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2013 Fantasy Baseball: Week 5 Spot Starters

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2013 Fantasy Baseball: Week 5 Spot Starters

Week 5
Howard Smith - USA Today Sports

The art of the spot start is an important factor in fantasy baseball leagues.

Fantasy teams have their handful of set starters ready to go each week, but getting that extra quality start and strikeouts each week without hurting your ERA or WHIP can make a huge difference in both rotisserie leagues and head-to-head matchups.

There are a few factors that go into finding the right guy on the waiver wire to grab for the spot start. Owners obviously need to look at how that pitcher has been performing, but there are other things to look at as well. Matchups are key, as certain weak offenses usually yield solid fantasy starts from the opposing pitchers. Home and away games are also important as some pitchers do better in home games as opposed to away games. Also, there are obvious pitchers parks and some notorious hitters parks that factor into success.

It may be hard to believe, but we are already in Week 5 of the fantasy baseball season. Plenty of lesser name starters have been snatched up after hot starts while other starters that were drafted have found their way to the wire thanks to their struggles.

This week, a few available starters face weaker offenses such as the Seattle Mariners and Chicago Cubs while other starters may be entering a hot streak after beginning the season with a few bad starts.

Scour your leagues wire for a few of the following names that may be able to give you a solid spot start or two this week.

Rich Arleo is a fantasy sports expert with Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @Rarleo, ‘Like’ him on Facebook and add him to your networks on Google.

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Jason Hammel, Baltimore Orioles

Ed Szczepanski - USA Today Sports

Last year's ace for the Baltimore Orioles is owned in just 11 percent of ESPN leagues but has pitched at least six innings in every start without giving up more than four earned runs in any. He is coming off a shutout in Oakland and gets to face a very weak Seattle Mariners lineup on Tuesday.

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Mike Leake, Cincinnati Reds

Jake Roth - USA Today Sports

Leake has been inconsistent this season and only lasted three innings while struggling with his control the last time out. Before that, however, he allowed two runs in 14 innings his past two starts, with one of those starts coming against the Chicago Cubs' anemic offense, which he gets another crack at again on Friday.

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James McDonald, Pittsburgh Pirates

Howard Smith - USA Today Sports

McDonald has dealt with control issues all season and may hurt your WHIP, but he can get you strikeouts and has a good chance at a quality start against Milwaukee Tuesday. He has yet to give up more than four earned runs in a start this season and has given up more than three just once, so he likely wont hurt your ERA and is owned in just 8 percent of ESPN leagues currently.

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Edinson Volquez, San Diego Padres

Christopher Hanewinckel - USA Today Sports

Volquez got off to a terrible start this season but has twirled back-to-back quality starts and faces the Cubs on Tuesday. Take advantage of his hot streak and good matchup while you can.

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Dillon Gee, New York Mets

Brad Penner - USA Today Sports

Gee hasn't done much this season but has faced a few tough offenses. He pitched well against a weak San Diego lineup earlier in the season and shutout Washington in 5.2 innings two starts ago. Up against the Miami Marlins' last-ranked offense Wednesday he should have success.