Let’s get right to work this week, as I’m sure by the time I finish writing this I’ll have at least one more roster hole to fill in my deep leagues (sigh, that Lucas Sims/Sam Coonrod era on one of my NL-only teams didn’t last long). Once again there’s probably not much to get excited about on the average deep-league waiver wire, but once again that won’t stop up from trying to come up with a few names that could be of interest to those of us in NL-only, AL-only, and other deep leagues.
LaMont Wade. I wish I’d picked Wade up in a deep league or two, as he was recalled by the Giants on Friday and looks to be in line for somewhat regular playing time with Brandon Belt hitting the IL (Wade has started 11 games at first and 17 in the outfield this year). Wade is 27 and may not be a hyped prospect, but he’s been really good this year when given the chance – in 89 at bats, he’s hitting .270 with 5 homers, 13 RBI, 15 runs scored, and 2 steals.
Tylor Megill/Jared Eickhoff. Megill’s CBS ownership quickly went from 0 to 6% upon his call up last week, when he started for the (still) injury plagued Mets against Atlanta, going 4.1 innings and giving up two runs with four strikeouts. He’s scheduled to start again on Tuesday, though even if he pitches well it might be a short stay in the majors for now, assuming Marcus Stroman’s cooperates. Megill is 25 now (the Mets drafted him in the 8th round in 2018) and his career minor league numbers are solid if not spectacular: 3.41 ERA/1.18 WHIP in 140 innings, with 187 Ks and a .218 batting average against. Meanwhile, Eickhoff is also in the picture, perhaps as the Mets’ fifth starter for a while with Joey Lucchesi down for the count and Carlos Carrasco still not ready to return. Eickhoff has been pretty atrocious since his great 2015-2016 with the Phillies, and didn’t pitch at all in the majors last year. He’s a deep league streamer at best.
Chad Kuhl. Speaking of deep league streamers at best, is throwing Chad Kuhl into your active lineup a great idea in any size league? Probably not, and to drive that point home he’s scheduled to start for the Pirates in Colorado on Tuesday. I’m still going to mention him, though, given the continued lack of starting pitching depth for many teams (both real life MLB and fantasy) as well as the fact that as I write this he’s put two nice starts in a row together, allowing just one run over six innings in each (against Cleveland and St. Louis). He also walked four in those twelve innings and struck out just six, which would suggest that similar great starts will be few and far between, but we’re talking about desperation mode here.
Travis Jankowski. Jankowski is now a Phillie, and anyone who’s been paying even a little attention is aware that the Phillies have been dealing with major outfield problems since day one of the season. He had one of those games last week that could well end up being 90% of his production for the season, with three hits including a homer, three RBI, and a steal for good measure. Jankowski has never shown much at the MLB level in terms of actual hitting skill or power, but many of us ultra deep leaguers are familiar with him as a potential source of speed when we’re desperately looking for some (the last time he had semi regular playing time was 2018 with San Diego, where he stole 24 bases in 117 games).
Ryan O’Hearn. O’Hearn has been seeing time at DH for the Royals after the lastest Adalberto Mondesi IL stint, batting cleanup no less. There’s never going to be much consistency here, but he’s a guy who can have a big day at the plate in between the 0-4s, which we’ve already seen evidence of: in his first two games since his recall he had four hits, two homers, and five RBI (and yes, the following day he had one of those 0-4s I mentioned). His ownership doubled from 1 to 2% last week, and I suspect it’ll be a tick higher than that by the time this posts.
Luis Torrens. If you haven’t been paying much attention to the catching situation in Seattle – and even in a deep league, who would want to? – you may have missed Torrens’ recent hot streak/power surge. I was a bit confused to see both Torrens and Tom Murphy in the Seattle starting lineup the other day, until I realized that Torrens has actually been DH’ing for the Mariners. His batting average remains atrocious, but the playing time is there for the moment if you’re looking to catch lighting in a bottle in hopes that the homers and RBI will keep coming.
Nicky Lopez. Lopez keeps coming up as the most productive player available as a free agent in a couple of my deep-ish leagues, which may not be saying much, but would lead one to believe that he’s better than a hole in your lineup. He’ll never be of use in the power categories, but he has scored 32 runs this year for the Royals. Perhaps of even more interest is the fact that he’s stolen seven bases, which is definitely better than a hole in your lineup.
Colin McHugh. I keep looking at McHugh in my deep leagues where he’s available and thinking maybe I should throw him in a lineup but am afraid he’ll start blowing up the minute I do. I already have more Tampa Bay relievers in many of those lineups than I probably need, but at this point I’m wishing I’d just grabbed McHugh weeks ago in a couple leagues as all he’s done is pitch well, with a ton of Ks (44 in 30.2 innings). I don’t like to chase wins, but McHugh did pick up his second on the season last week, and it’s not a stretch to think he could vulture a few more given the ways he’s being used recently.