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The Wire Troll: Chas McCormick Coming Back

May 18, 2024 | By RotoRob | comment on this post
Chas McCormick is expected back soon for the Houston Astros.
Chas McCormick is a great buy-low candidate. (MLB.com)

Welcome back to another week of Fantasy baseball. Things are likely coming more into focus for your teams now, but you still have tons of time to fix your issues. Work that wire!

This week, Juan Soto says he’s willing to discuss an extension with the Yankees; Emmet Sheehan has undergone season-ending elbow surgery; and Cole Ragans bounced back in a huge way, justifying your faith in him as a crazy good DFS selection.

So while you ponder whether either team will score in the first inning of the Reds-Dodgers game Saturday night (currently -122 for under 0.5 runs as per FanDuel), let’s get to this week’s…

Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Picks

Chas McCormick, OF, Houston Astros (ESPN: 9.4 per cent; CBS: 47 per cent): Heading into last season, McCormick wasn’t even a top 100 outfielder, but he turned into a Fantasy steal, posting a very productive breakout campaign in which he hit better than ever. That effort — and an expected increased role — made him a popular sleeper pick this spring. However, ineffectiveness and then a hammy woe has rendered McCormick to many a waiver wire. He’s currently on rehab assignment and expected back any day, so there’s a great opportunity here because we know he’s much better than he showed to start the season. McCormick was killing sliders early on, and once he gets back to delivering his usual positive value against changeups, he’ll start producing as projected. No longer just a pull hitter (although he can still do that in the virtual world… see video below) as he was coming up through the ranks, this late-bloomer developed a ton of oppo power which should soon be on display.

Alexander Albertus, SS/3B, Los Angeles Dodgers (ESPN: NA; CBS: NA): Looking for a sleeper in dynasty leagues? This Arubian infielder just keeps getting better since signing in 2022. Albertus is raking in the ACL, racking up the total bases and proving highly productive. He’s going to be ready for Class-A very soon and is someone you want to track closely.

Kyle Muller, RP/SP, Oakland Athletics (ESPN: 0.5 per cent; CBS: 2 per cent): Muller really caught our eye when he made his MLB debut in 2021, but it’s been a hell of struggle since. Shifted to a long relief role this season, he’s really turned things around, posting his best ERA so far, and now he’s could get another crack at the rotation with Alex Wood (shoulder) on the IL (although Mitch Spence got the start Friday). Muller is generating a higher percentage of called and swinging strikes this season, so if he starts logging longer outings (either via starting or bulk relief work), he could provide some AL-only value.

Miguel Andujar, OF, Oakland Athletics (ESPN: 0.1 per cent; CBS: 1 per cent): A graduate of our 2018 Top Prospects ranking, Andujar has somewhat revitalized his career in the last couple of seasons, even if his PT has been at a premium. He’s currently rehabbing a knee injury, and bears watching as he was quite productive in his first game. Andujar has gotten more disciplined, not swinging at offerings out of the strike zone as often the last couple of years, so he could provide some sneaky AL-only value when he returns to the bigs.

Others to Consider

Tommy Pham, OF, Chicago White Sox (ESPN: 6.7 per cent; CBS: 23 per cent): We pimped Pham last July as he was in the midst of his best season in five years. Unfortunately, he cooled off that month and only recovered slightly down the stretch. But Pham is hitting well enough early on to be worth adding again. In dynasty leagues, note that with just one appearance so far, he could be hard pressed to get enough fielding time to qualify for OF in 2025.

Austin Wells, C, New York Yankees (ESPN: 2 per cent; CBS: 18 per cent): No. 86 in our Top 100 Prospects this year, Wells hasn’t hit as well as he did in his first taste of the bigs. However, his strike zone judgment has been superb, he’s improving so far in May, drove in a run on Wednesday and had hits in three straight and four of five before taking an 0-fer on Friday. Wells is driving positive value thanks to his glovework and it looks like his bat is starting to come around.

Andrew Heaney, SP, Texas Rangers (ESPN: 12.2 per cent; CBS: 29 per cent): Notwithstanding a rough outing Friday and a goose egg in the win column, Heaney has pitched well lately while racking up solid K numbers, and a slightly improved cFIP suggests that better results are coming.

Mark Leiter Jr., RP, Chicago Cubs (ESPN: 3.3 per cent; CBS: 8 per cent): Leiter had a tough outing on Friday (for some reason being brought in when the game was out of reach), but the fact is that he’s now the No. 2 man in the Cubs bullpen with Adbert Alzolay out and Hector Neris earning the saves.

Davis Schneider, 2B/OF, Toronto Blue Jays (ESPN: 5 per cent; CBS: 32 per cent): Schneider came out of nowhere last year to earn consideration as a Wire Troll All Star (of course, at the very least he deserved some hardware for his porn ‘stache), and he’s at it again now. He snapped a skid with a two-run dinger on Friday as he attempts to prove last year’s power display was no fluke. Not bad for a 28th round pick, huh?

RotoRob Tune of the Day

English singer Roger Keith Barrett was better known as Syd Barrett, co-founder of Pink Floyd and one of rock’s earliest acid causalties. Here’s the lead track — “Baby Lemonade” — from his second album, Barrett, and this rather different and raw take on the tune is from the Peel Sessions on February 24, 1970.

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