Leauge Point Hitters: Waiver Yarn Pickups – Week 2
We’ll do this roundup of point leagues every week here at RotoBaller, with waiver wire targets and streaming pitchers rated based on the various rating systems from ESPN, Yahoo!, CBS and Fantrax.
Player values can vary wildly from platform to platform, so we’ll make sure to highlight where players are the best and worst. We know that points league players are underdogs and we’re here to help.
These waiver announcements are for the week of April 18-April 24 and affect players below 50% registered for ESPN, Yahoo! or Fantrax. Position eligibility is pulled from Fantrax and players are grouped by their most valuable fantasy position, using a hierarchy of: C > 2B > OF > 3B > 1B > SS. Statistics and standings are calculated using matches through Friday, April 15.
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Know your system
You know what I’m going to say, don’t you? You must report, as accurately as possible, a player’s performance under your particular rating system. Don’t be fooled into thinking you can just make rough adjustments in your head, banging guys with high on-base percentages and low strikeout rates. Every point, in every category, counts.
For example, ESPN and Fantrax are virtually identical in their batting rating and roster size. The only difference is that stolen bases are worth a point more on Fantrax and ESPN subtracts a point per strikeout. It’s the difference between Trea Turner being a top-five hitter and a top-25 hitter.
If your league uses standard settings, great! Go to page 94 and you can skip straight to the leaderboards. If you play with custom settings, you’ll be fine. Go back to page 43 and see below the rating systems of the four major platforms. I bet there’s a chance you’ll find your league score to be very similar to one of the four (well, not Yahoo!), even if that’s not the platform you’re on. actually play.
If you look above, you will probably find a suitable mirror for your own system. While every point counts, as long as it’s not seismic shifts, you can get away with “close enough” calls. THAT IS TO SAY. If everything is the same except for HBP (or something similar), you’re probably fine.
Waiver Yarn Ranking Charts
In addition to our global waiver thread rankings, once we get far enough into the season, we’ll also start doing a 14-day ranking, giving us a window into recent production. All charts are updated ahead of Saturday’s games, on stats and properties, and clicking on a chart will open a new page with an enlarged version.
*APR = Average Platform Ranking – the average platform ranking between ESPN, CBS, Yahoo, and Fantrax (standard point settings)
Before moving on to the positions, a quick word. Normally each week we will go position by position and group players according to “Must Adds”, “Can Adds” and “Desperate Adds”. But we’re less than two weeks into the season and while I usually advocate a lot of players at the bottom of your roster, now is not the time to quickly drop players who have (relatively) just been drafted.
My general batting advice for the start of the season is to stick with what you’ve drafted unless there are significant changes in their playing time and/or injuries. But also be on the lookout for players who have already been angered by one of your opponents who disregard this advice. That said, consider all of these groupings very loose until we have more solid performance data to base our decisions on.
Translation: Almost all players at this time of year will fall under the “Possible Additions” category, with most “Must Additions” being made up of players who probably should have already been drafted/not already dropped. And I don’t know what could have happened to your team that you are already in dire straits. That said, let’s take a few players.
- Jesus Aguilar, MIA
- Rowdy Tellez, MIL – The talent might make him a worthy upgrade to your bench, but he looks more like Tellez could be in a squad with Keston Hiura. This is the strong side but still; guys like that aren’t usually worth a permanent spot on the roster.
- Ji-Man Choi, TB – See Tellez, Rowdy.
- Eric Hosmer, SD – He usually holds decent value in the run leagues and is a good sideline, especially if your league penalizes strikeouts. But it’s also Eric Hosmer; don’t expect more and you will rarely be disappointed.
- Christian Walker, ARI – See Hosmer, Eric
- Albert Pujols, STL – To be clear, Pujols doesn’t start so much because he remembered how to hit RHP. It’s because the cardinals want to squeeze every last dollar of revenue out of him and don’t care about his divisions. But to be clear, you intrepid points player should only play it (if ever) when there’s a southpaw on the mound.
- Daniel Vogelbach, PIT – I don’t care if he’s inexplicably first at bat – he’s still Daniel Vogelbach and his spirit animal is still a beer league softball player.
- Adam Frazier, AES – Frazier has seemingly taken over as Seattle’s lead and at first looked like the points monster he’s been in past seasons. He should belong just about anywhere, especially in leagues with a strikeout penalty.
- Cesar Hernandez, WSH – Much like Frazier above, Hernandez gets a fair bump from his place at the top of Washington’s roster (and ahead of Juan Soto/Josh Bell) and will be especially valuable in the leagues with a takeout penalty.
- Jonathan Villar, CHC – Even when hot, Villar usually doesn’t have a great point profile.
- Owen Miller, CLE – Who? Well, Miller has a 7 APR among all batters and is currently starting at first base on presumptive starter Bobby Bradley. He’ll likely return to fantasy irrelevance soon, but Miller put in solid performances in the minors before a lackluster 202 PA in the majors last season. In addition, he is already eligible for several positions and will soon take first base.
- Luis Arraez, MIN – The best version of Arraez continues to profile as a points monster, but this idealized Luis has yet to show while staying healthy.
- Nicky Lopez, K.C.
- Nick Madrigal, CSC – Like Arraez, a healthy and productive Madrigal will perform very well under most point formats.
Things are already in mid-season shape in the hot corner. THAT IS TO SAY. Ice cold.
- Miguel Sano, MIN – Just like every season, Sano is rosterable but only if your league does not have a strikeout penalty. If you do, flee Sanó as quickly as possible.
- Gio Urshela, NYY
- Yandy Diaz, TB – You always wanted Eric Hosmer to be eligible for third base? Pick up Diaz and finally make those dreams come true.
- Jeremy Pena, HOU – If there’s a player I add wherever I can, it’s Peña. Maybe it’s my bias that persists, as I invested heavily in him for many draft and retention leagues, betting that the Houston wouldn’t quit Carlos Correa. Well, the Astros let him walk, further showing their confidence in Peña’s abilities, who dominated all levels of the minors. He plays every day and has a profile that should fill a favorable points line.
- Brandon Nimmo, NYM – He is currently under Covid19-IL but Nimmo should still be recovered. Once again, my prejudices are visible, because I have already publicly stated that this is an official SZN from Nimmo. Nimmo has a secure place at the top of a powerful New York formation, followed by Starling Marte, Francisco Lindor and Pete Alonso, and started the season in style. Thanks to his first 29 AP, he reduces .333 / .429 / .708, with 2 HR and a .482 wOBA. Please don’t make me talk about this all season, Joey Votto 2021 style – just give me a solid, and please find Nimmo.
- Connor Joe, COL – It looks like Joe is carving out a full-time role in Colorado, and players who do can usually get signed up. Maybe not in leagues with just three outfielders (CBS/Yahoo) but, at a minimum, Joe is probably worth a spot on the bench just to get him on the home run.
- Akil Baddoo, DET/Tommy Pham, CIN – These two shouldn’t be on the waiver thread and if so, they’re probably an upgrade down your roster unless your league is very shallow.
- Alejandro Kirk, TOR – In theory, Kirk has the profile to dominate in points, making lots of contacts, with a good walk rate and a tiny strikeout rate. And with Danny Jansen hitting the IL, he could finally get a run as an everyday player.
A big part of being worthy of a starter is simply getting the lion’s share of playing time for your team and some of the following currently seem to have that quality. This wraps up the catcher-hype part of today’s lineup.
- All added receivers are desperate additions. Now and forever.
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