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Welcome back to Streaming Wars, your one-stop shop for streaming the waiver wire all season long. This article, now in its second year, runs seven days a week. Even at this relatively early juncture, there's plenty of value in streaming.

For those who are newcomers to this feature - use this column on a daily basis to improve upon your neediest categories, and target players who may be available on your waiver wire.

Below are your pitcher and hitter streaming targets for Thursday, May 17. Let's get to it.

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Agenda

  1. Injury Prone
  2. Today's Weather and Updates
  3. Tomorrow's Picks

 

1. Injury Prone

A.J. Pollock could miss the rest of the season's first half after breaking his thumb on a diving play in the field - to add insult to injury, said play resulted in an inside-the-park home run despite his efforts. This will mark the third consecutive season that Pollock misses significant time due to injury. Much like with Giancarlo Stanton, there have been some freak occurrences in there, inspiring some debate on whether he's injury prone or just unlucky. Whatever the case, it's a major blow to the Diamondbacks and to fantasy owners who were reaping the benefits of Pollock's sizzling start.

 

2. Today's Weather and Updates - Wednesday, May 16

Storms in the Northeast pose a serious threat to Blue Jays-Mets and Yankees-Nationals today. There's also a chance that rain impacts Cubs-Braves. Every other game should proceed without incident.

 

3. Streamer Picks - Thursday, May 17

Pitchers to Use

Tyler Skaggs may or may not be available in your league (he's currently just above 50 percent owned), but he's the clear top streaming option if so. Skaggs has allowed more than two earned runs just once in his eight starts, pitching to a 3.07 ERA and 1.20 WHIP with over a strikeout per inning. He'll face the Rays, who rank toward the bottom of the league in runs scored.

Much more likely to be available is Vince Velasquez, though he carries more risk. The volatile VV is coming off a 12-strikeout performance against the Giants. He did allow two homers in that start, bringing his total to eight allowed in just 41 innings. The Cardinals' lineup has been surprisingly lousy thus far, though, and Busch Stadium suppresses the long ball.

Other Targets: Chad Bettis, Marco Gonzales

 

Pitchers to Exploit

That Aaron Sanchez remains so widely owned despite a 3.4 K-BB% is a cloud at which I refuse to quit yelling. In 16 starts since his breakout performance in 2016, Sanchez has produced a 4.15 ERA, 1.58 WHIP, 6.12 K/9, and 4.92 BB/9. Your optimism is misplaced, my friends.

James Shields somehow still has a spot in an MLB rotation despite the fact that he is terrible and has been for a while. Stack Rangers hitters with confidence.

Other Targets: Dan Straily, Alex Cobb, Mike Soroka

 

Homers on the Wire

C.J. Cron has seen his ownership spike in recent days, but he's still under 50 percent despite hitting .317 with eight homers and 20 RBI over the past month. He's already more than halfway to his career high in HR - 16, his total in each of the last three seasons. Amazing what actually getting to play every day can do for a guy.

Other Targets: Matt Chapman, Stephen Piscotty, Justin Bour, Mark Trumbo, Teoscar Hernandez, Franchy Cordero, Matt Kemp

 

Steals on the Wire

It's surprising to see Franchy Cordero available in so many leagues, given that he's produced a 30 HR/25 SB pace to this point. Pirates catcher Francisco Cervelli has been better this season, but over the years he's routinely been gashed by the running game. Cordero should get a green light if and when he reaches base.

Other Targets: Leury Garcia, Travis JankowskiMallex Smith, JaCoby JonesManuel Margot

 

Skill Positions

John Hicks remains installed at first base while Miguel Cabrera recovers from a hamstring injury. He's hitting .304/.349/.532 with four homers and is still under 20 percent owned.

Arodys Vizcaino blew a save on Tuesday. Braves manager Brian Snitker has indicated a willingness to use other relievers in save situation, and A.J. Minter has locked down two games in the last three weeks. Meanwhile, if you can stomach the middling ratios and lack of strikeouts, Brad Ziegler has converted his last five opportunities.

 

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