No. 10 – Ryan Vogelsong was effective again on Monday, earning the win over the Chicago Cubs. Vogelsong has been a pleasant surprise and can be started with confidence on the heels of seven straight good outings. Be aware that while the veteran righty will help your team’s earned run average and walks plus hits per inning pitched, he is not a dependable source of strikeouts.
No. 9 – With a string of solid outings, Frank Francisco appears to have a firm grasp on the reins of the closer job with the New York Mets. Jon Rauch had another rocky outing on Monday. Pair this with some arm troubles and Francisco is firmly entrenched in the closer role. You know a string of implosions are not only possible but probable, but that is the chance you take with a closer of the likes of Francisco.
No. 8 – After being released by the Los Angeles Angels, Bobby Abreu rebounded and latched on with the cross town Los Angeles Dodgers. Abreu won’t get the benefit of the occasional designated hitter assignment, but he can still be useful. He was able to collect two hits on Monday and drive in a run. He should get regular time while Matt Kemp is on the shelf, so enjoy the regular playing time while you can.
No. 7 – Jaime Garcia’s troubles away from Busch Stadium are well documented, and Tuesday figures to be more of the same. Not only are Garcia and the St. Louis Cardinals playing away from home, but they square off with the Houston Astros. Garcia has never notched a win against the Astros, while carrying an earned run average pushing seven. If I owned Garcia and benched him, all these circumstances could only result in a 20-strikeout, perfect game. However, I don’t own Garcia in any of my leagues, so you can bench him with confidence.
No. 6 – Allen Craig returned from the disabled list late last week and is being eased back in to an everyday role with the St. Louis Cardinals. He collected a hit Sunday and followed it up with two more hits and three runs batted in. If you are looking for outfield help, you may look no further than Craig.
No. 5 – Though he typically struggles to get run support, Ryan Dempster is a good option for fantasy owners looking to stream their pitching. Dempster is 15-6 with a solid 2.75 earned run average in his career against the Milwaukee Brewers. Use him if you need the start.
No. 4 – Tim Lincecum has to turn it around soon, doesn’t he? I don’t know if a full turnaround is in the cards for Lincecum given his early season struggles, but Tuesday should be a good outing and glimmer of hope. Lincecum has historically pitched very well against the San Diego Padres and will have the benefit of playing in the cavernous Petco Park. Lincecum owners, cross your fingers.
No. 3 – I could run down the New York Yankees that have a strong track record when facing James Shields, but this article is limited to 10 highlights. With Shields’ career struggles against the Yankees, the easy advice is just to make sure that all your New York position players are in your active lineup for Tuesday.
No. 2 – Carlos Beltran has been a valuable five category contributor in the early going. He has slowed recently on the heels of a knee injury and struggled through a 0-for-5 performance Monday afternoon. Keep a close eye on Beltran and his knee as he has a history of injury struggles that could sideline him at any time.
No. 1 – If you are looking for a versatile player with multiple position eligibility to add, you may want to consider Kyle Seager. Seager currently has third base eligibility but is only a few games from adding second base to his eligibility in many leagues. Hitting in the third slot for the Seattle Mariners, he has the ability to steal the occasional base for you and can slug a few home runs, like he did against the Los Angeles Angels on Monday night.