The first week of baseball is now in the bank, however in fantasy, there are many leagues that do not commence until week #2. Perfect timing then for our Waiver Wire Pickups of the week! (Keep in mind that there is only a small sampling to go by after just one week).
We wish all of the owners out there much success this season and want to remind you all to stay active on the waiver wire for that added edge in your leagues. Good luck!
John Buck-C-=Mets- This is a ‘good news’-‘bad news’ pickup prospect this week. The good news is that Buck, who languished last season with the Marlins batting a meager .192 with 12 HRs and 43 RBIs , has now had an offensive explosion in the early going this season. He belted his third home run of the season off of Roy Halladay on Monday and now leads the National League in RBIs with an even dozen. Now the bad news. At some point in the season, Buck will become merely a bench player as the Mets will be calling up their top catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud. So if Buck is still available in your league, he will pays dividends for the short term while he’s on a roll but he’ll be on loan…
Darin Downs-RP-Tigers- If you’re in a deeper roto league and have the bench space, you might think of stashing this second year hard thrower. In 21 big league appearances, the 29 year old who has spent the majority of his time in the minors, has averaged 1K per inning. So far this young season, in just three games, Downs has two holds, 7 strikeouts, 2 BBs and has posted a 2.08 ERA to go along with a miniscule 0.46 WHIP. The closer situation in Detroit is one by committee with Phil Coke struggling, and 35 year old Joaquin Benoit unreliable. Downs is a low risk-high reward pickup and is virtually unowned in leagues.
Franklin Gutierrez-OF-Mariners- Now in his fifth year with Seattle, Gutierrez has been plagued by the injury bug over the past couple of seasons and so manager Eric Wedge has been monitoring his playing time to start the season. Off to a pretty good start to the season- 2 homers, 6 RBIs and a .319 batting average, Gutierrez is a solid bet to net you a 15/15 season.
Miguel Gonzalez-SP,RP-Orioles- This converted relief pitcher is in his second season in the majors and we feel he could be a “baby sleeper’. In 16 big league career starts, Gonzalez is 10-4 with a 3.22 ERA and 1.20 WHIP. He has an 81/37 K/BB ratio and has a decent arsenal of pitches. A true test will be when he faces the Yankees on Friday who he has gone 1-1 with the last two time he’s faced them striking out 17 while walking just 1. More impotantantly, he only gave up 1 earned run in 14 innings pitched in those games. Someone to watch and consider in deeper roto leagues.
Justin Masterson-SP-Indians- As opposed to a Waiver Wire Pickup, Masterson is someone you might consider ‘watching’ before adding unless you are in a very deep league. One of the most added pitchers over the past 72 hours, we recommend caution with him. Masterson just started his sixth year in the majors and his career record is an underwhelming 40-53. His best season was in 2011 when he went 12-10. Yes, he’s off to an amazing start with 2 wins, 13 K’s, a 0.69 ERA and 0.71 WHIP. But he’ll face the White Sox and Red Sox in his next two starts and we think his great start will be hard to sustain. Just proceed with caution.