Just so you all are aware (well, at least those of you that check this space out everyday), the next few weeks will be up and down in terms of content. My wife is 24 days away from her due date, and that will make things decidedly more hectic in terms of content to be put up.
I will still be doing my best to put fantasy updates through my Twitter feed during these sporadic days, so certainly follow me there @CWHager.
Last Night Rewind
- The Red Sox will be without Dustin Pedroia for six weeks and there are reports this morning that Victor Martinez will be placed on the DL with a fractured thumb. Both injuries could have season-long impacts simply because of their location. Look at how hard it has been for Brett Gardner and Jason Heyward to swing with injured thumbs. With Pedroia, he could lose foot speed and leg drive. Be aware.
- While he has still given up five home runs in his last 20 innings, Ricky Nolasco has now recorded back-to-back wins. The Marlins starter recorded a season-high nine strikeouts and has 17 over his last 14 innings. Nolasco certainly has shown in the past that he has the ability and now he seems to be turning a corner. Those that held on to him may eventually get some benefits.
- Tim Hudson out-dueled Stephen Strasburg last night in what was a decent pitching matchup. The Atlanta pitcher is now 6-2 in his last 10 starts and is 5-1 at home this season. Batters are hitting only .200 against him at Turner Field and he holds a 1.55 ERA there in 40.2 innings this season.
- It was not a pretty way to do it, but Ubaldo Jimenez recorded his 14th win of the season last night. Jimenez took a no-hitter in to the sixth inning but then gave up four hits in the frame. He added four walks on the night as well. He has now allowed 10 earned runs in his last 11.2 innings covering two starts. Jimenez continues to record strikeouts and is now 3-0 against the Padres in 2010.
- Paul Maholm will never be confused for a strikeout pitcher, but his numbers this season should generate interest in NL-only leagues and even some deep mixed leagues. Maholm worked eight innings yesterday and gave up just one run on seven hits. He struggled during his last outing in Texas, but chalk that up to one bad night. On a side note, he is now 3-0 against the Cubs this season.
- Some good and bad numbers against Derek Lowe posted by the Nationals. Look out for Adam Dunn as he is just 5-for-25 without a home run. Josh Willingham is only 4-for-22 and Ivan Rodriguez has a .240 batting average in 25 at-bats against the righty. Great numbers in the .407 of Adam Kennedy and .387 of Christian Guzman as well as the 7-for-13 from Nyjer Morgan.
- You may want to bench James Shields, even against a depleted Red Sox team. Shields is 1-6 in his last six starts at Fenway Park and has posted an ERA over 7.50. He has given up 29 runs on 52 hits in 34.2 innings at Fenway since 2007.
- Andrew McCutchen has struggled dramatically against Ted Lilly, going just 3-for-17. Good numbers for the Pirates otherwise. Lastings Milledge may not be a bad play here, as he is a .313 hitter in 16 at-bats. Lilly is 0-2 this season against the Pirates with a 4.35 ERA in three starts.
- Well if Nick Blackburn is going to get out of his funk, it will be at home. Blackburn has struggled all month, going 0-4 in five starts with an ERA over 12.00 and a .422 BAA. At home, though, he is 4-0 this season with a 3.19 ERA. His stretch this month did have one good home outing where he did not get a win but gave up just two runs over seven innings. Look to use the 8-for-19 of Miguel Cabrera or the 6-for-14 of Magglio Ordonez. Those are the only good numbers.
- Matt Cain is 0-5 in his last 10 starts against the Dodgers. While he has posted a 3.16 ERA against them, he has not been able to get the wins needed. You may want to hold back on the 2-for-13 of Manny Ramirez, but there are some good numbers. Andre Ethier is hitting .545 in 33 at-bats while James Loney, Rafael Furcal, and Matt Kemp are all hitting better than .300.
- Bad luck has been the problem for Gavin Floyd. He has given up a grand total of three earned runs in his last four starts covering 29 innings. The tough part of this start is that Floyd is 0-2 with an ERA over 8.00 in two starts against the Royals this year and he is still 1-5 on the road. Relatively strong numbers for all your Royals and no major red flags to sit.
- Yovani Gallardo has been strong this season even if the results are not quite there. Batters are hitting just .218 against him at home this season and only .183 overall in the month of June. The Astros have decent numbers against him, but nothing outstanding. Only Lance Berkman at 3-for-14 would be a sore spot.
- Two big benchings to be concerned with on the White Sox side. Gordon Beckham is 0-for-11 against Brian Bannister while Paul Konerko is 5-for-30. A.J. Pierzynski, Alexei Ramirez, and Alex Rios are all hitting better than .400 in at least 11 at-bats against Bannister. For his part, the Kansas City starter is 5-1 at home.
- I like the 16-for-49 numbers of Michael Young against Joel Pineiro, but the Angels starter has been lights out of late. He has allowed just three earned runs in his last 24.1 innings of work. Overall, he is 4-1 in his last five starts with a 3.05 ERA.
- Spot Starts: Pineiro, Blackburn, Lowe
- Outside of the 3-for-15 of Shane Victorino, the Phillies have good numbers against Aaron Harang. While Ryan Howard is just 4-for-15, he does have three home runs in the process.
- Most of the league has teed off on Wandy Rodriguez, and the Brewers are no exception. Only one in the lineup to be wary of is Prince Fielder. The First Baseman is 5-for-24 without a home run against the Houston starter. Otherwise, nothing but goodness. Have to like the 6-for-16 of Ryan Braun, and he adds three home runs as well.
- Jair Jurrjens is slated to take the ball for the first time since suffering a rough hamstring injury. He pitched well in his bullpen session over the weekend and is set to take his place in the rotation. The Braves have not fully decided if he will replace Kawakami or Medlen in the rotation, but the safe bet is that he is in there to stay. If you can hold off on him this start do so, just to make sure he is healthy.
- Ugly numbers for the White Sox against Zack Greinke. Paul Konerko is 7-for-51 with 15 strikeouts and Alexei Ramirez is only 3-for-20. While Carlos Quentin is just 4-for-17, he does have three home runs against the Kansas City starter.
- Outside of Adrian Beltre and his 7-for-16 mark, there is no one on the Red Sox worth a start against Matt Garza. Garza has owned the Boston lineup, holding them to a .214 average as a team even when you add in the numbers of Beltre. David Ortiz is 4-for-21 but does have three home runs against Garza lifetime. No player besides Beltre that will start is above .222.
- Spot Starts: Richard, Volstad, Oliver