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Vince Velasquez (SP/RP, PHI) - Week 21 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 14+ Team Leagues

OWNED IN: 21% of leagues

ANALYSIS: It hasn't turned into the push for the postseason that the Philadelphia Phillies were probably hoping for, but Vince Velasquez has been back as a full fledged member of the rotation, and he has been rather effective of late despite the up-and-down (though heavily characteristic) flow of his year. In 28.0 IP across his last five starts, Velasquez has netted a rock-solid 3.21 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, with 26 strikeouts, and only three home runs allowed. It is common knowledge that the 27-year-old arm has his bugaboos and is liable for the occasional mediocre (or horrific) start, but improvements to his pitching approach and arsenal should inspire confidence moving into the final month and a half of the regular season.

Even though Velasquez's strikeout rate has plummeted to an unusually low 15.7% for August, he has maintained a low walk rate at 7.1% while actually allowing a season-best HR/9 figure of 1.04. This may be a little weird because, even though he lowered his hard contact rate by 6.6% this month, he only lowered it to 45.3% while still forcing just 9.4% soft contact. His HR/FB ratio still remains at a mere 7.7% for August, which could be in part due to a season-low pull rate of 28.3% or the fact that he has managed to toss all of his key pitches (fastball and slider, most notably) at a higher frequency and a higher average velocity per pitch. Whether it's his typical strikeout potential or his recent ability to limit power, Vince Velasquez is a start that could go for big rewards when deployed in the right situation.

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