Daily Notes: Aces Lackey and Peavy on the Hill


Fantasy Game Notes for Sunday: American League

Yankee Stadium (outdoor) 1:05 p.m. ET (40 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 81 degrees)
John Lackey, RHP (7-3, 2.38 ERA, 1.26 WHIP) versus
Mike Mussina, RHP (2-3, 6.52 ERA, 1.45 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: Reggie Willits, OF (hamstring, DTD); Johnny Damon, OF (leg, DTD)

Game Story: Lackey has pitched like a stud so far, but he comes up against a Yankees squad that hits him well. Start all your Yankees and consider sitting Lackey if ratios are an issue for you. He could still get the win, however, as he's squaring off against Mussina, who hasn't fooled anyone this year. The only Angels regular you might consider sitting is Gary Matthews Jr. (2-for-14, 6 K), but this game could be a high-scoring affair. Make sure to start Shea Hillenbrand (15-for-46, 3 HRs against Mussina).

Camden Yards (outdoor) 1:35 p.m. ET (40 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 88 degrees)
Joe Blanton, RHP (4-2, 3.59 ERA, 1.17 WHIP) versus
Daniel Cabrera, RHP (3-5, 4.66 ERA, 1.37 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: Eric Chavez, 3B (elbow, DTD); Travis Buck, OF (elbow, DTD)

Game Story: Blanton pitches well against the current Orioles batters, except for Melvin Mora. If you have other options besides your Orioles, think seriously about starting them. Even though we're looking at another Cabrera start that could yield lots of baserunners (shouldn't his introductory song be "Walk This Way"?), the A's are only middle-of-the-pack against righties. Start the A's with power, but sit the rest, including Marco Scutaro, who likely will be on the bench.

U.S. Cellular Field (outdoor) 2:05 p.m. ET (30 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 68 degrees)
Scott Kazmir, LHP (2-2, 3.81 ERA, 1.44 WHIP) versus
Javier Vazquez, RHP (2-2, 4.21 ERA, 1.11 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: The White Sox are dead last in slugging and average against lefties. A.J. Pierzynski is the only Chicago batter worth starting over somebody obvious. Sit the rest if you have options. Ty Wigginton has had some success against Vazquez (9-for-25, 2 HRs) and Carl Crawford hits Chicago's starter well, but no other Devil Ray has more than five at-bats against him. Considering how cold Tampa's bats have been since their series at Disney's Wide World of Sports --scoring more than four runs only once in seven games, although they did manage 13 on Thursday against Horacio Ramirez and the dregs of the Seattle bullpen -- you may want to look elsewhere for your lineup fillers.


Kauffman Stadium (outdoor) 2:10 p.m. ET (40 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 76 degrees)
Jarrod Washburn, LHP (4-4, 3.15 ERA, 1.17 WHIP) versus
Odalis Perez, LHP (2-4, 5.20 ERA, 1.45 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Looking at the Royals against lefties, your first impression would be to sit them. However, the Royals' individual numbers against Washburn include a lot of crooked numbers (e.g., a collective 1.004 OPS against Washburn). Start all of your Royals, including Mike Sweeney and Esteban German. The Mariners hit lefties well, and most that have seen Perez have good numbers against him. Start all your Mariners except Jose Vidro.

Metrodome (indoor) 2:10 p.m. ET
A.J. Burnett, RHP (5-3, 4.14 ERA, 1.30 WHIP) versus
Carlos Silva, RHP (2-5, 4.47 ERA, 1.49 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Burnett is riding a three-game win streak and saves his best performances for indoors (2.61 ERA in domes the past three seasons). He has held the current Twins to a .231 BAA and a .619 OPS. Time to sit your Twins. The current Blue Jays hitters -- like everyone else -- pound Silva. Play your Blue Jays (especially Matt Stairs), with the possible exceptions of Troy Glaus (0-for-11, 2 K]s) and Aaron Hill (0-for-5).

Ranger Ballpark (outdoor) 3:05 p.m. ET (30 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 79 degrees)
Julian Tavarez, RHP (3-4, 5.27 ERA, 1.45 WHIP) versus
Kameron Loe, RHP (1-4, 6.34 ERA, 1.54 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Texas is bad at making contact against righties, but when they do, they hit them hard. In other words, they hit righties for power, not average. With this being a Texas home game, play your power Rangers and consider sitting Kenny Lofton (0-for-6) unless you absolutely need the steals. Boston loves facing righties. Texas' starter has an ERA over 6.00. The game is being played in Arlington. Let's see if you can finish this sentence: Start all of your _ _ _ _ _ _ (clue: rhymes with "bed fox").

Comerica Park (outdoor) 8:05 p.m. ET (20 percent chance of thunderstorms, low of 56 degrees)
Fausto Carmona, RHP (5-1, 2.77 ERA, 1.19 WHIP) versus
Mike Maroth, LHP (3-1, 4.94 ERA, 1.65 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Last week I said Carmona isn't as good as he's been pitching, but against the Royals, it would be hard to tell. This week he starts against the Tigers, who hit righties harder than any other team in the majors. Let's call Sunday's game, which will be broadcast nationally on your favorite sports network Sunday night, the official end of the sell-high window for Carmona. Start all of your Tigers, with the possible exception of Craig Monroe (0-for-3, 3 K). Cleveland is middle-of-the-pack against lefties, and their individual numbers against Maroth are not great (except Jason Michaels, who you should start), so I'll even say to start Maroth, but more for the win than the ratios.

Fantasy Game Notes for Sunday: National League

Turner Field (outdoor) 1:05 p.m. ET (mostly sunny, high of 86 degrees)
Cole Hamels, LHP (6-2, 3.67 ERA, 1.22 WHIP) versus
Kyle Davies, RHP (2-2, 4.57 ERA, 1.49 WHIP)

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

Game Story: This is the third time Hamels has seen the Braves this year. The first time he got a no-decision when he should have won. The next time he won when he should have lost. The third time ... let's say you should start your bigger name Braves, and add to the list Matt Diaz (3-for-11). As for Davies, in a one-week span he lost to the Nationals and beat the Mets. There's no telling which Davies shows up against the Phillies. Well, maybe there's some telling. The Phillies batters that have faced him have a 1.371 OPS against him. Start all your Phillies.

Dolphin Stadium (outdoor) 1:05 p.m. ET (20 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 85 degrees)
Jorge Sosa, RHP (3-1, 3.75 ERA, 1.08 WHIP) versus
Scott Olsen, LHP (4-3, 4.76 ERA, 1.59 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: Shawn Green, OF (foot, DTD)

Game Story: Last week I said the Braves game would be a good test to see if Sosa is legit or not. He flunked. While I wouldn't write him off because of the loss, realize expectations should be tempered as teams will follow the Braves' lead and not watch sliders go by for strikes. The Marlins are third behind the Phillies and Mets in runs scored in the NL, and shouldn't be taken lightly. Start your Marlins against Sosa. As for Olsen, the Mets love lefties (.500 SLG), and should all be started against him.

Great American Ball Park (outdoor) 1:15 p.m. ET (30 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 83 degrees)
Zach Duke, LHP (1-5, 5.56 ERA, 1.69 WHIP) versus
Kirk Saarloos, RHP (0-3, 5.09 ERA, 1.39 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: Ryan Doumit, C/OF (head, DTD)

Game Story: Last week I recommended Duke and he got shellacked. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. If it helps, I had to absorb the loss as well. I still maintain he's pitched better than his record, but I won't be jumping on that bandwagon any time soon. So having said that, I'd start your Reds, with the possible exceptions of David Ross, Javier Valentin and Edwin Encarnacion. The Pirates are not an offensive juggernaut, and in their limited at-bats have not gotten many hits off of Saarloos. However, a soft-tosser at Great American Ball Park is a recipe for runs galore. Start at least your big-name Pirates, except Adam LaRoche and Ronny Paulino.

Busch Stadium (outdoor) 1:15 p.m. ET (50 percent chance of thunderstorms, high of 81 degrees)
Matt Chico, LHP (3-4, 5.54 ERA, 1.67 WHIP) versus
Adam Wainwright, RHP (4-3, 6.02 ERA, 1.91 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: The Cardinals do not hit lefties for power and are average at best hitting them for, well, average. Chico's problems have been walks and home runs. Take homers out of the equation, and he might have a good game. Sit your Cardinals except for Albert Pujols (duh), David Eckstein, Yadier Molina, and Scott Spiezio. When you look at Wainwright's splits, none of them look pretty. However, he is slightly better at home and is pitching against a Nationals team that can't hit righties. I won't go as far as to say start Wainwright (but don't be afraid to), but look for improvement and sit your Nationals.

Petco Park (outdoor) 4:05 p.m. ET (mostly cloudy, high of 70 degrees)
Jeff Suppan, RHP (6-4, 3.49 ERA, 1.30 WHIP) versus
Jake Peavy, RHP (6-1, 1.63 ERA, .98 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: Brian Giles, OF (knee, DTD/DL); Trevor Hoffman, RP (arm, DTD)

Game Story: Suppan has pitched well against most of the current Padres, with one notable exception: Geoff Blum (9-for-16). Start the big-name Padres and Blum. While Peavy has been dominating this season, his numbers against the current Brewers are not as good as you would think. Heck, even Suppan has a hit off of him. Also, Peavy has pitched better on the road than at home this year, so take a chance and start your Brewers except for Johnny Estrada (0-for-8). If you're feeling "lottery ticket" lucky, start Suppan as well.

AT&T Park (outdoor) 10:15 p.m. ET (patchy fog, high of 67 degrees)
Josh Fogg, RHP (1-5, 4.53 ERA, 1.55 WHIP) versus
Noah Lowry, LHP (5-4, 2.69 ERA, 1.34 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Fogg's ERA on the road is more than 1.5 earned runs lower than at home, however, it's still pushing 4.00. The bigger name Giants have batted well against him and should be started, as should Rich Aurilia (5-for-14). In his last three starts Lowry has lasted into the seventh inning and given up two earned runs or less. However, he also gave up 11 walks in that stretch. The trick has been keeping the ball in the park. The Rockies have hit Lowry well, this is the third time they've seen him this year, and in general he has been worse in day games the past three years. Start the big-name Rockies.

Dodger Stadium (outdoor) 4:10 p.m. ET (patchy fog, high of 70 degrees)
Rich Hill, LHP (4-4, 3.38 ERA, 1.09 WHIP) versus
Randy Wolf, LHP (6-3, 3.75 ERA, 1.23 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: none

Game Story: Hill is riding a very rough three-game road streak where he's given up 14 earned runs and seven home runs. Pitching at Dodger Stadium should help the latter problem, but the Dodgers hit lefties for average and have a .352 OBP against southpaws. Don't look for Rich's streak of pain to end on Sunday. Start your Dodgers except Wilson Betemit. The Cubs are decent hitting lefties for power, but are awful hitting them for average. Play only the big three -- Aramis Ramirez, Derrek Lee and Alfonso Soriano -- plus the little one (Angel Pagan).

Chase Field (indoor/retractable roof) 4:40 p.m. ET
Roy Oswalt, RHP (6-3, 3.04 ERA, 1.19 WHIP) versus
Livan Hernandez, RHP (4-2, 3.66 ERA, 1.50 WHIP)

Notable Injuries: Chris Young, OF (groin, DTD)

Game Story: Oswalt has a love-hate relationship with the Diamondbacks; he loves them, they hate him. Sit your Diamondbacks with the possible exceptions of Chris B. Young, Stephen Drew, Chris Snyder, and the totally-on-fire Mark Reynolds. In four of Hernandez's last five games he has given up one earned run per game. The one I left out was eight earned runs against the Astros. Sit Hernandez and start all of your Astros, especially Mike Lamb (8-for-17, 1 HR).

Waiver Wire Pick Ups

Shea Hillenbrand, 1B, LAA @ New York Yankees
Mike Sweeney, DH, KC versus Seattle Mariners
Esteban German, IF, KC versus Seattle Mariners
Matt Stairs, 1B/OF, TOR @ Minnesota Twins
Jason Michaels, OF, CLE @ Detroit Tigers
Mike Maroth, SP, DET versus Cleveland Indians
Matt Diaz, OF, ATL versus Philadelphia Phillies
Geoff Blum, 3B, SD versus Milwaukee Brewers
Rich Aurilia, 1B, SF versus Colorado Rockies
Mike Lamb, 3B, HOU @ Arizona Diamondbacks

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