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Fred Zinkie

Blanco, Holt could provide waiver-wire value

Blanco, Holt could provide waiver-wire value

This week's 10-pack includes several hitters who could spark a surge up the standings in the coming days. There are also a few two-start pitchers with favorable matchups next week. Finally, there is a closer who is available in many leagues and is pitching as well as virtually any reliever in baseball.

Gregor Blanco, outfielder, Giants
With a career .375 on-base percentage, Blanco possesses the skill set to be a Major League regular. On a deep Giants roster, the outfielder has generally worked in a high-volume bench role, but disabled-list stints by all three San Francisco starting outfielders have opened up a spot for Blanco to serve as the club's regular leadoff man. Blanco should be a temporary source of batting average, steals and runs for those in mixed leagues.
Consider in: 10-team mixed

Brock Holt, second baseman, Red Sox
Like the previously mentioned Blanco, Holt has created a niche as one of the busiest backups in baseball. The versatile All-Star has recently been drawing regular work at second base while Dustin Pedroia is on the disabled list with a hamstring injury. Holt has the plate skills to reach base often from the two-hole in Boston's lineup, and he can compile runs and the occasional steal.
Consider in: 15-team mixed

Holt's RBI single

Kiké Hernandez, second baseman, Dodgers
Hernandez is yet another utility player who has recently been thrust into a starting role, as he has served as the Dodgers' starting second baseman while Howie Kendrick is on the disabled list with a hamstring injury. The 23-year-old is hitting .304 with six homers across 158 at-bats this season, and his Minor League track record shows that he can pick up a few steals. Hernandez is an excellent short-term option in deeper formats.
Consider in: 15-team mixed

Carlos Beltran, outfielder, Yankees
By hitting four homers across his past 26 at-bats, the veteran outfielder has keyed the Yankees' recent recovery from an offensive drought. At age 38, Beltran no longer offers the consistent production that mixed-league owners desire across a full season. But the eight-time All-Star still possesses the power to spark a short-term surge in the coming weeks.
Consider in: 12-team mixed

Beltran's hot streak

Francisco Lindor, shortstop, Indians
Lindor has strayed far from the infamous "rookie wall," as the first-year player has hit .344 across 125 at-bats since the All-Star break. Given the dearth of talent at the shortstop position, mixed-league owners who are stuck with an unproductive asset at that spot should give the youngster a chance in hopes that his recent surge is mostly sustainable. It also helps that Lindor is hitting second in the Tribe's lineup, which puts him between high-end talents Jason Kipnis and Michael Brantley.
Consider in: 12-team mixed

Robbie Ray, starter, D-backs
The left-hander has had his inconsistent moments during his first extended exposure to the Majors, but his overall stats (3.38 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 7.8 K/9 rate) are good enough to warrant deep mixed-league attention. Ray could be a volume play next week when he makes a pair of scheduled starts against lineups (Cardinals, A's) that rank in the bottom 10 teams in baseball in OPS vs. southpaws.
Consider in: 12-team mixed

Ray's six solid frames

Nathan Eovaldi, starter, Yankees
With a 3.29 ERA across his past 11 starts, the right-hander has earned consideration in mixed formats. Eovaldi sometimes struggles to work deep into games, but with the backing of an effective lineup and relief corps, he has managed to post a 13-2 record. With baseball's fastest average fastball velocity among starters per Statcast™ (97.2 mph), the 25-year-old could be an option in shallow formats next week, when he works at home against a strikeout-prone Astros squad before heading to pitcher-friendly Turner Field to take on the light-hitting Braves lineup.
Consider in: 10-team mixed

Nathan Karns, starter, Rays
With a 3.44 ERA, a 1.24 WHIP and a 8.8 K/9 rate in 2015, the rookie righty has had a successful Major League debut season. Karns could perform well next week, when works in front of his talented defensive squad for a pair of starts at his pitcher-friendly home park.
Consider in: 12-team mixed

Karns' one-run outing

Patrick Corbin, starter, D-backs
Corbin has made a successful return from Tommy John surgery by posting a 3.43 ERA and a 1.19 WHIP across eight starts. Like his teammate Ray, the left-hander is due to make a pair of starts next week against lineups that struggle vs. southpaws. This is definitely the time for most mixed-league owners to get Corbin back on their radars.
Consider in: 10-team mixed

Arodys Vizcaino, reliever, Braves
Now a full-time closer, Vizcaino has excelled this season to the tune of a 0.54 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP. The 24-year-old seems to have fully recovered from previous long-term disabled-list stints, as he is now delivering on the raw skills that once made him a notable pitching prospect. Those in need of stretch-run saves -- or those who are living with inconsistent results from a subpar stopper -- should immediately turn their attention to Vizcaino.
Consider in: 10-team mixed

Fred Zinkie is the lead fantasy baseball writer for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FredZinkieMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.