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The Lineup Card: Dodger Swap

Zach Sundelius

Zach Sundelius writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.

Projected Starters - A look at Saturday's matchups:

Cubs (Carlos Zambrano - R) at Cardinals (Chris Carpenter - R), 4:10
Padres (Mat Latos - R) at Giants (Madison Bumgarner - L), 4:10
Orioles (Brian Matusz - L) at Rays (Andy Sonnanstine - R), 4:10
Tigers (Rick Porcello - R) at White Sox (Edwin Jackson - R), 7:05
Mariners (Jason Vargas - L) at Indians (Mitch Talbot - R), 7:05
Pirates (Paul Maholm - L) at Astros (Nelson Figueroa - R), 7:05
Diamondbacks (Ian Kennedy - R) at Nationals (Jason Marquis - R), 7:05
Yankees (Philip Hughes - R) at Royals (Sean O'Sullivan - R), 7:10
Athletics (Trevor Cahill - R) at Twins (Brian Duensing - L), 7:10
Dodgers (Ted Lilly - L) at Braves (Derek Lowe - R), 7:10
Marlins (Sean West - L) at Reds (Mike Leake - R), 7:10
Phillies (Roy Halladay - R) at Mets (Pat Misch - L), 7:10
Red Sox (Jon Lester - L) at Rangers (Colby Lewis - R), 8:05
Brewers (Chris Narveson - L) at Rockies (Esmil Rogers - R), 8:10
Blue Jays (Brett Cecil - L) at Angels (Ervin Santana - R), 9:05

Day game after a night game: CHC, STL, SD, SF, BAL, TB

Injuries - A brief look at players who have been missing time with injuries and their expected returns

Day-to-Day (includes players expected to make their return from the DL)
Derek Lowe, P, ATL (Hamstring) Fully expected to start Saturday
Francisco Rodriguez, P, NYM (Suspension) Expected to be activated Saturday
Aramis Ramirez, 3B, CHC (Ribs) Out of the lineup Friday for the third straight day
Ross Gload, 1B, PHI (Groin) Remains day-to-day
Matt Lindstrom, P, HOU (Back) Still being evaluated, hasn't pitched since Tuesday
Carlos Ruiz, C, PHI (Quad) Scratched Friday, not expected to be serious
Ronny Cedeno, SS, PIT (Shoulder) Out for several days
Mitch Talbot, P, CLE (Back) Will be activated and start Saturday
Brett Cecil, P, TOR (Knee) On track to start Saturday
J.J. Hardy, SS, MIN (Wrist) Playing through injury
David Purcey, P, TOR (Foot) Day-to-day
Bobby Jenks, P, CHW (Back) DL a possibility
Andruw Jones, DH, CHW (Back) No timetable for return

Players on the DL
Ross Detwiler, P, WAS (Hip) Could return this season, but Rangers will be cautious
Ryan Howard, 1B, PHI (Ankle) Won't be ready when eligible on Tuesday
Martin Prado, 2B, ATL (Finger) Felt pain when hitting Friday, many not return Tuesday
Rafael Furcal, SS, LAD (Back) Needs to go on rehab assignment
Nick Punto, SS, MIN (Hamstring) Could be activated this weekend
Aaron Laffey, P, CLE (Shoulder) Threw another bullpen Friday, next step TBD
Jim Johnson, P, BAL (Elbow) Moved rehab to Double-A, likely to rejoin team in September
Mike Cameron, OF, BOS (Abdomen) Felt soreness during batting practice
Conor Jackson, OF, OAK (Hamstring) Could return early next week
David DeJesus, OF, KC (Thumb) Still hoping to play this season, although it's unlikely
Luke Hochevar, P, KC (Elbow) Threw off a mound, will proceed slowly
Jose Mijares, P, MIN (Knee) Torn meniscus, out four weeks
Milton Bradley, OF, SEA (Knee) Has not resumed baseball activities
David Hernandez, P, BAL (Ankle) Will need more than 15 days on DL
Justin Morneau, 1B, MIN (Concussion) Still experiencing symptoms
Andy Pettitte, P, NYY (Groin) Suffers setback, won't make rehab appearance early next week as expected

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

Called Up
Brandon Hicks, 3B, ATL
Steven Tolleson, SS, OAK
Marc Rzepczynski, P, TOR

Sent Down
Lou Montanez, OF, BAL
Micah Hoffpauir, 1B, CHC
Dayan Viciedo, 3B, CHW
Brad Mills, P, TOR

Activated from the DL
Derrek Lee, 1B, CHC (bereavement list)
Mark Teahen, 3B, CHW

Placed on DL (15-day unless otherwise noted)
Adam Rosales, 2B, OAK
Chipper Jones, 3B, ATL

Jody Gerut, OF, MIL

Jose Guillen, OF, from KC to SF

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

BOS Jonathan Papelbon blew another save Thursday, his sixth of the season, but it was just the second time in his last 18 appearances that he allowed an earned run, so the Daniel Bard watch probably won't begin in force until 2011.

LAD Jonathan Broxton allowed four runs (three earned) Thursday without recording an out. He'll be replaced temporarily by Hong-Chih Kuo until manager Joe Torre feels he can trust Broxton in the ninth-inning again. Broxton hasn't lost any velocity and Torre ruled out any physical ailment, so hopefully a brief respite from the closer job will give Broxton a chance to regroup and come back effectively. In the meantime, Hong-Chih Kuo could be a short-term source of saves.

CHW Bobby Jenks is dealing with back spasms and the White Sox, locked in a tight divisional race, may opt to put him on the disabled list this weekend. Nothing is certain yet, but J.J. Putz and Matt Thornton could have some save opportunities on the horizon.

Key Matchups - Spotlight on hitters and pitchers with favorable matchups against their opponent on a particular day (generally, individual matchups with fewer than 10 at-bats are not included) *Check status

Randy Winn v. Carlos Zambrano 6-for-14 (.429), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 3:1 BB:K (.529 OBP)
Skip Schumaker v. Carlos Zambrano 10-for-29 (.345), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2:1 BB:K (.387 OBP)
Felipe Lopez v. Carlos Zambrano 14-for-40 (.350), 2 HR, 7 RBI, 9:9 BB:K (.469 OBP)
Albert Pujols v. Carlos Zambrano 16-for-61 (.262), 5 HR, 14 RBI, 9:12 BB:K (.347 OBP)
Carlos Zambrano v. Chris Carpenter 6-for-10 (.600), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:2 BB:K *First time I've listed a pitcher as a hot hitter!
Marlon Byrd v. Chris Carpenter 6-for-17 (.353), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:3 BB:K (.389 OBP)
Alfonso Soriano v. Chris Carpenter 13-for-39 (.333), 2 HR, 7 RBI, 1:7 BB:K (.350 OBP)
Jason Bartlett v. Brian Matusz 4-for-10 (.400), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:2 BB:K (.400 OBP)
Brian Roberts v. Andy Sonnanstine 7-for-19 (.368), 0 HR, 4 RBI, 5:0 BB:K (.480 OBP)
Alexei Ramirez v. Rick Porcello 4-for-10 (.400), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 0:0 BB:K (.400 OBP)
Paul Konerko v. Rick Porcello 5-for-10 (.500), 1 HR, 5 RBI, 1:1 BB:K (.545 OBP)
Carlos Guillen v. Edwin Jackson 4-for-10 (.400), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.455 OBP)
Mark Reynolds v. Jason Marquis 4-for-11 (.364), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1:1 BB:K (.417 OBP)
Chris Young v. Jason Marquis 4-for-16 (.250), 3 HR, 6 RBI, 0:2 BB:K (.250 OBP)
Alex Gonzalez v. Ted Lilly 6-for-18 (.333), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:5 BB:K (.368 OBP)
Jose Reyes v. Roy Halladay 6-for-11 (.545), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:1 BB:K (.583 OBP)
Carlos Beltran v. Roy Halladay 11-for-31 (.355), 1 HR, 7 RBI, 3:8 BB:K (.400 OBP)
Michael Young v. Jon Lester 9-for-20 (.450), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2:3 BB:K (.500 OBP)
Adam Lind v. Ervin Santana 4-for-11 (.364), 2 HR, 4 RBI, 0:1 BB:K (.364 OBP)

Paul Maholm v. Astros Not only is Houston next-to-last in runs scored in the NL this season, the Astros have also struggled historically against Maholm, hitting just .208/.247/.274 in 241 plate appearances. Unfortunately, Maholm's been getting pounded over the last few weeks, but if he's going to right the ship at any point, Saturday presents a good opportunity.

Yadier Molina v. Carlos Zambrano 7-for-32 (.219), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 2:4 BB:K (.257 OBP)
Kosuke Fukudome v. Chris Carpenter 2-for-13 (.154), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:1 BB:K (.267 OBP)
Luke Scott v. Andy Sonnanstine 3-for-13 (.231), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 2:3 BB:K (.333 OBP)
Jhonny Peralta v. Edwin Jackson 5-for-23 (.217), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2:4 BB:K (.280 OBP)
Johnny Damon v. Edwin Jackson 5-for-30 (.167), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 3:4 BB:K (.242 OBP)
Pedro Feliz v. Paul Maholm 4-for-17 (.235), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 1:0 BB:K (.278 OBP)
Jeff Keppinger v. Paul Maholm 7-for-29 (.241), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:0 BB:K (.241 OBP)
Carlos Lee v. Paul Maholm 8-for-41 (.195), 0 HR, 4 RBI, 1:3 BB:K (.214 OBP)
Kelly Johnson v. Jason Marquis 1-for-11 (.091), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:0 B:K (.091 OBP)
Troy Glaus v. Ted Lilly 2-for-20 (.100), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1:7 BB:K (.143 OBP)
Ryan Theriot v. Derek Lowe 2-for-15 (.133), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:2 BB:K (.188 OBP)
Brad Ausmus v. Derek Lowe 4-for-23 (.174), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:3 BB:K (.174 OBP)
Garret Anderson v. Derek Lowe 9-for-44 (.205), 0 HR, 4 RBI, 2:7 BB:K (.239 OBP)
Aaron Hill v. Ervin Santana 4-for-19 (.211), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1:1 BB:K (.250 OBP)
Lyle Overbay v. Ervin Santana 3-for-19 (.158), 1 HR, 1 HR, 3:6 BB:K (.273 OBP)

Jon Lester v. Rangers You're not going to be benching Lester unless you're in the shallowest of leagues, but there are some red flags leading into Saturday's start. The Rangers are potent offensively, posting the fifth-most runs in all of baseball, and have been particularly effective against Lester, posting a .280/.342/.430 composite line in 117 plate appearances. Michael Young, Vladimir Guerrero, Josh Hamilton and Elvis Andrus have all hit over .300 against Lester in their careers.

Recommended Pickup

Hong-Chih Kuo, P, LAD Kuo is taking over as the Dodgers' temporary closer, replacing the ineffective Jonathan Broxton. How long the switch lasts is anybody's guess, but there's no hiding that Broxton has a 10.13 ERA and .310 BAA since the All-Star break and clearly has some things to work out. Kuo, meanwhile, boasts a sparkling 0.90 ERA and 49 strikeouts in 40 innings this season. If you're hungry for saves, Kuo is a nice short-term option.

Other recent recommendations: Starlin Castro, Felix Pie, Jeremy Guthrie, Chris Carter