Friday Lineup Card: K is for Knuckleballer

Friday Lineup Card: K is for Knuckleballer

This article is part of our The Lineup Card series.

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Friday's Starters
Giants (Madison Bumgarner – L) at Cubs (Chris Volstad – R), 2:20
Rangers (Ryan Dempster – R) at Indians (Ubaldo Jimenez – R), 7:05
Rams (Adam Wainwright – R) at Nationals (Gio Gonzalez – L), 7:05
White Sox (Jake Peavy – R) at Tigers (Doug Fister – R), 7:05
Orioles (Miguel Gonzalez – R) at Yankees (Hiroki Kuroda – R), 7:05
Rays (Jeremy Hellickson – R) at Blue Jays (Brandon Morrow – R), 7:07
Mets (R.A. Dickey – K) at Marlins (Nate Eovaldi – R), 7:10
Phillies (Roy Halladay – R) at Braves (Mike Minor – L), 7:35
Reds (Mike Leake – R) at Astros (Fernando Abad – L), 8:05
Twins (Cole De Vries – R) at Royals (Will Smith – R), 8:10
Pirates (Jeff Karstens – R) at Brewers (Mark Rogers – R), 8:10
Padres (Clayton Richard – L) at Rockies (Alex White – R), 8:40
Red Sox (Aaron Cook – R) at Athletics (Brandon McCarthy – R), 10:05
Angels (Dan Haren – R) at Mariners (Kevin Millwood – R), 10:10
Diamondbacks (Trevor Cahill – R) at Dodgers (Aaron Harang – R), 10:10

(Yes, K is for knuckleballer. I've wanted to do that all season.)

Day Game After Night Game: SF


Matt Kemp, OF, LAD (face/knee) – Out again Thursday, but could return Friday
Shaun Marcum, SP, MIL (calf) – Left Thursday with cramping; wasn't pitching too well either
Neil Walker, 2B, PIT (back) – Feeling better, but out a few days yet
Bud Norris, SP, HOU (finger) – Expected to make next start after leaving last time with blister
Rafael Furcal, SS, STL (elbow) – Left Thursday with elbow injury
Matt Joyce, OF, TB (forearm) – Back in at DH on Thursday
Michael Saunders, OF, SEA (groin) – Expected back in Friday
Jarrod Dyson, OF, KC (shoulder) – Out Thursday with soreness
Domonic Brown, OF, PHI (knee) – Not a serious issue; he should be back in there soon
Tyler Flowers, C, CHW (personal) – Having a kid; back this weekend

Disabled List
Alex Rodriguez, 3B, NYY (hand) – Looked good in BP Wednesday; back in about 10 days
Lance Berkman, 1B, STL (knee) – Will be activated Saturday
Chad Billingsley, SP, LAD (elbow) – Fears/rumors that he could be done for the season
Huston Street, RP, SD (calf) – Likely to be activated Sunday
Carlos Ruiz, C, PHI (foot) – Hopes to start rehab trip next week
Chris Carpenter, SP, STL (shoulder) – Felt good after Tuesday bullpen; back next year
Vance Worley, SP, PHI (elbow) – Surgery to remove loose bodies; expected back for spring training
Eric Young Jr., OF, COL (ribs) – Intercostal feeling better, but not cleared for baseball activities yet
Peter Bourjos, OF, LAA (wrist) – 5-for-14 over first three rehab games; expected back Monday
Nate Schierholtz, OF, PHI (toe) – Will be activated Saturday
Nick Johnson, 1B, BAL (wrist) – Not expected back this season
Andy Pettitte, SP, NYY (leg) – Will throw off a mound this weekend; trying to rush back if possible
Joe Thatcher, RP, SD (knee) – Threw a perfect inning in rehab game Wednesday; hopes to return this weekend
Brad Penny, RP, SF (shoulder) – Will be a Sept. 1 call-up
Jason Frasor, RP, TOR (forearm) – Will pitch final rehab game Thursday and be activated Saturday
Pedro Feliciano, RP, NYY (shoulder) – Will make rehab start Friday; seems likely to be an inning


Placed on DL
Denard Span, OF, MIN (shoulder)

Activated from DL
Matt Guerrier, RP, LAD

Optioned to Triple-A
Dylan Axelrod, SP, CHW
Zach Stewart, SP, BOS
Zach Britton, SP, BAL
Dallas Keuchel, SP, HOU
Josh Wall, RP, LAD

Called Up
Dan Bard, RP, BOS
Jose Lopez, 2B, CHW
Hector Gimenez, C, CHW
Matt Dominguez, 3B, HOU

Gregory Infante, RP, DET

Closer Watch

Dodgers – Kenley Jansen is having heart problems and is out indefinitely – maybe for the year. (Feel better, man.) In the meantime, Ronald Belisaro got a five-out save Wednesday and could hold the closer's job for the duration of the season. Brandon League could theoretically be an option as well, as someone who has prior experience closing, but considering he's been even worse with the Dodgers than he was with Seattle – a much worse team that removed him from the closer's role in favor of Tom Wilhelmsen, who is a good pitcher, but was on no one's list of closer handcuffs – it seems decidedly unlikely. Other dark horses include Randy Choate and, once he gets healthy, displaced early-season closer Javy Guerra.

Brewers – Francisco Rodriguez has managed to blow seven of 10 save chances this year in an impressive convergence of opportunity and failure. The latest came Thursday, when he entered with a two-run lead and proceeded to record only one out while giving up four hits and three runs. K-Rod had rattled off eight straight scoreless outings and flashed moments of brilliance while doing it, but that came to an abrupt end. Jon Axford had collected saves the prior two days, so he was probably unavailable, and he's likely to continue holding the role despite being just as awful as K-Rod. Jim Henderson collected a hold while pitching a scoreless eighth, but walked two, and amazingly, his 1.61 WHIP is even worse than K-Rod's 1.54. Only true desperation should drive you into the arms of Brewers closers this season.


Starlin Castro - SSCHC vs SF
8/31 2:20 PM
Madison Bumgarner5-12.41701102.500.417.917
Hunter Pence - OFSF @ CHC
8/31 2:20 PM
Chris Volstad5-14.35700012.357.400.757
Pablo Sandoval - 3BSF @ CHC
8/31 2:20 PM
Chris Volstad4-10.40011204.700.4001.100
Carlos Lee - OFMIA vs NYM
8/31 7:10 PM
R.A. Dickey8-21.38114502.667.3811.048
Michael Bourn - OFATL vs PHI
8/31 7:35 PM
Roy Halladay3-10.30011102.600.300.900
Chipper Jones - 3BATL vs PHI
8/31 7:35 PM
Roy Halladay7-13.538252011.231.5381.769
Brian McCann - CATL vs PHI
8/31 7:35 PM
Roy Halladay7-20.35002012.450.381.831
Dan Uggla - 2BATL vs PHI
8/31 7:35 PM
Roy Halladay10-25.40034617.840.4231.263
Ryan Braun - OFMIL vs PIT
8/31 8:10 PM
Jeff Karstens6-22.27324322.682.3601.042
Aramis Ramirez - 3BMIL vs PIT
8/31 8:10 PM
Jeff Karstens5-13.38522402.846.3851.231
Rickie Weeks - 2BMIL vs PIT
8/31 8:10 PM
Jeff Karstens4-21.19033605.619.190.810
Stephen Drew - SSOAK vs BOS
8/31 10:05 PM
Aaron Cook13-38.34206322.579.390.969
Jonny Gomes - OFOAK vs BOS
8/31 10:05 PM
Aaron Cook7-14.500346021.214.5001.714
Miguel Montero - CARI @ LAD
8/31 10:10 PM
Aaron Harang7-14.50012112.786.5331.319
Chris Young - OFARI @ LAD
8/31 10:10 PM
Aaron Harang6-17.35333523.882.4211.303
Alberto Callaspo - 3BLAA @ SEA
8/31 10:10 PM
Kevin Millwood5-15.33300000.333.333.667
Torii Hunter - OFLAA @ SEA
8/31 10:10 PM
Kevin Millwood17-42.405271315.667.4191.085
Kendrys Morales - 1BLAA @ SEA
8/31 10:10 PM
Kevin Millwood5-12.41712412.750.4671.217
Hot Pitcher MatchupsAt-BatsOpp
Adam WainwrightSTL @ WAS
8/31 7:05 PM
Nationals Batters18-80.2253912321.413.258.671
Jake PeavyCWS @ DET
8/31 7:05 PM
Tigers Batters19-91.209057930.260.278.538
Brandon MorrowTOR vs TB
8/31 7:07 PM
Rays Batters17-95.1792541836.292.313.606
R.A. DickeyNYM @ MIA
8/31 7:10 PM
Marlins Batters17-68.250176115.397.261.658


td class="right">.167


Angel Pagan - OFSF @ CHC
8/31 2:20 PM
Chris Volstad1-13.07701201.154.071.225
Nate McLouth - OFBAL @ NYY
8/31 7:05 PM
Hiroki Kuroda2-12.16701101.250.417
Mark Reynolds - 3BBAL @ NYY
8/31 7:05 PM
Hiroki Kuroda4-21.19000419.190.227.418
A.J. Pierzynski - CCWS @ DET
8/31 7:05 PM
Doug Fister0-11.00000001.000.000.000
Miguel Cabrera - 3BDET vs CWS
8/31 7:05 PM
Jake Peavy4-26.154002311.154.241.395
Jhonny Peralta - SSDET vs CWS
8/31 7:05 PM
Jake Peavy3-16.18802203.313.176.489
Jayson Werth - OFWAS vs STL
8/31 7:05 PM
Adam Wainwright2-11.18211404.455.167.621
Matt Joyce - OFTB @ TOR
8/31 7:07 PM
Brandon Morrow2-14.14300116.143.188.330
B.J. Upton - OFTB @ TOR
8/31 7:07 PM
Brandon Morrow2-18.111010410.167.273.439
Ben Zobrist - 2BTB @ TOR
8/31 7:07 PM
Brandon Morrow3-21.14301039.190.250.440
Greg Dobbs - 3BMIA vs NYM
8/31 7:10 PM
R.A. Dickey2-10.20001003.400.200.600
Martin Prado - OFATL vs PHI
8/31 7:35 PM
Roy Halladay2-16.12500025.125.222.347
Corey Hart - OFMIL vs PIT
8/31 8:10 PM
Jeff Karstens2-19.10501015.158.150.308
Dexter Fowler - OFCOL vs SD
8/31 8:40 PM
Clayton Richard2-19.10500036.105.227.333
Justin Upton - OFARI @ LAD
8/31 10:10 PM
Aaron Harang2-16.12501013.188.176.364
Maicer Izturis - 3BLAA @ SEA
8/31 10:10 PM
Kevin Millwood3-19.15800213.158.190.348
Albert Pujols - 1BLAA @ SEA
8/31 10:10 PM
Kevin Millwood2-14.14312202.429.143.571
Vernon Wells - OFLAA @ SEA
8/31 10:10 PM
Kevin Millwood5-28.17923514.429.207.635
Juan Rivera - OFLAD vs ARI
8/31 10:10 PM
Trevor Cahill1-15.06701132.133.222.356
Franklin Gutierrez - OFSEA vs LAA
8/31 10:10 PM
Dan Haren3-18.16700104.167.167.333
John Jaso - CSEA vs LAA
8/31 10:10 PM
Dan Haren2-10.20011121.500.333.833
Miguel Olivo - CSEA vs LAA
8/31 10:10 PM
Dan Haren0-12.00000003.000.000.000
Justin Smoak - 1BSEA vs LAA
8/31 10:10 PM
Dan Haren1-13.07700114.077.143.220
Cold Pitcher MatchupsAt-BatsOpp
Doug FisterDET vs CWS
8/31 7:05 PM
White Sox Batters22-62.35505736.445.383.828
Roy HalladayPHI @ Atl
8/31 7:35 PM
Braves Batters43-143.30191623832.534.334.868
Aaron CookBOS @ Oak
8/31 10:05 PM
Athletics Batters25-67.3733111237.664.4061.070
Aaron HarangLAD vs Ari
8/31 10:10 PM
Diamondbacks Batters24-81.296698719.561.361.923

Recommended Pickup
Michael Saunders, OF, SEA – This doesn't come without some risk, as Saunders has missed the last several games with a groin injury, but he's "really close" to getting back in the lineup, according to Eric Wedge, and Saunders was piling up some under-the-radar fantasy numbers before the injury. He's collected hits in six of his last seven games, totaling four homers and two steals in that period. He's got 14 bombs, 18 steals and 60 runs this season, and though his average hasn't been there all year, he was starting to build it up in that little streak, raising it from .237 to .246. Just two years ago, Saunders was considered the game's No. 30 prospect by Baseball America. The previous season, he'd hit .310/.378/.544 with 13 homers in 64 Triple-A games. Health has always been an issue, but his power-speed combo remains intact.

Other Recent Recommendations:Casey Kelly, David Phelps, Ike Davis, John Mayberry, Pedro Ciriaco

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DraftStreet Lineup
C: Carlos Santana, CLE ($5,277)
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Andrew Fiorentino
Managing hockey editor, talent wrangler, football columnist, FSWA's 2015 fantasy hockey writer of the year. Twitter: @akfiorentino
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