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Week 7 Fantasy Pitching Planner

Eric Mack
Senior Fantasy Writer

We go around baseball's rotations every Sunday of the season in our weekly Pitching Planner. We highlight every matchup, recommended two-start options, sleepers and busts and much more. The means we consider them a recommended start. The means we suggest you consider a replacement option. The teams have if we deem their week's matchups favorable and if their week's matchups are deemed unfavorable.

Arizona Diamondbacks

  1. Dan Haren vs TOR Morrow
  2. Edwin Jackson at FLA Volstad, vs TOR Eveland
  3. Ian Kennedy vs SF Wellemeyer
  4. Rodrigo Lopez vs SF Lincecum
  5. Billy Buckner at FLA Johnson, vs TOR Marcum

Two-starter(s): Jackson and Buckner. They are high-risk options even in the deepest of NL-only leagues at this point. Many more might take a shot on the erratic Jackson, but they probably shouldn't.
Who is getting skipped: Cesar Valdez. He is headed to the bullpen for the recall of Buckner.
One-week sleeper: Kennedy. He is listed as the team's sleeper every week. Eventually Fantasy will catch up and consider him a must-start. He has had just one bad start in eight this season.
One-week bust: Jackson. He made some progress but took another significant step back the last time out -- too difficult to trust.

Atlanta Braves

  1. Tommy Hanson vs CIN Leake
  2. Tim Hudson at PIT Ohlendorf
  3. Derek Lowe vs NYM Pelfrey, at PIT Morton
  4. Kris Medlen vs NYM Santana, at PIT Duke
  5. Kenshin Kawakami vs CIN Harang
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Two-starter(s): Lowe and Medlen. They are questionable options that might qualify as sleepers in deeper leagues.
Who is getting skipped: Jair Jurrjens (hamstring). He had another setback and could be out for a while now.
One-week sleeper: Lowe. He has had a bad start to the season, but the Mets are struggling, the Pirates are awful and Lowe was better last time out.
One-week bust: Medlen. He remains in the rotation and can stretch out, but we cannot be sure he will go long enough to qualify for a victory in either start.

Baltimore Orioles

  1. Kevin Millwood vs KC Greinke, at WAS Lannan
  2. Jeremy Guthrie at TEX Harden
  3. Brian Matusz at TEX Feldman
  4. David Hernandez at WAS Olsen
  5. Brad Bergesen vs KC Davies, at WAS Stammen

Two-starter(s): Bergesen and Millwood. They are questionable options that should be left for deeper leagues only at this point.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Bergesen. He has won three consecutive starts and doesn't face matchups all that daunting. He might even be worth a look in mixed leagues.
One-week bust: Matusz. He snapped out of his funk, but we don't advise you using him in mixed leagues at Texas.

Boston Red Sox

  1. Josh Beckett at NYY Sabathia, at PHI Halladay
  2. John Lackey at PHI Hamels
  3. Jon Lester vs MIN Liriano
  4. Clay Buchholz vs MIN Baker
  5. Daisuke Matsuzaka at NYY Hughes, at PHI Kendrick

Two-starter(s): Dice-K and perhaps Beckett. They are questionable options in those matchups. Beckett is trying to come back from injury, while Dice-K has had just one good start and isn't entirely trustworthy yet.
Who is getting skipped: Tim Wakefield. He is insurance in case Beckett's back doesn't loosen up.
One-week sleeper: Buchholz. He was better his last time out and draws perhaps the only favorable matchup of the week for the Red Sox.
One-week bust: Dice-K and Beckett. We hate their matchups, but they haven't been consistent enough to trust anyway.

Top 10 Pitchers Added
Player % Change
1. Derek Holland, SP, Rangers 38
2. Mat Latos, SP, Padres 32
3. Jose A. Contreras, SP, Phillies 26
4. John Ely, SP, Dodgers 22
5. Johnny Cueto, SP, Reds 13
6. Jon Garland, SP, Padres 13
7. Jason M. Vargas, SP, Mariners 12
8. Ben Sheets, SP, Athletics 8
9. Clayton Richard, SP, Padres 8
10. Alfredo Simon, SP, Orioles 8

Chicago Cubs

  1. Ryan Dempster at PHI Blanton
  2. Ted Lilly at TEX Lewis
  3. Randy Wells vs COL Cook, at TEX Holland
  4. Carlos Silva vs COL Chacin, at TEX Wilson
  5. Tom Gorzelanny at PHI Moyer

Two-starter(s): Wells and Silva. They are questionable options because of their matchups and better left for NL-only leagues.
Who is getting skipped: Carlos Zambrano. He remains wasted and worthless.
One-week sleeper: Lilly. He has improving and is still a risk worth taking at Texas.
One-week bust: Wells and Silva. They are coming off good outings but those matchups make them less intriguing in mixed leagues, especially with so many two-start pitcher options this week.

Chicago White Sox

  1. Mark Buehrle vs LAA Saunders
  2. Jake Peavy vs LAA Santana
  3. Gavin Floyd vs FLA Nolasco
  4. Freddy An. Garcia at DET Porcello, vs FLA Volstad
  5. John Danks at DET Verlander, vs FLA Johnson

Two-starter(s): Danks and Garcia. Danks is a must-start, while Garcia remains a questionable option, despite his recent resurgence.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Garcia. He has been good enough of late to consider using him in deeper leagues if you want to take a chance on a two-start pitcher.
One-week bust: Buehrle and Floyd. They aren't pitching well enough to trust in this one-start week.

Cincinnati Reds

  1. Aaron Harang at ATL Kawakami
  2. Bronson Arroyo at CLE Westbrook
  3. Johnny Cueto vs MIL Bush, at CLE Carmona
  4. Homer Bailey vs MIL Gallardo, at CLE Huff
  5. Mike Leake at ATL Hanson

Two-starter(s): Cueto and Bailey. Cueto is a must-start, while Bailey remains a questionable option, depite a good last start.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Arroyo. He has been much better of late and draws a favorable matchup.
One-week bust: Bailey. Many picked him back up after his impressive last start, but we need to see him string some together before we can trust him in mixed leagues.

Cleveland Indians

  1. Fausto Carmona at TB Niemann, vs CIN Cueto
  2. David Huff at TB Price, vs CIN Bailey
  3. Justin Masterson vs KC Meche
  4. Mitch Talbot vs KC Hochevar
  5. Jake Westbrook vs CIN Arroyo

Two-starter(s): Carmona and Huff. Carmona is advisable, while Huff has to be considered high-risk.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Talbot. He is rolling and not getting his due in most mixed Fantasy leagues. That's a good matchup, obviously.
One-week bust: Westbrook. He is coming off an encouraging outing, but we don't think that's enough to consider him a real option for mixed leagues yet.

Colorado Rockies

  1. Ubaldo Jimenez at HOU Oswalt
  2. Jeff Francis at KC Davies
  3. Aaron Cook at CHC Wells, at KC Greinke
  4. Jhoulys Chacin at CHC Silva
  5. Jason Hammel at KC Bannister
  6. Greg Smith? at HOU Paulino

Two-starter(s): Cook. He is a questionable option because he is just so inconsistent from start-to-start this season.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Francis. He came off the DL nicely Sunday and draws a favorable matchup.
One-week bust: Chacin. After those first two great starts, that last one has to concern you.

Detroit Tigers

  1. Justin Verlander vs CHW Danks, at LAD Kuroda
  2. Rick Porcello vs CHW Garcia, at LAD Ely
  3. Jeremy Bonderman at OAK Braden
  4. Dontrelle Willis at OAK TBD
  5. Armando Galarraga at LAD Billingsley

Two-starter(s): Verlander and Porcello. Verlander is a must-start, while Porcello is a questionable option amid his poor start to his sophomore season.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Bonderman. He has strung some good starts together and that A's offense isn't that threatening.
One-week bust: Porcello. We cannot explain his struggles but we do know he is tough to trust in mixed leagues right now, even with the two starts.

Florida Marlins

  1. Josh Johnson vs ARI Buckner, at CHW Danks
  2. Ricky Nolasco vs CHW Floyd
  3. Anibal Sanchez at STL Garcia
  4. Nate Robertson at STL Wainwright
  5. Chris Volstad vs ARI Jackson, at CHW Garcia
This week's two-start pitchers
Must-starts TM Own% Start%
Roy Halladay PHI 98 90
Matt Cain SF 97 89
Josh Johnson FLA 97 88
Chris Carpenter STL 97 88
Felix Hernandez SEA 97 87
Zack Greinke KC 97 87
CC Sabathia NYY 98 86
Jered Weaver ANA 97 86
Yovani Gallardo MIL 97 86
Johan Santana NYM 97 86
Phil Hughes NYY 96 85
Justin Verlander DET 97 84
David Price TB 96 84
John Danks CHW 96 78
Jeff Niemann TB 89 75
Jonathan O. Sanchez SF 92 74
C.J. Wilson TEX 87 74
Hiroki Kuroda LA 90 70
Shaun Marcum TOR 86 63
Johnny Cueto CIN 78 57
Advisables TM Own% Start%
Kevin Slowey MIN 87 65
Carl Pavano MIN 77 57
Mat Latos SD 71 51
Ben Sheets OAK 76 48
Derek Holland TEX 51 36
Gio Gonzalez OAK 48 31
Clayton Richard SD 34 25
Chris Volstad FLA 34 23
John Ely LA 22 16
Questionables TM Own% Start%
Mike Pelfrey NYM 83 59
Josh Beckett BOS 97 58
Scott Kazmir ANA 88 54
Derek Lowe ATL 78 52
Fausto Carmona CLE 72 50
Wandy Rodriguez HOU 83 49
Randy Wells CHC 68 44
Daisuke Matsuzaka BOS 85 38
Rick Porcello DET 63 35
Carlos Silva CHC 46 27
Kevin Millwood BAL 42 23
Homer Bailey CIN 38 18
Aaron Cook COL 25 13
Kyle Lohse STL 16 9
Brad Bergesen BAL 12 8
Kyle Kendrick PHI 9 6
Bud Norris HOU 16 5
Kris Medlen ATL 8 5
Kyle Davies KC 8 4
Freddy An. Garcia CHW 6 4
High-risks TM Own% Start%
Edwin Jackson ARI 62 27
Dana Eveland TOR 16 8
Zach Duke PIT 20 7
Ryan Rowland-Smith SEA 8 3
John Lannan WAS 9 2
David Huff CLE 5 1
Charlie Morton PIT 2 1
Craig Stammen WAS 2 1
Manny Parra MIL 1 0
Billy Buckner ARI 0 0

Two-starter(s): Johnson and Volstad. Johnson is a must-start, while Volstad is an advisable option amid a quietly effective streak and some decent matchups.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Sanchez. He has been pitching well enough to trust in mixed leagues, even at the Cardinals.
One-week bust: Robertson. This is a Marlins back-end starter we wouldn't advise against the Cards.

Houston Astros

  1. Roy Oswalt vs COL Jimenez
  2. Brett Myers vs TB Garza
  3. Wandy Rodriguez at LAD Ely, vs TB Niemann
  4. Bud Norris at LAD Kuroda, vs TB Price
  5. Felipe Paulino vs COL Smith?

Two-starter(s): Rodriguez and Norris. They are questionable options that have shown flashes, but their lack of consistency make them more of NL-only options at this point.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Rodriguez. We can see you taking a chance on him due to the premium you paid to get him on Draft Day.
One-week bust: Myers. He has been pitching even better than we even thought, but this matchup this week makes him a candidate to sit.

Kansas City Royals

  1. Zack Greinke at BAL Millwood, vs COL Cook
  2. Gil Meche at CLE Masterson
  3. Luke Hochevar at CLE Talbot
  4. Brian Bannister vs COL Hammel
  5. Kyle Davies at BAL Bergesen, vs COL Francis

Two-starter(s): Greinke and Davies. Greinke remains a must-start, while Davies is a questionable option best left for the deepest of leagues.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Davies. Those matchups aren't all that imposing, so he could be useful in deeper leagues. He has had one really bad start but he has been otherwise fairly effective.
One-week bust: Hochevar. His matchup will lure people in, but you have to avoid him after the past two stinkers he has posted.

Los Angeles Angels

  1. Jered Weaver at TEX Wilson, at STL Carpenter
  2. Scott Kazmir at TEX Holland, at STL Lohse
  3. Joe Saunders at CHW Buehrle
  4. Ervin Santana at CHW Peavy
  5. Joel Pineiro at STL Penny

Two-starter(s): Weaver and Kazmir. Weaver is a must-start, while Kazmir is a questionable option that is best avoided with those difficult matchups if you have viable alternatives.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Saunders and Santana. They have gotten their early season funks out of their system and that White Sox offense really hasn't been a tough matchup yet.
One-week bust: Pineiro. He is getting a start against his old team, one that could put his two-start surge to an end, we say.

Los Angeles Dodgers

  1. Clayton Kershaw vs SD Correia
  2. Chad Billingsley vs DET Galarraga
  3. Hiroki Kuroda vs HOU Norris, vs DET Verlander
  4. John Ely vs HOU Rodriguez, vs DET Porcello
  5. Ramon Ortiz vs SD Garland

Two-starter(s): Kuroda and Ely. Kuroda is a must-start ace right now, while Ely is an advisable option already.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Ely. He has been outstanding since giving up some early runs in his major league debut. His 13-0 strikeout-to-walk ratio is impressive.
One-week bust: Ortiz. The journeyman who started the season in long relief cannot be trusted even if the Padres offense doesn't scare you.

Milwaukee Brewers

  1. Yovani Gallardo at CIN Cueto, at MIN Slowey
  2. Randy Wolf at PIT Burres
  3. Chris Narveson at PIT Maholm
  4. Dave Bush at MIN Blackburn
  5. Manny Parra at CIN Bailey, at MIN Pavano

Two-starter(s): Gallardo and Parra. Gallardo is a must-start, while Parra is a potential sleeper for deeper leagues going forward.
Who is getting skipped: Doug Davis. He has a heart issue and is headed for the DL.
One-week sleeper: Wolf. He is a solid option in that matchup despite a disappointing start to the season.
One-week bust: Parra. We like his potential but pick him up as a stashee this week to beat the rush. Don't start him immediately, though.

Minnesota Twins

  1. Francisco Liriano at BOS Lester
  2. Scott Baker at BOS Buchholz
  3. Kevin Slowey at TOR Eveland, vs MIL Gallardo
  4. Carl Pavano at TOR Marcum, vs MIL Suppan?
  5. Nick Blackburn vs MIL Bush

Two-starter(s): Slowey and Pavano. We consider both advisable options in mixed leagues.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Pavano. He has made four strong starts in a row and is underappreciated still in Fantasy.
One-week bust: Baker. He is a bit banged up and draws one of the tougher matchups of the week.

New York Mets

  1. Johan Santana at ATL Medlen, vs NYY Sabathia
  2. Mike Pelfrey at ATL Lowe, vs NYY Hughes
  3. John Maine at WAS Atilano
  4. Hisanori Takahashi vs NYY Vazquez
  5. TBD (Tobi Stoner or R.A. Dickey ) at WAS Hernandez

Two-starter(s): Santana and Pelfrey. Santana is a must-start, while Pelfrey is headed in the wrong direction after a strong start to the season and is a questionable option best left for NL-only leagues.
Who is getting skipped: Oliver Perez and Jonathon Niese (hamstring). Perez is going to stay in the bullpen and Niese is headed to the DL, perhaps for a while.
One-week sleeper: None. There is no trustworthy starter outside of Santana right now for the Mets or Fantasy owners.
One-week bust: Everyone not named Santana. Takahashi has the potential to surprise, but it is not going to happen against the Yankees in his first major-league start.

New York Yankees

  1. CC Sabathia vs BOS Beckett, vs NYM Santana
  2. A.J. Burnett vs TB Davis
  3. Andy Pettitte vs TB Shields
  4. Javier Vazquez vs NYM Takahashi
  5. Phil Hughes vs BOS Matsuzaka, at NYM Pelfrey

Two-starter(s): Sabathia and Hughes. They are must-starts in all leagues.
Who is getting skipped: Vazquez. He is getting a start this week still, though. He was much better last time out.
One-week sleeper: Vazquez. He draws the lowly Mets in the Subway Series against a 35-year-old who has never started a major league game.
One-week bust: None. All five of the Yankees starters should be active in all leagues.

By the Numbers: Al Melchior examines BABIP trends that forecast potential long-term trends
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Oakland Athletics

  1. Ben Sheets vs SEA Hernandez, vs SF Sanchez
  2. Dallas Braden vs DET Bonderman
  3. TBD (likely Vin Mazzaro) vs DET Willis
  4. Trevor Cahill vs SF Zito
  5. Gio Gonzalez vs SEA Rowland-Smith, vs SF Cain

Two-starter(s): Sheets and Gonzalez. They are advisable options in most leagues.
Who is getting skipped: Justin Duchscherer (hip). He looks headed for yet another season-ending surgery.
One-week sleeper: Gonzalez. He hasn't been great lately but he faces two teams that are not threatening offensively.
One-week bust: Mazzaro. We are not sure he is the one getting the recall, so use him at your own risk in deeper AL-only formats.

Philadelphia Phillies

  1. Roy Halladay vs PIT Duke, vs BOS Beckett
  2. Cole Hamels vs BOS Lackey
  3. Joe Blanton vs CHC Dempster
  4. Jamie Moyer vs CHC Gorzelanny
  5. Kyle Kendrick vs PIT Morton, vs BOS Matsuzaka

Two-starter(s): Halladay and Kendrick. Halladay is a must-start, while Kendrick is a questionable option best avoided outside of NL-only leagues.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Moyer. He proved in Colorado he really doesn't have to pitch well to pick up victories with this team.
One-week bust: Kendrick. He is not consistent enough to consider when you have so many two-start pitcher options available to you this week.

Pittsburgh Pirates

  1. Zach Duke at PHI Halladay, vs ATL Medlen
  2. Ross Ohlendorf vs ATL Hudson
  3. Paul Maholm vs MIL Narveson
  4. Brian Burres vs MIL Wolf
  5. Charlie Morton at PHI Kendrick, vs ATL Lowe

Two-starter(s): Duke and Morton. They are high-risk options in all leagues. Heck, Morton's 9.19 ERA is a cruel joke.
Who is getting skipped: None. Morton is headed out of the rotation with one more stinker perhaps, though.
One-week sleeper: Ohlendorf. He is the only Pirates pitcher worth owning in a mixed league right now.
One-week bust: Duke. He is technically the team's ace, but he is too erratic to consider outside of deeper NL-only formats, especially with that tough first matchup.

San Diego Padres

  1. Jon Garland at LAD Ortiz
  2. Kevin Correia at LAD Kershaw
  3. Wade LeBlac at SEA Lee
  4. Clayton Richard vs SF Cain, at SEA Rowland-Smith
  5. Mat Latos vs SF Sanchez, at SEA Hernandez

Two-starter(s): Richard and Latos. They are advisable options in most leagues amid their hot streaks.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Latos. He is riding an 18-inning scoreless streak and facing some punchless offensive teams.
One-week bust: Correia. Somehow he is the one Padres starter struggling right now. Don't use him in mixed leagues in that matchup.

San Francisco Giants

  1. Tim Lincecum at ARI Lopez
  2. Barry Zito at OAK Cahill
  3. Matt Cain at SD Richard, at OAK Gonzalez
  4. Jonathan O. Sanchez at SD Latos, at OAK Sheets
  5. Todd Wellemeyer at ARI Kennedy

Two-starter(s): Cain and Sanchez. They are must-starts in all leagues with those favorable matchups.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Sanchez. He probably is owned and active in most leagues anyway, but the Padres and A's make him more of a must-start this week than most.
One-week bust: Wellemeyer. He is coming off one of his best starts of the season, but the D-Backs offense is a bit dangerous to trust him in mixed leagues when there are so many two-start options available to us.

Seattle Mariners

  1. Felix Hernandez at OAK Sheets, vs SD Latos
  2. Cliff Lee vs SD LeBlanc
  3. Ryan Rowland-Smith at OAK Gonzalez, vs SD Richard
  4. Doug W. Fister vs TOR Cecil
  5. Jason M. Vargas vs TOR Romero

Two-starter(s): Hernandez and Rowland-Smith. King Felix is an obvious must-start, while Rowland-Smith is high-risk even in the deepest of AL-only leagues.
Who is getting skipped: None. Rowland-Smith could be in danger of pitching himself out of the rotation, though.
One-week sleeper: Fister and Vargas. They continue to be surprisingly effective for the Mariners and Fantasy owners, even in mixed formats.
One-week bust: Rowland-Smith. Ian Snell likely should be in the rotation over Rowland-Smith at this point.

St. Louis Cardinals

  1. Chris Carpenter vs WAS Lannan, vs LAA Weaver
  2. Adam Wainwright vs FLA Robertson
  3. Jaime Garcia vs FLA Sanchez
  4. Brad Penny vs LAA Pineiro
  5. Kyle Lohse vs WAS Stammen, vs LAA Kazmir

Two-starter(s): Carpenter and Lohse. Carpenter is an obvious must-start, while Lohse is a questionable option best left for deeper leagues.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Penny. He is 7-for-7 in quality starts this season and should be active in most formats until he proves otherwise.
One-week bust: Lohse. He isn't quite trustworthy enough to go with since there are likely so many better two-start pitcher options available to you.

Tampa Bay Rays

  1. James Shields at NYY Pettitte
  2. Matt Garza at HOU Myers
  3. Jeff Niemann vs CLE Carmona, at HOU Rodriguez
  4. David Price vs CLE Huff, at HOU Norris
  5. Wade Davis at NYY Burnett

Two-starter(s): Niemann and Price. They are must-starts in all leagues this week.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: None. All of the Rays starters are advisable options in all leagues regardless of the matchup(s) at this point.
One-week bust: Davis. We would still start him with confidence, but he pitching like the Rays No. 5 stater and draws the toughest opponent.

Texas Rangers

  1. C.J. Wilson vs LAA Weaver, vs CHC Silva
  2. Rich Harden vs BAL Guthrie
  3. Scott Feldman vs BAL Matusz
  4. Colby Lewis vs CHC Lilly
  5. Derek Holland vs LAA Kazmir, vs CHC Wells

Two-starter(s): Wilson and Holland. Wilson is a must-start, while Holland is at least an advisable option after his spectacular season debut.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Holland. There has had to be a rush for his services already, but we say start him in all formats right now.
One-week bust: Feldman. He draws a good matchup, but he is just pitching so unimpressively we have to consider him a sit in mixed leagues.

Toronto Blue Jays

  1. Shaun Marcum vs MIN Pavano, at ARI Buckner
  2. Brett Cecil at SEA Fister
  3. Ricky Romero at SEA Vargas
  4. Brandon Morrow at ARI Haren
  5. Dana Eveland vs MIN Slowey, at ARI Jackson

Two-starter(s): Marcum and Eveland. Marcum is hot and a must-start option, while Eveland is high-risk.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Morrow. He had a stinker start early last week, but he rebounded nicely Sunday and should strike out a lot of batters against the aggressive and young D-Backs.
One-week bust: Eveland. Not that you would use Eveland, but it is important to note he is the only Blue Jays starter we see as a sit this week.

Washington Nationals

  1. Livan Hernandez vs NYM TBD
  2. Scott Olsen vs BAL Hernandez
  3. John Lannan at STL Carpenter, vs BAL Millwood
  4. Craig Stammen at STL Lohse, vs BAL Bergesen
  5. Luis Atilano vs NYM Maine

Two-starter(s): Lannan and Stammen. They are high-risk options in all leagues.
Who is getting skipped: None.
One-week sleeper: Olsen and Atilano. They are going well enough to consider in deeper leagues, especially Olsen with that matchup.
One-week bust: Hernandez. He has been great this year, despite our continued efforts to suggest he is going to derail. He will be starting on three day's rest against the Mets on Wednesday. He is 0-4 with a 4.80 ERA on short rest in his career, in case you need yet another reason to anticipate a sudden decline.

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Player News
Gordon Beckham not off DL in time to start Thursday
by Marty Gitlin |
(10:36 am ET) White Sox second baseman Gordon Beckham had yet to be activated from the disabled list when the team released its starting lineup for the game Thursday in Detroit. He has been sidelined with an oblique injury.

Beckham could come off the DL later Thursday and return for the start of a home series against Tampa Bay on Friday.

Billy Hamilton resting Thursday
by Chris Cwik |
(10:34 am ET) Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton was not in the team's starting lineup Thursday against the Pirates.

Hamilton will be replaced by Chris Heisey in center. Despite his slow start, Hamilton has shown some promise lately. He's collected 11 hits over the past eight games. Hamilton is hitting .230, with nine steals.

Adam Eaton remains out for White Sox on Thursday
by Marty Gitlin |
(10:33 am ET) As White Sox center fielder Adam Eaton predicted Wednesday, he is out again Thursday. He is absent from the lineup against Detroit with a nagging hamstring problem.

Eaton, who has missed the last four games, had slumped off after a sensational start. He was on a 3-for-23 slide, but his average still stands at .282.

Russell Martin sitting out Thursday
by Chris Cwik |
(10:28 am ET) Pirates catcher Russell Martin is not in the team's starting lineup Thursday against the Reds.

Martin is likely received a day off so he doesn't have to play in a day game following Wednesday's night game. Martin also received a one-game suspension for his actions during the team's recent dust-up with the Brewers, but he has appealed the ruling. There's no indication Martin has changed course and is taking his suspension Thursday.

Conor Gillaspie back in lineup
by Marty Gitlin |
(10:27 am ET) White Sox third baseman Conor Gillaspie is set to return to the lineup Thursday in Detroit after missing two games with a hand ailment.

Gillaspie will try to pick up where he left off. He has hit safely in 15 of 16 games this season, owns a four-game hitting streak and boasts a stat line of .302/.347/.413.

Mark Appel rocked in Wednesday start as velocity down
by Marty Gitlin |
(10:19 am ET) Astros premier pitching prospect Mark Appel didn't pitch like it Wednesday for Class-A Advanced Lancaster. He surrendered three earned runs on six hits in 2 1/3 innings with two strikeouts.

Also concerning is that he tossed his fastball consistently around 90 mph, far below the mid-90s to which he had become accustomed.

Curtis Granderson gets a day off Thursday
by Chris Cwik |
(10:15 am ET) Mets outfielder Curtis Granderson was not in the team's starting lineup Thursday against the Cardinals.

It's a routine day off for Granderson. He'll be replaced in right field by 40-year-old Bobby Abreu, who is making his first start as a Met. Granderson is hitting .125 in 72 at-bats to open the season.

Bobby Abreu gets first start
by Chris Cwik |
(10:09 am ET) Mets outfielder Bobby Abreu made his first start of the season Thursday against the Cardinals.

Abreu signed with the team in early April, and was called up Monday. He'll play right field and hit sixth against Lance Lynn. 

Jared Hughes sent down Thursday
by Chris Cwik |
(10:04 am ET) The Pirates have sent pitcher Jared Hughes to Triple-A.

Hughes appeared in just one game with the club, earning a win against the Reds. Hughes was sent down in order to make room for Brandon Cumpton, who will slot into the rotation.

Brandon Cumpton headed to Pittsburgh
by Chris Cwik |
(10:01 am ET) The Pirates have called up pitcher Brandon Cumpton Thursday.

Cumpton is expected to replace Wandy Rodriguez in the team's rotation. In order to make room for Cumpton, Jared Hughes was optioned to Triple-A. Cumpton has posted a 1.42 ERA over three starts in the minors.