Surprisingly good numbers, overall, for John Lackey against the Mariners. He has held Ichiro to a .298 mark in 98 career at-bats. Jack Cust and Chone Figgins are both good to go. Cust has three home runs to go with a .323 average in 31 at-bats against Lackey while Figgins is 5-for-11. Olivo, Gutierrez, and Kennedy should be kept on the bench for this one.
Carlos Lee rakes against Carlos Zambrano, posting five home runs and a .369 average in 65 at-bats against him. Hunter Pence has had more problems than not, hitting only .219 in 32 at-bats against the Chicago starter. Michael Bourn is likely the only other Astros starter on your radar, and he has hit .273 when Zambrano is on the mound.
Bud Norris on the road is a bad idea. His 4.83 ERA and 1.37 WHIP in 41 road innings. His strikeout numbers are almost as good, with 40 in those 41 innings pitched. Norris has a 4.82 ERA this month and 1.50 WHIP in three starts.
Matt Holliday, Yadier Molina, and Lance Berkman have all had their issues when facing Paul Maholm. Holliday and Berkman are both below .200, though Holliday has two home runs in his three hits against Maholm for his career. Molina not much better, as he hits just .208. Albert Pujols might be in good shape. A .576 average in 33 at-bats would do that for a guy.
Gavin Floyd has been much better on the road than he has at home of late. Floyd has a 1.17 WHIP and 3.36 ERA away from home, giving up three or fewer earned runs in four of his last six starts. Travis Hafner is just 1-for-11 against Floyd but his are the only major numbers to avoid here. Floyd is 5-2 in his last eight starts against the Indians.
David Wright is expected back in the lineup tonight against the Marlins and he is 4-for-11 against Chris Volstad. The Florida starter has pitched relatively well against the Mets in his last five starts. He has a 3.18 ERA in those 28.1 innings to go with 19 strikeouts.
Possible that we see Luke Scott back tonight for the Orioles. Should Baltimore activate him, he is 6-for-15 against Ervin Santana, some of the best numbers that the Orioles have against the Angels starter. Nick Markakis and Adam Jones are good to go. Markakis is hitting .370 with three home runs in 27 at-bats while Jones is 4-for-11.
Avoid Boston catchers tonight against Felix Hernandez. Varitek and Saltalamachhia have combined to go just 5-for-31. Jacoby Ellsbury is red hot, but note that he is just 2-for-14 when facing Hernandez. Adrian Gonzalez and J.D. Drew are the only regulars above .300 and Carl Crawford is hitting .296. Start your other Red Sox as your normally would for this one.
Only Michael Cuddyer and Denard Span have 10 or more at-bats against Max Scherzer. Cuddyer has hit .300 while Span is at .231 in 13 at-bats. Jim Thome is 4-for-8 while Delmon Young is 3-for-8. Scherzer has been lights out in three of his last four and has allowed just three earned runs in his last two starts, which covers 14.2 innings of work.
Spot Starts: Volstad, Luebke, Duensing