Wednesday's full 15-game slate unfortunately leaves little room for starting-pitcher pickups, but at least there's a Coors Field game to pick on.
Given how many useful hurlers are too widely rostered, we'll have to get creative with those unclaimed in at least 50% of ESPN leagues, perhaps by using both sides of some matchups.
Jalen Beeks (L), rostered in 3.9% of ESPN fantasy leagues, Tampa Bay Rays at San Diego Padres: The Padres' lineup isn't a joke, but San Diego's strikeout problems (24.9%, tied for the seventh-highest rate) allow Beeks to sneak into a rental. The 26-year-old thrives away from Tropicana Field (1.96 ERA, .229/.308/.340, compared to .559 and .294/.369/.471 elsewhere).
Cal Quantrill (R), 9.5%, San Diego Padres vs. Tampa Bay Rays: The Rays head to Petco Park without a designated hitter, and the 24-year-old rookie has gone at least five innings and given up no more than two runs in each of his past five starts, gathering a 0.93 ERA with a 21-5 K-BB in that window.
Homer Bailey (R), 4.8%, Oakland Athletics at San Francisco Giants: The right-hander twirled two quality starts before his Aug. 7 setback at the Cubs, but this is a much friendlier matchup. In the Battle of the Bay, Bailey should enjoy working at pitcher-friendly Oracle Park against a Giants club that's one of the weakest against righties (86 wRC+ is the fifth-worst). If you want to be bold, play Bailey's opponent Tyler Beede (2.8%), who won't have to deal with facing designated hitter Khris Davis. (Sure, Krush is slumping, but he still has big pop, and any AL club losing a DH hurts a bit.)
Pitchers to avoid
Robbie Ray (L), 96%, Arizona Diamondbacks at Colorado Rockies: Fantasy managers will have difficulty benching him for the strikeouts, but those concerned about ERA in their matchups or rotisserie chases should do the usual and avoid using him at Coors Field.
Catcher: Roberto Perez (R), 10.3%, Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox (LHP Brian Johnson): Perez bashes left-handers (seven homers in just 99 at-bats), and Johnson has allowed four big flies in 11.2 innings versus righty batters this year.
Second base: Scooter Gennett (L), 34.5%, San Francisco Giants vs. Oakland Athletics (RHP Homer Bailey): Of course we're also going to recommend batters facing Bailey, especially those who are just starting to find their power like Gennett, who sent a ball into McCovey Cove on Sunday for his first homer at Oracle Park as a Giant. Gennett is certainly worth a pickup if you need middle-infield help, at least when he starts against righty pitching. Jackson has a 3.38 HR/9 in his nine appearances this year.
Third base: Kyle Seager (L), 20.7%, Seattle Mariners at Detroit Tigers (RHP Edwin Jackson): Targeting hitters going against the well-traveled E-Jax is a fine strategy. Let's continue it. In his past 17 games, Seager is slashing .350/.418/.683 with five homers, as he looks to be getting strength back in his previously injured wrist.
Shortstop: Hanser Alberto (R), 5.2%, Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees (LHP J.A. Happ): Alberto is known in daily fantasy and head-to-head leagues for his ability to crush lefty pitching (158 wRC+, .409 wOBA), and he'll come in handy when you're scrounging for extra productive plate appearances down the stretch. Happ has allowed 23 homers to righties (2.29 per nine) and 2.31 per nine at home.
Corner infield: Christian Walker (R), 24.1%, Arizona Diamondbacks at Colorado Rockies (LHP Kyle Freeland): Freeland's rough season includes a .390 wOBA allowed to righties -- the second-highest mark in the majors. Walker's 20-homer breakout season doesn't necessary include favoring facing righties or lefties, but this will do.
Middle infield: Nicky Lopez (L), 0.9%, Kansas City Royals vs. St. Louis Cardinals (RHP Dakota Hudson): Lopez has failed to live up to his steal- and contact-centric minors profile, but he's still occupying regular work against righties for the toiling Royals. Hudson has allowed the third-highest wOBA to lefty batters (.388), so perhaps the 24-year-old infielder can eke out a few hits.
Outfield: Randal Grichuk (R), 22.8%, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Texas Rangers (LHP Kolby Allard): Grichuk turns 28 Tuesday but may be getting some new life from his younger teammates. Since returning to the lineup Saturday after fouling a ball off his mouth Thursday, Grichuk is batting .300 with three homers and eight RBIs in 40 at-bats. Allard has struggled generating strikeouts in the high minors and will be making just his second big league start with his new club.
Outfield: Mike Tauchman (L), 45.4%, New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles (RHP Dylan Bundy): Keep Tauchman ticking in your lineup. Recently, he enjoyed a run of five homers in five games. To fill a gap in New York's injury-riddled lineup, the 28-year-old should continue to see the majority of work versus righties, whom he's crushed for 11 homers in 145 at-bats this season.
Outfield: Kole Calhoun (L), 42%, Los Angeles Angels vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (RHP Chris Archer): Calhoun has slumped in the second half (.227, seven home runs in 97 at-bats), but Archer could be the cure. Batters from both sides of the dish have crushed him, and he's allowed 2.22 HR/9 to lefty sticks. Archer also has been saddled with a devilish 6.66 ERA away from PNC Park.
Hitter ratings account for the opposing starting pitcher's past history (three years' worth as well as past 21 days) as well as ballpark factors. "LH" and "RH" ratings account only for left- and right-handed batters, respectively. Weighted on-base average (wOBA) is the primary statistic used in the calculation. Ratings range from 1-10, with 10 representing the best possible matchup, statistically speaking, and 1 representing the worst. So, for example, a 10 is a must-start rating, while a 1 should be avoided (if possible); a 1-2 is poor, 3-4 is fair, 5-6 is average, 7-8 is very good and 9-10 is excellent. A "*" means that the pitcher lacks requisite career major league data to produce an accurate hitter rating; these are the author's ratings.