I'd like to get excited about Jung Ho Kang's two-homer game Tuesday.
I'd like to because I was counting on him to be a top-10 shortstop at the beginning of the year, because I still haven't gotten Aledmys Diaz back and have used up all of Brad Miller's magic, because his 16 home runs in 241 at-bats project to about 37 in 550.
But even without the sore shoulder that sidelined him for much of August or his delayed start to the season because of last year's gruesome leg injury, he wasn't making it to 550. Only four times this season have the Pirates started him in four consecutive games, which gives him something in common with many of the most intriguing hitters on waivers this time of year.
They may not play enough to matter, really.
It's an exercise in futility, pursuing 21-year-old Yoan Moncada, who may only start against righties, or the resurgent Yasiel Puig, who may never start against righties. Yulieski Gurriel, who's still finding his footing in the majors and place on the diamond, is in the same boat, as is Josh Bell.
You may get lucky and land the players who bludgeons his way into everyday duty in a few days' time, which is why I wouldn't necessarily advise against adding them, but it feels like a fool's errand. For the vast majority of the season, when you have the benefit of time, you can stockpile upside and trust the at-bats to sort themselves out, but time is rapidly dwindling.
If you don't have a bench spot to play with, you need production now.
Production is not what Inciarte is lacking, his high-contact, all-fields approach making him the 27th-best hitter in Head-to-Head points since the All-Star break and a fixture in my lineups of late. He's boring, but sometimes boring is the perfect complementary piece on a championship-caliber team.
Byron Buxton is another grab-him-and-cross-your-fingers type, but in his case, the production is more in question than the playing time. Never in his many failed stints, though, has he had a six-game stretch as good as this latest one, and we all know the upside he possesses.
You can work with a part-timer a little easier in a Rotisserie league as long as he meets a specific need, such as stolen bases, but Jose Peraza may actually be in line for everyday at-bats. He's the fill-in for Billy Hamilton, who's out with an oblique injury that hasn't officially ended his season but certainly could.
The man billed as the poor man's Hamilton at the start of the year bottled up his base-stealing early on but has come around lately, collecting eight of his 26 stolen bases this season in his last nine games. The increased playing time with Lorenzo Cain out has helped, but he'll split at-bats with Paulo Orlando even when Cain returns and, again, doesn't need regular playing time to factor in the shallowest category.
Matt Boyd disappointed us last week by having his second start pushed back and lasting only four innings in his first, but he turns right around with a seven-inning gem Tuesday against the White Sox, allowing two earned runs and striking out six. He's in line for two starts again next week and will still be in line for them if that second starts gets pushed back a day.
Starting a Rockies pitcher is playing with fire, especially one who doesn't have the bat-missing ability of a Jon Gray, but what Tyler Anderson lacks in pure stuff he makes up for in pitchability. He showed it Tuesday by abandoning his changeup when it didn't have its usual movement in the thin air, which resulted in fewer strikeouts but also just two runs in 7 1/3 innings.