After a short slate of games on Monday, the news is light. We persevere to find you some waiver nuggets for your pleasure.
Dexter Fowler, Colorado Rockies (7% owned)
First, the flaws in the pro-Fowler case. He’s still striking out too much (25.8%), still having trouble against right-handed pitching (.537 OPS this year, .662 career), and still in a crowded outfield. The thing is, in many a deep league you still need to have a bench. And on that bench you could maybe use a bat that acts predictably in certain situations. Well, Fowler is a cheap bat that you can easily slot in against lefties. Look at his current OPS (.980), career OPS (.880) and career minor league OPS (.843) against lefties and you’ll see a pattern. Add in that he actually had a higher OPS against righties in the minor leagues (.859) and you have your ‘upside.’ In daily-lineup leagues, Fowler is a useful bench bat still, and could be more later.
Will Ohman, Baltimore Orioles (4% owned)
The merry-go-round in Baltimore went around another turn when Alfredo “Shutdown Sauce” Simon had to shutdown his sauce with a hammy injury. Incumbent closer Mike Gonzalez is at least still two weeks away from returning, and fellow Candidate Koji Uehara had to join Simon on the DL with some arm issues. No one wants to step forward and save this island. No matter, the O’s announced that saves would go to Ohman in the interim, and those desperate for saves will be forgiven for picking him up. The lefty is better suited to be a LOOGY (3.57 xFIP versus lefties, 4.87 xFIP versus righties) and his career ground ball percentage (39.9%) suggests that despite his good FIP (2.71) that home run rate (0) won’t last and it’s the xFIP (3.83) that better predicts his success. It’s okay. It’s only for a couple weeks and maybe four or five saves at best. They still count.
Reid Brignac, Tampa Bay Rays, (2% owned)
You, like me, might have some barely startable flotsam or jetsam in one of your MI spots currently. Well, consider Brignac, who looks like he might be getting the lion’s share of at-bats at second base in Tampa. The respective UZR numbers for the possibilities at the position are too small to cite, but as the chunk of his defensive experience at shortstop is a little more recent than Ben Zobrist‘s, it might make sense that his infield D is a little better. Or perhaps Brignac is not comfortable in the outfield and Zobrist is a jack of all trades. In the end, though, it’s less about his competition at second base – whiff machine Sean Rodriguez (41.4% K%) most likely – and more about the fact that there are a paucity of options in right field that causes manager Joel Maddon to put Brignac in the lineup. Gabe Kapler is semi-decent against lefties, but is better served as a backup OF. Rodriguez is also playing against lefties and doing pretty well this year (.897 OPS). But against righties, it looks like Brignac is getting some playing time. Which makes him interesting, because he’s always been okay against righties – see his pop (.186 career minor league ISO) and overall numbers (career .799 OPS) against pitchers of that handedness.