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The Good, The Bad, and The Two-Start Pitchers September 23

Position Players to Start

Chase Headley has had a breakout season, driving in more than 100 runs and approaching 30 home runs. This week he has several matchups in his favor that should allow him to continue to contribute to your team. Headley leads the majors in home runs and runs batted in since the All-Star break, and his hot bat deserves a spot in your lineup the rest of the way.

After missing a large chunk of the season with injuries, Michael Morse has found his stride and appears to be back to form. Morse was able to play in both games of a doubleheader this week, showing that he healthy again. Morse matches up with starting pitchers that he has had good success against in his career and should be a solid play this week. The majority of his successes have come against pitchers that he faces at the end of the week, so if he starts out a little slow, be patient.

Asdrubal Cabrera has heated up over the last week despite battling through a minor wrist issue. Cabrera has a very good track record against the staff of pitchers he figures to face this week. After a great season last year, Cabrera was overvalued this season, so if you have him on your team, you likely overpaid for him. Make sure that you get the most out of him in what figures to be one of his stronger weeks this season.

Position Players to Avoid

Pedro Alvarez makes another appearance on the list of players that you should avoid this week. Alvarez has hit two home runs in the last two weeks, but both of those came in one game. With a career batting average of below .200 against the starting pitchers that he faces this week, Alvarez is staring another subpar week directly in the face. Finding a better option shouldn’t be difficult.

Neil Walker has been suffering through a sore back, and my best advice is that you not let him be a burden on your back and lineup this week. The Pittsburgh second baseman has not been a reliable fantasy producer for much of this season, and the outlook for this week is not encouraging, either. Walker is being given days off more often than normal as he deals with the back issues. Expect him to get a day or two off this week, and even when he is in the lineup his history against this week’s starters suggest that he will struggle. Leave him on your bench this week.

Some people will point to Yonder Alonso’s low power numbers as a major disappointment. I would offer the San Diego first baseman and his .280 average are indicative of a mature hitter, who is aware of his limitations while playing at Petco Park. Despite the progress from Alonso this season, he will have a much tougher week given his matchups. He has a limited number of at-bats against the starters he faces, but four of the five pitchers have limited him to an average of less than .150. Alonso is a useful player and he figures to have even more value next season, but this week he should be reserved.

Two-Start Pitchers

Two favorable matchups:

Chris Sale, Chicago White Sox

Josh Beckett, Los Angeles Dodgers

Mike Fiers, Milwaukee

Split decision:

Derek Holland, Texas

Yu Darvish, Texas

Phil Hughes, New York Yankees

Lance Lynn, St. Louis

C.J. Wilson, Los Angeles Angels

Jordan Zimmermann, Washington

Double trouble:

Trevor Cahill, Arizona

One-Start Wonders

Even though these guys get only one start this week, all signs point to them having the opportunity to register good numbers. Make sure to have them active.

Mat Latos, Cincinnati

Jon Lester, Boston

Yovani Gallardo, Milwaukee

Zack Greinke, Los Angeles Angels

Clayton Richard, San Diego

Tommy Hanson, Atlanta

Dan Haren, Los Angeles Angels

Matt Harrison, Texas

Ivan Nova, New York Yankees

Jarrod Parker, Oakland

Wait Until Next Week

Ian Kennedy, Arizona

Jamie Garcia, St. Louis

Ryan Dempster, Texas

Kyle Kendrick, Philadelphia

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