Fantasy Baseball: Thursday News and Notes

Collin HagerSenior Writer IMay 14, 2009

NEW YORK - APRIL 16:  Cliff Lee #31 of the Cleveland Indians pitches against the New York Yankees during opening day at the new Yankee Stadium on April 16, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City. This is the first regular season MLB game being played at the new venue which replaced the old Yankee Stadium as the Yankees home field.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Curious what my news is? It's posted on the blog. Check it out here.
It's too bad the NHL made the decision to go with a network only seen in about ten percent of households nationwide.
Slight exaggeration, but I'm curious how many people weren't able to see Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin go at it. Game seven was awful, but the series has been impressive. 
But, if a game is played and no one is watching, does it matter? 
On a personal note, I'm ashamed of my selections last night when it comes to pitching. I don't think it could have possibly gone worse. Perfect storm, really. It's all right, let's rally back today. Always nice to have a low bar set. 
Wednesday Rewind
  • Good news on Chris Carpenter. The Cardinals starter threw a bullpen session the other day that went well and is slated for a side session on Friday. Carpenter is hoping that if all goes well he will return to the rotation on May 23. Owners that have been patient should be rewarded in this one.
  • Looks like Carlos Delgado could hit the DL on Friday. The Mets are slated to make a decision at that point, but signs point to him being shelved. Check out yesterday's post for possible replacement options for Delgado owners.
  • Hideki Matsui was held out of last night's game with a tight hamstring, and Derek Jeter continued to sit as well. From various reports, it doesn't look like Jeter will be ready to go on Thursday, so adjust lineups accordingly. Matsui thinks he could, but I wouldn't count on him in the lineup either.
  • The bloom is officially off the rose on Scott Richmond. The Blue Jays starter was roughed up by the Yankees, and has had two consecutive bad outings. Richmond is a journeyman pitcher, and the fall back to earth shouldn't necessarily surprise anyone. Use him against weaker lineups, but not against the big boys yet.
  • Ricky Nolasco (shaking head). He's given up at least three runs in all but one start, and in that one start he only went four innings. The season so far has been a disaster. You can't necessarily out and out cut the guy, but if you got the right trade, I wouldn't be opposed to making it. He still has value and upside, and will be picked up if you cut him.
  • Starting to see a few Cubs on the waivers repeatedly. Geovany Soto and Derrek Lee are coming up in a few leagues. With the depth at first base, Lee I understand. Quite simply, you can find better on the waivers and he hasn't shown signs of life in weeks. Soto, though, still plays a shallow position. Yes, guys like Jeff Baker and Chris Ianetta are swinging hot bats, but I'm not quite ready to put the toe tag on Soto yet.
  • So, it might be time to start buying Barry Zito, even moderately. Zito pitched a solid game yesterday that isn't going to show in the stat line. According to a few people I talked to that saw the game, the final two runs shouldn't be on his record. They are, so that skews the stats. Zito has pitched remarkably well early on. Deep league owners that need pitching could do worse than looking here.
  • Carlos Zambrano remains on track to start for the Cubs next week against San Diego. Zambrano threw a bullpen session that went well and will go to Florida for a rehab start prior to making his appearance next Friday. Weekly owners should activate him for next week.
  • Cliff Lee finally got a little run support at home that sent him to a win against the White Sox. No doubt it was a duel between he and Mark Buehrle, but Lee finally was able to pull out a win. He scattered six hits and a walk over seven innings of work to go with nine strikeous. Remember how we all wanted to jump ship earlier this season?
  • Yesterday's Results: Lots of Losses (Season: 88-66-3)

Thursday Notes

  • Rod Barajas and Marco Scutaro have had the most success against C.C. Sabathia. Both are above .400 in 17 and 14 at-bats, respectively. Keep them active in this one against the Yankees starter, especially where Barajas has three home runs in his seven hits. Vernon Wells and Aaron Hill both have had problems making contact.
  • At some point, Magglio Ordonez is going to start hitting, and maybe that comes today. Ordonez is 12-for-28 against Scott Baker. I'm not concerned with keeping Baker active in this one, as Ordonez has posted the best numbers against him. In fact, if you have another option for Brandon Inge (.200), then you might want to use it.
  • Justin Verlander has been on a solid three outing streak. He's allowed just one earned run in his last 23 innings of work. He's also struck out 31 hitters in that time. While your normal Twins should be in the lineup against him, I wouldn't reach much. Joe Crede is 8-for-24, but that's as deep as you should look with how hot Verlander is right now.
  • Jhonny Peralta should be able to continue his hot hitting against James Shields today. Peralta is 5-for-11 in his limited time against the Rays starter. Grady Sizemore has struggled, so simply don't expect much. He's 1-for-12 against Shields. Sizemore does have a hit in five straight, but is just five for his last 21 and hitting only .228 this season. Might not be a bad time to reserve him.
  • Jason Bartlett may grab a seat on your bench today. Bartlett is the only player with major experience against Fausto Carmona, and he's 0-for-13 in those at-bats. Sure, he could change that today, but this is a pretty major trend. I wouldn't look at more than 1-for-4.
  • Ervin Santana is getting the ball for the Angels, and I'm holding him out for a start to be certain. Julio Lugo and David Ortiz both have decent numbers against Santana. I'm inclined to get them in the lineup, even with the way Ortiz is struggling. He has to break out at some point, right?
  • There's reason to be concerned over Felix Hernandez more than just the early season ERA. Hernandez is 2-4 in his last seven starts on the road against the Rangers. In those trips to Arlington, his WHIP is nearly 1.50, and he's given up 42 hits in 42 innings. There could be a David Murphy sighting in this one. He's 7-for-19 against Hernandez.
  • Jeremy Guthrie is a decent start if you can grab him. He's not as widely available as you might think based on his start, but he still provides value. Guthrie has looked better in his last two outings and his velocity has climbed a couple notches. The Royals are swinging well, and are playing even better at home. Still, a six inning, three run outing with seven strikeouts wouldn't surprise me. His BABIP is over .300, that has to come down.
  • John Maine's last three starts have been impressive. In the past 18 innings, Maine has allowed just five hits. His command hasn't been great, as demonstrated by nine walks, but batters are hitting just .195 against him on the season. At 42 percent owned, I like him as an option today. His BABIP is right at .222, which puts him with the tops of the league. Likely not going to stay there, but still a decent matchup this time out. Just don't get too excited, regression to the mean is rough.
  • Spot Starts: Maine, Wandy Rodriguez, Dave Bush
  • Keep on the Bench: Felix Hernandez

Notes for Friday

  • I'd get all my Phillies into the lineup against John Lannan. There isn't one regular that doesn't have decent numbers against the Nationals starter. Lannan is 0-4 in his last five starts against the Phillies, with an ERA well over 6.00. Enjoy this one as a Phillies owner.
  • Kyle Lohse is slated for the start tomorrow against the Brewers, but is coming up with another injury. Last time out, there was concern over his elbow, and after his appearance on Saturday there were issues with his back. I'd keep him down in this one. Still, hold out Bill Hall, as he is only 1-for-15 against Lohse.
  • Texas is the one team that Joe Saunders has had trouble with. Saunders is 0-3 with an ERA over 9.00 in his last three starts in Arlington. While he's owned Seattle and Oakland, Texas has been a problem, at least on the road. I'm banging the drum for this guy hard, but I'd keep him reserved here.
  • Brian Moehler has 11 strikeouts, three walks and three earned runs in his two starts since returning from the DL, but does not own a win to show for it. He's actually pitching pretty well in that regard. Your normal Cubs are going to remain decent plays in this one, but don't sleep on Moehler.
  • Spot Starts: Paul Maholm, Doug Davis, Edwin Jackson

Collin Hager writes The Elmhurst Pub fantasy blog. You can get your questions answered by sending an email to He's also on Twitter @TheRoundtable