To stay ahead of other teams in your fantasy baseball leagues, it is important to scour the waiver wire and free agent pool to pick up pitchers that will help your team succeed in the present and future. Here's a look at five pitchers owned in less than 50% of Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball leagues* who are worth adding for Week 19.
Statistics*: 146.2 IP, 12 W, 0 SV, 92 K, 3.62 ERA, 1.29 WHIP
After beating the Philadelphia Phillies in Week 18, Westbrook has now won five straight games. Consistently throwing his pitches and lasting long in starts, he has worked at least six innings in 12 straight starts. Up against the Pittsburgh Pirates at home in Week 19, his success at home this year (7-3 record) makes him worth using without reservations.
SP/RP Kris Medlen, Atlanta Braves (20% owned)
Statistics: 71.0 IP, 3 W, 1 SV, 52 K, 2.28 ERA, 1.08 WHIP
One of the more valuable pitchers for the Braves, Medlen has excelled in both the bullpen and the rotation this year. Allowing only one earned run in each of his last three starts, he'll have a favorable matchup in Week 19 against the San Diego Padres. Even with a possible return to the bullpen with Tommy Hanson's health improving, Medlen's definitely worth using at least one more time in Week 19.
SP Clayton Richard, San Diego Padres (18% owned)
Statistics: 161.2 IP, 9 W, 0 SV, 85 K, 3.79 ERA, 1.19 WHIP
The most consistent starter for San Diego, Richard threw the second complete-game shutout ever by a Padre at Petco Park by allowing just five hits against the Chicago Cubs. Going 2-0 with a 1.27 ERA in his last three starts, he has been strong in the best season of his career and is a two-start option in Week 19. Facing the Atlanta Braves and San Francisco Giants this week, Richard should be reliable in the ERA and WHIP categories.
RP Jim Henderson, Milwaukee Brewers (12% owned)
Statistics: 8.0 IP, 0 W, 2 SV, 13 K, 3.38 ERA, 1.50 WHIP
Although not named the official closer, Henderson was recently called up from the minors and has already caught the eyes of many owners. In just his seventh appearance in the majors, he recorded his first career save and ended up saving back-to-back games against a very good Cincinnati Reds team. With Francisco Rodriguez and John Axford ousted, Henderson could be a great closer option with high strikeout numbers.
RP Wilton Lopez, Houston Astros (12% owned)
Statistics: 46.0 IP, 5 W, 1 SV, 40 K, 2.35 ERA, 1.02 WHIP
Similar to Henderson, Lopez has recently obtained the closer role after being anointed by manager Brad Mills. Unfortunately for Lopez, he pitches for the league-worst Astros, making saves hard to come by. That being said, he will see the team's save chances moving forward and has pitched well since the All-Star break, making him a usable reliever.
Other Week 19 waiver wire adds of interest: Cleveland Indians SP Justin Masterson (46%), Kansas City Royals RP Greg Holland (45%), Pittsburgh Pirates SP Erik Bedard (34%), Oakland Athletics SP Bartolo Colon (33%), Tampa Bay Rays SP Alex Cobb (10%)
*Percentage owned numbers for Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball leagues and player statistics accurate as of August 11, 2012. IP: Innings Pitched, W: Wins, SV: Saves, K: Strikeouts, ERA: Earned Run Average, WHIP: Walks + Hits / Innings Pitched.
Jake Westbrook Game Log, Yahoo! Sports
Kris Medlen Game Log, Yahoo! Sports
Clayton Richard News & Notes, Yahoo! Sports
Jim Henderson Game Log, Yahoo! Sports
Who's Hot, Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball
More from this contributor:
Austin Chang is a lifelong baseball fan, San Francisco Giants supporter, and fantasy baseball player since 2005 who has been a Top 3 finisher in 70% of the leagues he has played in. Follow this contributor on Twitter @_austinchang.
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