Fantasy baseball daily notes: Pitcher and hitter rankings for Wednesday

In three starts, rookie right-hander Zach Plesac has logged a 1.86 ERA with a 0.88 WHIP. Quinn Harris/Icon Sportswire

This Wednesday, we have only 12 games, with the Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Angels, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Mets, New York Yankees and Washington Nationals resting following two-game interleague series.

The Milwaukee Brewers gain a designated hitter when they visit Justin Verlander's Houston Astros, a matchup of teams that used to be in the opposite league, and the Battle for Ohio takes place as the Cleveland Indians welcome the Cincinnati Reds, complete with their own DH.



Zach Eflin (R), 43.4 percent rostered in ESPN leagues, Philadelphia Phillies vs. Arizona Diamondbacks: I'm surprised Eflin is eligible for this article. He's had two stumbles (8 2/3 innings, seven runs allowed) in his past four outings, but he's rattled off five quality starts in his past seven appearances. Considering he's struck out just 6.7 per nine in that window, many are questioning his utility in head-to-head/points leagues, but his 2.10 ERA and 1.05 WHIP at home make him at least a consistent matchup play. Arizona ranks near the bottom third with a .310 wOBA versus righties.

Yonny Chirinos (R), 42.9 percent, Tampa Bay Rays vs. Oakland Athletics: Chirinos was likely on many fantasy benches when he spun an eight-inning, six-strikeout shutout appearance last Friday. Making his pay mostly as a primary pitcher, he's actually started the past three games and twirled a ridiculous 1.96 ERA, 9.82 K/9 and 2.45 BB/9. His 2.75 home ERA will come into play for his not yet confirmed, but likely, assignment versus Oakland, who slots in the league's bottom third with a .306 wOBA versus righties.

Anthony DeSclafani (R), 5.8 percent, Cincinnati Reds at Cleveland Indians: DeSclafani continues to underwhelm despite tantalizing peripherals (9.40 K9, 2.88 BB/9). At least he's been marginally better away from Great American Ball Park (4.15 ERA, 3.60 K/BB), and Cleveland ranks near the bottom with a .303 wOBA versus righty pitchers.

Daniel Norris (L), 1.7 percent, Detroit Tigers at Kansas City Royals: Scraping the bottom of the barrel.... Norris (4.60 ERA, 6.89 K/9 this year) is hardly trustworthy, but the Royals hold the third-worst wOBA against lefty pitchers (.276). Add more strength to this recommendation should Hunter Dozier (side) not return from the injured list by Wednesday's action.

Pitchers to avoid

Cole Hamels (L), 92.7 percent, Chicago Cubs at Colorado Rockies: With Hamels coming off 15 scoreless innings across his last two starts, many will be tempted to test fate at Coors Field. Don't.

Projected game scores


Catcher -- Mitch Garver (R), 34.1 percent, Minnesota Twins vs. Seattle Mariners (LHP Tommy Milone): Check the Twins' lineup to make sure it's not Willians Astudillo (10.5 percent) or Jason Castro (3.2 percent), though Castro hits lefty and would be the least likely. Any backstop would do, but Garver deserves spotlight for his breakout year (.317/.410/.693, 10 homers in 117 plate appearances) that's been stifled by Minnesota's catcher rotation. Garver being active would present the most upside, as he's tattooed left-handers to a .507 wOBA and 225 wRC+ in 2019.

First Base -- Ronald Guzman (L), 1.2 percent, Texas Rangers at Boston Red Sox (RHP Rick Porcello): Righty on the hill, Guzman in your fantasy lineup: He's peppered right-handers for a .271/.333/.541 slash. That slugging percentage dwarfs his .303 against southpaws. Porcello has allowed a .353 wOBA to lefty sticks and fails to control the strike zone against them (1.40 K/BB, compared to 4.33 versus righties).

Second Base -- Tony Kemp (L), 9.6 percent, Houston Astros vs. Milwaukee Brewers (RHP Brandon Woodruff): Considering I'm taking the low-hanging fruit of Coors Field action, I passed on including top Astros prospect Yordan Alvarez. (Come on, 9.6 percent rostered? Get on that, people.) Instead, here's Kemp, who owns a .286/.360/.667 with two homers over his past six games. The 27-year-old may be showing a bit more power as he's just two blasts away from tying his season high through only 113 at-bats. Woodruff has allowed 1.36 HR/9 and a 9.6 BB% to lefty batters.

Third Base -- Rio Ruiz (L), less than 1 percent, Baltimore Orioles vs. Toronto Blue Jays (RHP Edwin Jackson): All four of Ruiz's homers have come against right-handers. Jackson has allowed eight homers in 19 2/3 innings while chewing up innings for the flailing Blue Jays.

Shortstop -- Brendan Rodgers (R), 14.4 percent, Colorado Rockies vs. Chicago Cubs (LHP Cole Hamels): Rodgers' underwhelming MLB debut and the Rockies' continued carousel at second base have eliminated him from lineup consideration in most mixed fantasy leagues. Against lefties, however, he'll see most of his playing time, and Hamels has allowed six of his seven homers against righty batters. And, of course, Coors Field.

Corner Infield -- Christian Walker (R), 22 percent, Arizona Diamondbacks at Philadelphia Phillies (RHP Zach Eflin): On lean schedule days like this one, I'll accept listing streaming options versus my pitcher recommendations. Walker has kept reverse-split success versus righties (.347 wOBA, .833 OPS, nine of his 11 homers in 176 plate appearances). If he's getting the day off, slide over to Kevin Cron (1.4 percent), who's only eligible at third base.

Middle Infield -- Brock Holt (L), less than 1 percent, Boston Red Sox vs. Texas Rangers (RHP Lance Lynn): With the lighter schedule, we need to dig. Holt is slashing .310/.383/.357 versus righties through 47 plate appearances against them in 2019, and Lynn has just a 7.94 K/9 versus righties to pair with a 3.18 BB/9.

Outfield -- Jason Heyward (L), 39.3 percent, Chicago Cubs at Colorado Rockies (RHP Antonio Senzatela): The J-Hey Kid wins this article's "hitter visiting Coors Field" lottery. Seven of his nine homers have left right-handed pitches, and he's dominated the plate against them (1.04 BB/K, .800 OPS). Predictably, Senzatela is saddled with a 5.22 ERA in Denver this year.

Outfield -- Teoscar Hernandez (R), 1.3 percent, Toronto Blue Jays at Baltimore Orioles (RHP David Hess): Hernandez returned to the lineup the day after being called up from Triple-A Buffalo and started in five games, through Monday. Toronto will give him a chance to cement an everyday role as they try him out for the future. Enter a matchup with Hess, who's already allowed 20 homers. Oddly enough, 17 have come against righties. Want more sadness? He has a 10.57 home ERA.

Outfield -- Leonys Martin (L), 4.1 percent, Cleveland Indians vs. Cincinnati Reds (RHP Anthony DeSclafani): Despite a lackluster season, Martin has launched all eight of his homers off righty pitchers. His top-side-platoon teammate Tyler Naquin (less than 1 percent) would do, if Martin isn't playing. (He's .282/.315/.412 vs. righties.)