More Waiver Wire Pick-Ups

Posted: April 20, 2011 in Player Pickups

Brandon McCarthy- SP (OAK) -6%
If you read my daily streaming article, you’re already aware of my adoration of Mr. McCarthy. Yes he’s a fifth starter, but on a team with a season ERA of 2.59. He’s fitting in quite well so far, with a 2.45 ERA of his own. In 3 starts he has adopted a new philosophy to pitching: throw strikes and let them hit it to the defense. He did strikeout 7 hitters in his last start, so there’s still solid K potential, just don’t expect him to blow you away. He should however contribute in ERA and Whip which will stay low due to his low walk total (2BB in 22IP) and ability to get double play grounders with his sinker. He will also get deep into games since he’s pitching to contact against most hitters, and that will help raise his win total. I was part of the handful of people that made him 1% owned two weeks ago, now you should go out and raise his rate way up.
Jonny Gomes- OF (CIN) -64%
Gomes is already a hot pickup after his torrid weekend, with his ownership rising 25% in the last week. Luckily, I already had him slotted in my lineup before the streak and was able to reap all of the benefits. Now before you go expecting greatness from Gomes, realize that he is not going to hit for a high average. He’s hitting .240 so far this season, and has a career average of .247. I expect him to end up in the .260-70 range by the end of the year, which is right in line with his average from the last two seasons. Even with the low average, Gomes has an OPS of 1.049 this season, largely due to his major league leading 15 walks and 6 HR (2nd to only Tulo in HR). If you’re searching for some power in the OF, or even at UTL, check and see if Gomes is available. (Also, shout out to Jonny since he’s from Petaluma, CA. Represent the 707 well Mr. Gomes)

I’ve been meaning to write this for a couple days, but my weekend was pretty busy so I didn’t get to it. Of course now the Yahoo writers have caught up with me on a few of the guys, but I still have one they don’t.

Jed Lowrie-2B, SS (BOS) -31%
I drafted Jed in my 14 Team league, banking on him stealing Marco Scutaro’s job. It couldn’t have worked out any better. The Boston middle infielder has started 4 of Boston’s last 6 games, going 15 for 24 (.625 AVG) with 8R, 2HR, and 9 RBI. With the majority of the BoSox hitters struggling, Francona should be forced to continue playing the hot hand, which means more playing time for Jed, and more big numbers for his owners. Go get him.

Sergio Santos-RP (CHW) -17%
If you’re looking for saves, a nice speculative add is Santos. Simply by default he may have a chance at the closing gig for the South Siders. Matt Thornton and Chris Sale were the pre-season picks to close out games for Ozzie Guillen, but both are quickly burning their leashes and Ozzie isn’t one to be patient. Santos has yet to allow a run in 8.2 IP and has 11K’s thus far, with a Whip just over 1.00. Take a chance if you have someone on your bench that you don’t mind parting ways with.

Logan Morrison-OF (FLA) -64%
This second year Marlin outfielder isn’t quite as much of a sleeper as the previous players, but he’s still undervalued. Morrison quietly played very well in 62 games for Florida. He had a stretch of 42 games where he reached base safely, a pretty ridiculous achievement for a rookie. Guess what? He’s at it again this year, having reached base in all 14 games this season. This kid just gets on base, and with an OBP of .429, he gets on base a lot. He doesn’t just walk though, this season his line is as follows: (8/4/11/.327). Don’t expect great power or speed numbers, but he should contribute a bit in those categories, and heavily in Runs, RBI, and AVG. Of course if you’re in an OBP or OPS league he’ll really help you out. If he’s available in your league, pick him up.

Streaming Sleepers has Moved!

Posted: April 12, 2011 in Misc

Fantasy Baseball Cafe was nice enough to host my column on their site, so from now on it will be posted there daily. Here’s a link to the location of my article, go ahead and bookmark that for your convenience. I’ll still post on here occasionally, probably with some players that I think could be ready for a breakout and worthy of more than streaming, so check back every so often. I’ll probably just make note of a new post here on my Cafe column.

Thanks for reading

Streaming sleepers got back on track Saturday with a strong outing from Doug Fister.  Fister took a tough luck loss as the Mariner lineup made Justin Masterson Nolan Ryan for the day.  Masterson may have been my pick if he didn’t have a career road ERA above 6.

Fister’s Line:

Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
0 6.0 1 1.50 2 6 1.33 3 1.5

While we’re at it, we might as well look at Baker’s line from Sunday.  He started off strong, but then gave up two solo shots (go figure).  Then the wheels fell off and Baker was pulled after 5 plus innings.  The bullpen didn’t do him any favors, allowing all of the inherited runners to score.  Luckily, I’m in a 14 team league, so Baker was owned.  I streamed Chris Young and Brandon McCarthy, which couldn’t have worked out better.  Their combined numbers were 1w (Mets pen blew it) 14.1 innings, 3 ER, 10 hits, 2 BB, 10K.  That’s what we’re looking for.  Young only allowed one hit through 7 innings, although watching him pump 84mph fastballs over the plate scared the crap out of me.  on to Baker’s line:

Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
0 5.0 4 7.20 2 7 1.80 5 2.5

Season Totals:

Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
1 37.0 22 5.35 17 47 1.72 33 1.94

None of Monday’s streamers jump out at me.  McClellan is intriguing, but is pitching in Arizona, while Alexi Ogondo gets the ball for Texas, but on the road against a formidable Detroit offense.  I would normally go with McClellan, but my choice hasn’t worked out so well lately, so instead we’re going the other way and stream Jesse Litsch. Litsch doesn’t have great numbers on the road, or against Seattle, and is facing Felix Hernandez.  Luckily he doesn’t have to face the reigning Cy Young award winner.  He just has to face the Mariner hitters, and I’m banking on Seattle not being able to touch him.  Litsch showed his ability to miss bats in his first start, striking out 7 in 6 1/3 innings.  He’s back by a powerful Toronto offense that can hopefully get to Hernandez and pick us up a win.

Streaming Sleepers Pick:

Jesse Litsch (TOR) @ SEA – 2%

Oh, if you didn’t see Sam Fuld’s catch on Saturday, you need to.  That was with 2 outs and the bases loaded too, just to make it that much better.

On Friday, Friday (click the hyperlink, I know you want to) R.A. Dickey had everything working for him, except his knuckleball apparently.   Dickey struggled to find the zone throughout his 5 innings, giving up 5 free passes in addition to allowing 6 hits.  If you’re keeping track at home, that’s a whip over two. On a good note, he managed to strand most of the base runners, limiting his earned runs to only 3.  To give you an idea of the trouble he was in all day, Dickey faced 24 batters and allowed 11 to reach base.  I guess that’s what I get for trusting two Met pitchers in a row.  On to his complete line, shield your eyes, this could get ugly:

Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
0 5.0 3 5.40 5 6 2.20 3 0.6

Season Totals:

Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
1 26.0 17 5.88 13 34 1.81 25 1.92

 

 

There is a bevy of streaming options on the second Sunday of the season.  It’s actually border-line ridiculous, only 7 starters don’t qualify for streaming.  Since there’s so many we won’t waste any more time.

Options:

Chris Young (NYM) vs WAS – 24%

Young was solid in his first start (W, 7K) and is 3-1 with a 2.42 ERA and 24K’s in 4 career starts against the former Expos.  He is also pitching at CitiField, which is just about as pitcher friendly as Petco, his former home where Young posted a 2.85 ERA in 265 innings.  All of this means nothing though, since he is a Met now, and therefore is dead to me.

Annibal Sanchez (FLA) @ HOU – 45%

Sanchez made our options list in his last start, picking up a win while throwing well for 5 2/3 innings and striking out 7.  On Sunday he draws Houston on the road, but that shouldn’t bother him as he’s 3-0 with a 0.70 ERA and 1.03 WHIP in 4 starts.

Erik Bedard (SEA) vs CLE – 27%

When Bedard is healthy he is one of the most talented pitchers in baseball.  Sadly, this is a rare occurrence.  He is healthy now and looks to be a good streaming option since health issues keep his ownership rate down.  He’s posted solid, while not spectacular career numbers against the Tribe, 3.70 ERA and 53K’s in 48 2/3 innings.  If the offense supporting him were better I’d be a lot higher on him. Evidence: King Felix only won 13 games last year.  Enough said.

Streaming Sleepers Pick:

Scott Baker (MIN) vs OAK – 28%

Fantasy experts have had a love affair with Baker’s potential for a couple years now, but steady dominance has failed to materialize.  Long balls are a big part of his struggles.  Chicks must really dig him.  Baker allowed 51 home runs in his last two seasons combined.  That’s a lot, a whole lot.  Luckily for Baker, the Athletics cannot hit home runs.  If it weren’t for Josh Willingham, they’d still be stuck on zero for the season.  There are 42 players that are either tied or ahead of the A’s in home runs so far.  Which Hitchhiker’s fans know is the answer to the ultimate question.  More importantly it means Baker won’t be giving up any dingers Sunday.  Baker has pitched well against Oakland in his career, posting a 3.62 ERA, whip of 0.96 and a record of 4-0.  I like his chances come Sunday.

Jonathon Niese had 7 K’s and 1 BB on Thursday.  The rest of his line mysteriously disappeared, now on to Saturday’s streamers…

Ok, fine, our streamer got rocked again.  In my defense, there weren’t many options, but enough excuses.

Niese’s Line:

   
 
   
Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
0 4.0 6 13.50 1 8 2.25 7 7.00

Season Totals:

Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
1 21.0 12 6.00 8 28 1.72 22 2.75

Saturday brings another empty barrel of quality streamers, but hopefully we’ll strike gold with our pick.  Options include:

Nick Blackburn (MIN) vs OAK – 2%

Blackburn won’t miss many bats, but he will take advantage of his home park this Saturday.  Last season he was 7-4 with a 3.71 ERA and faces a struggling A’s club that has trouble stringing hits together.

Bud Norris (HOU) vs FLA – 11%

In contrast to Blackburn, Norris is a guy who will rack up punch outs.  His problems stem from control and consistency issues.  The Marlins lineup is prone to striking out, and although they have some good hitters, they are not a power house.  Norris has a chance to put up some big numbers against them.

Streaming Sleepers Pick:

Doug Fister (SEA) vs CLE – 1%

Fister must have been made in the same factory as Blackburn, as they’re both sinker guys that don’t strike out many batters.(Just a much bigger factory; Fister is 6’8′)  Their lack of K’s is a large part of their being un-owned.  The difference between the two on Saturday is their matchups.  Fister has marginally better home numbers, but is facing a much more beatable opponent in Justin Masterson, while Blackburn gets Gio Gonzalez.  Masterson struggles on the road, so I like Fister’s chances of picking up the win.

 

Well, if it were easy I suppose everyone would be doing it. Our Wednesday streamer was bad, but at least he wasn’t Fausto Carmona bad. Buehrle was chased after only 5 innings, giving up 5 earned runs, only escaping a loss due to a late surge from the Chicago offense, and a Joakim Soria collapse. Buehrle damaged our season stats severely and only chipped in 2 strikeouts, our lowest total so far. Luckily the season is young.

Buehrle’s Line:
Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
0 5.0 5 9.00 2 8 2.00 2 1.00

Season Totals:
Wins IP ER ERA Walks Hits Whip K K:BB
1 17.0 8 4.24 7 20 1.58 15 2.14

Now on to Friday’s streaming options:
Friday brings many solid streaming options, one gem in particular, but we’ll get to him eventually.

Clayton Richard (SD) vs LAD – 32%
The former White Sock will start us off. Richard gets the Dodgers at Petco this Friday, an always tempting streaming venue. Richard would likely be my pick if our streamer didn’t have absolutely everything working for him, but Clayton isn’t lacking favorable numbers himself. He has a 2.56 ERA in 5 career starts against the boys in blue, winning 4 of those games. He was also solid in his first start, picking up a win while allowing 3 earned in 6 innings against Pujols’s Cardinals. He’s facing fellow lefty Ted Lilly, who was rocked by the World Champions in his only start. The Padres under powered offense should be able push across enough runs for Richard, as they’re scoring over 4 runs a game this season, largely helped by the 11 they provided Richard in his first start.

Jason Vargas (SEA) vs CLE – 6%
Vargas had a strong first start this season, picking up a win in Oakland. He started off last season very strong, posting ERA’s of 3.60, 2.76, and 2.33 in April, May, and June respectively. He was also very good at home last season, where his ERA was 2.86. He faces a below average Cleveland lineup and inconsistent Indian SP Carlos Carrasco gives the Seattle offense a chance to score.

Other options I don’t like quite as much include:

Randy Wolf (MIL) vs CHI – 6%

Travis Wood (CIN) @ ARZ – 50% (he won’t be eligible much longer)

Streaming Sleepers Pick:

R.A. Dickey (NYM) vs WAS – 33%
I absolutely love Dickey’s chances on Friday, which probably means he’ll get shelled like Gaddafi’s compound. For our sake, let’s hope he doesn’t. Dickey has everything going his way. He didn’t allow a run in his first start, (Win @ FLA, 7K). Last season Dickey was terrific at home, (7-3, 1.99ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 2 CG) and also dominated his Friday opponent, the Nationals (3-1, 1.80 ERA, 1.15 WHIP) If those numbers don’t make you feel good about streaming the knuckleballer, I don’t know what will. I’ll be streaming with confidence, you should too.