Waiver Wire Pickups of the Week (Week of June 27, 2022): Best Players Available Under 50%, 40%, 30%, 20%, and 10% on Yahoo

by Mickey Bell

*Stats and Roster % as of the morning of June 26

GRADUATED

  • Batters
    • Oneil Cruz, SS, PIT (36% to 77%)
  • Starters
    • Josiah Gray, SP, WAS (48% to 55%)
    • George Kirby, SP, SEA (47% to 53%)

50% OR UNDER

Jhoan Duran, SP/RP, MIN (44%: no change)

He got the save today over Pagan who struggled a bit this week. Pagan came in with two outs in the seventh, pitched 1.1 innings, and got the hold. Duran is rosterable even without the saves. The 103 MPH flamethrower now has a 2.18 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, and 12.55 K/9. It’s not just his fastball; his curveball has a 0.297 OPS against and a 46.4% K rate. All four of his pitches have a SwStr% of 17.1% or better.

Honorable Mentions: 

  • Batters
    • Christian Walker, 1B, ARI (39% to 48%)
    • Wilmer Flores, 1B/2B/3B, SFG (47%: no change): Boring accumulator, but he’s not getting platooned and is batting 2nd through 4th in the lineup. 
    • Rowdy Tellez, 1B, MIL (50% to 46%): Last week’s ‘50% OR UNDER’ Pickup of the Week had two homers today (Sunday) and three on the week. He has 95th percentile Max EV (Exit Velo) and a solid Barrel rate. 
    • Dylan Carlson, OF, STL (45%: returning): Since the beginning of May, Carlson has an 0.843 OPS with 4 HR, 2 SB, and a 0.287 BA. 
  • Starters
    • Jon Gray, SP, TEX (41% to 46%)
  • Relievers
    • Emilio Pagan, RP, MIN (49%: returning)
    • Seranthony Dominguez, RP, PHI (30% to 45%)
    • Tanner Rainey, RP, WAS (40% to 41%)

40% OR UNDER

Connor Joe, 1B/OF, COL (39%: returning)

1B and OF dominate this group. 1B has been considered a shallow position in fantasy over the past few years, but seeing all these names in my article might make you reevaluate that.

Anyway, this is a bit of a short-term pickup recommendation as Joe gets six games at Coors this week. Joe is also better against lefties and should face about four this week against the Dodgers and Diamondbacks (Thank you, Fangraphs Probables Grid). On the year, he has 4 SB, 5 HR, and a 0.278 BA. He bats leadoff and should provide runs.

Honorable Mentions: 

  • Batters
    • Josh Naylor, 1B/OF, CLE (35% to 39%)
    • Nathaniel Lowe, 1B, TEX (36% to 39%)
    • Anthony Santander, OF, BAL (39%: returning)
    • Garrett Cooper, 1B/OF, MIA (34% to 37%)
    • Brandon Belt, 1B/OF, SFG (37% to 34%)
  • Starters
    • Roansy Contreras, SP, PIT (33% to 38%)
    • Marco Gonzales, SP, SEA (22% to 33%)
  • Relievers
    • Paul Sewald, RP, SEA (36% to 39%)
    • Tanner Scott, RP, MIA (32% to 38%)

30% OR UNDER

Alek Thomas, OF, ARI (20% to 24%)

Usually, I don’t pick the same player as pickup of the week two weeks in a row but Thomas really sticks out in this group. The rookie has 6 HR and 4 SB through 43 MLB games. That’s a 162 game pace of 23 HR and 15 SB. If he keeps up his pace, he would finish this season with around 19 HR and 12 SB. His biggest current flaw is hitting the ball into the ground too much with a 59.5% GB rate and 2.2 LA (launch angle).

Honorable Mentions: 

  • Batters
    • Ramon Laureano, OF, OAK (31% to 28%)
    • Gabriel Moreno, C, TOR (27% to 26%): More of a hit tool player than a power prospect, but he’s a catcher and the current 11th and 12th ranked catchers, Gary Sanchez and Sean Murphy, each have 8 HR and averages around 0.220. Moreno could be more valuable than that. He’s at least worth rostering until Danny Jansen comes back.
    • Jesus Aguilar, 1B, MIA (25%: returning)
    • Jorge Mateo, 2B/SS/OF, BAL (25% to 22%): 19 SB on the year. Might not be a fit for your team, but he deserves to be rostered by those desperate for steals.
  • Starters
    • Dakota Hudson, SP, STL (30% to 23%)
  • Relievers
    • Colin Poche, RP, TBR (17% to 25%)

20% OR UNDER

Isaac Paredes, 2B/3B, TBR (17%: new)

The post-hype sleeper was on fire this week with 5 HR including three in one game. Just 23 years old, he struggled in his majors appearances in previous years but had solid minors stats. However, when the Rays trade for someone, he’s always worth keeping on your radar. Paredes now has 10 HR in just 34 MLB games and 14 between 59 games in AAA and the MLB. 

He’s outperformed playing time competitors like Taylor Walls and Vidal Brujan, and he has started some games at 1B lately, potentially adding eligibility there down the road. Today, he reached in all four plate appearances, walking once and getting three hits. Paredes started the day with a 24.4% HR/FB rate which would be sixth in the majors if he qualified. While that number might represent HR luck, his 0.203 BABIP is sure to rise and balance things out a bit. After today, he has a 0.255/0.315/0.612 triple slash line.

Honorable Mentions: 

  • Batters
    • Eddie Rosario, OF, ATL (19%: returning): He is starting a Triple-A rehab assignment. Rosario was abysmal to start the year, but has more often than not been a top 100 fantasy contributor since 2017.
    • Luis Garcia, 2B/SS, WAS (12% to 17%)
    • Jarren Duran, OF, BOS (9% to 16%): Duran has led off in 10 of the Red Sox’ last 11 games with Kike Hernandez on the IL. Even when Hernandez comes back, Duran should keep his playing time (and leadoff spot) as none of the Red Sox outfielders–including Alex Verdugo, Jackie Bradley, and Franchy Cordero–has a wRC+ above 90. Duran has 22 HR and 27 steals in his last 103 games at AAA. Through 13 games in the majors, he has a 160 wRC+ and 4 SB. Unfortunately, he’s about to miss the Toronto series as he’s unvaccinated.
    • Andrew McCutchen, OF, MIL (12% to 15%)
    • Jack Suwinski, OF, PIT (3% to 14%): 12 HR in 53 games.
    • Lane Thomas, OF, WAS (12%: new): Over the last 30 days, Thomas is the 81st overall player and 47th best hitter in 5×5 roto.
  • Starters
    • Grant Ashcraft, SP, CIN (20%: returning): After eight dominant innings in San Francisco, he should be streamable this week against the Cubs at Wrigley.
    • Nick Lodolo, SP, CIN (14% to 15%): Lodolo pitched four scoreless innings in a rehab start on Thursday. The starting pitcher is arguably a bigger prospect than Hunter Greene. 
  • Relievers
    • Lou Trivino, RP, OAK (15%: returning): Dany Jimenez went to the IL and Trivino got two saves this week. He has a 1.97 WHIP on the year and had a 1.91 WHIP in 5.2 IP over the last week though. 

10% OR UNDER

Evan Longoria, 3B, SFG (5%: returning)

Let’s try this again: I got excited about Longoria a month ago when he had 5 HR in five games in late May. Since then, it’s been a little stop-start with nagging injuries but he homered in back-to-back games on Friday and Saturday and has still mustered a 0.774 OPS in June and a 0.786 OPS on the year. Longoria has a 44.7% HardHit% this year after an elite 54.5% rate last year. He plays every day when healthy and bats in the middle of the order, providing a good source of RBI at the shallow 3B position.

Honorable Mentions: 

  • Batters
    • Josh Lowe, OF, TBR (7% to 8%)
    • Oscar Gonzalez, OF, CLE (7% to 8%)
    • Tyrone Taylor, OF, MIL (5% to 6%)
  • Starters
    • Mitch White, SP/RP, LAD (8%: new): Andrew Heaney is on the IL (again) so White should make at least a few more starts. He might not be the best target in quality start leagues as he is not completely stretched out.
    • Dean Kremer, SP, BAL (5%: new)
  • Relievers
    • Ken Giles, RP, SEA (8%: new): Finally back from Tommy John surgery, it’s possible he eventually gets a look at the closer job.
    • Brooks Raley, RP, TBR (6%: returning)

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