It’s time to hit the waiver wire!
Bats are warming up, and baseball is in full swing—pun intended!
This week, Christian Yelich hit for the cycle in a game with 25 total runs scored. Meanwhile, rookie Reid Detmers threw a no-hitter, while Nestor Cortes and Justin Verlander both flirted with one.
It looks like teams are settling in. Over the past couple of weeks, the guys on today’s list have been getting into the groove. There is some speed and batting average to be found out there, and maybe a rookie to watch.
Jesus Aguilar (1B) MIA
It’s time to give Jesus Aguilar some love. The everyday first baseman and veteran is batting .327 with two home runs and 9 RBI across the last two weeks. On the season, Aguilar has 14 RBI and is batting .260. Last season he finished with 22 homers and 93 RBI, and he’s probably on your waiver wire.
Kolten Wong (2B) MIL
Kolten Wong has been looking frisky across the past two weeks, picking up ten hits in the last eight games for the Brew Crew. He’s batting leadoff for a team that has scored the third-most runs in the league on a per-game basis, and he’s also stolen six bases this season.
Andres Gimenez (2B/SS) CLE
The Cleveland Guardians are one of the best-hitting teams in baseball. No, that is not a typo. Cleveland has scored the fifth-most runs on a per-game basis, with the seventh-most extra-base hits. Andres Giminez has been getting in on the action. Across the past two weeks of play, Giminez is batting .357 with 11 RBI, two home runs, and a stolen base. Even if his power wanes a bit, he can boost your batting average and contribute some speed. Statcast says his expected batting average is .292 and his sprint speed is in the top 4% of the league.
Juan Yepez (1B/3B) STL
OK, it’s a limited sample size, but Yepez is batting .444 since being called up one week ago. Yepez hit nine homers and knocked in 26 runs while hitting .279 in only 22 games of minor league play before making it to the big show, and so far, he looks like he fits in just fine. The Cards could use the extra pop in the lineup, and they should find a way to keep his bat in the mix. Yepez has already homered – twice- and he is a source of power that won’t cost you batting average.
Harrison Bader (OF) STL
This is a category play. Bader doesn’t hit the ball very hard, but he has a sprint speed in the 94th percentile, and he’s already swiped seven bags this year. He’s striking out a career-low 15% this season, and he’s been hitting the ball well for the past two weeks, batting .279 with three homers and eight RBI. He’s a hot hand right now, and even if the hitting cools off, he is still a speed threat.
Austin Hays (OF)BAL
Austin Hays didn’t get the memo that Camden isn’t a hitter’s park anymore. On the season, he’s batting .312 with three homers and 12 runs scored, and across the past two weeks, he’s batting .388.
Ben Gamel (OF) PIT
Statcast says Ben Gamel’s expected batting average is in the top 3% of the league. He’s making great contact, batting .333 vs. breaking and off-speed pitches and .270 vs. fastballs. On the season, he’s hitting .290 with two home runs, 12 RBI and two stolen bases.
George Kirby (SP) SEA
On Sunday, Kirby had a strong debut for the Mariners, striking out seven and allowing no earned runs through six innings pitched. His fastball averaged 95.8 mph, and he induced 15 swinging strikes, mostly on the fastball, which he threw 60% of the time. But most impressively, Kirby walked zero batters, showing the same excellent control he showed in the minors, where he walked fewer than two batters per nine across three seasons of play. That kind of control, paired with excellent velocity and the ability to miss bats, makes Kirby a must-add.
Josh Winder (SP) MIN
Winder had two consecutive strong six-inning starts, allowing only five hits and no earned runs across 12 innings pitched, before running into the streaking Astros on Thursday afternoon. The Astros knocked him out after 3.1 innings pitched, during which he allowed six hits and three earned runs.
Winder has a four-pitch mix and shows strong command. His fastball has touched 96.8 on the gun, and his slider and changeup generate a lot of swings and misses. In fact, Winder has generated 26 swings and misses across his last two starts, with 15 strikeouts.
In the minors, Winder walked only 1.6 batters per nine innings. If that kind of control can translate to the minors, Winder could be a fantasy asset.
With Chris Paddack missing time due to elbow inflammation, Winder could be around for a while.
Patrick Corbin (SP) WSH
I know, I know. It’s tough to trust Corbin. But he is a veteran that has been excellent before, and he’s almost certainly on your waiver wire. This week, Corbin has his best start of the season, pitching five innings without allowing a run vs. the Mets. He induced 10 swings and misses, and his fastball was up a tick. In a deeper league, he could be worth a stash.
Martin Perez (SP) TEX
Remember last week when I said I was all in on Martin Perez? Well, ditto to all of that, and add in that his ERA across the past two weeks is .89 with 14 strikeouts.
Yusei Kikuchi (SP) TOR
Kikuchi is another veteran who should probably be on your bench if he decides to dial in. Kikuchi had a no-hitter going through five innings vs. the Yankees this week, and in his previous start vs. the Yankees last week, he allowed only one earned run.
More fantasy & MLB coverage:
- Young Players Worth Adding
- Buy-Low Candidates After Slow Starts
- Don’t Give Up on These Three Hitters
- MLB Hitters Are Not Living Up to Expectations