X
Lost password?

Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

X

Receive free daily analysis

NFL
NBA
NHL
NASCAR
CFB
MLB
MMA
PGA
ESPORTS
BETTING

Already have an account? Log In

X

Forgot Password


LINEUP RESOURCES

Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Draft Rankings
Draft Simulator
Enter League Settings
Player Comparisons
Rookies & Call-Ups
24x7 News and Alerts

Deeper AL-Only Waiver Wire Sleepers for Week 4

Every week in baseball, a significant player will hit the disabled list, slip into a slump, or get traded out of a good spot. How fantasy owners adapt to these situations can make or break the season as a whole. One lousy add might not hurt the long-term standing of a team, but failing to take advantage of breakouts or impact bats before others sure can.

The primary challenge of playing in an NL or AL-only league is often the lack of options regarding adding and subtracting players when needed. In mixed leagues, the players on the waiver wire are usually starting for an NL-only staff. So then how does one wade through the names of players that even regular fantasy players have never heard of, and that often will not even start for their teams to begin with? That is where this series comes in.

Instead of owners spending time digging the waiver wire for 0% owned players, this article will give owners a player at each position to fill the gap, or at the least, keep an eye on to add or stash. Not all of these players will replace that injury, but offer the best option off the scrap heap. Often the players advocated for here are long shots due to the nature of shallow leagues. No quick fixes, but some upside that could turn into much more. Now, onto the AL version of the Island of Misfit Fantasy Toys.

Featured Promo: Get your 2023 MLB Premium Pass for 50% off. Exclusive access to our preseason Draft Kit, #1 accuracy rankings, #1 ATC projections, Team Sync platform, Live Draft Assistant, 15 in-season lineup tools, customized rankings and much more! Sign Up Now!

 

C - Martin Maldonado (C, KC)

1% owned

After having a hard time finding a gig to enter this season, Maldonado was signed to cover for the injured Salvador Perez in Kansas City. Playing every day and batting eighth, fantasy owners know what to expect from the veteran catcher. So far, in 18 games, he is slashing .167/.265/.217 with no homers and six runs. Thus, owners are not running to add the batting-average crater that is Maldonado, but there are some signs of lingering usefulness.

First, the BABIP sits at .213, which is again, not ideal, but shows that there has been bad luck for far in the profile. The other good sign is that his exit velocity is up to 86.3 from 84.7 last season. Add in that he will get to hit in some good hitter’s park in Progressive and Comerica, there is a reason to be hopeful. If the batting line can move up a bit, there are runs to be had, or stream him versus the division to squeeze out some value.

 

1B - Brandon Dixon (1B/OF, DET)

0% owned

After bouncing from the Dodgers to the Reds, Dixon seems to finally have a path to playing time with the Tigers. While playing mostly at first so far, he will also keep outfield eligibility, making him a good stash with playing time upside. His first stint in the Majors, over 74 games for the Reds, Dixon was reasonably regrettable. He posted a .178/.218/.356 slash with five homers and 14 runs, and Dixon was nothing more than a power dart. Add in a 34.7 K%, and there was no reason to keep him in Cincinnati.

And yet, the tools are there. Dixon's career line in the minors was a .273 batting average with 18 homers. While he has not shown it in the Majors, Dixon is a good hitter. Even if that batting line comes down to the .240-.250 range, that could be an impact bat for some fantasy teams. The other interesting piece was a 9.3 Barrel% with the Reds, so there is contact to play with for offensive value. Assuming he can find his form, this is the cheap option to bet on at first this week.

 

2B - Danny Santana (2B/OF, TEX)

4% owned

After moving from Minnesota to Atlanta, Santana found himself on the outside of a job looking in last year. After signing with Texas this campaign, Santana benefitted from the Rougned Odor injury, so his playing time might only be there in the short term. And yet, if he continues to hit, that could change. So far, in eight games, he is slashing .290/.313/.516 with one homer and four stolen bases. With Arlington still playing as one of the best hitter’s parks, Santana could see this run continue.

The main change in the hitting profile has been the launch angle, with a 19.5 mark this year, after a career 9.8 coming into this year. Even more, the K% is down to 18.2% after last year’s 34.2% mark. While small sample size alert exists for the production, there is a minor league pedigree to buy into and a team that will put up runs. When he adds shortstop eligibility, his value will jump even more, so buy him while he is cheap.

 

3B - Tommy La Stella (2B/3B, LAA)

4% owned

To be fair, most of the value for La Stella so far has come from two elite games. Still, there are enough signs that the profile is trending towards fantasy relevance. So far this year he is slashing .237/.338/.559 with six homers. For comparison, last year, in 123 games for the Cubs, he slashed .266/.340/.331 with one homer. The main difference is that last year he was a late-game play, with occasional starts. This year, he has been starting more often, with 22 games so far. Playing time increases the counting stat floor, and with the eligibility, he could move around a bit. Even more, the slugging line is up enough to show that the small drop in batting average is being turned into more power at the plate.

The other vital sign is that he is seeing more pitches per plate appearance, with 3.93 this year compared to 3.78 the year prior. Both of these numbers are below his career average, so there is some helium in the rate, but a good sign compared to last year. Even more, the BABIP sits at .163, so expect the rate stats to jump as well. With injuries and slumps to others opening the door, La Stella is a great profile to buy in on for the rest of the season.

 

SS - Eric Sogard (2B/SS, TOR)

1% owned

After being a semi-regular for the Athletics, and a reliable bench option for the Brewers, Sogard might finally have found his way into a regular role for the time being. With Lourdes Gurriel Jr. being sent down to Triple-A, Sogard suddenly finds himself batting leadoff. Even more, he is slated to split time with Alen Hanson, on the long side of the platoon. Playing time is the main sell for Sogard, but the bat also has a place at MI. Sogard also fits into Toronto's plans with a bit of leadership support in what will be a young locker room soon. This means there are reasons to keep him around, even with some struggles at the plate.

And yet, so far this year, Sogard is slashing .385/.392/.577. Expect the batting average to move off an MVP pace, but the OBP shows that Sogard can still get on base. Taking out last year’s mark, Sogard, for his career has a .327 OBP, so there is a track record owners can count on with at-bats. While Toronto may not win many games, owners should want anyone potentially hitting in front of Vladimir Guerrero Jr. the rest of the way. And hey, you should get extra points for those glasses.

 

OF - Ryan Cordell (OF, CWS)

1% owned

Recently recalled to the White Sox, Cordell has been a slow mover within the system after being drafted in 2013. Always known as a batter who would need to hit for more power to stick, he only hit four homers over 51 games across three levels last year. And yet, after just 10 games in the bigs, he has two dingers, and the other numbers look good in terms of what he is doing.

Cordell is making hard contact with a 36.8 Hard%, and getting on base with a .431 WOBA. After playing all week, Cordell appears to be the direct replacement for Daniel Palka. If so, expect Cordell to get at least the same 20 games to prove what he has for the team. With the White Sox not expecting to compete, there is every chance that the early season numbers are accurate, that Cordell could be a building block. Buy into the early season production, and in the worse case, he's Palka 2.0.

 

OF - Robbie Grossman (OF, OAK)

1% owned

As a switch hitter, the Athletics are using Grossman on both sides of multiple platoons. Due to this, and after playing in 18 games, Grossman is getting more of a run than expected based on his draft price. This means that owners can look back to his recent spell with the Twins to see a .250/.360/.380 hitter with double-digit homer power. If that is what he can offer, AL-only owners can surely find a spot, and five outfield leagues the same.

At his best, Grossman can push a .280 batting line, but at his worst, he can sink to the low .200s. And yet, he gets on base and therefore seems to be a perfect fit for the Athletics. Owners need to balance him out with a power source, but Grossman can be played like a poor man’s D.J. LeMahieu. When the Athletics score often via the long-ball, Grossman will be a source of runs, with an upside that is intriguing to fantasy owners.

 

OF - Hunter Pence (OF, TEX)

1% owned

Many thought that Pence was done after last year’s exit with the Giants. Texas added him to the spring roster on a minor-league deal, and he beat out Willie Calhoun for the final roster spot. So far the move has paid off, with a .297/.325/.486 slash through 37 ABs. Add in the three homers, and even in a part-time role, Pence is offering good value off the bench. Seemingly splitting time with Shin-Soo Choo, Pence is in a spot to earn more chances if he keeps producing.

What also adds some interest to the profile is that Pence's plate approach is different. So far in 2019, he has a flatter swing, but a better contact. The launch angle is down to 1.3 from a career 11 mark, but the exit velocity is four points above his career norm. Pence has also cut the K% from 23 to 20%, so all signs are moving in the right direction. If he can turn into a more regular contact hitter, Pence has the track record to buy into a high batting line, with power due to the park. This means that even with less loft of the swing, Pence can rack up some cheap homers in Texas, and owners might get to get a .300 batting average in their roster.

 

SP - Jefry Rodriguez (SP, CLE)

1% owned

When Mike Clevinger hit the Injured List, Cleveland was left in a bit of a bind. A.J. Cole was the next man up on the depth chart, but he has not pitched enough this year to be ready after just starting at Triple-A Columbus. Rodriguez was added in the offseason as a piece of the Yan Gomes trade and was talked about as a potential impact reliever when he made his debut this spring. And yet, Cleveland has kept him in a starter’s role, and has called him up twice. So far, he has been superb.

Through 12.2 innings Rodriquez has an ERA of 2.13 with a 13.6 K%. While the latter number might seem underwhelming, with a career line of 23%, expect this to rise. This also means that the power pitcher does not need the punch-out to get outs, which is encouraging. While the minor league numbers are not great, the raw tools are there, and he has the skills to be a solid starter for this team. With Clevinger out for a while, expect the righty to get his chance to win the job. When the Cleveland offense is starting to hit, Rodriquez will run into wins with starts over the next few weeks.

 

RP - Brandon Workman (RP, BOS)

1% owned

While the rest of the bullpen is a mess, Workman has quietly put together his best run in the Majors since he debuted in 2013. When he was in the minors, and on the prospect list, Workman was known as a starter with an SP4 profile. While lacking the stuff to make the jump to the bullpen on merit, Workman has found it hard to fit that type of role after missing on the rotation. With a fastball that only tops out at 91, Workman has morphed into a pitch-to-contact arm out of the pen. This has pushed his WHIP up to 1.25; it is passable, but just not good enough for fantasy leagues.

The issues have been the contact rate, with a .400 slugging mark. The interesting thing is that this year his normally above-average walk rate has shot up to 18%, but the opponents' batting average has dropped to a .159 XBaA. The latter mark places him in the top 15% of current pitchers. When looking to the pitching chart, Workman is throwing to the edges of the plate more, and this has moved him off the heart of the plate. While not pretty, the new wild Workman seems to be more productive and rosterable in fantasy leagues. Do not expect him to jump into the closer battle, but he has the skills to be Boston's Ryan Pressly.

More Waiver Wire Pickups and Streamers


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




LINEUP RESOURCES

Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Draft Rankings
Draft Simulator
Enter League Settings
Player Comparisons
Rookies & Call-Ups
24x7 News and Alerts

ROTOBALLER PLAYER NEWS

Tee Higgins3 hours ago

Not Concerned About Contract Situation
Jeff Skinner4 hours ago

Scores Game-Winning Goal In Overtime
Devon Levi4 hours ago

Earns Victory In NHL Debut
A.J. Puk6 hours ago

Picks Up Save For Marlins Friday
Rhys Hoskins6 hours ago

Undergoes Successful Knee Surgery
Nick Solak6 hours ago

Mariners Acquire Nick Solak From Reds
Justin Verlander6 hours ago

Does Some Throwing On Friday
Justin Verlander6 hours ago

Does Some Light Throwing
Luis Urías6 hours ago

Luis Urias Reportedly Heading To Injured List
Joey Wiemer7 hours ago

Reportedly Will Be Called Up
Anthony Rendon7 hours ago

Being Investigated By MLB
Willson Contreras7 hours ago

Receives Good News On Friday
Seattle Seahawks8 hours ago

Ryan Neal Becomes Free Agent
Pharaoh Brown8 hours ago

Joins Colts
Darrynton Evans8 hours ago

To Meet With Colts
Laquon Treadwell9 hours ago

Working Out For Cowboys
Zach Collins9 hours ago

Out Against Golden State
De'Andre Hunter9 hours ago

Out With A Knee Injury On Friday
Oscar Gonzalez9 hours ago

Starting On Friday
Obi Toppin9 hours ago

Will Start Against The Cavs
Jarrett Allen9 hours ago

Downgraded To Out On Friday
Nelson Cruz9 hours ago

Batting Cleanup On Friday
Mike Moustakas9 hours ago

Remains Out Again
Michael Brantley10 hours ago

Takes Batting Practice
Andrew Vaughn10 hours ago

Sitting On Friday
Gavin Sheets12 hours ago

Oscar Colas Starting On Friday
Paul Sewald12 hours ago

Picks Up Win On Opening Day
Garrett Whitlock12 hours ago

Making Rehab Start Friday
Josh Rojas12 hours ago

Hitting Leadoff Against Dodgers
Corey Julks12 hours ago

Making MLB Debut Against White Sox
Bryan Reynolds12 hours ago

Opt-Out Clause The Sticking Point For Bryan Reynolds Extension
Portland Trail Blazers12 hours ago

LaMarcus Aldridge Officially Retires From The NBA
Corbin Carroll12 hours ago

Hitting Fifth Against Right-Hander
Jamal Murray12 hours ago

Considered Questionable Against Phoenix
Nikola Jokic12 hours ago

Could Miss His Second Consecutive Game
Kenyon Martin12 hours ago

Jr. Uncertain To Play Against Detroit
Tobias Harris12 hours ago

Could Miss Friday's Game Against Toronto
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander13 hours ago

Upgraded To Questionable On Friday
Al Horford13 hours ago

Uncertain To Suit Up On Friday
Jaylen Brown13 hours ago

Tagged As Questionable With Lower-Back Pain
Jayson Tatum13 hours ago

Listed As Questionable Against Utah
Kelly Olynyk13 hours ago

Is Available Against Boston On Friday
De'Andre Hunter13 hours ago

Downgraded To Out On Friday
Trayveon Williams15 hours ago

Bengals Have High Hopes For Trayveon Williams
Joe Burrow15 hours ago

Bengals Begin Extension Discussions With Joe Burrow
Mac Jones15 hours ago

Bill Belichick Still Non-Committal On Mac Jones
Sammy Blais17 hours ago

Extends Point Streak To Six Games
Cam Talbot17 hours ago

Makes A Winning Return
Matthew Beniers17 hours ago

Logs Two Points Against Anaheim
Stuart Skinner17 hours ago

Grabs A 43-Save Shutout
Tristan Jarry17 hours ago

Records His Second Shutout
Matthew Tkachuk17 hours ago

Rolls To Four Points Versus Montreal
T.J. Oshie18 hours ago

Exits With An Upper-Body Injury
Mikey Anderson18 hours ago

Injured On First Shift Thursday
CJ McCollum18 hours ago

Drops 23 Points In Easy Win Over Denver
Jamal Murray18 hours ago

Salvages Solid Performance In Loss
Brandon Ingram19 hours ago

Secures A Triple-Double Against Denver
Jaylen Brown19 hours ago

Collects Another 30-Point Game
Jayson Tatum19 hours ago

Drops 40 Points In Blowout Win
Naz Reid19 hours ago

Set To Miss Significant Amount Of Time
Linus Ullmark1 day ago

Allows One Goal In Overtime Victory
David Pastrnak1 day ago

Scores Game-Winning Goal
Baltimore Ravens1 day ago

Ravens Have Been Active In Receiver Market
Baker Mayfield1 day ago

Kyle Trask To Compete In Training Camp
Courtland Sutton1 day ago

Broncos Could Still Trade Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton
DeAndre Hopkins1 day ago

To Stay With Cardinals?
Odell Beckham Jr.1 day ago

Jets The Most Likely Landing Spot For Odell Beckham Jr.
Carolina Panthers1 day ago

Panthers Not Settled On One QB For No. 1 Pick
Lamar Jackson1 day ago

Not Seeking Fully Guaranteed Deal
Nathan Peterman1 day ago

Re-Signs With Bears
Ryan Lindgren1 day ago

A Game-Time Decision Against New Jersey
Seth Jones2 days ago

Expects To Play Thursday
David Savard2 days ago

A Game-Time Call Thursday
Kirby Dach2 days ago

Set To Miss At Least One Week
Adam Boqvist2 days ago

Not Expected To Play Thursday
Matt Grzelcyk2 days ago

Sits Out Thursday's Game
Michael Hutchinson2 days ago

Tending Twine Against Boston Thursday
Stuart Skinner2 days ago

Gets The Nod For Edmonton Thursday
Petr Mrazek2 days ago

Between The Pipes Versus Blues
Dre Miller2 days ago

Kendre Miller Ahead Of Schedule
Buffalo Bills2 days ago

Bills Re-Sign Jordan Phillips
Las Vegas Raiders2 days ago

Alex Bars Returns To Raiders On One-Year Deal
Dallas Cowboys2 days ago

Johnathan Hankins Re-Signs With Cowboys
NFL2 days ago

Wanya Morris Getting Close To 100%
Brendon Todd3 days ago

Has Success At TPC San Antonio
Ben Martin3 days ago

Has Value At TPC San Antonio
Nick Taylor3 days ago

A Boom-Or-Bust Option At Valero
Taylor Pendrith3 days ago

A Sleeper Option At TPC San Antonio
Chris Kirk3 days ago

A Good Option At The Valero Texas Open
Matt Kuchar3 days ago

Loves Playing TPC San Antonio
Will Gordon3 days ago

Offers A Wild-Card Option At Valero
Cam Davis3 days ago

Can Keep His Current Form At TPC San Antonio
Mark Hubbard3 days ago

A Low-Risk Value Option At Valero
Tyler Duncan3 days ago

Start Tyler Duncan At TPC San Antonio
Emiliano Grillo3 days ago

Not Recommended At Valero
Patrick Rodgers3 days ago

Don't Give Patrick Rodgers A Shot At Valero
Adam Schenk3 days ago

Wants To Keep Momentum Rolling At Valero
Ryan Moore3 days ago

Cannot Get Past The Cut Lately
Stephan Jaeger4 days ago

Could Warm Things Up At Valero
Si Woo Kim4 days ago

A Possible Contender At Valero
Taylor Montgomery4 days ago

Attempting To Find Weekend Consistency
Corey Conners4 days ago

Trying To Recreate A Little Magic
Thomas Detry4 days ago

Continues To Impress In Rookie Season
Aaron Rai4 days ago

Brings Positive Momentum To Valero Texas Open
Akshay Bhatia4 days ago

Looks To Stay Hot In Texas
Todd Gilliland4 days ago

Impressive At COTA
Ty Gibbs4 days ago

Finds His Footing At COTA
Chris Buescher4 days ago

Continues To Shine On Road Courses
NASCAR4 days ago

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Finishes Seventh
Austin Cindric4 days ago

Has A Solid Day
Marlon Vera5 days ago

Has Four-Fight Winning Streak Snapped
Cory Sandhagen5 days ago

Dominates Striking Department
Yana Santos5 days ago

Dominated In Decision Loss
Holly Holm5 days ago

Dominates In Co-Main Event
Austin Lingo5 days ago

Suffers Submission Loss
Nate Landwehr5 days ago

Shines With Second-Round Submission Win
Andrea Lee5 days ago

Suffers Defeat In Close Matchup Saturday
Maycee Barber5 days ago

Takes Close Matchup On Saturday
Chidi Njokuani5 days ago

Takes Close Loss In Split-Decision Showing
Albert Duraev5 days ago

Holds Off Opponent In Tight Split Decision
William Byron5 days ago

Rounds Out Top Five At COTA
Ross Chastain5 days ago

Caught Up To Fourth At COTA On Sunday
Alex Bowman5 days ago

Brings Home Third Place Finish At COTA
Kyle Busch5 days ago

Scrambles Up To Second At Austin
Tyler Reddick5 days ago

Dominates And Wins At COTA
RANKINGS
C
1B
2B
3B
SS
OF
SP
RP

RANKINGS

QB
RB
WR
TE
K
DEF