Streaming Wars: Waiver Wire Targets for July 31

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Welcome to Streaming Wars, your one-stop shop for streaming the waiver wire. Use this column to improve upon your neediest categories.

Below are your pitcher and hitter streaming targets for Monday, July 31st.

Let's get to it.

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Agenda

  1. The Deadline Cometh
  2. Today's Weather and Updates
  3. Tomorrow's Picks

 

1. The Deadline Cometh

Oh hi there! My thanks to Mr. Bishop for filling in while I was on vacation. If you happened to prefer his analysis, he'll be back over the next weekend while I attend a wedding in the NC mountains.

Now, back to business. With the trade deadline looming, player values are going to get jostled around in the next day. To this point, the big swaps happened over a week ago. Based on the rumors, a few pitchers like Yu Darvish and Sonny Gray could be on the move in the next 30 hours. Keep an eye on what the Rangers and Athletics receive in return - they're the guys who might help you to fantasy victory. Neither club has a meaningful pitcher waiting to join the rotation.

 

2. Today's Weather and Updates

Sunday and Monday action should go uninterrupted by weather events. It's around this time of year when it starts to feel foolish to have an entire section dedicated to weather. Then, September finally rolls around and we'll have more to discuss.

 

3. Tomorrow's Picks - Monday, July 31

Pitchers to Use

There are only two startable pitchers on the waiver wire, and they're both just under our 50 percent ownership cutoff. Charlie Morton has been claimed in 48 percent of leagues. That's a mistake though - in this pitching environment, he should be rostered in nearly all formats. He combines strikeout stuff, a decent walk rate, and better than average run prevention. What's not to like? Since returning from the disabled list in early July, he's picked up right where he left off. Morton has a tricky matchup against the Rays, but it's one I trust he can survive.

At 46 percent owned, your best alternative is Mike Foltynewicz. In many ways, he's similar to Morton - strikeouts, acceptable walk rate, and decent run prevention. However, he's slightly outperforming his peripherals - enough that he probably should be rostered in under 50 percent of leagues. Folty has pitched well recently, snapping off a string of quality starts. His most recent meltdown was way back on June 12. The Phillies offense ranks bottom five in the league. However, over the last 30 days, Philadelphia is performed as a top 10 lineup. The only major change is more playing time for Nick Williams. This is still the same unit that struggled from April through June.

Other Targets: no

 

Pitchers to Exploit

I wanted to recommend Nick Pivetta because he checks several of the boxes of a fantasy relevant pitcher. With 9.32 K/9 and 3.94 BB/9, he should be a prime streamer. Alas, he's drowning under the burden of 1.91 HR/9. When hitters square up his fastball, it's hammered. He's also had trouble with his curve ball. Pivetta could be instantly relevant out of the bullpen where his fastball and slider might play up. The Phillies need him to start for the foreseeable future.

Jose Urena has posted a 4.04 ERA despite a lack of swing-and-miss stuff. ERA estimators are not a fan of his work - 5.19 FIP, 5.49 xFIP, and 5.15 SIERA to list a few. It's pretty clear his success can be pinned upon a .249 BABIP, but none of his peripherals suggest he's a low-BABIP pitcher. Regression could come all at once versus the Nationals.

Other Targets: Ubaldo Jimenez, Marco Estrada, James Shields, Matt Cain

 

Homers on the Wire

Our old friend Yonder Alonso has slumped his way down to 50 percent owned. He hasn't homered since mid-July. It's my theory that he's playing through a minor injury. However, slumps happen to everybody. A couple cold weeks are no reason to panic. He remains a potent home run threat. Consider Jed Lowrie and Marcus Semien too. The A's face Cain.

The Rays have installed Lucas Duda as their cleanup hitter, although I assume his role will change once Logan Morrison returns from a heel injury. Morrison is on the cusp of needing a retroactive stint on the disabled list. Duda should get a couple more days with the cleanup role.

Other Targets: Danny Valencia, Mike Napoli, Shin-Soo Choo, Carlos Gomez, Adam Lind, Trey Mancini, Jorge Bonifacio, Whit Merrifield, Brandon Moss, Aaron Altherr, Nick Williams, Tommy Joseph, Matt Adams

 

Steals on the Wire

Mallex Smith's 12 percent ownership remains one of the great crimes of the 2017 season. While Smith is limited to only a couple steady categories of production (29 runs and 15 steals in 165 plate appearances), those steals are sufficient to win championships. A matchup against Morton isn't ideal, but the Astros catchers are among the worst in the league at gunning down runners.

Other Targets: Denard Span, Delino DeShields, Wilmer Difo

 

Skill Positions

The Braves generally alternate between Tyler Flowers and Kurt Suzuki. They're both having absolutely superb seasons - probably because they're well-rested. Assuming Suzuki starts on Sunday, that means it's a Flowers day on Monday.

 

More Lineups Advice

 

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