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 batters that will help your team succeed in the present and future. Here's a look at five batters owned in less than 50% of Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball leagues* who are worth adding in Week 22.
Statistics*: 101/405 H/AB, 55 R, 26 HR, 70 RBI, 1 SB, .249 AVG
Even with the Pirates recent struggles and drop in the NL Central standings, Alvarez has done plenty of damage in the lineup. In his last five games, he has been 11 for 19 with three homers and seven RBIs, showing how good he can be when he's hot. With more consistent production as of late, Alvarez's numbers could do good for many fantasy owners.
OF Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee Brewers (39% owned)
Statistics: 78/304 H/AB, 56 R, 14 HR, 38 RBI, 27 SB, .257 AVG
A popular addition at around this time last month, Gomez is really starting to live up to his high hype from earlier in his career. Tying a season-high with four hits, a home run, and three runs scored on August 27 against the Chicago Cubs, his power and speed numbers make him somewhat comparable to Los Angeles Angels OF Mike Trout. With 14 homers and 27 stolen bases on the season, his overall numbers and hot bat through August make him a must-add in most formats.
Statistics: 51/148 H/AB, 21 R, 2 HR, 16 RBI, 10 SB, .345 AVG
It's been hard not to pay attention to Ciriaco since all the Red Sox/Los Angeles Dodgers blockbuster trade. Possessing one of the top batting averages in the American League since the trade, his everyday opportunity to play and infield versatility makes him a must-own fantasy option given his recent production. A highly-regarded prospect in the minors for years, his production in the majors is only affirming that belief for fantasy owners reaping in the benefits of playing him.
Statistics: 49/140 H/AB, 22 R, 7 HR, 27 RBI, 5 SB, .350 AVG
Unstoppable since joining the majors in mid-July, Rutledge has been something special at shortstop for the Rockies in place of Troy Tulowitzki. Despite a quad issue, he has had no problem collecting hits, as seen by his .643 slugging percentage. With his overall at production at a fantasy position typically lacking many great options, Rutledge is a viable starting shortstop through fantasy owners' playoff runs.
OF Delmon Young, Detroit Tigers (27% owned)
Statistics: 123/454 H/AB, 45 R, 15 HR, 54 RBI, 0 SB, .271 AVG
Red hot as of late, Young has only failed to collect a hit in four games this month. While his home run total in August has been average, his very good batting average and numerous multi-hit games have elevated his status to once again being as a solid fantasy contributor.
Other Week 22 waiver wire adds of interest: Seattle Mariners 1B/2B Dustin Ackley (46%), Los Angeles Dodgers C A.J. Ellis (29%), Texas Rangers 1B/OF Mitch Moreland (28%), New York Mets 1B/OF Lucas Duda (23%), San Diego Padres 1B/OF Yonder Alonso (17%)
*Percentage owned numbers for Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball leagues and player statistics accurate as of August 30, 2012. H/AB: Hits/At Bats, R: Runs Scored, HR: Home Runs, RBI: Runs Batted In, SB: Stolen Bases, AVG: Batting Average.
Pedro Alvarez Game Log, Yahoo! Sports
Carlos Gomez Game Log, Yahoo! Sports
Delmon Young Game Log, Yahoo! Sports
Who's Hot, Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Baseball
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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 Featured Contributor on Google+ and Twitter @_austinchang.
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