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Friday Lineup Card: Angel in the Infield

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 Friday's matchups (all times Eastern):

Marlins (Javier Vazquez - R) at Phillies (Roy Oswalt - R), 7:05
Brewers (Chris Narveson - L) at Nationals (Tom Gorzelanny - L), 7:05
Orioles (Zach Britton - L) at Indians (Justin Masterson - R), 7:05
Rangers (Matt Harrison - L) at Yankees (Ivan Nova - R), 7:05
Pirates (Charlie Morton - R) at Reds (Bronson Arroyo - R), 7:10
Blue Jays (Brett Cecil - L) at Red Sox (John Lackey - R), 7:10
Twins (Nick Blackburn - R) at Rays (Wade Davis - R), 7:10
Mets (D.J. Carrasco - R) at Braves (Derek Lowe - R), 7:30
Padres (Aaron Harang - R) at Astros (J.A. Happ - L), 8:05
Mariners (Erik Bedard - L) at Royals (Luke Hochevar - R), 8:10
Angels (Jered Weaver - R) at White Sox (Phil Humber - R), 8:10
Cubs (Matt Garza - R) at Rockies (Jhoulys Chacin - R, 8:40
Giants (Matt Cain - R) at Diamondbacks (Daniel Hudson - R), 9:40
Tigers (Rick Porcello - R) at Athletics (Brandon McCarthy - R), 10:05
Cardinals (Kyle Lohse - R) at Dodgers (Jon Garland - R), 10:10

Day Game After a Night Game: None

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)

Wilton Lopez, RP, HOU (elbow) - Dealing with soreness; will be examined soon
Chris Johnson, 3B, HOU (arm) - Expected back Friday
Aroldis Chapman, RP, CIN (arm) - Has inflammation; will rest a couple days
Chris Snyder, C, PIT (back) - Made season debut Thursday (0-for-2, BB, K)
Franklin Morales, RP, COL (ankle) - Left Thursday's game after getting ankle stepped on
Freddy Sanchez, 2B, SF (shoulder) - Sat Wednesday, off day Thursday, maybe good by Friday
Andres Torres, OF, SF (Achilles) - Could return by Saturday if all goes well
Mark DeRosa, OF, SF (wrist) - Scratched Wednesday, but was supposedly able to pinch-hit
Chris Young, SP, NYM (biceps) - Had a good Thursday bullpen; on track for Sunday
Carlos Pena, 1B, CHC (thumb) - Expected back Friday
Kosuke Fukudome, OF, CHC (hamstring) - Questionable for Friday
Brandon Phillips, 2B, CIN (groin) - Pulled Wednesday, but expected back Friday

Magglio Ordonez, OF, DET (ankle) - Still out Thursday, but could go Friday
Joseph Smith, RP, CLE (abdomen) - Expected to be activated from DL Friday
Chone Figgins, 2B, SEA (thumb) - Returned Thursday

Players on the DL

Chase Utley, 2B, PHI (knee) - Ran for first time Thursday
LaTroy Hawkins, RP, MIL (shoulder) - Heading to Triple-A to continue rehab
Johnny Cueto, SP, CIN (shoulder) - Beginning rehab assignment Saturday
Fred Lewis, OF, CIN (oblique) - Will begin rehab in Double-A; no certain timetable
Aaron Cook, SP, COL (shoulder) - Moved to 60-day DL
Jay Gibbons, OF, LAD (eye) - Still having vision problems
Brian Tallet, RP, STL (wrist) - Having a pin placed in non-throwing hand
Ubaldo Jimenez, SP, COL (thumb) - On track for Monday start
Henry Alberto Rodriguez, RP, WAS (neck) - Headed to Triple-A in rehab assignment
Stephen Strasburg, SP, WAS (elbow) - Hasn't thrown from a mound yet
Brad Lidge, RP, PHI (shoulder) - Could start throwing (not pitching) in late April, early May
Domonic Brown, OF, PHI (wrist) - Could go on rehab assignment by end of April
Kyle Blanks, OF, SD (elbow) - Started rehab assignment Thursday in Double-A
Joe Thatcher, RP, SD (shoulder) - Played catch for second straight day Wednesday

Joe Mauer, C, MIN (legs) - Has, um, bilateral leg weakness; placed on DL
Evan Longoria, 3B, TAM (oblique) - Feeling good and ahead of schedule
Pedro Feliciano, RP, NYY (shoulder) - May have season-ending surgery
Damaso Marte, RP, NYY (shoulder) - Likely out for the year
Brandon Morrow, SP, TOR (elbow) - Making final rehab start Sunday
Robinson Tejeda, RP, KC (shoulder) - DLed with inflammation
Ryan Perry, RP, DET (eye) - Starting rehab and will return next week
Jake Peavy, SP, CHW (shoulder) - Had efficient six-inning rehab start Wednesday
Andrew Bailey, RP, OAK (forearm) - Threw bullpen Thursday
Dustin McGowan, RP, TOR (shoulder) - Faced live batters at minor league complex Wednesday
Matt Albers, RP, BOS (back) - Playing long toss; likely will return when eligible, April 23
Joel Pineiro, SP, LAA (shoulder) - Threw bullpen Thursday
Erick Aybar, SS, LAA (ribs) - Hopes to return early next week
J.J. Hardy, SS, BAL (oblique) - Placed on DL
Grady Sizemore, OF, CLE (knee) - Continuing rehab at Triple-A
Justin Duchscherer, SP, BAL (hip, back) - Won't return April 21, as projected; may not even be throwing

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

Called Up
Al Alburqueque, RP, DET
Alan Johnson, SP, COL
Blake Wood, RP, KC
Brad Bergesen, SP, BAL
Fernando Salas, RP, STL
Eduardo Sanchez, RP, STL

Sent Down
Robbie Weinhardt, RP, DET
Jason Jaramillo, C, PIT
Brad Mills, RP, TOR
Frank Hermann, RP, CLE
Greg Reynolds, SP, COL

Placed on DL (15-day unless otherwise noted)
Joe Mauer, C, MIN (retro to April 13)
Robinson Tejeda, RP, KC (retro to April 13)
J.J. Hardy, SS, BAL
Brian Tallet, RP, STL
Bryan Augenstein, RP, STL

Activated from DL
Chris Snyder, C, PIT

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

Colorado - Huston Street got pulled in Game 1 of Thursday's doubleheader after giving up a two-run homer, then putting two men on. Matt Lindstrom came in, put one more guy on, but got the final two outs for his second save. It appears the Rockies are more than willing to turn to Lindstrom if Street is ineffective or tired. Street had been unreal to start the year, so this is forgivable.

Minnesota - Both Joe Nathan and Matt Capps got stuck with blown saves Thursday. Nathan isn't particularly threatened here for the time being.

Baltimore - Kevin Gregg blew the save Thursday, then Michael Gonzalez took the loss. Possibly the most inexplicable closer in the game (that is to say, it's inexplicable that he's a closer), Gregg is 1-for-2 in save opportunities.

Cincinnati - Francisco Cordero had pitched two days in a row, so Nick Masset came on when Aroldis Chapman ran into trouble in the eighth on Wednesday, and he was hit with his third blown save and third loss already, walking three and allowing two hits over 1.1 innings. Cordero is still the guy here, obviously.

San Francisco - Brian Wilson picked up his second clean save in a row Wednesday.

Key Matchups


Hanley Ramirez v. Roy Oswalt - 11-for-28 (.393), 3 HR, 7 RBI, 1:5 BB:K, 1.235 OPS
Wes Helms v. Roy Oswalt - 7-for-24 (.292), 1 HR, 5 RBI, 2:6 BB:K, .954 OPS (four doubles)
Placido Polanco v. Javier Vazquez - 20-for-57 (.351), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 3:3 BB:K, .875 OPS
Ross Gload v. Javier Vazquez - 16-for-35 (.457), 1 HR, 7 RBI, 1:4 BB:K, 1.215 OPS (career cycle)
Raul Ibanez v. Javier Vazquez - 8-for-25 (.320), 4 HR, 6 RBI, 2:6 BB:K, 1.170 OPS
Ryan Howard v. Javier Vazquez - 5-for-15 (.333), 3 HR, 5 RBI, 3:2 BB:K, 1.444 OPS
Ryan Braun v. Tom Gorzelanny - 9-for-19 (.474), 3 HR, 9 RBI, 6:2 BB:K, 1.600 OPS
Luke Scott v. Justin Masterson - 6-for-13 (.462), 0 HR, 4 RBI, 1:0 BB:K, 1.192 OPS
Jonny Gomes v. Charlie Morton - 5-for-13 (.385), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 1:1 BB:K, .813 OPS
Scott Rolen v. Charlie Morton - 6-for-13 (.462), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1:0 BB:K, 1.423 OPS
Carl Crawford v. Brett Cecil - 4-for-12 (.333), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, 1.167 OPS (career cycle)
Adam Lind v. John Lackey - 10-for-18 (.556), 0 HR, 5 RBI, 0:0 BB:K, 1.389 OPS (five doubles)
Kelly Shoppach v. Nick Blackburn - 7-for-12 (.583), 2 HR, 2 RBI, 0:2 BB:K, 1.750 OPS
Johnny Damon v. Nick Blackburn - 7-for-24 (.292), 2 HR, 6 RBI, 2:0 BB:K, .971 OPS
Daniel Murphy v. Derek Lowe - 4-for-12 (.333), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 0:0 BB:K, 1.083 OPS
Bill Hall v. Aaron Harang - 17-for-47 (.362), 3 HR, 10 RBI, 3:9 BB:K, 1.135 OPS
Carlos Lee v. Aaron Harang - 16-for-40 (.400), 1 HR, 8 RBI, 1:5 BB:K, 1.030 OPS
Juan Pierre v. Jered Weaver - 10-for-23 (.435), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 2:3 BB:K, 1.089 OPS
Mark Teahen v. Jered Weaver - 9-for-21 (.429), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 1:2 BB:K, .911 OPS
Jose Lopez v. Matt Garza - 6-for-18 (.333), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:3 BB:K, .833 OPS
Stephen Drew v. Matt Cain - 9-for-27 (.333), 3 HR, 7 RBI, 1:4 BB:K, 1.098 OPS
David DeJesus v. Rick Porcello - 4-for-12 (.333), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .917 OPS
Victor Martinez v. Brandon McCarthy - 6-for-14 (.429), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2:2 BB:K, 1.429 OPS (four doubles)
Brandon Inge v. Brandon McCarthy - 4-for-12 (.333), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .917 OPS
Magglio Ordonez v. Brandon McCarthy - 4-for-10 (.400), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 1:1 BB:K, .855 OPS
Albert Pujols v. Jon Garland - 5-for-13 (.385), 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2:1 BB:K, 1.313 OPS
Gerald Laird v. Jon Garland - 4-for-11 (.364), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, 1.091 OPS
Aaron Miles v. Kyle Lohse - 5-for-12 (.417), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .962 OPS

Derek Lowe v. Mets - Lowe has absolutely owned these Mets hitters, holding them to a meager .234/.275/.346 line over 203 plate appearances. He gets the Mets at a great time, too, as things couldn't possibly be going worse for them right now.

Justin Masterson v. Orioles - Masterson has held the Orioles down quite well in his young career, although he's never seen Mark Reynolds, a whole 'nother breed of hitter. Still, no current Oriole aside from Felix Pie has homered off Masterson, and as a whole they're hitting just .253 off him. Just one area of concern: a 16:13 K:BB ratio.

Bronson Arroyo v. Pirates - These Pirates hitters have a pitiful .143/.237/.202 line against Arroyo over 99 plate appearances; it should come as no surprise that his career numbers against Pittsburgh's long-weak offense are mighty fine, with a 3.01 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. With four Pirates in the cold section, Arroyo is as trustworthy as Javier Vazquez is terrible.

John Lackey v. Blue Jays - These Toronto hitters just can't hit the eminently hittable Lackey very well, totaling a .246/.321/.385 line against him, and that's heavily buoyed by Adam Lind, who has a full third of the crew's hits off Lackey. One funny line that didn't make it into the hot/cold section because I couldn't decide where it belongs: Jose Bautista is just 2-for-11 (.185) against Lackey, but both hits were homers and he also has five walks, so he has a 1.165 OPS to go with that .185 average.

Jered Weaver v. White Sox - Chicago's hitters have a respectable-ish .273 average off Weaver, but it's quite empty - just one (one!) home run in 142 plate appearances and 30 strikeouts to eight walks have helped Weaver hold these White Sox hitters to a .677 OPS.

Matt Cain v. Diamondbacks - Aside from that pesky Stephen Drew, who's homered off him three times, Cain has dominated the division-rival D-Backs in his career, holding them to a Drew-inflated .231/.311/.395. In his career against Arizona, Cain is 6-4 with a 3.28 ERA and 1.13 WHIP.

Kyle Lohse v. Dodgers - Rounding out the very heavy list of hot pitchers, Lohse has allowed just a .252/.281/.659 line to these Dodger hitters with an absolutely ridiculous (especially for Kyle Lohse) 34:3 K:BB.


Jimmy Rollins v. Javier Vazquez - 11-for-60 (.183), 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2:14 BB:K, .510 OPS
Prince Fielder v. Tom Gorzelanny - 6-for-27 (.222), 0 HR, 3 RBI, 2:7 BB:K, .535 OPS
Rickie Weeks v. Tom Gorzelanny - 2-for-19 (.105), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 6:3 BB:K, .451 OPS
Vladimir Guerrero v. Justin Masterson - 3-for-14, 0 HR, 1 RBI, 3:2 BB:K, .603 OPS
Nick Markakis v. Justin Masterson - 2-for-13 (.154), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:2 BB:K, .421 OPS
Brian Roberts v. Justin Masterson - 3-for-11 (.273), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:4 BB:K, .523 OPS
Joey Votto v. Charlie Morton - 1-for-10 (.100), 0 HR, 4 RBI, 1:4 BB:K, .367 OPS
Ronny Cedeno v. Bronson Arroyo - 5-for-23 (.217), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2:8 BB:K, .661 OPS
Ryan Doumit v. Bronson Arroyo - 1-for-10 (.100), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:0 BB:K, .350 OPS
Garrett Jones v. Bronson Arroyo - 2-for-11 (.182), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K, .432 OPS
Andrew McCutchen v. Bronson Arroyo - 0-for-9 (.000), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 3:0 BB:K, .250 OPS
Aaron Hill v. John Lackey - 3-for-21 (.143), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 2:4 BB:K, .440 OPS
John McDonald v. John Lackey - 3-for-19 (.158), 1 HR, 2 RBI, 0:4 BB:K, .466 OPS
Corey Patterson v. John Lackey - 2-for-15 (.133), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:5 BB:K, .267 OPS
Carlos Beltran v. Derek Lowe - 7-for-37 (.189), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 5:5 BB:K, .468 OPS
Willie Harris v. Derek Lowe - 7-for-32 (.219), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K, .492 OPS
Angel Pagan v. Derek Lowe - 4-for-18 (.222), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 0:2 BB:K, .556 OPS
Jose Reyes v. Derek Lowe - 3-for-16 (.188), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 2:1 BB:K, .528 OPS
Melky Cabrera v. Erik Bedard - 2-for-16 (.125), 0 HR, 2 RBI, 2:4 BB:K, .410 OPS
A.J. Pierzynski v. Jered Weaver - 5-for-18 (.278), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2:1 BB:K, .628 OPS
Paul Konerko v. Jered Weaver - 1-for-14 (.071), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:3 BB:K, .138 OPS
Alexi Ramirez v. Jered Weaver - 1-for-10 (.100), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:3 BB:K, .300 OPS
Chris Young v. Matt Cain - 4-for-21 (.190), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:6 BB:K, .465 OPS
Miguel Montero v. Matt Cain - 4-for-19 (.211), 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1:4 BB:K, .618 OPS
Kelly Johnson v. Matt Cain - 3-for-18 (.167), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 1:3 BB:K, .377 OPS
Jhonny Peralta v. Brandon McCarthy - 1-for-18 (.056), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 2:6 BB:K, .198 OPS
Lance Berkman v. Jon Garland - 5-for-22 (.227), 1 HR, 4 RBI, 2:5 BB:K, .701 OPS
Skip Schumaker v. Jon Garland - 2-for-13 (.154), 0 HR, 0 RBI, 0:1 BB:K, .385 OPS
Juan Uribe v. Kyle Lohse - 2-for-15 (.133), 0 HR, 1 RBI, 0:3 BB:K, .321 OPS

Charlie Morton v. Reds - When you have a 5.79 career ERA, you're gonna find yourself in the cold section a lot. These Reds have a combined .316/.382/.474 line off Morton, and he's walked one more batter than he's struck out. Keep Morton far from your lineup in general, though.

Javier Vazquez v. Phillies - Well, there are four Phillies in the hot section, which should tell you something. The combined line: .303/.340/.520 with 11 homers in 244 at-bats. And that's against the good Vazquez of the past, not the terrible present-day Vazquez.

Aaron Harang v. Astros - Harang is poised for a nice bounceback season, but he could hit a bump in the road on Friday against Houston, as these Astros hitters have a combined .323/.358/.557 line off him over 181 plate appearances. The only Astro who qualifies for the cold section against Harang is pitcher Wandy Rodriguez. For real.

Recommended Pickup

Angel Sanchez, SS, HOU - Quick, who was the top-ranked second baseman on Yahoo going into Thursday games? That's right, it was Sanchez, who qualifies at second as well as shortstop, and is hitting a mighty shiny .353 even after Thursday's 0-fer. He's got 11 runs scored, eight RBI, a homer and a steal - plenty of help for your roto team there - and although this is more likely an issue of sample size rather than emerging talent, you could do worse at middle infield than riding the hot hand.

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