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NL-Only and AL-Only Waiver Wire for Week 7

It's pretty tough out there on the waiver wire these days, as we now move on to Week 7 of the season. Offense is down pretty much everywhere in baseball this year, as there are so many hitters struggling to get going even as the calendar moves on to mid-May.

With that being said, there are still some potentially interesting names out there on waivers that can help out. They may be short-term options or players who get stashed until there's a good opportunity to start them, but these players can help managers weather the storm until some more attractive options start to pop up later on in the season.

Each week, I'll look at five players who are under 15% rostered in Yahoo! leagues and who can be considered as options to add in deep-league formats, such as 15-teamers or AL or NL-only leagues. I'll also include a recommendation for what to do with each player on your roster. Now, without further ado, let's get into it.

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Harrison Bader - OF, Cardinals

5% rostered
Recommended move: Add for the long haul 

Bader only recently came off the injured list and made his 2021 debut, but he has done exceptionally well to the tune of a .250/.324/.563 slash line. He also has two stolen bases already. He's probably not going to continue hitting the ball with such authority just based on his track record, but he should be considered just for the stolen base upside alone, as he should be a lock to steal double-digit bags and potentially push 20 or more if given the playing time.

It's also worth rostering him though to see if he can hold some of these other offensive gains too. His strikeout rate has pushed 30% for his career, and so far it's down to just 13.5%, due to making a lot more contact and chasing a lot less. He won't light up a Statcast leaderboard, but if those plate discipline improvements stick, or if he can at least keep that strikeout rate low enough, he can be a good all-around player for fantasy purposes, especially with what should be a good amount of stolen bases.

Bader doesn't have to worry about playing time right now, either. The Cardinals' other outfield options behind him are not likely to take his spot anytime soon, so the team should continue to run with Bader for the foreseeable future.


Trevor Larnach - OF, Twins

4% rostered
Recommended move: Add for a few weeks 

With the minor league seasons now underway, we are now fortunately at the time where prospects will start to be called up. For the Twins though, they are promoting Larnach up more so out of necessity, with the team underperforming and two outfielders already on the injured list.

However, Larnach isn't just some random minor leaguer. He is a legitimate prospect, who has been ranked in the top-100 for a few years now. The most glowing thing about his prospect profile is his hitting ability, which can definitely come in handy in these offense-deficient times. He also features a good batting eye, which should lead to plenty of walks, further making him a hot target in OBP leagues. He's been mashing to start the year in Triple-A, with a ridiculous .462 isolated power mark and two home runs in just three games. That definitely wouldn't last for long in the minors, and definitely won't in the Majors, but it is good to see him get off to a hot start.

He's started just two games at the Major League level, and is likely to need some time to adjust and get his feet wet before going out there and live up to his prospect profile, but he should be in the lineup pretty much everyday for the Twins. The results may not be there to start, but this is a good player to stash if you can afford to wait a little bit for the results to start coming.


Eric Lauer - SP, Brewers

3% rostered
Recommended move: Add for a few weeks

Shifting now to some pitchers who are worthy of picking up, it is a bit surprising to see Lauer rostered at such a low rate. While his 1.38 ERA is not likely to stick, there are things to like about what he's doing this season that should make him a viable fantasy option.

He's the type of pitcher who seems to get a little underrated in fantasy circles, as he isn't a flamethrower and won't put up ridiculous amount of strikeouts. He's more of a command-over-stuff type of pitcher, and that has been on full display so far this season with a minuscule 3.8% walk rate, which corresponds to a much higher zone rate for him this season (56.5%), which has led to a higher called strike rate of 16.8%. He's also made some changes to his pitch mix, emphasizing his cutter and changeup a lot more, with the cutter in particular being a good whiff pitch. Those changes have his CSW rate (called strikes + whiffs) at a career-best 27.2%. There is a lot to like here, but the downside comes with the fact that he's given up a bit too many home runs this season, at a rate of 2.08 per nine. There's potential for his starts to go wrong quickly because of that, and fantasy managers may have to deal with some of those up and down results, but on the whole, Lauer looks to be a fine starting pitcher option in deeper leagues.


Dean Kremer - SP, Orioles

1% rostered
Recommended move: Add for a few weeks

One look at Kremer's 6.23 ERA will pretty much sum up why he's rostered at just 1% currently. It's been ugly at times for him this season. He got roughed up twice against the Yankees but fared much better against lesser offenses in Seattle and Texas, as well as surviving against a potent Red Sox offense.

Kremer does have good skills, as evidenced by his much nicer looking 4.36 SIERA. His biggest issue to this point has been an elevated home run rate (not unlike the aforementioned Lauer), with a rate of 2.08 per nine. The thing is though, that Kremer never had a home run issue in the minor leagues, nor in his brief 2020 cameo in the Majors, so that elevated rate could be expected to regress and come back down to earth in time.

For fantasy purposes, Kremer is more of a pitcher that you would start in favorable matchups. It's not a coincidence that he had his two best starts against weaker offenses, so he's definitely more of an add-and-stash option right now, especially considering his next start is against the Yankees, who have already hit him hard twice this season. However, that means that fewer managers are looking to pick him up right now, so if you can afford a stash option, Kremer could be a good option to hold and wait for a good matchup.


Harold Ramirez - OF, Cleveland

1% rostered
Recommended move: Add for a few weeks 

Ramirez recently got called up to Cleveland after many of their other outfield options have continued to scuffle at the plate, and for the moment, he's been in the lineup pretty much everyday in center field.

Ramirez has been a useful option in the past, most notably in 2019 with the Marlins when he got off to a hot start in the first half of the season. In deep formats like this, players playing everyday are more of a priority than in some shallower formats, and Ramirez offers that right now. Even if he hits like his 2019 slash line of .276/.312/.416 with double-digit home runs, that would still be a nice option in these type of formats, especially considering that he is so freely available. He's had just 20 plate appearances so far, so it's hard to judge his performance right now, but he can be a league-average type of hitter that doesn't kill you in any one category. Obviously, it would be better to keep him around on your bench as he starts out this season, but he could be a good plug-and-play option when needed. It won't be glamorous, but it could still be useful.


Reviewing Last Week's Picks

At the end of each week's post, I'll review what happened with last week's picks and offer a suggestion for them in the future.

Corey Dickerson (OF, MIA) 

Last week: 8% rostered. This week: 12% rostered. 

Dickerson has seen his roster rate start to climb as he continues to hit well, with a 129 wRC+ in the last week and an overall 139 mark for the season. The extra-base hits aren't coming like we would want them to, with just one home run on the season, but it's hard to be disappointed by his performance thus far. If he's still out there, pick him up, and hold him if you already have him.

Current recommendation: Hold. 

Andrelton Simmons (SS, MIN) 

Last week: 8% rostered. This week: 6% rostered. 

Simmons got off to a hot start this season, but has cooled off considerably since. He was just 2-for-20 last week and isn't giving managers much of a reason to roster him right now. He could still be a good option for some cheap counting stats later down the road, but this is an easy drop.

Current recommendation: Drop. 

Luis Urias (2B/SS/3B, MIL) 

Last week: 7% rostered. This week: 7% rostered. 

Roster rate holds steady for Urias this week, and while he had a dreadful week (3-for-22), he still has an impressive 13.4% walk rate that will keep him in the lineup as he works through this slump. His batting average is going to be ugly, but as a multi-eligible bench option in deep leagues like this, he still has value. I would hold him.

Current recommendation: Hold.

Mike Tauchman (OF, SF) 

Last week: 4% rostered. This week: 4% rostered. 

Tauchman is the type of player who will see his fantasy relevance come and go with his performance. If he's hitting well, he'll be picked up and started, but as soon as he starts to slump, he'll be dropped quickly. The past week had more managers likely in the "drop" category as he went just 5-for-27 after getting off to such a hot start with his new team. What's really hurting him is his 30% strikeout rate and 50% groundball rate, as it's hard to have much success with that profile. He probably should be better, but also maybe not. It's a bit tough, but I would lean towards drop here. Keep an eye on him in case he gets hot again.

Current recommendation: Drop. 

Seth Brown (OF, OAK) 

Last week: 1% rostered. This week: 2% rostered. 

Brown is still hitting well with a 146 wRC+ this season and a whopping 267 wRC+ in the last week, but that's in just two starts, as he is still firmly locked into a platoon. It is still extremely encouraging to see him hitting so well, which should make him fantasy relevant despite the lack of playing time. He's even been moved up to second in the lineup when he's starting as well, which shows the team has a good amount of faith in him. He is still definitely worthy of a pickup in deep leagues, but he clearly has more value in daily leagues. Still, hold on to him.

Current recommendation: Hold. 

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