This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Baseball series.
There are a lot of early start times Wednesday, which leaves us with just seven games to choose from for the main slate in Yahoo. To complicate matters, the starting pitching options are just dreadful. Let's examine the matchups to see how ownership percentages might play out.
Cole Hamels ($47) immediately jumps off the page as the chalk pitcher of the night. Although he was hit hard in his first start of the season against the Rangers, it's important to note that game was played in Texas. Hamels was terrible in Globe Life Park in Arlington during his tenure with the Rangers and rebounded to pitch much better after he was dealt to the Cubs. To no surprise, he's allowed three runs across 14 innings since that first start of the year. He'll get to face a weak Marlins lineup that has scored the second-fewest runs (48) in the league, so he should be started with confidence.
After Hamels, it's a steep drop off to the rest of the pitching options. One starter who could be popular based on his matchup is Jeremy Hellickson ($35) against the Giants. The Giants have been just as inept as the Marlins, scoring the third-fewest runs (54) and posting the lowest OPS (.591) in baseball. While he's not a good source for strikeouts, Hellickson did have a 1.07 WHIP across 19 starts last year. He also allowed just 1.1 HR/9.
It's hard to get excited about any of the pitching options past Hamels and Hellickson. Jeff Samardzija ($32) is off to a promising start, but he has a tough opponent in the Nationals. Some people may turn to Kevin Gausman ($39), who has a 0.87 WHIP across two starts. His WHIP dropped from 1.38 with the Orioles to 1.14 after he was dealt to the Braves last year and he was a popular named bounced around the fantasy community heading into draft season. However, he's faced with a tough matchup against a Diamondbacks team that is inside the top-third of the league in runs scored and OPS. Buyer beware.
The Rangers have an excellent matchup against Matt Harvey, who has allowed 16 runs and four home runs across his first 14.1 innings. Harvey didn't fool many batters with his 19.8 percent strikeout rate last year and he also allowed a .341 wOBA to left-handed hitters. This is a prime spot to deploy Joey Gallo ($24), Shin-Soo Choo ($19) and Nomar Mazara ($15).
With David Hess on the mound for the Orioles, the Rays are also in a great spot to be successful. After a strong first start against the Blue Jays, Hess allowed seven runs and four home runs over 10.2 innings in his last two outings against the Yankees and Red Sox. After recording a 16.3 percent strikeout rate last year, he doesn't exactly instill fear in the hearts of his opponents. Austin Meadows ($21) and Tommy Pham ($25) will likely be in a lot of lineups.
While Gausman might not be all that appealing Wednesday, the Braves lineup could be very productive against Zack Godley. After recording a 1.45 WHIP last year, he's posted a 1.47 WHIP across his first three starts. He's even allowed four home runs across 17 innings, which is rare considering he's allowed 1.0 HR/9 for his career. With the potential for plenty of baserunners in this game, expect Freddie Freeman ($22) and Ronald Acuna Jr. ($24) to have high ownership percentages.
It's going to be hard to resist a Rangers stack against Harvey. While the left-handed hitters previously mentioned all stand out as great targets, don't forget about Elvis Andrus ($20), who has started the season off with a 180 wRC+. Asdrubal Cabrera ($15) is also a viable option after posting a .351 wOBA against righties last year.
A Rays stack against Hess is almost as appealing. Outside of Meadows and Pham, they have some options that can do damage at the plate while not destroying your budget. Ji-Man Choi ($15) could be a good target after he recorded a .384 wOBA against right-handed pitching last year. Brandon Lowe ($19) isn't that cheap, but he's recorded at least one hit in nine of his last 10 games and has a .376 wOBA out of the gate.
For a Braves stack, it's hard to not build around Freeman and Acuna. Nick Markakis ($17) also makes a lot of sense at a significantly cheaper price. While he's had his troubles against left-handed pitching, he recorded a .353 wOBA against righties last year. Even though he's certainly not cheap, Josh Donaldson ($20) could also provide a valuable performance after hitting 10-for-30 with two home runs and five doubles across his last eight games.
The Angels don't have a great lineup outside of Mike Trout ($29), so they might be a stack that has a fairly low ownership percentage despite their favorable matchup against Lance Lynn. Lynn has allowed a wOBA of at least .349 against left-handed hitters in three straight seasons, so Justin Bour ($10), Brian Goodwin ($16) and Kole Calhoun ($11) are all viable options for an Angels stack.