Head-to-Head Points League Strategy: Waiver Wire Week 11

June 2, 2012; Flushing, NY,USA; New York Mets starting pitcher R.A. Dickey (43) pitches during the first inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE

If I asked you who the highest scoring MLB player in the Fake Teams H2H Points League was, who would you guess? Justin Verlander? Ryan Braun? Miguel Cabrera? All good guesses.

How about Josh Hamilton? Hamilton would be a great guess since he has been a home run machine in 2012, is the clear favorite for AL MVP and has scored 242 points which is the most of any MLB hitter. But, you would still be wrong.

The correct answer? RA Dickey.

RA Dickey has scored 243 points in the scoring format that the Fake Teams H2H Points League is based on which is the most of any MLB player. I would imagine RA Dickey is the highest scoring player in a few other formats as well. In fact, Dickey has outscored Hamilton by 18 points in another points league I am in and by 5 in another one based on different scoring.

How is Dickey doing it? What's changed? It's hard to say. He is striking out batters at a career high rate and has a staggering 78/19 KBB which is unprecedented for a knuckleballer. His new found control has led to a MLB best 9-2 record and 11 quality starts in his 12 appearances this season. Actually, if you go back to the end of 2011, Dickey has had a quality start in 23 of his last 24 starts.

Want to know what is even more astonishing? Dickey is only owned in 86% of Yahoo! leagues. In all the years I have played fantasy baseball, I can without a doubt say that I have never seen the #1 overall player only owned in 86% of leagues. To be fair, in roto leagues, depending on scoring, it looks like Dickey is more of a Top 15 player than a #1 overall, but still ... 86%.

I can't imagine there is a Fake Teams reader in a league where Dickey is still available, but if you aren't sure whether he is owned or not, take 3 seconds out of your day to go check.

Week 11 Waiver Wire Advice Below:

All players in this post and pre/proceeding waiver wire posts are owned in less than 50% of Yahoo! leagues (I’ll do my best to call out some players owned in less than 10-20% of leagues as well, for you deep leaguers out there in Fake Teams land).

Catcher:

Russell Martin, New York Yankees – 33%

My Favorite Martin has been lighting up the scoreboard as of late with 4 HR in his last 10 games. In that time, he has 8 RBI, 5 R and a respectable 4/5 KBB. Is his .216 BA terrible? Yes. But you could do worse. JP Arencibia would be worse, for example.

Martin Maldonado, Milwaukee Brewers – 1%

(Insert hot hitting Milwaukee catcher here). The Brewers have to have gotten more offense from their catcher committee as a whole than any other MLB team. I’m not going to look it up or anything, but they just have to have. My Second Favorite Martin has seen a lot of ABs as of late with Jonathon Lucroy on the shelf and George Kottaras is dealing with a sore hamstring (who isn’t?). Maldonado is 8/34 with 10 RBI, 4 R and 3 HR thus far and should continue to see playing time with Lucroy on the mend.

Others to consider:

Ryan Doumit, Minnesota Twins – 26%, Wilin Rosario, Colorado Rockies – 20%, Rod Barajas, Pittsburgh Pirates – 5%

First base:

Logan Morrison, Miami Marlins – 48%

LoMo has to be better than this. I think? Right? He did have three hits with 2 2B in his return to the lineup on Sunday. Baby steps. Baby steps.

Gaby Sanchez, Miami Marlins – 17%

He’s back! Do with that info what you will. Yo Gaby Gaby was pretty darn solid in his career prior to 2012 and should see everyday ABs for the fish going forward.

Brandon Belt, San Francisco Giants – 16%

I know a lot of peeps in the fantasy community have been clamoring for Bochy to give Brandon Belt more playing time. It sounds as if Bochy is about to abide, so, yeah, those of you jacked about his .224 BA and 0 HR, umm… have at him.

Anthony Rizzo, Chicago Cubs – 8%

I’m thinking any day now. Today? Maybe. Tomorrow? Probably not.

Garrett Jones, Pittsburgh Pirates – 4%

Keep away from G. Jones in weekly leagues! But, in daily leagues, his splits vs. RHP are solid with a .266 BA and 7 HR in 128 ABs. Just do yourself a favor and avoid operating large machinery while searching for his current KBB. Yikes!

Others to consider:

Todd Helton, Colorado Rockies – 13%, Casey Kotchman, Cleveland Indians – 2%

Second base:

Neil Walker, Pittsburgh Pirates – 47%

Neil Walker Texas Ranger who plays for the Pittsburgh Pirates, in case that was confusing, is on fire in June batting .368 with 7 RBI and 7 R in his last 10 games, along with five multi-hit games in that time.

Aaron Hill, Arizona Diamondbacks – 36%

I play in pretty deep leagues for the most part so the idea that Aaron Hill and Neil Walker are available in over 50% of leagues blows my mind to really tiny little pieces. So, I guess what I’m saying is, I’d totally own Aaron Hill if I could. Guess how many more points he has scored than Howie Kendrick (86% owned)? Did you guess 40? Because that would be wrong. It’s 39.

Gordon Beckham, Chicago White Sox – 23%

This is more of an "Oops! My bad" for forgetting the Becks in last weeks post. While his power surge has shorted out as of late, he still has hits in four straight games and 3 R and 4 RBI in that time.

Marco Scutaro, Colorado Rockies – 22%

Darnit! So close to a Scutaro free post. Just own him already. Please?

Others to consider:

Darwin Barney, Chicago Cubs – 9%, Jamey Carroll, Minnesota Twins – 3%

Third base:

Will Middlebrooks, Boston Red Sox – 43%

Word on the street last week was that Kevin Youkilis was about to be shipped out of Beantown at any moment. Looks like the street was full of crap and Will Middlebrooks continues to spend a lot of time on the bench. But, I’d rather own Middlebrooks now before Youk is inevitably traded or hurt again rather than trying to bolt Usain style to your computer when that shizz goes down.

Steve Lombardozzi, Washington Nationals – 2%

Steve Lombardozzi has cooled off a bit as of late, but Davey seems to like the kid and keeps letting him bat leadoff. If that continues, you could do worse considering third base is shallower than one of those $9.99 plastic pools they sell at Toys R’ Us. Lombardozzi also qualifies at outfield.

Others to consider:

Ryan Roberts, Arizona Diamondbacks – 26%, Jerry Hairston Jr., LA Dodgers – 6%, Todd Frazier, Cincinnati Reds – 4%

Shortstop:

Ryan Theriot, San Francisco Giants – 8%

Remember the TV show "Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?" Of course you do. Remember when they would say, "The Loot," "The Crook," "The Warrant," in that kind of weird tone? That’s how I say Ryan’s last name when I am having conversations with people who know who Ryan Theriot is and understand that reference. "The Riot." Oh, umm … Theriot is hitting pretty well as of late in front of Melky, Panda and Posey and has 4 SB in his last 10 games.

Cliff Pennington, Oakland A’s – 3%

After going like a million ABs without a hit, Cliff Pennington now has eight hits in his last six games. Pennington plays on the worst offense in baseball and has no power, in fact, he doesn’t have much. What he does have is everyday ABs, a bit of a hot streak and a chance to steal a base or two, and, last I checked, Tulo is still injured and someone has to start at shortstop for you. Please come back Tulo! Please.

Others to consider:

Marco Scutaro, Colorado Rockies – 22%, Trevour Plouffe, Minnesota Twins – 14%

Outfield:

Carlos Lee, Houston Astros – 49%

Nobody does it like Carlos Lee! That was a play on "Nobody does it like Sarah Lee!" Not sure if it worked or not? Yes? No? No. Hmm… well, it’s kind of true. Few outfielder options have been more consistent than Lee over his career and dude straight up does not strike out. I’d bet dollars to donuts or even some sort of Sarah Lee cake/pastry that Lee is traded to a contender and racks up points down the stretch. Grab him now you lucky 51% you.

Ben Revere, Minnesota Twins – 8%

I don’t feel like making a Paul Revere/"The British are Coming!" reference. Instead I’ll make a Terminator 2: Judgment Day reference: "Hasta la vista, baby!" Ben Revere is stealing a ton of bases (6 in his last 10 games) and should be owned in more than 8% of leagues.

David DeJesus, Chicago Cubs – 6%

The only outfielders to have scored more runs than David DeJesus are owned in at least 75% of Yahoo! leagues. Sure, R is only worth 1 point in most leagues, but DeJesus is also well within the Top 40 scoring outfielders, making him a very solid bench option. Don’t mess with DeJesus! Unless messing with him means picking him up for your team. Then, yeah, go ahead and mess with him.

Norichika Aoki, Milwaukee Brewers – 4%

After hitting a walk-off home run last Thursday, Norichika Aoki’s teammates pied him and his translator in the face, which I find hilarious. HA! Pie! Anyways, Aoki is hitting .300 and batting leadoff for the Brew Crew darn near every day with 9 R in his last 10 games. What’s Aoki gotta do to get some love from ya?

Others to consider:

Colby Rasmus, Toronto Blue Jays – 42%, Denard Span, Minnesota Twins – 19%

Starting pitcher:

AJ Burnett, Pittsburgh Pirates - 45%

Since returning from the DL, AJ Burnett has only allowed more than 2 ER in two of his 10 starts. Not only that, but he is averaging about 6 K per game and has a very nice 6-2 record in that time. I don't have any puns. Burnett is pitching really good. That's all.

Trevor Bauer, Arizona Diamondbacks - 20%

According to the Diamondbacks, Trevor Bauer is pretty much only an injury in the rotation away from his MLB debut. Since about 12 injuries seem to happen every night this season, I would stash Bauer ASAP as he is probably the most exciting prospect in AAA.

Kevin Millwood, Seattle Mariners - 10%

Over the course of his last six starts, Kevin Millwood is 3-1 and has only given up more than 1 ER once. And, it's not as if he faced the Oakland A's six games in a row either. In fact, five of the six games were against the Rangers, Yankees, White Sox and the Rockies at Coors Field. This week he faces the Padres at Safeco. So, naturally ... he will probably get shelled.

Bruce Chen, Kansas City Royals - 7%

If you are looking for upside, you will want to look elsewhere. If your league rewards points for quality starts and that's what you are looking for, Bruce Chen is your man. Six of his last 10 starts have been of the quality variety and he carries a solid 1.23 WHIP and 53/16 KBB for the season. If you can avoid his starts on the road (5.50 road ERA) and stash him for home starts (3.54 ERA) you'll have no complaints. Overall, Chen is solid, and like my dad always says, "A Chen in the hand is worth two in the bush." OK. He doesn't say that very often.

Others to consider:

Jonathon Niese, New York Mets - 32%, Barry Zito, San Francisco Giants - 27%, Aaron Harang, San Diego Padres - 19%

Relief pitcher:

Grant Balfour, Oakland A's - 41%

Someone has to be the closer in Oakland.

Tom Wilhelmsen, Seattle Mariners - 29%

Remember last week when I said to grab Tom Wilhelmsen? Since then he has two more saves and Brandon League looks only a wee bit better than he did before the demotion. Wilhelmsen hasn't allowed a run in nine of his last 10 appearances. I don't see Tommy Boy losing the gig until he has a blowup, and right now that ain't happening.

Ryan Cook, Oakland A's - 26%

See Balfour, Grant above.

Others to consider:

Any relief pitcher currently in consideration for save opportunities. Saves = Points, y'all

Questions or comments? Hit me up down below. Peace out.

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