With the 2022 baseball season getting revved up, nailing the waiver wire and the players available are critical to beating out your league-mates in season-long formats.
Each week we will take a look at players who are rostered in fewer than 50% of Yahoo leagues and can help out your season-long squads. Remember, if you aren’t scouring the waiver wire, you are falling behind.
Joc Pederson, OF, San Francisco Giants
Roster Percentage: 49%
I guess the mercurial Joc Pederson is just going to go from winning team to winning team and keep making everyone better.
The former longtime Dodgers outfielder is now back in the NL West, but this time, he's a member of the San Francisco Giants. And he's still destroying the baseball and often leading off as part of his new team.
While many hitters are still finding their stride, Pederson has now bopped five homers already, and he's thrown a steal in the mix to boot. He launched 18 home runs in limited time last season.
With Mike Yastrzemski out currently due to COVID-19, Pederson appears to have found himself a home, and he's taking full advantage of it.
Jorge Lopez, RP, Baltimore Orioles
Roster Percentage: 48%
It's ok. It is strange. But the dude is straight throwing flames from the mound. Dialing his fastball up to 98 MPH, Lopez nabbed a save over the weekend and now has 13 strikeouts in nine innings pitched this season with a tidy 2.00 ERA and 1.11 WHIP.
Finding a consistent arm to provide saves is often a strange exercise in futility, but Lopez may be one to consider.
J.P. Crawford, SS, Seattle Mariners
Roster Percentage: 41%
While everyone complains about offense, J.P. Crawford seems to be taking shape as the Seattle Mariners leadoff hitter, even in this new dead-ball era. Last week, Crawford slammed two homers and drove in seven runs in a productive set of at-bats.
Now, Crawford isn't known for a ton of power. He hit only nine home runs in 619 at-bats last season, so you aren't drafting Crawford for power. But he did score 89 runs, and he has a 14.7% walk rate on the young season.
If you need some help in deeper leagues and a table-setter at the top of a strong lineup, peep Crawford.
Eric Lauer, SP, Milwaukee Brewers
Roster Percentage: 38%
I'll be very honest, at the start of this fantasy season, I assumed that southpaw Eric Lauer was simply keeping a rotation spot warm for Aaron Ashby. Or perhaps it would be Adrian Houser who would get bumped. Either way, I didn't have the utmost confidence that Lauer was going to be an arm that forced his way into the rotation conversation.
Boy, was I wrong.
Lauer struck out a career-best 13 batters against the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday night. And while some of that could be attributed to a generous strike zone from umpire Angel Hernandez, the reality is that Lauer posted an absurd 36% CSW rate.
On the season, spanning 16 1/3 innings pitched, Lauer has recorded 23 strikeouts and has a 2.20 ERA and 1.04 WHIP. Add him while you can.
Games in Coors Field This Week
Cincinnati Reds (3)