBI and six runs scored at an average of 0.346 propelling him up the third base rankings to around the top 15.
Brad Miller, SS, SEA: Miller is sneakily on pace to have close to a 20/20 season with eight homers and nine steals currently to his name. Unfortunately his average continues to be poor and he is only on pace for 50-60 runs and RBI so he isn’t someone you should go chasing immediately. However, two homers and two steals in the last 15 days whilst batting in the mid 300’s could be a sign that he is set for a nice second half.
Odubel Herrera, SS/OF, PHI: Herrera has decided he doesn’t want to let his team mate Hernandez have all the fun, and has woken up again out his slump after having a decent start to the season. In the last week Herrera has doubled his home run total for the season and added another steal to take him to nine on the season. The power probably isn’t anything to be excited about, but it is worth noting both came on the road as opposed to hitter friendly Philly. Herrera is only even a consideration as a middle infield option in 14 team leagues.
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Marlon Byrd, OF, CIN (Power): Byrd is one of those risk reward players for fantasy owners. The reward of owning Byrd is outstanding power for relatively cheap but in order to get it you have to accept that you will also get poor batting average. Byrd was dropped in a lot of leagues when he went on the DL so should be available in many leagues and is a must own if you need power.
Gerardo Parra, OF, MIL: I chose to ignore Parra in last week’s article and since then he has made me look a bit silly. Parra was expected to lose his job to the returning Khris Davis but he responded by batting over 0.450 with three homers, one steal, five RBI and 10 runs scored. He was rested Tuesday for Davis but was back in the line-up Wednesday making me think he is in the prime seat to keep hold of the job while he keeps hitting. This is one to own in five outfield leagues as a fifth outfielder/bench option and be ready to drop him if Davis reclaims his job.