One of the keys to a successful fantasy baseball campaign is to be active on the waiver wire. Here are a few guys to consider to strengthen your roster.
Catcher: Austin Barnes
The Dodgers are hitting home runs for fun (18 already this season) and Barnes is getting the lion’s share of time behind the plate. His patient approach with a bit of pop has resulted in two home runs and .471 OBP, in a position that is often a drain on a fantasy team.
First base: Pete Alonso
Still only owned in about half of leagues, despite starting six of the last seven games for the Mets. To say Alonso crushes is an understatement. His 113 MPH, 444 feet homer with a launch angle of just 21 degrees was described as “frozen rope”.
Second base: Kolten Wong
One of the best five-category players over the opening few games and he is still available in four out of 10 leagues. Who knows if it is sustainable, but Wong is walking, launching dingers, stealing bases and hitting for an excellent average.
Shortstop: Tim Beckham
The former No.1 overall pick flashed brilliance for short periods, so this hot start to the season is not totally surprising. He has hit three home runs with an impressive 14% walk-rate and he is still available in 25% of leagues.
Third base: Maikel Franco
With all eyes on Bryce Harper and Rhys Hoskins in the heart of the Phillies’ lineup, it is Franco who has started the season like a man possessed. Perhaps this is the breakout that we have expected since he debuted in 2014. Three home runs and seven walks to just two strikeouts, and he is available in one-third of leagues.
Outfield: Randal Grichuk
Blue Jays have tied up the 27-year-old with an extension to keep his services in Toronto. There is a lot of swing and miss in Grichuk’s game but he possesses 35-homer potential, especially in the batter-friendly environs of Rogers Center.
Deep league outfielder: Tyler O’Neill
In half a season in Triple-A last year, O’Neill hit .311 (1.078 OPS) with 26 homers. He offers a level of power and patience that gets players into MVP consideration. With Marcell Ozuna banged up, O’Neill could transition into an everyday role.
Two-start pitcher: Joey Lucchesi
The Padres face Derek Holland and the soft-hitting Giants on Tuesday, followed by Zack Greinke in Phoenix on Sunday. Lucchesi has made two starts with 11.32 SO/9 and is yet to allow a run, and is available in 25% of leagues.
Deep league pitcher: Jordan Zimmermann
No-one expected Zimmermann to start the season tossing 13⅔ innings allowing just one run and one walk, but he has the opportunity to extend the hot start when he faces the struggling Indians on Tuesday. Zimmermann is available on 90% of leagues.
Closer: Greg Holland
Anointed as the Diamondbacks closer, Holland has picked up two saves and is yet to allow a run. He is still available in 60% of leagues.
We have a couple of great fantasy baseball minds at Bat Flips and Nerds, so make sure you read Russell’s article on his TGFBI draft and of course, Darius Austin is a font of fantasy baseball knowledge, so ensure you follow him on Twitter @DariusA64