Hopping on a plane to Indy, so only time for the Monday games this morning...
Tim Wakefield has not seen many of the Orioles that will be in the lineup tonight because of the injuries currently plaguing Baltimore. Nick Markakis has had a lot of problems against the knuckleball, posting just five hits in 27 at-bats. That is only good for a .185 average, but of those five hits, two are home runs. Adam Jones is the only other player with enough at-bats to note, and he is just 3-for-13.
More numbers than you might think for the Red Sox against Brad Bergesen. Biggest one to note is the fact J.D. Drew is 7-for-21 with two home runs. Both Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia are hitting better than .350 against him. Look to avoid Kevin Youkilis if possible given his 2-for-15 mark and note that David Ortiz is just a .227 hitter in 22 at-bats against Bergesen.
While you should start Evan Longoria and his .342 against A.J. Burnett, there is little else to like about the Rays in this one. Johnny Damon is hitting just .179 in 28 at-bats while B.J. Upton is hitting only .220 in 41. Ben Zobrist is just a .231 hitter and Reid Brignac is 2-for-12.
Nate Schierholtz has been red hot of late and is 6-for-16 against Chad Billingsley. Miguel Tejada, Aaron Rowand, and even Mike Fontenot are all hitting better than .345 and all have 17 or more at-bats against him. Both Aubrey Huff and Pablo Sandoval are hitting below .200 and have 24 and 33 at-bats against the Dodgers starter respectively.
The Diamondbacks saw plenty of Randy Wolf when he was with the Dodgers and it was to mixed results. Chris Young and Stephen Drew had their struggles. Young has a .250 average in 24 at-bats while Drew is 2-for-12. Roberts, Upton, Blum, and Blanco all have good marks and should be used as needed in this matchup.
Josh Collmenter threw six innings of shutout ball against the Brewers his last time out. The smell is off the rose a bit for Collmenter, but he has pitched well at home all season. In 32.1 innings at home, he has a WHIP under 1.00 to go with a 2.23 ERA and 21 strikeouts. Good spot start for today given some of the numbers available.
Todd Helton has a .306 average in 49 at-bats against Derek Lowe while Ryan Spilborghs is 5-for-15. These are your only Rockies hitting better than .300 against the Atlanta starter. Lowe has been hit pretty hard in his last six starts so do not let many of the numbers deter you. Start your Rockies as you normally would because of that fact.
Still only 32 percent owned in ESPN leagues, Mark Buehrle deserves more credit than he is being given. Since reaching a high of 4.07 on May 15th, Buehrle has lowered his ERA to 3.42 in his last nine starts and has not allowed more than three earned runs in any of those outings. Melky Cabrera needs to be started given his .600 mark in 20 at-bats and Brayan Pena is 5-for-10. Billy Butler and Mitch Maier should be good here as well.
Spot Starts: Buehrle, Collmenter, Swarzak