The ever-increasing number of players on the DL means that managers need to be on the waiver wire as often as possible. Staying active is instrumental in keeping an edge in your league and with names of hitters like Matt Kemp, Evan Longoria, Pablo Sandoval, Kevin Youkilis, Juan Uribe, and Mark Reynolds, all residing on the disabled list, here are some options to consider…
Andy Dirks-OF-Tigers- What a month of May it’s been so far for the 26 year old. In just his sophomore year with Detroit, Dirks has enjoyed a .425 batting average to go along with his 2 home runs and 6 RBI. Currently batting .361, he is among the leaders in BA in the major leagues. Dirks has been batting in the 2 hole over the past seven games and has a modest eight game hitting streak going. With sluggers like Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder following him in the order, he is sure to help out in the runs category as well. Dirks is owned in only 27% of leagues so he is widely available.
Chris Johnson-3B-Astros- If you’re in need of some power numbers as well as a fairly high batting average, Johnson has them both. He has belted four homers in his last 26 at bats and has been batting at or near .300 since May 1st. Can’t guarantee that he will sustain these numbers as he has only hit 18 HR’s in his 719 total at bats in his major league career. That would equate to 1 every 40 AB which should put him at around 15 for a season. Johnson is 2 years removed from batting .308 in 345 AB so the BA is legit. He is available in over 60% of leagues.
Will Middlebrooks-3B-RedSox- This is a very good player who could possibly be sent down to Triple-A when Kevin Youkilis returns from the DL (in about a week), or he could end up replacing Youkilis if the Sox decide to trade him. In either case, he’s worth an add in deeper leagues until his fate is decided upon. In the 11 games he’s played in this year, he has been one of the hottest 3B in the league, batting .304 with 4 HR, 13 RBI, and 9 runs scored. The 23 year old rookie, at least based on this small sampling, has a bright future on a team that really is going nowhere; at least up till this point of the season anyway. If you have room on your bench for a speculative pickup, or can grab and deploy him for the next week until Youkilis returns, Middlebrooks is available in about 50% of leagues.
Elliot Johnson-2B/SS-Rays- With Evan Longoria scheduled to be out for another 5-7 weeks suffering with a torn left hamstring, Johnson has seen extensive time at 3B. This should make him eligibile at his third position which, in addition to his hot streak he’s been on, has made him a decent add in leagues of 12+ for the moment. The late season call-up last season has gone 11-for-22 over his last seven games and has seen his average rise 100 points in the process. He’s got some pop; 2 HR in his last nine games, and speed; 6 SB in limited playing time this season. Johnson is only owned in 7% of leagues.
Gregor Blanco-OF-Giants-Manager Bruce Bochy named Blanco the team’s starting right fielder on Tuesday. Blanco is hitting leadoff and can offer some stolen bases for managers desperate for some speed as well as help in the run scoring category. Over his last five games, Blanco has batted .368, has stolen 3 bases, and scored 7 runs. Definitely serviceable. Pro-rated over the course of a full season, he should finish with 110 runs scored and around 30 SB. He’s barely owned in leagues so take a flier on him. Deeper leagues can feel free to grab him off waivers.