MLB Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Pickups: Week 10

Week 10 is a day away, and we look back at Week 9. Mallex Smith showed his fantasy worth with plenty of stolen bases over the last week, while Kevin Kiermaier continued to point his bat in the right direction. We saw some injuries to Mitch Moreland, Steve Pearce, Tommy Pham, Avisail Garcia, and Luke Weaver. Justin Turner is also dealing with a hamstring injury. This week has some enticing options on the waiver wire, and most should be available in your league.

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Infielders

Asdrubal Cabrera – 2B, 3B, SS – 41% Owned

Asdrubal Cabrera has headed into Texas, and has found himself apart of the normal Texas splits it seems. he has a .365 wOBA at home and a .254 wOBA on the road. A lot of this is because his power is so much higher. Hard-contact is there, and his groundball rate is just 33%. Cabrera is chipping in with RBI and HR, but the average kills him a bit. His .243 BABIP isn’t helping this season, but his .206 ISO is still a plus in the fantasy department. Depending on your league size and roster format, Cabrera may or may not be out there, but is a strong option.

Addison Russell – 2B, SS – 7% Owned

Addison Russell is back in the Cubs lineup, playing middle infield giving him eligibility at both. Russell has never been a powerhouse shortstop option for fantasy, but works his way into a strong offense and has decent production. He has a .236 ISO and sub 20% strikeout rate so far in 20 games. His wRC+ sits at 120, and he has shown some pop, already one shy of his 2018 HR total. Hard-contact is way up from his career norm, sitting at 41% on the season. The HR/FB rate will regress a bit, but Russell is a fill-in option if you are in need of replacing a shortstop.

Outfielders

Oscar Mercado – OF – 29% Owned

The Indians offense continues to rotate guys around hoping they stick, and Oscar Mercado has been one of them. He is a big SB threat, as he stole 30+ bases a few times in the minors, and also had 50 SB back in 2015 when he was in Single-A with the Cardinals. He has two on the season already, but also a 46% hard-contact rate and 24% line drive rate as well. His contact numbers have been decent down in the minors, and his production should continue in Cleveland. The .382 BABIP is going to come down, but he should remain in line to get some SB.

Jason Heyward – OF – 12% Owned

I feel the next two outfielders are guys we go back and forth on all of the time. Jason Heyward had a hot start to the season, and then fell off in May. His BABIP took a major dip, and his strikeouts went up a little. His batted ball stats remained the same otherwise. We saw Heyward heat up over the summer last season. He has an 83% contact this season against right-handers, and his walk rate is still a plus.

Kole Calhoun – OF – 18% Owned

Kole Calhoun has reached double-digit home runs this season already, and has a .200+ ISO against both lefties and righties. His numbers against righties are strong, sitting with a .381 wOBA and .271 ISO. Calhoun’s hard-contact rate is also at 51%, which is in the 81st percentile. His xSLG and xwOBA are also above average. He is barreling more baseballs this season, which is 6% higher than the league average. The average isn’t going to rise too much, but his power is helpful in most categories.

Pitchers

Spencer Turnbull – SP – 34% Owned

Spencer Turnbull has been underrated this season. He has 64 strikeouts in 66.2 innings pitched, sitting with a 2.84 ERA. Turnbull has an above average fastball, and doesn’t allow much hard-contact. Expected stats against him are strong, and he works five pitches which is another advantage. Sure he doesn’t play for a winning team, but Turnbull can bring some consistency to your lineup. He has allowed over three earned runs just once in 12 starts this season.

Trevor Richards – SP – 16% Owned

Hitters have a .221 xBA against Trevor Richards this season, and a 21.2% strikeout rate. The walk rate is double-digits, which the real knock against him. He has notched 55 strikeouts in 61.1 innings, and has a sub-four ERA at the moment. He is another one on a bad team, but pitches in a plus ballpark. Richards has a 12.7% swinging strike rate this season, up 2% from last year. Contact numbers have dropped for hitters. The walks still present the biggest issue for Richards, but he is worthy of taking a shot on.

Steven Matz – SP – 46% Owned

A lot of us have wanted to see Steven Matz turn out better than he has. However, he is coming off a sub-four ERA season with a career ERA under dour. Home runs are a concern still, and that doesn’t seem to be going away. He does have 51 strikeouts in 50.2 innings pitched this season, and hitters have a .329 xwOBA against him. His walk rate has been better this season at 7.4%, and he is another one who pitches in a positive ballpark.

Players I’m Watching

John Means, BAL, 33%
Felix Pena, LAA, 10%
Griffin Canning, LAA, 38%
Tyler Skaggs, LAA, 34%
Tanner Roark, CIN, 29%
Jeff McNeil, NYM, 41%
Travis Shaw, MIL, 33%
Cavan Biggio, TOR, 23%
Kyle Seager, SEA, 20%

  
Jason Guilbault has been writing and podcasting in the fantasy sports world for over five years. You can find his work at Daily Fantasy Cafe. He is an avid Tottenham fan, and follows the Boston sports teams. When he isn’t diving into stats, he is enjoying the outdoors or down at the local brewery.

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