Daily Notes: Wainwright a good start


Fantasy Game Notes for Tuesday: American League

Fenway Park (outdoor) 7:05 p.m. ET (breezy, low of 65 degrees)
Justin Verlander, RHP (3-1) versus Tim Wakefield, RHP (4-3)

Notable Injuries: Manny Ramirez, OF (hamstring, DTD)

Game Story: Make no mistake, Verlander is getting hit this year, with an ERA that is lower than his WHIP should allow. Yes, he's 3-1, but four of his seven starts have been against the Royals and Mariners. The Red Sox are no Royals (or Mariners). Start all your Sox (especially Coco Crisp) and sit Verlander. As for Wakefield, eight of the current Tigers have hit at least one home run off of him. With all knucklers, the issue is how it's knuckling that day. Start all your Tigers (especially Magglio Ordonez) and expect either Wakefield or Hideki Okajima to get the win. Wakefield on the mound means Doug Mirabelli behind the plate, so sit Jason Varitek.

Jacobs Field (outdoor) 7:05 p.m. ET (70 percent chance of thunderstorms, low of 56 degrees)
Ramon Ortiz, RHP (3-3) versus Paul Byrd, LHP (2-1)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: The thunderstorms likely won't hit until after the game is over, so expect the Indians to get this one in. The story about Ortiz is control. In his first three games he was 3-0, with a 4.0 K/BB. In his next four starts he was 0-3, with a 1.7 K/BB. Start your Indians because of the trend, but make sure to sit Trot Nixon (2-for-24 lifetime against Ortiz). As for Byrd, he has pitched well considering his talent level, and the current Indians appear to hit either .400, or less than .200 off of him. Start Luis Castillo (11-for-24) and Jason Tyner (5-for-12), but sit Torii Hunter (6-for-35), Michael Cuddyer (2-for-14) and Jason Bartlett (0-for-11).

Rogers Centre (indoor/retractable roof) 7:07 p.m. ET
Daniel Cabrera, RHP (3-3) versus Ty Taubenheim, RHP (0-0)

Notable Injuries: Troy Glaus, 3B (foot, DTD)

Game Story: At the beginning of the season I said not to buy anything Cabrera was selling. Sure, he'll be unhittable some days, but overall he'll have high ratios and won't be worth the good starts. However, against the current Blue Jays he does well, except for Matt Stairs (5-for-16) and Royce Clayton (3-for-6). You may want to sit Vernon Wells (1-for-19), Aaron Hill (2-for-13) and Lyle Overbay (2-for-12). Taubenheim was unimpressive at Triple-A Syracuse this season, and is being pressed into service because of injuries. Start all your Orioles.

Tropicana Field (indoor) 7:10 p.m. ET
Brandon McCarthy, RHP (3-4) versus James Shields, RHP (3-0)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: The good news is McCarthy owns Carl Crawford (0-for-8). The bad news is all the other Devil Rays hit him well. Consider starting Ty Wigginton (2-for-5, 1 HR) and expect lots of Devil Ray offense (hmmm, how many times do I get to type that in a year?). Shields got an undeserved victory against the Rangers in Arlington, where he gave up three home runs. Shields will pitch better against Texas at home, so only start the big name Rangers.

U. S. Cellular Field (outdoor) 8:11 p.m. ET (partly cloudy, low of 47 degrees)
Mike Mussina, RHP (2-1) versus John Danks, LHP (1-4)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Overall Mussina should pitch well against the White Sox, but there are a few hitters you should make sure to start: the eternally-slumping Jermaine Dye (19-for-47, 2 HRs) and A.J. Pierzynski (11-for-27). Think seriously about sitting Joe Crede (4-for 24). Danks pitched very well against the Twins last time out, but there's no telling if he's turned the corner. The Yankees are mediocre hitting lefties for average, and downright bad hitting them for power. Danks has a chance, but sit only the lesser Yankees.

McAfee Stadium (outdoor) 10:05 p.m. ET (patchy fog, low of 52 degrees)
Brian Bannister, RHP (0-2) versus Joe Kennedy, LHP (1-2)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: In his last start Bannister threw 100 pitches ... in 4 2/3 innings. Things are not looking good for the righty, and you should start all of your Athletics. Meanwhile, The Patriarch (Kennedy) has pitched quite well. The only Royal you should be sure to start is Mark Grudzielanek (5-for-14). Also, pick up Kennedy for the spot start if you can.

Safeco Field (outdoor/retractable roof) 10:05 p.m. ET (increasing clouds, low of 48 degrees)
Kelvim Escobar, RHP (4-1) versus Felix Hernandez, RHP (2-1)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Escobar has gotten off to a nice start, but the 31-year-old has never had an ERA this good (2.21). Looking at this year's Mariners, more than a couple bat well against him (especially Raul Ibanez, Jose Vidro and Ben Broussard) and this game has the makings of a market correction for Escobar. Hernandez is coming off the disabled list to make this start, and will be on a pitch count. He'll have to make do with about 70 pitches, so don't expect too much in the way of strikeouts or a win, even if the Mariners take this game.

Fantasy Game Notes for Tuesday: National League

RFK Stadium (outdoor) 7:05 p.m. ET (mostly clear, low of 65 degrees)
Tim Hudson, RHP (4-1) versus Levale Speigner, RHP (1-0)

Notable Injuries: Chipper Jones, 3B (thumb, DTD)

Game Story: Washington's numbers against Hudson are awful, with the possible exception of Austin Kearns (4-for-11, 1 HR), but you should likely sit every National you have. With Shawn Hill going to the DL with elbow issues, Speigner is being called upon to start. His 1.81 WHIP tells you all you need to know. Start all of your Braves.

Citizens Bank Park (outdoor) 7:05 p.m. ET (partly cloudy, low of 64 degrees)
Claudio Vargas, RHP (3-0) versus Adam Eaton, RHP (3-3)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: While I believe Mike Maddux is in the top four or five of all MLB pitching coaches, I don't believe in Vargas' 2.65 ERA. Vargas has a 22/9 AO/GO split in his last two games, and that won't help him in the Philly ballpark. Expect the Phillies to tee off on him. You already know how I feel about Eaton pitching in Philly. And if you don't, does the phrase, "Start all of your Brewers except Damian Miller," answer that question? This game should create some nice offense from both dugouts.

PNC Park (outdoor) 7:05 p.m. ET (60 percent chance of thunderstorms, low of 58 degrees)
Sergio Mitre, RHP (0-2) versus Paul Maholm, LHP (2-4)

Notable Injuries: Mike Jacobs, 1B (thumb, DTD); Jose Bautista, 3B (ankle, DTD)

Game Story: The same weather threatening Cleveland looms for Pittsburgh, but again, they should be able to play this one before the rain starts. Mitre has only had one bad outing, but still hasn't gotten a win. However, Pittsburgh is awful against righties, so he likely gets the win on Tuesday (unless they pull out that crazy scheme against where the first four batters all bunt). Sit your Pirates and pick up Mitre for a spot start. I have little faith in Maholm and the Marlins eat lefties for breakfast. The only thing that could keep them from scoring lots of runs is their rash of injuries. Start all of your Marlins.

Shea Stadium (outdoor) 7:10 p.m. ET (mostly clear, low of 63 degrees)
Carlos Zambrano, RHP (3-3) versus John Maine, RHP (5-0)

Notable Injuries: Derrek Lee, 1B (neck, DTD); Moises Alou, OF (quadriceps, DTD)

Game Story: Zambrano is not fragile, but is pitching like he's broken. I wrote a column saying there was an issue with his control that was bigger than his bad April. He's not proving me wrong. Play all of your Mets, especially Endy Chavez (5-for-14, 1 HR) who likely fills in for Alou. Some feel Maine is pitching over his head (figuratively, not literally like Jeff Weaver does), and yes, that sub-2.00 ERA will come up, but expect him to keep the Cubs quiet, especially if Derrek Lee is out.

Minute Maid Field (indoor/retractable roof) 8:05 p.m. ET
Matt Morris, RHP (4-1) versus Woody Williams, RHP (1-5)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: While Morris has been pitching better this year -- he has realized his fastball isn't what it was and has relied on off-speed pitches -- he has been lucky that his ERA isn't worse. The current Astros hit him well, so expect his luck to run out. Start all of your Astros not named Morgan Ensberg. Conversely, Williams' ERA is right where it should be and likely won't decrease this week. Start all your Giants not named Pedro Feliz.

Coors Field (outdoor) 8:35 p.m. ET (10 percent chance of showers, low of 45 degrees)
Randy Johnson, LHP (2-1) versus Jason Hirsh, RHP (2-3)

Notable Injuries: Chad Tracy, 3B (ribs, DTD)

Game Story: The window of opportunity for the NL to prey upon an unready Randy Johnson closed last week in Philly. As long as he can keep the ball in the ballpark (not a given at Coors Field), he should notch a win. It's hard to sit Rockies batters when they're at home, but you should bench the lesser names. Hirsh has a lower ERA at home than away, and the Diamondbacks are so-so against righties, but here's a disturbing sequence of numbers: 4-5-6. That's Hirsh's walks in his last three games, respectively. Sit Hirsh and start your Diamondbacks.

Petco Park (outdoor) 10:05 p.m. ET (patchy fog, low of 59 degrees)
Aaron Harang, RHP (5-1) versus David Wells, LHP (1-2)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: It's odd when a pitcher's ERA is this close to his number of wins (5 wins, 5.04 ERA). In fact, in five of Harang's eight starts he has given up five earned runs. I'm sensing a penta-fixation here. While he's not walking more batters, he is giving up lots of hits. No current Padre has a great record against him, although Russ Branyan has two hits in eight at-bats, and both are homers. Expect a better ERA out of Harang this time. Cincinnati is right in middle in hitting for average and power against lefties, but there are two batters you should make sure to start: Ken Griffey Jr., (22-for-75, 8 HRs) and Scott Hatteberg (4-for-13).

Dodger Stadium (outdoor) 10:10 p.m. ET (patchy fog, low of 56 degrees)
Adam Wainwright, RHP (3-2) versus Derek Lowe, RHP (3-4)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: I have faith in Dave Duncan and believe in Wainwright's trend more than in his overall numbers. I say Good Adam pitches in this game, and you should only start the biggest name Dodgers such as Nomar Garciaparra (16 letters) and Jeff Kent (okay, so that's only half as long). To practice what I preach, I'm sitting the hot Oliver Perez against the Yankees later this week in favor of Wainwright (in a weekly transactions league, of course). The Cardinals are not afraid of Lowe, so make sure to start the Wonder Twins Adam Kennedy and David Eckstein (plus Chris Duncan), and think seriously about sitting Juan Encarnacion and Jim Edmonds.

Waiver Wire Pick Ups

Coco Crisp, OF, BOS versus Detroit Tigers
Matt Stairs, OF, TOR versus Baltimore Orioles
Ty Wigginton, IF, TB versus Texas Rangers
Jermaine Dye, OF, CWS versus New York Yankees
Joe Kennedy, SP, OAK versus Kansas City Royals
Raul Ibanez, OF, SEA versus Los Angeles Angels
Cha Seung Baek, SP, SEA versus Los Angeles Angels
Sergio Mitre, SP, FLA @ Pittsburgh Pirates
Endy Chavez, OF, NYM versus Chicago Cubs
Scott Hatteberg, OF, CIN @ San Diego Padres
Adam Kennedy, 2B, STL @ Los Angeles Dodgers
David Eckstein, SS, STL @ Los Angeles Dodgers

Please Note that the notable injuries are not meant to be a comprehensive report of each team's disabled list. For brevity, we include only day-to-day injuries or new DL additions for players you might otherwise consider using in these games. Long-term DL or day-to-day injuries to starting pitchers who were not scheduled to appear are omitted.

David Young is a fantasy baseball analyst for ESPN.com and TalentedMrRoto.com. He can be reached at MrSnappy@TalentedMrRoto.com