Digging Deeper: Week 17 Waiver Wire Targets

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As July comes to a close, trade talks turn to trade actions, and fantasy baseball owners enter now-or-never mode. Unless you are truly out of contention in a redraft league, the waiver wire is still the best place to look for upside. Sure, trades provide access to known commodities, but free agents can provide similar upside at a much cheaper price. While the pickings look slim, I guarantee there's a few names out there that still have an impact to make before October.

I've able to maintain my lead in the RotoBaller Experts League thus far, and I feel pretty good about my positioning for the rest of the season. However, I still am making more moves than anyone else in our league. Whether it's streaming pitchers, attacking juicy hitter matchups, or just looking for someone who may explode in the next few weeks, the waivers are still my best bet for reinforcements to help keep my squad atop the standings.

Because I'll be covering more players, my analysis will be shorter and to the point. Feel free to find me on Twitter @BellRoto and ask me to explain more personally. I'll be happy to do so, and I will even contort the waiver pick-up to your own team and situation. Best of luck to you all, and enjoy the final days of July.

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Digging Deeper: Week 17 Picks

Francisco Cervelli (C, PIT) - 17% owned in Yahoo! Leagues

This pickup is only for those of you in two-catcher leagues. If your team is looking for a batting average spark without a dip in run production, Francisco Cervelli might be a nice upgrade at your second backstop position. He's started to heat up following an injury stint, and he'll provide a little, sneaky power while spraying line drives around the park. I can't promise he won't get hurt again before October, but I can promise he'll play hard and try his best to get on base every single time he steps to the plate, especially with Pittsburgh only 2.5 games behind first place in the division.

Cesar Hernandez (2B, PHI) - 16% owned in Yahoo! Leagues

Middle infield is another spot where teams in a fantasy playoff race may need some reinforcements. Cesar Hernandez has eight hits and six runs scored in his past five starts. He also has a little bit of home run and steal potential in the leadoff spot of the Phillies' lineup. It's good to see the multi-category hitter picking up where he left off at the beginning of the season. The RBI contirbutions may not be there, but you can get a little bit of everything else from this underowned second baseman.

Amed Rosario (SS, NYM) - 14% owned in Yahoo! Leagues

Everyone and their mothers expected this top prospect to be up and playing in the Mets' infield by now, but somehow he still has not made the jump to the majors. However, with the trade deadline looming, you have to imagine the club gives in and brings up the future of their offense by the start of August. It's anyone's guess how Amed Rosario will contribute for the final two months of the season, but the upside and hype is certainly there. I know he's in my NA spot incase we see something special right away.

Luis Castillo (SP, CIN) - 24% owned in Yahoo! Leagues

There's not a whole lot standing out to me in the pitching pool, but Luis Castillo does seem underowned at 24% on Yahoo!. Sure, the ERA hasn't quite come around yet, but we have to take a look at the strikeouts and the incredibly tough stretch of opponents. For starters, Castillo's impressive fastball and seemingly untouchable breaking stuff has yielded 43 strikeouts in 35 innings this season. And while his 3.86 ERA doesn't scream "stud", take into account these matchups: Washington Nationals (twice), Arizona Diamondbacks (twice), Colorado Rockies (in Coors Field), Milwaukee Brewers. The next start in Yankee Stadium doesn't look great either, but this guy has been more than impressive when looking beyond the surface numbers. Castillo is a must-add and a must-start pitcher in my eyes, especially if you value strikeouts.

Start Streaming Starting Pitchers

If you need saves, this heading could also read "pick up speculative, potential closers", but that's harder to do and only helps one category. If you need help in strikeouts, wins, or even peripherals (ERA/WHIP) at this point, you should be streaming pitchers in good matchups. Matchups that I've been looking for lately include San Francisco, Chicago White Sox, San Diego, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Oakland, and even Detroit if you're desperate. Make the moves now or you'll regret it in a month.

 

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