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USATSI

Offense remains hard to find, and while we're hoping that won't be the case forever, as long as it is, we're going to be chasing it on the waiver wire. Rowdy Tellez was the flavor of last week when he crushed a two-homer game, and Guardians outfielder/first baseman Josh Naylor is next in line after he pulled the trick Monday against the White Sox

If you got extra Fantasy points for dramatics, Naylor's performance Monday was especially impressive. He hit his first homer in the ninth inning off White Sox closer Liam Hendriks, a grand slam that he clubbed 421 feet, a 110.1 mph shot off a 99 mph fastball. He followed that up with the game-winner in the top of the 11th, a three-run shot he only hit 101.1 mph. Naylor went 3 for 5 in the game – he added a double – and has been red hot since coming off the IL to start his season. 

And it's not necessarily looking like a fluke. While expected stats are somewhat misleading these days given the environmental context, Naylor's still suggests he's earning a lot of what he's doing, with a .313 xBA and .584 xSLG, per BaseballSavant.com's StatCast metrics. He has a career-best 48% hard-hit rate and ranks above average in average exit velocity and barrel rate – combine that with a 13.7% strikeout rate, and you can see why he's enjoying so much success, with a .338/.370/.574 slash line in 73 plate appearances.

Naylor has shown some interesting flashes in the majors before this but has mostly been a disappointment since his days as a prospect. However, he's also never had more than 279 plate appearances in parts of four seasons, so it's too early to close the book on him. Dual eligibility only helps his case, and Naylor is worth adding in all 12-team category-based formats as a potential batting average help with some pop. 

Here's who else should be on your radar from Monday's games:

Waiver Wire Targets
CIN Cincinnati • #28 • Age: 34
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
274
ROTO RNK
213th
Fantasy
ROSTERED
46%
I'm not sure what more Tommy Pham needs to do to earn your respect here, folks. He got off to a slow start to the season – hey, who didn't, right? – which is why his overall slash line of .234/.345/.415 doesn't necessarily jump off the page. However, that line is also well above average at this point, and he's been even better over the past few weeks, hitting .309/.405/.559 over his past 19 games, when he hit his first homer. The quality of contact metrics are mostly excellent for Pham, who still has enough speed to swipe some bases, too – he stole his second of the season in addition to going 2 for 4 Tuesday. Pham deserves more respect, and he's worth rostering in all 12-team leagues right now.
CIN Cincinnati • #22 • Age: 29
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
202
ROTO RNK
340th
Fantasy
ROSTERED
28%
I'm less sure about Pham's teammate, Drury, but I can't ignore how well he's hitting the ball right now. Drury went deep for the second time in three games Tuesday and now has six in his first 24 games, hitting .284/.337/.593. And, while his track record doesn't necessarily suggest this is sustainable, the underlying numbers are impressive, as he ranks in the 65th percentile or better in average exit velocity, hard-hit rate, and barrel rate. Add in a great home park and a good-enough 23.6% strikeout rate and Drury is hard to ignore. I don't suspect he'll be a long-term option, but those of you in five outfielder leagues might have someone worth benching for him right now.
OAK Oakland • #56 • Age: 28
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
151.5
ROTO RNK
384th
Fantasy
ROSTERED
38%
It's not clear if Lou Trivino is out of the picture entirely at this point, but Jimenez getting the save Monday night was a good sign – Trivino hadn't pitched the night before while Jimenez had, so it's not like it was just a rest thing. Jimenez now has five saves and one hold for the A's this season, and he's yet to allow an earned run while striking out 28% of opposing batters. Jimenez may provide more of a traditional closer's profile than Trivino, and the way he's pitched so far this season, there's some nice upside if he can stick in the role.
MIA Miami • #36 • Age: 31
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
141.5
ROTO RNK
533rd
Fantasy
ROSTERED
41%
The Marlins bullpen has been better this season than last, but the ninth inning has been a bit of an adventure at times – they've allowed 18 runs in 22.2 innings between the ninth inning and extras so far this season. Anthony Bender looked like he might run away with the closer job with Floro on the IL, but Floro made his return Monday and has a real chance to serve as the primary option for the Marlins now. He was excellent in 2021, sporting a 2.81 ERA with 15 saves – including a 13-for-15 run as the closer over the final two months. Floro doesn't get prototypical closer strikeout marks, but he's a good enough pitcher to stick in the role and provide help in one of the toughest categories in Fantasy.