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Hit Parade for Week 4

Senior Fantasy Writer
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After three weeks of trying something new, I've decided to ammend this year's Hit Parade so that it more closely resembles last year's.

Though time constraints factor in to what I can and can't do, my first priority is to write something people will benefit from reading. Some of the feedback we've received over the last three weeks suggests the new approach was a step in the wrong direction.

If you'd like to weigh in on the matter, drop me a line on Twitter (@CBSScottWhite). Compare this week's Hit Parade to last week's and tell me which you like better. I have a feeling I know what the answer will be.

In this version, I've assessed Fantasy-relevant hitters based on streaks, matchups, injuries and lineup changes and divided them into five categories: "no-brainers," "advisable starts," "shaky starts," "strictly AL/NL-only" and "don't bother."

These designations rate each player's Fantasy value for the current week only and have no bearing on his value for the season as a whole.

Any players not appearing on these lists are presumed to be below "don't bother" status and are obvious sits in Fantasy.

All stats are updated through Wednesday, April 17. Injuries are shown in parentheses.

Most Added Hitters (as of 4/19)
Player Name % change
1. Brandon Crawford, SS, Giants 45
2. Evan Gattis, C, Braves 41
3. Chris Carter, OF, Astros 25
4. Chris Johnson, 3B, Braves 25
5. Josh Donaldson, 3B, Athletics 24
6. John Buck, C, Mets 21
7. Nate Schierholtz, OF, Cubs 20
8. Everth Cabrera, SS, Padres 18
9. Daniel Nava, OF, Red Sox 17
10. Daniel Murphy, 2B, Mets 16

Catcher

This offseason, the Mariners decided they could live with Jesus Montero's shortcomings behind the plate as long as he lived up to his potential at the plate. So far, he has not, and so Kelly Shoppach has gotten the nod over him in three of the team's last five games. Montero has favorable matchups against the Astros and Angels this week, so if they don't get him going, he might have a hard time reclaiming regular at-bats apart from a lineup shuffle that frees up the DH spot. Avoid him for now.

Worth a second look: Evan Gattis, Braves
Gattis has cooled off over his last five games, going 2 for 19, but he has become such a critical part of the Braves lineup that you can count on him remaining a part of it at least until Brian McCann comes back. He has three games at Coors Field this week and also gets to beat up on Rick Porcello when the Braves travel to Detroit (DH, anyone?), so I expect him to come roaring back.
Approach with caution: Salvador Perez, Royals
Not only is Perez off to a slow start this season with a sub-.600 OPS, but he has to face Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez to start out the week, followed by three more righties in the Indians series. He hit .279 with a .711 OPS against righties last year compared to .358 and 1.021 OPS against lefties, so now isn't the time for a rebound.

No-brainers: Buster Posey, Joe Mauer, Carlos Santana, Yadier Molina, Matt Wieters, Wilin Rosario, Mike Napoli
Advisable starts: Miguel Montero, Jonathan Lucroy, Evan Gattis, A.J. Pierzynski
Shaky starts: Salvador Perez, Jesus Montero, John Buck, J.P. Arencibia, Ryan Doumit, Tyler Flowers, Alex Avila, Russell Martin, John Jaso, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, A.J. Ellis
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Iannetta, Welington Castillo, Kurt Suzuki, Derek Norris, Jason Castro, Francisco Cervelli, Rob Brantly, Nick Hundley, Devin Mesoraco, Erik Kratz
Don't bother: Kelly Shoppach, Martin Maldonado, Michael McKenry, David Ross, Carlos Ruiz (suspension), Yasmani Grandal (suspension), Brian McCann (wrist), Wilson Ramos (hamstring), Mike Zunino, Travis d'Arnaud

Best Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Rangers @LAA3, @MIN4
2. Mariners @HOU3, LAA4
3. Phillies PIT4, @NYM3
4. Cubs @CIN3, @MIA4
5. Red Sox OAK3, HOU4

First base

Looks like Freddie Freeman's stay on the DL will be a minimal one. Sidelined since the team's fifth game with a strained oblique, he's been taking swings in the cage and seems to be on track to return Monday at Colorado. Three games at Coors Field should help him shake off the rust pretty quickly, so unless you're just loaded at first base, you'll want Freeman in your lineup this week.

Worth a second look: Lance Berkman, Rangers
Berkman has had to sit out four of the team's last seven games, partially because the Rangers seem reluctant to use him against left-handed pitchers and partially because they've been without the DH during their current series at the Cubs. They'll be back in the American League all of this week, though, and are facing five of the league's most hittable righties in Joe Blanton, Tommy Hanson, Vance Worley, Kevin Correia and Mike Pelfrey. For what it's worth, the two lefties on tap are pretty hittable themselves.
Approach with caution: Ike Davis, Mets
Davis' dreadful start has the Mets experimenting with other options at first base. He has sat out two of the team's last three games against lefties, which isn't too surprising considering he hit .174 against them last year. It's pretty scary in a week he's scheduled to face four lefties, though, especially when their names are Ted Lilly, Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-Jin Ryu and Cole Hamels.

No-brainers: Joey Votto, Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, Adrian Gonzalez, Buster Posey, Edwin Encarnacion, Joe Mauer, Billy Butler, Paul Goldschmidt
Advisable starts: Carlos Santana, Allen Craig, Anthony Rizzo, Paul Konerko, Freddie Freeman (oblique), Ryan Howard, Nick Swisher, Mark Trumbo, Chris Davis, Mike Napoli, Matt Carpenter, Lance Berkman, Todd Frazier, Michael Cuddyer (hamstring), Kendrys Morales
Shaky starts: Ike Davis, Eric Hosmer, Justin Morneau, Adam LaRoche, Kevin Youkilis, Adam Dunn, Brandon Belt, Yonder Alonso, Mark Reynolds, Michael Young, Brandon Moss, Chris Carter
Strictly AL/NL-only: Carlos Pena, Justin Smoak, Adam Lind, Jeff Keppinger, Matt Adams, Chris Johnson, Garrett Jones, Chris Parmelee, Mitch Moreland, Greg Dobbs
Don't bother: Todd Helton, Jordan Pacheco, John Mayberry, James Loney, Yuniesky Betancourt, Lyle Overbay, Mark Teixeira (wrist), Corey Hart (knee), Logan Morrison (knee), Mike Olt, Jonathan Singleton,

Second base

Aaron Hill's fractured hand isn't all bad news for Fantasy owners. In his absence, Martin Prado has gotten a chance to play second base and is now only two games shy of gaining eligibility at the position in standard leagues. He's not playing it every day, so he may not gain it over the weekend, but if he does, he's a no-brainer at the position for next week.

Worth a second look: Josh Rutledge, Rockies
Rutledge isn't off to the greatest start with the bat, but his feet have helped make up for it. After going 7 for 7 on stolen bases in 73 games last year, he's already 4 for 4 this year, which helps explain why he's the No. 3 second baseman in Head-to-Head leagues over the last seven days. Clearly, new manager Walt Weiss is going to let him run. With three games at Coors Field and four games at Arizona this week, he should get on base often to make an impact in mixed leagues.
Approach with caution: Jason Kipnis, Indians
Looks like Kipnis has picked up where he left off in the second half last year, which isn't at all a good thing. Though the elbow injury that has already sidelined him for four games shouldn't hold him out over the weekend, it likely won't help him snap out of his season-opening 4-for-32 slump. Neither will his matchups against Jose Quintana, Chris Sale and Jake Peavy to begin this week.

No-brainers: Robinson Cano, Dustin Pedroia, Ian Kinsler, Ben Zobrist, Brandon Phillips, Chase Utley
Advisable starts: Jose Altuve, Matt Carpenter, Rickie Weeks, Josh Rutledge
Shaky starts: Dan Uggla, Neil Walker, Jason Kipnis, Howie Kendrick, Jedd Gyorko, Daniel Murphy, Danny Espinosa (wrist), Marco Scutaro, Dustin Ackley, Emilio Bonifacio
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Nelson, Kelly Johnson, Omar Infante, Darwin Barney, Donovan Solano, Mark Ellis, Jeff Keppinger, Chris Getz, Cliff Pennington
Don't bother: Yuniesky Betancourt, Eric Sogard, Brian Dozier, Daniel Descalso, Maicer Izturis, Aaron Hill (wrist), Brian Roberts (hamstring), Gordon Beckham (wrist), Logan Forsythe (foot), Jurickson Profar, Jemile Weeks, Kolten Wong

Third base

Luis Jimenez has started the last five games at third base for the Angels with Alberto Callaspo sidelined by a tight calf. Callaspo's injury might not require a DL stint, but it's not like the Angels are itching to get him back in the lineup. He was always miscast as an everyday player. Jimenez, thought not a top prospect, has hit at every level of the minors and is off to a terrific start in Callaspo's place. His lack of plate discipline will likely catch up to him sooner or later, but AL-only owners should take note of him.

Worth a second look: Kyle Seager, Mariners
Seager's batting average has been hovering around the Mendoza line, but he entered play Thursday with a modest six-game hitting streak and an MLB-leading seven doubles. His matchups this week against Brad Peacock, Bud Norris, Lucas Harrell, Garrett Richards, C.J. Wilson, Joe Blanton and Jason Vargas should turn that little flicker into a full-fledged flame, especially since five of them are righties. He hit only .237 against lefties last year.
Approach with caution: Kevin Youkilis, Yankees
Even if Youkilis' new stance is largely responsible for this hot start, he's probably due for a bit of a cool down and has the kind of matchups this week that might even make it a foregone conclusion. In a seven-game week, he's facing Matt Moore, David Price, Alex Cobb, Josh Johnson and R.A. Dickey, among others, so if you've been itching to swap him out for a Matt Carpenter or Brett Lawrie type, this week is a good time to do so.

No-brainers: Miguel Cabrera, Evan Longoria, Adrian Beltre, David Wright, Ryan Zimmerman (hamstring), Martin Prado, Pablo Sandoval
Advisable starts: Chase Headley, Matt Carpenter, Will Middlebrooks, Todd Frazier, Kyle Seager
Shaky starts: Brett Lawrie, Kevin Youkilis, David Freese, Pedro Alvarez, Mike Moustakas, Jedd Gyorko, Manny Machado, Lonnie Chisenhall, Michael Young, Josh Donaldson, Trevor Plouffe
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Nelson, Chris Johnson, Jeff Keppinger, Juan Francisco, Placido Polanco, Matt Dominguez, Luis Cruz, Greg Dobbs, Alberto Callaspo (calf)
Don't bother: Yuniesky Betancourt, Luis Valbuena, Eric Chavez, Jordan Pacheco, Maicer Izturis, Daniel Descalso, Hanley Ramirez (thumb), Aramis Ramirez (knee), Alex Rodriguez (hip), Wilson Betemit (knee), Ian Stewart (quadriceps), Wilson Betemit (knee), Nolan Arenado, Nick Castellanos, Anthony Rendon

Worst Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Tigers KC3, ATL3
2. Mets LAD3, PHI3
3. Yankees @TB3, TOR4
4. Royals @DET3, CLE3
5. Padres MIL3, SF3

Shortstop

Hanley Ramirez is looking to surprise people with how quickly he returns from thumb surgery, saying it will be "way sooner" than the original mid-May timetable. How much is "way" is a judgment call, of course, but I'm guessing it measures weeks rather than days, which means I'm on the lookout for Ramirez to return before the end of April. I'm not suggesting anyone should start him this week, but I'd keep an eye out for further developments this weekend.

Worth a second look: Andrelton Simmons, Braves
Granted, a thumb injury in the season's opening week didn't help, but Simmons hasn't performed up to anyone's expectations so far. The home run Sunday was a good sign, but considering he has only one double, the pop has been lacking so far. I get the feeling we'll see more of it during the Braves' three games at Coors Field to open the week. In a lineup full of home run hitters, all Simmons needs to do to matter in mixed leagues is get on base.
Approach with caution: Alcides Escobar, Royals
Escobar was a firecracker to start the year but has been a dud over his last six games, going 4 for 25. As rarely as he walks, when he's slumping, it really shows. He still has top-10 potential at shortstop, but Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez won't help him get back on track this week. Go with a Simmons or Everth Cabrera instead.

No-brainers: Troy Tulowitzki, Ben Zobrist, Ian Desmond, Starlin Castro, Jimmy Rollins
Advisable starts: Elvis Andrus, Asdrubal Cabrera, Jed Lowrie, Josh Rutledge, Andrelton Simmons
Shaky starts: Everth Cabrera, Alcides Escobar, Jean Segura, Danny Espinosa, Marco Scutaro, J.J. Hardy, Zack Cozart, Jhonny Peralta, Brandon Crawford
Strictly AL/NL-only: Yunel Escobar, Stephen Drew, Cliff Pennington, Eduardo Nunez, Ruben Tejada, Luis Cruz, Pete Kozma
Don't bother: Marwin Gonzalez, Eric Sogard, Brian Dozier, Maicer Izturis, Deniel Descalso, Clint Barmes, Alex Gonzalez, Jose Reyes (leg), Hanley Ramirez (thumb), Erick Aybar (heel), Derek Jeter (ankle), Hiroyuki Nakajima (hamstring), Dee Gordon, Billy Hamilton

Outfield

In Minnesota, Oswaldo Arcia has taken the roster spot of Darin Mastroianni, who had to go on the DL with an ankle injury, but unlike Mastroianni, he has little experience in center field. This should bother Fantasy owners for two reasons. One, it means Aaron Hicks' job is safe for the time being. Two, it means Arcia, who's looking like the more intriguing of the two prospects right now, won't be getting regular at-bats. Hopefully, he steals enough from Chris Parmelee and Ryan Doumit to factor in deeper leagues, but you shouldn't roll the dice on him just yet.

Worth a second look: Carlos Gomez, Brewers and Coco Crisp, Athletics
Gomez was a popular drop when he got off to a 6-for-37 start, but with three consecutive three-hit games, his batting average is suddenly up to .300. Granted, he needs to pick it up on the base paths since steals are supposed to be his primary contribution, but when he's hitting well, I'd trust in him. He faces hittable pitchers like Jason Marquis, Tyson Ross, Edinson Volquez and Ted Lilly this week. As for Crisp, even with his recent bout with a groin injury, he's still the highest scoring outfielder in Head-to-Head leagues so far, outpacing even Justin Upton. He's perennially one of the more underrated hitters in Fantasy when he's able to take the field, so you want him active while he's performing well.
Approach with caution: Ichiro Suzuki, Yankees and Torii Hunter, Tigers
Suzuki is almost too obvious given the way he's started the season, but it's worth noting that, perhaps in response to his sub-.200 batting average, the Yankees have taken to sitting him in favor Brennan Boesch against left-handers. They face four lefties in their seven games this week, and the three righties are Alex Cobb, Josh Johnson and R.A. Dickey. Hunter, meanwhile, is off to a hot start, but it's been mostly singles so far. Against Wade Davis, James Shields, Ervin Santana, Paul Maholm, Kris Medlen and Mike Minor this week, he might have trouble maintaining that pace.

No-brainers: Ryan Braun, Mike Trout, Matt Kemp, Andrew McCutchen, Justin Upton, Giancarlo Stanton, Josh Hamilton, Carlos Gonzalez, Ben Zobrist, Bryce Harper, Matt Holliday, Adam Jones, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jay Bruce, Shin-Soo Choo, Alex Gordon, Alex Rios
Advisable starts: Jose Bautista (back), Martin Prado, Jason Heyward, Allen Craig, Austin Jackson, Desmond Jennings, B.J. Upton, Melky Cabrera, Michael Morse, Shane Victorino, Josh Willingham (illness), Andre Ethier, Nick Swisher, Nelson Cruz, Mark Trumbo, Nick Markakis, Carl Crawford, Jayson Werth, Norichika Aoki, Dexter Fowler (foot), Chris Davis, Matt Carpenter, Carlos Gomez, Hunter Pence, Coco Crisp, Michael Cuddyer (hamstring)
Shaky starts: Carlos Beltran, Ben Revere, Josh Reddick, Starling Marte, Evan Gattis, Angel Pagan, Alejandro De Aza, David Murphy, Torii Hunter, Ichiro Suzuki, Alfonso Soriano, Brett Gardner, Domonic Brown (back), Ryan Doumit, Lucas Duda (back), Denard Span (illness), Carlos Quentin, Jon Jay, Lorenzo Cain, Brandon Moss, Colby Rasmus, Franklin Gutierrez, Gerardo Parra
Strictly AL/NL-only: Chris Young, Nate Schierholtz, Daniel Nava, Leonys Martin, Jackie Bradley, Emilio Bonifacio, Juan Pierre, Aaron Hicks, Andy Dirks, Justin Ruggiano, Matt Joyce, Cody Ross, Michael Brantley, Garrett Jones, Dayan Viciedo, Peter Bourjos, Justin Maxwell, Drew Stubbs, Nate McLouth, Will Venable, Raul Ibanez, Oswaldo Arcia, Jeff Francoeur, Nolan Reimold, David DeJesus, Chris Denorfia, Chris Heisey, Chris Parmelee, Rajai Davis, Greg Dobbs, Jordany Valdespin, Michael Saunders (shoulder)
Don't bother: Travis Snider, Jonny Gomes, Collin Cowgill, A.J. Pollock, J.D. Martinez, Marlon Byrd, John Mayberry, Stephen Lombardozzi, Eric Young, Gregor Blanco, Yoenis Cespedes (hand), Curtis Granderson (forearm), Michael Bourn (hand), Corey Hart (knee), Adam Eaton (elbow), Jason Kubel (quadriceps), Ryan Ludwick (shoulder), Delmon Young (ankle), Darin Mastroianni (ankle), Cameron Maybin (wrist), Logan Morrison (knee), Wil Myers, Oscar Taveras, Yasiel Puig, Christian Yelich

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Scott White at @CBSScottWhite . You can also e-mail us at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

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Player News
Astros OF George Springer swipes three bases Monday
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:42 am ET) Astros outfielder George Springer didn't have a hit or RBI on Monday against the Padres. However, he still found a way to make an impact in a 9-4 win.

Springer drew three walks Monday and had a career-high three stolen bases. He had never had more than one stolen base in a game prior to Monday. He also finished with two runs and two strikeouts.

Springer, who is 7 of 8 in stolen-base attempts this season, is batting .235 (8 for 34) with a .500 slugging percentage, .872 OPS, two home runs, three doubles, four RBI, eight runs, eight walks, 12 strikeouts and five stolen bases in his last nine games.


Mets recall Rafael Montero from Triple-A Las Vegas
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10:33 am ET) The Mets recalled pitcher Rafael Montero from Triple-A Las Vegas Tuesday.

Montero will make his first start of the season Tuesday in Miami after opening the season in the bullpen and being send down to the minors to prepare for a starting role. He is expected to stick in the rotation, as the team will turn to a six-man rotation temporarily to help reduce the workload on Matt Harvey's arm.

Montero struggled in two Triple-A starts, giving up six runs (five earned) in 7 2/3 innings but racking up seven strikeouts against only one walk.


Astros not ready to promote Preston Tucker, but is on team's radar
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:13 am ET) Astros outfield prospect Preston Tucker is off to a torrid start for Triple-A Fresno. The 24-year-old outfielder is batting .338 with a .689 slugging percentage, eight home runs and a minor-league leading 26 RBI in 18 games. 

Still, the Astros opted to promote L.J. Hoes on Monday to occupy a spot on the bench instead of Tucker, despite his hot start to the season.

“Tuck’s in the time of his career where he he’s trying to get himself noticed and he wants to be the next guy called up,” manager A.J. Hinch said, per the Houston Chronicle. “And right now our outfield’s playing very well. (Jake) Marisnick obviously is playing the best in the outfield on both sides of the ball. George Springer’s obviously a big part of our future and our present. (Colby) Rasmus is playing well.

“So I think it’s difficult for any of these young guys to break in. And when you have a good roster that you’re comfortable with, it’s even harder. But that doesn’t mean that their time wouldn’t come based on injury or based on extreme performance, and Tuck’s being very noticed with what he’s doing down at Triple-A.”


Cubs' Epstein: Starlin Castro is 'playing really good baseball'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10:03 am ET) Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein praised shortstop Starlin Castro before Monday's 4-0 win over the Pirates, saying the shortstop is "playing really good baseball," MLB.com reports.

"I've always thought Starlin was a really, really good player,'' Epstein said. "His defense took a big step forward last year and he's carried it over into this year. He gets a little chance to hide in the lineup now. He doesn't have to be the focal point for the opposition. He's playing really good baseball on both sides. I'm proud of him.''

Manager Joe Maddon, who is Castro's fifth manager over the last six seasons, agrees.

"He's been really good,'' Maddon said. "I mean really good.''

Maddon added that Castro has taken a leadership role with Jorge Soler and the team's other young Latin players, helping them feel welcome at Wrigley Field and elsewhere.

"His interaction with them is really taking on the form of a veteran leadership kind of thing,'' Maddon said. "Right now, I can't say enough good things about the guy. I've been really impressed.''

Castro went 1 for 4 Monday and owns a .324/.351/.419 line with two home runs, 11 RBI and one stolen base in 74 at-bats.


Cubs' Addison Russell singles, scores run in Wrigley debut
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:55 am ET) Cubs rookie second baseman Addison Russell made his debut at Wrigley Field Monday, going 1 for 3 with a single and a run scored in his team's 4-0 win over the Pirates.

"It's great to have them here to watch me play on the big stage," Russell said of his parents, Wayne and Milany Russell, per MLB.com. "It's kind of humbling to remember where you came from. It's kind of like a warm feeling. They helped me get to this point. I'm glad they're here."

Manger Joe Maddon cautioned the need to be patient with Russell, who played just 14 games at Triple-A and was working on his footwork with infield coach Gary Jones before the game then committed a fielding error Monday night.

"You've got to put your scout's cap on and visualize what this could look like," Maddon said. "Once he can really exhale and just catch his breath, he'll start hitting the baseball."

Russell is just 4 for 25 with two doubles, four RBI and 13 strikeouts in six games.


Rays' Alex Cobb throws 30 pitches in bullpen session Monday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:43 am ET) Rays pitcher Alex Cobb (forearm) threw 30 pitches in a bullpen session Monday, the Tampa Tribune reports.

Cobb opened the season on the disabled list due to forearm tendinitis. Provided he doesn't encounter a setback, he's expected to throw two more bullpen sessions before facing batters in live batting practice. Cobb has delivered back-to-back seasons with ERAs under 3.00, going 10-9 with a 2.87 ERA and 149:47 K:BB ratio in 166 1/3 innings in 2014.


Red Sox's Mookie Betts smacks walkoff single vs. Blue Jays
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:37 am ET) Red Sox center fielder Mookie Betts went 3 for 4 with a walk, a double and a walkoff RBI single in his team's 6-5 win over the Blue Jays.

"I wasn't expecting slider," Betts said after the game about his game-winning hit off Miguel Castro with Xander Bogaerts and Ryan Hanigan in scoring position, per MLB.com. "I was stuck on 100 [mph]. He threw it, I recognized it, saw it in the dirt. Good job by Bogey and Hanny to move up. He didn't want to throw another one in the dirt. I was just ready for a fastball."

Betts has been stuck in a bit of a rut and was 0 for 9 in his last two games heading into Monday.

"You know, you see the looseness in his hands, and when he generates that rhythm, the bat speed is there," manager John Farrell said. "He didn't miss a couple of fastballs [down the] middle of the plate. The one thing we're seeing in the early going here is after a tough day, he's able to put it behind him."

Betts has hit .218/.303/.333 with two home runs, 10 RBI and five stolen bases in 78 at-bats.


Astros SP Collin McHugh receives no-decision Monday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(1:51 am ET) Despite producing six solid innings of work, it was not enough to earn Astros pitcher Collin McHugh a win during Monday's victory over the Padres.

McHugh tossed six innings and allowed three runs on seven hits. He also struck out five batters, while walking none. His ERA now stands at 2.92.

The no-decision was the first time this season McHugh (3-0) failed to record a win for his efforts.

His next projected start will be Saturday against the Mariners.


Padres SP James Shields strikes out 12 in loss Monday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(1:49 am ET) Despite striking out 12 batters in just six innings Monday, it was not enough for Padres pitcher James Shields to earn a win.

Shields (2-0) tossed six innings and allowed three runs (one earned) on six hits during Monday's 9-4 loss to the Dodgers. The 12 strike outs were a season high for Shields. He also walked one batter and gave up a solo home run to Jed Lowrie in the fourth inning. He received a no-decsion and his ERA now stands at 2.90

His next scheduled start will be Sunday against the Rockies.


Astros LF Colby Rasmus collects three RBI during Monday's game
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(1:45 am ET) Astros outfielder Colby Rasmus drove in three runs to help lead the Astros to a 9-4 win over the Padres on Monday.

Rasmus was 2 for 5 during the game. One of the hits was his third home run of the season when he connected off reliever Cory Mazzoni on a two-run shot in the ninth inning.

Rasmus has collected two hits in each of his last three games. He is now hitting .273.


 
 
 
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