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Digging Deeper: Week 9 NL Waiver Wire Targets


Welcome back to our Week 9 edition of Digging Deeper, our weekly column where we will focus on deep league waiver wire options. My counterpart Tom Bellucco will be handling the American League while I focus on the National League.

For those that have played in limited size leagues, you are well aware that at-bats and innings are the precious commodities. You are not going to find a top-100 player on the wire at any point this season. In fact, top-150 is a stretch. And as the year goes on, the options are going to get uglier and uglier.

Players in shallow standard formats who are here because they love fantasy baseball (thanks for reading!) will find some of these players apprehensive. But at the end of the day at-bats and innings are key, and that's where our attention will be.

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Digging Deeper: Week 9 Pickups - NL

Hope everyone enjoyed their Memorial Day weekend. Memorial Day is known as the tipping point for fantasy, in which hot starts begin to turn into breakthrough seasons and distinguished players who haven't put it together get sent to the waiver wire.

 

Arodys Vizcaino (SP, SD) - 12% owned in Y! Leagues

There is no standout pitcher to begin this week, so let's shift to the closer carousal. As the month turns to June the hot stove should begin to warm up, and closers/standout relievers are worth a pretty penny. The Braves are not contending this year and Jim Johnson (1 year/$2.5M) is going to be a prime candidate given his closer and set-up experience. This will open the door for last year's closer, Arodys Vizcaino, to take his role back. Vizcaino has been excellent in the set-up role, compiling a 2.11 ERA and 24/7 K/BB in 21.1 innings. He's a two-pitch reliever, featuring a fastball that sits at 98 mph and a heavy curveball. He's an excellent add for save-needy owners.

Trevor Williams (SP, PIT) - 0% owned in Y! Leagues

Williams is one of the pitchers where his stuff doesn't equal his stats. Williams has a 5.20 ERA and 1.32 WHIP while his soft ball contact is up and his line drive rate is down. He also has been doing well at limiting base runners since stepping into a starting role. In his past four starts (21.2 IP) Williams has a 3.32 ERA and 13/3 K/BB. He's worth a start his next time out versus the struggling Mets.

Randall Delgado (SP/RP, ARI) - 1% owned in Y! Leagues

This is a one-time buy, but it's worth investing. Delgado started in place of Taijuan Walker on Memorial Day and was fantastic, pitching 5.2 innings and limited the Pirates to one run. He struck out eight and walked none. Delgado has been excellent out of the Diamondbacks bullpen, posting a 35/6 K/BB through 36 innings. Keep in mind Delgado was originally a Braves starter when he was a central piece to the Justin Upton trade. Delgado gets the Marlins on Saturday and will be worth holding onto should Walker experience another setback.

Allen Cordoba (OF, SD) - 1% owned in Y! Leagues

Yes, the Padres are a wasteland for offense. BUT -- everyone likes at-bats, and that's what we get from Cordoba. Cordoba has settled into the leadoff role with Manuel Margot (calf) on the disabled list and been a hitting machine. In his past 43 at-bats, he is hitting .349. The issue -- he only has three runs, one RBI, and a steal. He's purely an average play, but at-bats are scarce in NL-leagues so give him a shot.

Chase Utley (2B/3B, LAD) - 2% owned in Y! Leagues

What year is it? Utley, 38, looks like the MVP-version recently, providing a spark for the NL-West leading Dodgers. In his past five games, Utley is hitting 7-for-20 (.350) with three home runs, six RBI, and a steal for good measure. Dave Roberts has gotten creative with his lineup, inserting Utley, Chris Taylor, and Logan Forsythe at various positions to keep their bats in the lineup. Whatever he's doing, it's working. Utley is a good short-term add while he stays hot.

Chase d'Arnaud (2B/SS/3B/OF, SD) - 0% owned in Y! Leagues

Another Padre? It may look unappealing but NL-only leagues take what we can get, and it looks like d'Arnaud just got the shortstop job in San Diego. d'Arnaud, 30, has been a swiss-army bench weapon at each MLB stop but given Erick Aybar's struggles (.196/.273/.311) he may have a full-time role. d'Arnaud isn't a MLB-bat, but he does have speed including two steals this past week.  He's now started four of the past five games and should see playing time going forward. If you need speed, this is a good option.

 

Previously Discussed Players

Tim Adleman (SP, CIN)

Aaron Altherr (OF, PHI)

Christian Arroyo (SS/3B, SFG)

Jacob Barnes (RP, MIL)

Cody Bellinger (1B/OF, LAD)

Joaquin Benoit (RP, PHI)

Ty Blach (SP, SFG)

Eddie Butler (SP, CHC)

Gregor Blanco (OF, ARI)

Archie Bradley (SP/RP, ARI)

Jarred Cosart (SP, SD)

Jorge De La Rosa (SP/RP, ARI)

Wilmer Flores (1B/2B/3B, NYM)

Adam Frazier (2B/3B/SS/OF, PIT)

Amir Garrett (SP, CIN)

Zack Godley (SP, ARI)

Austin Hedges (C, SD)

Gorkys Hernandez (OF, SFG)

Kike Hernandez (SS/OF, LAD)

John Jaso (1B/OF, PIT)

Corey Kneubel (RP, MIL)

Dinelson Lamet (SP, SD)

Michael Lorenzen (SP/RP, CIN)

Jose Martinez (1B/OF , STL)

Tommy Pham (OF, STL)

Felipe Rivero (RP, PIT)

Miguel Rojas (2B/SS, MIA)

Joe Ross (SP, WAS)

Rio Ruiz (3B, ATL)

Antonio Senzatela (SP, COL)

Eric Sogard (2B/3B, MIL)

Cory Spangenberg (2B/3B/OF, SD)

Ross Stripling (SP, LAD)

Michael Taylor (OF, WAS)

Alex Wood (SP, LA)

 

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