The waiver wire can be a goldmine for fantasy baseball players who are looking to boost their pitching stats. On most days, there is sure to be a starter (or three) just waiting to be scooped up who can help lead a fantasy team to riches. In today’s slice of fantasy advice, let’s take a look at some hurlers who should be in for a strong day on the hill on June 24 and are quite possibly available on a waiver wire near you.
Now hurry up and grab one of these pitchers before some other sly owner gets to them first. (Ownership percentages based off ESPN standard leagues)
Jake Arrieta: Chicago Cubs (59.6 percent)
It had been a dismal career for this right-hander up until this season, as he sported a career 5.16 ERA heading into 2014. Looks like this fellow was eating his Wheaties during the offseason, though, as he’s been magnificent so far this year. Arrieta has allowed one earned run or fewer in seven of his nine starts and owns an excellent 1.98 ERA on the season. He’s been nearly unhittable of late, as his ERA sits at a microscopic 0.74 over his last four starts and has struck out 27 batters over his last 20 innings pitched.
He’ll face a tough test today when the Cubs host the Cincinnati Reds. Though Cincy ranks just 21st in baseball at 3.95 runs scored per game, they’ve put up a far more imposing 5.14 per contest in June. On the bright side the Reds are still hitting just .251 against right-handed pitching on the season, so Arrieta and his 0.56 home ERA have a decent shot at cooling off those bats.
Danny Duffy: Kansas City Royals (10.4 percent)
Despite a 4-6 record, this southpaw has actually pitched very well this season. His 2.80 ERA and 1.05 WHIP are both outstanding, and opposing hitters have managed a meager .188 average against him to this point. Like Arrieta, Duffy is facing a difficult matchup today, but it’s one he has a good chance of conquering.
The Los Angeles Dodgers will be the Royals’ guests at Kauffman Stadium this evening. Though they rank 11th in the league in runs scored per game, their bats have been a little off of late, as they’ve only put up 3.83 runs per contest over their last 12. The best news for Duffy is the Dodgers are hitting just .227 versus left-handed pitching, which places them second to last in baseball ahead of only the inept San Diego Padres.
Jeff Locke: Pittsburgh Pirates (5.1 percent)
This lefty was a pleasant surprise for the Pirates last season as he posted a strong 3.52 ERA in 30 starts. Injuries have given him an opportunity to once again pitch with the big club, and he’s certainly taking advantage. After a rough first outing Locke has managed an impressive 2.14 ERA in three starts since, sporting an excellent 0.71 WHIP during that span.
He’ll get the easiest matchup on this list as the Pirates travel to Florida to take on the Tampa Bay Rays. Though Tampa has been swinging the bats better of late, they still rank just 28th in baseball in runs scored per game and have been held to one run or less in three of their last six contests. On top of that the Rays are batting just .242 when facing southpaws this year, so Locke has a very good chance at keeping his momentum going today.