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Starting Pitcher Waiver Wire Pickups for Fantasy Baseball - Week 11

Logan Allen - Fantasy Baseball Rankings, Draft Sleepers, MLB Prospects

I missed last week, but I'm back! It's been tough sledding for many SPs, but there have been plenty of helpful young names coming up and pitching pretty well at the highest level. A lot of these names are now unavailable to us, but there are still some league's clearly lagging behind the curve and that might give you a chance to really bolster your rotation on the fly.

As the year goes, we always tend to find fewer and fewer interesting names in this post, and I think that trend is going to start really soon if it hasn't already. We'll do our best here to locate some arms that can help your fantasy rotation, so let's hop in to it.

Here are your starting pitcher fantasy baseball waiver wire pickups recommendations for Week 11 of the fantasy baseball season (June 4 - June 11).

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!


Waiver Wire Pickups for Shallow Leagues

Pitcher pickup recommendations for leagues of any size


Edward Cabrera, Miami Marlins (49% Rostered)

Cabrera is hovering right around the 50% ownership mark, and he's certainly not available in many leagues deeper than 12-teamers, but he's under the threshold at this moment so I want to mention him.

We have long known that Cabrera has elite stuff. He currently sits with the eighth-best strikeout rate among pitchers with at least seven starts.

Pitcher K%
Spencer Strider 41.7%
Shohei Ohtani 33.8%
Matt Strahm 33.1%
Hunter Greene 33.1%
Kevin Gausman 32.9%
Mitch Keller 30.4%
Clayton Kershaw 30.0%
Edward Cabrera 29.9%
MacKenzie Gore 29.8%
Kodai Senga 29.8%

The problem with the young righty has always been the walk. He currently sports a horrific 14.2% BB% - the fourth-worst in the league.

The plus is that Cabrera has walked one or fewer hitters in three of his last four outings while maintaining an elite strikeout rate. His 22.7% K-BB% since May began is 16th-best in the league, quite a good sign.

I have no doubt that there will be some more of these disastrous outings where he walks a handful, survives only three innings, and murders your team's WHIP for that week - but I am just as confident that he will balance that out with some absolute gems. Cabrera should be rostered in 12-team leagues or deeper.

Logan Allen, Cleveland Guardians (37% Rostered)

Allen's ownership seems to have topped out around 40%, which is pretty surprising given the 2.72 ERA he has posted in the Majors so far. His strikeout rate has fallen off significantly from the 34% he posted in the minors this year, but it has stayed above the big league average at 25%, and it comes with a strong 6.4% BB%.

He also has plenty fo deception in his delivery, which helps him outperform some of the advanced metrics. I don't think Allen is an ace or anything like that, and he's not as good as the 2.72 ERA shows, but he should certainly be owned in more leagues than this!

Louie Varland, Minnesota Twins (25% Rostered)

Louie V is going through a brutal patch of his schedule right now, recently having faced the Angels and now being scheduled to take on the Blue Jays and Rays for his next two. Because of that, maybe it's best to leave him on the wire for another week.

However, it's not like he hasn't handled tough matchups well so far this year. He has a 3.51 ERA with a 1.15 WHIP on the year with a 23.2% K% and a 4.8% BB%. Those are strong numbers to put together.

Most impressively, he has strong SwStr% marks on four different pitches, and he splits his pitch distributing pretty evenly between all four.

The four-seamer has been excellent, and the cutter is a great mask pitch off of it. The slider is worst SwStr% relative to pitch type, but it's a good weapon to have behind the two fastball variations.

Again, I understand the hesitation not wanting to throw him out there against the Blue Jays and Rays, but I do think this guy is a top-40 or so arm in fantasy, and he's not really someone I want to miss the boat on moving forward.


Waiver Wire Pickups for Deeper Leagues

Pitcher pickup recommendations for deeper leagues

Brayan Bello, Boston Red Sox (29% Rostered)

We had five pretty solid starts in a row from Bello there before a dud last week.

What has me still holding on is the above-average 12.8% SwStr% that goes with his elite 60% GB%. If you can manage an above-average strikeout rate while keeping balls out of the air at that elite rate, it's hard to not have box score success as well.

An interesting change has happened for Bello in these last two starts as he's really reduced the sinker usage in favor of the four-seamer.

Prior to these last two starts, he posted a 23.8% K% with a 9.2% BB% and a 62.4% GB%. Over these last two starts, it's a 21.3% K% and a 4.3% BB% with a 54.3% GB%. Fewer walks, but a lower K% and predictably fewer ground-balls (the sinker is the real ground-ball pitch). If I were making the decisions (I'm not for good reason), I'd probably have him go back to the sinker, or at least split the usage of them more evenly.

Regardless, the arsenal is deep and all of these pitches are pretty strong in their own right. I think there are a lot of ways for Bello to figure this out and become a very good pitcher, and it might just happen this year.

Reese Olson, Detroit Tigers (5% Rostered)

The Tigers young righty debuted on Friday night and pitched quite well, delivering six innings of two-hit, two-run ball with six strikeouts. The most interesting thing about Olson is that he came out confidently with his slider, throwing it a start-high 30 times and earning a sweet 20% SwStr% on the pitch.

The Stuff+ marks check out on the pitch, as it graded quite well in that debut start.

The sinker and four-seamer seem to be average at best, and they didn't perform well in his debut, rarely going for a strike and not earning a single whiff on 41 pitches. However, you don't need an overwhelming fastball if you have an elite slider like he does, so any kind of small improvements there might be enough to warrant him being owned in plenty of fantasy leagues. Right now, I'm saving him for deep leagues - but we'll keep a close eye on him in his next few starts.

JP Sears, Oakland Athletics (7% Rostered)

This isn't a streamers piece, but it is worth noting that Sears gets a two-start week this week against the Pirates and Brewers, so that is reason enough to pick him up.

But, in my view, he has proven to be good enough for a long-term add given his decent 22.2% K% and elite 4.5% BB% on the year. Prior to these last two starts against the Braves and Mariners, he had posted a 25.1% K%, so we aren't too far removed from him being an above-average strikeout pitcher.

The best part about the profile is his 13.3% SwStr%, and that suggests to me that the 22% strikeout rate is an underperformance and should be on the rise, and I think it starts this week in these soft matchups with the Pirates and Brewers.

Michael Soroka, Atlanta Braves (45% Rostered)

We have seen very, very little of Soroka in the Majors over the last few years, but he made his long-awaited return to the Braves rotation last week and pitched decently well in his return, giving up four runs on five hits in six innings.

The ceiling with Soroka is pretty low given that he's never been a strikeout pitcher and we shouldn't expect him to be this year either (just a 21% K% this year and that includes eight starts as he was working his way back into shape in the minors). But we did see Soroka as a guy that could get outs at a really nice clip, consistently delivering soft contact and keeping the ball on the ground.

I personally think Soroka will be a bit disappointing overall this year, but he's not a guy likely to eviscerate your fantasy team - and he should earn some wins and quality starts along the way.

Bryan Woo, Seattle Mariners (5% Rostered)

We don't know much about Woo, as he came up to the Majors straight from the AA level to pitch on Saturday. That start aside, we know that Woo has some definite upside in the long-term as he's managed a 34.3% K% and a 7.0% BB% in 9 minor league starts this year. That 27.3% K-BB% ranks seventh-best in the upper levels of the minor leagues.

Going from any level of the minor leagues to the Major Leagues is quite a jump, and we should expect nothing close to a 27% K-BB% again as he'll suddenly be facing the best hitters of his lifetime, but the groundwork is good to have here. We have seen some plenty of rookie arms have success in the Majors already this year, and there's no reason that can't happen for Woo. Don't expect the world, but he should be added in deep leagues.

Jack Flaherty, St. Louis Cardinals (40% Rostered)

We have a long way to go before feeling confident in Flaherty again, so I'll be brief here. It's been another bad year for the once highly-touted prospect, with his poor 11.8% SwStr% and 12.6% BB%. However, over his last four starts he's lowered the walk rate to 8.0% and raised the strikeout rate to 25%.

The whiffs still haven't come, and the pitch mix is far from impressive - but we've seen good things from him in the past, so maybe it's coming back a little bit now.

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