The list of players below are owned in less than 50% of fantasy baseball leagues (according to statistics from CBS Sportsline), and can provide some valuable numbers to carry your team into the long summer months.
Several former stars of fantasy baseball are readily available out there on your local waiver wires. Maybe you can stock up your bench. Maybe you can replace some injured stars. Maybe you just need some new names on your team to get excited about.
Whatever your reason, the Waiver Wire Warriors of Week Five include:
- Chad Gaudin, P, Oakland Athletics (45%): Gaudin was hott in the first half of the 2007 season, but fell to earth in the second half. Similar to last season, Gaudin is once again on fire, going 3-0 with 0.90 ERA in last three starts. His next start is scheduled against the Texas Rangers at home, where he is 2-0 with an ERA of 0.64 lifetime. Its hard to advise against taking Gaudin as a situational pitcher, especially on weekends or when he is a two-start pitcher. If you are investing long-term in Gaudin, trading him in the weeks leading up to the All-Star break, when his value peaks, might be a good idea.
- Aaron Cook, P, Colorado Rockies (44%): Cook is currently 3-1 with 17 strikeouts with an ERA of 2.91. While his numbers aren’t particularly sexy, almost every fantasy baseball GM needs a pitcher during two-start weeks who can deliver the goods – lots of innings, a low ERA, and victories. Cook has won three consecutive starts. In his last outing, he pitched eight full innings and gave up two earned. Barry Zito owners would gladly take those numbers once a month over what Zito has provided so far this season, right?
- Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C, Texas Rangers (48%): Salty was one of FBD’s favorite prospects coming into the 2008 season, but started the year at AAA. He was called up over the weekend and has the potential to be a Victor Martinez-esque slugger at catcher. In 2007, he hit 11 homeruns in 308 at-bats, so the potential is there for productivity at the catcher position. Salty is definitely worth a flier in mixed leagues, especially for owners who have to replace Jorge Posada for the next two weeks.
- Scott Rolen, 3B, Toronto Blue Jays (33%): Rolen has returned to the Jays lineup after starting the season on the DL and is doing what he does best – putting the ball in play. He logged four hits in his debut series over the weekend against Kansas City, including one homerun and four RBI. Rolen won’t bash a bunch of homeruns, but being in the Jays lineup will lead to many opportunities to drive in runs.
- Eric Hinske, 1B, Tampa Bay Rays (30%): Hinkse has six hits in the last seven days, five RBI, three runs scored and one homerun. On the year, he’s hitting .322 with five homeruns and 13 RBI. His production dropped consistently after his 2002 rookie season in which he won AL Rookie of the Year, but Hinkse has likely earned a starting spot on the field and should see regular at-bats during the season with his recent performance. Is he currently worth a spot on your bench?