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Outfield Waiver Wire Pickups for Week 7

Hunter Dozier fantasy baseball rankings draft sleepers waiver wire pickups

We have completed another week of MLB action, and we have once again been littered with injuries. Both good and bad things arise from injuries. Let's start with the bad, which means losing a player, sometimes a key player from your roster. The good is a chance to add a new player, and certain players suddenly finding new playing time. For instance, we were all excited for Alex Kirilloff (wrist), but now he is hurt, and we can get excited for the Twins' other stud outfield prospect in Trevor Larnach. Some outfielders recommended in recent weeks that are still producing, yet not nearly owned enough like Adolis Garcia, so pick him up NOW!!! Regardless, there is always some churning and burning that can be done, and this weekly article will help with your weekly FAAB process.

Some outfielders would be better suited to stream for a hot bat. Others need to be replaced just because they are no longer on the field (IL). That is a situation that affects many owners, and there is nothing you can do except find a suitable replacement as quickly as possible or risk losing valuable counting stats. In this article, I’ll discuss waiver wire targets for the outfield in Week 7. This week we cover a few guys on a little hot streak while a couple of other players have enticing matchups.

Even in the first few weeks, ownership can change quickly. Be quick to check your leagues for their availability. Key points - this list will focus on players who are owned in less than 50% of Yahoo! leagues. When you want to chat it up regarding outfielders, prospects, or dynasty leagues, message me directly on Twitter @bdentrek.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers received 13 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association including Baseball Writer of the Year, Football Writers of the Year, Golf Writer of the Year and many more! Be sure to follow their analysis, rankings and advice all year long, and win big with RotoBaller! Read More!

 

Hunter Dozier, Kansas City Royals

44% Rostered

Dozier got off to a horrible start to the 2021 season and was likely dropped in many leagues. If that is the case, or he wasn't drafted and is sitting on the waiver wire, then it's time to grab Dozier. Over the last two weeks, he has hit .222. Sure not great, but the power has arrived. Dozier has nine XBH (four home runs), an ISO of .422, and a wRC+ of 147. Dozier is crushing baseballs, and his quality of contact is following along with a 13.8% barrel rate and a 51.7% hard-hit rate.

If you want more than a two-week sample, then let's check out Dozier's xStats. On the season, he is hitting just .163 but has a .252 xBA. He has a near 100 point difference in slugging percentage with a .398 SLG and a .493 xSLG. Lastly, Dozier has a wOBA of .273 and an xwOBA of .336. All the xStats point to some bad luck to start the season. His xwOBAcon is the best of his career at .452.

To rehash, Dozier has been swinging it much better over the last two weeks. His xStats show some positive regression should be coming his way, which somewhat correlates with his recent success. Dozier also has career highs in barrel rate, hard-hit rate, and xwOBAcon. Dozier also brings really nice multi-position eligibility with his 1B/3B/OF options in Yahoo! and most other leagues. Go and add Dozier while you can, as a big summer of power and speed is ahead.

 

Nick Senzel, Cincinnati Reds

26% Rostered

Senzel still isn't playing every day, but more and more injuries lead to more consistent playing time potential. With Jonathan India and Joey Votto (hand) missing time, plus the return of Shogo Akiyama, Senzel has seen more time at 2B while still playing in the outfield. Just gaining 2B eligibility alone will elevate Senzel's value in a big way for the rest of the season. Also, with the injuries and the mixing and matching of the Reds' lineups, Senzel has hit leadoff in three of his last six games. This adds more to his fantasy possibilities.

Over the last six games, Senzel is hitting .365 with a .136 ISO and an impressive 15.4% walk rate leading to a .462 OBP. Senzel has one home run and one steal over this stretch as well. He has even been caught stealing twice, so they are letting him run, which is great. On the season, Senzel has career-bests in barrel rate (5.7%) and hard-hit rate (38.6%). He also has a strikeout rate of only 12.8%.

Senzel is a top prospect and is finally getting the regular playing time we've been waiting for. He needs to stay healthy, and he will be able to run with the job. Keep him atop the batting order and playing 2B, and the value skyrockets. Grab Senzel everywhere.

Aaron Hicks, New York Yankees

24% Rostered

It has been quite a rocky start to the season for Hicks as he is only hitting .196 with a .288 wOBA and an 86 wRC+. Similar to Senzel, Hicks is an xStats positive regression candidate. He has an xBA of .250, an xSLG of .452, and an xwOBA of .342. Hicks also has career-bests in barrel rate (10.5%) and fly-ball rate (28.9%).

Over the last seven games, Hicks has really started to heat up. He has hit safely in five of the last seven games, hitting .391 with a .217 ISO and 216 wRC+. Pair that with a 14.3% walk rate, 15.8% barrel rate, and 47.4% hard-hit rate, and Hicks could really be busting out of his slump to start the season. The Yankees moved him down to sixth in the order, and things are working out for Hicks. He hits in one of the most potent lineups in baseball. If you're looking for some serious offensive production, grab Hicks and ride the hot bat from the Yankees.

 

Willie Calhoun, Texas Rangers

16% Rostered

Calhoun missed the start of the season with an injury/illness, but since joining the Rangers on April 17, he has flat out been hitting. Calhoun has hit safely in 15 of 17 games this season, good for a .338 average. He even has three home runs to go with a .154 ISO and 158 wRC+. Calhoun can be found regularly near the top of the Rangers lineup, and his 13.9% strikeout rate and .403 OBP should keep Calhoun near the top of the order.

The Rangers lineup has been sneaky productive when it comes to fantasy, and Calhoun should be a big part of that while he leads off. If looking for batting average help and/or runs, then Calhoun is your guy. He should be owned in nearly all 12-team leagues or deeper, so jump on the Willie Calhoun train.

 

Mike Tauchman / Austin Slater, San Francisco Giants

Both 5% Rostered

The Giants' outfield combo can be a headache when it comes to playing time, but both bring some nice assets to your fantasy rosters. Since Tauchman joined the Giants after being traded from the Yankees, he has hit safely in seven of nine games and has even hit leadoff in four of his last five starts. Tauchman will be on the strong side of the platoon and will see regular playing time, for the most part, supplying some power and speed.

On the other hand, Slater usually starts against LHP, but does see the occasional start versus RHP as the Giants are always platooning, resting players, and playing matchups. Slater has only hit for a .230 average with a 33.3% strikeout rate but brings power and some very nice speed into your fantasy lineups.

I mentioned both Giants outfielders as both have fantasy value in different formats. Tauchman brings more weekly league and deeper league appeal being on the strong side of the platoon. Meanwhile, Slater brings value in daily leagues as he can be started when the Giants face an LHP or have a DH in their lineup. Tauchman can be used in deeper weekly leagues; I would definitely like Slater in your daily leagues. When Slater gets the start, he can be quite a fantasy producer; it just depends when he starts.

 

Josh Naylor, Cleveland Indians

3% Rostered

Naylor had an awesome postseason for Cleveland last year and jumped onto the fantasy radar for the 2021 season. Those who took chances in deeper leagues to start the season were not too happy. The good news is that he's been coming around. Naylor has really picked things up and should be back on deeper league radars, especially with the lack of outfield depth on the waiver wire. Over the last 11 games, Naylor is hitting .325 with six XBH (two home runs) and even has a stolen base.

Naylor has put the ball in play a lot while only striking out 15.9% of the time and, when putting it in play, is showing power with a .250 ISO and 163 wRC+. Over the last 11 games, Naylor is barreling the ball 15.2% of the time with a 48.5% hard-hit rate and that goes in line with the uptick in overall offensive production. If you need an outfielder in deeper leagues, then give Naylor a chance; otherwise, put him on your watch list as a big summer could be in store.

 

Kevin Pillar, New York Mets

3% Rostered

Pillar could be a quick add and a quick drop, but it's well worth riding the hot bat while you can these days. Pillar was a spot starter or pinch-hitter for the start of the season, but over the last seven games, he has become a regular in the Mets' outfield. The Mets have been hitting Pillar fifth or sixth, and he has been thriving. Over the last seven games, he is hitting .345 with a .276 ISO and 172 wRC+. Pillar has two home runs and has even thrown in a stolen base over this seven-game stretch.

How long will Pillar's fantasy relevance last? Who knows. What we do know is that it's time to grab him in deeper leagues while he is getting the starts and hitting. We have seen throughout Pillar's career that he has stretches of fantasy relevance; this could be another stretch. Also, keep an eye on the Mets' transactions as there are rumblings of calling up one of their top prospects in Khalil Lee, which could slow down Pillar's playing time.



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