Fantasy Baseball 2021: Players to Target on Waiver Wire for Week 1

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistApril 4, 2021

Fantasy Baseball 2021: Players to Target on Waiver Wire for Week 1

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    Ashley Landis/Associated Press

    Yermin Mercedes has been the hardest batter to get out during the first week of the 2021 MLB season.

    Mercedes started the Chicago White Sox's season 8-for-8 from the dish, which immediately landed him on fantasy baseball radars. At some point, Mercedes will cool off and pitchers will figure him out, but you should ride the hot hand for the time being.

    Mercedes should be the top waiver-wire addition for Week 1, but if he is not available, there are a few other hitters worth looking at. Geraldo Perdomo and Rowdy Tellez do not have Mercedes' numbers, but they are in positions that could help them thrive in the upcoming week.

Yermin Mercedes, C/DH, Chicago White Sox

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    Ashley Landis/Associated Press

    Mercedes has been the White Sox's surprise early answer to which player will step up in Eloy Jimenez's absence.

    The 28-year-old went 5-for-5 on Friday against the Los Angeles Angels and followed that up with a 3-for-4 showing Saturday. Mercedes drove in five runs, scored two of his own and belted his first home run in Saturday's loss.

    We should not expect a perfect game at the plate out of Mercedes on a nightly basis, but he is in a good position to chip in a base knock or two and land a few RBI.

    Mercedes batted eighth and sixth in his two appearances, and if he remains around there, he should have some RBI opportunities if Jose Abreu, Luis Robert and Yoan Moncada reach base.

    On top of the hot start, Mercedes should be the top waiver-wire addition since he faces the Seattle Mariners and Kansas City Royals in the next week. The Royals and Mariners combined to concede 27 runs in the first few days of the season.

Geraldo Perdomo, SS, Arizona

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    Rob Tringali/Associated Press

    Perdomo might be the answer to some of the early injuries that plagued the infield positions.

    The 21-year-old was called up Saturday by the Arizona Diamondbacks after Nick Ahmed was placed on the 10-day injured list.

    Perdomo made his debut as a pinch hitter against the San Diego Padres, but he should crack the starting lineup in the near future.

    Arizona used Josh VanMeter, Josh Rojas and Eduardo Escobar at second base, shortstop and third base on Saturday.

    If Perdomo receives starting time, he could be a nice fill-in at an infield position for fantasy players looking to replace Josh Donaldson, Luke Voit or even Ke'Bryan Hayes if his wrist injury is deemed serious.

    For now, Perdomo is a low-risk, high-reward waiver-wire add, and you many benefit from him playing at Coors Field from Tuesday-Thursday.

Rowdy Tellez, 1B, Toronto

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    Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press

    Tellez's waiver-wire intrigue comes from his matchup to start the week.

    The Toronto Blue Jays will play a three-game series against the Texas Rangers, who have five right-handed pitchers in their rotation. Tellez, a left-hander, should be in the lineup for all three games with the matchup in his favor.

    In 2020, Tellez hit all eight of his home runs against right-handed pitchers and had a better OPS and slugging percentage than he did against southpaws.

    The matchup is also promising for Tellez since the Rangers conceded 25 runs to the Kansas City Royals over two games. If the Rangers continue to struggle, Tellez may have one of next week's hotter bats.

    Toronto concludes the week with a four-game set against the Los Angeles Angels at its temporary home in Dunedin, Florida.

    The Angels only have two lefties who would start in Andrew Heaney and Jose Quintana, so if the Blue Jays avoid them, Tellez could be in position to pounce in those matchups as well.


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