RotoWire Partners

The Lineup Card: Mile-High Pitchers Duel

Zach Sundelius

Zach Sundelius

Zach Sundelius writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.

Projected Starters - A look at Saturday’s matchups:

Blue Jays (Ricky Romero - L) at Yankees (Andy Pettitte - L), 1:05
Reds (Johnny Cueto - R) at Cubs (Randy Wells - R), 1:05
Rays (Wade Davis - R) at Twins (Francisco Liriano - L), 4:10
Marlins (Anibal Sanchez - R) at Braves (Tommy Hanson - R), 4:10
Mets (R.A. Dickey - R) at Nationals (Stephen Strasburg - R), 4:10
Brewers (Manny Parra - L) at Cardinals (Chris Carpenter - R), 6:35
Athletics (Clayton Mortensen - R) at Indians (Jake Westbrook - R), 7:05
Mariners (Jason Vargas - L) at Tigers (Justin Verlander - R), 7:05
Phillies (Kyle Kendrick - R) at Pirates (Paul Maholm - L), 7:05
Orioles (Jeremy Guthrie - R) at Red Sox (Jon Lester - L), 7:10
White Sox (John Danks - L) at Rangers (Tommy Hunter - R), 8:05
Giants (Barry Zito - L) at Rockies (Ubaldo Jimenez - R), 8:10
Astros (Bud Norris - R) at Padres (Kevin Correia - R), 8:35
Royals (Bruce Chen - L) at Angels (Ervin Santana - R), 9:05
Dodgers (Clayton Kershaw - L) at Diamondbacks (Rodrigo Lopez - R), 9:40

Day game after night game: TB, MIN, FLA, ATL, NYM, WAS

Injuries - A brief look at players that have been missing time with minor ailments and their expected returns.

Day-to-Day (includes players expected to make their return from the DL)

Brian Schneider, C, PHI – (Thumb) Didn’t start Friday; still day-to-day
Neil Walker, 3B, PIT – (Concussion) Feeling better, could return Saturday
Chris Carpenter, P, STL – (Forearm) Cleared to start Saturday
Jose Reyes, SS, NYM – (Oblique) Won’t start until Sunday at the earliest
Ryan Ludwick, OF, STL – (Calf) Suffered a setback Friday, likely headed for DL
Brad Hawpe, OF, COL – (Ribs) Didn’t start Friday, may take Saturday off as well
Manny Ramirez, OF, LAD – (Hamstring) Didn’t start Friday; Saturday status uncertain
Will Venable, OF, SD – (Back) Could sit out Saturday
Matt Tolbert, 2B, MIN – (Finger) Likely ticketed for DL
Conor Jackson, OF, OAK – (Hamstring) Didn’t start Thursday or Friday
Dallas Braden, P, OAK – (Elbow) Won’t make Saturday’s scheduled start
Miguel Cabrera, 1B, DET – (Back) Scratched from Friday’s lineup, questionable for Saturday
J.J. Hardy, SS, MIN – (Wrist) Expected to be activated Saturday
Kevin Slowey, P, MIN – (Ankle) Expects to make next start, but Twins might juggle rotation
B.J. Upton, OF, TB – (Quad) Still not starting, but available to pinch-hit
Mike Cameron, OF, BOS – (Abdomen) Late scratch from Friday’s lineup

Players on the DL

Oliver Perez, P, NYM – (Knee) Expected to return in about three weeks
Carlos Ruiz, C, PHI – (Head) Still experiencing symptoms, won’t go on rehab assignment this weekend as planned
Ryan Madson, P, PHI – (Toe) Made third rehab appearance Friday and could be activated before All-Star break
Chad Durbin, P, PHI – (Hamstring) Will begin rehab assignment next week
Antonio Bastardo, P, PHI – (Elbow) Will throw bullpen session Saturday
J.A. Happ, P, PHI – (Forearm) Making another rehab start Sunday that will determine whether he joins Phillies or gets optioned to minors
Placido Polanco, 2B, PHI – (Elbow) Hoping to resume baseball activities around July 10
Chase Utley, 2B, PHI – (Thumb) Exam revealed ligament was pulled off the bone, looking at eight-week timetable
Felipe Paulino, P, HOU – (Shoulder) Won’t return until after All-Star break
Zach Duke, P, PIT – (Elbow) Threw bullpen session; set for rehab appearance Monday
Chris Jakubauskas, P, PIT – (Concussion) Schedule pushed back by groin injury
Luis Castillo, 2B, NYM – (Foot) Scheduled to begin rehab assignment next week, should be ready to return after All-Star break
Rich Harden, P, TEX – (Glute) Threw bullpen session, expects to return after break
Eric Chavez, 3B, OAK – (Neck) Look at best-case scenario of early August
Travis Buck, OF, OAK – (Leg) Could start rehab assignment next week
Josh Beckett, P, BOS – (Back) Expected to make first of several rehab starts on Tuesday
Sergio Mitre, P, NYY – (Oblique) Began rehab assignment Friday
Erik Bedard, P, SEA – (Shoulder) Expects to start for Seattle on Tuesday

Transactions - Players that have been demoted, called up, traded, released, you name it. We’ll cover it here.

Called Up
Tyler Greene, SS, STL
Daniel Schlereth, P, DET
Robert Manuel, P, BOS
Niuman Romero, SS, BOS
Dustin Moseley, P, NYY

Claimed Off Waivers
Jeff Lyman, P, OAK

Sent Down
Scott Strickland, P, FLA
Fernando Salas, P, STL
Boone Logan, P, NYY
Carlos Maldonado, C, WAS
Max Ramirez, C, TEX

Activated from DL
Clay Hensley, P, FLA

Placed on DL
Jason Varitek, C, BOS
Manny Delcarmen, P, BOS
Shaun Marcum, P, TOR

Closer Watch - A closer look at intriguing ninth-inning situations (check out Dave Regan’s Closer Grid with the link to the left).

SEA – David Aardsma took the loss Thursday against the Yankees by coughing up a two-run homer in the eighth inning. He’s now 0-5 with a 5.33 ERA, but a switch to Brandon League doesn’t appear imminent as long as Aardsma remains healthy.

Key Matchups - Spotlight on hitters and pitchers with favorable matchups against the opposing pitcher (generally, matchups with fewer than 10 at-bats are not included). *Check status

Hot
Alex Rodriguez v. Ricky Romero – 4-for-11 (.364), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.462 OBP)
John Buck v. Andy Pettitte – 4-for-13 (.308), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.357 OBP)
John McDonald v. Andy Pettitte – 8-for-24 (.333), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.360 OBP)
Vernon Wells v. Andy Pettitte – 17-for-48 (.354), 2 HR, 9 RBI, 5:7 BB:K (.415 OBP)
Geovany Soto v. Johnny Cueto – 6-for-16 (.375), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2:1 BB:K (.444 OBP)
Alfonso Soriano v. Johnny Cueto – 8-for-18 (.444), 3 HR, 3 RBI, 0:3 BB:K (.444 OBP)
Aramis Ramirez v. Johnny Cueto – 5-for-16 (.313), 2 HR, 4 RBI, 4:4 BB:K (.500 OBP)
Ryan Theriot v. Johnny Cueto – 9-for-23 (.391), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.440 OBP)
Derrek Lee v. Johnny Cueto – 9-for-25 (.360), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.385 OBP)
Brandon Phillips v. Randy Wells – 4-for-10 (.400), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 2:0 BB:K (.500 OBP)
Kelly Shoppach v. Francisco Liriano – 4-for-12 (.333), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:4 BB:K (.385 OBP)
Martin Prado v. Anibal Sanchez – 5-for-13 (.385), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:0 BB:K (.429 OBP)
Brian McCann v. Anibal Sanchez – 6-for-19 (.316), 1 HR, 7 RBI, 3:3 BB:K (.409 OBP)
Nick Stavinoha v. Manny Parra – 4-for-11 (.364), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 0:1 BB:K (.333 OBP)
Albert Pujols v. Manny Parra – 7-for-24 (.292), 2 HR, 3 RBI, 7:5 BB:K (.438 OBP)
Milton Bradley v. Justin Verlander – 5-for-12 (.417), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 4:4 BB:K (.563 OBP)
Franklin Gutierrez v. Justin Verlander – 9-for-29 (.310), 2 HR, 6 RBI, 2:9 BB:K (.355 OBP)
Ichiro Suzuki v. Justin Verlander – 14-for-37 (.378), 1 HR, 5 RBI, 1:5 BB:K (.410 OBP)
Ryan Church v. Kyle Kendrick – 5-for-12 (.417), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 4:1 BB:K (.563 OBP)
Jayson Werth v. Paul Maholm – 5-for-15 (.333), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.375 OBP)
David Ortiz v. Jeremy Guthrie – 8-for-29 (.276), 3 HR, 8 RBI, 3:6 BB:K (.353 OBP)
Matt Wieters v. Jon Lester – 6-for-15 (.400), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:4 BB:K (.400 OBP)
Miguel Tejada v. Jon Lester – 5-for-15 (.333), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 2:1 BB:K (.389 OBP)
Ty Wigginton v. Jon Lester – 7-for-16 (.438), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 3:2 BB:K (.550 OBP)
Dexter Fowler v. Barry Zito – 4-for-12 (.333), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:1 BB:K (.429 OBP)
Pablo Sandoval v. Ubaldo Jimenez – 9-for-22 (.409), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1:5 BB:K (.435 OBP)
Bobby Abreu v. Bruce Chen – 7-for-17 (.412), 0 HR, 7 RBI, 2:3 BB:K (.474 OBP)
Billy Butler v. Ervin Santana – 4-for-18 (.222), 3 HR, 6 RBI, 1:5 BB:K (.250 OBP)
David DeJesus v. Ervin Santana – 11-for-24 (.458), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.519 OBP)
Matt Kemp v. Rodrigo Lopez – 6-for-13 (.462), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.500 OBP)
Andre Ethier v. Rodrigo Lopez – 5-for-15 (.333), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:0 BB:K (.333 OBP)
Russell Martin v. Rodrigo Lopez – 5-for-13 (.385), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 3:0 BB:K (.500 OBP)
Rafael Furcal v. Rodrigo Lopez – 8-for-22 (.364), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 0:3 BB:K (.364 OBP)
Reed Johnson v. Rodrigo Lopez – 9-for-24 (.375), 0 HR, 4 RBI, 1:5 BB:K (.423 OBP)

Ricky Romero v. Yankees – New York managed just one run in 11 innings against Toronto on Friday and faces another stiff test Saturday against Romero. Toronto’s left-hander has a 1.88 ERA over his last six starts, allowing more than two earned runs just once, and has impressive career numbers against the Yankees’ potent lineup. Current pinstripers are hitting .213/337/.387 against him in 90 plate appearances.

Barry Zito v. Rockies – Zito seems to thrive in the thin air of Coors Field, posting a 2.45 ERA in five starts there. Of the eight current Rockies with more than 15 plate appearances against him, none is hitting higher than .241, and the entire roster has mustered a meager .195/.304/.312 line. In 15 innings against Colorado this season, Zito has allowed just three earned runs.

Ubaldo Jimenez v. Giants – A pitchers duel? At Coors Field? It might happen on Saturday, when both Jimenez and Barry Zito boast outstanding career numbers against their opponents. Yes, Jimenez has struggled in his last two outings, but does anyone really question whether he’ll turn things around sooner rather than later? If you need convincing, consider that the Giants have hit just .221/.290/.359 in 147 plate appearances against Colorado’s Cy Young candidate.


Cold
Jorge Posada v. Ricky Romero – 2-for-12 (.167), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 0:7 BB:K (.167 OBP)
Adam Lind v. Andy Pettitte – 3-for-19 (.158), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 3:8 BB:K (.273 OBP)
Lyle Overbay v. Andy Pettitte – 3-for-27 (.111), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:7 BB:K (.111 OBP)
Aaron Hill v. Andy Pettitte – 4-for-27 (.148), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:7 BB:K (.148 OBP)
Jonny Gomes v. Randy Wells – 2-for-10 (.200), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.273 OBP)
Omar Infante v. Anibal Sanchez – 1-for-12 (.083), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.154 OBP)
Skip Schumaker v. Manny Parra – 2-for-10 (.200), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:5 BB:K (.200 OBP)
Felipe Lopez v. Manny Parra – 2-for-11 (.182), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.250 OBP)
Mark Ellis v. Jake Westbrook – 5-for-24 (.208), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.240 OBP)
Chone Figgins v. Justin Verlander – 3-for-21 (.143), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 4:11 BB:K (.269 OBP)
Jimmy Rollins v. Paul Maholm – 3-for-16 (.188), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.235 OBP)
Ryan Howard v. Paul Maholm – 2-for-17 (.118), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:6 BB:K (.167 OBP)
Adrian Beltre v. Jeremy Guthrie – 2-for-20 (.100), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:4 BB:K (.182 OBP)
Nick Markakis v. Jon Lester – 8-for-41 (.195), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:10 BB:K (.214 OBP)
Michael Young v. John Danks – 2-for-10 (.200), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:5 BB:K (.200 OBP)
Ian Stewart v. Barry Zito – 1-for-11 (.091), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:2 BB:K (.167 OBP)
Miguel Olivo v. Barry Zito – 3-for-14 (.214), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 3:7 BB:K (.333 OBP)
Melvin Mora v. Barry Zito – 6-for-34 (.176), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 2:6 BB:K (.222 OBP)
Freddy Sanchez v. Ubaldo Jimenez – 3-for-14 (.214), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:4 BB:K (.267 OBP)
Aaron Rowand v. Ubaldo Jimenez – 5-for-27 (.185), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1:7 BB:K (.267 OBP)
Jose Guillen v. Ervin Santana – 4-for-19 (.211), 0 HR, 5 RBI, 0:8 BB:K (.250 OBP)
Jason Kendall v. Ervin Santana – 4-for-26 (.154), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:4 BB:K (.185 OBP)
Stephen Drew v. Clayton Kershaw – 1-for-10 (.100), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.250 OBP)
Casey Blake v. Rodrigo Lopez – 2-for-14 (.143), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:4 BB:K (.250 OBP)
Garret Anderson v. Rodrigo Lopez – 4-for-26 (.154), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 0:4 BB:K (.148 OBP)

Johnny Cueto v. Cubs – By most other measures, Cueto is scorching hot right now, allowing just two runs over his last 20.2 innings (three starts). The fact that two of those starts came against the weak-hitting Mariners and A’s takes some of the luster off, but we’re more concerned with his career numbers against Chicago. Current Cubbies sport a .333/.399/.605 line against him. Alfonso Soriano leads the charge with a .444 average and three homers in 18 at-bats.

Recommended Pickup

Cliff Pennington, SS, OAK - Pennington’s ownership plummeted after a miserable month of May that saw him hit just .175 with 22 strikeouts in 97 at-bats. With a season average hovering around the Mendoza line as the calendar turned to June, Pennington immediately started hitting, going 30-for-82 (.366) since then to raise his average by 54 points. He’s not a power guy, so you can’t expect much from the HR and RBI departments, but he can buoy your batting average and boost your steals (four swipes in his last eight games).

Other recent recommendations: Coco Crisp, Pat Burrell, Justin Smoak, Jamie Moyer

Top Fantasy Baseball Player News