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2B and SS Waiver Wire Pickups for Week 3

We're 10 days into the season, but it's never too early to start tinkering around the edges. Hopefully you grabbed Ryan McMahon in time for his three-homer game last week. He's now rostered in over three-quarters of Yahoo leagues, and after going deep again on Saturday that number is likely to rise.

Not every player that gets written up in this feature will go on to have that kind of monster game. Some may not provide any value to your fantasy squad, and those that do might only prove useful for a brief period. It's the nature of the beast; if these players were slam dunks, they wouldn't be widely available for free. We're looking for plausible upside with naught but opportunity costs. By considering a wide swath of factors including but not limited to evidence of a change in approach, favorable upcoming schedules, and plain ol' potential, the goal is simply to find as much marginal value as possible.

As a reminder, we'll be looking at pickups for shallow leagues (30 -49% rostered) and deeper formats (10-29%), as well as highlighting player(s) in the single digits who deserve a spot on your watch list at the very least. These are your second base and shortstop waiver wire pickups for Week 3 - April 12th through April 18th.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers received five total writing awards and 13 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, tops in the industry! Congrats to all the award winners and nominees including Best MLB Series, NFL Series, NBA Writer, PGA Writer and Player Notes writer of the year. Be sure to follow their analysis, rankings and advice all year long, and win big with RotoBaller! Read More!

 

Pickups for Shallow Leagues

Eduardo Escobar, 2B/3B, Arizona Diamondbacks (40% rostered)

Escobar followed up a career season (.269-94-35-118-5) in 2019 with an abysmal 2020 campaign. His underlying metrics didn't fully support the bottom falling out, but the performance still scared off enough fantasy managers to send his ADP plummeting to 291. While he managed only one hit in the first five games of this season, Escobar homered on both Thursday and Friday and has four runs, five RBI, and a stolen base in his last three contests. If you're dealing with a hole at the keystone after Ketel Marte went down, his teammate could help patch it.

Luis Arraez, 2B/3B/OF, Minnesota Twins (35% rostered)

Even after going hitless on Saturday, Arraez is still batting .320/.400/.480 so far. He doesn't have much pop (home run last week notwithstanding) and he doesn't steal bases, but through 513 plate appearances in the majors he's a career .333 hitter. The 9.4% walk rate is a nice bonus as well, especially since he's been serving as the primary leadoff hitter. Josh Donaldson's return won't do anything other than push Arraez to left field. Arraez is a great option to bring balance to the roster if you're a bit heavy on low-average sluggers, especially since you can plug him in at three positions.

Ha-Seong Kim, 2B/SS, San Diego Padres (31% rostered)

Reports have emerged that Fernando Tatis Jr. could be back from the injured list after the minimum 10 days, but his shoulder is almost certain to be a going concern. This would open things up for Kim, who has started every game at short since Tatis went down. His first week in MLB could have gone better (.417 OPS and a CS in 25 plate appearances) but he went 1-for-3 with a homer and two runs scored on Saturday. Kim's consistent excellence and combination of power and speed in the KBO made him a popular late-round target in some drafts, but he remains free to add in seven of 10 leagues right now. Any manager who drafted Tatis would do well to snag Kim as a handcuff.

 

Pickups for Deeper Leagues

Jazz Chisholm, 2B/SS, Miami Marlins (21% rostered)

Given that he hit .220 in Double-A in 2019, ran a 16% whiff rate as a prospect, and has hit .171 so far in the big leagues, it feels safe to assume Chisholm is going to be a batting average anchor. But he also draws a good number of walks, he can steal bases, and when he does make contact it can look like this:

Just Chisholm turning on a 100 MPH Jacob deGrom fastball and sending it into the upper deck like he's doing his taxes, no big deal. Naturally, deGrom didn't make a single other mistake on the day but lost anyway, because his teammates actively hate him.

Tommy La Stella, 1B/2B/3B, San Francisco Giants (15% rostered)

The Star hasn't played much to this point due to some back tightness, but he was back in the leadoff spot for the Giants on Saturday and went 2-for-3 with a double, a walk, and a run scored. In 2019 and 2020, La Stella hit .289/.356/.471 with 21 homers and 149 R+BI in 135 games, while walking more than he struck out. If you like Arraez's high-contact ways, lineup slot, and versatility, but need a little more pop: Here's your guy.

 

The Watch List

Amed Rosario, SS, Cleveland (8% rostered)

Rosario's outlook in Cleveland remains murky - he's played both shortstop and center field, and even led off on Friday, but he's also been benched three times already. But neither Ben Gamel nor Andres Jimenez are blowing anyone's doors off right now, and Rosario averaged 12 HR/21 SB while hitting .273 in 2018-19. If he hits, he'll play, and if he plays, there's sneaky value potential here.



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