Week 20 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Top MLB Pickups + Sleeper Stashes
Here is The Game Day’s Week 20 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Top Free-Agent Pickups. Set these key Week 20 MLB Pickups for your waiver wire list this weekend.
Week 20 Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Top Pickups
Kyle Finnegan, RP, Washington Nationals (48% rostered on Yahoo!)
Kyle Finnegan has emerged as the Washington Nationals’ closer following the trade of Brad Hand to the Toronto Blue Jays, picking up a pair of saves and a win since his departure. Finnegan’s 3.07 ERA is more glowing than his 4.17 SIERA, but he’s a capable reliever who can hold down the closer gig.
There are a plethora of forthcoming relievers in this piece. However, Finnegan appears to offer the best blend of job security and skills, earning him the feature-player treatment.
- Kyle Finnegan Waiver Wire Tip: I don’t advise breaking the bank for Finnegan, as there are other newly minted closers widely available. Still, he’s worthy of a slightly higher FAAB bid in the 15-20% range.
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Logan Webb, SP, San Francisco Giants (39%)
I couldn’t bring myself to include Logan Webb among my suggested two-start pitchers last week because of brutal matchups with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros. I should have had more faith in the breakout righty, who limited both clubs to three runs combined across 12 innings.
Perhaps most impressively, Webb’s start against Los Angeles was his second time facing them in a one-week span. He’s the real deal, owning a 3.33 ERA, 3.53 SIERA, 1.21 WHIP, 7.6 BB%, 24.1 K%, 60.3 GB%, and 30.4 CSW% in 15 appearances (14 starts) spanning 73 innings, per FanGraphs.
- Logan Webb Waiver Wire Tip: Webb’s statistical profile is dreamy, mixing strikeouts and grounders. He’s also backed by one of MLB’s top offenses, enhancing his chances for earning wins. Gamers should bid accordingly, ponying up a FAAB bid in the 25-30% range.
Patrick Wisdom, 1B/3B, Chicago Cubs (31%)
The Chicago Cubs cleaned house at the trade deadline, dealing Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Javy Baez, and Craig Kimbrel, among others. Patrick Wisdom has taken over the cleanup spot as a result, where he’s batted in seven of his last eight games. Chicago doesn’t have the most fantasy-friendly lineup these days, but he now has more opportunities for runs and RBIs.
The slugging corner infielder’s .272 batting average is rather lucky considering his 37.9 K% and .371 BABIP. Nevertheless, he’s been putting a charge into the ball with 16 homers in 198 plate appearances. He’s even stolen three bases in four attempts for good measure.
- Patrick Wisdom Waiver Wire Tip: Wisdom’s a power source for gamers who can stomach an inevitable downturn in batting average. A FAAB bid in the neighborhood of 15-20% is advisable.
Week 20 MLB Waiver Wire: Sleeper Pickups (6-15% FAAB)
- Tylor Megill, SP, New York Mets (49% rostered)
- Myles Straw, SS/OF, Cleveland Indians (44%)
- Miguel Sano, 1B/3B, Minnesota Twins (41%)
- Andrew Vaughn, 1B/OF, Chicago White Sox (37%)
- NEW – Touki Toussaint, SP/RP, Atlanta Braves (34%)
- NEW – Cal Quantrill, SP/RP, Cleveland Indians (33%)
- NEW – Kolten Wong, 2B, Milwaukee Brewers (33%)
- Jo Adell, OF, Los Angeles Angels (33%)
- Huascar Ynoa, SP, Atlanta Braves (33%)
- Josiah Gray, SP, Washington Nationals (30%)
- Abraham Toro, 2B/3B, Seattle Mariners (27%)
- Tanner Houck, SP, Boston Red Sox (26%)
- Dylan Floro, RP, Miami Marlins (22%)
- Cole Sulser, RP, Baltimore Orioles (16%)
- Tyler Clippard, SP/RP, Arizona Diamondbacks (14%)
- Chris Stratton, SP/RP, Pittsburgh Pirates (1%)
- Manuel Rodriguez, RP, Chicago Cubs (1%)
Tylor Megill’s week got off to a messy start against the Miami Marlins when he allowed a season-high five runs (four earned) in five innings. Even so, the 26-year-old righty has been more than the New York Mets could have hoped for in his rookie campaign with a 2.68 ERA, 3.78 SIERA, 1.12 WHIP, and 25.9 K% in eight starts lasting 40 1/3 innings.
The Houston Astros dealt speedster Myles Straw to the Cleveland Indians, where he’s immediately slotted in as their new leadoff hitter. While his greatest fantasy asset is his speed (18 steals), batting first will enable him to score more runs as well. Straw’s five stolen bases in the second half are tied for second-most in MLB behind Starling Marte.
Miguel Sano is a batting-average liability, but his power is undeniable. The 28-year-old slugger is locked in as the Minnesota Twins’ everyday first baseman, so if you need pop and can sacrifice batting average, he’s a viable alternative to spending up for Wisdom.
Andrew Vaughn broke camp with the Chicago White Sox and needed time to adjust to big-league pitching. The 23-year-old rookie has done just that, slashing .333/.385/.571 with six homers in 31 games since June 29th. Vaughn’s an ascending young talent in a fantasy-friendly lineup.
NEW – Touki Toussaint rebounded from a disastrous start on July 30, holding the St. Louis Cardinals to three runs (two earned) in 5 and 1/3 innings. With his most recent start, he’s held the opposition to two runs or fewer in three of four turns. Toussaint’s 3.79 SIERA, 1.12 WHIP, 6.5 BB%, and 24.7 K% are all stellar marks.
NEW – Cal Quantrill opened the year in the bullpen. Then, he struggled a bit transitioning to starting. Now, he’s settled into a groove of late, allowing three runs or fewer while pitching five or more innings in seven straight starts. The strikeouts are mounting of late as well, punching out five, then six, and culminating in an uncharacteristic 10-strikeout performance on Friday night with an eye-popping 20 swinging strikes and 15 called strikes on 98 pitches. Quantrill’s worth scooping up, hoping things continue to click.
NEW – Kolten Wong is back yet again. He’s hitting a .291/.346/.457, chipping in eight homers, eight stolen bases, and scoring 43 runs from the leadoff position. The Beer Makers play seven games next week, and six are projected against righties, giving Wong the platoon advantage most of the week. He has staying power on rosters. Still, he gets a short-term boost next week.
Speaking of players on the rise, Jo Adell is back in the bigs after struggling in his initial call-up with the Los Angeles Angels last year. The toolsy prospect showcased his power/speed combo in the minors this year, mashing 23 homers and swiping eight bags in 73 games at Triple-A. While his 29.2 K% there suggests some risk, the 22-year-old has enormous upside and is worth rolling the dice on.
Huascar Ynoa was roughed up in a recent rehab start, but getting healthy and building up his pitch count is encouraging. Ynoa’s 3.02 ERA, 3.41 SIERA, 1.05 WHIP, and 27.9 K% for the Atlanta Braves earlier this year were outstanding, illustrating the 23-year-old’s potential. He’s a high-end stash option.
Josiah Gray was one of the key pieces in Washington’s return for Max Scherzer and Trea Turner. The 23-year-old rookie has only made three MLB appearances thus far, but his ceiling is sky-high after compiling a 2.41 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, and 4.6 K/BB ratio in his minor league career.
Abraham Toro has settled in as the starting second baseman for the Seattle Mariners since coming over from the Houston Astros and is swinging a hot bat lately. The 24-year-old has hit safely in 10 of his last 11 games with five home runs, eight RBIs, and a stolen base during that span.
The rotation for the Boston Red Sox will be crowded when Chris Sale returns. However, some underachievers could allow talented youngster Tanner Houck to secure a regular spot. In nine appearances (seven starts) since debuting last year, Houck owns a stellar 1.62 ERA, 2.38 FIP, 1.00 WHIP, and 11.8 K/9 rate.
You’ve reached the newly-minted closer portion of the program. Interestingly enough, the percentage of the rosters with Dylan Floro, Cole Sulser, Tyler Clippard, Chris Stratton, and Manuel Rodriguez reflects my feelings for handicapping their save chances the rest of the year. Having said that, I have Floro, Sulser, and Clippard as one tier with Stratton and Rodriguez slightly behind them, and the following waiver suggestions will reflect the tier difference. Bid accordingly.
Week 20 MLB Waiver Wire: Depth & Streamers (0-5% FAAB)
- Brendan Rodgers, 2B/SS, Colorado Rockies (23% rostered)
- Aledmys Diaz, 1B/2B/3B/OF, Houston Astros (17%)
- David Bednar, RP, Pittsburgh Pirates (12%)
- Codi Heuer, RP, Chicago Cubs (8%)
- Yadiel Hernandez, OF, Washington Nationals (5%)
- Gregory Polanco, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates (5%)
- Edward Olivares, OF, Kansas City Royals (4%)
Brendan Rodgers and the Colorado Rockies hit the road next week, but Rodgers is coming off an excellent road trip where he hit safely in all eight games and clubbed four homers. The 24-year-old has been on fire lately and now occupies the two-hole in Colorado’s lineup as a result.
Aledmys Diaz’s reinstatement from the injured list coincided with Houston’s trade of Toro to Seattle, giving Diaz a chance to play all over the diamond for the Astros’ loaded offense. As an above-average hitter in a stacked lineup with multi-position eligibility, he’s a valuable bench bat.
David Bednar and Codi Heuer might receive save chances for their respective rebuilding clubs down the stretch. They’re viable dart throws if your FAAB budget prevents you from reaching up to the above group.
Yadiel Hernandez, Gregory Polanco, and Edward Olivares are all intriguing outfielders who have a clear path to playing time the rest of the way. Hernandez is on the older side (33), but he’s crushed Triple-A pitching and currently has an .812 OPS in 126 plate appearances for Washington. Polanco has been a solid source of power (11 homers) and speed (13 steals) for the Pirates this year. Finally, Olivares has homered in three of four games to begin August and should remain in Kansas City’s lineup going forward.