After a bit of a hiatus, and slightly abbreviated a day later than what has been usual, here are my fantasy baseball waiver wire adds for this week.
Note: All stats are through June 17, with ownership rates as of early afternoon on June 18.
Vince Velasquez, SP, Philadelphia Phillies
In his last start against the Colorado Rockies, Velasquez went into the seventh inning without allowing a hit as he went 6.2 innings allowing two runs on one hit with six strikeouts and two walks. That was a nice rebound from allowing 10 runs (over 3.2 innings) to the Milwaukee Brewers in his previous start, as Velasquez continues to be up and down this year.
Velasquez has gone at least 5.2 innings in eight of his 14 starts, and he has allowed three runs or less nine times in the same number of starts where he's gone at least five innings. But the four pretty bad starts, with 24 earned runs allowed in 15 combined innings, have driven his ERA to 4.74.
Peripheral numbers (10.8 K/9, 3.2 BB/9, 3.54 FIP) paint a solid picture for Velasquez, and over a seven start stretch from April 29-June 2 he lower his ERA nearly two full points (5.70 to 3.82), with a 49:15 K/BB ratio (37.2 innings).
Fantasy owners will have to ride a bit of a wave with Velasquwez. But he has been good more often that not this year, over a large enough sample to draw some conclusions, and he should be owned in a lot more mixed leagues.
Yahoo! Ownership: 33% ESPN Ownership: 25.3%
Brandon Nimmo, OF, New York Mets
Since May 23 (24 games), Nimmo is hitting .300/.394/.689 (1.083 OPS) with eight home runs, 13 RBI, 18 runs scored and four stolen bases. He has mostly been hitting leadoff, but prior to Sunday he hit third (six times) or fifth (once) in six straight games.
Even when Yoenis Cespedes returns from a hip injury, which has been delayed some, Nimmo should see regular playing time. A .352 BABIP over his recent good stretch points to a regression there, but Nimmo is hitting for power with 17 of his 27 hits since May 23 going for extra bases.
Nimmo should already be owned in NL-only leagues. But mixed league owners should get on board, and at least ride a productive stretch that has gone on long enough to not be a fluke.
Yahoo! Ownership: 52% ESPN Ownership: 51.1%
Hector Rondon, RP, Houston Astros
Rondon has stepped into the closer role for the Astros recently, with four saves since the start of the month and no earned runs allowed in his last 13 appearances dating back to May 13. Overall this season he has a 1.38 ERA with 31 strikeouts and six walks over 29 appearances (26 innings).
Ken Giles and Chris Devenski are lingering at the back end of Houston's bullpen, and a trade for a closer seems very possible. But for now Rondon has seized save opportunities with no hiccups, and that makes him highly fantasy relevant pitching for a good team.
Yahoo! Ownership: 47% ESPN Ownership: 21%
Ian Kinsler, 2B, Los Angeles Angels
So far in June, Kinsler has six home runs and 10 RBI. Going back into the end of May (May 29), he is hitting .303 with a 1.019 OPS, seven home runs, six doubles and 13 RBI over his last 18 games. Overall Kinsler is still a drag in batting average this year (.220), but going back to his .236 mark last year that's nothing new.
Since arriving in the big leagues in 2006, Kinsler has been as reliable as it gets as a fantasy producer at second base. He has stolen at least 11 bases in all of those seasons (through 2017, of course), with a least 11 home runs in all but one of those seasons. From 2007-2017, Kinsler scored at least 85 runs in every season but one.
The peak of a 30-30 season with the Texas Rangers in 2011 isn't coming back at nearly 36 years old, but 28 home runs in 2016 and 22 home runs last year show the power is still there along with double-digit steals.
Kinsler is easily on pace for another 20 homer, 15-steal, 85-90 runs scored type season, with nine home runs, seven stolen bases and 30 runs scored thus far. If you can deal with the .220-.230 batting average, there's plenty to like here in mixed leagues and Kinsler should be owned far more.
Yahoo! Ownership: 54% ESPN Ownership: 56.6%