The final Wednesday of the regular season features the last Coors Field game of the year when the Rockies and Nationals square off in a 3:10 PM ET matinee. The remaining 14 games will be contested under the lights with the Yankees and Blue Jays taking center stage as they continue to vie for a postseason berth as a wild card.
Speaking of playoffs, the days are dwindling to make a move. It also gets harder to make up ground in rotisserie leagues with many players missing games down the stretch. Here are Wednesday suggestions to keep your lineup at full strength.
Alex Wood (L), rostered in 66% of ESPN leagues, San Francisco Giants vs. Arizona Diamondbacks: Okay, so Wood is well over the typical 50% cutoff guiding the selections. However, it's crunch time and he's available in one of three ESPN leagues, so it's worth a glance at the available players list. The Giants are still trying to hold onto their NL West division lead and Wood has a juicy date with a below average offense with a lefty on the hill.
Taylor Hearn (L), 5%, Texas Rangers vs. Los Angeles Angels: Hearns has allowed more than three runs only once in his last seven starts and that was facing a potent White Sox lineup. Wednesday's matchup is against an Angels offense with the fifth lowest wOBA versus southpaws over the second half.
Logan Gilbert (R), 34%, Seattle Mariners vs. Oakland Athletics: Gilbert's 4.83 ERA will likely keep him out of the AL Rookie of the Year discussion, though a 3.80 SIERA suggests he deserves consideration. That said, the current focus is keeping the Mariners in AL wild card contention against a reeling Athletics club.
Miles Mikolas (R), 7%, St. Louis Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers: There is a chance the Cardinals clinch a wild card spot on Tuesday, in which case Mikolas is less appealing if he pitches at all. Assuming the game still matters, Mikolas has done a good job keeping the Cardinals in ballgames, especially during their historic streak to close out the season. To be honest, Mikolas is best saved for those chasing wins.
Bullpen: Despite a hiccup over the weekend against the Yankees, Adam Ottavino is still Boston's likely ninth inning option. With the Red Sox finishing the season against the Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals, Ottavino should have a chance to get back on track.
For the latest team-by-team closer situations, please consult our Closer Chart.
Catcher -- Keibert Ruiz (S), 14%, Washington Nationals at Colorado Rockies (RHP Peter Lambert): As a fly ball hitter, Ruiz is ideal for Coors Field. He's already enjoyed a solid month; this series is icing on the cake for the rookie backstop.
First Base -- Nathaniel Lowe (L), 31%, Texas Rangers vs. Los Angeles Angels (RHP Janson Junk): Lowe has blistered eight balls over 95 mph the past week, with six topping 100 mph. He's in a good spot to keep hitting the ball hard with the platoon edge on a rookie with just five punch outs in his first dozen frames.
Second Base -- Nick Gordon (L), 8%, Minnesota Twins vs. Detroit Tigers (RHP Casey Mize): Base thievery runs in the family, though Gordon isn't quite as prolific as his older brother Dee Strange-Gordon. The younger Gordon does have ten bags in limited playing time and draws a Tigers battery susceptible to the running game.
Third Base -- Phil Gosselin (R), 2%, Los Angeles Angels at Texas Rangers (LHP Taylor Hearn): Gosselin has already set a new personal high in plate appearances helping the injury-riddled Angels all over the diamond. Though he isn't exhibiting platoon splits this season, historically he handles southpaws better than righties, putting Gosselin in play.
Shortstop -- J.P. Crawford (L), 22%, Seattle Mariners vs. Oakland Athletics (RHP Frankie Montas): With a .357/.372/.524 line over the past nine games, Crawford is doing his part to keep the Mariners within shouting distance of the AL Wild Card. Montas can be tough, but Crawford is still in play, enjoying the platoon edge from the leadoff spot.
Corner Infield -- Yoshi Tsutsugo (R), 6%, Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Chicago Cubs (RHP Kyle Hendricks): Tsutsugo has cooled since the Pirates first acquired him, but he's still making a case for next season with a .289/.372/.474 mark in September. There was a time streaming against Hendricks was ill-advised, but the veteran righty has been unable to get untracked all season.
Middle Infield -- Tommy La Stella (L), 11%, San Francisco Giants vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (RHP Merrill Kelly): La Stella doesn't have Brandon Belt's power, but he'll be counted on to help make up for the absence of his injured teammate down the stretch and into the playoffs. That said, La Stella has three homers since September 13, fueling a .293/.396/.561 line.
Outfield -- Harrison Bader (R), 31%, St. Louis Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers (RHP Adrian Houser): Right, lefty - it doesn't matter. Bader has been crushing the ball lately. Over the past six games, he's recorded 12 batted balls over 95 mph with 10 reaching triple digits, two of which eclipsed 105 mph.
Outfield -- Sam Hilliard (L), 3%, Colorado Rockies vs. Washington Nationals (RHP Paolo Espino): For the second straight season, Hilliard has posted disappointing numbers. That said, he's still dangerous at home with the platoon edge.
Outfield -- Leury Garcia (S), 12%, Chicago White Sox vs. Cincinnati Reds (RHP Sonny Gray): When the 2021 started, Garcia was supposed to be a spare part. However, injuries have yielded Garcia the second most plate appearances of his career. He's responded with the second highest wRC+ of his career, albeit a low 54 mark. Even so, he's finishing strong with a .344/.382/.406 line and is an option in deep formats.