Description: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz has a .000 career average (0-for-9) against Oakland right-hander Jarrod Parker.
Insight: Cruz already has 11 homers in 166 at-bats in 2013, after hitting 24 in 585 at-bats last season, but for the third consecutive year is batting below .265. It's all or nothing with the Texas slugger and against Parker it has been nothing.
Description: Rangers right-hander Nick Tepesch has been scratched from his scheduled start Wednesday due to a blister on his right middle finger, according to Anthony Andro of FoxSportsSouthwest.com. Ross Wolf will make a spot start.
Insight: Rangers GM Jon Daniels said that Tepesch's blister is already healing and the rookie could start as soon as Sunday. Tepesch is 3-4 with a 3.98 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP in 43 innings this season.
Description: Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus is hitless on six at-bats versus Oakland starter Dan Straily.
Insight: Andrus has raised his average to .276. The shortstop continues to be a source for runs scored and stolen bases, but his .664 OPS is a drain on power categories. This is not a favorable matchup.
Description: Texas manager Ron Washington told ESPN Dallas that Jurickson Profar will split playing time at second base with Leury Garcia while Ian Kinsler is out.
Insight: The 20-year-old Profar went 3-for-17 in a short stint with Texas at the end of last season. It's no secret that Profar is the team's best long-term option at second base so if he's playing well, we'd expect Washington to give him the most reps.
Description: Rangers infielder Jurickson Profar, who is the No. 1 prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com's rankings, officially has been called up to the majors, according to T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com. He'll fill in for Ian Kinsler, who was placed on the DL with a right intercostal strain.
Insight: Profar hit .281 with 14 homers, 16 steals and a .368 OBP at Double-A Frisco last year, and he has been hitting well with Triple-A Round Rock after a slow start. He's hitting .278 with seven doubles, two triples, four homers and a .370 OBP. Profar should be added in most leagues.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a right intercostal strain. The team called up top prospect Jurickson Profar to take his place on the roster. SOURCE: T.R. Sullivan, MLB.com
Insight: Kinsler has not started the last two games due to the injury. Profar is considered the No. 1 overall prospect in the game by MLB.com and he should be added in most leagues.
Description: Rangers shortstop Jurickson Profar, who is the No. 1 prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com's rankings, has been summoned to Arlington in case the team needs to place Ian Kinsler (ribs) on the DL.
Insight: Profar hit .281 with 14 homers, 16 steals and a .368 OBP at Double-A Frisco last year, and he has been hitting well with Triple-A Round Rock after a slow start. He's hitting .278 with seven doubles, two triples, four homers and a .370 OBP. If Kinsler is placed on the DL, Profar would play every day and should be added in all leagues.
Description: Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus is just 4-for-22 (.182) in his career against Tigers starter Doug Fister.
Insight: Andrus finally has had some better luck recently and has raised his average to .282. The shortstop has a career-high 24.8 percent line-drive rate, but was hitting .262 before going 5-for-5 Saturday. Fister usually holds him in check, however.
Description: If you have held onto David Murphy through his crippling slump this season, Sunday would be a good day to start him. He'll face Tigers starter Doug Fister.
Insight: Murphy has been a platoon player over the last few seasons, but he was handed a starting job after Josh Hamilton signed with the Angels. He has hit just .205 with a .617 OPS. Murphy does have a .444 average (8-for-18) with four homers and eight RBI against Fister, however.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler is 6-for-10 against Detroit starter Rick Porcello with a couple of extra base hits and a 1.445 OPS. He's also stolen two bases against the Tigers' right-hander.
Insight: Kinsler has added a .300 batting average to he repertoire which makes him one of the top fantasy second baseman.
Description: Rangers starter Alexi Ogando has been placed on the disabled list with biceps tendinitis.
Insight: Ogando is 4-2 with a 3.08 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP this season. Texas has an entire rotation of starters on the DL -- Ogando, Matt Harrison, Neftali Felix, Colby Lewis and Martin Perez. Josh Lindblom will start Monday, but Perez is on his way back from a fractured forearm and could join the rotation soon.
Description: Rangers shortstop Jurickson Profar, who is the No. 1 prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com's rankings, is hitting .250 with 24 strikeouts and a .720 OPS in 34 games with Triple-A Round Rock.
Insight: Profar hit .368 with 14 homers, 16 steals and a .368 OBP at Double-A Frisco last year, but he struggled this spring with a .216 average and zero homers in 51 at-bats. With Mitch Moreland hitting .290 with nine homers and Profar slumping at Triple-A, there's no need to shift Ian Kinsler to first base to call up Profar anytime soon.
Description: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz' power has returned to his past levels this season after an outage in 2012, but he's unlikely to do much with the stick Thursday with Detroit starter Justin Verlander on the bump.
Insight: Cruz hits a lot of flyballs (42.3 percent FB rate), and has a career HR/FB of 16.1 percent, but last year that declined to 13.1 percent and he hit just 24 homers. He's back up to a 21.3 percent HR/FB and has 10 homers in 2013. However, Verlander has limited him to two hits in 15 at-bats (.133) and struck him out four times.
Description: Tigers starter Justin Verlander, who will be on the hill Thursday, has held Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus to a .188 average (3-for-16) in their career meetings.
Insight: Andrus has a strong line-drive rate of 23.7 percent, but he has been incredibly unlucky this season. He has lined out on 14 of his 33 liners. He has a career .678 average on line drives, and if he picked up just three more hits on liners this season, he'd be hitting .285 instead of .267. His luck should turn eventually, but he's unlikely to get good wood on the ball against Verlander Thursday.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler is 2-for-17 over his last four games and he'll face Justin Verlander Thursday against the Tigers.
Insight: Kinsler is 3-for-25 (.120) with six strikeouts against Verlander. His overall numbers -- .304, seven homers, 20 RBI, 22 runs, three steals, 16/12 K/BB -- are fantastic, but he's doubtful to produce anything worthwhile Thursday.
Description: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz hit his 10th homer of the season Wednesday against Oakland. The outfielder has three homers in his last five games.
Insight: Cruz hits a lot of flyballs (42.3 percent FB rate), and has a career HR/FB of 16.1 percent, but last year that declined to 13.1 percent and he hit just 24 homers. He's back up to a 21.3 percent HR/FB in 2013.
Description: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz has gone 1-for-10 against Tuesday's opposing starter Bartolo Colon.
Insight: Cruz's bat woke up in the two-game series against Houston with a pair of home runs (doesn't everyone's?) and he went 1-for-3 in the series opener with Oakland, but this is an unfavorable matchup.
Description: Rangers catcher A.J. Pierzynski has been moved to the disabled list.
Insight: Pierzynski (.263, 4 HR, 11 RBI) is out with a strained oblique. The move is backdated to May 6th, meaning that Pierzynski would be eligible to return on May 21st. Of course, it's possible that he could need more time.
Description: Texas Rangers minor league right-hander Josh Lindblom has apparently figured it out at Triple-A Round Rock where he is 4-0 with a 1.96 ERA and 0.845 WHIP.
Insight: Lindblom was acquired from Philadelphia in the Michael Young trade and struggled in spring training, but his 31 strikeouts to just 10 walks indicates he's found it. Unfortunately, the Rangers are No. 2 overall in team ERA, but it looks like Lindblom is ready to help if needed.
Description: Texas DH Lance Berkman is a career .290 hitter with a 1.147 OPS, including four home runs, against Milwaukee starter Kyle Lohse.
Insight: The oft-injured DH/1B has yet to play in the field which could explain why it's already May and he's yet to spend time on the disabled list. Berkman is batting .300 with an .882 OPS and should be in fantasy lineups for this favorable matchup.
Description: The Rangers scratched catcher A.J. Pierzynski from Tuesday's lineup with tightness in his right oblique muscle.
Insight: Pierzynski dealt with the same injury last week. He's hitting .263 with four homers and a .708 OPS this season, but his 27.8 percent line-drive rate is one of the best in baseball and should help him raise his average soon.
Description: Rangers catcher A.J. Pierzynski is just 3-for-18 (.167) against Cubs starter Scott Feldman.
Insight: Pierzynski isn't quite hitting up to the level of the man he is replacing, Mike Napoli (6 HR, 31 RBI in Boston), but he's batting a respectable .263 with four homers and 11 RBI. This matchup, however, isn;t likely to help those numbers.
Description: Rangers 1B/OF Jeff Baker has received more playing time lately due to the struggles of David Murphy, who is also dealing with a stomach virus. He's hitting .333 with three homers in 30 at-bats and has been nearly perfect against Boston starter Jon Lester.
Insight: Baker is 6-for-7 (.857) with a double against Lester, and he'll likely be in the lineup Sunday against the Red Sox.
Description: Texas left fielder David Murphy is not in the starting lineup Friday against Boston for the fourth straight game.
Insight: Murphy was handed a starting job after Josh Hamilton signed with the Angels but he is hitting .174 with two homers in 92 at-bats. Boston's Felix Doubront is the fourth straight lefty starter Texas has faced, leaving Murphy marooned on the bench in favor of Jeff Baker.
Description: Texas starting pitcher Colby Lewis (elbow) could start his rehab assignment on May 9, according to ESPN Dallas.
Insight: Lewis hasn't pitched since July after undergoing season-ending surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in his right elbow. He had been 6-6 with a 3.43 ERA and 1.076 WHIP in 16 starts before the injury and has been a solid fantasy starter over the last three seasons.
Description: Rangers starter Alexi Ogando went six innings and gave up four hits and three runs Wednesday at Minnesota.
Insight: Ogando struck out 10 batters in six innings against Houston in his first start of the season but he has 17 K in his last 25 2/3 innings. The right-hander is 2-2 with a 3.38 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP through six starts.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre's average slipped to .221 after his second straight 0-for-4 Sunday against Minnesota.
Insight: Beltre's line-drive rate, which was 21.1 percent last season, is down to 16.3 percent this year, and his HR/FB is just 10.5 percent, but his K rate is down and his walk rate is up from last year.
Description: Rangers shortstop Jurickson Profar, who is the No. 1 prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com's rankings, is hitting .218 in his first 15 games at Triple-A Round Rock this season, though he does have two homers, 11 walks and 10 RBI.
Insight: Profar hit .281 with 14 homers, 16 steals and a .368 OBP at Double-A Frisco last year, but he struggled this spring with a .216 average and zero homers in 51 at-bats. We'll continue to track his progress.
Description: Texas reliever Joakim Soria has been diagnosed with a strained pectoral muscle and will be shut down for the next 2-to-3 weeks. SOURCE: Jeff Wilson, Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Soria, who is still recovering from Tommy John surgery, isn't expected to be back in the major leagues until July. Joe Nathan is the closer in Texas so Soria won't be getting any ninth inning opportunities this season.
Description: Rangers right-hander Nick Tepesch was hit in the lower right arm with a line drive and had to exit Saturday's start.
Insight: The initial evaluation is that Tepesch has a right wrist contusion. He is icing it and will be re-evaluated Sunday, according to Keith Whitmire of foxsportssouthwest.com. Tepesch was making just his third big league start.
Description: Rangers lefthander Matt Harrison will have surgery on Tuesday to fix a herniated disk in his lower back. The procedure will keep Harrison sidelined until after the All-Star break. SOURCE: Anthony Andro, Fox Sports Southwest
Insight: Harrison (0-2, 8.44 ERA) was easily the team's best starting pitcher last season (18-11, 3.29) so this is a crushing blow to the Texas rotation. Fantasy owners can't be too thrilled either.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler went 2-for-4 with a solo homer Thursday against the Cubs.
Insight: Kinsler's runs, homers and walks all declined and his strikeouts increased last season, so it's a good sign that he has five homers, 11 runs, six walks and just six strikeouts in 14 games this season.
Description: Texas left fielder David Murphy is in the midst of a 2-for-16 slump and he's probably not going to snap out of it Thursday versus Chicago. Murphy has just one hit in 10 career at bats versus Cubs righthander Carlos Villanueva.
Insight: Murphy is having a miserable season (.160 AVG in 13 games) and should be benched in all formats until further notice.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler is hitting just .182 against Cubs righthander Carlos Villanueva in 11 previous at bats.
Insight: One of his two hits was a home run, so there is a glimmer of hope for fantasy owners who don't have any other options at second base. Kinsler (.294) is off to a pretty good start with four homers and nine RBI in his first 13 games.
Description: Rangers starter Derek Holland two-hit the Cubs and didn't walk a batter over seven scoreless innings Tuesday to pick up his first win of the season.
Insight: Holland has allowed 13 hits and four earned runs in 22 innings this season, a far cry from the 4.67 ERA he had in 2012. The left-hander's biggest issues last season were allowing homers (32 in 175 1/3 innings) and failing to strand runners (67.9% LOB). He has reversed both problems so far in 2013.
Description: If Texas DH Lance Berkman is to get a chance to start in the field, Tuesday's matchup is likely the best game to get that done. Berkman is 7-for-11 against Cubs' left-hander Travis Wood with a pair of homers and a 1.939 OPS.
Insight: The oft-injured hitter has been a DH in 10 games and has yet to play the field. With no DH in Wrigley, he might only see a couple at-bats in the entire series and this is his best matchup of the week as he's a .238 hitter versus Wednesday's starter Carlos Villanueva and a .200 hitter against Jeff Samardzija on Thursday.
Description: Texas DH Lance Berkman will likely struggle for at-bats beginning Tuesday when the Rangers travel to Chicago for a series with the Cubs.
Insight: The oft-injured hitter has been a DH in 10 games and has yet to play the field. With no DH in Wrigley, he might only see a couple at-bats in the entire series. Make plans to be without him until Texas starts a series with Seattle on Friday.
Description: Texas DH Lance Berkman won't be in the lineup Saturday versus the Mariners.
Insight: The goal is for Berkman to stay healthy all season so giving the veteran an off day every once in a while isn't a bad idea. He should be back in action Sunday against rookie righthander Brandon Maurer (0-2, 16.20 ERA).
Description: Rangers right-hander Nick Tepesch held Tampa Bay to one run on four hits over 7 1/3 innings in his major league debut Tuesday night. He walked three and struck out five.
Insight: Tepesch had a poor spring and owned a 4.28 ERA and 68 strikeouts in 90 1/3 innings at Double-A last season. He'll serve as the fifth starter until Martin Perez (fractured left forearm) or Colby Lewis (Tommy John surgery) returns to action in May.
Description: Jeff Wilson from the Fort Worth Star Telegram expects Rangers righthander Yu Darvish to start Friday night against Seattle. Darvish exited Sunday's game versus Anaheim because of a blister.
Insight: Darvish has been terrific this season so this news must come as a relief to fantasy owners. He went 2-2 with a 6.65 ERA in four starts against the Mariners in 2012.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy has a .143 average with 11 strikeouts in 49 at-bats against Los Angeles Angels right-hander Jered Weaver.
Insight: Murphy was a platoon player last season but he was handed the starting left field job when Josh Hamilton signed with the Angels. He is 3-for-19 with five Ks this season and should be avoided Sunday.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler has just 16 hits in 77 career at-bats against Angels starter Jered Weaver.
Insight: As a divisional opponent, Kinsler has faced Weaver plenty of times, and the verdict is in: he doesn't do well against the Angels righty. Kinsler is batting .238 with two homers, four RBIs and four runs in five games this season.
Description: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz hit his first homer of the season Saturday against the Angels.
Insight: Cruz took Ernesto Frieri deep for a solo shot in the ninth inning. Cruz is coming off his first 130-game season (he played 159), but he saw his HR/FB drop from 18.7 percent in 2011 to 13.1 percent. He is off to a .500 (10-for-20) start at the plate.
Description: Rangers catcher A.J. Pierzynski is hitless in eight career at-bats versus Angeles left-hander Jason Vargas.
Insight: Pierzynski is coming off the best offensive season of his career (.278, career-high 27 HR, 77 RBI in 135 games), but Friday might be a good day for Texas to give backup Geovany Soto a chance to play. Soto is 1-for-5 off Vargas with a home run.
Description: Texas starter Yu Darvish developed a small blister on his right ring finger during his near-perfect game Tuesday night but he is expected to make his next start Sunday against the Angels. SOURCE: Jeff Wilson, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Insight: Darvish came within one out of a perfect game Tuesday before allowing a single up the middle. After striking out 221 batters in 191 1/3 innings, posting a 3.29 FIP and trimming his walk rate as the year went on last season, the right-hander is due for a huge year in 2013.
Description: Texas starter Yu Darvish was nearly perfect Tuesday against the Astros, going 8 2/3 innings before allowing a single up the middle to Marwin Gonzalez. He threw 111 pitches to pick up his first win of the season.
Insight: Darvish struck out 14 Astros and gave up the lone hit. After striking out 221 batters in 191 1/3 innings, posting a 3.29 FIP and trimming his walk rate as the year went on last season, the right-hander is due for a huge year in 2013.
Description: Texas will start Craig Gentry in center field Tuesday against the Astros, according to Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com.
Insight: Gentry platooned with David Murphy last season and hit .343 with an .859 OPS and six steals against left-handers. Leonys Martin started the season opener against right-hander Bud Norris, but manager Ron Washington will go with Gentry on Tuesday even though right-hander Lucas Harrell will be on the hill.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre is a career .714 hitter (5-for-7) against Houston right-hander Lucas Harrell.
Insight: Beltre was brilliant in 2012, smashing 36 HR, 102 RBI and hitting .321 batting average in 156 games. Keeping him healthy will be key for the Rangers (and fantasy owners) in 2013 in a lineup without Josh Hamilton and Michael Young.
Description: CBS reports that the Rangers have inked shortstop Elvis Andrus to an eight-year, $120 million contract extension.
Insight: Andrus had been involved in trade rumors this offseason but apparently the Rangers had a change of heart and decided to keep their franchise shortstop. Top infield prospect Jurickson Profar is close to becoming a full-time big leaguer, which means that Ian Kinsler's status has to be addressed. Kinsler could be moved to a different position or the Rangers could just trade him.
Description: Rangers left-hander Matt Harrison was roughed up in his Opening Day start against the Astros Sunday night.
Insight: Harrison was tagged for six runs (five earned) on six hits and three walks in 5 2/3 innings, though he did strike out nine. He has won 32 games and recorded a 3.34 ERA over the past two seasons, so don't let one bad outing change your opinion of him.
Description: Nick Tepesch will start the season as the No. 5 starter for the Texas Rangers. He beat out Justin Grimm, Robbie Ross and Derek Lowe.
Insight: Tepesch had a poor spring and owned a 4.28 ERA and 68 strikeouts in 90 1/3 innings at Double-A last season. He'll serve as the fifth starter until Martin Perez (fractured left forearm) or Colby Lewis (Tommy John surgery) returns to action in May.
Description: Texas Rangers' top prospect 2B/SS Jurickson Profar will begin 2013 in the minors, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Profar, the No. 1 overall prospect on Baseball America's Top-100, is stuck behind Elvis shortstop Andrus and second baseman Ian Kinsler. Barring injury, or one of them moving to another position or team, Profar has no where to go to get the 500 at-bats needed to be a fantasy star.
Description: Rangers infielder Jeff Baker is batting .529 (18-for-34) with one homer this spring.
Insight: Baker is a utility player who played with three organizations and hit .239 with four homers in 2012. He's a career .266 hitter with a .744 OPS so his spring line is obviously not a harbinger of things to come.
Description: Derek Lowe has signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers.
Insight: Lowe (9-11, 5.11 ERA) will likely be a long relief man and spot starter but he isn't considered a candidate for the No. 5 spot in the rotation. The last time Lowe had a ERA under 4.00 and any real fantasy value was in 2008.
Description: Rangers left-hander Martin Perez will be shut down for the next four weeks after suffering a fractured left forearm Sunday, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Perez was hit by a comebacker in Sunday's spring training game.
Insight: Perez was expected to battle Robbie Ross, Kyle McClellan and Randy Wells for the final spot in Texas' rotation. The injury could force Texas to sign free agent Kyle Lohse.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre, who has been dealing with a right calf injury, is expected make his spring training debut on Monday, according to Drew Davison of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Beltre was brilliant in 2012, smashing 36 HR, 102 RBI and hitting .321 batting average in 156 games. Keeping him healthy will be key for the Rangers (and fantasy owners) in 2013 in a lineup without Josh Hamilton and Michael Young.
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz has been hospitalized with a muscle strain in his chest, according to the Associated Press. Assistant general manager Thad Levine said Friday that Cruz was sent to the hospital to rule out anything more serious.
Insight: Cruz is known for hitting homers and spending time in the training room, though he did play a career-high 159 games last season.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre, who had an MRI on his right calf which fortunately revealed just an inflammation, is expected to run the bases Monday, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Beltre was brilliant in 2012, smashing 36 HR, 102 RBI and hitting .321 batting average in 156 games. Keeping him healthy will be key for the Rangers (and fantasy owners) in 2013 in a lineup without Josh Hamilton and Michael Young.
Description: Rangers 1B/DH Lance Berkman, who has been dealing with a mild right calf strain, is expected to make his Cactus League debut eother Wednesday or Thursday this week.
Insight: Berkman can still swing a mean bat when healthy, but is so injury prone you have to be a big gambler to put him on your fantasy roster. He played just 32 games last season, but hit .301 with 31 HR and 94 RBI back in 2011 when he managed to play 145 games.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre had an MRI on his right calf which fortunately revealed just an inflammation and nothing else.
Insight: Beltre was brilliant in 2012, smashing 36 HR, 102 RBI and hitting .321 batting average in 156 games. Keeping him healthy will be key for the Rangers (and fantasy owners) in 2013 in a lineup without Josh Hamilton and Michael Young.
Description: According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Rangers first baseman Lance Berkman's right knee is about 80 percent.
Insight: Berkman missed most of last season dealing with knee injuries and eventually had to undergo surgery. Berkman should have a chance for a rebound year batting in the middle of a strong Texas lineup but at age 37, there's no guarantee that he'll be able to stay healthy for an entire season.
Description: Texas first baseman Mike Olt will see work in right field and third base this spring, according to sportswriter Anthony Andro.
Insight: Olt is a highly thought of prospect, who struggled in his first taste at the big league level (.152 in 33 at-bats), but has shown strong power numbers in the minors. He could be insurance for injury-prone/Biogenesis-connected Nelson Cruz.
Description: Texas starting pitcher Colby Lewis is ahead of his rehab schedule, according to a Fort Worth Star-Telegram report.
Insight: Lewis hasn't pitched since July after undergoing season-ending surgery on his right shoulder. He had been 6-6 with a 3.43 ERA and 1.076 WHIP in 16 starts before the injury. He's expected to return around the start of June. Fantasy owners should take a wait and see attitude before picking up Lewis.
Description: The Fort Worth Star-Telegram is reporting that Rangers reliever Joakim Soria is ahead of schedule on his return from Tommy John surgery.
Insight: Soria will not be in his usual closer role even when he is ready to pitch sometime in May, so fantasy owners should not expect much from him this season unless Texas closer Joe Nathan is injured.
Description: The Rangers have suggested that left-hander Derek Holland try toning down the comedy act and put more attention on baseball. SOURCE: Fort-Worth Star Telegram
Insight: Being a goofball who is both seen and heard often works just fine when you go 16-5 with a 3.95 ERA and throw 8 1/3 scoreless two-hit innings in the World Series like he did in 2011, but not when you post a 4.67 ERA like he did last year.
Description: Brandon Webb is calling it a career. The former Cy Young winner announced his retirement on Monday.
Insight: Webb hasn't pitched in the big leagues since 2009. He'll end his career with a marvelous 3.27 ERA in 199 career appearances. Webb's best season came in 2006 (the year he won the Cy Young award) when he tied for the league-lead in wins (16) and was third in the NL in ERA (3.10).
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz is one of a number of players listed by a Miami New Times report as being associated with a anti-aging clinic being investigated by MLB for distributing performance-enhancing drugs.
Insight: Other names given to the paper by an anonymous source included; Alex Rodriguez, Melky Cabrera, Bartolo Colon, Yasmani Grandal and Gio Gonzalez. A-Rod's hip surgery already made him a risky pick in 2013, but now fantasy owners will have to keep on top of this story before drafting Cruz and Gonzalez.
Description: Adam Rubin of ESPN reports that the Mets are interested in signing free agent starting pitcher Roy Oswalt.
Insight: Oswalt's tenure in Texas was pretty much a disaster so it's tough to tell how much the 35-year-old has left in the tank. If he does move back to the National League, Oswalt should see a modest improvement from the numbers he posted in 2012 (4-3, 5.80 ERA in 17 games).
Description: Rangers manager Ron Washington said Thursday that he expects Lance Berkman to hit third in 2013. SOURCE: Anthony Andro, FOXSportsSouthwest.com
Insight: Berkman (.259, 2 HR, 7 RBI in 32 games) barely played last season because of knee injuries but the No. 3 spot in Texas' order should provide him with plenty of RBI and run-scoring opportunities. He'll just have to stay healthy to take advantage of them.
Description: After flirting with the idea of moving Ian Kinsler to first base to make room for Jurickson Profar, Texas management has decided to leave Kinsler at second, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Kinsler's fantasy totals are very good for the second base position, but his HR and RBI totals are just average for a first baseman. Fantasy owners should be happy that the move wasn't made. The addition of free agent Lance Berkman along with incumbent Mitch Moreland should tie up most of the first base at-bats.
Description: Ken Rosenthal is reporting that 1B/DH Lance Berkman has agreed to a deal with the Texas Rangers.
Insight: Berkman (.259, 2 HR, 7 RBI in 32 games) barely played last season because of knee injuries. Playing in the American League with the DH, after spending almost his entire career in the NL, could be the best thing for his physical health. As always, Berkman is a high-risk fantasy option.
Description: Relief pitcher Jason Frasor signed a one-year deal with the Texas Rangers for 2013.
Insight: Frasor owns a couple of double-digit save seasons, but has not had a save since 2010. He was a middle relief guy for the White Sox and Blue Jays and figures to be in that same role for Texas. He can get you a strikeout-per-inning, but unless your league uses the hold category, his 2013 fantasy value figures to be minimal.
Description: According to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan, the Rangers have reached an agreement with catcher A.J. Pierzynski on a new one-year deal.
Insight: Terms of the deal weren't included. Pierzynski, who will turn 36 later this month, is coming off the best offensive season of his career (.278, career-high 27 HR, 77 RBI in 135 games). Pierzynski will see most of the work behind the plate with backup Geovany Soto (.198, 11 HR, 39 RBI) filling in about once every four or five games.
Description: Texas starting pitcher Colby Lewis has been cleared to begin throwing, according to a Dallas Morning News report.
Insight: Lewis hasn't pitched since July after undergoing season-ending surgery on his right shoulder. He had been 6-6 with a 3.43 ERA and 1.076 WHIP in 16 starts before the injury. Since coming to Texas in 2010, his fantasy value has been minimal although he did produce 196 strikeouts in one of the seasons.
Description: The Angels have joined the hunt for free agent outfielder Josh Hamilton according to Joel Sherman from the New York Post.
Insight: The market for Hamilton has been slow developing but now that the deep-pocketed Angels are in the mix, things should start to heat up. The Rangers, Red Sox and Phillies remain involved in Hamilton talks while the Yankees recently announced that they are no longer pursuing the former AL MVP.
Description: Ken Rosenthal from Fox Sports reports that the Red Sox are on the verge of signing righthander Ryan Dempster.
Insight: This comes as a bit of a surprise after Dempster rejected the team's two year, $25 million offer last week. It appears the two sides were able to find some middle ground. Dempster posted solid numbers in 2012 (12-8, 3.38 ERA) though his effectiveness began to fade late in the season (5.09 ERA over his final three months).
Description: Despite rejecting their original offer of two years and $25 million, free agent starting pitcher Ryan Dempster and the Red Sox are still having "serious discussions" according to Fox's Ken Rosenthal.
Insight: Dempster hasn't backed off his desire for a three-year contract, which is why he's still available at this point. Dempster struggled in the American League last year so Boston wouldn't seem like a great fit. If the Red Sox and Dempster decide to go separate ways, Boston could end up pursuing Kyle Lohse or Anibal Sanchez.
Description: Texas management is considering moving second baseman Ian Kinsler to first base to make room for Jurickson Profar, according to a Ken Rosenthal report.
Insight: Kinsler's totals are very good for the second base position, but his HR and RBI totals are just average for a first baseman. Hopefully he would still play a few games at the old position to keep his eligibility.
Description: The Mariners could be open to offering Josh Hamilton a five- or six-year deal. Meanwhile, the Yankees are not pursuing the free agent outfielder and won't do so unless his price tag drops significantly. SOURCE: Jon Heyman, CBSSports.com
Insight: The Rangers aren't out on Hamilton either, especially after losing Zack Greinke to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Description: According to T.R. Sullivan from MLB.com, Rangers infielder Michael Young has waived his no-trade clause and is willing to accept a deal to the Phillies.
Insight: The deal could become official later today. It's a clever move for Philadelphia after the team missed out on signing top free agents B.J. Upton and Angel Pagan earlier this offseason. Young provides veteran leadership, an above average bat (.301 career hitter) and the versatility to play several different positions. That should come in handy when Ryan Howard and Chase Utley inevitably get hurt again next season.
Description: Bob Nightengale of USA Today is reporting that the Yankees have done a background check on free agent outfielder Josh Hamilton.
Insight: The New York Post's Joel Sherman also wrote a column suggesting that the Yankees could be interested if Hamilton's asking price gets more in line with their budget. With the Yankees, anything is possible.
Description: According to Ken Rosenthal from Fox Sports, the Mariners have been in discussions with outfielder Josh Hamilton about a three-year deal worth $20-25 million a season.
Insight: Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times reported earlier in the day that the Mariners were "very close" to signing Hamilton, though Seattle's president Chuck Armstrong adamently denied that a deal was imminent. Obviously something is going on here. With the Rangers shifting their focus to Zack Greinke and Justin Upton, the Mariners have emerged as the favorites to land Hamilton.
Description: According to Fox Sports, the Rangers would be willing to part with lefthander Derek Holland if the team signs another starting pitcher this offseason.
Insight: Texas has spoken with Zack Greinke and Anibal Sanchez could be an option for them as well. The Rangers could deal Holland to Arizona as part of a trade for Justin Upton, a player Texas has coveted all offseason.
Description: Jon Heyman from CBS Sports reports catcher Geovany Soto and the Rangers have reached terms on a new one-year, $3 million contract.
Insight: With Mike Napoli headed to Boston, Soto is expected to start behind home plate for the Rangers next season. Soto's production has dropped off considerably over the past few seasons so we're not optimistic about his fantasy prospects heading into the 2013 campaign.
Description: The Angels, Brewers and Red Sox appear to be the front runners in the chase to land free agent righthander Ryan Dempster.
Insight: The report comes form Ken Rosenthal over at Fox Sports. Dempster has spent most of his career in the National League so Milwaukee would appear to be the best fit. The Red Sox, however, may have the deepest pockets and we've also learned never to rule out the Angels, who are currently in the process of finding a replacement for Zack Greinke.
Description: Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik has downplayed the team's interest in free agent outfielder Josh Hamilton.
Insight: The Mariners could definitely use Hamilton's bat but he's probably not a realistic option for them, especially if he's commanding a $175 million contract. Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston and Milwaukee remain in the hunt for Hamilton.
Description: Add the Yankees and Mariners to the list of teams in pursuit of free agent catcher/first baseman Mike Napoli.
Insight: USA Today's Bob Nightengale reported New York's interest while Jon Heyman from CBS Sports mentioned Seattle as a possible destination for Napoli. The former Texas catcher has also been courted by the Red Sox this offseason.
Description: Texas won't offer outfielder Josh Hamilton more than a three-year deal reports Bob Nightengale from USA Today.
Insight: Hamilton turned down the Rangers' qualifying offer on Friday, making him officially a free agent. The outfielder is said to be looking for a seven-year contract so we're guessing the three-year deal Texas is offering isn't going to cut it.
Description: The Red Sox could be in the market for free agent catcher/first baseman Mike Napoli according to Nick Cafardo from the Boston Globe.
Insight: Napoli (.227, 24 HR, 56 RBI) seems like a logical replacement for James Loney at first base. He could also see some time behind the plate whenever the Red Sox want to give Jarrod Saltalamacchia a rest. Napoli is a .306 lifetime hitter in 19 games at Fenway Park.
Description: The Rangers won't include shortstop Elvis Andrus or prospect Jurickson Profar in any trade for Diamondbacks outfielder Justin Upton according to Jon Heyman from CBS Sports.
Insight: Considering those were the two players Arizona wanted, this deal is probably not going to happen. That doesn't necessarily mean that Texas is done shopping Andrus though. Profar is considered the team's shortstop of the future.
Description: The Orioles could be in the running for free agent outfielder Josh Hamilton according to Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports.
Insight: Baltimore would seem like a good fit for Hamilton as he is hitting an incredible .370 at Camden Yards in 20 career games. Hamilton's epic four home run game came at the Orioles' home ballpark as well. With that said, the Orioles probably wouldn't be able to offer Hamilton the $175 million he is reportedly looking for. At this point, we'd consider Baltimore a longshot to land the former Texas slugger.
Description: Outfielder Josh Hamilton is reportedly seeking a deal in the neighborhood of seven years and $175 million on the open market this winter according to John Perrotto from Baseball Prospectus.
Insight: That's way out of the Rangers' price range so a return to Texas seems unlikely for the five-time All-Star. The $175 million seems a bit ambitious for a player in his early 30s with a history of off-field issues but it's always possible a desperate spender like the Red Sox or Yankees could overpay for his services. Remember, Prince Fielder and Albert Pujols both netted deals worth more than $200 million last offseason.
Description: The Brewers are expected to be big players in the Josh Hamilton sweepstakes this offseason according to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman.
Insight: Hamilton is very close with Milwaukee's hitting coach Johnny Narron, who served as a mentor to Hamilton for his first few seasons in Texas. A one-two punch of Hamilton and Ryan Braun (.319, 41 HR, 112 RBI) in the middle of the batting order could give the Brewers one of the most formidable lineups in all of baseball.
Description: Anthony Andro from Fox Sports Southwest reports that Rangers righthander Alexi Ogando would prefer to be a starter next season.
Insight: Ogando returned to the bullpen this season after making 29 starts in 2011. If Ogando can make the transition back to a starter, he could have some sleeper potential heading into next year's fantasy draft.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton had another miserable game Friday against Baltimore, going 0-for-4 and striking out in a pivotal moment with a runner in scoring position in the bottom of the eighth.
Insight: Two days after making an error that may have cost Texas a chance at a division title, Hamilton struggled again, whiffing twice against a team he clobbered during the regular season (6 HR, 12 RBI in 28 at bats). The 2010 American League MVP finished the year with 13 strikeouts in his final six games. Hamilton was showered with boos from a frustrated Texas crowd throughout the night. If this is how Hamilton, an impending free agent, finishes his career with the Rangers, it sure wasn't a happy ending.
Description: Texas starter Yu Darvish gave up three runs (two earned) in 6 2/3 innings of work Friday night in a loss to the Orioles.
Insight: Darvish struck out seven without walking a batter. Unfortunately for the Rangers, Baltimore's Joe Saunders was just as good, giving up only one run in 5 2/3 innings. After losing in the World Series two years in a row, the Rangers didn't even make it out of the first round this season. The Orioles now go on to face the Yankees in the ALDS.
Description: The Rangers will go with righthander Yu Darvish Friday in their one-game playoff against the Orioles.
Insight: Darvish (16-9, 3.90 ERA) has pitched very well over his last six starts (4-0, 1.85 ERA, 49 K's) so Ron Washington has decided to go with the hot hand. Darvish has never faced the Orioles but he is 10-2 this year at Rangers Ballpark, which is where he'll be pitching on Friday night. Baltimore hasn't named their starter for Friday yet.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre left the second game of Sunday's doubleheader due to a strained shoulder but he's in the lineup Monday.
Insight: Beltre has been banged up a number of times this season but he's always managed to return in a timely fashion. The third baseman is having his best all-around season since 2004, hitting .319 with 36 homers, 101 RBIs and 95 runs scored.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton is in a close battle for the AL home run title, but likely won't add to his total against Oakland right-hander Jarrod Parker. He's faced Parker six times and is hitless with a walk and four strikeouts.
Insight: Hamilton is batting .314 since Sept 15, but has homered just one time during that span. Meanwhile, Miguel Cabrera has hit seven home runs to pull into a tie.
Description: Amazingly, Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton is still hitless in his career against Angels starter Zack Greinke.
Insight: That's 0-for-16 for those of you keeping track at home. Hamilton fell into a first-place tie for the league-lead in home runs after Miguel Cabrera launched another homer Saturday in a win versus the White Sox.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler could be in for a tough time in Game 1 -- he's hitting a mere .136 in 22 lifetime at bats versus Angels ace Zack Greinke -- but Game 2 will provide him with the chance to extend his success against Ervin Santana.
Insight: Kinsler is just one long ball away from his fourth career 20-homer campaign. Don't expect him to get it in the first leg of Texas' doubleheader with the always stingy Greinke (15-5, 3.42 ERA) on the mound for Los Angeles, but he could do damage against Santana (19-for-52, 6 2Bs, 1 HR, 6 RBIs against the right-hander).
Description: Rangers righthander Yu Darvish is on track to start Sunday against Los Angeles. Darvish was scratched from his start Tuesday because of a stiff neck.
Insight: Darvish has won 16 of his 28 starts this season and would probably be a contender for the American League Rookie of the Year award if not for Mike Trout (.324, 28 HR, 78 RBI, 47 SB) and the incredible year he's having.
Description: Texas starter Yu Darvish has been scratched from his start Tuesday due to neck stiffness, according to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. According to Rangers officials, Darvish felt stiffness on Tuesday morning and the condition persisted after he had treatment.
Insight: Darvish has thrown seven straight quality starts and won his last four decisions. Scott Feldman will take his place Tuesday. The team has not announced plans for Darvish's next start.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton is back in the lineup after missing close to a week due to sinus and vision problems.
Insight: Hamilton has ocular keratitis, or blurred vision from intaking too much caffeine and energy drinks, according to Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com. Hamilton is tied with Miguel Cabrera for the major league lead with 42 homers, and Hamilton can prevent Cabrera from winning the AL Triple Crown if he overtakes him.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton missed the entire weekend series with the Mariners and is doubtful for Monday against Oakland with a sinus infection and blurred vision.
Insight: Hamilton's continuing absence could be just the opening Miguel Cabrera needs to win the triple crown. That's something Hamilton's fantasy owners thought he had a shot at through May of this season as he batted .368 with 21 HR and 57 RBI through the first 47 games.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre should be avoided in fantasy Sunday versus Seattle. He's hitting a pitiful .067 against Mariners righthander Jason Vargas in 15 career at bats.
Insight: Beltre (.316, 34 HR, 95 RBI) went 1-for-4 in his return from an intestinal illness on Saturday. You'd be lucky if you got that kind of production from him Sunday with Vargas (14-10, 3.92 ERA) on the hill.
Description: Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus is only hitting .228 with 16 strikeouts in 20 games this month and he's never had success against the pitcher he'll face Sunday, Jason Vargas of the Mariners.
Insight: Andrus is 7-for-30 (.233) with two RBIs and a .550 OPS in his career against Vargas. Combined with his September swoon, Sunday's unfavorable matchup should be avoided.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler is 10-for-28 (.357) with four doubles, one homer and three RBIs against Seattle's Jason Vargas.
Insight: In just nine less games than last season, Kinsler has 14 less homers, 23 less runs scored, nine less steals, 36 less walks and an OPS 71 points lower. Still, he's one of the better second base options in fantasy and Sunday will present a favorable matchup so make sure he's in your lineup.
Description: Texas catcher Mike Napoli is batting .333 with two homers and five RBIs in five games since returning from the DL and he has a favorable matchup Sunday against Jason Vargas so make sure you start him.
Insight: Napoli has gone 10-for-30 with three round-trippers and five RBIs against Vargas so he should be able to continue his hot streak Sunday.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler is 4-for-6 with a pair of solo homers against Seattle starter Hisashi Iwakuma.
Insight: Kinsler will likely not reach his 2011 season totals for runs scored, homers or stolen bases. He's still a solid fantasy option, but not the star he has been in past seasons. Friday, however, is a favorable matchup.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton could make his return from a sinus infection Thursday against Los Angeles, but even if he does, we're not counting on him to produce anything fantasy-worthy. He's hitless in 16 at bats against Angels starter Zack Greinke.
Insight: Seven of those 16 at bats ended with strikeouts. It's not a good idea to start Hamilton on Thursday.
Description: Intestinal issues will prevent Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre from suiting up Wednesday night against the Angels.
Insight: Beltre (.316) is just seven RBI shy of completing his third consecutive 100-RBI season. With Beltre sidelined, Michael Young (.274, 7 HR, 62 RBI) will be the starting third baseman for tonight's game.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre has been a beast against Seattle starter Blake Beavan. He enters Sunday's game with a .455 lifetime batting average in 11 encounters with the Mariners righthander.
Insight: Beltre has had a magnificent season for the Rangers, producing 32 homers and a .318 average in 141 games. Look for him to blow up Sunday with Beavan (9-9, 5.01 ERA) on the mound.
Description: Texas outfielder David Murphy is a fantasy must-start Sunday against Seattle's Blake Beavan. He's hitting .417 versus Beavan in 12 previous at bats.
Insight: Josh Hamilton and Adrian Beltre get most of the attention but Murphy has been just as dangerous for the Rangers in 2012 (.313, 13 HR, 55 RBI). Expect him to have another strong game on Sunday.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler is a career .385 hitter (10-for-26) against Seattle starter Jason Vargas.
Insight: Kinsler has not been able to match last season's production but he's still putting up solid numbers for a second baseman (.267, 17 HR, 69 RBI, 21 SB). He should be started on Saturday with this favorable matchup.
Description: Updating an earlier report, Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre is in the lineup Thursday. According to Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas, Beltre wasn't in the original lineup but he talked manager Ron Washington into starting him.
Insight: Beltre's MRI revealed some inflammation in his shoulder but he had no structural damage.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre will have an MRI on his injured left shoulder.
Insight: The Rangers are calling this a precautionary measure, so we're guessing the MRI comes back clean. If that's the case, Beltre (.318, 32 HR, 92 RBI) could be back in the lineup for the start of this weekend's series versus Seattle.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton left Wednesday's game early because of soreness in his left knee.
Insight: Craig Gentry (.307, 1 HR, 26 RBI) took over in center field upon Hamilton's departure in the seventh inning. Hamilton, who smacked his 41st home run of the season in Wednesday's 5-2 win over Cleveland, is doubtful for tonight's series finale in Arlington.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre left Wednesday's game with a left shoulder strain.
Insight: Beltre hurt his shoulder diving for a ball in the second inning, according to Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas. The Rangers will continue to evaluate their third baseman, who came into Wednesday hitting .397 with 12 homers, 22 RBIs and a 1.407 OPS in his last 19 games.
Description: Texas center fielder Josh Hamilton is hitless in six at-bats against 24-year-old Jeanmar Gomez. He's struck out in half his at-bats.
Insight: Hamilton leads the league with 40 HR and 119 RBI, but his post All-Star break production has been mediocre at best. He's batting .252 with an .811 OPS after the break versus .308 and 1.016 before the break. This matchup is unfavorable.
Description: Texas Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz is 0-for-9 against Cleveland starter Ubaldo Jimenez with seven strikeouts.
Insight: Cruz (.256, 21 HR, 81 RBI) still has some power, but we've seen it steadily decline over the past few seasons. He's struggling, batting .171 over the past two weeks, and since he rarely gets his bat on the ball against Jimenez, this isn't likely the day he breaks out of the slump. Sit him.
Description: Rangers catcher Mike Napoli (quad) will start a rehab assignment Tuesday, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Napoli will play three games before returning from the 15-day DL. The injury has only compounded what has been a disappointing season for the Rangers catcher. In 92 games, Napoli has hit 97 points lower than last season while hitting 13 less homers, driving in 35 less runs and striking out 23 more times in 21 less games than last season.
Description: Rangers starter Roy Oswalt is questionable for his next scheduled start with a sore right elbow.
Insight: Oswalt lasted just two innings on Sunday, yielding six hits and four runs to the Rays. He hasn't pitched very well this season with a 6.29 ERA and 1.58 WHIP so his absence shouldn't cause problems for fantasy owners.
Description: Rangers left fielder David Murphy has produced a stellar .314 average in 125 games this season but he's not the guy you want to start Sunday against James Shields. He's struggled to a .167 average against the Rays ace in 18 previous at bats.
Insight: Murphy produced a torrid 11-for-19 stretch earlier in the month but since then he's just two for his last 18.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton has struggled in the past against Royals righthander Luke Hochevar. In 11 previous meetings, Hamilton has connected on only two hits versus the Kansas City starter.
Insight: It's always difficult to sit Hamilton (.292, 38 HR, 114 RBI) but today is one of the rare instances where playing him might actually do your fantasy team more harm than good.
Description: Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler had two hits in Wednesday night's game but he's unlikely to repeat that effort on Thursday. He comes into today's matchup hitless in 11 career at bats versus Royals starter Luke Hochevar.
Insight: Kinsler has underachieved this season (.267, 16 HR, 67 RBI) and isn't likely to produce much of anything with Hochevar toeing the rubber for Kansas City on Thursday.
Description: If Rangers utility man Michael Young is on your fantasy team, Thursday would be the day to start him. He's batting .500 in 10 lifetime at bats against Royals starter Luke Hochevar.
Insight: At age 35, Young isn't the dominant fantasy commodity that he used to be, though his positional flexibility is certainly a plus and he's been known to hit well against lefties (.319 in 141 at bats this season). Hochevar hasn't been anything special this year (7-13, 5.34 ERA) so it's definitely safe to plug Young (.267, 6 HR, 57 RBI) into your starting lineup Thursday for the series finale.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre slammed another home run into the seats Wednesday in a 7-6 win over the Royals.
Insight: He's hitting an unbelievable .461 during his current six-game hitting streak with four jacks and seven RBI during that span. Beltre might be the hottest hitter in the game right now. Continue to start him with confidence.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton struggles against Rays right-hander James Shields, batting .158 (3-for-19), with seven strikeouts.
Insight: Hamilton was the best hitter in baseball for April and May, but posted sub par results in June and July. He rebounded in August by batting .308 with six homers and 27 RBI in 26 games, but this is an unfavorable matchup to be avoided.
Description: Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus is a stunning 10-for-16 (.625) with four extra base hits against Tampa Bay ace James Shields.
Insight: Andrus has been solid this season, though running less than in the past two years with just 19 stolen bases. He's improved in other areas, however, matching his career high with 35 extra base hits and batting .298.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre had a blast Wednesday against Baltimore. Three of them, to be exact. Beltre left the yard three times and drove in five runs in five at-bats Wednesday.
Insight: It was a surprising outburst from a player who had just one homer in his last 29 games. Hopefully this is a sign that Beltre's bat is waking up after he hit .258 in July and started off 20-for-75 (.267) in August.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish canceled a scheduled media session Tuesday due to a right leg issue, according to the Dallas Morning News.
Insight: Darvish stopped his throwing session Tuesday several times to stretch his right leg. He threw 40 pitches overall but didn't do his usual post-workout running. Darvish is scheduled to start Thursday's game against Minnesota, and that hasn't changed at this time.
Description: Rangers starter Ryan Dempster returned from the restricted list Monday and shut down the Orioles over eight innings to pick up his second victory with the team.
Insight: Dempster allowed a run in the first inning but then fired seven scoreless to finish with a four-hitter in eight innings (2 BB, 6 K). As we said last week, Dempster's schedule is extremely easy down the stretch and should allow him to get back on track; in his final seven starts, he'll face Minnesota, Cleveland twice, Kansas City, Seattle twice and Oakland.
Description: Texas righthander Ryan Dempster has been activated from the restricted list. He'll start Monday night's game against the Orioles.
Insight: Dempster missed his scheduled start Saturday against the Blue Jays because he couldn't find his passport. He's 1-1 with an 8.31 ERA since moving over to the American League at the trade deadline.
Description: According to the Fort-Worth Star Telegram, Rangers starter Ryan Dempster is expected to start Monday against Baltimore.
Insight: Dempster was scratched from his start Saturday after he was placed on the restricted list due to unidentified "personal reasons." Though Dempster has allowed 16 earned in three AL starts, his performance should improve as he faces an easy schedule in his final eight starts: BAL, MIN, CLE, KC, CLE, SEA, SEA, OAK.
Description: With Ryan Dempster sidelined for personal reasons, Texas righthander Roy Oswalt will get the start Saturday against Toronto.
Insight: Oswalt certainly wasn't thrilled when manager Ron Washington demoted him to the bullpen at the end of last month so this should come as good news for the 34-year-old. It's not good news for fantasy owners however as Oswalt has been brutal over his last four starts (1-2, 7.77 ERA).
Description: According to Adam Berry of MLB.com, Rangers starter Ryan Dempster has been placed on the restricted list for personal reasons.
Insight: Dempster has allowed 16 earned runs in 17 1/3 innings since joining the Rangers at the trade deadline after giving up just 26 earned in 104 innings as a member of the Cubs. Roy Oswalt is expected to take his spot in the rotation on Saturday.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy had three hits and two RBIs Thursday against the Yankees to raise his average to an even .300.
Insight: Murphy is a platoon player, but he actually has 17 hits in 44 at-bats (.372) against lefties this season, including an RBI double off Boone Logan in the seventh inning Thursday. The outfielder is hitting .286 with 10 homers against right-handers. Consider him a solid OF4 in 12-team leagues.
Description: Texas right fielder Nelson Cruz will not appear in the starting lineup Thursday afternoon against the Yankees.
Insight: Cruz had been battling a sore back earlier in the week, though that hasn't been listed as the official reason for his absence from the lineup on Thursday. The fact that Cruz (.265, 18 HR, 70 RBI) is now hitless in his last eight at bats may have also factored into manager Ron Washington's decision to sit him in the series finale.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton established a new career-high in homers by stroking a pair of jacks Wednesday night in his team's 3-2 loss to the Yankees.
Insight: After subpar months in June and July, Hamilton has started to amp things up again in August. He's now gone deep five times in his last seven games with 10 RBI over that span. Hamilton now trails Detroit third baseman Miguel Cabrera by two for the major league lead in RBI (103).
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler has just one career hit against Yankees starter Freddy Garcia in 13 official at-bats.
Insight: Kinsler is not hitting the long ball as he did in 2011 when he smacked 32 homers, but he's still a decent fantasy contributor with 82 runs, 13 HR, 55 RBI and 20 stolen bases. Wednesday, however, is an unfavorable matchup.
Description: Rangers catcher Mike Napoli (quad) suggested that he has not been healthy all season, according to the team's official website. Napoli sprained his left ankle in the World Series last year and was still being bothered by it in spring training, and he started having trouble with his left quad muscle before the ankle completely healed.
Insight: Perhaps that explains why Napoli, who looked like a mid-90s Mike Piazza in hitting 30 homers and batting .320 with a 1.046 OPS in 2011, has been so pedestrian this season. For those still holding out hope that Napoli will return to form when he comes off the DL, the catcher resumed hitting and did some leg exercises Tuesday. He's not expected back until September.
Description: Rangers starter Ryan Dempster allowed eight earned runs for the second time in three starts with the team Monday against the Yankees.
Insight: Dempster has allowed 16 earned runs in 17 1/3 innings since joining the Rangers at the trade deadline after giving up just 26 earned in 104 innings as a member of the Cubs. In fairness to Dempster, it's not going to get much more difficult than facing the Angels, Red Sox and Yankees in his first three American League starts. The right-hander will get Toronto, Minnesota, Tampa Bay and Kansas City in his next four starts if he stays on regular rest.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton has quietly put together a 10-game hitting streak while hitting three homers in his last four games. The slugger has 15 hits, two homers and 12 RBIs in 46 at-bats over his last 10 games.
Insight: Hamilton is 19-for-55 (.345) with four homers and 16 RBIs in his last 13 games. After a two-month slump, Hamilton could be ready to post huge numbers down the stretch.
Description: Though Rangers starter Yu Darvish tossed a quality start and picked up his 12th win of the season Sunday against Detroit, he walked five batters, the 17th time this season he has walked three-plus batters in a game.
Insight: Darvish has issued a league-high 79 walks in 140 2/3 innings this season, second in baseball to San Diego's Edinson Volquez.
Description: Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre enters Sunday's action with a .455 lifetime average versus Tigers righthander Rick Porcello.
Insight: Porcello (9-6, 4.62 ERA) has struggled against the Rangers as a whole throughout his career (8.47 ERA, .395 BAA in four starts) but Beltre (.304, 19 HR, 65 RBI) has been especially problematic for him.
Description: Rangers infielder Michael Young has a nice track record against Tigers starter Rick Porcello in 10 career at bats.
Insight: He's hitting .500 against the young righthander with three RBI. Young (.273, 3 HR, 45 RBI) is already hitting .317 this month and that average is likely to improve after facing Porcello (9-6, 4.62 ERA) on Sunday.
Description: Rangers starter Derek Holland turned in a superb outing Saturday against Detroit. Over seven and two thirds innings, the lefthander let in just one run on three hits. He walked one and matched a season-high with nine strikeouts.
Insight: Unfortunately 2011 Al Cy Young winner Justin Verlander pitched just as well for the Tigers (7 IP, 7 H, ER, 8 K's), so Holland was unable to add to his win total.
Description: Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz has just one hit in 12 career at bats against Detroit hurler Justin Verlander.
Insight: Cruz has started to ramp up his production with a solid July and an even better August in which he's batting .333 with three homers and a 1.077 OPS. He probably won't reach last year's totals, but at least he's improving. Saturday, however, likely won't be a big day.
Description: Texas Rangers right-hander Scott Feldman may only have a 6-6 record this season, but after losing six straight games in May and June, he's won six of seven starts (one no-decision) since June 19.
Insight: Feldman has yielded two runs or less in his last three starts with a 1.19 ERA and 0.93 WHIP. He's a must start on Friday, even against the likes of Miguel Cabrera (7-for-10 against Feldman) and Prince Fielder.
Description: Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus is just 2-for-15 (.133) against Detroit right-hander Max Scherzer.
Insight: Andrus doesn't offer any power but he is still one of the top shortstop options in fantasy baseball due to his contributions in batting average, runs and steals. Despite having just two homers he has still managed to post a .773 OPS with 64 runs scored and 18 stolen bases. Friday, however, is not a favorable matchup.
Description: Rangers catcher Yorvit Torrealba has been placed on waivers.
Insight: Texas designated Torrealba (.236, 3 HR, 12 RBI) for assignment last week after acquiring Geovany Soto from the Cubs at the trade deadline (.201, 7 HR, 18 RBI). It's unlikely Torrealba will be useful in fantasy when he finds a new team.
Description: Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz has just one hit in 14 career at bats against Boston starter Josh Beckett with six strikeouts.
Insight: Cruz struggled early to live up to his fantasy expectations, but over the past two weeks he's been the hitter we thought he was - batting .304 with four homers, 10 RBI and a 1.018 OPS in his last 12 games. This matchup, however, is unfavorable.
Description: Rangers starter Ryan Dempster's second start with Texas went much better than the first. The right-hander went into Fenway Park and shut down the Red Sox over 6 2/3 innings.
Insight: Dempster's night didn't start out well, as the Red Sox dented the Green Monster with three doubles and a single in the first four innings. However, the right-hander was able to hold Boston scoreless until the bottom of the seventh, when he served up a three-run homer to Will Middlebrooks following an error. All of the runs were unearned, so Dempster finished the night with zero earned runs on six hits, six strikeouts, one walk and his first victory with the Rangers.
Description: Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus (shoulder) is back in the starting lineup Tuesday.
Insight: Andrus doesn't offer any power but he is still one of the top shortstop options in fantasy baseball due to his contributions in batting average, runs and steals. Despite having just two homers he has still managed to post a .770 OPS because he's reached base at a .368 clip.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre is a .200 hitter (6-for-30) in his career against Boston hurler Josh Beckett with 10 strikeouts versus just six hits.
Insight: The switch was turned off for Beltre beginning in July. He batted .328 with 14 HR, 52 RBI and a .894 OPS before July 1 and .256 with five homers and 11 RBI in 30 games since then. This matchup isn't likely to help.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish's wildness has caught up with him as of late. The right-hander allowed six runs on 11 hits in 6 2/3 innings Monday at Boston. He walked four and struck out nine.
Insight: Darvish (11-8, 4.57 ERA) has a sky-high 1.46 WHIP due in large part to his 74 walks on the season. He's balanced out the free passes with 154 strikeouts in 134 innings, but he does more harm than good most of the time and may be wearing out as his innings build up.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre is a .462 hitter (6-for-13) in his career against Boston starter Aaron Cook.
Insight: Beltre was having an excellent season, but his numbers are fading since the Summer Classic. He's batting just .253 with a .728 OPS in 21 games since the break after hitting .326 with 15 HR, 54 RBI and a .881 OPS in his first 82 games.
Description: Texas shortstop Elvis Andrus came out of Sunday's game because of shoulder soreness.
Insight: He had been 2-for-5 with two RBIs before exiting and is now 11-for-25 (.444) in his last five appearances. This doesn't look like anything too serious, so expect Andrus (.296, 2 HR, 46 RBI) to be back in action Monday night in Boston.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler has struggled in his career against Royals starter Luke Hochevar, going 0-for-11. However, Kinsler is red hot and shouldn't be removed from the lineup Sunday.
Insight: Kinsler is 10-for-19 with two doubles, two homers, four RBIs, two walks and zero strikeouts in his last four games and is a must-start Sunday despite his poor numbers against Hochevar.
Description: Texas IF/DH Michael Young is having one of his worst pro seasons but he has had success against Royals starter Luke Hochevar in limited at-bats, going 5-for-7 (.714) with one triple, one homer and two walks.
Insight: Young's numbers have decline massively this season and he really shouldn't be owned in fantasy leagues. If you're holding onto the past with Young, Sunday would be a good day to get him in the lineup.
Description: Rangers top third base prospect Mike Olt had the first two RBIs on his major league career Saturday against the Royals.
Insight: Olt started against Royals lefty Will Smith Saturday and Angels lefty C.J. Wilson Thursday, going 2-for-5 against them. He'll continue to start against lefties, but the platoon split with Mitch Moreland will limit his fantasy value at first. AL-only owners should add the 23-year-old but mixed leaguers can hold off for now.
Description: According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the personal issue Josh Hamilton was referring to in an interview last week appears to be related to tobacco use.
Insight: Hamilton (.284, 29 HR, 88 RBI) has reportedly been having a tough time quitting chewing tobacco and it might be the reason why he struggled at the plate last month (.177, 4 HR, 11 RBI). Hamilton looked just fine against the Angels on Thursday however. He went 2-for-6 with a double and four RBIs.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre is just a .148 hitter (4-for-27) with one homer in his career against Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie.
Insight: Beltre was having an excellent season, but his numbers are fading since the Summer Classic. He's batting just .222 with a .662 OPS in 18 games since the break. Sit him on Friday if you have a viable option.
Description: Former Cubs starter Ryan Dempster found out how tough the American League can be in his Rangers debut Thursday against the Angels. The right-hander allowed more runs in his first Texas start than he did in his last seven starts with Chicago combined.
Insight: Pitching in 100-degree heat against a tough offense, Dempster wilted early and didn't make it out of the fifth inning. Dempster served up eight earned runs on nine hits, walked three and struck out six in 4 2/3 innings. Our concern is that this will become a regular occurence while Dempster gets used to the tougher league and more difficult home park.
Description: Rangers top third base prospect Mike Olt has been called up to the major leagues.
Insight: The former UConn star has been phenomenal in 95 games for Double-A Frisco this season (.288, 28 HRs, 82 RBIs). The 23-year-old has never played a game above Double-A ball and Adrian Beltre (.307, 18 HRs, 61 RBIs) is still among the best third baseman in baseball so it will be interesting to see what kind of role Olt will play upon his promotion.
Description: Sports Illustrated reports that Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton has been dealing with a non-physical issue that may have affected his play over the last month.
Insight: Hamilton (.283, 29 HRs, 84 RBIs) wasn't specific about what the issue is but he said that "I've been shown a lot of things over the past week" and that he would share with the media what the secret is "when the time is right." Hamilton has a pretty extensive history of off the field issues including multiple bouts with drug and alcohol abuse, so we'll have to wait to see what this is all about.
Description: Rangers prospect Mike Olt will start at first base and bat eighth in his major league debut Thursday against the Angels.
Insight: Olt hit 28 homers in 95 games for Double-A Frisco this season. He's the Rangers top third base prospect, but the presence of Adrian Beltre means Olt will have to be moved around. He could see time at first and DH, meaning less playing time for Mitch Moreland or Michael Young if Olt produces. He's worth a shot in AL-only and deeper mixed leagues if you need power from a corner infield position.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton has been restored to his normal spot in the lineup. He'll hit third Wednesday night against the Angels.
Insight: Hamilton (.281, 29 HRs, 84 RBIs) hit fifth for the Rangers in the first two games of the series, going 4-for-8 with a home run and double. Hamilton's bat has been dormant for much of the second half (.179 in 56 at bats) but he's a .302 career-hitter in August so look for his luck to change this month.
Description: Texas right-hander Roy Oswalt has been demoted to the bullpen, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Oswalt was shelled Monday after missing his previous start due to back stiffness. The right-hander has served up 10 or more hits in three of his six starts this season and 54 in 34 2/3 innings overall. He'll likely return to the rotation eventually, but he can be curbed in fantasy leagues.
Description: The Texas Rangers stepped in and acquired Ryan Dempster from the Chicago Cubs after the Dodgers backed out.
Insight: While Dempster will have a better offense behind him, moving to the American League and to Texas isn't exactly conducive to fantasy success. Rangers Ballpark in Arlington is the seventh best hitter's park in baseball with a run factor of 1.156, according to MLB Park Factors. Cliff Lee posted a 3.98 ERA in 108 2/3 innings with Texas after coming over from Seattle during the 2010 trade deadline (Lee had a 2.34 ERA in 103 2/3 innings with Seattle). Expect Dempster, who possesses a 2.25 ERA in 104 innings this season, to experience the same type of decline in Texas.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton had three hits, including his 29th homer, in four at-bats Monday against the Angels.
Insight: Hamilton came in just 7-for-33 with one homer against Angels starter Ervin Santana while also possessing a .188 average in his last 45 games, so Monday has to be considered a sign that he's starting to work things out at the plate.
Description: Texas right-hander Roy Oswalt (back) started for the first time since July 17 Monday against the Angels and was shelled. Oswalt allowed eight runs on 11 hits in 5 1/3 innings.
Insight: Oswalt missed his last start due to back stiffness. The right-hander has served up 10 or more hits in three of his six starts this season and 54 in 34 2/3 innings overall. His stuff is not sharp enough right now to trust him in fantasy leagues.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton is batting .188 with seven homers and 26 RBIs in his last 45 games.
Insight: Hamilton is still coasting off his excellent May. He's not likely to bust out Monday, as he hasn't performed well against Angels starter Ervin Santana in 33 career at-bats (7 H, 1 HR, 6 RBIs).
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler could be in line for a big night Monday against Angels starter Ervin Santana. Kinsler is 19-for-49 (.388) in his career against the right-hander.
Insight: Kinsler has underwhelmed in the power department and is taking less walks than last season, but he's still one of the more valuable players at his position due to his run scoring and stolen base prowess. Plus, he's kept his slugging percentage up by cranking 28 doubles and his OBP up by hitting 18 points higher than last season. Monday should be a solid night for the second baseman with Santana on the hill.
Description: Rangers righty Scott Feldman won his fifth straight decision in his 12th start of the season Sunday against the White Sox. Feldman shut out Chicago over eight innings (7 H, 0 BB, 5 K)
Insight: Feldman lost his first six decisions prior to his current upswing. The right-hander isn't really a good fantasy option outside of deeper AL-only leagues even though he has held opponents to one earned run in his last 17 innings. The Rangers are considering shifting Alexi Ogando back to the rotation so Feldman may not have a rotation spot much longer.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton is not listed in the starting lineup for Saturday's game against the White Sox.
Insight: Hamilton (.284, 28 HRs, 83 RBIs) was an MVP candidate about two months ago but now his bat has begun to fall on some hard times. The star outfielder is 1-for-19 (.053) at the dish over his last five games.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy won't be in the starting lineup Friday night against Chicago.
Insight: Texas has been using Craig Gentry (.339, 1 HRs, 22 RBIs) against lefthanded starting pitchers and that's the case again Friday as the Rangers face White Sox southpaw Chris Sale (11-3, 2.37 ERA).
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz is just 1-for-11 (.091) in his career against Boston right-hander Josh Beckett.
Insight: Cruz has played 93 of the team's 95 games, which is unusual for the injury-prone outfielder. Unfortunately, he's not producing at a high level with an OPS 63 points below his career average. Wednesday is not a favorable matchup and you should bench him.
Description: Slumping Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton may have just the medicine for his swing - Josh Beckett. Hamilton is a .471 career hitter (8-for-17) against Beckett with a pair of homers and a 1.350 OPS.
Insight: Even Texas Rangers owner Nolan Ryan is commenting on Hamilton's current struggles. He's batting just .203 since June 1. Perhaps today's favorable matchup will help.
Description: Rangers righthander Alexi Ogando wants to return to the starting rotation, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Ogando went 13-8 with a 3.51 ERA and 1.14 WHIP in 169 innings last season, so he would be someone to add in all formats if Texas decided to use him as a starter again. For now, the team will use Martin Perez in place of Colby Lewis (torn flexor tendon in his right elbow).
Description: Texas right-hander Roy Oswalt (back) will throw a bullpen session Friday in an attempt to make his scheduled start Sunday.
Insight: Oswalt has been dealing with some back stiffness that caused him to miss his last start. The right-hander has pitched well in three starts (18 1/3, 17 H, 3 ER) this season, but he's been knocked around the yard in the other two (10 2/3, 26 H, 14 ER). Still, with a solid 25/6 K/BB in 29 1/3 innings, Oswalt is worth owning in deeper leagues.
Description: Righthander Colby Lewis' elbow injury is worse than the Rangers originally thought. Lewis has a torn ligament in his pitching elbow and will now undergo season-ending surgery.
Insight: This could be the motivation Nolan Ryan and the Rangers need to make a push for a big-name starting pitcher before the trade deadline. Zack Greinke (9-3, 3.57 ERA) and Cole Hamels (11-4, 3.23) could both be possibilities for Texas.
Description: Texas starter Colby Lewis (forearm) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list, the team announced.
Insight: Lewis returned from the disabled list July 18 after missing three weeks with a strained forearm but he's headed back there with tendinitis in the same forearm. Martin Perez will be recalled from Triple-A Round Rock to start Tuesday.
Description: Texas starter Colby Lewis (forearm) didn't throw his scheduled bullpen session this weekend, leaving his status for Tuesday's start unknown, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Insight: Lewis returned from the disabled list July 18 after missing three weeks with a strained forearm but he'll likely be skipped Tuesday and may be placed back on the DL after meeting with a doctor.
Description: Texas righthander Roy Oswalt has been scratched from his scheduled start Monday against the Red Sox. Oswalt is dealing with tightness in his lower back.
Insight: Scott Feldman (3-6, 5.89 ERA) will make the start in Oswalt's place. Feldman hasn't appeared in a game for the Rangers since July 8 when he tossed two scoreless innings against the Twins in a 4-3 Texas victory.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler came in 18-for-47 (.384) in his career against Angels starter Ervin Santana, and though Santana lasted just 1 2/3 innings Saturday, Kinsler ended up going 2-for-5 with a double, a homer and three RBIs on the day.
Insight: Kinsler has 11 homers in 91 games after blasting 32 in 155 last season, but he's made up for it with 27 doubles. He should continue to post top-5 numbers at his position.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish has struck out 10-plus batters in four of his last six starts.
Insight: Darvish (11-6, 3.88 ERA) won Saturday for the first time since June 26, allowing two runs on three hits in seven innings against the Angels. He walked four again, however, and now has 61 walks against 132 strikeouts in 116 innings this season.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler is 18-for-47 (.383) against Angels veteran starter Ervin Santana with a 1.038 OPS.
Insight: Kinsler is just 2-for-15 this week so this favorable matchup comes when he and his fantasy owners need it to warm his cold bat. Kinsler's batting average has dropped every month this season to it's current .272 level. He is historically a better first-half hitter than second( .841 OPS vs. .780 OPS), so this doesn't bode well for the remainder of the season.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre is a career .208 hitter (11-for-53) versus Angels starter Jered Weaver with 12 strikeouts and just a lone home run.
Insight: Beltre is having a very good season batting .322 with 17 HR, 59 RBI and a .877 OPS although he did struggle a bit last week going just 4-for-16. This is an unfavorable matchup and you might look elsewhere for production.
Description: Rangers righthander Alexi Ogando will be activated from the DL for Tuesday night's game in Oakland. He's been out since early June with a strained right groin.
Insight: Ogando (1-0, 2.08 ERA) has made 28 appearances for Texas but only one of them has been as a starter and he's just one for three in save chances this season. Ogando is a terrific pitcher but unless his role changes for the Rangers, he's not worth owning in fantasy right now.
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz is hitless in eight career at-bats versus Oakland right-hander Bartolo Colon. He's struck out three times and walked once.
Insight: Cruz has played 87 of the team's 89 games, which is unusual for the injury-prone outfielder. Unfortunately, he's not producing at a high level with an OPS 71 points below his career average. Tuesday is not a favorable matchup and you should bench him.
Description: Texas catcher Mike Napoli will miss his second game in a row Sunday because of a quad injury. He isn't expected to return to the lineup until Tuesday night.
Insight: Even when Napoli (.225, 12 HRs, 30 RBIs) has been in the lineup lately, he hasn't been producing. Since the beginning of the month, the Rangers backstop is hitting just .095 with no homers or RBIs. You'd be wise to bench him until he figures out a different approach at the plate.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton has more strikeouts than hits (13-8) against Seattle ace Felix Hernandez. Hamilton is a career .178 hitter in the 53 times they have faced each other with just one home run and four RBI.
Insight: Hamilton (.307, 27 HR, 75 RBI) has been huge when healthy, but is dealing with back spasms that have hampered his swing. He's batting just .185 over the past eight games.
Description: Texas starter Colby Lewis (forearm) will throw a bullpen session Friday, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. He tossed his first bullpen session Saturday since he went on the DL in late June.
Insight: Lewis (6-6, 3.51) is on track to rejoin the Rangers' rotation in mid-July, likely for a start July 18 against Oakland.
Description: Rangers starter Derek Holland returned from the disabled list and tossed a quality start in a no decision Saturday against Minnesota.
Insight: Holland (5-4, 5.05 ERA) allowed three runs on six hits in six innings. Holland has been more consistent than his ERA indicates, as he allowed eight runs in one start. If you remove that outing, Holland's ERA drops to 4.16. Expect a solid second half from the Rangers lefty.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton is is doubtful for Saturday's game against Minnesota. He
left Friday night's game against Minnesota because of back spasms.
Insight: Hamilton (.314, 26 HR, 74 RBI) finished the night 0-for-2. Hopefully this won't be more than a weekend problem. With the All-Star break next week, he might be able to get enough treatment to be ready when the regular secons begins against next Thursday.
Description: According to Drew Davison of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Rangers starter Derek Holland (shoulder) will return to start a game during Texas' series with Minnesota over the weekend.
Insight: Holland (5-4, 5.10 ERA) will likely start Saturday against the Twins. Texas is skipping right-hander Yu Darvish's final start before the All-Star break so he can get some extra rest, setting up Martin Perez, Holland and Roy Oswalt to start in the Twins series.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy will take a seat on the bench Tuesday when Texas takes on the White Sox.
Insight: Murphy (.286, 9 HRs, 32 RBIs) actually hasn't started a game for the Rangers since Friday but when he's been in the lineup he's been productive. He's six for his last 10 at the plate with two homers and seven RBIs.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish was the tough-luck loser Sunday night against Oakland. Darvish allowed three runs on five hits, walked three and struck out 11 in seven innings but Texas was held to one run by Travis Blackley.
Insight: Darvish has recorded double digits in strikeouts in three of his last four starts and now has 117 punchouts in 102 2/3 innings. Darvish's strikeout potential is so great that fantasy owners are willing to overlook his high walk total and mediocre WHIP (1.36).
Description: Rangers starter Derek Holland (shoulder) allowed one run over three innings Wednesday in his first rehab start with Triple-A Round Rock. The left-hander may be able to return after one more rehab start, according to the Dallas Morning News.
Insight: Holland (5-4, 5.10 ERA) will pitch again Monday, which would allow him to return to the Rangers for a start next Saturday against the Twins.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler comes into Friday night's game against Oakland having collected eight hits in his last 14 at-bats, including two doubles and two homers.
Insight: Kinsler followed up an 0-for-11 streak earlier this month with four consecutive two-hit games, but he slipped back into a slump with two hits in 21 at-bats prior to his current hot streak. Hopefully he can extend his recent success longer than four games.
Description: Giving Texas catcher Mike Napoli the day off on Wednesday might be a good managerial move as he's 0-for-6 against Detroit starter Doug Fister.
Insight: Napoli is not producing as he did last year when he hit 30 HR, knocked in 75 and posted a stunning 1.046 OPS. A day off might help, plus backup Yorvit Torrealba is a .500 hitter against Fister (3-for-6).
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz is a career .500 hitter (7-for-14) versus Detroit starter Doug Fister with a 1.390 OPS.
Insight: Usually it's injuries that slow Cruz, but in 2012 it's worrisome that he has stayed healthy, yet hasn't produced as in the past. His batting average, slugging percentage and OPS are all well below career numbers. Time to explore trade options before other owners notice it too.
Description: Rangers right-hander Scott Feldman's demotion to the bullpen didn't last long. He'll start Thursday against Oakland in place of the injured Colby Lewis.
Insight: Lewis has been placed on the DL with forearm tendinitis, so Feldman will join the rotation. The right-hander is 1-6 with a 6.00 ERA and 1.48 WHIP this season, so stay away from him in fantasy leagues, even against the weak-hitting Athletics Thursday -- Feldman allowed eight runs in 1 2/3 innings in a start against Oakland on June 4.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy is a career .714 hitter (5-for-7) versus Detroit starter Rick Porcello with a home run and an OPS of 1.857.
Insight: Murphy has hit .308 for the past month, but his hot bat cooled last week when he batted just 1-for-9 over three games. It's hard to stay hot when you only play three games a week, but he has a favorable matchup on Monday.
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz went 3-for-5 with two homers and four RBIs Saturday against Colorado.
Insight: We'll continue to start Cruz despite his sub-.800 OPS because of his ability to put together tantilizing performances like this. However, if he doesn't start making efforts like this the norm instead of a nice surprise within the next 2-3 weeks, we would advise you to go in a different direction.
Description: Texas starter Colby Lewis was hit hard by Colorado Saturday, giving up eight runs (seven earned) on 11 hits in four innings.
Insight: Lewis had yielded two earned runs or less in four straight starts and also had a 2.91 ERA in six starts since he gave up 19 runs (14 earned) in a three start stretch from May 4-15. Expect Lewis to bounce back his next time out.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton is just 2-for-10 against Colorado starter Josh Outman without a home run and five strikeouts.
Insight: Hamilton is batting just .231 without a long ball in his last eight games. He still leads the league in RBI (64), slugging percentage (.665), OPS (1.052) and total bases (163), which just goes to show how good he has been this season. The respiratory illness that sidelined him for three days recently seems to have knocked him out of sync.
Description: Texas catcher Mike Napoli went 1-for-3 with a solo homer Friday against the Rockies.
Insight: Napoli (.236, 12 HR) came in working on a 2-for-29 slump. Hopefully he's got another massive second half run in him like he went on last season, because Napoli has been a huge disappointment to this point.
Description: Rangers starter Roy Oswalt returned to the big leagues in style Friday, holding Colorado to one run on nine hits in 6 2/3 innings to pick up his first win since Sept. 27, 2011.
Insight: Oswalt stats weren't great down in the minor leagues (1-1, 5.87 ERA), but he was likely just working on building his arm up. He had good command Friday, walking just one and striking out six. He's definitely worth owning in mixed leagues, but don't get too excited, as Friday's start came against a Rockies lineup without Troy Tulowitzki and with just one batter hitting above .276.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish won for the ninth time in 14 starts Wednesday against the Padres. Darvish let in two runs on five hits in eight innings of work, walking three and striking out seven.
Insight: After going through a bit of a slump in late May and early June, Darvish has turned things around and pitched well during interleague. He's 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA and 19 strikeouts in his last two outings.
Description: With Roy Oswalt moving into the starting rotation this weekend, Rangers righthander Scott Feldman has been demoted to bullpen.
Insight: Feldman started the year in the pen before moving to the rotation in mid May when Neftali Feliz got injured. Since the move, Feldman is just 1-6 with a 6.43 ERA in eight starts. Now that he is back in a middle relief role, his fantasy value is very limited.
Description: Roy Oswalt is set to make his Texas Rangers debut Friday night at home against Colorado.
Insight: Oswalt stats weren't great down in the minor leagues (1-1, 5.87 ERA) but Nolan Ryan liked what he saw when he watched Oswalt pitch on Sunday. Oswalt will take Scott Feldman's spot in the Rangers' starting rotation.
Description: Texas first baseman Mitch Moreland is out for Wednesday's game against San Diego because of a left hamstring strain.
Insight: Moreland (.272, 10 HRs, 25 RBIs) left Tuesday night's game because of the injury and general manager Jon Daniels says he expects that Moreland will be placed on the disabled list some time in the next couple of days.
Description: Texas DH Michael Young is not in the lineup for the Rangers' game Tuesday night against San Diego.
Insight: Young (.270, 3 HRs, 27 RBIs) has been seeing most of the reps at first base during interleague play but Tuesday Mitch Moreland (.274, 10 HRs, 25 RBIs) will get a chance at first while the veteran Young takes the night off.
Description: The Rangers have released minor league outfielder Brad Hawpe.
Insight: Hawpe wanted to be released and Texas granted his request. The soon to be 33-year-old is now a free agent. Hawpe was an All-Star for the Rockies in 2009. This season for Double-A Frisco, he was hitting .260 with 3 HRs and 12 RBIs in 35 games.
Description: Texas first baseman Mitch Moreland won't start Monday night against the Padres.
Insight: We probably won't see much of Moreland (.276, 10 HRs, 25 RBIs) this series. Since interleague started, the Rangers have mostly opted to use Michael Young (.274, 3 HRs, 27 RBIs) at first base which leaves Moreland as the odd man out. He'll see more consistent playing time when interleague is over and Young moves back to DH.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton won't play Monday night against the Padres. Hamilton is still recovering from a virus.
Insight: Hamilton (.330, 22 HRs, 62 RBIs) was released from the hospital on Saturday and the hope was that he would be back in the lineup on Monday. The Texas center fielder might be available for Tuesday's game.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre is a career .438 batter (7-for-16) versus Padres starter Jason Marquis with a 1.188 OPS.
Insight: Beltre homered on Sunday, his first since May 27. That's not to say he hasn't been hitting well, he's actually batting .327 over the past two weeks and has four consecutive multi-hit games, just not for much power.
Description: Texas starter Colby Lewis held Houston to one run on three hits in seven innings Sunday to improve to 6-5. He walked one and struck out 10.
Insight: Lewis has allowed just 13 hits and four runs in 24 innings over his last three starts. He's cut his walk rate by more than one per nine innings this season, and should be a solid option for the rest of the season.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy is not in the starting lineup for Sunday's game against the Astros.
Insight: Though he won't be in the lineup Sunday, Murphy has hit .474 (9-19) with two homers and six RBIs over his last five games. Who knows how long Murphy can stay hot for, but he could be a nice fantasy pickup and it probably wouldn't cost you anything: he's available in almost 93 percent of fantasy leagues right now.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton was released from the hospital on Saturday. Hamilton has been dealing with an intestinal virus. He's expected to return to the Texas starting lineup Monday night against the Padres.
Insight: Hamilton is hitting just .196 this month with one homer and five RBIs. In May, he hit .344 with 12 HRs and 32 RBIs.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish struck out 11 Astros in eight innings Friday. Darvish held Houston to two runs on seven hits with two walks to improve to 8-4.
Insight: The fatigued Darvish (8-4, 3.57 ERA) clearly benefitted from a couple of extra days of rest between starts after he went 1-3 with a 6.53 ERA in his previous four turns. Despite his 46 walks, Darvish's strikeout potential (9.8 K/9) makes him a must-start against all opponents.
Description: Rangers starter Neftali Feliz (elbow) has been cleared by a team physician to begin throwing Monday. He's been on the DL with a sprained elbow ligament since mid-May.
Insight: Feliz will throw off flat ground, but he's not expected back anytime soon. The Rangers will move him to the 60-day DL Saturday. Even when he does return, Feliz is expected to move to the bullpen, so unless the team decides to replace current closer Joe Nathan, Feliz won't have much mixed league value.
Description: Texas catcher Mike Napoli is getting an off day Friday. Yorvit Torrealba will start behind the plate.
Insight: Napoli has fallen right back into a funk after a brief hot stretch in early June. In his past three games, the catcher has gone 0-for-10. Owners who drafted Napoli high can't be too satisfied with his .246 average. Hopefully he can repeat his 2011 second half performance (.383, 18 HR, 42 RBI).
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish admitted to feeling some fatigue lately. Darvish used to get five days of rest while pitching in Japan, but gets only four days between starts with the Rangers.
Insight: Darvish is 0-2 with a 6.17 ERA and 1.800 WHIP in two June starts, but will have had seven days rest since losing 7-1 to Oakland. If he shows up strong tonight then we might have the answer to his recent struggles.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton still has outstanding season-long numbers (.330, 22 HR, 62 RBI), but he's batting just .191 over the past two weeks with a single long ball and five RBI.
Insight: No sane fantasy player would take the first-half MVP put of their lineup, but simply temper your expectations until his next hot streak. Perhaps the upper respiratory infection he suffered in late May could be part of the cause, but it shouldn't be long-lasting.
Description: Rangers outfielder David Murphy had a homer and two RBIs Thursday against Arizona.
Insight: Murphy has hit one out in each of the last two games after not hitting one since May 20. He's not someone to own in mixed leagues but you could do worse in AL-only leagues. He gets on base and gets a lot of playing time in baseball's best lineup.
Description: Rangers reliever Koji Uehara is headed to the disabled list with a strained right lat muscle.
Insight: Uehara has posted a 2.11 ERA and 22 strikeouts in 21 1/3 innings this season, making him an attractive target in deeper mixed leagues with an innings cap or leagues that use holds as a category.
Description: Rangers first baseman Mitch Moreland will take a seat for Wednesday night's game in Arizona.
Insight: We were expecting Moreland (.283, 9 HRs, 23 RBIs) to see fewer at bats in interleague so this doesn't come as much of a surprise. He'll probably be back in there Thursday in the series finale.
Description: Texas starter Colby Lewis went the distance Tuesday against Arizona. Lewis allowed one run on four hits in nine innings to improve to 5-5. He walked one and struck out seven.
Insight: Lewis lost his last two starts despite allowing just four runs in 14 2/3 innings. The right-hander lowered his ERA to 3.13 and his WHIP to a career-low 1.03 Tuesday. A major factor of Lewis' success has been his improved control this season. He's walked only 11 batters in 89 innings.
Description: According to the Dallas Morning News, Rangers manager Ron Washington wants reliever Robbie Ross to stay in the bullpen.
Insight: Texas needs a starter with Alexi Ogando (groin) heading to the disabled list for 4-6 weeks and Derek Holland not yet ready to come off the DL. However, Washington thinks Ross has been too effective in relief to use him as a starter. This season, the lefty has gone 6-0 with a 1.30 ERA, 0.92 WHIP and 22 strikeouts in 34 2/3 ininngs. He threw four shutout innings of one-hit ball Sunday in relief of Ogando.
Description: Rangers starter Derek Holland (shoulder) is regaining his strength after losing 15 pounds due to a stomach virus. Holland has already put on four pounds since going on the disabled list last week, according to Fox Sports Southwest.
Insight: Holland (5-4, 5.10 ERA) is hoping to return to the team when he's eligible to come off the DL June 21. He hasn't started throwing yet, and Rangers manager Ron Washington thinks Holland will need a rehab start.
Description: Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton leads all players in All-Star voting.
Insight: At .338 with 22 HRs and 61 RBIs through 57 games, there's nobody more deserving of this honor than Hamilton. The Texas centerfielder's production has dipped a little since his four homer game last month: he's hitting only .200 with one home run in the month of June.
Description: Texas utility player Michael Young will sit out the Rangers' series finale Sunday against San Francisco.
Insight: Young, who has started at first base the past two games, will step aside to give Mitch Moreland (.277, 9 HRs, 21 RBIs) a turn in the lineup. Young (.283, 3 HRs, 24 RBIs) is usually the Rangers' DH but this weekend the team is playing in a National League park so the designated hitter position is not an option.
Description: Rangers starter Roy Oswalt allowed five runs on six hits in four innings in his second start for Triple-A Round Rock Thursday. Oswalt walked one and struck out four.
Insight: Oswalt was greeted by a grand slam from Royals super prospect Wil Myers. He's likely just trying to build up his arm strength and command after a long layoff, so don't be deterred much by these results.
Description: Texas' Michael Young is a career .303 hitter, but he's a .232 hitter (19-for-82) versus Giants starter Barry Zito.
Insight: Young is still struggling to play up to fantasy expectations, batting .284 with a low .685 OPS. As a fantasy second baseman, his numbers are satisfactory, but not if you are playing him at first base, third base, outfield or designated hitter.
Description: Rangers starter Yu Darvish allowed six runs in 5 1/3 innings Thursday against Oakland.
Insight: Darvish (7-4) started against a lineup that featured Jemile Weeks (.224), Coco Crisp (.169), Brandon Inge (.191), Brandon Moss (.167), Kurt Suzuki (.207) and Cliff Pennington (.196), so we were expecting a better effort. The right-hander once again struggled with his control, walking six batters to raise his season total to 44. Frankly, Darvish is very lucky to have seven wins and a 3.84 ERA despite his 1.51 WHIP.
Description: Texas first baseman Mitch Moreland is a must-start on Thursday. He's a .385 career hitter in 13 at bats against Oakland starter Brandon McCarthy.
Insight: Three of Moreland's five hits off McCarthy have gone for extra bases including a pair of homers. Moreland has been on a bit of a cold streak (1-23 in his last nine games) but facing McCarthy should start to warm him up again.
Description: Texas righty Alexi Ogando will move into the starting rotation while Derek Holland is on the DL with shoulder fatigue. He'll start on Sunday against San Francisco.
Insight: Ogando actually made the AL All-Star team as a starter last season, so he has plenty of experience in this role. He's been terrific as a reliever this year (1-0, 2.27 ERA, eight holds) but he holds much more fantasy value as a starter.
Description: Derek Holland has been placed on the 15-day DL with a sore left shoulder.
Insight: Holland (5-4, 5.10 ERA) lost almost 15 pounds while battling an illness last month and it's clear that his strength isn't where it needs to be right now. Consider this DL stint more of a rest period for Holland than a true injury. Holland should be fine to pitch again as soon as he is eligible to come off the disabled list.
Description: Rangers manager Ron Washington dispelled rumors that Texas was going to accelerate the timetable set for starter Roy Oswalt. Washington said Oswalt will not replace Scott Feldman in the rotation Saturday.
Insight: Oswalt has three more minor league outings scheduled before he'll make his 2012 debut.
Description: Newly acquired starting pitcher Roy Oswalt tossed a couple of scoreless innings Saturday in his first start for Triple-A Round Rock. It was Oswalt's first professional baseball appearance since last October.
Insight: Oswalt was definitely a little rusty (he gave up three hits and a walk) but he'll have at least three more starts to dust off the cobwebs before the Rangers call him up to the majors. Last year, Oswalt was 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA in 23 starts for Philadelphia.
Description: Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre has dominated Angels starter Dan Haren in the past. In 53 career at bats against the Los Angeles righthander, he's batting .453 with 3 HRs and 11 RBIs.
Insight: Beltre (.316, 10 HRs, 35 RBIs) was hitless on Saturday but prior to that he had been on a 10-game hitting streak. Look for the 33-year old third baseman to begin a new hitting streak Sunday versus Haren.
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz is 5-for-6 with a pair of homers and six RBIs against Angels starter Jerome Williams.
Insight: Cruz' OPS is still just .754, below his career .826 average but he has the potential to build up fantasy points in a hurry. As long as he is healthy, he's worth starting, particularly in today's favorable matchup.
Description: Texas second baseman Ian Kinsler is a career .125 batter against Seattle starter Blake Beavan.
Insight: Kinsler is one of four key Rangers hitters, along with Josh Hamilton, Michael Young and Nelson Cruz who is batting under .200 against Beavan. It doesn't bode well for a lot of Texas production on Wednesday.
Description: Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton is just 1-for-9 (.111) against Blake Beavan.
Insight: Hamilton has been the best hitter in baseball over the first two months, batting .365 with a league-leading 21 HR, 56 RBI, .758 slugging percentage and 1.177 OPS. As hot as he is, he may be able to overcome this bad matchup.
Description: Texas' Michael Young may be a career .303 hitter, but he's 0-for-9 against Seattle starter Blake Beavan.
Insight: Young hasn't hit up to expectations yet, batting just .277 with a subpar .675 OPS, but over the past week has hit at a .364 clip and may be ready to break out. Wednesday's matchup, however, is not a good one.
Description: Outfielder Josh Hamilton is probable for Monday's game. An upper respiratory infection was cited as the reason why Josh Hamilton didn't play in Monday night's game against Seattle.
Insight: Hamilton was given an IV and oxygen after Saturday's win against Toronto (he hit the game-winning home run) but he was able to play Sunday in the series finale. He's been one of the best hitters in baseball this season batting .368 with 20 HR and 53 RBI, so fantasy owners can't survive without him out of the lineup for long.
Description: Yu Darvish's stiff back doesn't appear to be a serious issue. Manager Ron Washington says Darvish should be able to make his scheduled start on Saturday against Los Angeles.
Insight: Darvish left his last start after just five innings but it doesn't look like the injury will affect him going forward. Darvish gave up three runs, three hits and three walks over 5.1 innings in his only start against the Angels this season back on May 11th.
Description: An upper respiratory infection has been cited as the reason why Josh Hamilton won't be participating in Monday night's game against Seattle.
Insight: Hamilton was given an IV and oxygen after Saturday's win against Toronto (he hit the game-winning home run) but he was able to play Sunday in the series finale. We'd expect Hamilton to be back in the lineup on Tuesday.
Description: Ian Kinsler chipped in with a double and a home run Sunday in Texas' 12-6 win over Toronto.
Insight: Kinsler (.289, 6 HRs, 22 RBIs) has recorded multi-hit games in each of his last four outings and in five out of his last six. That's impressive production for a second baseman but then again, who doesn't hit well in Texas?
Description: Yu Darvish was taken out after putting in just five innings of work Sunday in a win over the Blue Jays. Darvish was feeling some stiffness in his back.
Insight: After a phenomenal April (4-0, 2.18 ERA), Darvish has been merely average in the month of May (3-2, 4.50). This injury doesn't appear to be serious enough for Darvish to miss his next start Saturday against the Angels.
Description: Alexi Ogando left Sunday's game against Toronto after being struck on the right hand by a line drive. X-rays on Ogando's hand came back negative, so he's day-to-day.
Insight: Ogando has had a phenomenal season working out of the Texas bullpen (1.65 ERA in 22 appearances) but he isn't worth holding onto in fantasy. Ogando isn't being used as a starter or a closer right now and he only has six holds.
Description: Mitch Moreland collected three hits Saturday in the Rangers' 8-7 extra innings win over the Blue Jays including a solo home run, his eighth of the season.
Insight: Moreland has been crushing Toronto in this series. He's now 6-9 with 1 HR and 3 RBIs in his past two games. For the season, his average is up to .309, well above his career average of just .263.
Description: Nelson Cruz went 4-for-5 with a homer and eight RBIs against the Blue Jays on Friday.
Insight: This is the kind of game Cruz owners have been waiting for. Even with Friday's big game, Cruz' OPS is still just .749, but it's these types of performances that keep fantasy owners' hopes alive that Cruz will revert to his 2011 form.
Description: Neftali Feliz said he wants to remain in the starting rotation when he returns from his elbow injury, Tim McMahon of ESPN Dallas reports. However, Rangers manager Ron Washington said it's premature to discuss whether Feliz should remain a starter or go back to the bullpen.
Insight: McMahon said the decision could be heavily influenced by the Rangers' pursuit of Roy Oswalt. Feliz is still weeks away from picking up a baseball. The 24-year-old righty is 3-1 with a 3.16 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 42 2/3 innings this season, his first as a starting pitcher.
Description: Texas catcher Mike Napoli will not start on Friday night due to an illness.
Insight: Napoli has just two hits in 14 career at-bats against Toronto starter Brandon Morrow, so Friday wasn't going to be a good matchup for him anyway. Napoli went 10-for-23 with six home runs during a five-game stretch from April 15-21. In the other 35 games this season, Napoli has a .191 batting average (21-for-110) with one home run. He's also in a midst of a 3-for-26 slump.
Description: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz has struggled to hit Toronto pitcher Brandon Morrow, going 1-for-13 (.077) with six strikeouts.
Insight: Cruz only has four home runs this year after knocking 29 out of the park last season in 124 games, so this is not a good trend. He is a better second-half hitter than first (.853 OPS vs. .796), so you should continue to show patience. Sit him today.