We are a quarter of the way through the season, hard to believe I know. Now is the true time when owners need to make their move. Even though there is time left, teams in last place have to get out of the cellar soon or they’re stuck there. Although most people will try to make trades, the waiver wire is still a valuable source to rebuild a roster. Prospects will begin to get the call, while other players will emerge as well. Many people cut the cord on studs, and they will soon get back to their old ways. So keep searching the free agent market every day for those hidden gems. Here are some recent guys you need to either pickup or add to your watch list.
Josh Bell, ARZ 3B
Bell’s name has been floating around top 3rd basemen prospects for the last few years, but when he’s gotten his chance with the Orioles, he has flunked. They had enough of him and let him go on waivers to the Diamondbacks. He raked at AAA for them, and was just promoted this week. Kirk Gibson said that he will be their everyday 3rd basemen and he served him right by hitting a home run in his second game. Bell has unlimited potential so if he can finally put it together, he could be valuable all year long.
Xavier Avery, BAL OF
This dude can flat out fly. Although he only has 2 stolen bases so far in his 11 game stint, Henry makes an impact each game on the bases. He beats out infield singles, stretches hits into doubles, and scores plenty of runs. He has been hitting leadoff for Buck Showalter at a .256 average with 3 RBI’s and 7 runs scored. He does strike out quite a bit, but if he can cut that down, putting balls in play will get him on base. His OBP is .341 and could definitely be raised. He is a top prospect in Baltimore’s organization, and they should be sticking with him in the outfield even when Nolan Reimold returns.
Anthony Rizzo, CHC 1B
If it wasn’t for Bryan Lahair’s torrid start, Rizzo would be the Cubs every day 1st basemen. Currently in AAA through 44 games, he is hitting .355 with 16 HR’s and 43 RBI’s. Video game numbers right there. However when he got his chance with the Padres last season, he did brutal. So hopefully this time around, the numbers don’t plummet. The Cubs are considering bringing Rizzo up for interleague road play in June as a DH and then he would likely play 1st while LaHair would slide to the outfield for either Alfonso Soriano or David DeJesus. The clock is ticking on his call-up and it may be smart to grab him before he gets promoted.
Ryan Vogelsong, SF SP
If you’ve never heard Vogelsong’s story check it out here, it’s quite special. If it wasn’t for a lack of run support, Vogelsong could easily have 4-5 wins. But either way, he still is sporting a 2.27 ERA with a 1.17 WHIP. He has a little bit of a control issue, walking 20 guys so far, and not a high strikeout rate, just 34 in 47 innings, but he just gets the job done and that’s what matters most. After being an All-Star last season, Vogelsong seems to have picked up where he left off.
R.A. Dickey, NYM SP
Another amazing success story (check his E:60 video out), but his production this season makes him valuable once again. His knuckleball has been down right filthy this season. He is 6-1 on the hill for the surprisingly hot Mets and although his ERA is 3.45, but has 1.17 WHIP. On Tuesday night he had his best outing of the season. He struck out 11 while just giving up 1 run and walking zero batters in the win. He had an outstanding year last season, and I think he will keep this up again.
Roy Oswalt, FA SP
Rumor has it that Oswalt is signing with the Rangers quite soon. Neftali Feliz hit the DL on Monday and Oswalt can give them the same production. He was still very effective in Philadelphia last year, and with the Rangers being one of the best teams in the game, I see him dominating once again. I would add him as soon as possible before he is officially signed.
Hello, Waiver Wire!
This week was relatively quiet with injuries thankfully, and there was not a significant amount of players who kept slumping. Here’s my short list that can get cut.
Hiroki Kuroda – NYY SP, Henry Rodriguez – WAS RP, Cody Ross – BOS OF (DL) , Miguel Montero – ARZ C, Logan Morrison – MIA OF, Alexei Ramirez – CWS SS