Fantasy: Waiver-wire pitcher of the day

Mixed-league roto owners, looking for a waiver-wire pitcher before Wednesday’s full slate of games?

Here’s my free-agent choice (citing most 12-team leagues) for one day of fantasy stardom:

Clayton Richard, Padres (@ Mets)

1. From a splits perspective last year, Richard posted two months of 20-plus strikeouts and two months of a sub-2.50 ERA.

2. Richard (14-14, 3.99 ERA last year) had a 7-3 record in his final 10 decisions, highlighted by a red-hot August: 5-1, 2.42 ERA, 1.12 WHIP, 15/8 K-BB ratio.

3. In five career outings against the Mets, Richard has a 2-1 record with a 2.84 ERA and 6.5 K/9 ratio.

4. For his 2012 debut, Richard didn’t allow an earned run against the Dodgers over seven innings, surrendering only two hits. Digging a little deeper, Richard has a 2.70 ERA in his last three seasonal debuts (2010-12).

The Next Five For Wednesday

1. Alexi Ogando (Rangers) @ Astros — Fantasy optimists shouldn’t expect 8 2/3 innings of perfect ball, a la Yu Darvish from Tuesday night. However, anyone facing a Houston lineup that’s short on high-priced assets — and tangible power — must be taken seriously for at least one day.

In 133 MLB appearances (starting/relief), Ogando has a 19-9 record with a 3.27 ERA, 1.10 WHIP and 231/76 K-BB ratio.

2. Wei-Yin Chen (Orioles) @ Rays — The safest choice of the bunch. Of his last 14 starts in 2012, Chen surrendered three or less runs eight times; and in that span, he also posted five or more strikeouts four times.

3. Edwin Jackson (Cubs) @ Pirates
— Let’s not overreact to his 5.25 ERA from Cactus League action. The ball travels well in Arizona … and most established veterans use spring training to build up arm strength and experiment with pitches.

One more positive: Jackson has a career ERA of 3.10 at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park.

4. Ubaldo Jimenez (Indians) @ Blue Jays — This Cleveland enigma has essentially vanquished his fantasy cred from three years ago. On the plus side, though, he’s always a threat for eight or nine strikeouts against a free-swinging lineup.

5. Wily Peralta (Brewers) vs. Rockies — Milwaukee’s high-risk, high-reward hurler has the tools to be an immediate fantasy force in strikeouts and wins — assuming the Brewers bring the lumber against porous pitching outfits, like the Rockies.

Jay Clemons can be reached on Twitter, day or night, at @FOX_JayClemons.