RotoWire Partners

The Lineup Card: Small Slate

Andrew Fiorentino

Managing hockey editor, talent wrangler, football columnist, FSWA's 2015 fantasy hockey writer of the year. Twitter: @akfiorentino

Projected Starters - A look at Thursday's matchups:

Athletics (Dallas Braden - R) at Yankees (CC Sabathia - L), 1:05 ET
Red Sox (Daisuke Matsuzaka - R) at Orioles (Brad Bergesen - R), 7:05 ET
Mets (Johan Santana - L) at Braves (Tim Hudson - R), 7:10 ET
Phillies (Joe Blanton - R) at Rockies (Jhoulys Chacin - R), 7:10 ET
Tigers (Justin Verlander - R) at Twins (Scott Baker - R), 8:10 ET
Indians (Josh Tomlin - R) at Mariners (Doug Fister - R), 10:10 ET

Day Game After Night Game: OAK, NYY

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)
Troy Tulowitzki, SS, COL (groin) - Returning to the lineup Wednesday after missing two games
Ian Kinsler, 2B, TEX (groin) - Returning from the DL Wednesday
Jose Reyes, SS, NYM (oblique) - Still out; no word on return
Brandon Phillips, 2B, CIN (wrist) - Still out of the lineup Wednesday
Brian Roberts, 2B, BAL (hip) - Looked fine picking up two hits Wednesday, but will miss a game now and again
Angel Pagan, OF, NYM (wrist) - Out again Wednesday
Jay Bruce, OF, CIN (abdomen) - Out for the second straight game Wednesday
Gordon Beckham, 3B, CHW (hand) - Could return to the lineup by Friday
Marlon Byrd, OF, CHC (leg) - Out Wednesday with soreness
Adam LaRoche, 1B, ARI (knee) - Was available to pinch-hit Tuesday and expected to start Wednesday
Jason Kubel, OF, MIN (wrist) - Out Wednesday after leaving Tuesday's game; possibly out through the weekend
Matt LaPorta, OF, CLE (hip) - Out again Wednesday
Jim Thome, DH, MIN (back) - In Wednesday's lineup
Lyle Overbay, 1B, TOR (illness) - Missing fifth straight game Wednesday
Brian Fuentes, RP, MIN (back) - Locked up while warming up Tuesday and will be held out a few days
Russell Martin, C, LAD (hip) - Having a CT scan Wednesday
Ryan Theriot, SS, LAD (knee) - Expects to be in Wednesday's lineup
Tom Gorzelanny, SP, CHC (hand) - Left Wednesday after being hit with a line drive
Freddy Garcia, SP, CHW (back) - Says he's good to go for next week's start
Orlando Hudson, 2B, MIN (foot) - Out Wednesday; no word yet on tests
Jeremy Bonderman, SP, DET (ribs) - Expects to make Friday start
Jeff Baker, 2B, CHC (heel) - Scratched Wednesday with soreness
Gerald Laird, C, DET (back) - Hopes to return Wednesday
Cristian Guzman, SS, TEX (quad) - Set to be activated from DL Wednesday

Players on the DL
Rafael Furcal, SS, LAD (back) - Could return to the lineup as soon as Friday if rehab goes well
Carlos Silva, SP, CHC (illness) - Will return to majors next week if Wednesday rehab start goes well
Carlos Guillen, OF, DET (knee) - Eligible to return, but no word on when
David DeJesus, OF, KAN (thumb) - Moved to 60-day DL
Vicente Padilla, SP, LAD (neck) - May return to the rotation Monday
Luke Hochevar, SP, KAN (elbow) - Moved to the 60-day DL
Dustin Nippert, RP, TEX (head) - Could be activated by Friday
Nick Punto, SS, MIN (hamstring) - Moved around on the field Tuesday and hopes to return when eligible Sept. 5
Scott Feldman, SP, TEX (knee) - Making rehab appearance Wednesday and will likely return Sept. 7.
Jason Varitek, C, BOS (foot) - Having foot examined Wednesday, and if all is well, will start rehab this weekend
Ross Gload, 1B, PHI (groin) - Beginning short rehab assignment Wednesday, targeting Friday return
Russ Springer, RP, CIN (hip) - Moved to 60-day DL
Shawn Kelley, RP, SEA (elbow) - Having exploratory surgery Wednesday
Kanekoa Texeira, RP, TEX (elbow) - Could start throwing by Friday
Grant Balfour, RP, TAM (ribs) - Simulated game Wednesday went well; may return Friday
Brian Moehler, SP, HOU (groin) - Transferred to 60-day DL
Danys Baez, RP, PHI (back) - Played long toss this week, but no rehab assignment scheduled yet
Bobby Seay, RP, DET (shoulder) - Still trying to decide on next step; surgery would be career-threatening
Matt Daley, RP, COL (shoulder) - Will throw this weekend at Triple-A and could return next week

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

Activated from the DL
Ian Kinsler, 2B, TEX
Edgar Renteria, SS, SFO
Matt Lindstrom, RP, HOU
Dennys Reyes, RP, STL
Jeff Keppinger, 2B, HOU
Josh Fields, 3B, KAN
Gil Meche, SP, KAN
Jeff Suppan, SP, STL
Leo Rosales, RP, ARI
Oscar Salazar, OF, SDP
Cristian Guzman, SS, TEX
Dan Runzler, RP, SFO
Jason Bulger, RP, LAA
Brian Stokes, RP, LAA
Eric Patterson, OF, BOS
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C, BOS
Lance Berkman, 1B, NYY
Taylor Buchholz, RP, COL

Sent Down
Andy Sonnanstine, RP, TAM
Enrique Gonzalez, RP, DET

Called Up
Jenrry Mejia, SP, NYM
Lucas Duda, OF, NYM
Trevor Plouffe, SS, MIN
Jose Morales, C, MIN
Brian Bogusevic, OF, HOU
Matt Downs, 2B, HOU
Henry Villar, RP, HOU
Wesley Wright, SP, HOU
Carlos Carrasco, SP, CLE
Yonder Alonso, 1B, CIN
Carlos Fisher, RP, CIN
Corky Miller, C, CIN
Robby Weinhardt, RP, DET
Max St. Pierre, C, DET
Mat Gamel, 3B, MIL
Jeremy Jeffress, RP, MIL
Carlos Villanueva, RP, MIL
Brad Hawpe, OF, TAM
Rocco Baldelli, OF, TAM
Jeremy Hellickson, RP, TAM
Dioner Navarro, C, TAM
Desmond Jennings, OF, TAM
Robert Andino, SS, BAL
Nolan Reimold, OF, BAL
Brandon Snyder, 1B, BAL
Jordan Brown, 1B, CLE
Jensen Lewis, RP, CLE
J.P. Arencibia, C, TOR
David Purcey, RP, TOR
Alejandro De Aza, OF, CHW
Tyler Flowers, C, CHW
Gregory Infante, RP, CHW
John Bowker, OF, PIT
Lucas May, C, KAN
Matt Pagnozzi, C, STL
Nick Stavinoha, OF, STL
Paul Hoover, C, PHI
Justin James, RP, OAK
Tony Abreu, 2B, ARI
Brandon Allen, 1B, ARI
Carlos Rosa, RP, ARI
Ross Wolf, RP, OAK
Jean Boscan, C, ATL
Mike Dunn, RP, ATL
Freddie Freeman, 1B, ATL
Kenshin Kawakami, RP, ATL
Scott Proctor, RP, ATL
Cory Luebke, SP, SDP
Ryan Webb, RP, SDP
Chris Nelson, SS, COL
Jorge Sosa, RP, FLA
Chris Hatcher, C, FLA
Pedro Strop, RP, TEX
Wilson Ramos, C, MIN
Danny Espinosa, SS, WAS
Jonathan Albaldejo, RP, NYY
Chad Moeller, C, NYY
Greg Golson, OF, NYY
Chris Stewart, C, SDP
Dustin Richardson, RP, BOS

Jeff Francoeur, OF, TEX
Joaquin Arias, 2B, NYM (also activated)

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

Arizona - Juan Gutierrez, he of the 6.09 ERA, converted his second save in a row Tuesday against San Diego. Expect a blowup sooner rather than later and continued musical chairs in the Diamondbacks' bullpen. Carlos Rosa and Leo Rosales could be in the mix if they pitch well, but really, anyone in that bullpen has a shot.

Baltimore - The Koji Uehara Show continued Tuesday as he went 1.2 innings for his fifth save. Michael Gonzalez recorded one out and a hold, and stands to benefit if Uehara begins to struggle.

Chicago White Sox - It's been a heck of a ride for Chris Sale this summer, from being drafted, to being signed quickly and rocketing up through the minors, to collecting his first big-league save Wednesday against Cleveland. It didn't come without a bit of drama, as Sale walked two batters after previously having walked just five in his first nine MLB innings, but he got the job done. The role still belongs to Bobby Jenks, though, no matter how good of an argument you can make against him; it's likely he was simply unavailable after pitching three out of the last four days.

Houston - Brandon Lyon picked up his 11th save with a clean ninth Wednesday against the Cardinals, but now Matt Lindstrom is back looking over his shoulder. Lindstrom also worked a clean inning in his return, but Lyon converted 10 save opportunities without a hitch over the last month (except for a five-run explosion in a non-save situation), so it's questionable how quickly Lindstrom will regain the job.

Minnesota - Matt Capps has his job back for a couple days with Brian Fuentes hurting, but Fuentes will regain his title of the Twins' top mediocre closer soon. Capps picked up his seventh save as a Twin on Tuesday.

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


Marcus Thames v. Dallas Braden - 5-for-13 (.385), 2 HR, 6 RBI, 0:4 BB:K, .385 OBP
Marco Scutaro v. Brad Bergesen - 5-for-13 (.385), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .357 OBP
J.D. Drew v. Brad Bergesen - 5-for-12 (.417), 2 HR, 4 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .417 OBP
Brian Roberts v. Daisuke Matsuzaka - 7-for-15 (.467), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 3:4 BB:K, .556 OBP
Matt Diaz v. Johan Santana - 16-for-30 (.533), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:3 BB:K, .548 OBP
Carlos Beltran* v. Tim Hudson - 24-for-63 (.381), 4 HR, 15 RBI, 9:8 BB:K, .458 OBP
Angel Pagan* v. Tim Hudson - 6-for-12 (.500), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:0 BB:K, .500 OBP
Melvin Mora v. Joe Blanton - 5-for-14 (.357), 2 HR, 4 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .357 OBP
Miguel Cabrera v. Scott Baker - 9-for-27 (.333), 2 HR, 6 RBI, 3:6 BB:K, .387 OBP
Ramon Santiago v. Scott Baker - 8-for-21 (.381), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 2:4 BB:K, .458 OBP
Joe Mauer v. Justin Verlander - 15-for-42 (.357), 3 HR, 9 RBI, 8:7 BB:K, .460 OBP
Jim Thome* v. Justin Verlander - 11-for-43 (.256), 7 HR, 11 RBI, 14:11 BB:K, .439 OBP
Jason Kubel* v. Justin Verlander - 12-for-31 (.387), 0 HR, 9 RBI, 4:6 BB:K, .444 OBP
Denard Span v. Justin Verlander - 11-for-26 (.423), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:2 BB:K, .423 OBP

CC Sabathia v. Athletics - With all due respect to opposing starter Dallas Braden, it looks more like CC's mound. Sabathia has dominated the Oakland hitters, holding them to a meager .220 average and .657 OPS, with a 40:12 K:BB. He's seen the A's twice this year and thrown 15.2 innings while allowing four earned runs. The Yanks' ace has also saved his best work for the fans at new Yankee Stadium, going 10-0 with a 2.46 ERA and 1.06 WHIP at home.


Rajai Davis v. CC Sabathia - 2-for-18 (.111), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:1 BB:K, .158 OBP
Kevin Kouzmanoff v. CC Sabathia - 4-for-17 (.235), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:7 BB:K, .235 OBP
Nick Markakis v. Daisuke Matsuzaka - 2-for-15 (.133), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 5:4 BB:K, .350 OBP
Omar Infante v. Johan Santana - 7-for-36 (.194), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 1:8 BB:K, .231 OBP
Martin Prado v. Johan Santana - 3-for-18 (.167), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:2 BB:K, .167 OBP
Melky Cabrera v. Johan Santana - 3-for-15 (.200), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:1 BB:K, .294 OBP
Nate McLouth v. Johan Santana - 2-for-15 (.133), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2:2 BB:K, .235 OBP
David Wright v. Tim Hudson - 10-for-49 (.204), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 5:3 BB:K, .291 OBP
Brandon Inge v. Scott Baker - 8-for-40 (.200), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:8 BB:K, .214 OBP
Michael Cuddyer v. Justin Verlander - 6-for-40 (.150), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:10 BB:K, .190 OBP
J.J. Hardy v. Justin Verlander - 2-for-11 (.182), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K, .250 OBP

Recommended Pickup

Lucas Duda, OF, NYM - We could go with quite a few of the September call-ups on the list above, and probably will indeed go through many of them in the recommended pickups to come, but Duda is one of few players called up Wednesday who has the opportunity to contribute immediately and play a lot. With Jeff Francoeur traded to Texas and Angel Pagan nursing an injury, Carlos Beltran is the only mainstay left in the Mets' outfield, and he's gonna need his off days as well. The 24-year-old Duda has had a great year across Double-A and Triple-A, hitting .304/.398/.569 with 23 homers, 40 doubles and 87 RBI. He's limited in the field, but the Mets desperately need some power, and if Duda comes up and hits immediately (he's in Wednesday's lineup), they're likely to roll with him pretty often down the stretch.

Other Recent Recommendations: Melvin Mora, Brandon Lyon, Jim Johnson, Koji Uehara