Wednesday always comes with a split slate, but the main night slate always has a pretty good number of games on it, so we have plenty of choices. It is a mixed bag of starters today as we have some big names, a few young guys who have been pitching well, and then as always, the bottom tier we can look to exploit. We also have some hitters that are just too hot to ignore right now so let’s get right to the goods today!
Salvador Perez, C, KC – We haven’t seen a catcher in contention for the home run lead in a long time, but here we are as Perez is sitting on 41. He has three long balls in the last seven days and a ridiculous eight home runs and 22 RBI in the last two weeks to go with a .308 average. The Orioles are putting Matt Harvey on the mound, and I am still shocked he keeps getting thrown out there. His ERA is over 6.25 and he has allowed seven home runs in his last eight starts. Perez has three hits in seven at-bats in his career against Harvey. Camden Yards is a great ballpark to hit in, especially when Harvey is on the mound!
Wander Franco, SS, TB – Another guy that is just hard to ignore right now as a walk last night extended Franco’s on base streak to 37 games. His price tag has certainly jumped up among the elite, but with production like this what else would you expect? He has hit .385 in the last week with three doubles, a triple, and a home run and .360 over a two-week span. He will face Nate Eovaldi on Wednesday who hasn’t been bad of late but is a guy who really gets rocked when he is off his game. Franco has tripled off him this season, and the game is in hitter-friendly Fenway Park. Franco has hit .308 on the road with five of his seven home runs coming away from Tampa.
Matt Chapman, 3B, OAK – The past couple days have been quiet, but Chapman has still hit five home runs and driven in ten runs in the last two weeks. This is one of my favorite matchups of the day as the A’s will face Dallas Keuchel. Chapman has seven hits in 17 career at-bats (.417 average) with two doubles and three home runs against him. His average is 39 points higher against left-handed pitching and he has two more home runs this season against lefties despite half as many at bats against them. Keuchel has allowed 16 earned runs in his last nine innings over three starts and likely gets walloped by Oakland today. I also like Matt Olson and Josh Harrison if you are feeling a little Athletics stack.
Nick Castellanos, OF, CIN – He homered last night and has been on a great roll lately, hitting .393 with three home runs and seven RBI in the last week. Castellanos has been one of the more consistent hitters throughout 2021. The Cubs send Alec Mills to the mound who has been inconsistent but more bad than good. He allowed three home runs in his last start, and 12 runs in his last 18 innings. Castellanos has five hits in ten at-bats against him in his career, including a double and a home run. 19 of Castellanos 27 homers have come off right-handed pitching and he has hit a ridiculous .373 with 12 home runs in 39 career starts at Wrigley Field.
Austin Meadows, OF, TB – He got a day off last night and had homered in back-to-back games before that. Meadows is hitting .308 in the last week and has driven in a run in seven straight games that he has played in. He has hit .387 against Eovaldi in 18 at-bats with two doubles, a triple, and a home run while driving in three runs. Meadows has eight extra-base hits in 15 career games at Fenway Park.
Ian Happ, OF, CHC – After a ridiculously bad start to the season, Happ has been on fire lately. He has hit .452 with three home runs in seven RBI in the last week. It hasn’t even been short term success as he has hit .370 in the last two weeks and .377 over the last three weeks! The Reds are pitching Vlad Gutierrez who was doing really well, but now has allowed eight earned runs including two home runs in his last two starts that only lasted 6.1 innings. Happ has three hits in six at-bats including a double and a home run against Gutierrez so far.
Austin Hays, OF, BAL – He is riding a 14-game hit streak and has homered in two of the last three games. In fact, he has hit .391 with three home runs in the last two weeks. Hays will face Mike Minor of the Royals who has allowed nine earned runs in his last 16 innings and nine home runs in his last six starts. Connor has hit .302 against left-handed pitching with half of his home runs despite 76 fewer at-bats against lefties.
Daniel Vogelbach, 1B, MIL – This one is a bit of a deep dive, and he hasn’t been playing every day so watch the lineups. However, I feel like he will be in the lineup today against Kyle Gibson who he has five hits in seven career at-bats against including a double and a home run. Gibson is coming off a start where he allowed eight earned runs and Vogelbach has five of his eight home runs at home.