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Start and sit hitters for Week 12

Senior Fantasy Writer
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All stats are updated through Thursday, June 12.

The most notable player on the verge of coming off the DL is Shane Victorino (hamstring), who probably won't play the whole week and may not be so productive right out of the gate, but several notable players head into the weekend nursing day-to-day injuries.

Scott's sleepers for Week 12
Player Own/Start %
1. Josh Willingham, OF, MIN 75/67
2. Gregory Polanco, OF, PIT 94/69
3. Aramis Ramirez, 3B, MIL 80/53
4. Howie Kendrick, 2B, LAA 91/68
5. Eric Hosmer, 1B, KC 93/64
6. Billy Hamilton, OF, CIN 86/66
7. Coco Crisp, OF, OAK 81/61
8. Matt Adams, 1B, STL 85/16
9. Erick Aybar, SS, LAA 80/66
10. Desmond Jennings, OF, TB 90/66

The most concerning is probably Hanley Ramirez. He got a cortisone shot in his right shoulder Wednesday, hoping to relieve the soreness. We'll know by the end of the weekend whether it worked or not, and you'll want to start him if it did. Brian Dozier's (back), Jose Altuve's (hand) and Jacoby Ellsbury's (hip) injuries don't appear as serious, making them still "too obvious" at their respective positions, but you'll want to keep an eye on them over the weekend.

Wonder where Kole Calhoun has been since returning from a sprained ankle? The Angels have taken to sitting him in favor of Collin Cowgill against left-handers and have faced four lefties in their last five games. Granted, platoons can come and go on a whim, as we've seen recently with Lonnie Chisenhall and, on the other end of the spectrum, Charlie Blackmon, but Calhoun, for all his sleeper appeal coming into the year, isn't productive enough to factor in mixed leagues in his current capacity.

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

Catcher

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

Start: Russell Martin, Pirates
Since returning from a DL stint for a strained hamstring May 23, Martin has been the fourth-highest scoring catcher in Head-to-Head points leagues. And while his .327 (16 for 49) batting average during that stretch is too good to be true, he managed to finish 13th in Head-to-Head scoring despite a .226 batting average last year. He tends to run hot and cold and is certainly hot now, so give him a look if you have a gaping hole at catcher.
Instead of: Mike Zunino, John Jaso, Dioner Navarro

Sit: Carlos Ruiz, Phillies
Speaking of running hot and cold, Ruiz has been on a roller-coaster ride of his own this season, rebounding from a mostly crummy May to hit .333 (15 for 45) with a home run and an .867 OPS in his last 12 games. But the Philies have especially tough matchups against the Braves and Cardinals starting rotations this week -- facing pitchers like Julio Teheran, Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha -- and play all seven of their games on the road, where Ruiz is batting .253 compared to .300 at home.
Instead of: Martin, Jason Castro, Kurt Suzuki

First base

Too obvious: Miguel Cabrera, Paul Goldschmidt, Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Abreu, Albert Pujols, Anthony Rizzo, Freddie Freeman, Chris Davis, Victor Martinez, Brandon Moss, Joey Votto, Todd Frazier, Jonathan Lucroy, Adrian Gonzalez, Allen Craig, Michael Morse, Adam LaRoche

Start: Matt Adams, Cardinals
After spending two weeks on the DL with a strained calf, Adams returned to the lineup Friday looking to get back to doing everything his pedigree and peripherals say he shouldn't be doing -- i.e., trading off all of his home run power for more singles than he has any right to hit with such poor plate discipline. OK, so maybe that's not his aim, and maybe the time off will allow him to hit the reset button on his swing and get back to driving the ball like we all know he can. He certainly has the right matchups for it this week, facing hittable righties like Jacob deGrom, Bartolo Colon, David Buchanan, A.J. Burnett and Kyle Kendrick.
Instead of: Mark Teixeira, Jon Singleton

Sit: Justin Morneau, Rockies
Morneau came to life in his recent series against the Braves, even homering Thursday, but has mostly been a disaster since mid-May, batting .216 (16 for 74) over his last 21 games. He kicks off this week against Hyun-Jin Ryu, Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw, which could put him back in a funk right away, particularly if he sits against one or both of the lefties. And his matchups to end the week against the Brewers starting rotation aren't the best either.
Instead of: Eric Hosmer, Mike Napoli, Adams

Second base

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

Five Best Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Brewers @ARI4, @COL3
2. Angels @CLE4, TEX3
3. Rays BAL3, HOU4
4. Cardinals NYM3, PHI4
5. Cubs @MIA3, PIT3

Start: Howie Kendrick, Angels
Kendrick isn't far removed from being "too obvious" at the position, but a 13-for-71 (.183) slump has his starting rate down to 68 percent. He has the kind of matchups this week, though, that should get him back on track, particularly in the second series against Rangers. None of Joe Saunders, Nick Martinez and Colby Lewis deserves to be starting every fifth day in the majors. Combined, they've allowed 12.1 hits per nine innings this season.
Instead of: Brett Lawrie, Yangervis Solarte

Sit: Aaron Hill, Diamondbacks
Hill isn't far removed from being "too obvious" at the position either, but more because of reputation than actual production. He hasn't done much of anything for Fantasy owners this season, scoring 15-plus Head-to-Head points in just three of the first 10 weeks, and isn't trending the right direction with a .205 (8 for 39) batting average so far in June. He's also batting just .228 against righties, who the Diamondbacks face in six of their seven games this week.
Instead of: Kendrick, Ben Zobrist, Solarte

Third base

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

Start: Aramis Ramirez, Brewers
Ramirez was slumping just before hitting the DL with a strained hamstring May 10, costing him "too obvious" status at the position, but that slump appears to be behind him now. He's batting .300 (9 for 30) with two home runs in eight games since returning from the DL. The Brewers have far and away the best matchups of any team this week, facing the Diamondbacks' lousy starting rotation for four games at hitter-friendly Chase Field and the Rockies' slightly better than lousy rotation for three games at hitter-crazy Coors Field. Ramirez figures to be just one of the beneficiaries.
Instead of: Brett Lawrie, Yangervis Solarte, Casey McGehee

Sit: Pablo Sandoval, Giants
Sandoval had a great run the second half of May, briefly becoming "too obvious" at the position, but he's cooled off a bit in June, batting .289 (11 for 38) with just two extra-base hits (both doubles) in 11 games. That alone wouldn't be reason enough to sit him, but the Giants are also the only team playing just five games with week, including three against left-handed pitchers. Sandoval is batting just .169 against lefties.
Instead of: Ramirez, Manny Machado

Shortstop

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

Five Worst Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Rockies @LAD3, MIL3
2. Blue Jays @NYY3, @CIN3
3. Braves PHI3, @WAS4
4. Indians LAA4, DET3
5. Royals @DET4, SEA3

Start: Erick Aybar, Angels
Aybar is currently tied with Ian Desmond for sixth at the position in Head-to-Head points leagues, which is clearly too good to be true. But it gives you some idea just how hot he's been lately, batting .333 (27 for 81) with seven doubles, two homers and two steals in his last 21 games. His batting average is bound to regress and his RBI pace to slow down, but perhaps not this week against the Indians and Rangers rotations.
Instead of: Jimmy Rollins, Yangervis Solarte, Alcides Escobar

Sit: Andrelton Simmons, Braves
Looks like Simmons is having a good week for once, doesn't it? That's what hitting a grand slam can do for a player. Overall, though, he went only 2 for 15 in the Braves' four-game series at Colorado, flopping in his best chance yet to snap out of his season-long slump. It won't get any easier this week against pitchers like Cole Hamels, Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg, Doug Fister and Tanner Roark.
Instead of: Aybar, Jhonny Peralta, Asdrubal Cabrera

Outfield

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

Start: Josh Willingham, Twins
Willingham claims this spot for the second straight week. He doesn't have quite as much momentum as he had then, but particuarly because of his high walk rate, he's still contributing starter-caliber numbers in Fantasy. And the Twins' matchups this week are a little more in his favor. He's the type of hitter who could take advantage of the Green Monster in three games at Boston, and his matchups against the White Sox to close out the week are far from imposing. In four games, he'll face Jose Quintana, Hector Noesi, Andre Rienzo and John Danks.
Instead of: Nick Markakis, Angel Pagan, Brett Gardner

Sit: Corey Dickerson, Rockies
Starting Dickerson may seem to be obvious given the kind of run he's on as a fill-in for the injured Carlos Gonzalez (or Michael Cuddyer, depending on how you look at it), but the Rockies' series at Dodger Stadium to begin the week could put him in a hole before the team returns to Coors Field for a three-game series against the Brewers. Not only are the matchups against Hyun-Jin Ryu, Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw unfavorable, but two of those pitchers throw left-handed, making Dickerson a good bet to sit against one or both. Sitting him in a five-outfielder league may be harder to justify, but in a three-outfielder league, you can do better.
Instead of: Willingham, Billy Hamilton, Coco Crisp

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.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Scott at @CBSScottWhite .

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Player News
Shane Victorino: 'I should be the starting right fielder' for Red Sox
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:33 am ET) Red Sox outfielder Shane Victorino believes he should be the team's starting right fielder in 2015 amidst a crowded group of contenders, WEEI.com reports.

"If you think there’s somebody better in right, be my guest," Victorino said. "Obviously health will dictate that. But if I’m healthy if there’s a better outfielder in right field then show me and go out there and do it. I’m not saying that in a cocky or arrogant way. It’s just how confident I am to know I should be the starting right fielder. There are things to come into play and situations to be discussed.

"I plan on being healthy and out there and ready to go. Like I said, it’s my job. I don’t think there’s anybody can tell me differently. If they feel there is from an organization’s standpoint it is what it is. As I’ve said, whatever uniform it may be I’m going to go out there and give 100 percent and be the best I can be. Obviously I want it to be a Red Sox uniform and be a right fielder, but I can’t control decisions that are made from up top."

Victorino will swing a bat Monday for the first time since undergoing back surgery. "Everything feels great," he said. "There hasn't been any setbacks."


Report: Tigers, White Sox show interest in Justin Masterson
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(11/27/2014) The Tigers and White Sox have joined the Royals, Twins and Cubs as teams to show interest in free-agent pitcher Justin Masterson, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.

Masterson's agent is scheduled to meet with teams over Thanksgiving weekend. The pitcher struggled in 2014, going 7-9 with a 5.88 ERA in 25 starts.


Reds sign Brennan Boesch to minor league deal
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) The Reds have signed outfielder Brennan Boesch to a minor league contract with an invite to spring training. Boesch, 29, is a career .256/.309/.412 hitter over five seasons for the Tigers, Yankees and Angels.

He was in the minors for most of last season, hitting .332 with 25 homers for the Angels Triple-A affiliate. 


Royals acquire infielder Ryan Jackson from Dodgers
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) The Royals have acquired infielder Ryan Jackson from the Dodgers for cash considerations. Jackson was out for most of last season with a wrist injury. 

Jackson hit .278 with 34 RBI at Triple-A Memphis, playing 122 games at shortstop and third base in 2013.


Report: Talks break down between Yanks, Phils about Rollins deal
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) The Yankees and Phillies reportedly discussed a deal for 35-year-old shortstop Jimmy Rollins before talks broke down, according to ESPN reporter Jayson Stark.

Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Rollins is "one of the best shortstops in baseball still" but wouldn't confirm Yankees interest in the veteran. Amaro also said Rollins is "somebody we want on our club and would be very hard to replace."

Rollins is due $11 million this season and his contract is up at the end of 2015. Rollins hit .243 with 55 RBI and stole 28 bases in 2014. 


Padres' Blaine Boyer clears waivers, heads for free agency
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) Padres right-handed pitcher Blaine Boyer cleared waivers Wednesday and will enter free agency, according to U-T San Diego. Boyer was designated for assignment last week.

Boyer appeared in 32 games last season for the Padres and posted a 3.57 ERA. 


Rays designate Sean Rodriguez for assignment
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) The Rays have designated 29-year-old Sean Rodriguez for assignment. 

Rodriguez hit .211 with 12 home runs last season. 


Jose Molina, Cole Figueroa clear waivers, released by Rays
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) Catcher Jose Molina and infielder Cole Figueroa cleared waivers and were released by the Rays Wednesday. 

Both Molina and Figueroa were designated for assignment Thursday. Molina, 39, hit .178 over 225 at-bats last year, while Figueroa hit .233 in 43 at-bats. 


Rays sign right-hander Ernesto Frieri to major-league contract
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) The Rays have announced signing of right-hand pitcher Ernesto Frieri to a one-year contract. Frieri will make a base salary of $800,000, going up to $3.15 million with incentives, according to the Tampa Tribune.

Frieri, who had a career-high 37 saves in 2013, had 11 last season with a 7.34 ERA.


Yankees' Sabathia confident he can return to being 200-inning pitcher
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia continues to deliver positive updates coming off July knee surgery.

"The knee, I have no complaints," Sabathia told YES Network. "I’m able to do all of my workouts. … I’m changing a few things. Not as much pounding and running. I’m in the pool a lot, on different machines to get cardio, (on the) bike. Just adding a few different things to get some cardio in."

Despite coming off surgery and being limited to eight starts (46 innings) in 2014, Sabathia feels he can get back to being a 30-start, 200-inning pitcher in 2015.

"Yeah, for sure," he said. "I feel like I can. If you asked me that a couple of months ago, I would have said, ‘I don’t know,’ but the way I’m feeling now and being able to work out, definitely."


 
 
 
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