Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Adds: Week 4
The waiver wire has plenty of gems available for the taking, so let's try to get a leg up on our fellow league members and make some moves where needed.
The four players below are all owned in fewer than 50% of ESPN leagues and could give your squad a shot in the arm as we get into late April.
Aaron Hicks - New York Yankees (OF)
ESPN Ownership: 48.2%
After returning to the New York Yankees following a short stint on the disabled list, Aaron Hicks has helped the Yanks up their game. In the last week, the Yankees are second in team wOBA (.385), and Hicks has been a big part of that.
Over 38 plate appearances this season, Hicks has showcased equivalent walk and strikeout rates (18.4%) -- all while posting a .937 OPS. And, as an added bonus, Hicks manned the leadoff spot in yesterday's contest.
He blasted his way to a robust .363 wOBA in 2017, and he can help your fantasy team right now.
Michael Brantley - Cleveland Indians (OF)
ESPN Ownership: 42.8%
The skill set really has never been in question with Michael Brantley -- it's always been about his health. In 2016, Brantley recorded only 43 plate appearances at the big-league level, and he played a little more than half a season in 2017 with 375 plate appearances.
The good news? Those were pretty productive trips to the dish. Last year, Brantley popped 9 homers with 11 steals on his way to a .342 wOBA, and so far in 2018, he's blasted his way to a .384 wOBA over 48 plate appearances.
Manning the four or five spot in each of his 11 games this year, Brantley occupies a prime spot in the batting order for a good Cleveland Indians offense, and if he can maintain his health, he can be a big contributor to fantasy teams.
Chris Devenski - Houston Astros (RP)
ESPN Ownership: 32.3%
Skills pay the bills, kids.
Chris Devenski has been a beast in his reliever role. Last season, Devenski whiffed 31.7% of hitters on his way to 100 strikeouts over 80 2/3 innings pitched, and he also chipped in 8 wins.
But what Devenski has added in recent weeks is that ever-elusive save category as he now owns two of them in 2018. While it's unclear if he's officially the closer -- he did get the last save chance for the Houston Astros -- Devenski has shown to be solid in any capacity. He logged a 2.68 ERA and 0.94 WHIP in 2017, and if he can solidify himself as the closer for one of the best teams in baseball, he could be an elite fantasy reliever.
Jack Flaherty - St. Louis Cardinals (SP)
ESPN Ownership: 14.3%
Flaherty is the next big name waiting in the St. Louis Cardinals organization, and the kid can throw the baseball. Over 148 2/3 minor league innings last year, Flaherty struck out 24.6% of hitters with a 2.18 ERA.
The young right-hander occupied Wainwright's spot earlier in 2018, and he dazzled the Milwaukee Brewers with nine strikeouts over five innings in hitter-friendly Miller Park. It looks like that first outing was no fluke as he's continued shoving the baseball with a 29.0% strikeout rate in the minors.
It feels like it's simply a matter of time before Flaherty is in a mainstay in St. Louis, and you need to scoop him up while you can.