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Start and sit hitters for Week 11

Senior Fantasy Writer
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All stats are updated through Thursday, June 5.

Frustrated by his continued lack of production, the Yankees have decided to sit Alfonso Soriano against right-handers for the time being, turning over the majority of his at-bats to Ichiro Suzuki. As streaky as he's been known to be, he could end that arrangement in a week's time, but at least for right now, you don't want to have to count on him in mixed leagues.

Scott's sleepers for Week 11
Player Own/Start %
1. Josh Willingham, OF, MIN 55/45
2. Adam Lind, 1B, TOR 50/42
3. Nick Markakis, OF, BAL 79/65
4. Lonnie Chisenhall, 1B/3B, CLE 69/55
5. Torii Hunter, OF, DET 82/62
6. Brett Lawrie, 2B/3B, TOR 84/67
7. Aramis Ramirez, 3B, MIL 80/33
8. Corey Dickerson, OF, COL 40/27
9. Michael Bourn, OF, CLE 57/42
10. Juan Francisco, 1B/3B, TOR 60/45

Mike Napoli is set to return Sunday after missing about two weeks with a sprained finger. He was slumping just before the injury but remained "too obvious" at first base because of his high walk rate. At a deep position, you can afford to play it safe and wait another week to activate him, but there's no shame in starting him either.

With Carlos Gonzalez sidelined by a finger injury that could potentially require surgery, Corey Dickerson is in line for more at-bats in Colorado. Judging by his minor-league track record and the fact he has hit .340 with seven home runs and a 1.028 OPS in 97 at-bats this year, that's potentially a big deal in Fantasy, but of course, if manager Walt Weiss doesn't see fit to start Charlie Blackmon against lefties, the same figures to be true for Dickerson. He's a sleeper this week regardless.

And with that, on to the position-by-position breakdown ...

Catcher

Too obvious: Buster Posey, Yadier Molina, Jonathan Lucroy, Joe Mauer, Brian McCann, Miguel Montero, Wilin Rosario, Carlos Santana, Evan Gattis, Devin Mesoraco, Salvador Perez

Start: A.J. Pierzynski, Red Sox
Pierzynski was a "sit" in Fantasy Week 10 (June 9-15) and has fittingly slowed down a little over the last few days, but he's still batting .370 (20 for 54) over his last 13 games. The matchups should work more to his benefit this week. He'll be facing Bud Norris, Chris Tillman, Wei-Yin Chen, Josh Tomlin, Justin Masterson and T.J. House in a seven-game week.
Instead of: Wilson Ramos, Carlos Ruiz, Kurt Suzuki

Sit: Derek Norris, Athletics
Not only do the Athletics have the worst matchups of any team this week, facing pitchers like Garrett Richards, Tyler Skaggs, Jered Weaver, Hiroki Kuroda and Masahiro Tanaka in their six games, but Norris figures to sit half of them, having slumped his way out of regular playing time with a .145 (8 for 5) batting average and one home run in his last 19 games. He has started four of the team's last nine.
Instead of: Pierzynski, Yan Gomes, Dioner Navarro

First base

Too obvious: Miguel Cabrera, Paul Goldschmidt, Edwin Encarnacion, Albert Pujols, Freddie Freeman, Jose Abreu, Chris Davis, Adrian Gonzalez, Victor Martinez, Brandon Moss, Anthony Rizzo, Allen Craig, Michael Morse, Buster Posey, Michael Cuddyer, Justin Morneau, Jonathan Lucroy

Start: Adam Lind, Blue Jays
Lind has obviously been hot since returning from a back injury May 8, batting .360 (27 for 75) with nine doubles and two homers in 22 games. But because he sits against left-handed pitchers, he's been lacking in point production during that time. That won't be an issue this week with nothing but righties on tap for the Blue Jays. And against the Twins and Orioles, about the toughest they'll face is Phil Hughes.
Instead of: Ryan Howard, Jon Singleton, Lucas Duda

Sit: Garrett Jones, Marlins
Jones collected three hits Thursday to snap out of a 5-for-33 (.152) spell, but he'll have to get much hotter than that to make any real impact with only five games on the schedule for the Marlins this week. And considering one of those games is against Yu Darvish, it's really more like four. Or three when you factor in the lefty. Jones is batting .200 with a .488 OPS against left-handed pitchers this season.
Instead of: Lind, Mark Teixeira, Juan Francisco

Second base

Too obvious: Robinson Cano, Ian Kinsler, Jose Altuve, Matt Carpenter, Brian Dozier, Dustin Pedroia, Chase Utley, Anthony Rendon, Daniel Murphy, Jason Kipnis, Dee Gordon, Martin Prado, Ben Zobrist, Howie Kendrick, Neil Walker

Five Best Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Cubs @PIT4, @PHI3
2. Tigers @CHW4, MIN3
3. Blue Jays MIN3, @BAL4
4. Braves @COL4, LAA3
5. Red Sox @BAL3, CLE4

Start: Tommy La Stella, Braves
Second base is deep enough that relatively high-end options like Aaron Hill, Brandon Phillips and Yangervis Solarte don't exactly qualify as "too obvious" but are nevertheless more advisable than someone like La Stella, so consider this recommendation for deeper leagues only. For what La Stella lacks in power and speed, he makes up for in on-base ability. It was plainly evident in the minors and has so far translated to the majors, which puts him in line to bunches of runs in the Braves' four-game series at Colorado this week. He may not directly benefit from the hitter-friendly venue, but the rest of the lineup will.
Instead of: Gordon Beckham, Kolten Wong, Rougned Odor

Sit: Jed Lowrie, Athletics
This Lowrie pick is kind of like last week's Dee Gordon pick in that it applies more for second base than shortstop, where you won't find nearly as many alternatives. Lowrie has actually begun to turn things around after a mostly disastrous May, batting .333 (5 for 15) with a homer in his last four games, but the position is so deep and the matchups so tough (Garrett Richards, Tyler Skaggs, Jered Weaver, Hiroki Kuroda and Masahiro Tanaka) that you have no reason to clear an opening for him.
Instead of: Aaron Hill, Yangervis Solarte, Brandon Phillips

Third base

Too obvious: Miguel Cabrera, Josh Donaldson, Adrian Beltre, David Wright, Evan Longoria, Matt Carpenter, Anthony Rendon, Ryan Zimmerman, Todd Frazier, Martin Prado, Xander Bogaerts, Pablo Sandoval, Kyle Seager, Pedro Alvarez

Start: Lonnie Chisenhall, Indians
Once again, the Indians face almost exclusively right-handers this week -- six in seven games -- which means Chisenhall should play just about every day even with Carlos Santana back. His year-to-date batting average of .361 pretty much says it all, and it's not like he's slowed down recently, batting .321 (9 for 28) with a home run and a double in his last eight games. Plus, some of the righties he's facing this week -- like Nick Marktinez, Jeremy Guthrie, Jake Peavy and Brandon Workman -- are especially hittable.
Instead of: Yangervis Solarte, Trevor Plouffe, Aramis Ramirez

Sit: Josh Harrison, Pirates
Having earned more at-bats with his high-energy play, Harrison's numbers are beginning to attract attention as well. A third base-eligible player with a .317 batting average and .869 OPS typically doesn't last long on waivers, but in this particular case, you may want to show some restraint. Though top prospect Gregory Polanco didn't arrive Friday as rumored, he's likely just days away and figures to bump Harrison to the bench whenever he does arrive. No reason to risk it for a player who has probably performed over his head anyway.
Instead of: Ramirez, Juan Francisco, Chase Headley

Shortstop

Too obvious: Troy Tulowitzki, Hanley Ramirez, Ian Desmond, Jose Reyes, Alexei Ramirez, Elvis Andrus, Dee Gordon, Ben Zobrist, Xander Bogaerts, Starlin Castro, Jean Segura

Five Worst Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Athletics @LAA3, NYY3
2. Cardinals @TB2, WAS3
3. White Sox DET4, KC3
4. Nationals @SF4, @STL3
5. Marlins @TEX2, PIT3

Start: Alcides Escobar, Royals
Now that he's back to being one of the game's top base-stealers after slumping in every capacity last season, anytime Escobar is hitting is noteworthy in Fantasy. He's 8 for 17 (.471) with a stolen base so far in June and will get to face hittable lefties Vidal Nuno, Jose Quintana and John Danks (as well as hittable righty Hector Noesi) in his six games this week. Escobar has hit .340 with an .880 OPS against lefties this season compared to .255 and .650 against righties.
Instead of: Everth Cabrera, Andrelton Simmons, Asdrubal Cabrera

Sit; Jhonny Peralta, Cardinals
Among the group of fallback shortstops that includes Escobar, Erick Aybar, Andrelton Simmons, Everth Cabrera, J.J. Hardy and Asdrubal Cabrera, Peralta gets the short straw with the Cardinals' short schedule this week. They play only five games, including three against the Nationals' top three (at least with Gio Gonzalez down) of Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg and Doug Fister. Plus, Peralta hasn't exactly been tearing the cover off the ball lately, batting .118 (6 for 51) in his last 14 games.
Instead of: Escobar, J.J. Hardy, Erick Aybar

Outfield

Too obvious: Mike Trout, Andrew McCutchen, Jose Bautista, Giancarlo Stanton, Yasiel Puig, Carlos Gomez, Jacoby Ellsbury, Adam Jones, Ryan Braun, Shin-Soo Choo, Justin Upton, Matt Holliday, Hunter Pence, Nelson Cruz, Alex Rios, Michael Brantley, Brandon Moss, Melky Cabrera, Yoenis Cespedes, Allen Craig, Michael Morse, Jayson Werth, Jason Heyward, Josh Hamilton, George Springer, Alex Gordon, Jay Bruce, Martin Prado, Ben Zobrist, Charlie Blackmon, Christian Yelich, Michael Cuddyer

Start: Josh Willingham, Twins
Willingham has been a notoriously streaky player over his career, looking like Rafael Belliard one month and Rafael Palmeiro the next. Even when he appeared to stray from that pattern in 2013, he still hit .311 with 16 home runs in April and July and .237 with 19 home runs the other four months. So now that he's hot, batting .333 (11 for 33) with four homers and an insane .522 on-base percentage in 11 games off the DL, no need to complicate things by bringing matchups into the picture.
Instead of: Desmond Jennings, Adam Eaton, Denard Span

Sit: Oscar Taveras, Cardinals
Taveras homered in his first game as a major-leaguer May 31 but has gone 4 for 19 with one extra-base hit in five games since. You've already waited this long for him to arrive, so in shallower leagues with ample alternatives, you can wait until he gets hot to activate him. With only five games on tap for the Cardinals this week -- and three of them against Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg and Doug Fister -- the odds are against him anyway.
Instead of: Willingham, Nick Markakis, Torii Hunter

Though normally in Fantasy Baseball, you'd start your best players every week regardless of matchups, in those weeks when you do need a fill-in, whether because of injuries or the total collapse of a trusted starter, Scott White is here to help.

At each position, he'll list the players who are "too obvious" for the upcoming week, meaning the ones you wouldn't consider sitting for anyone off the list, and then suggest a start and a sit based on a variety of short-term factors.

Want an edge in your draft? Download the Fantasy Draft Kit App.

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Player News
Andrew Cashner's return set for Saturday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8:39 pm ET) Padres pitcher Andrew Cashner will return to the rotation Saturday, the team announced Wednesday.

Cashner has been out since June 20 due to a shoulder injury, but his rehab has gone well. He'll return to a 2.36 ERA and 59:22 K:BB ratio in 76 1/3 innings.


Garrett Richards leaves Wednesday's game with leg injury
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:04 pm ET) Angels pitcher Garrett Richards left Wednesday's game with a leg injury.

Richards injured himself running to cover first on a ground ball. His leg seemed to buckle before he reached the base, causing him to fall to the ground. A team trainer came out to look at Richards for a while, and determined he would need to be taken off the field on a stretcher. It's unclear how long the injury will keep him out.

Richards had given up two runs on five hits over 1 2/3 innings before leaving the game. 


Salvador Perez scratched with knee soreness
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(8:00 pm ET) Royals catcher Salvador Perez has been scratched due to knee soreness, according to the Kansas City Star.

Perez complained of tightness Monday, but said he would be fine. He was able to start Tuesday's game and was slated to play Wednesday until he was scratched. Resting Perez is considered precautionary at this time. 


Bartolo Colon on track to pitch Sunday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:27 pm ET) Mets pitcher Bartolo Colon will return to the team to make Sunday's scheduled start before returning to the Dominican Republic to attend his mother's funeral, the New York Daily News reports.

Colon missed Monday's start in order to travel to the Dominican Republic to be with his ailing mother. The Mets will have to activate him from the bereavement list before he can make Sunday's start.


Jeurys Familia picks up fourth save Wednesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:23 pm ET) Mets pitcher Jeurys Familia earned his fourth save Wednesday, giving up one hit and one walk while striking out two in 1 2/3 scoreless innings to finish off his team's 8-5 win over the A's.

With closer Jenrry Mejia unavailable due to a back issue, Familia entered with the bases loaded and one out in the eighth inning, walked the first batter he faced then escaped the inning without further damage. He surrendered a two-out double in the bottom of the ninth but was able to strand the runner. Familia owns a 1.97 ERA and 56:28 K:BB ratio in 64 innings.


Jenrry Mejia dealing with back issue
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:20 pm ET) Mets closer Jenrry Mejia was unavailable to pitch Wednesday due to a back issue, the New York Daily News reports.

The Mets won the game 8-5 but let Jeurys Familia record the final five outs of the outing. Mejia revealed earlier in August that he has been pitching through a sports hernia, but it appears Wednesday's issue was unrelated.


Dodgers shuffle rotation to rest Zack Greinke's elbow
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:17 pm ET) The Dodgers announced Wednesday that pitcher Zack Greinke has had his start pushed back from Thursday to Saturday as he deals with a minor elbow issue.

Clayton Kershaw will take the mound Thursday in Greinke's place and pitch on regular rest, while Dan Haren will pitch Friday. Manager Don Mattingly indicated Wednesday that he doesn't expect Greinke's elbow issue to earn him a trip to the disabled list, MLB.com reports.


Rockies confirm Christian Bergman will start Sunday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:12 pm ET) The Rockies confirmed Wednesday that pitcher Christian Bergman will return from the disabled list and start Sunday's game against the Marlins, the Denver Post reports.

Bergman has been on the disabled list for the past two months while recovering from a fractured hand. He has posted a 7.20 ERA in 15 innings over three starts.


C.J. Cron likely to be called up soon
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(7:10 pm ET) Angels designated hitter C.J. Cron is likely to be called up soon, according to the Orange County Register

Cron has performed well in a nine-game stint in the minors, and could be on his way back up with the team facing two lefties during the weekend series. Cron has hit .266/.295/.462 over 199 at-bats this season.


Steven Souza could begin rehab assignment Thursday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:08 pm ET) Nationals outfielder Steven Souza said Wednesday that he could begin a rehab assignment as soon as Thursday, MLB.com reports.

"It's a matter of just how I feel," Souza said. "Kind of build of slowly and see how I feel from there."

Souza suffered a sprained AC joint after crashing into the outfield wall on Aug. 8 and was placed on the disabled list two days later. He went through a full hitting workout Wednesday and will hope to progress to a rehab assignment Thursday or soon after.


 
 
 
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