Commentary

Fantasy Forecaseter: Joba Chamberlain a two-start option

Updated: May 31, 2008, 4:40 PM ET
By Tristan H. Cockcroft | ESPN.com

On tap: What a Tuesday it'll be in New York, as Joba Chamberlain makes his first-ever start for the Yankees, while Pedro Martinez makes his first start in two months after recovering from a hamstring injury. They'll both be two-start pitchers, as will Justin Masterson, the Red Sox rookie who pitched so masterfully in his first two spot-start appearances this season. And if that's not enough, John Smoltz will probably be back on Monday, ready to close for the Braves for the first time since 2004.

Quick click by section: Game breakdowns | Hitters' matchups | Base stealers' matchups | Pitchers' matchups | Two-start pitchers

Note: Weather reports are based on upcoming weather forecasts (through Friday), as well as historical trends in those cities. "Poor weather" doesn't guarantee rainouts; those are merely the teams with the highest probability of one or more.

Seven games
Braves (FLA-4, PHI-3)Padres (CHC-3, NYM-4)
Cardinals (PIT-1, @WAS-3, @HOU-3)Phillies (CIN-4, @ATL-3)
Cubs (@SD-3, @LAD-4)Pirates (@STL-1, HOU-3, ARI-3)
Dodgers (COL-3, CHC-4)Rangers (CLE-4, TB-3)
Indians (@TEX-4, @DET-3)Red Sox (@BAL-1, TB-3, SEA-3)
Marlins (@ATL-4, CIN-3)Reds (@PHI-4, @FLA-3)
Mets (@SF-3, @SD-4)Twins (NYY-1, BAL-3, @CHW-3)
Orioles (BOS-1, @MIN-3, @TOR-3)Yankees (@MIN-1, TOR-3, KC-3)
Six games, all homeSix games, all road
White Sox (KC-3, MIN-3)Royals (@CHW-3, @NYY-3)
Athletics (DET-3, LAA-3)Angels (@SEA-3, @OAK-3)
Nationals (STL-3, SF-3)Rays (@BOS-3, @TEX-3)
Diamondbacks (@MIL-3, @PIT-3)
Good weather (* -- weatherproof)Riskier weather
Angels (@SEA-3, @OAK-3)Phillies (CIN-4, @ATL-3)
Athletics (DET-3, LAA-3)Rays (@BOS-3, @TEX-3)
Cardinals (PIT-1, @WAS-3, @HOU-3)Red Sox (@BAL-1, TB-3, SEA-3)
Cubs (@SD-3, @LAD-4)Royals (@CHW-3, @NYY-3)
Dodgers (COL-3, CHC-4)Yankees (@MIN-1, TOR-3, KC-3)
Mets (@SF-3, @SD-4)
Nationals (STL-3, SF-3)
Orioles (BOS-1, @MIN-3, @TOR-3)
Padres (CHC-3, NYM-4)

Note: Hitter-friendly ballparks are based primarily on recent statistical data (2005-08) comparing home/road performance, much the same method as our Park Factor page. Some personal opinion does go into making ballpark selections.

Good for hittersPoor for hitters
Brewers (ARI-3, @COL-3) Dodgers (COL-3, CHC-4)
Diamondbacks (@MIL-3, @PIT-3) Orioles (BOS-1, @MIN-3, @TOR-3)
Indians (@TEX-4, @DET-3) Pirates (@STL-1, HOU-3, ARI-3)
White Sox (KC-3, MIN-3) Tigers (@OAK-3, CLE-3)
Games at hitter-friendly ballparks
Chase Field (ARI): No games
Citizens Bank Park (PHI): Reds, June 2-5
Coors Field (COL): Brewers, June 6-8
Great American Ball Park (CIN): No games
Rangers Ballpark (TEX): Indians, June 2-5; Rays, June 6-8
U.S. Cellular Field (CHW): Royals, June 3-5; Twins, June 6-8
Wrigley Field (CHC): No games
Lefty-heavyRighty-heavy
Angels (3 LHP, 3 RHP)Dodgers (6 RHP, 1 LHP)
Astros (3 LHP, 3 RHP)Indians (6 RHP, 1 LHP)
Braves (3 LHP, 4 RHP)Orioles (6 RHP, 1 LHP)
Brewers (3 LHP, 3 RHP)Phillies (6 RHP, 1 LHP)
Cardinals (4 LHP, 3 RHP)Red Sox (6 RHP, 1 LHP)
Diamondbacks (3 LHP, 3 RHP)White Sox (6 RHP, 0 LHP)
Mets (5 LHP, 2 RHP)Yankees (7 RHP, 0 LHP)
Padres (3 LHP, 4 RHP)
Rangers (4 LHP, 3 RHP)
Reds (3 LHP, 4 RHP)
Twins (3 LHP, 4 RHP)

Hitter value plays
Hitter (Team)ScheduleMay stats
Melky Cabrera (NYY)(@MIN-1, TOR-3, KC-3)24 G, .209 AVG, 1 HR, .555 OPS
Career versus KC: 19 G, .307 AVG, 16 RBIs, .877 OPS ... 2008 versus RHP: .300 AVG, .810 OPS
Edwin Encarnacion (CIN)(@PHI-4, @FLA-3)23 G, .167 AVG, 1 HR, .478 OPS
Career at Citizens Bank Park: 6 G, .304 AVG, 1.255 OPS ... 2008 versus LHP: .291 AVG, .799 OPS
Ryan Freel (CIN)(@PHI-4, @FLA-3)21 G, .300 AVG, .727 OPS
2008 road: 22 G, .382 AVG, .882 OPS ... 2008 versus LHP: .339 AVG, .824 OPS
Jason Giambi (NYY)(@MIN-1, TOR-3, KC-3)20 G, .339 AVG, 6 HR, 1.207 OPS
2005-08 home: .267 AVG, .959 OPS ... 2005-08 versus RHP: .261 AVG, .964 OPS
Kelly Johnson (ATL)(FLA-4, PHI-3)23 G, .349 AVG, 2 HR, .963 OPS
Career versus FLA: 31 G, .308 AVG, .891 OPS ... 2008 home: 24 G, .333 AVG, 14 RBIs, .924 OPS
Jason Kendall (MIL)(ARI-3, @COL-3)24 G, .222 AVG, .612 OPS
Career at Coors Field: 32 G, .395 AVG, .996 OPS ... 2008 versus LHP: .308 AVG, .762 OPS
Jason Kubel (MIN)(NYY-1, BAL-3, @CHW-3)21 G, .270 AVG, 2 HR, .782 OPS
Career at U.S. Cellular Field: 15 G, .340 AVG, 6 HR, 24 RBIs, 11 R, 1.090 OPS
Yadier Molina (STL)(PIT-1, @WAS-3, @HOU-3)23 G, .308 AVG, 1 HR, .738 OPS
April 4-6 versus WAS: 4-for-10, 4 RBIs, .917 OPS ... 2008 versus LHP: .383 AVG, 1 HR, .993 OPS
Ty Wigginton (HOU)(@PIT-3, STL-3)20 G, .274 AVG, 1 HR, .784 OPS
2008 versus LHP: .348 AVG, .945 OPS ... Career versus LHP: .282 AVG, .852 OPS
Delmon Young (MIN)(NYY-1, BAL-3, @CHW-3)25 G, .250 AVG, .677 OPS
Career at U.S. Cellular Field: 11 G, .452 AVG, 11 RBIs, 1.180 OPS ... Career versus LHP: .294 AVG, .748 OPS
All statistics above are through the games of Thursday, May 29.

Note: Matchups are determined by examining both an opponent's catcher and pitching staff. Obviously, teams like the Indians (catcher: Victor Martinez) and Mets (Brian Schneider) rate as tough teams to run on, while teams like the Dodgers (Russell Martin) and Orioles (Ramon Hernandez) rate as easy teams to run on.

Good for stolen basesTop speedsters
Cubs (@SD-3, @LAD-4)Ryan Theriot (9), Kosuke Fukudome (4)
Mets (@SF-3, @SD-4)Jose Reyes (16), Luis Castillo (9)
Royals (@CHW-3, @NYY-3)Joey Gathright (14 SB), no one else has more than 3
Twins (NYY-1, BAL-3, @CHW-3)Carlos Gomez (17), Delmon Young (8)
Poor for stolen basesTop speedsters
Astros (@PIT-3, STL-3)Michael Bourn (24), Kazuo Matsui (11)
Padres (CHC-3, NYM-4)Tadahito Iguchi (7), Khalil Greene (3)
Tigers (@OAK-3, CLE-3)Carlos Guillen (3), Ivan Rodriguez (3)
White Sox (KC-3, MIN-3)Orlando Cabrera (7), Carlos Quentin (4)

Note: As with the hitter-friendly ballparks, pitcher-friendly ballparks are based mostly on 2005-08 data, with some personal opinion involved.

Good for pitchersPoor for pitchers
Angels (@SEA-3, @OAK-3) Brewers (ARI-3, @COL-3)
Cubs (@SD-3, @LAD-4) Mariners (LAA-3, @BOS-3)
Mets (@SF-3, @SD-4) Rays (@BOS-3, @TEX-3)
Yankees (@MIN-1, TOR-3, KC-3) Reds (@PHI-4, @FLA-3)
Games at pitcher-friendly ballparks
Busch Stadium (STL): Pirates, June 2
Dolphin Stadium (FLA): Reds, June 6-8
McAfee Coliseum (OAK): Tigers, June 2-4; Angels, June 6-8
Metrodome (MIN): Yankees, June 2; Orioles, June 3-5
Petco Park (SD): Cubs, June 2-4; Mets, June 5-8
Safeco Field (SEA): Angels, June 2-4
Shea Stadium (NYM): No games

Two-start notes: Consider this week's mixed-league cut-off point about No. 24, Jason Marquis. No. 20 (Joba Chamberlain) and No. 22 (Pedro Martinez) might be risky, but their matchups are too favorable to ignore. ... I'm assuming the Rockies skip fifth starter Glendon Rusch this turn through the rotation, giving Jeff Francis a second start. He's not a recommended Week 10 option in any format, though.

Two-start pitchers -- Tristan's rankings
Pitcher (Team)First start (Opponent)Second start (Opponent)
1. Carlos Zambrano (CHC)June 2, @SD (Estes)June 7, @LAD (Lowe)
Last 5 GS: 3-0, 2.65 ERA, 1.21 WHIP ... 2004-07 at Dodger Stadium: 4 GS, 2-0, 0.91 ERA, 0.84 WHIP
2. Roy Halladay (TOR)June 3, @NYY (Chamberlain)June 8, BAL (Trachsel)
Last 5 GS: 4-1, 2.68 ERA, 0.92 WHIP ... 2005-08 at Yankee Stadium: 5 GS, 2-1, 1.22 ERA, 1.00 WHIP
3. Ervin Santana (LAA)June 2, @SEA (Bedard)June 8, @OAK (Harden)
Last 5 GS: 2-2, 3.79 ERA, 1.01 WHIP ... Career at McAfee Coliseum: 5 G, 4 GS, 3-0, 1.57 ERA, 0.91 WHIP
4. Andy Pettitte (NYY)June 2, @MIN (L. Hernandez)June 7, KC (Bannister)
Last 5 GS: 2-2, 4.34 ERA, 1.45 WHIP ... 2000-08 versus KC: 9 GS, 7-0, 2.77 ERA, 1.15 WHIP
5. Aaron Harang (CIN)June 3, @PHI (Eaton)June 8, @FLA (Badenhop)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 6.17 ERA, 1.71 WHIP ... Career at Citizens Bank Park: 3 G, 2 GS, 1-0, 5.40 ERA, 1.60 WHIP
6. Adam Wainwright (STL)June 2, PIT (Gorzelanny)June 7, @HOU (Chacon)
Last 5 GS: 2-1, 3.21 ERA, 1.16 WHIP ... 2007 at Minute Maid Park: 2 GS, 1-0, 1.29 ERA, 1.14 WHIP
7. Erik Bedard (SEA)June 2, LAA (E. Santana)June 8, @BOS (Masterson)
Last 5 GS: 2-2, 6.04 ERA, 1.34 WHIP ... Career at Fenway Park: 5 GS, 2-3, 8.10 ERA, 2.01 WHIP
8. Matt Garza (TB)June 3, @BOS (Masterson)June 8, @TEX (D. Mathis)
Last 5 GS: 3-1, 2.43 ERA, 1.23 WHIP ... Career at Fenway Park: 2 GS, 2-0, 2.53 ERA, 1.41 WHIP
9. Rich Harden (OAK)June 2, DET (Bonderman)June 8, LAA (E. Santana)
Last 5 GS: 2-0, 2.83 ERA, 1.29 WHIP ... 2006-08 home: 13 GS, 5-2, 3.18 ERA, 1.22 WHIP
10. Zack Greinke (KC)June 3, @CHW (G. Floyd)June 8, @NYY (Chamberlain)
Last 5 GS: 2-1, 4.78 ERA, 1.44 WHIP ... 2008 road: 6 GS, 3-2, 3.46 ERA, 1.31 WHIP
11. Oliver Perez (NYM)June 2, @SF (J. Sanchez)June 7, @SD (Estes)
Last 5 GS: 2-1, 5.58 ERA, 1.37 WHIP ... 2007-08 road: 18 GS, 11-6, 3.46 ERA, 1.34 WHIP
12. Gavin Floyd (CHW)June 3, KC (Greinke)June 8, MIN (Slowey)
Last 5 GS: 3-2, 3.27 ERA, 1.12 WHIP ... 2008 versus MIN: 2 GS, 1-1, 1.88 ERA, 0.84 WHIP
13. Brad Penny (LAD)June 3, COL (Francis)June 8, CHC (Marquis)
Last 5 GS: 0-4, 9.43 ERA, 1.92 WHIP ... Career versus COL: 23 GS, 14-2, 3.06 ERA, 1.18 WHIP
14. Scott Olsen (FLA)June 2, @ATL (Jo-Jo Reyes)June 7, CIN (Arroyo)
Last 5 GS: 1-1, 4.97 ERA, 1.55 WHIP ... July 20, 2007 versus CIN: Win, 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 5 K's
15. Tim Wakefield (BOS)June 2, @BAL (Guthrie)June 7, SEA (Batista)
Last 5 GS: 1-3, 5.59 ERA, 1.28 WHIP ... 2003-07 at Camden Yards: 9 GS, 4-3, 4.53 ERA, 1.51 WHIP
16. Aaron Laffey (CLE)June 2, @TEX (Padilla)June 7, @DET (Rogers)
Last 5 GS: 3-2, 0.79 ERA, 1.03 WHIP ... Career road: 8 GS, 4-2, 3.92 ERA, 1.28 WHIP
17. Jeremy Bonderman (DET)June 2, @OAK (Harden)June 8, CLE (Westbrook)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 4.91 ERA, 1.47 WHIP ... Career at McAfee Coliseum: 4 GS, 2-1, 2.89 ERA, 1.04 WHIP
18. Derek Lowe (LAD)June 2, COL (G. Reynolds)June 7, CHC (Zambrano)
Last 5 GS: 0-3, 5.64 ERA, 1.42 WHIP ... Career versus CHC: 7 GS, 1-1, 3.15 ERA, 1.25 WHIP
19. Jake Westbrook (CLE)June 3, @TEX (D. Mathis)June 8, @DET (Bonderman)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 3.12 ERA, 1.15 WHIP ... Career at Rangers Ballpark: 4 GS, 3-1, 6.14 ERA, 1.73 WHIP
20. Joba Chamberlain (NYY)June 3, TOR (Halladay)June 8, KC (Greinke)
Career as reliever: 39 G, 3-2, 1.32 ERA, 0.94 WHIP ... Career versus TOR: 9 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 14 K's
21. Bronson Arroyo (CIN)June 2, @PHI (K. Kendrick)June 7, @FLA (Olsen)
Last 5 GS: 3-0, 1.95 ERA, 1.27 WHIP ... 2007-08 road: 24 GS, 6-11, 4.26 ERA, 1.48 WHIP
25. Pedro Martinez (NYM)June 3, @SF (Zito)June 8, @SD (Ledezma)
May 28 rehab start (Class A): 6 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 6 K's ... Career at Petco Park: 2 GS, 1-1, 4.50 ERA, 1.08 WHIP
22. Wandy Rodriguez (HOU)June 3, @PIT (Dumatrait)June 8, STL (Lohse)
Last 5 GS: 1-1, 2.89 ERA, 1.29 WHIP ... Career at PNC Park: 5 GS, 1-3, 5.28 ERA, 1.45 WHIP
23. Jason Marquis (CHC)June 3, @SD (Ledezma)June 8, @LAD (Penny)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 5.53 ERA, 1.66 WHIP ... Career at Dodger Stadium: 3 GS, 1-0, 2.25 ERA, 0.85 WHIP
24. Jo-Jo Reyes (ATL)June 2, FLA (Olsen)June 7, PHI (K. Kendrick)
Last 5 GS: 1-3, 5.47 ERA, 1.59 WHIP ... Career home: 10 G, 9 GS, 3-2, 4.86 ERA, 1.66 WHIP
26. Kevin Slowey (MIN)June 3, BAL (Trachsel)June 8, @CHW (G. Floyd)
Last 5 GS: 2-3, 2.87 ERA, 1.02 WHIP ... May 8, 2008 at U.S. Cellular Field: Loss, 5 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 4 K's
27. Jonathan Sanchez (SF)June 2, NYM (Ol. Perez)June 8, @WAS (Od. Perez)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 5.20 ERA, 1.66 WHIP ... 2008 season: 11 GS, 3-3, 4.26 ERA, 1.45 WHIP
28. Kyle Kendrick (PHI)June 2, CIN (Arroyo)June 7, @ATL (Jo-Jo Reyes)
Last 5 GS: 2-0, 4.62 ERA, 1.50 WHIP ... Career versus CIN: 2 GS, 2-0, 6.55 ERA, 1.73 WHIP
29. Justin Masterson (BOS)June 3, TB (Garza)June 8, SEA (Bedard)
Last 2 GS: 1-0, 1.46 ERA, 0.97 WHIP ... 2008 Double-A Portland: 8 GS, 1-3, 4.23 ERA, 1.38 WHIP
30. Doug Davis (ARI)June 2, MIL (Suppan)June 8, @PIT (Dumatrait)
Last 4 GS: 2-2, 4.57 ERA, 1.71 WHIP ... 2006-07 at PNC Park: 5 GS, 1-3, 8.06 ERA, 1.95 WHIP
31. Jorge Campillo (ATL)June 3, FLA (Badenhop)June 8, PHI (Eaton)
Last 3 GS: 2-0, 0.60 ERA, 0.60 WHIP ... 2008 home: 8 G, 2 GS, 1.53 ERA, 0.96 WHIP
32. Kyle Lohse (STL)June 3, @WAS (Od. Perez)June 8, @HOU (W. Rodriguez)
Last 5 GS: 2-1, 4.34 ERA, 1.34 WHIP ... 2008 road: 4 GS, 2-1, 6.05 ERA, 1.97 WHIP
33. Greg Reynolds (COL)June 2, @LAD (Lowe)June 7, MIL (Bush)
Last 4 GS: 0-2, 5.40 ERA, 1.41 WHIP ... 2008 Triple-A Colorado Springs: 7 GS, 1-2, 4.86 ERA, 1.62 WHIP
No thank you (in alphabetical order): Burke Badenhop (FLA), June 3, @ATL (Campillo), June 8, CIN (Harang); Phil Dumatrait (PIT), June 3, HOU (W. Rodriguez), June 8, ARI (D. Davis); Adam Eaton (PHI), June 3, CIN (Harang), June 8, @ATL (Campillo); Shawn Estes (SD), June 2, CHC (Zambrano), June 7, NYM (Ol. Perez); Jeff Francis (COL), June 3, @LAD (Penny), June 8, MIL (Suppan); Tom Gorzelanny (PIT), June 2, @STL (Wainwright), June 7, ARI (Haren); Jeremy Guthrie (BAL), June 2, BOS (Wakefield), June 7, @TOR (A. Burnett); Livan Hernandez (MIN), June 2, NYY (Pettitte), June 7, @CHW (Buehrle); Wilfredo Ledezma (SD), June 3, CHC (Marquis), June 8, NYM (P. Martinez); Doug Mathis (TEX), June 3, CLE (Westbrook), June 8, TB (Garza); Vicente Padilla (TEX), June 2, CLE (Laffey), June 7, TB (Sonnanstine); Odalis Perez (WAS), June 3, STL (Lohse), June 8, SF (J. Sanchez); Jeff Suppan (MIL), June 2, ARI (D. Davis), June 8, @COL (Francis); Steve Trachsel (BAL), June 3, @MIN (Slowey), June 8, @TOR (Halladay).

One-start pitchers -- value plays (owned in under 50 percent of ESPN.com leagues)
Pitcher (Team)Start (Opponent)
Jason Bergmann (WAS)June 6, SF (Misch)
Last 5 GS: 1-1, 3.60 ERA, 1.20 WHIP ... 2008 home: 4 G, 3 GS, 0-1, 5.03 ERA, 1.37 WHIP
Brian Burres (BAL)June 6, @TOR (Marcum)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 5.52 ERA, 1.43 WHIP ... Career at Rogers Centre: 2 GS, 1-1, 1.50 ERA, 1.33 WHIP
Daniel Cabrera (BAL)June 4, @MIN (Perkins)
Last 5 GS: 3-0, 3.03 ERA, 1.18 WHIP ... Career at Metrodome: 4 GS, 2-1, 2.59 ERA, 1.48 WHIP
Jose Contreras (CHW)June 5, KC (Meche)
Last 5 GS: 3-0, 1.54 ERA, 0.86 WHIP ... Career versus KC: 15 GS, 8-4, 3.41 ERA, 1.15 WHIP
Armando Galarraga (DET)June 3, @OAK (Eveland)
Last 5 GS: 2-2, 4.55 ERA, 1.29 WHIP ... 2008 road: 5 GS, 4-1, 2.23 ERA, 0.90 WHIP
Hiroki Kuroda (LAD)June 6, CHC (Gallagher)
Last 5 GS: 1-2, 2.64 ERA, 1.34 WHIP ... 2008 home: 5 GS, 1-0, 3.90 ERA, 1.33 WHIP
Garrett Olson (BAL)June 5, @MIN (S. Baker)
Last 5 GS: 3-1, 4.44 ERA, 1.52 WHIP ... 2008 road: 3 GS, 1-1, 6.28 ERA, 1.67 WHIP
Darrell Rasner (NYY)June 6, KC (Davies)
Last 4 GS: 3-1, 1.80 ERA, 0.88 WHIP ... Career home: 13 G, 8 GS, 5-3, 3.26 ERA, 1.09 WHIP
Greg Smith (OAK)June 7, LAA (Garland)
Last 5 GS: 1-3, 2.97 ERA, 1.29 WHIP ... 2008 home: 5 GS, 2-1, 2.27 ERA, 1.14 WHIP
Randy Wolf (SD)June 6, NYM (J. Santana)
Last 5 GS: 1-3, 5.83 ERA, 1.53 WHIP ... 2002-07 versus NYM: 18 GS, 8-3, 3.23 ERA, 1.20 WHIP

Tristan H. Cockcroft covers fantasy sports for ESPN.com. You can e-mail him here.

ALSO SEE