Pickups of the Day

Pickups of the Day: Make Room For McCarthy

by George Bissell
Updated On: May 28, 2023, 1:10 am ET

Rotoworld's brand-new Pickups of the Day column is designed to help fantasy managers uncover a handful of widely-available targets over the course of the season. It could be a breakout candidate, a prospect stash, an injury replacement, a pitcher with a favorable matchup or week, a player who is due some better luck, or any other number of scenarios. If there's value to be found on the waiver wire, we will find it and bring it your way. Today's edition features the return of one of last year's breakout fantasy stars for Arizona, the emergence of a potential rotation mainstay in Detroit, and an unheralded middle-of-the-order slugger making some noise for Cincinnati.

Jake McCarthy, OF, Diamondbacks  

Available in 73 percent of Yahoo leagues

According to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic, the Diamondbacks are planning to recall McCarthy from Triple-A Reno ahead of Friday's series opener against the Red Sox at Chase Field. The 25-year-old outfielder, who was a borderline top-100 selection in fantasy drafts just a few months ago following last year's 23-steal breakout campaign, batted .143 (9-for-63) with one homer in 22 games at the outset of the regular season to earn a demotion to the minors. To his credit, he's certainly turned things around at the plate, slashing a robust .333/.419/.533 with four homers and four steals in 22 games for Triple-A Reno to earn another shot with the Diamondbacks. He's at least worthy of a speculative roster spot in all fantasy formats, especially shallow formats where he might've been dropped a few weeks ago, given his stolen base upside. He should have a clear path to everyday at-bats in Arizona until further notice.

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Alex Faedo, SP, Tigers

Available in 96 percent of Yahoo leagues

Faedo authored the strongest performance of his major league career on Thursday evening, recording a career-high 10 strikeouts over six innings of two-run ball against the White Sox. The 27-year-old right-hander induced an eye-popping 18 swinging strikes, including 11 whiffs on his slider alone, and finished with a solid 32 percent CSW. The strikeout totals have fluctuated quite a bit, but he's allowed three earned runs or fewer in each of his four starts since joining Detroit's starting rotation back on May 7. He'll face a tough test his next time out on Tuesday against a formidable Rangers' lineup, but at least that outing will take place in the pitcher-friendly setting of Comerica Park in Detroit. There's definitely some risk here, but Faedo represents a viable streaming option for fantasy managers moving forward.

Spencer Steer, 1B/3B, Reds 

Available in 84 percent of Yahoo leagues

Cincinnati's plethora of top prospects deserve all of the headlines they're currently receiving, but it's enabled Steer to quietly emerge as a middle-of-the-order force and potentially blossom into one of the linchpins of the Reds' extended rebuilding effort. He's recorded at least one hit in eight consecutive games, while also notching four multi-hit performances during that span. The 25-year-old burgeoning slugger has been on a tear over the last few weeks, batting .303 (27-for-89) with four homers and 13 RBI across 22 games since May 1. Perhaps most importantly, he's batting third or fourth for Cincinnati pretty much every day at this point and is looking like a huge component of their future. There's a lot to like here from a fantasy perspective, but Steer's talent in tandem with a clear path to everyday at-bats in Cincinnati make him worthy of a roster spot in deeper mixed leagues. A slight uptick in over-the-fence power could transform him into an elite four-category fantasy contributor someday.

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