Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Top 10 Pickups for MLB Week 8

Jason Catania@@JayCat11MLB Lead WriterMay 25, 2015

Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire: Top 10 Pickups for MLB Week 8

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    When it comes to top shortstop prospect Carlos Correa, it may be time to reach.
    When it comes to top shortstop prospect Carlos Correa, it may be time to reach.Stacy Revere/Getty Images

    A new week, another batch of waiver-wire additions just the way you like 'em: hot and fresh out of the oven.

    Some players mentioned last week—including Brandon Belt, Maikel Franco, James Paxton, Jake McGee, A.J. Ramos, Delino DeShields Jr., Mike Wright and Lance McCullers—are already owned in many leagues, but they remain quality pickups if they're available.

    In the interest of keeping the names new, though, let's avoid any repeats. Here are the top 10 waiver-wire pickups for Week 8.

Just Missed

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    With Tigers DH Victor Martinez out, look for Anthony Gose and fellow stolen base threat Anthony Gose to play more.
    With Tigers DH Victor Martinez out, look for Anthony Gose and fellow stolen base threat Anthony Gose to play more.Associated Press

    Rubby De La Rosa, SP, Arizona Diamondbacks (35.5 Percent Owned)

    Mike Bolsinger, SP/RP, Los Angeles Dodgers (36.4 Percent Owned)

    Rajai Davis, OF, Detroit Tigers (18.6 Percent Owned)

    Anthony Gose, OF, Detroit Tigers (28.8 Percent Owned)

    Shawn Tolleson, RP, Texas Rangers (19.1 Percent Owned)

    Brad Ziegler, RP, Arizona Diamondbacks (16.7 Percent Owned)

    Clay Buchholz, SP, Boston Red Sox (46.7 Percent Owned)

    Hector Santiago, SP/RP, Los Angeles Angels (47.2 Percent Owned)

    Brett Anderson, SP, Los Angeles Dodgers (9.2 Percent Owned)

    Roenis Elias, SP, Seattle Mariners (5.7 Percent Owned)

    Mike Foltynewicz, SP/RP, Atlanta Braves (10.9 Percent Owned)

    Enrique Burgos, RP, Arizona Diamondbacks (10.6 Percent Owned)

    Carson Smith, RP, Seattle Mariners (4.1 Percent Owned)

    Chris Young, SP/RP, Kansas City Royals (40.3 Percent Owned)

    Wilin Rosario, C/1B, Colorado Rockies (24.6 Percent Owned)

No. 10: Preston Tucker, OF, Houston Astros (2.6 Percent Owned)

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    Duane Burleson/Associated Press

    Called up to the Houston Astros in early May when George Springer went on the seven-day disabled list for a concussion, Preston Tucker is not a big-name prospect, but he has been a productive one.

    The 24-year-old former seventh-round draft choice owns a .296/.365/507 minor league slash line and topped 30 doubles and 20 homers each of the past two seasons. Plus, he was leading the minors in home runs and RBI at the time of his promotion this year, so he has power.

    Tucker showed as much with his first two big league homers this past week, off Joakim Soria and Anibal Sanchez, two darn good pitchers. And he has gone 12-for-37 (.324) with six extra-base hits and an impressive 6-to-5 strikeout-to-walk ratio so far.

    With Jake Marisnick having cooled off, Tucker could continue to see time in the Astros crowded outfield, and he has enough bat to matter as a potential OF 5 when he's hitting well—like he is now.

No. 9: Jung-Ho Kang, 3B/SS, Pittsburgh Pirates (15.5 Percent Owned)

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    Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press

    Jung-Ho Kang has been something of a mainstay on the "Just Missed" list of this column, but it's time he gets the full-write-up treatment.

    The 28-year-old former star of the Korean Baseball Organization, where he smashed 40 home runs last season, has been playing a lot more overall in his first year with the Pittsburgh Pirates. That includes getting time at both shortstop and third base, which gives him extra fantasy value for his dual eligibility.

    After a tough introduction to the majors in April—he played only 13 games—Kang has hit .318 with eight runs, two homers, five RBI and a pair of stolen bases in 74 May plate appearances (18 games).

    As long as Kang hits, he'll play, and he's hitting. Plus, if incumbent shortstop Jordy Mercer continues to scuffle with the stick (.454 OPS), Kang could take over the starting job for good. With the Pirates offense heating up, that makes him a capable starting shortstop in fantasy.

No. 8: Chase Anderson, SP, Arizona Diamondbacks (19.5 Percent Owned)

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    Laurence Kesterson/Associated Press

    Chase Anderson hasn't gotten much attention as a big leaguer yet—check that sub-20 percent ownership—but he's proving that he can pitch in The Show and that he might be more than a streaming starter for fantasy purposes.

    The 27-year-old has improved on his solid-but-unspectacular rookie numbers (4.01 ERA, 1.37 WHIP) to the tune of a 2.54 ERA and 1.03 WHIP. His strikeout rate is down from 8.3 per nine to just 6.2, but the right-hander has allowed just three runs in four May starts (26.1 IP).

    Anderson isn't this good, of course, but he sports a 3.27 FIP, so some of what he's doing is for real. While his next start—on Monday at the St. Louis Cardinals—isn't a great matchup, he has thrown so consistently well that he's worth using. At the least, he's certainly worth owning.

No. 7: Billy Burns, OF, Oakland Athletics (4.6 Percent Owned)

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    Steve Nesius/Associated Press

    The aptly named Billy Burns could be a sweet source of stolen bases going forward, especially now that he's hitting atop the Oakland Athletics lineup while Coco Crisp is out (again) with injury.

    In fact, the 25-year-old has been in that position each of his past eight games (seven starts) and has swiped five out of six bags in that time. This is coming from a guy who stole 74 and 54 bases in 2013 and 2014, respectively, while being caught just 13 times across both years.

    Burns has something of an idea at the plate, too, so he shouldn't be a nothing in batting average, but his power is nonexistent. (His surprising home run Sunday night was just his third as a pro!) This is a steals-only add, but it's one that could turn into 30-plus from here on out.

No. 6: Yasmany Tomas, 3B/OF, Arizona Diamondbacks (47.4 Percent Owned)

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    Matt York/Associated Press

    Yasmany Tomas has danced around the fringes of this space for weeks, often appearing among the "Just Missed," but the $68.5 million Cuban import is deserving of a top-10 ranking now that he's playing pretty much every day at third base for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

    Over the past 10 days in particular, the 24-year-old has been on the ball, going 15-for-36 (.417) over an eight-game hitting streak, which includes his first home run as a major leaguer. While the power was supposed to be Tomas' calling card, it hasn't been there just yet, but it is encouraging to see him hit for average in the meantime.

    There's a little worry that fellow rookie Jake Lamb could steal time at the hot corner or even get the gig back altogether once he's healthy, but Tomas likely has done enough to warrant a regular role in the lineup, even if it means moving to the outfield or shifting back and forth between there and third.

    Once the power comes—and it will—Tomas looks like a borderline starting fantasy third baseman, where he's now eligible going forward no matter where he plays.

No. 5: Javier Baez, 2B/SS, Chicago Cubs (9.2 Percent Owned)

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    Norm Hall/Getty Images

    After a rough spring in which he played (more like whiffed) his way off the 25-man roster, Javier Baez's sister, who was born with spina bifida, passed away. That understandably put Baez out of commission for a few weeks in April, since he was very close with Noely.

    In the interim, however, the Chicago Cubs switched shortstop prospect Addison Russell to second base, which was the position Baez was in line to grab.

    The good news for the 22-year-old is that he has been getting back on track at Triple-A, especially of late. While splitting his time between shortstop and second base, Baez has gone 20-for-48 (.417) over the past two weeks with 13 RBI and four home runs, including two Sunday. Perhaps most importantly, the strikeout rate, which has long been Baez's bugaboo—he whiffed an incredible 41.5 percent of the time as a rookie—is down to a reasonable 24.2 percent.

    It's tough to see how Baez fits in right now, but his power as well as his eligibility at both second base and shortstop make him a player to pick up now and see how it shakes out later. He could be back in Chicago at any time.

No. 4: Jon Singleton, 1B, Houston Astros (2.6 Percent Owned)

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    Stacy Revere/Getty Images

    The tale of Jon Singleton is similar to that of Javy Baez, at least on the field.

    The former top prospect showed massive power in the minors but also soaring strikeout rates, and the latter overshadowed the former once the 23-year-old made it to the Houston Astros last summer. Although he did mash 13 homers in just 362 plate appearances, Singleton also hit just .168, because he struck out 37.0 percent of the time as a rook.

    Back at Triple-A after he couldn't crack the Astros roster out of camp, Singleton is leading the minors in home runs (14) and RBI (47) in 42 games. He's been on a crazy tear in May, batting .330 with 10 long balls and 37 driven in just 23 contests.

    With Chris Carter still struggling to hit north of .170 as the starting first baseman in Houston, the door is open for Singleton's return to The Show. He's going to whiff, like, a lot, and the average might not be more than .240, but the power is enough to matter in all mixed leagues. If you need a boost in that area, grab him now, because he doesn't have anything more to prove in the minors.

No. 3: Ryan Howard, 1B, Philadelphia Phillies (33.6 Percent Owned)

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    Andrew Harnik/Associated Press

    Speaking of first basemen who hit for power and little else, it's worth pointing out that Ryan Howard actually has been swinging a hot stick.

    The 35-year-old, 12-year veteran looked lost early on—he was hitting just .175 with 15 strikeouts through his first 43 plate appearances in April—but Howard has turned it on since. For realz.

    In his past 30 games, he is hitting .303 with 16 runs, 10 homers and 21 RBI. 

    Obviously, Howard is nowhere near the fantasy beast he once was, but he can be a useful corner infielder for your team when he's going well. You might not like owning him, but you probably should if he's just sitting on the waiver wire. 

No. 2: Mike Napoli, 1B, Boston Red Sox (18.5 Percent Owned)

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    Michael Dwyer/Associated Press

    Like Ryan Howard, Mike Napoli is another non-sexy longtime big league veteran who endured a brutal beginning to 2015 before finally starting to put things together.

    Granted, the 33-year-old Napoli is hitting just .203 on the year, but he has gone 9-for-21 (.429) over the past week, while smacking five home runs and driving in 10 in just six games. That brings Napoli's season totals in those categories to eight and 21, proving that it's still early enough for a big week to push a player back on pace.

    The Boston Red Sox offense has been underperforming terribly as a whole, but if Napoli and Co. can get going, he still has the ability to hit .250 with 25 homers and 80 RBI for the season. That's a worthy corner infielder in all mixed formats.

No. 1: Carlos Correa, SS, Houston Astros (27.2 Percent Owned)

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    DG/Associated Press

    Carlos Correa is the only player in this week's top 10 without a drop of big league experience, so ranking him No. 1 is risky, especially since there's no definitive sign the Houston Astros are going to bring him up to the majors for the first time.

    But given the 20-year-old phenom's skill set and offensive potential—at the hard-to-fill shortstop position, no less—we'd rather recommend you add him now and wait for the inevitable than have another owner in your league beat you to the punch.

    The top overall take in 2012, Correa has bum-rushed his way to Triple-A this year, where he is slashing .288/.367/.481 with 12 runs, six extra-base hits (two homers), seven RBI and three stolen bases in his first dozen games.

    The Double-A digits (.385/.459/.726) were even more impressive, and the Astros, who need a shortstop with Jed Lowrie out until after the All-Star break, seemingly can't keep Correa down much longer.

    When the call-up happens, you'll want Correa, so go get him and then keep your fingers crossed that Houston's front office pulls the trigger.

    All ownership percentages courtesy of ESPN Fantasy Baseball. Players owned in more than 50 percent of leagues were not considered. Statistics are accurate through Sunday, May 25, and courtesy of MLB.comBaseball-Reference.com and FanGraphs unless otherwise noted.

    Need more fantasy baseball help? Come pepper me with your questions on Twitter today at 1 p.m. ET @JayCat11