Picking players for your fantasy baseball salary cap team shouldn’t be too difficult with some of the match-ups we’re looking at today. You’ve got some real nice pitchers in favorable situations and, as always, some seriously strong hitting. Take your time and pore through the data as best you can in order to ensure that you are making the right choices for your MLB Lineups. Here’s a look at the numbers for several of the games being played today.
Washington Nationals at Toronto Blue Jays (12:37pm ET)
Nationals ace right-hander Stephen Strasburg is on the hill and is looking sharp with a 2.41 ERA and holding opposing batters to a .215 average. He shuts down righties better than lefties which should prove to be a tough match-up with Colby Rasmus who is batting .364 with three home runs and two doubles over his last 33 at-bats this year. The Jays will throw right-hander Kyle Drabek into action and hope that he can maintain his dominance over left-handed hitters, especially Bryce Harper who is batting .321 with one home run over his last 28 at-bats. Also look out for lefty Adam LaRoche who has three home runs in his last six games.
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New York Mets at Tampa Bay Rays (7:10pm ET)
Is there another pitcher in baseball that is hotter than Mets knuckler R.A. Dickey? Over his last seven starts, he’s 6-0 with a 1.25 ERA and a 50:9 K:BB ratio and hasn’t allowed a run in his last 23.2 innings. He’ll look to continue that trend as he holds Carlos Pena to a .182 average and catches a break as Ben Zobrist, who is batting .421 with two home runs over his last 19 at-bats, is questionable with a bruised hand. On the hill for the Rays is southpaw David Price who has a 1.03 ERA over his last four starts and has been holding batters to a .236 average this season. He dominates everyone, but lefties a little bit more which will make for an interesting match-up with shortstop Omar Quintanilla who is batting .389 over his last 18 at-bats this season.
New York Yankees at Atlanta Braves (7:10pm ET)
Yankees right-hander Hiroki Kuroda owns a 2.79 ERA over his last three starts against the Braves and is holding them to a .225 average over 19.1 innings if work. Dan Uggla is batting just .235 against him over 17 at-bats and Michael Bourn struggles as well with a .222 average over 18 at-bats. Even Brian McCann has his difficulties, batting .100 over 10 at-bats. The Braves are going with veteran Tim Hudson who oddly struggles at home as evidenced by his 5.92 ERA at Turner Field. It could be more rough waters ahead as Alex Rodriguez is batting .359 against him with three home runs and two doubles over 39 at-bats. Raul Ibanez does a good job against Hudson as well, batting .295 with a home run and six doubles over 61 at-bats.
Cleveland Indians at Cincinnati Reds (7:10pm ET)
Sinker-baller Derek Lowe is on the hill for the Tribe and he’s proven to do a solid job in containing these Reds. Joey Votto is batting .273 with no extra-base hits and Brandon Phillips is batting a woeful .176 over 17 at-bats. But look out for Ryan Ludwick who is batting a robust .474 with four home runs over 19 at-bats. For the Reds, right-hander Mat Latos gets the call as he looks to improve on that 6.35 ERA he’s had over his last three starts. He struggles to contain lefties who are hitting .317 against him, which bodes well for Jason Kipnis who is hitting .360 with a home run and two doubles over his last 25 at-bats.
Detroit Tigers at Chicago Cubs (8:05pm ET)
This should be an interesting match-up for Cubs right-hander Matt Garza who is holding righties to a .195 average this season. He’s held Miguel Cabrera in check, having given up just one home run and a .200 average, but shortstop Jhonny Peralta is killing it with a .409 average over 22 at-bats against Garza. The Tigers will counter with ground ball specialist Rick Porcello who is strangely struggling against David DeJesus who is batting .400 with a double and a triple through 20 at-bats. Alfonso Soriano should prove to be a tough test as he is hitting .375 with three home runs over his last 24 at-bats.
Milwaukee Brewers at Kansas City Royals (8:10pm ET)
Lefty Jonathan Sanchez finally returns from the disabled list after dealing with a bout of biceps tendinitis and takes on a somewhat familiar opponent from his days in the National League. He’s made three starts against the Brewers and owns a 1.80 ERA over 20 innings of work. He does have a bit of trouble with Corey Hart who is batting .364 against him, but kills Rickie Weeks, holding him to a .167 average over 14 plate appearances. The Brewers will go with veteran lefty Randy Wolf who is coming off of 6.2 shutout innings against the Cubs. While Brayan Pena usually catches Sanchez, the Royals might go with Humberto Quintero who is batting .353 with a home run and a double over 17 at-bats against Wolf. He’ll also have his hands full with Jeff Francoeur who is batting .286 through 14 at-bats.
Houston Astros at San Francisco Giants (10:15pm ET)
June has been a rough month for Astros lefty J.A. Happ, posting a 5.40 ERA over two losing starts. He does have a 3.75 ERA over his last two starts against the Giants with one of those games coming at AT&T Park in which he posted a 1.50 ERA over six innings. But since then the Giants have a few newcomers. Angel Pagan is batting .286 with a double and while Ryan Theriot is hitting just .167 with a double in 12 at-bats against him, he is batting .360 over his last 27 plate appearances. For the Giants, ace right-hander Matt Cain is on the mound looking as dominant as ever with a 2.41 ERA and holding the opposition to a .209 average. He’s bested a number of Astros in his time, including J.D. Martinez (.200) and Chris Snyder (.182).
Howard Bender has been covering fantasy sports for over ten years on a variety of web sites, including his own, The Fantasy Baseball Buzz. You can follow him on Twitter @rotobuzzguy or you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.