Hidden Gems of the Waiver Wire

No matter what kind of league you may be in, there are always players who are either underperforming or playing above expectations. This, matter of fact, is the reason the waiver wire is in place. But while some players are more likely to be added, some players go unnoticed. In this article I’ll cover a few players who have played well, but haven’t yet garnered enough attention for whatever reason. All of which should be rostered in all leagues of 12 teams or more.

Jacob Turner, Mia SP

Don’t let the Miami Marlins uniform fool you. In three starts this season Jacob Turner has earned a 1.80 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. Although he only has one win on the season, he is yet to put a loss on his record. If he were in any other uniform there’s a good chance he would have three wins. Clay Buchholz has a 1.71 ERA and 1.02 WHIP this year and Adam Wainwright has a 2.18 ERA to go along with a 1.01 WHIP. Yes, they strike guys out at a quicker rate, but the numbers are there. If he’s available in your league and you’ve got a guy on the tail end of your rotation that makes you go “ehh,” then you should definitely pick up Turner. Also, Turner is scheduled to start on Monday against Arizona, giving him a two-start week.

Mike Carp, Bos OF

Mike Carp teased some Fantasy owners with a Trout-like fishiness in 2011, but slumped hard in 2012. After being written off as a viable fantasy asset due to lack of time on the field, the hook has been pulled from his lip in Boston and he’s been given another chance. Carp didn’t immediately see consistent playing time in Boston, but he earned a starting spot and has been playing regularly since late May. This season he’s made the most of his time on the field and in the batters box, hitting .338/.371/.680. Although he may not hit like that all season he’s definitely worth being had given his consistency. Last week he was owned in less than five percent of fantasy leagues. While that number has grown, it hasn’t grown enough given his performance this season.

Jeff Baker, Tex 1B

Rangers outfielder Jeff Baker has quietly put up better numbers than that one guy who played center field for Texas last year. And while that doesn’t say much, his numbers are actually MUCH better than those of Josh Hamilton. Baker–who is eligible at 1B, 2B, 3B and OF, has hit nine homers in 167 less at-bats than Hamilton. Baker has also hit .317, with 16 RBIs and 13 runs on the season. At the rate he’s going; which will certainly decline to some degree, he would be good for a 30-home run season to go along with 50-60 RBI and 50-60 runs scored. Last week Baker was owned in just about as many leagues as me and that shouldn’t be the case. He’s now owned in about 10 percent of leagues. If he’s available in your league, drop your least productive player and pick him up.

Rick Porcello, Det SP

It looks like Rick Porcello has been drinking from the same Gatorade jug as Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer long enough. In his last four starts Porcello has pitched 27 innings and allowed just four earned runs in that span. He has also struck out 30 and allowed a measly 15 hits. A change in where he stands on the mound has been credited to this turnaround and it doesn’t look like this change will be for the short-term. I liked Porcello a lot before the season, but now he’s given everyone else a reason to like him as well. Porcello should be owned in all leagues. If your league doesn’t share that same sentiment, cut the fat and add some muscle.

Kyle Blanks, SD 1B/OF

Last week Kyle Blanks was owned in less than 10 percent of leagues and has steadily increased that percentage as time and overall productivity from Blanks has continued. And for good reason. Blanks was considered by many as a top prospect at one time because of a solid eye at the plate and major power potential. But after a call-up in 2009 and a Tommy John surgery that followed, Blanks was never that guy everyone expected him to be — until now. Blanks is hitting .285 with six home runs, 22 RBIs, 20 runs on the season and in less at-bats than most, with 123. Although he’s filled in for Yonder Alonso nicely, it won’t be enough to keep his spot at first. He’s made a strong case to stay in the lineup and he should be owned in more than 40 percent of Fantasy leagues. If you own Anthony Rizzo, Todd Frazier or Adam Dunn, Blanks is someone worth adding to fill their spot.

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