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Wednesday Lineup Card: Closing Time For Valverde?

Adam Wolf

Adam Wolf

Adam began writing for RotoWire in the spring of 2012 as an undergrad student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He primarily serves as the site's day-to-day editor of NHL content, while also working as the Chicago Bears and Colorado Rockies beat writer, managing the site's Closer Grid, and contributing to the football and baseball magazines.

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Wednesday’s Starters (All times Eastern)

Cubs (Jeff Samardzija – R) at Reds (Mat Latos – R), 12:35
Blue Jays (Brandon Morrow – R) at Orioles (Josh Stinson – R), 12:35
Cardinals (Jaime Garcia – L) at Nationals (Stephen Strasburg – R), 1:05
Indians (Zach McAllister – R) at White Sox (Jose Quintana – L), 2:10
Mariners (Joe Saunders – L) at Astros (Lucas Harrell – R), 2:10
Braves (Tim Hudson – R) at Rockies (Tyler Chatwood – R), 3:10
Diamondbacks (Ian Kennedy – R) at Giants (Madison Bumgarner – L), 3:45
Athletics (Brett Anderson – L) at Red Sox (Jon Lester – L), 4:05
Pirates (Wandy Rodriguez – L) at Phillies (Roy Halladay – R), 7:05
Royals (Luis Mendoza – R) at Tigers (Justin Verlander – R), 7:08
Dodgers (Ted Lilly – L) at Mets (Matt Harvey – R), 7:10
Yankees (Andy Pettitte – L) at Rays (Alex Cobb – R), 7:10
Rangers (Yu Darvish – R) at Angels (Michael Roth – R), 10:05
Brewers (Marco Estrada – R) at Padres (Edinson Volquez – R), 10:10

Day Game After A Night Game: CHC/CIN, TOR/BAL, STL/WAS, CLE/CWS, SEA/HOU, ATL/COL, ARI/SF

Injuries

Day-To-Day
Jonathan Broxton, RP, CIN (hand) – Said he would be available to pitch Tuesday.
Sean Burnett, RP, LAA (forearm) – Dealing with soreness and wasn’t available Tuesday.
Matt Dominguez, 3B, HOU (elbow) – Returned to lineup Tuesday.
Brian Duensing, RP, MIN (illness) – Dealing with flu-like symptoms and wasn’t expected to be available for Tuesday’s doubleheader.
Todd Helton, 1B, COL (forearm) – Has seen swelling go down following treatment and expected to avoid a DL stint.
Jon Niese, SP, NYM (leg) – X-rays come back negative and diagnosed with a bruise after he was forced to leave Tuesday’s game.
Kyle Lohse, SP, MIL (finger) – Not expected to miss next turn in the rotation.
Carlos Quentin, OF, SD (suspension) – Returned from suspension Tuesday.
Dan Uggla, 2B, ATL (calf) – Returned to the lineup for first game of Tuesday’s doubleheader, but didn’t start in second game.
Kevin Youkilis, 3B, NYY (back) – Unlikely to play before Thursday against the Blue Jays.

Disabled List
Erick Aybar, SS, LAA (heel) – Will not immediately come off DL when eligible Thursday.
Chad Billingsley, SP, LAD (elbow) – Will undergo Tommy John surgery and miss the rest of the season.
Dylan Bundy, SP, BAL (elbow) – Will meet with Dr. James Andrews regarding ailing right elbow.
Jhoulys Chacin, SP, COL (back) – MRI on Monday revealed a mid-back strain.
Josh Fields, RP, HOU (forearm) – Nearing a rehab assignment at Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Curtis Granderson, OF, NYY (forearm) – Hit off a tee and hit soft-toss Monday.
Matt Harrison, SP, TEX (back) – Underwent successful surgery Tuesday.
Jason Heyward, OF, ATL (stomach) – Underwent emergency appendectomy Monday night.
John Lackey, SP, BOS (biceps) – Will toss another bullpen session Thursday and expected to start Sunday against the Astros.
Colby Lewis, SP, TEX (forearm) – Could begin a rehab assignment after two live batting practice sessions and an extended spring training performance.
Shaun Marcum, SP, NYM (neck) – Cleared to make season debut Saturday.
Sean Marshall, RP, CIN (shoulder) – Threw a perfect inning in rehab game at Triple-A Louisville on Monday.
Martin Perez, SP, TEX (wrist) – Could begin rehab assignment as early as next week.
Aramis Ramirez, 3B, MIL (knee) – Will be put through a series of workouts this week to get a clearer picture of timetable for return.
Tsuyoshi Wada, SP, BAL (elbow) – Threw four innings in an extended spring training game Tuesday.

Transactions

Called Up (from Triple-A unless otherwise noted)
Juan Lagares, OF, NYM
Tyler Pastornicky, SS, ATL
Carlos Peguero, OF, SEA
Bruce Rondon, RP, DET
Casper Wells, OF, OAK

Sent Down (to Triple-A unless otherwise noted)
Xavier Cedeno, RP, WAS
Kirk Nieuwenhuis, OF, NYM
Alex Presley, OF, PIT
Michael Taylor, OF, OAK

Activated from DL
Brandon Inge, 3B, PIT
Carlos Quentin, OF, SD (concluded 8-game suspension)

Placed on DL (15-day unless otherwise noted)
Octavio Dotel, RP, DET
Franklin Gutierrez, OF, SEA
Jason Heyward, OF, ATL
Jose Reyes, SS, TOR (transferred to 60-day DL)

Claimed off Waivers
Xavier Cedeno, RP, WAS
Aaron Laffey, SP, NYM

Closer Watch

Red Sox: Manager John Farrell announced following Monday’s game that he has not committed to Joel Hanrahan returning to the closer role when he comes back from a hamstring injury. Since Hanrahan was placed on the DL last week, Andrew Bailey has converted three of four save opportunities, striking out eight batters in five innings of duty. Hanrahan threw off a mound Monday for the first time since sustaining the hamstring injury, but Farrell will wait to see how the rehab appearances go before addressing Boston's closer situation going forward. In addition to recovering from the injury, Hanrahan is also working on a mechanical flaw that arose because of the hamstring.

Tigers: Improbably, it looks like the Tigers’ lengthy search for a suitable closer may have circled back right to where it started. The team announced Jose Valverde will be added to the major league roster Wednesday, and manager Jim Leyland said he would be used in a save situation if one were to present itself. Leyland did not officially name Valverde his closer, but it looks like he will be the one getting the ball in the ninth inning moving forward, displacing Joaquin Benoit from the role. Valverde may still be a free agent in some leagues, but on the heels of Leyland's comments, that probably won't be the case for long.

Twins: Glen Perkins recorded a perfect ninth inning against the Marlins in Game 1 of Tuesday’s doubleheader, striking out the side in 20 pitches. Perkins now has six saves on the season and has looked dominant in the early going, as his 2.35 ERA and 0.65 WHIP attest.

KEY MATCHUPS: HOT

Hot Batter Matchups At-Bats AVG HR XBH RBI BB K SLG OBP OPS
Adam Jones - OF BAL vs TOR
4/24 12:35 PM
Brandon Morrow 5-17 .294 1 2 4 0 5 .529 .333 .863
Todd Helton - 1B COL vs ATL
4/24 3:10 PM
Tim Hudson 10-15 .667 1 5 7 1 0 1.133 .722 1.856
Buster Posey - C SF vs ARI
4/24 3:45 PM
Ian Kennedy 6-14 .429 0 2 2 1 1 .571 .467 1.038
Mike Napoli - C BOS vs OAK
4/24 4:05 PM
Brett Anderson 4-10 .400 1 3 4 4 3 .900 .571 1.471
Jeff Francoeur - OF KC @ DET
4/24 7:05 PM
Max Scherzer 6-20 .300 1 4 2 0 7 .650 .300 .950
Alex Gordon - OF KC @ DET
4/24 7:05 PM
Max Scherzer 5-13 .385 1 1 1 2 3 .615 .467 1.082
Ryan Howard - 1B PHI vs PIT
4/24 7:05 PM
Wandy Rodriguez 4-12 .333 1 1 4 1 4 .583 .385 .968
Jimmy Rollins - SS PHI vs PIT
4/24 7:05 PM
Wandy Rodriguez 6-15 .400 1 1 1 0 0 .600 .400 1.000
Garrett Jones - 1B PIT @ PHI
4/24 7:05 PM
Roy Halladay 4-10 .400 0 0 1 0 2 .400 .400 .800
Gaby Sanchez - 1B PIT @ PHI
4/24 7:05 PM
Roy Halladay 7-24 .292 2 3 2 0 5 .583 .292 .875
Marlon Byrd - OF NYM vs LAD
4/24 7:10 PM
Ted Lilly 8-17 .471 1 2 8 0 3 .706 .471 1.176
Ben Zobrist - 2B TB vs NYY
4/24 7:10 PM
Andy Pettitte 7-16 .438 2 2 4 3 1 .813 .500 1.313
Yuniesky Betancourt - 2B MIL @ SD
4/24 10:10 PM
Edinson Volquez 3-10 .300 1 1 2 1 1 .600 .364 .964
Ryan Braun - OF MIL @ SD
4/24 10:10 PM
Edinson Volquez 7-19 .368 1 2 3 5 4 .579 .500 1.079
Rickie Weeks - 2B MIL @ SD
4/24 10:10 PM
Edinson Volquez 6-10 .600 2 3 3 1 1 1.300 .667 1.967
 
Hot Pitcher Matchups At-Bats Opp
AVG
HR
Allow
XBH
Allow
RBI
Allow
BB K Opp
SLG
Opp
OBP
Opp
OPS
Ian Kennedy ARI @ SF
4/24 3:45 PM
Giants Batters 20-83 .241 0 5 7 6 20 .303 .290 .592
Brett Anderson OAK @ BOS
4/24 4:05 PM
Red Sox Batters 13-61 .213 1 5 4 7 9 .354 .294 .649
Roy Halladay PHI vs PIT
4/24 7:05 PM
Pirates Batters 19-90 .211 4 5 8 3 19 .348 .237 .585
Wade Davis KC @ DET
4/24 7:05 PM
Tigers Batters 11-63 .175 3 6 8 5 11 .354 .232 .586

 

KEY MATCHUPS: COLD

Cold Batter Matchups At-Bats AVG HR XBH RBI BB K SLG OBP OPS
Jayson Werth - OF WAS vs STL
4/24 1:05 PM
Jaime Garcia 2-10 .200 0 1 1 1 2 .300 .273 .573
Andres Torres - OF SF vs ARI
4/24 3:45 PM
Ian Kennedy 4-22 .182 0 1 0 1 6 .227 .217 .445
Jacoby Ellsbury - OF BOS vs OAK
4/24 4:05 PM
Brett Anderson 0-11 .000 0 0 0 1 1 .000 .083 .083
Dustin Pedroia - 2B BOS vs OAK
4/24 4:05 PM
Brett Anderson 2-12 .167 0 1 0 2 1 .250 .286 .536
Jarrod Saltalamacchia - C BOS vs OAK
4/24 4:05 PM
Brett Anderson 3-15 .200 0 0 0 0 2 .200 .200 .400
Alcides Escobar - SS KC @ DET
4/24 7:05 PM
Max Scherzer 2-12 .167 1 1 1 0 1 .417 .167 .583
Miguel Tejada - SS KC @ DET
4/24 7:05 PM
Max Scherzer 2-11 .182 0 0 0 0 3 .182 .250 .432
Chase Utley - 2B PHI vs PIT
4/24 7:05 PM
Wandy Rodriguez 2-10 .200 0 1 1 1 2 .300 .273 .573
Brandon Inge - 3B PIT @ PHI
4/24 7:05 PM
Roy Halladay 3-24 .125 1 1 2 1 3 .250 .160 .410
Evan Longoria - 3B TB vs NYY
4/24 7:10 PM
Andy Pettitte 2-18 .111 1 2 2 4 10 .333 .304 .638
 
Cold Pitcher Matchups At-Bats Opp
AVG
HR
Allow
XBH
Allow
RBI
Allow
BB K Opp
SLG
Opp
OBP
Opp
OPS
Brandon Morrow TOR @ Bal
4/24 12:35 PM
Orioles Batters 21-63 .333 6 11 14 10 16 .712 .434 1.145
 


Recommended Pickup

Ricky Nolasco, SP, MIA – Thanks largely to the hapless Marlins lineup tasked with putting up runs for him, Nolasco had yet to record a win through his four starts heading into Tuesday’s doubleheader with the Twins. While wins may remain fairly elusive for Nolasco and the rest of the rotation throughout the season, Nolasco does possess the potential to provide capable numbers elsewhere as a starter at the back end of a fantasy rotation in deeper mixed leagues. Nolasco has routinely finished the past three campaigns with an ERA in the mid-fours, but his 3.84 career FIP would seem to argue that he’s been a better pitcher than the numbers might suggest. Be wary of a strikeout rate has fallen in recent years, but a lack of a decline in velocity and an increased groundball rate has allowed him to rack up outs with greater efficiency than before. With his next matchup coming against a mediocre Cubs squad, Nolasco would at the very least seem like a justifiable streaming option.

Other Recent Recommendations: Brandon Crawford, Lucas Duda, Daniel Nava, Dee Gordon and Tony Cingrani

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