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It’s the final week of the fantasy baseball season which means you’re either locked in a playoff matchup or making your last stand in your points league. Either way, final week pickups are tricky but it’s more than possible to grab a big steal in the final week and get an added boost in your lineup. Aside from the usual hot waiver wire grabs, I’ve also included some pitchers who are making two starts this week against favorable matchups to give you an added pitching boost. We’ll also have a full pitcher streaming rundown for the final week coming up later today.
Matt Adams (Owned in 31% of Yahoo Leagues): I’ve been going on and on about Adams’ value in for weeks. How often can you grab a replacement starter in the final month of the season who had starting potential all season but was overlooked because the Cards lineup is stacked? With Allen Craig hurt, Matt Adams will finish out the season as the starting first baseman and I’d start him over most starting first basemen in the league. Since taking over for Craig, Adams has been red hot with a .318/.348/.652 line and seven home runs, 14 RBI, and 13 R over his last 18 games. He added another two homers and five runs batted in over the weekend against the Brewers. With the Cards still battling to lock up the NL Central, he’ll be in the lineup daily.
Billy Hamilton (42%): Don’t let the pinch runner role fool you. He may only have 14 at-bats in 10 games but he has hits in six of those with an RBI, two doubles, nine runs, and 12 SB. If you need SB or R help, he’s your guy with the Reds fighting for the NL Central crown.
Carlos Torres (8%): The scouting report on Torres is simple. Start him every time out, except against the Nats. In two starts against Washington, he’s given up 14 runs over seven innings. That means he’s only given 16 runs over his other 73.1 IP, giving him a spiffy ERA of 1.97 against all non-Nationals teams. With 28 K/9 BB over his last 25 IP, he’s a must-start in his final outing of the season on Friday against the Brewers.
Tyler Thornburg (5%): He put up a solid 3.04 ERA as a reliever but he’s 2-1 with a 1.25 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, and 26 K over six starts this season. He owns a .183 BAA over his last three starts out and is a must-start on Tuesday against a Braves lineup that ranks 23rd in offense in September and have more than locked down the NL East.
Pedro Strop (10%): Strop is as unnattractive as any Cubs closer but he’s taking over the ninth-inning role for the final week and could get you a couple of cheap saves. The Cubs may not win a lot but when they do it’s almost always by a tight margin.
Darin Ruf (15%): Ruf isn’t going to carry your team but, like Adams, he’s a guy who became a starter later in the season and is worth a pickup if you need help at first or in the outfield. Over his last 13 games, he’s batting .304 with two homers, two doubles, eight RBI, and six runs. He’s good for another homer or two in the final week.
Two-Start Pitcher Pickups:
Ubaldo Jimenez (61%): If he’s available in your league, you need to grab him. Ubaldo has a 1.65 ERA and 74 K over his last 10 starts. He’ll face the White Sox (24th in runs in September) on Tuesday and the Twins (19th in runs in September) on Sunday.
Jose Quintana (26%): Quintana has a strong 2.76 ERA and 38 K/11 BB over his last seven starts and will face the Blue Jays (20th in runs in September) and Royals (15th in runs in September) this week.
Bruce Chen (19%): Although he got roughed by the Tigers two starts ago, he’s allowed just two runs in each of his other three September starts and doesn’t have to face any Tigers-like lineups this week. He’ll face the Mariners (27th) on Tuesday and the White Sox (24th) on Sunday.
Yordano Ventura (6%): The highly-touted Royals prospect looked solid in his MLB debut, scattering a run and five hits over 5.2 IP. He’ll finish out his two-week season with starts a day ahead of Chen, against the Mariners (27th) and the White Sox (24th).
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