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Joaquin Benoit ((USATSI))
Which relievers are one trade away from assuming the closer's role for their teams? Michael Hurcomb speaks to that and helps prioritize your waiver claims. Full story
Related Links:
• Scott White chat transcript (7/21)
• Today's Probables | Two-start SPs
• Player Rankings | Roster Trends
• Hurcomb: Vogt, Gillaspie good adds?
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Most Added Players
Player% ±
1Jacob deGrom, NYM, SP22
2Danny Salazar, CLE, SP20
3Joaquin Benoit, SD, RP20
4Odrisamer Despaigne, SD, SP15
5Shane Greene, NYY, RP13
6Brandon McCarthy, NYY, SP13
7Jake Odorizzi, TB, SP12
8Wade Miley, ARI, SP12
9Chris Johnson, ATL, 3B12
10Edinson Volquez, PIT, SP11
Most Dropped Players
Player% ±
1C.J. Cron, LAA, DH-19
2Joe Smith, LAA, RP-15
3Mookie Betts, BOS, CF-15
4Shelby Miller, STL, SP-10
5Marco Estrada, MIL, SP-10
6CC Sabathia, NYY, SP-9
7Drew Pomeranz, OAK, SP-9
8Mike Zunino, SEA, C-7
9Carlos Martinez, STL, RP-7
10Jason Grilli, LAA, RP-7
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Player News
Manny Machado out Tuesday with lower back tightness
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10:14 pm ET) Orioles third baseman Manny Machado is out of the lineup Tuesday with tightness in his lower back, the Baltimore Sun reports.

Machado is just 1 for 10 over his last three games but is still hitting .267/.317/.422 with 10 home runs and 23 RBI in 258 at-bats. He's day-to-day with the back issue.


Michael Saunders not expected back before mid-August
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10:06 pm ET) Mariners outfielder Michael Saunders could be slightly ahead of schedule in his recovery from an oblique strain, MLB.com reports.

Even though Saunders is recovering well, he isn't expected to return until mid-August at the earliest. "He's feeling better," manager Lloyd McClendon said. "He's getting better. He may be a little ahead of schedule, but that's going to be a while."


Roenis Elias good to go after forearm cramp Monday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10:02 pm ET) Mariners pitcher Roenis Elias "checked out fine" when trainers looked at his forearm Tuesday, MLB.com reports.

Elias was removed from Monday's start with cramping in his forearm, but he should be good to go for his start this weekend. He owns a 4.41 ERA and 104:42 K:BB ratio in 118 1/3 innings.


Collin McHugh tosses five innings in rehab outing Tuesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:51 pm ET) Astros pitcher Collin McHugh began a rehab assignment with Triple-A Oklahoma City Tuesday, giving up one earned run on three hits and one walk in five innings and recording five strikeouts.

McHugh threw 80 pitches in the rehab start, and if he had no problems with his injured finger, his next start could come with the Astros Sunday. He owns a 3.28 ERA and 93:33 K:BB ratio in 82 1/3 innings.


Start a good sign for Emilio Bonifacio
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9:42 pm ET) After missing more than a month with a strained oblique, Cubs utility player Emilio Bonifacio came off the DL Tuesday. But the bigger news for Fantasy owners is that he started his first game back. With Arismendy Alcantara now up in the big leagues and Chris Coghlan and Justin Ruggiano crushing it in recent weeks, his starting role was less than assured.

And frankly, it still is. Bonifacio's start Tuesday was against a left-hander, Eric Stults, and the switch-hitter entered the day batting .362 against lefties compared to just .230 against righties. Given that Chris Coghlan, who bats left-handed, was out of the lineup Tuesday, this could have the makings of a platoon.

As an everyday player, Bonifacio's steals potential and versatility would make him a nice find in Rotisserie leagues. As a part-timer, he's nothing more than waiver fodder.

If you need steals, you certainly have nothing to lose by making a move for him now, but understand he's hardly an open-and-shut case.


Scooter Gennett exits game with quad tightness
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:29 pm ET) Brewers second baseman Scooter Gennett was removed from Tuesday's game after experiencing tightness in his right quad, the team announced.

Gennett went 0 for 2 at the plate before being removed. He also dealt with quad tightness over the weekend. Gennett has hit .305/.343/.481 with eight home runs, 34 RBI and six stolen bases in 295 at-bats.


Pedro Alvarez removed with knee discomfort Tuesday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(9:11 pm ET) Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez was removed from Tuesday's game with a knee issue.

Alvarez left the game with left knee discomfort. He was 1 for 2, with a double, before being removed from the game. 


Your daily White Sox closer assessment
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9:05 pm ET) You may recall White Sox manager Robin Ventura had this to say after Zach Putnam bailed out Jake Petricka with two outs in the ninth inning Saturday for his second save in as many days:

"Unfortunately, I don't have a guy that you're just going to leave out there, saying that's your closer," Ventura said.

But the second half of that quote may actually say more:

"I like Put's swing-and-miss ability with some lefties, and that's the reason."

"Put," of course, is Putnam, who struck out left-handed hitter Jason Castro with two runners on to secure the save Saturday. But looking back on it, the most interesting part of Putnam bailing out Petricka is that it happened immediately after the second out, not after the second runner reached base. If a right-handed hitter was due up instead of Castro, Ventura may have just let Petricka finish out the inning.

Which explains why Ventura went back to Petricka in the ninth inning Monday. Two right-handed hitters were due up.

After weeks of trying to discern what's happening at the back end of the White Sox bullpen, we may finally have an answer: It's a lefty-righty platoon. Considering they're not so great individually anyway, perhaps you should leave both Putnam and Petricka for the deepest of Rotisserie leagues.


Kelly Johnson to see time in right field
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:04 pm ET) Yankees infielder Kelly Johnson is starting in right field for the first time in his career Tuesday, and manager Joe Girardi indicated that Johnson could play more often in right field moving forward, MLB.com reports.

"He's played mostly left field, but I think he's athletic enough that it shouldn't be a problem," Girardi said. "I might have to do it if we can't get Carlos [Beltran] out there, because I can't run these guys out there every day."

The Yankees acquired Chase Headley Tuesday and will start him regularly at third base, where Johnson has made a majority of his appearances this season.


Could trade resuscitate Yangervis Solarte's value?
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(8:50 pm ET) The trade that brought Yangervis Solarte from the Yankees to the Padres Tuesday assures at least one thing: The 27-year-old utility player play every day again. Between Jedd Gyorko's plantar fasciitis, Everth Cabrera's strained hamstring and, of course, Chase Headley's sudden departure, the Padres have openings all across their infield.

Though Solarte hadn't completely disappeared from the lineup in his final weeks with the Yankees, he sat too often to have any chance of overcoming his midsummer slump -- which, by the way, has lasted only 18 games. Granted, he's gone 4 for 51 (.078) during those 18 games, but the lack of repetition certainly hasn't helped. When inexperienced players see fewer pitches, they tend to get worse rather than better. Solarte hasn't had a chance to work through this slump. The Yankees pulled the plug on him too quickly.

He'll get that chance with the Padres, and because of that, I wouldn't rule out him making an impact in the second half. Throughout his slump, he has continued to make contact at a high rate, striking out just nine times in those 18 games, and players who do that typically hit for a high batting average. When the Yankees sent Solarte down for five games in the middle of the slump (giving him those consistent at-bats he lacked in the majors), he went 12 for 20 (.600). The ability is still there.

That's not to say I'm rushing to pick Solarte back up. It's probably unnecessary outside the deepest of leagues. But if he shows signs of life, I'll be ready.


 
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