Jon Lester is sporting a 2.35 ERA over his last four starts, having not allowed more than three earned runs in a start during that stretch. He dominated Toronto in his last time out, allowing just one run over eight innings. Corey Patterson could see action here, as he is a .389 hitter against Lester in 18 at-bats. Jose Molina is 5-for-15 and John McDonald checks in at .294. Aaron Hill is a pathetic 2-for-32. You likely have better options for most of your Blue Jays.
As ugly as he has been, there is likely a spot in the lineup for Darnell McDonald and his "fun with small sample size" 5-for-7 mark against Brett Cecil. Odds are Josh Reddick grabs a seat, but it should be the 2-for-10 of J.D. Drew. David Ortiz is just 2-for-12, but Marco Scutaro is 5-for-9. Kevin Youkilis is 4-for-10, but not likely available tonight after leaving yesterday's game.
In 25 June innings, Wandy Rodriguez gave up only five earned runs (1.80 ERA) while putting up a 1.20 WHIP. Matt Diaz has hit .300 against Rodriguez in 20 at-bats and Lyle Overbay is 5-for-12. Otherwise, not much to report. Look to avoid the 2-for-11 of Andrew McCutchen and the 1-for-10 of Garrett Jones.
Jeff Karstens was as effective as Rodriguez in June, posting a 1.52 ERA in 41.1 innings of work to support his 3-0 record. He has a 1.08 WHIP for the season, not something likely sustainable but it does make him an interesting spot play here. Hunter Pence is 5-for-13 (.385), while Carlos Lee is 4-for-14.
There are some questions surrounding Jhoulys Chacin and if he is fully healthy. He is experiencing tightness in his right forearm and it did push his start back to today. This should make daily league owners tentative, especially in head-to-head formats. Chacin had been dominant in his three starts prior to his last outing against the Cubs, but take note and be cautious.
Remember that Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez were both taken out of games this weekend and should be avoided tonight. Ryan Spilborghs is 5-for-15 against Derek Lowe and Todd Helton has raked against him at .319 in 47 at-bats. Jason Giambi is no slouch at .281 and adds three home runs in 32 at-bats against Lowe.
Chris Volstad has a 5.24 ERA in his last 11 starts against the Phillies and he was hammered his last time out against them. Raul Ibanez, Jimmy Rollins, and Carlos Ruiz all have at least 20 at-bats and hit better than .400 against him. Ryan Howard is the big winner, posting a .500 average and seven home runs in 24 at-bats against the Florida starter. In other words, start your Phillies.
Not the prettiest of numbers for the Diamondbacks against Randy Wolf. Only Chris Young at .286 and Henry Blanco (??) at .364 have at least 10 at-bats and an average above .214 against the Milwaukee starter. Look for other options where you have them available for this one.
David DeJesus has the best numbers against Felix Hernandez available for Oakland. The outfielder is a .345 hitter with one home run in 29 at-bats. Both Kurt Suzuki and Cliff Pennington are 6-for-21. Coco Crisp is only 5-for-25 while Hideki Matsui is a .207 hitter against the Seattle starter. Obviously, no way you bench Hernandez.
Spot Starts: Karstens, Stauffer, Wolf
The Blue Jays have had little to no luck against Tim Wakefield. Aaron Hill would remain the only possible start for this one. Hill is hitting .286 in 35 at-bats against the Boston starter. Otherwise, look to avoid Toronto players where you can. Adam Lind is 2-for-13 while Jose Bautista checks in hitless in nine at-bats.
The Red Sox have LIT UP Ricky Romero. David Ortiz is 10-for-23 while J.D. Drew is even 11-for-22. Scutaro, Youkilis, and Jacoby Ellsbury all check in better than .300 against the lefty in at least 10 at-bats. Dustin Pedroia at .538 in 13 at-bats is the big winner for Boston. Basically, get your Red Sox in the lineup for this one.
Lance Berkman is a .280 hitter with five home runs in 50 at-bats against Bronson Arroyo. Matt Holliday and Skip Schumaker are both better than .300 against the Cincinnati starter while Jon Jay is 4-for-10. Colby Rasmus has two home runs and a .292 average in 24 at-bats. Arroyo may be 4-1 on the road, but he has a 5.72 ERA and .333 BAA in those outings.
Some good numbers from the usual suspects in Philadelphia against Anibal Sanchez. Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard are must starts and Chase Utley is a .464 hitter against him. Placido Polanco is 7-for-15 with two home runs. All good numbers here. Sanchez has struck out 14 Phillies in 13 innings against them this season to go with a 2.77 ERA in that stretch.
Jason Vargas already has four nine-inning, no runs allowed performances this season, all of which have come in his last ten starts and two of them in his last three. The A's have very limited numbers against the Seattle starter, and that should be even more reason to get him on the mound in this one. He is still under 24 percent owned and that means there is value to be had. Spot start of the day here.
Bud Norris has still struck out 110 batters in his 105 innings this season, giving him value in that category every time he steps on the mound. Still, rough numbers on the road, making him a tough start here. Norris has an ERA at 5.29 away from home (nearly three runs worse than at home) and a 1-3 record. McCutchen, Jones, and Neil Walker all hit better than .310 against Norris.
Odd to note that Charlie Morton has had the opposite problem as Norris. He cannot get anyone out at home. Morton is 2-3 at home with a 4.43 ERA (5-1, 3.00 on the road). While Hunter Pence is just 3-for-15, Michael Bourn is at .412 in 17 at-bats and Carlos Lee is 6-for-18.
Jake Westbrook finally put up good numbers in his last outing against Tampa. He had allowed 12 earned runs in his prior 16.1 innings pitched. Westbrook has been torched at home, posting an ERA over 6.00 in eight starts there this season. No major numbers to report in this one that could be of help, but Brandon Phillips is 4-for-9.
Geovany Soto is 7-for-11 with a home run and five RBI against Washington starter and former teammate Tom Gorzelanny. Aramis Ramirez is 2-for-17 while Alfonso Soriano has struggled to a .222 mark in 18 at-bats against him as well.
Spot Starts: Wakefield, Vargas, Hughes (first start off the DL, widely available)