Excitement! Intrigue! Royalty! It’s a an all Royals edition of the deep league waiver wire which I am positive is the best thing you learned all day. A bad offense creates opportunities and has opened up playing time for two interesting names.
Johnny Giavotella | KC 2B | 3% Owned
Look who’s back for his seemingly eighth chance to run away with the starting second base job! He has seemingly been given an opportunity forever, but Giavotella has only racked up 380 career plate appearances. The Royals have predictably grown tired of Chris Getz and Elliot Johnson and have once again given Johnny the call. In the minors, Giavotella has made good contact, shown above average walk rates, and acceptable power from a middle infielder. He has also displayed some decent wheels, stealing as many as 26 bases back in 2009.
Unfortunately, the 26-year-old’s minor league skills have yet to translate to the Majors. His plate patience has disappeared, contact ability deteriorated and power non-existent. And to add salt to his wounds, his defense at second base has been poor according to UZR. But he still owns those decent offensive skills that if they could ever translate, would make him a fairly useful fantasy player for deep league owners. Ned Yost has shuffled his lineup several times this season, so if Giavotella gets hot, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him moved up to the two hole in the order to replace the OBP black hole Alcides Escobar.
Jarrod Dyson | KC OF | 7% Owned
As alluded to above, Yost likes to play the hot hand like the finicky fantasy owner who is always benching the slumping hitter and starting the hot one. That’s bad news for Lorenzo Cain owners and good news for Jarrod Dyson owners. After Cain opened the season in strong fashion, he wOBA’d .290 and .272 in May and June, respectively, opening the door for a rotation between he, Dyson and David Lough. But the thing with Dyson is that even if he doesn’t start, he will likely pinch run. And with his speed, that means many opportunities to rack up the thefts.
Of course, Dyson owns a career .297 wOBA, so when he returns to his slap hitting ways rather than continuing to exhibit his best Miguel Cabrera impression with that .278 ISO, he’ll probably find himself as the fourth outfielder again. But he already has 10 steals in just 56 plate appearances. That extrapolates to a ridiculous 107 swipes over 600 plate appearances, which is truly Billy Hamiltion-esque. As the overused phrase goes, if you have the need for speed, he’s your man.