The passing of the non-waiver trade deadline means two things. Your league’s trade deadline has also passed or it will be passing soon. The waiver wire acquisitions are even more important now, because there is no other way to replace injured or under-performing pieces of your roster.
If you play in an AL or NL-only league, your waiver wire is abuzz with the league transfers of some major names. NL-only managers will vie for Aroldis Chapman, Rich Hill, Matt Moore, Ivan Nova, Josh Reddick and Drew Hutchison. While AL-only managers will ante up for Jonathan Lucroy, Matt Duffy and Francisco Liriano.
Some of these players are uninspiring or worthy of a large FAAB investments. However, Lucroy, Hill and Chapman are worth breaking the bank for. If you have all or most of your FAAB bid, it would make sense to use all, if not 90-percent of what is left. These two players can significantly improve your roster by either keeping them on your team or trading them and adding pieces your roster is missing.
At this point in the season, many players are locked in. Hot streaks may last a little longer and cold streaks may be shorter. Most owners who are still engaged and are in the playoff chase are going to be looking for the slightest ray of hope from the waiver wire. Something that will give them that extra boost down the stretch.
There is still value on the wire. Can you find a spot for them on your roster? League size and roster size means waiver lists will vary but I will show you players most likely available in all your leagues.
Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire (Aug 4)
Mitch Moreland, 1B, Texas Rangers (38% owned)
Moreland is quietly putting together a nice season for the Rangers. In the past week, Moreland is 10-for-17 with four HRs and seven. The past month, Moreland is hitting .353 with seven HRs and 12 RBI. The Rangers are on fire right now and the offense is hitting on all cylinders. Moreland is a great source of power off the waiver wire.
Brandon Moss, 1B/OF, St. Louis Cardinals (27% owned)
Moss returned from the DL Aug 2 and picked up right where he left off, getting three hits including a home run. The Cardinals have a good offense and Moss has been a valuable piece of that lineup. The position eligibility means owners have no excuse for leaving him out of their daily lineup.
Max Kepler, OF, Minnesota Twins (38% owned)
Kepler has been red hot this past week. He hit three home runs Aug 1, and followed it up with another home run Aug 2. Kepler is now hitting .256 with 15 HRs and 47 RBI. Pick him up if he is still available.
Jon Gray, SP, Colorado Rockies (47% owned)
Fantasy owners are starting to see Gray’s value and refuse to be scared away by the Curse of Coors. Gray is pitching well at home and on the road recently. In his last 19 innings at home, he has allowed one earned run. A miracle if you ask me. On the season, Gray has posted a 3.77 ERA, a 1.13 WHIP and 120 Ks in 114 innings. Gray is no longer a streamer.
Dylan Bundy, SP, Baltimore Orioles (32% owned)
Bundy has allowed only three runs in his last 17.2 innings with 20 Ks and two BBs. Bundy has been given the chance to pitch and he has seemed to figure things out. His next start will come against the White Sox Aug 7. With the high strikeout upside, Bundy is worth adding in all leagues.
Jake Barrett, RP, Arizona Diamondbacks
Jim Johnson, RP, Atlanta Braves
Tyler Thornburg, RP, Milwaukee Brewers
Each of these pitchers are in a similar position. This week they are given the opportunity to close for their teams. None of these guys are guaranteed to hold the job for the remainder of the season, but if you are chasing saves, this is a good place to start. Jake Barrett allowed only one run in the entire month of July. Jim Johnson has earned five saves in the past two weeks. Tyler Thornburg has been dominant, sporting a K/9 of 12.45, a WHIP of .98 and ERA of 2.32.
Thornburg is my bet to keep the job and perform the best, but I wanted to give you options of the horse you choose to sit on. Remember, the closer carousel is never ending.
Edwin Diaz, RP, Seattle Mariners (56% owned)
At this ownership percentage, Diaz may already be gone. If someone was not paying attention, then pick him up immediately. Diaz has been dominant since being called up. Diaz has a K/9 of 17.67 and an ERA of 1.73 through 26 innings this season.
Seattle’s manager, Scott Servais, announced Aug 2 that Diaz will take over the closer role. He is the safest bet to keep the closer role for the remainder of the year. Seattle will be playing more meaningful games than the previous pitchers I spoke about. Diaz should see more save chances throughout the remainder of the season.
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