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Wednesday Lineup Card: The Wheeler Report

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)

Angels (Jerome Williams – R) at Orioles (Jason Hammel – R), 12:35
Tigers (Justin Verlander – R) at Royals (James Shields – R), 2:10
Reds (Mike Leake – R) at Cubs (Travis Wood – L), 2:20
Braves (Paul Maholm – L) at Padres (Edinson Volquez – R), 3:40
Giants (Barry Zito – L) at Pirates (Francisco Liriano – L), 7:05
Red Sox (Alfredo Aceves – R) at Rays (Chris Archer – R), 7:10
Brewers (Alfredo Figaro – R) at Marlins (Kevin Slowey – R), 7:10
Cardinals (Shelby Miller – R) at Mets (Dillon Gee – R), 7:10
Indians (Ubaldo Jimenez – R) at Rangers (Nick Tepesch – R), 8:05
Phillies (Tyler Cloyd – R) at Twins (Mike Pelfrey – R), 8:10
Blue Jays (Esmil Rogers – R) at White Sox (Chris Sale – L), 8:10
Nationals (Ross Ohlendorf – R) at Rockies (Jorge De La Rosa – L), 8:40
Yankees (Phil Hughes – R) at Athletics (Dan Straily – R), 10:05
Diamondbacks (Patrick Corbin – L) at Dodgers (Hyun-Jin Ryu – L), 10:10
Astros (Jordan Lyles – R) at Mariners (Jeremy Bonderman – R), 10:10

Day Game After Night Game: LAA/BAL, DET/KC, CIN/CHC, ATL/SD

Injuries

Day-To-Day
Ryan Braun, OF, MIL (thumb) – Remained out of lineup Tuesday.
Clay Buchholz, SP, BOS (neck) – May have scheduled start Friday pushed back a couple of days but is expected to avoid a DL stint.
Alex Cobb, SP, TB (personal) – Expected to make scheduled start Saturday.
Michael Cuddyer, OF, COL (ribs) – Not in lineup Tuesday but was available off the bench.
R.A. Dickey, SP, TOR (back) – Pitching through a back injury that is viewed as less of an issue for knuckleballers.
Bryce Harper, OF, WAS (knee) – Did not undergo any operative procedures during visit with Dr. James Andrews on Monday.
Matt Harvey, SP, NYM (back) – Slated to start Thursday but may not make his next start depending on how he performs Thursday.
Kendrys Morales, 1B, SEA (back) – Scratched from Tuesday’s game with lower back stiffness.
Placido Polanco, 3B, MIA (back) – Out of the lineup Tuesday.
Marco Scutaro, 2B, SF (hand) – Will be held out of Wednesday’s lineup after leaving Tuesday’s game with injury.

Disabled List
Rafael Betancourt, RP, COL (groin) – Received two PRP injections last week and played catch Sunday.
Sean Burnett, RP, LAA (elbow) – Will not require surgery but will be shut down for a month.
Chris Capuano, SP, LAD (triceps) – Will pitch for Triple-A Albuquerque on Friday.
Chris Coghlan, OF, MIA (back) – MRI on Tuesday revealed lower back strain and will sideline him indefinitely.
Johnny Cueto, SP, CIN (shoulder) – Threw 35 pitches off a mound before Tuesday’s game and could start Sunday.
Ross Detwiler, SP, WAS (oblique) – On track to come off the disabled list and start Thursday.
Danny Espinosa, 2B, WAS (wrist) – Expected to resume baseball activities Thursday and rehab at Triple-A Syracuse.
Kyuji Fujikawa, RP, CHC (elbow) – Underwent Tommy John surgery Tuesday.
Austin Jackson, OF, DET (hamstring) – Went 0-for-5 in his first rehab game with Triple-A Toledo on Monday.
Ian Kinsler, 2B, TEX (ribs) – Suggested he may return from DL during current homestand running through June 20.
Erik Kratz, C, PHI (knee) – Will undergo surgery to repair a torn meniscus Wednesday.
Colby Lewis, SP, TEX (forearm) – Could resume throwing from mound early next week.
Ted Lilly, SP, LAD (neck) – Received an epidural in his neck Tuesday.
Zach McAllister, SP, CLE (finger) – Will have finger examined Thursday.
Mitch Moreland, 1B, TEX (hamstring) – Has resumed running and agility drills and remains on track to return June 21 when first eligible.
Brandon Morrow, SP, TOR (forearm) – Completed bullpen session Tuesday but expected to miss at least two or three more weeks.
Charlie Morton, SP, PIT (elbow) – Expected to make season debut Thursday.
Angel Pagan, OF, SF (hamstring) – Will not be activated from DL when eligible Wednesday.
Felipe Paulino, SP, KC (elbow) – Began rehab assignment Tuesday at Double-A Northwest Arkansas.
Chris Perez, RP, CLE (shoulder) – Reported no issues after throwing a bullpen session Tuesday.
Michael Pineda, SP, NYY (shoulder) – Will make rehab start with Low-A Charleston on Friday.
Trevor Plouffe, 3B, MIN (calf) – Went 0-for-3 with a walk in first rehab game at Triple-A Rochester on Monday.
Jose Reyes, SS, TOR (ankle) – Will play in simulated game within the next few days.
Matt Reynolds, RP, ARI (elbow) – Has slight tear in UCL and will be shut down for six weeks.
Stephen Strasburg, SP, WAS (oblique) – Completed 56-pitch simulated game Tuesday without any tightness in oblique.
Huston Street, RP, SD (calf) – Threw simulated game Monday.
Jake Westbrook, SP, STL (elbow) – Will be activated from DL and start Friday.

Transactions

Activated From Disabled List (15-day DL unless otherwise noted)
Carlos Carrasco, SP, CLE (suspension)
John McDonald, SS, CLE
Leyson Septimo, RP, CHW

Placed on Disabled List (15-day DL unless otherwise noted)
Alex Cobb, SP, TB (bereavement list)
Robert Coello, RP, LAA
Edgmer Escalona, RP, COL
Clayton Mortensen, RP, BOS
Wandy Rodriguez, SP, PIT
Pablo Sandoval, 3B, SF
Scott Van Slyke, OF, LAD

Called Up (from Triple-A unless otherwise noted)
Oswaldo Arcia, OF, MIN
Alex Castellanos, OF, LAD
Tony Cingrani, SP, CIN
Gerrit Cole, SP, PIT
Colin Cowgill, OF, NYM
Dane De La Rosa, RP, LAA
Josh Edgin, RP, NYM
Josh Satin, 1B, NYM
Jose De La Torre, RP, BOS
Nick Noonan, 2B, SF
Jake Odorizzi, SP, TB
Josh Outman, RP, COL
Nick Vincent, RP, SD
Chris Withrow, RP, LAD
Mike Zunino, C, SEA

Sent Down (from Triple-A unless otherwise noted)
Juan Diaz, SS, CLE
Henry Rodriguez, 2B, CIN
Justin Sellers, SS, LAD
Leyson Septimo, RP, CHW
Burch Smith, SP, SD

Designated for Assignment
Brandon Bantz, C, SEA
Andy LaRoche, 3B, TOR

Signed
Mark Lowe, RP, WAS (to a minor league contract)
Chien-Ming Wang, SP, TOR

Released
Henry Blanco, C, by TOR

Closer Watch

Dodgers - After Brandon League blew his fourth save of the season Monday night, manager Don Mattingly finally made the move everyone had been waiting for, announcing that Kenley Jansen would take over the closer’s role. With a 2.53 ERA and a 44:6 strikeout-to-walk ratio on the season, Jansen seems to have the requisite skill set to thrive in the role, just as he did in 2012 before a heart ailment derailed his run as closer. Assuming Jansen can steer clear of any sort of medical emergencies, he seems a pretty safe bet to hang on to the job the rest of the way.

Brewers- Jim Henderson was charged with the loss and his first blown save of the season in Wednesday against the Marlins, but what’s most notable is that he was entered the game in the eighth inning. Manager Ron Roenicke said that he’d give Francisco Rodriguez a chance to accumulate save No. 300 for his career (he currently has 298), so it looks like for now Rodriguez will hang on to the job a little bit longer. Henderson still has a 1.66 ERA on the season and was 9-for-9 on save chances prior to Wednesday’s mishap, so he should quickly reassume ninth inning duties once Rodriguez reaches the milestone.

KEY MATCHUPS: HOT

Hot Batter Matchups At-Bats AVG HR XBH RBI BB K SLG OBP OPS
Miguel Cabrera - 3B DET @ KC
6/12 2:10 PM
James Shields 13-26 .500 1 6 4 2 4 .808 .536 1.343
Jhonny Peralta - SS DET @ KC
6/12 2:10 PM
James Shields 10-22 .455 3 4 8 2 5 .909 .480 1.389
Billy Butler - 1B KC vs DET
6/12 2:10 PM
Justin Verlander 21-53 .396 2 6 9 4 7 .585 .448 1.033
Darwin Barney - 2B CHC vs CIN
6/12 2:20 PM
Mike Leake 7-18 .389 0 2 1 0 1 .500 .421 .921
Starlin Castro - SS CHC vs CIN
6/12 2:20 PM
Mike Leake 11-28 .393 0 4 5 1 2 .571 .400 .971
Dan Uggla - 2B ATL @ SD
6/12 3:40 PM
Edinson Volquez 3-12 .250 1 1 3 2 5 .500 .357 .857
Justin Upton - OF ATL @ SD
6/12 3:40 PM
Edinson Volquez 7-12 .583 0 4 2 0 2 .917 .583 1.500
Andrew McCutchen - OF PIT vs SF
6/12 7:05 PM
Barry Zito 7-16 .438 0 2 2 0 0 .625 .438 1.063
Yuniesky Betancourt - 2B MIL @ MIA
6/12 7:10 PM
Kevin Slowey 5-10 .500 0 1 3 0 0 .600 .500 1.100
Adrian Beltre - 3B TEX vs CLE
6/12 8:05 PM
Ubaldo Jimenez 5-12 .417 1 3 4 0 1 .833 .462 1.295
A.J. Pierzynski - C TEX vs CLE
6/12 8:05 PM
Ubaldo Jimenez 3-12 .250 1 3 2 0 1 .667 .250 .917
Ryan Howard - 1B PHI @ MIN
6/12 8:10 PM
Mike Pelfrey 16-43 .372 3 5 7 7 4 .628 .471 1.098
Carlos Gonzalez - OF COL vs WAS
6/12 8:40 PM
Ross Ohlendorf 4-12 .333 1 2 1 2 1 .750 .429 1.179
Troy Tulowitzki - SS COL vs WAS
6/12 8:40 PM
Ross Ohlendorf 3-10 .300 2 2 4 0 2 .900 .273 1.173
Ryan Zimmerman - 3B WAS @ COL
6/12 8:40 PM
Jorge De La Rosa 3-11 .273 1 2 3 1 2 .636 .333 .970
 
Hot Pitcher Matchups At-Bats Opp
AVG
HR
Allow
XBH
Allow
RBI
Allow
BB K Opp
SLG
Opp
OBP
Opp
OPS
James Shields KC vs DET
6/12 2:10 PM
Tigers Batters 56-169 .331 5 19 18 7 43 .509 .355 .864
Barry Zito SF @ PIT
6/12 7:05 PM
Pirates Batters 29-135 .215 2 7 11 10 21 .302 .278 .580

 

KEY MATCHUPS: COLD

Cold Batter Matchups At-Bats AVG HR XBH RBI BB K SLG OBP OPS
Alex Avila - C DET @ KC
6/12 2:10 PM
James Shields 4-15 .267 1 2 3 1 7 .533 .313 .846
Omar Infante - 2B DET @ KC
6/12 2:10 PM
James Shields 2-16 .125 0 1 0 0 5 .188 .125 .313
Eric Hosmer - 1B KC vs DET
6/12 2:10 PM
Justin Verlander 2-20 .100 0 1 1 3 4 .150 .217 .367
Mike Moustakas - 3B KC vs DET
6/12 2:10 PM
Justin Verlander 3-18 .167 0 0 2 1 5 .167 .211 .377
Alfonso Soriano - OF CHC vs CIN
6/12 2:20 PM
Mike Leake 2-18 .111 1 1 2 2 4 .278 .238 .516
Chris Denorfia - OF SD vs ATL
6/12 3:40 PM
Paul Maholm 2-10 .200 0 1 1 3 1 .300 .385 .685
Chase Headley - 3B SD vs ATL
6/12 3:40 PM
Paul Maholm 2-14 .143 0 1 1 3 5 .214 .294 .508
Clint Barmes - SS PIT vs SF
6/12 7:05 PM
Barry Zito 5-29 .172 2 2 3 1 3 .379 .219 .598
Brandon Inge - 3B PIT vs SF
6/12 7:05 PM
Barry Zito 3-26 .115 0 0 1 2 4 .115 .179 .294
Russell Martin - C PIT vs SF
6/12 7:05 PM
Barry Zito 6-36 .167 0 0 1 4 10 .167 .268 .435
Ryan Braun - OF MIL @ MIA
6/12 7:10 PM
Kevin Slowey 2-16 .125 0 0 2 0 5 .125 .118 .243
John Jaso - C OAK vs NYY
6/12 10:05 PM
Phil Hughes 2-12 .167 0 0 0 2 0 .167 .286 .452
 
Cold Pitcher Matchups At-Bats Opp
AVG
HR
Allow
XBH
Allow
RBI
Allow
BB K Opp
SLG
Opp
OBP
Opp
OPS
Mike Leake CIN @ ChC
6/12 2:20 PM
Cubs Batters 33-95 .347 1 12 11 6 11 .508 .395 .903
Edinson Volquez SD vs Atl
6/12 3:40 PM
Braves Batters 21-63 .333 3 11 12 6 19 .599 .391 .991
 
Recommended Pickup

Zack Wheeler, SP, NYM – With owners scrambling to add Kevin Gausman and Michael Wacha to their rosters in recent weeks, it appears the next top pitching prospect to reach the majors will be Wheeler. He’s set to make his first start Friday against the Cubs, and given his impressive pedigree, he’s certainly worth grabbing despite having not faced big league hitters outside of spring training. Wheeler’s numbers at Triple-A Las Vegas may not look especially inspiring (4.14 ERA, 1.34 WHIP), but he had the misfortune of pitching his home games at Cashman Field, one of the most hitter-friendly parks in all of minor league baseball (take a look at this Wall Street Journal article to get a sense of how untenable an environment Wheeler was contending with). With his move to the majors, the Mets are hoping that Wheeler can form a dynamic tandem at the top of the rotation with Matt Harvey for years to come. While that may not fully materialize in Year 1 – especially with Wheeler likely to face an innings cap come September – Wheeler nonetheless possesses a high-90s fastball and improving control, both of which should allow him to experience at least modest success in the early going.

Other Recent Recommendations: Will Middlebrooks, Eric Stults, Kyle Blanks, Matt Garza and Chris Johnson

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