Fantasy Baseball: RP/SP Strategy – Waiver Wire
BEAST DOME NATION.
Many of you play in Weekly Fantasy baseball leagues. Many of you also have spots for your starting pitchers, “SP” and for your Relief Pitchers, “RP.” Just because there is a RP slot, does not mean you have to put a closer or middle reliever there.
There is a strategy where if you play a starter who qualifies at relief, you will gain a huge edge in K’s, and Wins. You do take a good risk that you will move down in ERA, WHIP, and Saves. But sometimes you have to take the gamble if you need to make a big jump in the standings.
The best RP/SP options like Chris Sale and Matt Moore are long gone, but here is a list of some guys that can really help you out during the 2nd half of the season.
FELIX DOUBRONT – RP/SP – BOS
Stats as of 7/1: 4.54 ERA (8-4). 1.39 WHIP. 84 Ks in 85.1 INN.
IF Felix Doubront is on any waiver wire, add him immediately. Doubront is going through a bit of a rough patch right now, but you will be glad you stored him in the second half as he is a pitcher who can rack up Ks, and a lot of Wins playing for a Boston offense that will give him plenty of run support. Queen Felix has been a great surprise for all Red Sox fans this season, make sure he is not on your waiver wire.
JOSE QUINTANA – RP/SP – CWS
Stats as of 7/1: 2.29 ERA. (3-1). 1.07 WHIP. 29 Ks in 49.1 INN.
I talked about Quintana in the last waiver wire article, and I mentioned his start against the Yankees would be a crucial one determining where his value would go moving forward. After a rough 4 ER 1st INN, he settled down to only allow 2 ER the rest of the game and pitched a full 6 INN. He is a solid pitcher and the 4 run 1st was a fluke, more importantly his offense carried him to the victory. Quintana will get you a lot of Wins and help your ERA in the process.
FRANKLIN MORALES – RP/SP – BOS
Stats as of 7/1: 2.59 ERA (1-1) 1.10 WHIP. 44 Ks in 40 INN. (24 Ks in 18 INN as Starter.)
Morales is a very exciting pitcher who has yet to get challenged by a GREAT MLB offense. Yet he is still a pitcher that should be owned in a majority of leagues with his very high strikeout potential averaging 8/game in the last three starts. Morales has a lot of upside, and just like Doubront he too will be getting plenty of run support all season long.
ANDREW CASHNER – RP/SP – SD
Stats as of 7/1: 3.63 ERA. (3-3). 1.33 WHIP. 43 Ks in 34.2 INN.
Cashner could have been the future closer for the Padres. Instead they made him into a starter who can throw 100 MPH. He is a very dangerous fantasy player as he can potentially get double digit K games. In his debut he completely shutout the Astros and was holding a 1 Hitter for a majority of his game before giving up the big 2 run HR in the 7th INN. Yet he still recorded 9 Ks in 6.1 INN. Cashner will not get you a lot of W’s because of run support, but everything else will be great. At least until he proves the Astros offense was just the Astros offense.
MICHAEL FIERS – RP/SP – MIL
Stats as of 7/1: 2.70 ERA. (2-2). 1.11 WHIP. 31 Ks in 39.1 INN.
Fiers is making a lot of noise after shutting out the White Sox with 7 Ks in 7 INN, only to follow it up by shutting out the Diamond backs with 10 Ks in 6 INN. Those two starts are too good to ignore and his value becomes watch him very closely moving forward. You could take the risk and add him now if you have the roster space, it does help he plays the Cubs and Astros in the weird NL Central.
LUCAS HARRELL – RP/SP – HOU
Stats as of 7/1: 4.33 ERA. (7-6). 1.33 WHIP. 56 Ks in 97.2 INN.
Lucas has been pretty up and down this season, but recently he is starting to look great. In his last two starts he has thrown a CG shutout against a weak Padres offense that torched Wandy Rodriguez the day before, and a 9 K 1 ER performance against the Indians in 7 INN. Lucas has always had potential, and in his 4th season as a stater, this is his all or nothing moment.
DALLAS KEUCHEL – RP/SP – HOU
Stats as of 7/1: 1.35 ERA. (1-0). 1.15 WHIP. 8 Ks in 20 INN.
Dallas is another young gun the Astros have been hiding from us until recently. In his debut he held the Rangers to 1 ER in 6 INN, in Texas. He then threw a CG 1 ER performance against the Asrtos. To follow that up with 1 ER in 6 INN against the Padres. Impressive start for a pitcher who should stay up in the Bigs the rest of the season, the Astros are building their team for the future and they will see if Dallas can help out your fantasy team in the ERA and W categories.
FRANCISCO LIRIANO – RP/SP – MIN
Stats as of 7/1: 5.30 ERA. (2-7). 1.46 WHIP. 70 Ks in 71 INN.
Francisco is going through a re-birth and finally pitching like the man everyone was expecting after his amazing Spring. There is still always a lot of risk when taking Liriano, but he does look to be as safe as ever with an ERA of 1.36 in his last two starts. Both were against good offenses in the White Sox and Pirates. Look to see what he does Sunday against the Royals, consistency has always been his problem.
Feel Free to ask any Waiver Wire questions as we have only a week and a half left until the All-Star Break.