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Austin Barnes (C, LAD) - Week 9 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in Two-Catcher Leagues

ROSTERED IN: 4% of leagues

ANALYSIS: Picture this scenario: the 2020 MLB season is winding down, you need stolen bases wherever you can get them, and you aren't fortunate enough to roster the likes of J.T. Realmuto, Christian Vazquez, or Isiah Kiner-Falefa at backstop. In two-catcher leagues where the pickens get slim, Austin Barnes emerges as a prime choice. Though the month of September has yet to be kind to Barnes, his strong showing in August warrants enough optimism for a rolling of the dice as the stakes are raised.

In 48 August AB, Barnes produced two doubles, a HR, nine runs, eight RBI, a .313/.358/.417 slash, and two steals. The issue in Barnes's bat has been in his reduced line drive rate of 13.5% and his increased grounder rate of 48.1%. Despite that, he has also put up his best soft contact rate on batted balls since 2015 (20.4%) and the best hard contact rate on batted balls of his career by 10.3% (42.6%). His speed score may be down a tick, but at 4.3, he still ranks as one of the most likely catchers to swipe a bag, and that propensity is magnified in value when considering how potent the Dodger offense has been throughout 2020. If you are trying to stuff a few choice categories in a league that demands two catchers in your lineup, it is worth taking a chance on Austin Barnes to close out the campaign with a decent BA and OBP.


Check out RotoBaller's entire fantasy baseball waiver wire pickups and sleepers list, updated daily!

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