Waiver Wire: The best DL stashes

Earlier this week, I received a delightful email from a reader named Tom (from a UK email address!), asking for/demanding a Fantasy DL review. Coupled with the massive amount of questions we've seen in chats, on Twitter and on our show asking about which players are worth a stash, I figured the time had come for a DL-themed waiver column.

Unfortunately for Tom, only one of the five players he asked about in the email made this column, as the others were all owned in too many leagues to merit a true waiver wire claim. Sorry, Tom. But thank you for the inspiration! And consider the following a liberal interpretation of your casual use of "etc." after those five players.

Roy Halladay , SP, Phillies

Most Added Players (as of 8/8)
Player % change
1. Danny Farquhar , RP, Mariners 27
2. Chris Johnson , 3B, Braves 24
3. Joe Kelly , RP, Cardinals 24
4. Alex Avila , C, Tigers 20
5. Danny Salazar , SP, Indians 19
6. Junior Lake , OF, Cubs 18
7. Mike Moustakas , 3B, Royals 18
8. Chad Gaudin , RP, Giants 18
9. Stephen Drew , SS, Red Sox 18
10. Wade Miley , SP, Diamondbacks 15

Current ownership: 51 percent
What's the latest?: Halladay, recovering from shoulder surgery, threw a five-inning bullpen session this week. There's no set timetable for his return, but Phillies manager Charlie Manuel has said he expects Halladay to pitch at some point this season.
When should I expect him back (optimistically)?: September.
What can he do for me when he returns?: Halladay could give a Fantasy team some nice late-season ERA and WHIP performances, which probably won't have a tremendous impact in Roto, but could -- coupled with the occasional win and handful of strikeouts -- put up some points in Head-to-Head leagues.
Worst case scenario: Halladay has discomfort in his shoulder -- or maybe tweaks an ankle in a rehab session -- and is shut down for 2013.
In what size league should I add him?: 14-team Roto/H2H formats and deeper.

Wandy Rodriguez , SP, Pirates

Current ownership: 48 percent
What's the latest?: Rodriguez's rehab progress has been kept close to the chest by the Pirates. From what we know, he is still only throwing from flat ground.
When should I expect him back (optimistically)?: Mid-September
What can he do for me when he returns?: Probably something similar to what Halladay can offer: ERA, WHIP and wins, but with fewer strikeouts. I'd be more reluctant to add Rodriguez than Halladay, as Halladay is coming back from surgery and should be good to go; Rodriguez is hoping to return to a pennant race and may still be bothered by the injury when he comes back.
Worst case scenario: Rodriguez experiences pain in his forearm/elbow during a throwing session and requires Tommy John surgery.
In what size league should I add him?: 14-team Roto/H2H formats and deeper.

Brett Anderson , SP, Athletics

Current ownership: 37 percent
What's the latest?: Anderson has been throwing simulated games and live batting practice ( Nate Freiman told MLB.com that Anderson's pitches were sharp and displaying movement earlier this week), but the A's aren't being very open about whether Anderson will return to the rotation or the bullpen. Anderson will throw batting practice again on Saturday.
When should I expect him back (optimistically)?: September as a starter, maybe mid/late August as a reliever.
What can he do for me when he returns?: If he's in the rotation, Anderson could bring about a strikeout per inning and help in ERA and WHIP. As a reliever, he's essentially Drew Smyly .
Worst case scenario: Anderson comes back as a reliever.
In what size league should I add him?: 14-team Roto/H2H formats and deeper. If there's any indication that he's coming back as a starter, I'd want him over both Halladay and Rodriguez and bump Anderson up to 12-team formats.

Matt Harrison , SP, Rangers; Ryan Vogelsong , SP, Giants

Current ownership: 25 percent and 24 percent, respectively
What's the latest?: Harrison is on a rehab assignment, with two starts left in the minors until he returns to the Rangers. Vogelsong is expected to pitch Friday for the Giants.
When should I expect them back (optimistically): Harrison by the middle of the month; Vogelsong by Friday.
What can they do for me when they return?: I thought it was fitting to group these two together, as they both could offer nice ratios while possibly getting you strikeouts (with Harrison having more potential than Volgelsong).They have similar upside, although Harrison could be the better Fantasy option.
Worst case scenario: Harrison has to shake off some rust for a few weeks; Vogelsong continues his ugly early season struggles (7.19 ERA, 1.73 WHIP).
In what size league should I add them?: For a team sitting about a game back of the playoffs, looking for an extra starter, I think there's a place for both of them in 12-team standard leagues. Caveat emptor: There's a significant gamble here (although that can really be true for any pitcher stash).

Ryan Ludwick , OF, Reds

Current ownership: 19 percent
What's the latest?: Ludwick is rehabbing after having shoulder surgery. The 35-year-old is hitting .094 in 10 rehab games (through Aug. 6), with one double and one home run.
When should I expect him back (optimistically)?: Next week.
What can he do for me when he returns?: Ludwick can normally be counted on for home runs and a decent (.250-.260) average. However, his lackluster rehab assignment probably has prospectors worried that either the team will extend his stay in the minors until he is back to form, or that he'll struggle when moved up to the majors. Right now, Ludwick can be counted on for maybe 7-9 home runs the rest of the way.
Worst case scenario: Ludwick announces that he has some shoulder pain and the Reds put him back on the DL.
In what size league should I add him?: His power potential makes him worthy of a DL stash in a 12-team Roto league. But prepare to cut him quickly if he carries this rehab slump over to the majors.

Cameron Maybin , OF, Padres

Current ownership: 18 percent
What's the latest?: Maybin, on the DL with a knee sprain -- which he suffered just days after a return from a wrist injury -- is 1 for 10 in his latest rehab stint (through Aug. 6) with one home run and no stolen bases.
When should I expect him back (optimistically)?: At some point in the next two weeks.
What can he do for me when he returns?: Maybin's batting average is prone to erratic swings -- he could hit anywhere from .230 to .280 and we'd just shrug and say, "OK." His real value comes in steals. But with zero so far in his five rehab games, there has to be concern that the speed may not be there when Maybin comes back.
Worst case scenario: Maybin returns, hits .180 and steals three bases through the end of the season.
In what size league should I add him?: If you're desperate for speed and can get a few points in the standings, then 14-team Roto and H2H formats and deeper.

Johan Santana , SP, Mets

Current ownership: 3 percent
What's the latest?: Santana recently told a radio station that he could throw off a mound in about a month. His agent had previously told the New York Post that Santana wants to be ready for the start of the 2014 season.
When should I expect him back (optimistically)?: April 2014.
What can he do for me when he returns?: This is Santana's second shoulder capsule surgery in three years, so there's a very good chance that he doesn't come back anywhere close to the same pitcher he once was. However, Santana -- a two-time Cy Young winner -- could still be better than a lot of pitchers out there if he can return at even 85 percent of his former self.
Worst case scenario: Santana encounters a series of setbacks in rehab and decides to retire.
In what size league should I add him?: 12-team Roto Dynasty formats, where you can keep 7-10 players at their FAAB price (in this case, Santana would be a $1 add for a team out of the race).

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