Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Adley Rutschman Call-Up Worth the Wait

Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Adley Rutschman Call-Up Worth the Wait

Five-time high-stakes champ Shawn Childs helps you at the waiver wire to bolster your fantasy squad

Weekly Waiver Wire Report

Note: My waiver wire report digs a little deeper and is slanted toward high-stakes leagues (15 teams)

Catcher

Adley Rutschman

With Baltimore out of contention, fantasy owners want to know if they will call up Rutschman. Over 44 games at AA, he’s hitting .292 with 34 runs, 11 home runs, and 31 RBI over 31 at-bats. His play in June (.291/5/11 over at-bats) puts him on a path to reach AAA soon. Rutschman has an excellent walk rate (18.6), which tells me he’s ready for the big dance.

Reese McGuire

The hottest catcher over the past week is McGuire. He went 11-for-21 with four runs and two RBI. His AAA resume (.239 with 12 home runs and 66 RBI over 434 at-bats) shows more power, but McGuire can’t repeat his success in batting average for an extended period. McGuire only works as an at-bat filler in deep leagues. His window to start only lasts until Alejandro Kirk completes his rehab assignment (started on June 26th).

First Base

Josh Naylor

Over the first three and half months of the season, Naylor played his way off deep leagues after hitting .239 with 24 runs, five home runs, and 16 RBI. His bat turned the corner over his previous eight games (10-for-26 with four runs, two home runs, and five RBI). Naylor offers a contact hitter skill set while having the talent to his 20-plus home runs. The player pool remains weak in deep leagues, making Naylor viable at first base or outfield.

Second Base

Luis Arraez

For a fantasy owner owning an edge in power while searching for a batting average savor, Arraez fits the bill. He has a hit in his previous eight starts over nine games, leading to 13 hits in 34 at-bats with seven runs and six RBI. His lack of power and RBI production becomes a problem if started over too many weeks.

Andres Gimenez

The hot ride for Gimenez now stands at 11 games at AAA (16-for-46 with 12 runs, seven home runs, 18 RBI, and two steals). His failure risk remains tied to his high number of strikeouts over this span (16 – 34 over 139 plate appearances in the minors in 2021). Gimenez has improving power while offering speed if he can clean up his plate approach and earn a call-up to the majors.

Shortstop

Bobby Witt

Over his last 22 games at AA, Witt hit .326 with 16 runs, eight home runs, 17 RBI, and five stolen bases. His strikeout rate (24.2) improved slightly in June. Another injury to Adalberto Mondesi gives Witt a better window to reach the majors this summer.

Third Base

J.D. Davis

The long stint on the injured list for Davis appears to be getting closer to ending. The Mets moved him to the 60-day list this week, giving him a July 2nd return date at the earliest. He should begin a rehab assignment within the next 10 days. Davis should return after the All-Star break while being a free agent in about half of 12-team leagues.

Carter Kieboom

Since June 17th, Kieboom has nine hits over 31 at-bats with seven runs, two home runs, and five RBI. He still has work to do at AAA (.244 with five home runs and 20 RBI over 123 at-bats) to reach his success in 2019 at AAA (.303 with 16 home runs, 79 RBI, and five stolen bases over 412 at-bats). Only a player to follow in deep leagues if his bat stays hot.

Outfield

Lars Nootbaar

The Cardinals called up Nootbaar this week after playing well over 22 games at AAA (.329 with 17 runs, five home runs, and 17 RBI over 79 at-bats). His approach played well in college (13.7 percent) and his first year in the minors in 2019 (11.6 percent). St. Louis gave him a start in five straight games (4-for-17 with three RBI). On a dart in deep leagues if his bat picks up the pace.

David Dahl

The Rangers will have the services of Dahl over the next week. Over five games in his rehab assignment, he has eight hits in 21 at-bats with six runs, one home run, and seven RBI, highlighted by his previous two starts (6-for-10 with five runs, one home runs, and five RBI). Dahl underachieved earlier in the year, but he may be the best-looking kid on the block in deep formats this week at the outfield position.

Jeremy Kelenic

After getting abused by major league pitching and sent back to AAA with his tail between his legs, Kelenic regained his stroke and confidence over the past two weeks (16-for-50 with 15 runs, five home runs, 16 RBI, and four stolen bases. The Mariners should give him a second chance soon.

Starting Pitching

Tylor Megill

Over his first eight starts this year between AA and AAA, Megill posted a 3.35 ERA and 1.09 WHIP with 59 strikeouts over 40.1 innings. The Mets lost Joey Lucchesi for the season over the past week, creating a starting opportunity. Megill allowed two runs, five baserunners, and one home run over 4.1 innings with four strikeouts in his major league debut. His fastball sits in the mid-90s with a developing slider and changeup. Megill offers sneaky upside while looking more viable in 15-team leagues.

Matt Manning

Coming into 2021, Manning had elite prospect status after having a 3.04 ERA and 410 strikeouts over his first 331.2 innings in the minors. His season started at AAA with six disaster games (9.23 ERA and 1.67 WHIP over 26.1 innings) due to too many hits (36) and home runs (11) allowed. In his final start in the minors, he allowed two runs over six innings with eight strikeouts. Manning continued his momentum in his first two starts in Detroit (four runs and 13 base runners over 10.2 innings with four strikeouts) while serving up one home run. He has upside for sure, but fantasy owners need to walk a fine line with him early in his career.

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