The second full week of June is upon us, and Craig Kimbrel and Dallas Keuchel have found homes. Both are work checking on in your fantasy baseball league, as an add and stash right now that could pay off nicely down the stretch.
We’re leaving Kimbrel and Keuchel off this week’s list, so here are five must-adds from your fantasy baseball waiver wire.
Note: All stats are through action in June 8.
5. Howie Kendrick, IF, Washington Nationals
While seeing nearly equal time at three positions (first base-17 games, second base-13 games, third base-14 games), Kendrick is hitting .325 with 10 home runs, 38 RBI and 29 runs scored this season. Over his last 11 games, he’s hitting .432 (1.207 OPS) with three home runs, 13 RBI and 10 runs scored.
Ryan Zimmerman (foot) still seems a long away from returning, so Kendrick is in line to see plenty of time at first base. He’s been sprinkled in at second base with Brian Dozier since Anthony Rendon returned from injury at the hot corner, so that isn’t going away either.
In Yahoo! leagues, Kendrick is even eligible as an outfielder. If he gets traded to a contender there’s risk of diminished playing time, but for right now Kendrick is a nice mixed league waiver wire addition.
Yahoo! Ownership: 51%
ESPN Ownership: 27%
4. Jay Bruce, OF, Philadelphia Phillies
Being traded to the Phillies has clearly agreed with Bruce, with four home runs and 11 RBI (8-for-18 overall) in five games for the team. He’ll surely cool off at some point, but other than last year with the New York Mets (nine home runs) Bruce has been one of the most consistent power hitters around going to his arrival in the big leagues with the Cincinnati Reds in 2008.
Playing 12 games at first base last year gives Bruce eligibility there in fantasy baseball leagues. He won’t be winning any Gold Gloves for his outfield work, but a depleted Phillies’ outfield assures Bruce a prominent spot in the lineup as long as he’s healthy. There’s an argument for riding what’s left of the hot streak right now, then selling high.
Yahoo! Ownership: 62%
ESPN Ownership: 35%
3. Addison Russell, 2B/SS, Chicago Cubs
Russell sat out again on Saturday due to a bruised hand, but it doesn’t seem like it’ll be a major issue. He has faded a bit lately, but over 25 games since returning from suspension he has four home runs, nine RBI and a .764 OPS while playing both middle infield spots.
Russell will never be a batting average asset, but he has shown some pop (21 home runs in 2016). Be sure to check his injury status, but even if he has to be stashed on the bench or in an IL spot for a bit he’s well worth adding in mixed leagues.
Yahoo! Ownership: 5%
ESPN Ownership: 4.9%
2. Griffin Canning, SP, Los Angeles Angels
Over seven starts for the Angels thus far (38.1 innings), Canning has a 3.52 ERA with a 42:10 K/BB ratio. Over his last four starts, he has a 23:4 K/BB ratio with a 2.25 ERA.
Canning next two starts look challenging, against the Los Angeles Dodgers and Tampa Bay Rays (most likely). But that will serve to keep his ownership rates down, and those than can and possibly not deploy him immediately can still swoop in.
Yahoo! Ownership: 45%
ESPN Ownership: 24.7%
1. Julio Teheran, SP, Atlanta Braves
Teheran carried an ERA north of 5.00 (5.35) into May, but since then has been excellent. After allowing two hits to the Miami Marlins Saturday night over six shutout innings, he has a 0.70 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP with a .135 opponent’s batting average over his last seven starts. His ERA for the season is now down to 3.03.
Teheran straddles the line of waiver wire eligibility, and a bad outing where he can’t find it always looms. But there haven’t been many, if any, pitchers better than him lately and there’s opportunity to add him.
Yahoo! Ownership: 61%
ESPN Ownership: 50.2%