Dixon’s Picks: Fantasy Waiver Wire Pitchers for Week of June 9


Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

If you’re looking to stream some fantasy waiver wire pitchers, you’ve got to be willing to gamble a little more than normal this week. Now, to win a fantasy baseball league, you have to gamble a few times so I’m saying that you shouldn’t do it, but you need to be aware of the risks.

Before we do move on, let’s have a look at my running total this season after the weeks of Henderson Alvarez, David Phelps, and Jake Arrieta. [table id=819 /]

In a related story, we may not be seeing Phelps in a Dixon’s Picks for a while. Now, on to this week’s fantasy waiver wire pitchers.

  • Jason Vargas, Kansas City Royals — Probable Starts: Monday vs. New York Yankees, Sunday at Chicago White Sox

Of the three guys we’re going over this week, this is the guy I have the least confidence in — so I guess it only makes sense to start here. The reason for that is simple. In his last six outings, Jason Vargas has thrown five quality starts. For fantasy waiver wire pitchers, that’s gold, so why the lack of confidence?

Well, this was the one exception.

[table id=803 /]

That’s the same team he’ll be squaring off against this weekend, with a few minor differences.

  1. The game will be in Chicago, and US Cellular is a far more live yard than Kauffman Stadium.
  2. Jose Abreu did not play in that game. I’m guessing he’ll be out there Sunday.

This may not seem like a very hard sell at this point, but there are a few things that made me put Vargas here.

  1. Vargas is a veteran pitcher and hopefully, a veteran pitcher that can learn from his mistakes.
  2. I know they have plenty of veteran, professional hitters, but the Yankees offense just doesn’t scare me that much right now — especially in Kansas City.
  3. On that same note, I’ve said this before, but I always feel a lot better when the tougher match-up in a two-start week is the second match-up. By then, you h2h players know what you need and what you can and can’t risk. If the risk is just too great, don’t start him.

Like I said, this is one of the three I’m least sold on this week, but attentive players should be fine with Vargas.

[table id=816 /]

  • Josh Collmenter, Arizona Diamondbacks — Probable Starts: Monday vs. Houston Astros, Saturday at Los Angeles Dodgers

Baseball’s a funny game. I don’t think I ever would have predicted that in one week, I’d be recommending fantasy waiver wire pitchers going against the Yankees and Dodgers, but here we are.

I actually like Josh Collmenter a lot this week. I like both of those match-ups and love the way he’s pitching. The one fear is that both the Astros and Dodgers have had inconsistent offenses for much of the year.

By definition, someone inconsistent can come up with a great game and with the likes of Jon Singleton and George Springer in one offense, and Yasiel Puig, Hanley Ramirez, and Adrian Gonzalez in the other, there’s a lot of talent.

Still, Collmenter is a strike thrower, and that’s a really good way to beat offenses like that. Don’t beat yourself with the walks, make them get impatient, and thrive. The doubts are certainly there for me, but the confidence is bigger.

Collmenter is a good fantasy waiver wire pitcher this week.

[table id=817 /]

  • Ryan Vogelsong, San Francisco Giants — Probable Starts: Monday vs. Washington Nationals, Saturday vs. Colorado Rockies

In case you haven’t noticed, Ryan Vogelsong is having a nice bounce-back year after a 2013 filled with injuries and ineffectiveness. I covered his resurgence a few weeks ago, and nothing has really changed.

So really, this comes down to the match-ups. The Nationals scare me a little bit, as they’re hitting well since the return of Ryan Zimmerman. The Rockies still have plenty of good hitters, but will be without the services of Carlos Gonzalez and Nolan Arenado.

If the games were on the road, I wouldn’t feel quite as great. Honestly, he’d probably make it anyway this week, but I’d have similar confidence in Vogelsong that I do with Vargas.

But the fact that the games are in San Francisco makes a world of difference. That, combined with the hot run he’s having makes me feel good about giving Vogelsong a green light this week.

[table id=818 /]