Lonnie Chisenhall & Andrew Werner: Deep League WW

It’s time for another day of deep league waiver wire gems. If you’re in need of a third baseman or corner infielder or desperate for pitching, read on!

Lonnie Chisenhall | CLE 3B | CBS 12% Owned

In late June, Chisenhall fractured a bone in his right forearm, which required surgery and kept him out for 2 months. He finally returned on Monday and celebrated by launching his fourth home run of the season. The 23-year old was always considered a pretty good prospect, though his minor league numbers were not worth getting too excited about. He doesn’t walk all that much and has failed to post strong BABIP marks in the minors, leading one to wonder what those might translate to in the Majors.

That said, he does have enough redeeming qualities to be worth considering adding him for the stretch run. He makes pretty good contact and has shown 20 home run power in the past. He should be in the Cleveland lineup most days, though will likely sit against lefties, like he did yesterday as the team faced Matt Harrison. The low historical BABIP marks will make it difficult for him to be an asset in batting average. However, good contact and some power could help him be a neutral in the category and sometimes that in itself is a win from a freely available player.

Andrew Werner | SD SP | 11% Owned

Werner is a pitcher who admittedly I had never heard of before his call up. His 5.79 Triple-A ERA makes you wonder why he was even recalled in the first place, but if we look a little deeper, we find an intriguing skill set. He doesn’t throw hard, and in fact his fastball has averaged just 88.0 miles per hour, a pitch that PITCHf/x labels a sinker. He has relied on his change-up nearly 30% of the time. What that sinker and change-up combination does do though is induce tons of ground balls. Amazingly, against left-handed batters he has thrown 88 of those two types of pitches and every one of them put into play has resulted in a ground ball. Yes, that means he has a 100% GB% when he has thrown either his sinker or change-up to a left-handed hitter. He hasn’t been as good against right-handers, but plenty good enough. Overall, his GB% sits at nearly 62% and in the minors he was around 60% at every level as well.

Usually the downside for sinkerballers is a low strikeout rate. But while Werner hasn’t exactly posted dominating K/9 rates, they have been respectable, with rates near 8.0 at his two stops this year. So far in the Majors, that mark has jumped even higher, but an unremarkable SwStk% suggests that will decline. Still, a rate between 6.0 and 7.0 with that GB% is excellent. He has also been a strike throwing machine, showing excellent control in the minors and seeing that carry over to the Padres with a fantastic F-Strike%. Werner’s next start comes at home versus Colorado, a team that is terrible on the road. The following start should come against the Giants in San Francisco and then a last start at home against those same Giants. I’m not sure if you could possibly find a better remaining trio of matchups, making Werner a guy even shallower leaguers can consider adding.

Print This Post

Mike Podhorzer is the 2015 Fantasy Sports Writers Association Baseball Writer of the Year. He produces player projections using his own forecasting system and is the author of the eBook Projecting X 2.0: How to Forecast Baseball Player Performance, which teaches you how to project players yourself. His projections helped him win the inaugural 2013 Tout Wars mixed draft league. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikePodhorzer and contact him via email.

newest oldest most voted

Since I just picked up Mr. Werner yesterday for my team currently tied for first I certainly hope you are right!