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 glory. 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 July 28 and are quite possibly available on a waiver wire near you.
(Ownership percentages based off ESPN standard leagues)
Jesse Chavez, Oakland Athletics (78.2 percent):
In his first season as a full-time starter, this hurler has been surprisingly effective. Despite a hideous 5.50 career ERA heading into 2014, Chavez has managed a solid 8-6 record to go along with an excellent 3.14 ERA this year. Chavez also managed to help fantasy teams in the strikeout department as he’s posted a strong 8.53 K/9 to this point. Considering the matchup, he should be able to improve on all of those numbers today.
The A’s will kick off a road series with the Houston Astros this evening. The Astros have been one of baseball’s weakest offenses on the season, as they rank a lowly 27th in the league in runs per game. The team has struggled mightily overall of late, as they’ve posted a 2-8 record over their last 10 played and have scored three runs or fewer in eight of those contests.
To make the matchup even more appetizing, Houston is striking out at a 24 percent clip against right-handers, which is the second-highest mark in baseball.
A.J. Burnett, Philadelphia Phillies (56.6 percent):
This fireballer has managed to put trade whispers aside and pitch quite well in recent weeks. Burnett has allowed three earned runs or fewer in eight of his last nine outings, and has pitched seven innings or longer in all but two games over that span. He’s been missing a lot of bats of late too, as he’s struck out 42 batter over his past 40.2 innings of work.
The Phillies will head to the Big Apple to begin a series with the New York Mets today. Although the Mets were rolling along quite well offensively heading into the All-Star break, things haven’t exactly gone according to plan since. In 10 games since the break, the team has managed to put up a paltry 2.20 runs per contest and haven’t scored more than four runs in any of those games.
Plenty of strikeouts should be available from Burnett too, as the Mets average 8.23 Ks per contest as a team, good for the eighth-most in baseball.
Chase Anderson, Arizona Diamondbacks 3.4 percent):
The D-backs pitching staff is one of the worst in baseball, but it’s not because of this fellow. Anderson has posted a very serviceable 3.58 ERA on the season and is rolling along rather well right now, having allowed two earned runs or fewer in seven of his nine outings. More of the same is likely in the cards tonight, as Arizona will kick off a series with baseball’s worst team since the All-Star break.
The Cincinnati Reds will welcome the Diamondbacks in for the start of a three-game series on this fine Monday. To say the Reds have struggled since the All-Star break would be an understatement. Not only has the team stumbled out to a dismal 1-8 record, they’ve put up an embarrassingly low 1.78 runs per contest over that span.