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It's Wednesday, the middle of the week. Some call it hump day. Whether you're agonizing over the week, or it's going well, you know that fantasy baseball is there to sooth your pain. Ray Flowers takes a look at the baseball landscape and points out some matchup numbers that you just mind find a wee bit interesting.
DISH DIAMONDS – The Best Hitting Matchups of the Day
Jay Bruce gets going Wednesday agianst Charlie Morton. He's hit two homers and posted a 1.274 OPS over 23 plate appearances in the matchup. Others who like to see Mr. Morton on the hill include Skip Schumaker (.400 in 25 at-bats) and Brandon Phillips (.344 in 32 at-bats). The Reds as a team are hitting .317 the last seven days, so Mr. Morton might have a rough outing. Oh, and for the hell of it, Devin Mesoraco is batting like three times his weight the past week.
Troy Tulowitzki hits everyone hard, but Matt Cain is taken to a whole other level. In 60 at-bats, a large sample size, Tulo has a .317/.373/.633 slash line that includes four homers, five doubles an a triple.
DISH DISASTERS – Worst Hitting Matchups of the Day
Marlon Byrd is scuffling and he faces Zack Greinke. That is not a pleasing combo for Byrd owners. The stocky outfielder has a mere three hits, though one was a homer, in 20 at-bats versus Greinke. He's also struck out seven times in the matchup. Jayson Nix is even worse with a mere two hits and 10 Ks in 22 at-bats.
Hanley Ramirez gets to take on the newly returned Cole Hamels Wednesday. Hamels hasn't been able to totally muzzle HanRam, he does have an .846 OPS, but Hanley is batting .270 with 16 Ks in 63 at-bats so he's not exactly gone wild either.
Mike Trout... do you dare sit him? I'm the first person to admit that nine at-bats, in the grand scheme, tells us pretty much nothing about a guy. However, when those nine at-bats result in zero hits for Trout I take notice. When I further scan the matchup and see that Trout has struck out in six of those nine at-bats, then I'm really interested. Can Gio Gonzalez continue his dominance of Trout?
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MOUND MAVENS – Starting Pitchers to Target
Zack Greinke is 3-0, has a 2.42 ERA and his K/BB ratio is better than 7:1. He pitches at home against the Phillies and Greinke is 10-2 with a 2.10 ERA and 0.95 WHIP in games at Dodger Stadium.
Aaron Harang has to be starting, doesn't he? Through four starts he has a 0.70 ERA and he's allowed, get this, nine hits over 25.2 innings. That's shocking. I mean bonkers shocking considering that for his career Harang has allowed more than a hit per inning. Coming off being pulled after seven innings of no-hit ball, about the only worry he has agianst the Marlins is if he's got a hangover of if he didn't sleep or eat all day because of a family problem. It's insane that he's been this good. No need to analyze it cause you can't.
Kyle Lohse has won his last three starts. Hes also allowed three or fewer earned runs in all four of his starts this season. The Padres are the opponent Wednesday and they have not been a good offensive club this season as they're hitting .232 with a mere 12 home runs.
Wade Miley has held the current Cubs' roster to a .213/.288/319 line in 47 at-bats. He's also sported a 3.38 ERA on the road over his last 38 appearances.
Jonathon Niese faces a Cardinals club that he is 3-1 against with a 2.00 ERA and 1.19 WHIP over five starts. He's posted a 2.84 ERA this season and has a better than 3:1 K/BB ratio. Niese is also the owner of a 3.63 ERA in 64 starts at Citi Field, so he's a perfectly serviceable option Wednesday.
MOUND MESSES – Starting Pitchers to Avoid
Tyler Chatwood has a 4.50 ERA and 1.60 WHIP over 178 innings at home. The 11/1 K/BB rate this season is fantastic, but do you really think that's a sustainable pace? Of course it isn't. Logic tells you that as does his career mark of 1.32. Plus, the Giants scored four runs off him back on April 13th in San Francisco to saddle him with a loss.
Dustin McGowan starts against the Orioles. Over the last five plus years he's worked at least six innings in a game – once. Good luck with that. He's also sporting a 4.85 ERA and 1.92 WHIP through three starts this season.
Mike Pelfrey – 7.98 ERA and 1.91 WHIP. Rays' batters might have a nice day.
Alfredo Simon has looked sharp thus far allowing only one run in each of his three starts. That streak will end Wednesday. Simon has only 13 Ks in 21 innings, and he's never been known as a control artist (only four walks all season). He's also allowed a big total of 45 homers in 354 career innings, and \ the Pirates currently lead baseball in homers against right-handed pitchers.
Chris Young has one start last six innings the past two plus years. Sure he faces the Astros which aren't exactly a tough matchup, but the last time out Young gave up four runs while recording nine outs. He's also walked six batters and struck out only four in 11 innings. Even with the matchup – pass.
Make sure you tune in to the Fantasy Alarm's Daily Game Show at 6 PM EDT, Monday through Friday on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius210, XM87) as Jeff Mans and Ted Schuster will help you to set your daily lineups.