2011 MLB Fantasy Baseball Waiver Wire Gems: American League
Jason Kipnis, 2B, Cleveland Indians (36-percent owned in Yahoo, 78.9-percent in ESPN)
Current Stat Line: .279 AVG / 14 R / 6 HR / 11 RBI / 2 SB
Kipnis has never really projected as much of a power hitter, but he already has six home runs in 68 at-bats at the major league level! In 2010 he hit 10 HR in 314 at-bats for the Indians Double-A team. This year he hit 12 HR for Triple-A in 341 at-bats.
While you shouldn’t expect him to maintain a HR/FB rate of 37.5 percent going forward, he does fit nicely batting second for the Indians, and he should be a solid fantasy contributor the rest of the way.
Projection (remainder of season): .264 AVG / 24 R / 4 HR / 18 RBI / 4 SB
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B/3B, Toronto Blue Jays (31-percent owned in Yahoo, 82.3-percent in ESPN)
Current Stat Line: .283 AVG / 48 R / 10 HR / 32 RBI / 4 SB
Encarnacion has been on an absolute tear recently.
Since the All-Star break, he has hit .360/21/4/13/3 while hitting out of the five-spot in the Jays lineup. He is currently the hottest hitter on the Jays and is in the midst of a 11-game hit streak.
If he continues to hit behind Lind and Bautista, expect the production to continue.
Projection (remainder of season): .270 AVG / 22 R / 6 HR / 25 RBI / 2 SB
Casey Kotchman, 1B, Tampa Bay Rays (17-percent owned in Yahoo, 30.7-percent in ESPN)
Current Stat Line: .339 AVG / 34 R / 8 HR / 39 RBI / 1 SB
Kotchman has somehow managed to fly under the radar even though he has been hitting all year. He has hit above .300 every month, and his power numbers just started coming around as he has four home runs in his last 10 games.
He has batted everywhere in the order, but I think his recent power surge can be partly attributed to his permanent move the five-spot. In 105 AB while batting fifth this season, he has hit .371 with 4 HR.
Projection (remainder of season): .305 AVG / 20 R / 4 HR / 22 RBI / 0 SB
Mike Carp, 1B/OF, Seattle Mariners (8-percent owned in Yahoo, 28.3-percent in ESPN)
Current Stat Line: .322 AVG / 12 R / 4 HR / 21 RBI / 0 SB
I don’t think many people know what a beast this guy is. While playing for Tacoma he hit 50 HR over his last 660 AB during the 2010 and 2011 seasons. Please keep in mind that PCL parks are much different from the spacious Safco Field, but you just can’t ignore numbers like that.
He has reached base safely in every game since his recall on July 19th and has hit .372/12/4/21/0 during that time period.
I don’t expect the average to stick due to his .417 BABIP, but he looks like he is for real.
Projection (remainder of season): .265 AVG / 19 R / 6 HR / 24 RBI / 0 SB
Derek Holland, SP, Texas Rangers (47-percent owned in Yahoo, 48.2-percent in ESPN)
Current Stat Line: 10 W / 4 L / 111 K / 4.30 ERA / 1.41 WHIP
It’s unreal that a guy who has thrown four shutouts and pitches for an outstanding offensive club is less that 50-percent owned.
His inconsistency will keep him off of rosters, but his schedule the rest of the way looks fantastic. From September 5th through the 25th the Rangers play; @TB, OAK, CLE, @SEA, @OAK, SEA. Holland has thrown shutouts against Cleveland, Oakland, and Seattle this year.
Projection (remainder of season): 5 W / 3 L / 47 K / 3.45 ERA / 1.30WHIP
*All stats are current as of 8/13/11, 11:00 AM.