Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:


Already have an account? Log in here.


Forgot Password


The Waiver Wire Watch List: Week 13

So we're two and a half months into the season, and a lot of pictures are becoming more clear. Some players have been lost to injury time, plenty are underperforming, and there are of course new faces rising. No matter the situation, it could be time for a roster refresh--but not just the hum-drum obvious waiver wire adds.

Throughout the season, you want to get the jump on your competition and sniff out the breakout players before they break out. That's what this list is all about--using some in-depth research and advanced analytics to find the players who aren't quite there yet but are on their way. Some of these may suit your needs for an immediate pick-up depending on your team's situation.

This is not necessarily a list of players you should add right away at the start of week 13 - it is a list of players to keep a very close eye on in most leagues as we further into June, and to consider picking up in deeper formats. In some cases, we will even caution you not to pick up a widely-added player, and steer you away from the fool's gold. Use it to build your own watch list.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off. Exclusive access to our Draft Kit, premium rankings, projections, player outlooks, top prospects, dynasty rankings, 15 in-season lineup tools, and over 200 days of expert DFS research. Sign Up Now!


Pitchers to Watch in 12+ Team Leagues

Homer Bailey (SP, KC)

Homer Bailey is probably still the Homer Bailey you know and loathe, but there are some signs that he's not going to be completely useless for the rest of the summer. If that's not a ringing endorsement, I'm not sure what is. Bailey IS currently riding a streak of three quality starts in a row, and he actually has a 1.37 ERA in that time frame.

A hot streak is all well and good, but in 2019 the 33-year-old has actually shown some fairly consistent improvement when compared to recent years. His 20.7 strikeout percentage is the highest mark since 2013 (technically it was better across the six starts he made in 2016), although he hasn't been healthy for a majority of the last five years. He's worth rostering in deep leagues, but you need to be very careful about when you roll him out.

Elieser Hernandez (SP, MIA)

The Marlins have nothing to lose at this point, and they're using the rest of the season to see what kind of assets they've got in the organization. Elieser Hernandez was underwhelming in 65.2 innings last year (starting and in relief) but he's flashed some fantasy potential in his first few outings in 2019.

Through 13.2 innings he's got a solid 13:2 strikeout to walk ratio, and he's allowed just one home run. A decidedly small sample size, but Hernandez showed off his strikeout stuff at each stop in the minors. So far this year he's only faced the Giants and the shockingly subpar Cardinals lineup, so wait and see a couple more starts before you consider actually adding him.

Michael Pineda (SP, MIN)

Pineda has missed large chunks of the last decade with various injuries, including the entire 2018 season. He's managed to hold down a rotation spot with the upstart Twins, and besides a few blemishes he's been mostly usable for fantasy purposes. His season-long numbers are underwhelming, because while four of his last six outings have been quality starts, he's given up three earned runs or more in all but four starts this year.

Understand what you're getting with Pineda. He won't help your ratios, he's currently posting the second-lowest strikeout percentage of his career, and he's still falling victim to the long ball as often as he has for most of his career--which is often. But he truly does give his team (and your fantasy team) a chance to win just about every time out.


Batters to Watch in 12+ Team Leagues

Ryan McMahon (1B/2B, COL)

McMahon has thrived as a cog in the suddenly red-hot Rockies lineup, and with Garrett Hampson back down in the minors it looks like McMahon might have some staying power. As of right now McMahon is riding a seven-game hitting streak, and he's driven in 10 runs in his five games.

As long as McMahon has a regular spot in the Rockies lineup, he'll have fantasy value. The numbers are clear about the value of Coors Field, and McMahon has always had a plus hit tool to begin with. You're perfectly justified to try and get in on his current hot streak, but I'm not quite at the point where I find him a must-own in anything but the deepest leagues.

Jason Kipnis (2B, CLE)

Remember when Jason Kipnis was a fantasy stud? Yeah, me either, it's been a while. In the back half of his career, Kipnis has sacrificed contact for power, but the power isn't anywhere near enough to make up for his horrendous batting average. Through three months of baseball, those trends have been holding steady, and Kipnis was heading towards another underwhelming season.

Kipnis missed a couple games last week with hip tightness, and since then he's actually picked it up significantly at the plate. He's hitting .421 over his last five games with three homers and 10 RBI, and he's pretty much locked-in as an everyday player for the Tribe. See if this is more than just a momentary surge for the veteran.

Francisco Mejia (C, SD)

Francisco Mejia has been one of the most touted prospects in baseball for a couple of years, but he's simply never panned out in the big leagues. He's just 23, and has flashed his superb hitting abilities throughout the minor leagues, so it's very much about patience at this point.

There isn't anything I can point to in his major league stat sheet that indicates he's about to explode onto the scene, but this is the watch list, not the waiver wire list. He hit a homer in his first game back in the bigs this week, and with his kind of talent he's worth keeping a close eye on in the immediate.


Recapping The Waiver Wire Watch List

In the section, I will review the progress and current outlook of players that I wrote about in previous articles in this series.


Shaun Anderson (SP, SF) - Still Watching: Hit around a bit by the powerful Dodgers, but still fell just one out short of a quality start.

Steven Brault (SP, PIT) - Still Watching: Shut out (impressive) the Miami Marlins (less impressive) for six innings last time out. Pitching well enough to stay in the rotation, but his future is still cloudy.

Tommy Milone (SP/RP, SEA) - Still Watching: Working incredibly well behind an opener, and looks like he will continue to do so.

Cal Quantrill (SP, SD) - Still Watching: No start this past week. Keep an eye on him.

Framber Valdez (SP/RP, HOU) - Still Watching: Frambermania is NOT running wild, brother. Got touched up in Yankee Stadium this week, but hey, isn't everyone?

Brett Anderson (SP, OAK) - Add Now: Four quality starts in his last five outings. He's nothing special and never will be, but he's got fantasy appeal as a back-of-the-rotation guy.

Andrew Cashner (SP, BAL) - Add Now: Back-to-back great outings against the Astros and A's, and he's pretty much settled in as that guy who has a decent shot at a QS, but is prone to the occasional blow-up.


Todd Frazier (3B, NYM) - Still Watching: Has been raking for a couple weeks, but I'm not sure I buy this offensive turnaround just yet.

Kevin Newman (SS, PIT) - Add Now: Riding a nine-game hitting streak and has his average up to .316 as of this writing. You aren't going to do much better with your MI spot or as a backup.

Kevin Pillar (OF, SF) - Still Watching: His overall numbers are still weighed down by an unsightly BABIP, and he may be normalizing at long last.

David Bote (2B, 3B) - Still Watching: When he's in the lineup, he hits. Problem is, he's not always in the lineup.

Jarrod Dyson (OF, ARI) - Still Watching: With David Peralta back Dyson is merely a part-time player and doesn't merit much consideration unless you're looking for steals in a roto league.

More Waiver Wire Pickups and Streamers

More Recent Articles


ADP Cost Analysis – Robbie Ray vs Trevor Bauer

With fantasy baseball draft season in full swing, those of us who partake in this joyous game are now looking through as much draft data as possible in a bid to find players we love who have lower average draft positions (ADP) than we believe they should. All this to eke out as much draft... Read More

2020 Keeper Value Rankings - Second Base

Keeper Value Rankings are intended for Keeper Leagues in which a fantasy owner must forfeit a designated draft pick in order to keep a player into the upcoming season. These rankings are based on Keeper "Values". In the marketing world, Value can be defined as "the extent to which a good or service (player) is... Read More

2020 Fantasy Baseball Sleepers – C.J. Cron

As another fantasy baseball season approaches, we once again have the chance to discuss C.J. Cron as a fantasy sleeper. Cron will be playing for his third team in three seasons. It is tough to wrap one's head around the idea that a player of Cron's talent continues to be undervalued by professional and fantasy... Read More

2020 Starting Pitcher Rankings - H2H Points Leagues

Points leagues may seem like a slight variation from traditional 5x5 category scoring leagues but you must approach draft day with a very different strategy if you wish to truly compete. All preseason long, RotoBaller has you covered with the latest rankings for all fantasy baseball league types. Here we present our points league rankings... Read More

Second-Half Improvements: Buy Into These Starting Pitchers

The second half of the season is always put under a microscope for starting pitchers. Fantasy players have a love for the second half of the season, as the belief is that pitchers who take a step forward could carry over that success the next season and perhaps even build upon it. But, as we... Read More

How to Attack RP in SV+HLD Leagues

No position has seen as much evolution in recent seasons as the relief pitcher. Gone are the days where starters were expected to go seven innings as most teams have embraced the idea of "super-bullpening" and try to fit as many pitchers that can throw 95+ MPH into their bullpen as they can. Many fantasy... Read More

Using Sabermetrics for Fantasy Baseball: Pitch Info

One of the most fundamental questions in fantasy sports is if a player's current performance is sustainable. More than any other sport, baseball has a slew of statistical measures that can be dissected in numerous ways to analyze player performance. Pitch Info is a publicly-available pitch tracking system that provides a lot of different data to... Read More

2020 Fantasy Baseball Staff Rankings

Below you will find RotoBaller's 2020 fantasy baseball rankings, tiers and auction dollar values for the 2020 MLB season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Mixed, Head-to-Head, Points, AL/NL Only, Two-Catcher Top 2020 prospects, Dynasty leagues, Keeper values Export the rankings easily... Read More

Mock Draft Review: Best Late-Round Targets

Last week, some members of the RotoBaller staff completed a 12-team mock draft for standard 5x5 format. After the draft, we each broke down our strategy and some of our favorite picks, which can be found here. However, I want to take a closer look at one portion of the draft in particular. Since we know that... Read More

Faster and Furious: Pitchers with Rising Velocity/Performance

Welcome fantasy baseball players! I’m sure that you, like me, are anxiously counting down the days until your drafts and Opening Day. While the fantasy season may not start for several weeks, there are plenty of things we can do to start preparing for a successful season. One of those things is to take a good... Read More

James Karinchak Is A Relief Pitcher To Know in 2020

One of the lesser-known players that intrigues me for the 2020 MLB season is Indians relief pitcher James Karinchak. The former Bryant Bulldog was drafted by Cleveland in the ninth round in the 2017 draft and went on to have one of the most outrageous statistical seasons in minor league baseball history. As someone who... Read More

2020 Relief Pitcher Rankings - H2H Points Leagues

Often regarded as an inferior fantasy baseball format, points leagues offer a different style of boasting over your friends or coworkers similar to that of fantasy football. These setups are typically head-to-head formats for a one-week stretch where the player with the most points gets a win. Easy right? While it's true that roster construction... Read More

2019 Barrel Breakouts: Who's For Real and Who's Next?

As pitchers and catchers get even closer to reporting and most fantasy leagues prepare for their drafts, everybody is looking for a leg up on the competition - a way to get in on a guy before everybody else does. In this article, we're going to look for a way to identify hitters who improved... Read More

Using Sabermetrics for Fantasy Baseball: Pitcher BABIP

While FIP is a useful tool to predict a pitcher's future ERA performance, fantasy owners should remember that ERA, not FIP, is what really matters in most formats. This means that we are interested in the "luck" that separates the two statistics. While some of this luck is unpredictable, we can and should predict some... Read More

Second Year Player Preview: Fantasy Baseball 2020 ADP Analysis

Host Anthony Aniano of RotoBaller Radio discuss the 2020 fantasy baseball season and keeps you updated with all the latest news and analysis Be sure to tune into RotoBaller Radio on SiriusXM (channel Sirius 210, XM 87) - every weekday morning between 6-7 AM ET, every weekday afternoon from 1-2 PM ET, Saturday nights from 9-11 PM ET... Read More