Fantasy Baseball: Week 9 Start 'Em or Sit 'Em Breakdown

Jonathan IrwinContributor IIMay 27, 2013

Fantasy Baseball: Week 9 Start 'Em or Sit 'Em Breakdown

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    The fantasy baseball is filled with difficult decisions. So instead of taking everything on yourself, sit back, relax and let us try to make your life a little easier.

    After an up-and-down period for many a starter, this week's decisions won't be easy. And that's not mentioning guys coming off the DL or coming up from the minors.

    Looking toward Week 9, here's a breakdown of some of the biggest start 'em, sit 'em candidates you need to worry about.

Jon Lester

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    Scheduled Start: Thursday, May 30, at Phillies

    It's been a rough couple of starts for Lester, giving up nine earned runs over his last 13.0 innings pitched. While he escaped with a no-decision in Saturday's start, he took his first loss of the season after his start Monday.

    Lester has been lights out to kick off the season, and things can't go perfectly forever. It was inevitable that he would suffer a week like this one.

    Just keep in mind that the last time Lester turned in a bad stretch of starts this season he rebounded with his one-hitter against Toronto.

    With a start against the offensively challenged Phillies coming up, you gotta keep your faith in Lester.

    Verdict: Start 'Em

Scott Kazmir

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    Scheduled Start: Thursday, May 30, vs. Reds

    Kazmir had an up-and-down week. Tuesday he had his worst start since his season debut, giving up five earned runs across just 3.0 innings. Then he bounced back with a strong start against Boston, going 5.0 strong while striking out six.

    Despite pitching well against Boston, Kazmir still gave up four walks. His WHIP on the season sits at 1.650.

    The 29-year-old draws one start this week against the hot-hitting Reds, a team he's never faced in his career.

    Kazmir is 2-0 at home this season, but the Reds pose a challenge. If he walks batters like he did against Boston, he'll be toast.

    While I'm pulling for Kazmir to rediscover his magic this season, he's yet to show enough consistency to be trusted against a team like Cincinnati.

    Verdict: Sit 'Em

Kevin Gausman

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    Scheduled Start: Tuesday, May 28, at Nationals and Sunday, June 2, vs. Tigers

    After a hot-start to the season at Double-A, Kevin Gausman was awarded with a call-up to the Major League club.

    It wasn't a terrible debut for the promising young gun, giving up four earned runs across 5.0 innings. The most positive note is that he struck out five and walked just two.

    Gausman is earning a lot of attention, and it's well deserved. The 22-year-old has tons of potential. It's no surprise he's making his debut so early.

    While I'm rooting for Gausman, it doesn't mean I trust him just yet. He'll draw two really tough assignments this week, facing the Nationals on the road followed by Miguel Cabrera and the Tigers at home.

    Definitely keep your eye on Gausman, but don't get any ideas about starting him until he starts showing signs of consistency.

    Verdict: Sit 'Em

Jered Weaver

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    Predicted Start: Wednesday or Thursday, May 29 or May 30, vs. Dodgers

    Usually starting Weaver would be a no-brainer. But the big mystery this week is what condition he'll will be in, creating question marks for fantasy owners.

    The Angels ace has made just two starts this season after being sidelined in April with a fracture to his left elbow.

    According to CBS Sports' Mike Axisa, Weaver is set to rejoin L.A.'s rotation sometime this week—either Wednesday or Thursday.

    While you always want to be cautious with a player coming off the DL, keep in mind Weaver's injury wasn't to his pitching arm. As long as he's not feeling any pain, his mechanics should be solid and his pitching strong.

    Consider Weaver a must-start once again in fantasy.

    Verdict: Start 'Em

Jeremy Guthrie

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    Scheduled Start: Thursday, May 30, at Cardinals

    Guthrie enjoyed a fantastic start to the season, but it looks like the wheels could be falling off the bus. After starting the season with a 2.28 ERA, the veteran hurler has since coughed up 17 runs over his last three starts.

    The 34-year-old has found success in the AL before, and it looked like that's what was going on to kick off the season. Now he's starting to show his old self, and it's a scary sight.

    Guthrie will pull a tough assignment this week, taking on the Cardinals on the road. While the right-hander still has some upside in fantasy, it's high time owners started looking elsewhere.

    Verdict: Sit 'Em