Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Adds: Week 7
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 move through May.
Fernando Romero - Minnesota Twins (SP)
ESPN Ownership: 49.1%
With one of the most electric pitching arsenals you can dream up, Fernando Romero is doing his best job to stay in the big leagues for quite some time.
The precocious 23-year-old starter has all of 16 2/3 innings to his name, but they've been absolutely dynamite so far as he's whiffed 29.0% of batters on his way to a 0.54 ERA, 3.89 skill-interactive ERA (SIERA), and 24.3% fly-ball rate.
While it can be hard to invest in young hurlers, a peek into Romero's past proves this may be for real. Romero hasn't posted a strikeout rate under 18.0% in any stop, and since the start of 2016, he has yet to post a fly-ball rate of more than 30.0%. His 12.9% swinging-strike rate in the bigs shows his strikeouts are legit, too.
If you want to take on some risk with a starter, look at the young Romero.
Ryon Healy - Seattle Mariners (1B/3B)
ESPN Ownership: 48.6%
As someone working for a new boss, you always want to make a great impression right away. Ryon Healy was traded this offseason to the Seattle Mariners, and this relationship didn't get off to a glowing start thanks to an injury.
Now that he's back from this minor blip, Healy has been bombing away. Over 89 plate appearances, the slugger has ripped 7 homers and put up a .306 isolated power (ISO) and .381 weighted on-base average (wOBA).
For some corner help, snap up Healy immediately.
Jeremy Hellickson - Washington Nationals (SP)
ESPN Ownership: 34.6%
Stop me if you've heard this one before -- it's early on in the season, and Jeremy Hellickson is straight dealing.
In 2017, Hellickson, as a member of the Philadelphia Phillies, threw 30 innings with a 1.80 ERA, holding opposing batters to a .224 wOBA and 25.3% hard-hit rate. Then the wheels came off. The Helix finished with 164 innings pitched, a 5.43 ERA, 5.37 SIERA, and 43.8% fly-ball rate.
This season may be different. Over 32 2/3 innings, Hellickson has a 2.20 ERA, and he has brought his strikeout rate all the way up to a respectable 21.5%. That rate is buoyed by a 10.0% swinging-strike rate, which is up 1.7% from 2017, and 28.9% hard-hit rate.
It's fair to be reticent about Hellickson, but the advanced metrics show a pitcher who may be worth buying into.
Travis Jankowski - San Diego Padres (OF)
ESPN Ownership: 3.4%
This season, Jankowski has been good when he's been on the field. In 49 plate appearances with the big-league club, he has continued to show his strong walk rate, sitting at 12.2%, which has led to a very healthy .429 on-base percentage (OBP). He's also shown a little bit of pop, too, with a .512 slugging percentage and .407 wOBA.
Jankowski has surpassed 500 plate appearances only twice in his career, and those seem like a distant memory (2013 and 2015). But the skills are not in question, and with him manning the leadoff spot seven times in the last eight games, he's worth checking out.