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Pablo Lopez (SP, MIA) - Waiver Wire Pickups Week 7

BALLER MOVE: Add in 12+ Team Leagues

OWNED IN: 17% of Leagues

ANALYSIS: Lopez officially lost his prospect status last season when he threw 58.2 innings for the Marlins, and he entered this season as a relative unknown, hidden in the shadows of Caleb Smith's breakout. Despite Lopez's low ownership rate, he owns a 3.80 xFIP and a 3.75 SIERA to go with his 23.7% strikeout rate and 6.2% walk rate, those numbers combine to give him a 29th best 17.5% K-BB%, just behind Zach Wheeler and ahead of Domingo German. Those numbers suggest that hisĀ 5.93 ERA is inflated by bad-luck and small sample size.

Lopez features three above-average pitches and above-average command. He primarily relies on his four-seam fastball that sits at 94 MPH and touches 96, and uses a 93 MPH sinker and 85 MPH changeup to generate both whiffs and groundballs. In particular, Lopez's sinker has been especially effective for him, and when he's throwing it more often he sees better results. When he throws it less often, such as his recent blowup against the Mets, the results are worse. Lopez is still only 23 years old and has only seen 160 innings above A-ball, so the results will be somewhat erratic and sometimes frustrating, like the 10-run performance against the Mets when the Marlins left him out there to grind it out. Lopez doesn't project as a pitcher of that caliber, but he will struggle from time to time, so owners will have to monitor his starts to shield him from unfriendly conditions.

Given the Miami offense, Lopez isn't likely to generate a high number of wins, but the park factor and his raw talent should make him serviceable in most leagues and a must-start at home, where he owns a 2.76 ERA and a filthy 26.6 K-BB%. Look for him to be a useful contributor in ratio stats and strikeouts for the rest of the season.

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