The first full week of May is upon us already, so fantasy baseball owners are either looking to reload or stay toward the top of the standings.
Here are our five must-adds from your fantasy baseball waiver wire for this week.
Note: Stats are through action on May 5.
5. Chris Davis, 1B, Baltimore Orioles
Since his funk ended, I’ve been wanting to put Davis on this list and now he’s got the sample size to make him worthy. Since April 15 (13 games), despite going hitless in back-to-back games, he is hitting .278/.333/.556 with three home runs, seven RBI and six runs scored.
Davis’ peak power days are not coming back, but he’s useful in AL-only leagues and mixed league relevance may not be far behind.
Yahoo! Ownership: 2%
ESPN Ownership: 1.4%
4. Anthony DeSclafani, SP, Cincinnati Reds
Over his last three starts (all on the road), DeSclafani has a 0.51 ERA, a 0.79 WHIP, 20 strikeouts and five walks over 17.2 innings. His fastball velocity is his career-best right now, and his next two starts are set to be against the San Francisco Giants and their feeble offense (including Monday).
DeSclafani is most importantly healthy, and some peripherals show he deserved better than a 4.93 ERA in his 21 starts last year. He won’t keep his recent run fully going, especially since he won’t be able to avoid pitching in a hitter-friendly home park. But pitching-starved fantasy owners have to consider adding DeSclafani.
Yahoo! Ownership: 46%
ESPN Ownership: 18.2%
3. Alex Verdugo, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers
With A.J. Pollock out for awhile with an elbow infection, Verdugo has moved into a starting role in the Dodgers’ outfield. He’s 5-for-16 over his last four games, with two runs scored, an RBI and a stolen base, and overall this season he has a .329/.360/.576 slash-line with four home runs and 17 RBI.
Simply being in a good Dodgers’ lineup nearly every day puts Verdugo on the fantasy radar, and he’s also been producing. His ownership rates are primed to rise quickly, so now’s the time for mixed league owners to get on board.
Yahoo! Ownership: 29%
ESPN Ownership: 24.2%
2. Martin Perez, SP, Minnesota Twins
Due to early season off days, Perez started the season in the Twins’ bullpen. But he moved eventually into the rotation as expected, and he’s got a 2.08 ERA and an 18:5 K/BB ratio over 26 innings as he has won three in a row. He’s throwing harder than he ever has, as the Twins’ analytics staff instituted a plan for him, with run support and a good defense behind him.
Perez is an interesting flier in mixed leagues, with the chance to become much more.
Yahoo! Ownership: 35%
ESPN Ownership: 17.4%
1. Nick Senzel, 2B/3B/OF, Cincinnati Reds
Senzel was called up for his major league debut last Friday, and while his early numbers aren’t outstanding (.185, one home run), he was drawn four walks and would have two home runs if not for a wall-climbing catch from Giants’ center fielder Kevin Pillar.
Senzel is eligible at third base (Yahoo! leagues) and second base (ESPN leagues), with outfield eligibility to come as he has only played center field since being called up. The Reds are going to give him a spot in the every day lineup as they’ve made some changes to their outfield, so run don’t walk to see if Senzel is available in your league.
Yahoo! Ownership: 69%
ESPN Ownership: 58.6%