Injuries are always a part of baseball, but it is still sad to see anybody, especially someone the likes of Adam Wainwright go down for the season. He was off to a real good start too, so this is a huge blow not only to the Cardinals, but to Fantasy owners as well.
There are plenty of other injuries affecting teams; Jose Reyes, Carlos Gomez, Yasiel Puig, Masahiro Tanaka, among others, but Wainwright’s season ending injury is quite possibly the biggest one to hit us post Fantasy Baseball draft season. All of these make us scramble to find replacements off the waiver wire.
Before I go on, I want to make sure I mention the tragedy that is happening in Baltimore right now. I’m not one to get on a soapbox, but this one hits home a little, as I live just five minutes outside of the city. What happened to Freddie Gray was a horrible crime by local Police and I absolutely agree that there needs to be justice and change. However get your message out to the authorities by contacting the right people and even protesting, peacefully.
The Rioting and looting is just awful. You’re tearing down and destroying your own city. What does this do but make you look like a bunch of, how did Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake put it? Oh yeah, Thugs. Oh and you’re messing with my Orioles baseball, that’s not cool.
Alright enough of that, let’s get to why you are really here and that is waiver wire targets for your Fantasy Baseball team. I would have loved to have put John Axford and Brett Cecil on this list, who both at the time of writing this have ownerships below 30% on ESPN, but I’m going to guess that will go up drastically and when this gets published they won’t.
Needless to say if they happen to be available in your league, go get them. I always say no closer should be available in any league.
Week 5 Waiver Wire Targets
All players I am suggesting are owned in 30% or less of ESPN leagues. Of course if there are better players available in your league that are owned in more than 30% of leagues, by all means get them first.
Wilmer Flores, SS, New York Mets Owned in 16.5% of ESPN Leagues
Flores was not drafted even in the deepest of leagues and as you can tell from his low ownership percentage still has not gotten a lot of attention.
He should though as he is now the 12th-ranked shortstop according to ESPN.
This is even after a rough start half way through the month of April that had his batting average sitting at .160 and just three runs.
He now has three home runs, eight RBI, nine runs and has his batting average up to .270.
Andre Ethier, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers 5.1%
Yasiel Puig and Carl Crawford are on the DL, so Ethier is going to be plenty of playing time for the foreseeable future. Yes, Alex Guerrero should get plenty of time as well and is who you really want, but I’ve already mentioned him in a previous article not to mention he is owned over 30% of leagues making him disqualified for this article.
Back to Ethier. He has had a good season with limited at bats, hitting over .300 with two home runs, six RBI and nine runs. Look for him to continue that success now with a full allotment of at bats.
Justin Maxwell, OF, San Francisco Giants 20.0%
There is concern with Maxwell’s playing time when Hunter Pence returns, but I believe that with the way Maxwell is swinging the bat, the Giants will make sure they find time to keep him in there. Nori Aoki might be the one to lose playing time because of it, but honestly you don’t care about that right now with Pence still a couple weeks away. Anything can happen in that time. What you do care about is Maxwell is hitting very well and can help your team right now.
Jesse Chavez, SP, Oakland Athletics 6.3%
Chavez had a very good season last year overall. It was derailed a bit in July and ultimately the trade Oakland made for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel sent him to the bullpen for the second half of the season. He has started off even better this year, mostly in the bullpen, but did very well in his one spot start and now finds himself back in the rotation to the expense of Kendall Graveman. For those of you who lost Wainwright, taking a chance on Chavez isn’t a bad idea.
Jarred Cosart, SP, Miami Marlins 5.3%
The Marlins are not playing very good baseball, but you can’t blame that on Jarred Cosart. He owns a 2.49 ERA and 0.91 WHIP yet only is 1-1. His next start on May 3rd is a good one against the Phillies and their inept offense. It would be nice if the strikeouts are better, but his career average is just 5.42 K/9, so don’t expect much more. Still the nice ERA and WHIP make him worth owning at this point. If you plan on streaming Wainwright’s spot in your lineup for a while, then Cosart is a great option this week and possibly for a few more starts.
Andre Ethier Photo Credit: LWYang
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