Streaming Wars: Waiver Wire Targets for May 2

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Welcome back to Streaming Wars, your one-stop shop for streaming and waiver wire advice. Use this column to address your problem categories.

Below are your pitcher and hitter streaming targets for Tuesday, May 2nd.

Let's get to it.

Editor's Note: Our friends at Fantrax have even more fantasy baseball advice columns and videos to help improve your teams. Be sure to also check them out!

 

Agenda

  1. When My Opponents Know Too Much
  2. Today's Weather and Updates
  3. Tomorrow's Picks

 

1. When My Opponents Know Too Much

As a fantasy baseball analyst, my personal opinions are often a matter of public record. For example, everybody knows I'm not a big Amir Garrett believer even though I own him on multiple teams. I didn't believe in Rich Hill at first either, and I had shares of him too. Part of diversifying my rosters is acquiring players with mysteriously good results.

Since I don't believe in Garrett, I'm rather keen to trade him for something I do like. I tried to deal for Scott Schebler yesterday. I received the following in response.

This isn't bad. If I didn't think you'll eventually drop Garrett if you don't find a taker, I might would take it. I can see how putting your thoughts about players into publication can be a detriment to competitive advantage.

This is from a new owner who doesn't know my playing style. He wasn't around for when I refused to trade an unkeepable Aroldis Chapman off a last place roster because my leaguemates were low balling me. He doesn't realize I'll stubbornly hold Garrett until he proves he's real or fake. I responded by re-offering the trade with a note about my stubbornosity.

My leaguemates can exploit my tendencies in another way. By refusing to make a fair trade for Garrett, they know I'll continue to double down on him until I'm either proven right or he lights on fire. One of my roster spots has been committed.

 

2. Today's Weather and Updates

New York and Chicago have a low risk of storms tonight. Monitor accordingly. Detroit could be in for a soaking tomorrow. At least I think that's what the cloud with the blue streaks means.

 

3. Tomorrow's Picks - Tuesday, May 2nd

Pitchers to Use

Sonny Gray is back, but he was stashed in 65 percent of leagues. I wouldn't start him versus the Twins. He's a stash option who could rapidly gain trade value.

Alex Wood is far and away the best streaming option on the docket. The southpaw already handled the Giants last week with a one hit, one walk, five strikeout shutout over six innings. His velocity is up two mph, and he's recording more grounders than ever. The latter part is luck - he won't maintain an 11 percent line drive rate. Wood does have a long history of limiting hard contact. The only issue is that he's not fully stretched out. It's too bad he'll probably be bumped back to the bullpen when Rich Hill returns - unless they decide Kenta Maeda needs a stint on the shelf.

At some point in the near future, Scott Feldman will be a regular fixture in the "to exploit" section. For now, he's keeping hitters off balance enough to consider using. He'll face a mediocre Pirates offense. More importantly, Tyler Glasnow will probably spot the Reds an early lead. This is a great situation to pile up steals. It's too bad Jose Peraza's owners aren't fed up yet.

Alex Cobb is visiting the National League. I fear Giancarlo and Friends will drop the hammer on Cobb. He tends to work low in the zone, and the Marlins mostly feast on low pitches. However, Cobb probably has the best quality start odds of anybody on the waiver wire. Just remember that three runs and nine base runners over six innings aren't good fantasy stats.

Other Targets: R.A. Dickey

 

Pitchers to Exploit

Glasnow walks everybody. Both he and catcher Francisco Cervelli are extremely stolen base prone. And we all know how much the Reds love to run. It's been a long time since I've seen such a highly touted prospect who can't pretend to throw strikes. It's a matter of time until he's put in a Chris Devenski role.

Mat Latos's 3.27 ERA belies a 4.09 K/9 and 5.73 BB/9. Pitchers who walk more than they strike out are not major leaguers. The Yankees shall benefit accordingly.

Chances are you don't know much about Alec Asher. The soft tossing righty was cut loose by the Phillies despite solid results over 27.2 innings in 2016. He's a pitch-to-contact command and control guy. This profile usually takes a couple years to click - and often doesn't at all. The upside is something like Kyle Hendricks. The downside includes many dozens of nobodies. Asher doesn't appear to have the elite command necessary to make his middling stuff work. There's a reason the lowly Phillies said buhbye. The Red Sox should feast.

Trevor Cahill and Tyler Chatwood face each other at Petco Park. At least it's not Coors? Chatwood could be a sneaky play for a quality start. The Padres lineup is rather feeble even if most of the individuals have interesting traits. Cahill has a weird 11.25 K/9 with a big swinging strike rate and 60 percent ground balls. He's worth monitoring too, although I expect instant regression.

Other Targets: Mike Fiers, Wily Peralta, Taijuan Walker

 

Homers on the Wire

When healthy, Jed Lowrie is a legitimately good hitter. He's healthy! Nothing about his .292/.354/.438 triple slash is fluky. His plate discipline matches his career norms, and he's even popped a couple home runs. While he isn't a multi-homer threat, he could pick up a couple RBI while batting second or fifth in the Athletics lineup. Yonder Alonso and Matt Joyce are better bets for home runs. They're all very widely available.

Max Kepler, Joe Mauer, and Kennys Vargas will probably bat second, fourth, and fifth versus Sonny Gray. The former A's ace experienced a spectacular decline in 2016. Whether he recover his past tendency to induce soft contact remains an open question. At the very least, he'll probably be shaking off some rust.

I made a mistake not recommending Scott Schebler earlier. His newfound penchant for hard fly balls makes him a true 30 home run threat, especially with Great American Ballpark providing an assist. I'm less enthused about his matchup against Glasnow.

In other must-add player news, Michael Conforto has finally crept over 50 percent owned. He's still available in 48 percent of leagues despite batting leadoff with a 1.055 OPS.

Other Targets: Ryan Schimpf, Yangervis Solarte, Hunter Renfroe, Randal Grichuk, Neil Walker, David Peralta

 

Steals on the Wire

Ben Gamel isn't especially speedy, but his stolen base total will probably exceed his home runs. With the Mariners drowning in injuries and underperformance, Gamel is batting second versus right-handed pitching. The Mariners face Matt Shoemaker and his occasionally hanging splitters.

Delino DeShields has quietly ousted Shin-Soo Choo as the Rangers leadoff man. The speedster combines minimal power with way too many strikeouts, making him an unusual fit atop a lineup. There is optimism that the 24-year-old could be poised for a breakout. He'll face Fiers.

Freddy Galvis and Aaron Altherr could swipe a base versus Jon Lester. Because, you know.

If he reaches base, Jose Reyes will probably run against R.A. Dickey. Because, knuckleballs.

Other Targets: Manuel Margot, Kolten Wong, Rajai Davis, Brett Gardner

 

Skill Positions

Austin Hedges could take advantage of Chatwood's sinker. Hedges has transformed himself into a low ball masher.

 

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