Hot wire: 10 men to pluck off fantasy waivers

July 19th, 2017

Could your fantasy team use more power? What about steals? Runs, RBIs or wins?

Regardless of your holes, the fantasy waiver wire has a plug or long-term fix to pick up today. Check the following 10 men -- all sitting in waivers in many leagues, and all ready to help you win.

, 1B/2B/3B, Mets

With a surplus of power hitters on many fantasy rosters, some owners need to turn their attention to players such as Rivera, who can provide a helpful batting mark. A line-drive machine (career 24.2 percent rate) with a lifetime .324 average in the Minors, Rivera has the skills to maintain his big league .306 mark through the remainder of the season.

Consider in: 15-team mixed leagues

Whit Merrifield, 2B/OF, Royals

Like Rivera, Merrifield (.286 average) should provide owners with a helpful batting mark. However, a collection of base knocks is just part of the package for the table-setter in a resurgent Royals lineup that ranks 12th in baseball with 196 runs scored since June 1. With fleet feet (15 steals) and respectable power skills (seven homers across 287 at-bats), Merrifield should continue to contribute in all standard categories.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

, third baseman, White Sox

The trade of has opened the door for Moncada, who should make his White Sox debut on Wednesday. And as the No. 1 prospect in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, the 22-year-old should slide into the active lineup in virtually every league on the expectation that he will produce a handful of homers and rank among the American League stolen-base leaders from this point forward.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

Tommy Pham, outfielder, Cardinals

Sure, Pham will likely experience a decline on his current .308 batting average due to expected regression of his .383 BABIP. But the 29-year-old has played well enough to cement a starting role with the Cardinals, and he has the necessary power and speed (12 homers, 13 steals across 259 plate appearances) to post a 20-20 campaign despite spending all of April in the Minors.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

, outfielder, Dodgers

Owners who leave Pederson on waivers due to his unremarkable season-long statistics (.246 average, nine homers across 187 at-bats) are missing out on a chance to grab a red-hot hitter in a stellar lineup. Since returning from the disabled list on June 13, the outfielder has posted an outstanding .305/.424/.659 slash line as part of a Dodgers offense that ranks fourth in baseball with 171 runs across that 37-day stretch.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

, starter, Reds

Castillo is off to a solid start in the Majors based on his surface stats, having produced a 3.41 ERA and an 11.2 K/9 rate but also a 1.34 WHIP and just two quality starts across five outings. But those who look a little closer will notice that the rookie has survived a remarkably tough schedule that has required him to face one of the seven highest-scoring teams in baseball during each start. Wise owners will expect Castillo to dominate more manageable foes.

Consider in: 12-team mixed leagues

, starter, Rockies

Many owners are likely leaving Hoffman on waivers due to his mediocre 4.33 ERA and hitter-friendly home venue. However, those who do a little more research will notice that if we omit the fourth inning of a start against the D-backs on June 21 -- that's right, just one inning -- the righty has produced an impressive 3.06 ERA across his other 61 2/3 frames. Sitting at 6-1, Hoffman is poised to deliver low ratios and plenty of wins with the backing of a productive Rockies lineup.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

, SP/RP, Padres

Since returning from the disabled list on July 4, Cahill has resumed his bounce-back season by logging a 20:3 K:BB ratio across 16 innings. With stellar swing-and-miss skills (11.1 K/9 rate in 2017) and a heavy ground-ball lean, the right-hander should be a fixture in shallow-league lineups for the rest of the year.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

, reliever, Phillies

Although opportunities have been rare, Neris is the only Phillies reliever to collect a save since June 7. And, with veteran Pat Neshek's name popping up in trade rumors, Neris is likely going to be without ninth-inning competition by Aug. 1. While the 28-year-old may not receive enough save chances to be a top-15 closer from this point forward, he should be a safe source of at least a dozen saves.

Consider in: 10-team mixed leagues

, reliever, Cardinals

With all due respect to the Nationals and White Sox, the Cardinals' ninth-inning situation may be the messiest in baseball right now. And while Rosenthal owns a mediocre 3.72 ERA and a 4.0 BB/9 rate, he may be manager Mike Matheny's best closer candidate due to his eye-popping 14.4 K/9 rate and impressive 2.16 FIP. Owners who are seeking a high-upside reliever should take a chance on Rosenthal ranking among the top National League relievers in saves and whiffs during the second half.

Consider in: 12-team mixed leagues