You’ve finished your drafts. You poured your heart and soul into each pick, and agonized over three different players in the 21st round. If you are anything like me, there are probably two or three guys on your roster that you just aren’t sure about. Either you took someone’s advice, they didn’t have a good Spring Training, or they just don’t look as good as they did on draft day. Then you start looking at the waiver wire.
You don’t want to look, but ooooooh, there’s a guy who is sitting out on the waiver wire that looks like a gold mine. Whether he will get more playing time due to injury, just ended the exhibition season hot or you’ve seen his name in many Fantasy articles. Do you make the move this early or do you jump right away after just a few days?
Personally, I believe in giving the guys I drafted some leash, and try not visit the waiver wire to make a move (or many moves) before the first few weeks of the season. On occasion there will be a guy who I had my eye on in March that starts out quickly that I will pounce on, but more often than not, I like to believe in the guys I used draft picks on and let them play out.
However, there are situations (injuries and closers imploding early), that causes you to have to move to the waiver wire right away. Drafting well is 50-percent of the battle, but your ability to find players that are going to succeed on the waiver wire is the other 50-percent. You can’t draft it and forget it in Fantasy Baseball.
I know you are all chomping at the bit to see who you should be looking at if you have a need on your roster this quickly. Be careful about making a move too quickly, but if you are ready to do the adds and drops, here are the players that you should be focused on. You can also follow me on Twitter @fightingchance.
Week 1 Waiver Wire Targets
Jean Segura, SS, Arizona Diamondbacks
A Fantasy darling after his 2013 rookie season, Segura hit 10 triples, 12 homers, and stole 44 bases that year. 2014 and 2015 were big disappointments as the batting average dropped big time, the power was nearly nonexistent, and the steals nearly went in half. Nearly a forgotten man, Segura was traded to Arizona this offseason with a chance to revive his Fantasy relevance.
I’m not sure that this is going to last, but through the first few games, Segura is batting leadoff and being very successful. He already has two multi-hit games and has clubbed his first home run. Leading off in a lineup that has some pop, is very Fantasy friendly for Segura owners.
I have a hard time believing that the exciting player from 2013 is gone, and Segura certainly has a chance to be a starting Fantasy shortstop. He is currently owned in only about 35-percent of leagues and that number is going to go up quickly. Hey, Troy Tulowitzki owners, he’s the perfect waiver wire complement to your roster as insurance to injury.
Socrates Brito, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks
They say with injury comes opportunity, and that is exactly the case for Socrates Brito. We all saw the terrible elbow injury that will likely end A.J. Pollack’s season, and now someone has to pick up the slack. Brito has had a very solid minor league career in which he has consistently hit around the .300 mark and stolen 20-35 bags.
Will this success translate to the Majors? He will have to deal with Chris Owings for a partial platoon at least at the beginning, but let’s face it, Owings can’t hit and if Brito has any success, that platoon should be short lived. He does carry some risk with a short track record, but Brito has a nice opportunity have some Fantasy success.
He sits second in the lineup right in front of Paul Goldschmidt, which is one of the best places to hit. Pitchers aren’t going to want to walk Brito to have to face Goldschmidt so Socrates should see plenty of pitches to hit. He’s only owned in 10-percent of leagues right now, and could be someone who could help your team.
Domingo Santana, OF, Milwaukee Brewers
One of the Brewers top prospects, Santana was left a starting spot when the Beer Makers shipped Khris Davis out of town. He had a solid Spring, and has started the season in the leadoff spot in Milwaukee. Santana does have a bit of a problem with the strikeout, so you have to be wary of that.
Santana does have the potential to hit 20 home runs, and you have to love the fact that he is leading off. He isn’t a huge speed guy, but could steal 10 bags and should score at least 70 runs if he’s able to stay in the top spot. Santana still has something to prove, and is only owned in about one-third of leagues right now.
Robert Stephenson, SP, Cincinnati Reds
A first round pick of the Reds in 2011, Stephenson has been tapped to start Thursday’s game against the Phillies. He will be replacing Homer Bailey who will miss at least the first two months rehabbing from Tommy John Surgery, so if he pitches well, Stephenson could be in the Reds rotation for a while.
Stephenson has great swing and miss stuff, but he also can be very wild and gets himself in trouble with walks. He really struggled this Spring, but the fact that the Reds are giving him this opportunity shows that they think he has the goods. You may want to see how he fares his first time out before grabbing him. However, if he pitches well, he will be a hot commodity on the waiver wire and he will be owned in far more than the three percent of leagues, as he is now.
Dalier Hinojosa, RP, Philadelphia Phillies
Once the Phillies traded Ken Giles away this offseason, it left a gaping hole in the back of their bullpen. At first it looked like Andrew Bailey would get the job, but he was shipped to the Minors. David Hernandez is another candidate, but he came in during the eighth inning on Monday and proceeded to give up the booty in a big way.
Manager Pete Mackanin said that Hinojosa would have saved the game if they had the lead. The 30-year-old finished the 2015 season great, and followed it up with a strong Spring. He is a bit of an unknown to most fans, but he has been consistently around a strikeout per inning. Hinojosa is a fastball pitcher, but also can mix in a change and a slider.
He is owned in less than five percent of leagues, so if you punted saves in your league drafts, give a serious look at Hinojosa, even on a rotten Phillies team.