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Waiver Worthy: Identifying Potential Replacements For Gary Sanchez

Sunday, April 9, 2017 7:09
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(Before It's News)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

While fantasy owners appear to have dodged a major blow with Trea Turner’s injury being minor, Gary Sanchez owners weren’t quite as lucky.  For now we don’t know the expected timetable for his biceps strain, but Bryan Hoch tweeted:

“Joe Girardi said that because the injury is to Gary Sanchez’s throwing arm, they will be cautious with his recovery.”

As with most all strains, there are different degrees.  While we await to find out the severity, fantasy owners should be preparing themselves for a few weeks absence.  We all know that the position is relatively shallow, even for those in single-catcher formats, so let’s take a quick look at a few options owned in less than 25% of ESPN leagues who could be worth adding:
Long-Term Replacement
Derek Norris – Tampa Bay Rays

It’s been a slow start, going 4-18, though he’s adding other statistics with 3 R, 4 RBI and 1 SB.  Remember he was a late addition to Tampa’s roster, after being released by the Nationals, so there has to be a little bit of patience.  Still we’d expect an improvement in his strikeout rate from a year ago (30.3%), he’s hitting the ball hard (38.5% Hard%) and he adds SB potential from a position you don’t generally get any.  As far as digging deep options go, he arguably has the highest upside to be a stabilizing option for the entirety of Sanchez’ absence.  Maybe his average is subpar, but even that isn’t a guarantee.

Ride ‘Em While He’s Hot
Geovany Soto – Chicago White Sox
He’s outproducing Omar Narvaez and adding some thump to a lineup that needs it, with 3 HR in his first 10 AB.  Of course those are his only three hits and we all know he’s not going to be able to maintain this type of pace.  He’s an ideal option to stream while he’s producing, but be prepared to move on to the next strong performer when things start to go south.

Buying For A Breakout
Austin Hedges – San Diego Padres
It’s been an abysmal start for Hedges, going 0-15.  At the same time the team has gotten off to a solid 3-3 start and 20-year old Luis Torrens (a Rule 5 selection) is his primary backup (though Christian Bethancourt could also see some time).  It means that the Padres are going to have some patience with Hedges, who isn’t as good as his Triple-A numbers from a year ago but should be primed for a “breakout” of sorts before long.  If you are willing to roll the dice, given his abysmal start there should be better days ahead.

Sources – Fangraphs, ESPN,


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