I hope you all enjoyed what is one of my favorite weekends of the year (Baseball is in full-swing, NFL Draft, NBA playoffs starting, Round Two of the NHL playoffs) and are ready for Week 5 of the Fantasy Baseball Season.
Each and every day, I’ll be combing over box scores and scouring local beat writers’ reports to make sure you have all the information you need in order to make the right decisions for your fantasy baseball lineup. Make sure you check back at this very spot for Hot/Cold Streaks, Injury News, Closer Updates, Daily Stats, and more so that you can stay one step ahead of the rest of your league.
In case you’ve been hiding under a rock all weekend, the two best prospects in all of baseball were called-up over the weekend, so I’ve added a special section at the bottom of the “Daily Grab Bag” for all of you that are infatuated with prospects (who isn’t, really?).
And of course, make sure you’re playing Daily Fantasy Sports at FP911Challenge.com.
Before we get to today’s games, let’s take a spin through last night’s box scores to identify the Studs and Duds from Sunday, April 29th.
5 Good Nights
- Carlos Gonzalez: 2-3, 2 R, HR, RBI, 2 steals
- Matt Garza: 7.0 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 10 K’s, W
- Joey Votto: 2-3, R, HR, 4 RBI
- Derek Lowe: 7.2 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 K’s, W
- Dan Haren: 7.2 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 6 K’s, W
Honorable Mention: Todd Helton, Edwin Encarnacion, Jay Bruce, David Wright, Joe Mather, Miguel Olivo, Andruw Jones, Wilson Betemit, Giancarlo Stanton, Jed Lowrie, Jason Kubel, C.C. Sabathia, Ervin Santana, Bartolo Colon, Chris Capuano, Wade Miley, Johan Santana, Zack Greinke, Tommy Hunter, Gavin Floyd, David Price, Henderson Alvarez, Gio Gonzalez, Jason Vargas, Kyle Kendrick
5 Bad Nights
- Grant Balfour: 0.0 IP, 2 H, 3 ER, 0 K’s
- Bruce Chen: 2.2 IP, 6 H, 6 ER, 1 K
- Josh Johnson: 5.1 IP, 10 H, 5 ER, 8 K’s
- Marco Scutaro: 0-6
- Mark Teixeira: 0-5
Dishonorable Mention: Ian Kinsler, Ramon Hernandez, Drew Stubbs, Adrian Gonzalez, Frank Francisco, Jon Rauch, Francisco Cordero, Matt Capps, Carlos Marmol, Craig Kimbrel, Jamie Moyer, Mat Latos, Derek Holland, Max Scherzer
Daily Grab Bag
Check back here for daily updates on injuries, closer battles, player news, and anything else that might affect your fantasy baseball team.
- As I mentioned yesterday, it looks like a changing of the guard is afoot in Los Angeles. A day after Javy Guerra allowed a run for a third straight game, Kenley Jansen picked up the save for the Dodgers. Don Mattingly had said before the game that Guerra is still the closer, but I think this is a case of actions speaking louder than words.
- Cliff Lee (oblique) played long-toss Saturday and could be activated as soon as Friday.
- Johnny Damon will be added to the Cleveland Indians’ roster on Tuesday and should get at-bats immediately. It’s looking like Damon will most likely cut into Shelley Duncan’s at-bats, since Shin-Soo Choo (hamstring) is also targeting a Tuesday return to the lineup.
- Matt Thornton picked up a four-out save against the Red Sox yesterday, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s displaced Hector Santiago as the White Sox’ closer, according to Robin Ventura. The White Sox’ manager indicated that he used Thornton due to previous success against certain Red Sox hitters, but this is definitely a situation to keep an eye on if you’re chasing saves.
- Even though Josh Hamilton left Sunday’s game with a back injury, the Rangers’ slugger is expecting to play today. Back injuries are a tricky deal, however, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see Hamilton take a day off.
- Nick Swisher left Sunday’s game due to a hamstring injury and will miss “more than a few games” according to Yankee’s manager, Joe Girardi. Swisher is not expected to require a DL-trip, but reinforcements are on the way to the Bronx as Brett Gardner (elbow) is expected to be activated on Thursday.
- Trout/Harper Watch: With two of baseball’s best prospects being called-up on the same day, I’m going to dedicate this space to keeping tabs on the youngsters for the near future. Here’s to hoping that you were able to grab one (or both)!
Mike Trout: 0-4 on Sunday. (0-8 on the season)
Bryce Harper: 1-3 on Sunday. (2-6, RBI on the season)
A quick look at some of today’s pitchers to start (3 Up), pitchers to sit (3 Down), pitchers to take a flier on if you need a spot-start (Throwing Darts), and batters with advantageous or disadvantageous matchups (Today’s Swings and Misses).
C.J. Wilson vs. Minnesota Twins
Wilson has started the season strong (2.42 ERA/1.08 WHIP) and held the Twins to three hits in seven innings on his way to a 5-1 victory just three weeks ago.
Felix Hernandez at Tampa Bay
King Felix has faced current Rays batters 135 times in his career and has only allowed 22 hits (.163 average).
Jeremy Hellickson vs. Seattle Mariners
Hellickson pitched 22.1 innings over three starts against the Mariners last season and walked away no worse for the wear with a 3-0 record and 0.81 ERA.
Clay Buchholz vs. Oakland Athletics
I’m still not convinced that Buchholz is fully healthy (Evidence A: his 8.87 ERA and 1.93 WHIP) and he also gave up seven runs in ten innings against the A’s last season.
Aaron Harang at Los Angeles Dodgers
In four starts at Coors Field over the past three seasons, Harang has allowed 19 earned runs in 19.1 innings (8.84 ERA).
Kyle Drabek vs. Texas Rangers
Drabek has had a great start to the 2012 season (2-1, 2.25 ERA), but he’s facing a Rangers team that leads the Majors in runs scored. The young right-hander might catch a break if Josh Hamilton sits out today, but there’s still plenty of pop in Texas’ lineup to worry about here.
Vance Worley vs. Chicago Cubs
Worley has started strong this season (2-1, 2.16 ERA) and is facing a Cubs team that he only allowed one earned run against in eight innings last season.
R.A. Dickey at Houston Astros
You really never know what you’re going to get from a knuckleballer, but with limited spot-start options available today, I’ll take a chance with Dickey against the 8-14 Astros.
James McDonald at Atlanta Braves
McDonald hasn’t allowed more than three runs in any of his four starts this year, and even took a no-hitter into the sixth inning his last time out. (It’s a small sample-size, but 5.1 scoreless innings at Turner Field in 2011 isn’t too shabby either.)
Today’s Swings and Misses
- Carlos Gonzalez is 4-for-8 (.500) with three extra-base hits in his career against today’s starter, Aaron Harang.
- Evan Longoria is 5-for-14 (.357) in his career against today’s starter, Felix Hernandez.
- Carlos Lee is 8-for-21 (.381) in his career against today’s starter, R.A. Dickey.
- Joe Mauer is 2-for-2 (.091) in his career against today’s starter, C.J. Wilson.
- B.J. Upton is 2-for-25 (.080) in his career against today’s starter, Felix Hernandez.
- Chase Headley is 2-for-14 (.143) in his career against today’s starter, Randy Wolf.
Don’t forget to check out some of the other great content on FantasyPros911, starting with some of today’s recent updates:
- Patrick DiCaprio previews today’s starting pitchers in the latest edition of “Pitch or Ditch”.
- Greg Marta takes a look at Pitching Matchups to Watch for this week.
- Markus Potter dusts off his calculator for the Week 4 FAAB Wire.
- Chuck Anderson examines this week’s Added and Dropped for all you premium subscribers. You haven’t subscribed yet? What are you waiting for?!?
- Lenny Melnick and his award-winning podcast cover Jose Baustista, Wade Miley, and a whole lot more fantasy goodness.
See you tomorrow!