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Starting Pitcher Waiver Wire Pickups for Week 15

The All-Star Break is nearly upon us.

Being right in the thick of things as we are, this is possibly the most challenging time of year to be seeking help on the waiver wire. Fortunately, you've come to the right place for assistance.

A reminder before we begin: This column focuses on players who are below 50% owned in Yahoo leagues, and standard 5x5 scoring. Your mileage may vary, in terms of availability or league settings. Using that cutoff point for ownership rate, however, these are your starting pitcher waiver wire targets and adds for Week 15 of the 2019 fantasy baseball season.

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Pickups for Shallow Leagues

Anibal Sanchez (SP, WAS) — 46% Owned

Sanchez struggled immensely to start the season. Prior to a mid-May stint on the injured list, he was 0-6 with ugly ratios (5.10 ERA, 1.68 WHIP). It was fair to wonder if his 2018 renaissance had been a mirage. Since returning, however, he's 5-0 with a 2.18 ERA and 0.97 WHIP. The key for the 35-year-old has been getting back to what made him successful last season - his cutter. A soft schedule has also helped, but you can only play the teams they put in front of you and Sanchez has gotten the job done for the resurgent Nationals.

Andrew Heaney (SP, LAA) —42% Owned

Heaney took a tough-luck loss against the Astros on Saturday despite pitching fairly well. It was undoubtedly a difficult outing for him, as his first game since the shocking death of teammate and best friend Tyler Skaggs. The former first-round pick missed the first two months of the season due to injury, which has been a recurring theme in his career. And while his 5.18 ERA is lousy, Heaney does have 49 strikeouts in 42 innings along with a palatable 1.25 WHIP. If he can do a bit better job keeping the ball on the ground going forward, there's some sneaky second-half value here.

Tanner Roark (SP, CIN) — 31% Owned

Roark's most recent outing, a no-decision against the Brewers, was just the fourth time in his last 15 starts that he allowed more than two runs. The 32-year-old has posted solid ratios (3.52 ERA, 1.29 WHIP) and the best strikeout rate of his career, thanks in part to increased reliance on his slider. Keep an eye on the home runs (eight of the 10 he's given up on the year have come in his last six starts), but Roark has been quietly useful all season.


Pickups for Deeper Leagues

Michael Pineda (SP, MIN) — 25% Owned

Pineda is striking out hitters at a respectable rate, posting an exceptional walk rate, and giving up too many homers and hard-hit balls. In other words, it's a typical season for the 30-year-old. He has turned in quality starts in eight of his last 10 outings (and fell one out shy of notching a ninth), and encouragingly has allowed just two home runs in his last 46 innings of work.

Dinelson Lamet (SP, SD) — 17% Owned

Lamet's first start since 2017 went reasonably well. Though he lost, giving up three runs in five innings, there were reasons for optimism - it was a tough draw against the Dodgers, and he struck out seven while only allowing five batters to reach base. His slider looked great and his fastball velocity was consistent with where it had been prior to his Tommy John surgery.

Danny Salazar (SP, CLE) — 16% Owned

Like the other two guys in this section, Salazar missed the entire 2018 season. He hasn't pitched yet in 2019 either, but fantasy owners haven't stopped dreaming on his upside. The 29-year-old has a career 27.8 K%, and in his first rehab appearance last week retired all five hitters he faced via the strikeout. Cleveland president Chris Antonetti told reporters he was hitting 95-96 on the gun, which bodes well for his health. It's not clear when he'll return or whether he'll immediately join the rotation versus assuming a bullpen role, but there are few names as intriguing as Salazar to be found on the waiver wire in most leagues.


For Your Radar

Jaime Barria (SP, LAA) — 1% Owned

He's currently in the minor leagues, but Barria was demoted after his start on Wednesday merely due to the approaching All-Star Break. His recent performance all but guarantees he will be back up with the big club shortly. In his last three outings, the 22-year-old has struck out 20 batters in 15 innings and posted excellent ratios (2.40 ERA, 0.94 WHIP). Barria was a useful arm as a rookie last season (10 wins, 3.41 ERA in 129 innings) and should be a regular part of the Angels' rotation over the remainder of the year.


More Waiver Wire Pickups and Streamers

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