The Wire Troll: Chris Devenski Looking Good in Los Angeles
Chris Devenski is finally back to being an asset. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Welcome back to another week of Fantasy baseball. We’re within shouting distance of the season’s halfway point, so be sure to squeeze every last ounce of value from the waiver wire.
This week, Shohei Ohtani took the Rangers apart while tying for the MLB home run lead; Luke Raley helped Tampa Bay become the first team to 50 wins in 2023; and Teoscar Hernandez built on what’s been a huge month for him.
And now, let’s get to this week’s…
Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Picks
Chris Devenski, RP, Los Angeles Angels (ESPN: 1.8 per cent; CBS: 5 per cent): Can you believe it’s been almost seven years since we last pimped Devenski? After that superb rookie effort, it’s been nearly all downhill since, thanks to a combination of injuries and ineffectiveness. However, Devenski looks better than ever in his first season with the Halos, averaging nearly a K per frame, going undefeated and posting a sparkling ERA with tremendous command. He’s not going to blow hitters away, but he has a strong changeup and throws strikes. Don’t be shocked if Devenski works his way into the saves mix at some point, but either way he’s a great asset in holds leagues and is someone whose delivery and demeanour have inspired mimic (see video below).
Dairon Blanco, OF, Kansas City Royals (ESPN: 0.5 per cent; CBS: 3 per cent): Who? We forgive you if minor league veteran Blanco hasn’t been on your radar, but he looks like a start-worthy option given what he was doing at Triple-A (amazing BA, fantastic on-base skills and mind-blowing speed). Since being recalled, he had delivered at least one hit in each game until going 0-fer Friday (although he did draw a walk), has been productive, and has gotten on base at a .375 clip. Grab Blanco while you can to see if his hot streak continues.
Dauri Moreta, RP, Pittsburgh Pirates (ESPN: 0.7 per cent; CBS: 4 per cent): Thanks to Colin Holderman (wrist) hitting the IL, Moreta is now the No. 2 man in Pirate pen and worth a look in holds leagues. Moreta had another strong outing on Friday (1 2/3 shutout frames), giving him eight scoreless games in his last nine tries. He’s already closing in on a career high in games pitched and has a nice record; other than a regression in his control, we’re really bullish on his upside.
Bo Naylor, C, Cleveland Guardians (ESPN: 0.5 per cent; CBS: 14 per cent): No. 44 on our Top 100 Prospects list, Naylor was piling up the runs at Triple-A despite not hitting quite as well this year. Mike Zunino has struggled as usual, finally getting DFAed on Friday, meaning it’s time for former first round pick Naylor to get his first extended look in the bigs. Catchers that can hit don’t come along every day, so jump on Naylor while you can.
Luis Matos, OF, San Francisco Giants (ESPN: 6.8 per cent; CBS: 48 per cent): Recalled earlier this week to make his long-awaited MLB debut, Matos has not disappointed so far with runs in each of his first two games. A tremendous contact hitter, he’s part of the Giants’ 2018 International class that hit it big, but wow, doesn’t it seem like we’ve been hearing about this kid forever? Although Matos went hitless on Friday, he drew three walks and sent a couple of balls for serious rides. This prospect has really turned things around this year, making him a very interesting speculative pickup given his potential to rack up a lot of total bases with a sweet power-speed-BA combo.
A.J. Minter, RP, Atlanta Braves (ESPN: 14.7 per cent; CBS: 29 per cent): Minter took advantage of injuries to earn some saves for the Braves last year, and he’s built on that this season despite some poor underlying numbers. Okay, so he’s already lost more games and has been more hittable this season, but he’s been a major workhorse, leading the NL in games pitched while recently settling into a groove with nine scoreless outings over his last 10 appearances.
Owen White, RP/SP, Texas Rangers (ESPN: 0.4 per cent; CBS: 8 per cent): White was recalled to make his MLB debut earlier this week and then promptly returned to Double-A after a somewhat shaky two-inning relief appearance. Still, he showed enough to think it won’t be long until he is back in Texas and even given a chance to start. White had a slow start in the minors this year, but has really turned things around in June. We’d like to see him keep the ball in the yard and get his K rate back where it was last year, but there’s some serious potential here.
Emmet Sheehan, SP, Los Angeles Dodgers (ESPN: 1.4 per cent; CBS: 24 per cent): Holy crap. That was some MLB debut by Sheehan, no-hitting the Giants over six innings. He seems likely to remain a starter over the long haul after dominating Double-A in his first full season at the level. If Sheehan can continue to restrict long balls and keep sharpening his control, he’s going to have a chance to be a serious keeper.
RotoRob Tune of the Day
Daft Punk was perfect parts house, funk, disco, techno, rock and synth-pop. Here’s a track from the band’s first remix album, Daft Club — the Slum Village version of “Aerodynamic,” originally an instrumental released in 2001.