Description: Fernando Rodney's nightmare season continued Saturday against New York.
Insight: Saturday was Rodney's fifth blown save of the season. He's now blown three out of his last five save opportunities with a miserable 13.50 ERA over that span. Manager Joe Maddon may want to consider using Joel Peralta in the ninth inning if Rodney's struggles continue.
Description: Chris Carpenter felt sore after his latest bullpen session. SOURCE: Jenifer Langosch, MLB.com
Insight: The veteran starter has been trying to come back from a shoulder injury that cost him almost all of last season. The expectation was that Carpenter would be back in the Cardinals' rotation sometime in the next month but now that timetable will probably have to be pushed back.
Description: Pittsburgh third baseman Pedro Alvarez cranked two homers Saturday in a win over the Brewers.
Insight: Alvarez is doing what he always does: striking out a ton and hitting lots of homers. In 146 at bats, the 26-year-old has racked up 51 K's and 10 long balls. Fantasy owners can expect more of the same Sunday in the series finale.
Description: Twins catcher Joe Mauer crushed his third home run of the season Saturday in a win against the Tigers.
Insight: Mauer (.347, 3 HR, 15 RBI) had an 0-for-8 stretch earlier in the week but since then he's gone 8-for-17 with two RBI. Only Joey Votto (.355) and Miguel Cabrera (.385) are hitting for a higher average this season.
Description: Boston shortstop Jose Iglesias contributed three hits Saturday against Cleveland.
Insight: This just doesn't make sense. Iglesias has been excellent in the majors (.481 in eight games) despite a .202 average in 119 at bats in the minors this season. Either way, it looks like he's going to be playing a lot of third base while Will Middlebrooks is sidelined with a back injury.
Description: The Red Sox recalled infielder Jose Iglesias on Friday.
Insight: The Sox placed Will Middlebrooks and Shane Victorino on the DL, which opened up a roster spot for Iglesias. He started at third base on Friday and is playing shortstop today against the Indians.
Description: Reds shortstop Zack Cozart is just 1-for-10 against Cubs starter Travis Wood.
Insight: Cozart isn't hitting for average, but he does have five home runs, 20 RBI and 23 runs scored which makes him a viable low end fantast shortstop. Just not on Saturday in this unfavorable matchup.
Description: Reds right fielder Jay Bruce is not longer in a hot streak, batting just .211 over his last five games, but is 2-for-5 with a pair of home runs in his matchups with Cubs starter Travis Wood.
Insight: Bruce is currently batting .273 six homers, 31 RBI and a .779 OPS. This matchup might get another streak going.
Description: Rockies right fielder Michael Cuddyer is just 2-for-14 versus Giants starter Barry Zito.
Insight: Cuddyer, who was just activated from the disabled list on Friday, is having a fine season, batting .325 with eight homers, 26 RBI and a .997 OPS in 32 games, including a home run last night. This matchup, however, has never been a good one for Cuddyer.
Description: Texas outfielder David Murphy is a career .303 hitter (20-for-66) with a pair of home runs against Seattle ace Felix Hernandez.
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 .223 with a .674 OPS, but this matchup might help his numbers.
Description: Mariners outfielder Michael Saunders is 0-for-9 versus Texas starter Derek Holland.
Insight: Saunders has played solidly when on the field (as per his past history he's already spent time on the DL). He has four homers, 13 RBI and 19 runs scored in 30 games. This matchup, however, is not favorable.
Description: Cleveland slugger Mark Reynolds is 5-for-15 (.333) with a home run against Boston lefty Jon Lester.
Insight: That's almost 100 points above his career batting average. More importantly, he's struck out just two times in 18 plate appearances, meaning he actually gets his bat on the ball. Start him despite his recent struggles.
Description: Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia is is an ugly 0-for-7 with six strikeouts against Indians' starter Scott Kazmir.
Insight: This would be a good day for him to watch David Ross from the bench, but if he plays you must make sure he's not in your fantasy lineup. His 46 strikeouts in 124 at-bats is a little concerning, but catchers with an .806 OPS are hard to come by.
Description: Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia "owns" Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir, batting a stunning .515 with a .610 OBP in 41 plate appearances.
Insight: Pedroia is having another excellent season, batting .333 with 34 runs scored, two homers, 24 RBI and eight steals. Despite the low home run total, fantasy owners are still getting their money's worth. He's a must start on Saturday.
Description: Orioles outfielder Adam Jones is 1-for-9 with three strikeouts against Toronto knuckleballer R.A, Dickey.
Insight: Jones (sore leg) returned to center field after starting three straight games at DH and went 2-for-5 with a solo homer. The leg injury didn't slow down his bat as he's hitting .308 over the past week. Just don't expect him to steal bases.
Description: Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista is a career .455 hitter (5-for-11) with a pair of home runs against Baltimore starter Freddy Garcia.
Insight: After another three hits on Friday, Bautista is batting .366 for the month of May with a 1.081 OPS. He's also been a much better hitter at home this year (.369). Add all the variables up and Bautista is a must start on Saturday.
Description: Brewers starter Marco Estrada tossed seven innings and allowed one run on four hits Friday against Pittsburgh. He didn't walk a batter and struck out eight.
Insight: Estrada allowed three hits and one earned in seven innings at Pittsburgh on May 13, but he followed it up by giving up seven hits and four runs at St. Louis his last time on the hill. We need to see the right-hander do it two times in a row before we can trust him again.
Description: Red Sox starter John Lackey allowed just two hits and one unearned run in a win over Cleveland Friday night. He has allowed three hits and two unearned runs in 13 innings over his last two starts.
Insight: Lackey walked three and struck out eight in seven innings. The right-hander has been very good in his return from Tommy John surgery, posting a 2.72 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP and striking out 40 batters in 39 2/3 innings.
Description: Brewers closer Jim Henderson exited Friday's game against the Pirates with what appeared to be a right hamstring injury. The Brewers turned to Francisco Rodriguez after the injury.
Insight: Henderson reached for a grounder up the middle and immediately grabbed the back of his right leg near the hamstring. He tried to stay in the game but came out after throwing a warmup pitch. The right-hander was one out away from getting his 10th save. This could be K-Rod's opening to return to the ninth inning.
Description: Pirates starter A.J. Burnett limited the Brewers to three hits and two earned runs, walked two and fanned six in seven innings Friday night.
Insight: Burnett allowed two hits and both runs in the bottom of the second but was nearly flawless in the final five innings. The right-hander has been dominant this year, allowing just 49 hits and 20 earned runs and striking out 85 batters in 70 innings.
Description: Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto raised his average to .361 with two hits Friday night. One of them was a solo homer.
Insight: Votto has hit four home runs in his last seven games and is hitting .511 over his last 12. Votto is starting to build up his counting stats to go with the elite batting average, OBP and slugging percentage.
Description: Orioles outfielder Adam Jones returned to center field after starting three straight games at DH and went 2-for-5 with a solo homer.
Insight: Jones has been dealing with soreness in his legs, so the team started him at DH to give him a rest while still having his bat in the lineup. The injury hasn't affected his bat at all, as he has homered in two straight games and four of the last 11.
Description: Baltimore first baseman Chris Davis has crushed seven homers over his last 14 games.
Insight: He went 3-for-4 with a solo shot Friday, the third straight game he has homered. The slugger has an AL-leading 16 homers and is hitting .337. His power might be the sole thing standing between Miguel Cabrera and a second straight Triple Crown.
Description: Yankees manager Joe Girardi expects right-hander David Phelps to have a bruised forearm. Phelps will have precautionary X-rays. SOURCE: Bryan Hoch, MLB.com
Insight: Phelps allowed four earned runs on six hits in 7 2/3 innings to win his third game of the season Friday night against the Rays but he had to leave in the eighth inning after being drilled by a line drive off the bat of Ben Zobrist.
Description: Yankees manager Joe Girardi said after Friday's game against the Rays that outfielder Curtis Granderson will miss a minimum of four weeks, according to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com. Granderson suffered a broken left pinky knuckle after being hit by a pitch Friday night.
Insight: Granderson was playing in just his eighth game since returning from a fractured forearm, which also was caused by a HBP.
Description: Tigers right-hander Anibal Sanchez came within two outs of his second no-hitter Friday night against the Twins. He allowed a line-drive single to center to Joe Mauer and settled for a one-hit shutout.
Insight: Sanchez walked three and struck out 12. He was coming off his worst start of the season, a nine-hit, six-run drubbing at Texas. The right-hander has been unreal this season, recording an 11.19 K/9, a 2.38 ERA and a 1.75 FIP.
Description: Blue Jays third baseman Brett Lawrie was tossed from Friday's game in the third inning after objecting to a called third strike.
Insight: Lawrie didn't appear to say anything but he slammed his helmet and was thrown out as he was walking away from the plate. It was nothing close to the scene Lawrie made last year, when he spiked his helmet and had it bounce off the home plate umpire. He was suspended for several games for that incident, but he won't miss any time due to this one.
Description: Yankees right-hander David Phelps was drilled in the right forearm in the eighth inning Friday against the Rays and had to leave the game.
Insight: The Yankees already lost Curtis Granderson to a broken pinky knuckle after he was hit on the hand during this game. Phelps allowed four earned runs on six hits in 7 2/3 innings and is headed for his third win of the year. He has been outstanding since joining New York's rotation.
Description: Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez says he feels ready to return from his hamstring injury already but the Dodgers won't let him, according to Pedro Moura of the Orange County Register.
Insight: Ramirez was placed on the disabled list with a strained left hamstring on May 4. He suffered the injury just four games after returning from the torn thumb ligament that cost him most of April. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said Ramirez will need 4-5 rehab games. He was given a 4-6 week timetable on May 4.
Description: Houston center fielder Justin Maxwell (hand) is expected to begin a minor league rehab assignment Wednesday, according to Brian McTaggart of MLB.com.
Insight: Maxwell suffered a broken left hand in the last week of April. He took 20 swings in the cage Thursday and should be back in early June. He'll return to a .234 average, one homer and 22 strikeouts in 77 at-bats.
Description: Twins third baseman Trevor Plouffe passed his concussion test Wednesday and did cardio Thursday with no issues, according to Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com.
Insight: Plouffe took a blow to the head while he was sliding into second base Tuesday night. He said he was placed on the 7-day disabled list due to his initial wooziness rather than an actual concussion.
Description: Cardinals starter Jake Westbrook (elbow) could have his rehab program dialed back after his elbow acted up during a throwing session Wednesday. SOURCE: St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Insight: Westbrook had his bullpen session shut down after just 20 pitches on Wednesday. The elbow injury isn't believed to be serious but his time on the DL will have to be extended into June. He did throw on flat ground Friday, according to Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com, but he's not on a specific throwing program right now.
Description: Padres left fielder Carlos Quentin (knee) is back in the lineup Friday.
Insight: The outfielder tweaked his knee on a slide at home plate Monday and received a cortisone shot Tuesday. The outfielder had knee surgery in the offseason and is hitting just .178 with four homers in 30 games.
Description: Yankees right-hander Ivan Nova (triceps, back, side) has been activated from the 15-day disabled list.
Insight: Nova was placed on the DL on April 27 with right triceps inflammation and he also tweaked his back and side while playing catch in mid-May. Nova is listed as a reliever Friday, and the team has no immediate plans to put him back in the rotation, according to Chad Jennings of LoHud.com. Vidal Nuno is still listed as the starter for Saturday.
Description: Rays manager Joe Maddon said the team has not even had discussions about removing Fernando Rodney from the closer role, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: After putting together one of the best seasons by a relief pitcher in major league history last year with 48 saves and a 0.60 ERA, Rodney already has blown four saves, allowed 11 earned runs and walked 17 batters in 18 1/3 innings. He blew two saves, allowed five earned runs and walked 15 batters in 74 2/3 innings last year. However, he remains the ninth-inning guy for the Rays.
Description: Washington second baseman Danny Espinosa has been playing with a bone chip and a small fracture in his right wrist for the last month. He'll take several days off to see if he feels better. SOURCE: Mark Zuckerman, CSNWashington.com
Insight: Espinosa (.163, 3 HR, 12 RBI) has just one hit in his last 17 at-bats and has a 40/4 K/BB this season. He suffered the injury when he was hit by a pitch on April 14. Espinosa also was diagnosed with a torn left rotator cuff in the offseason and opted to not have surgery.
Description: Rangers right-hander Nick Tepesch had no issues with the blister on his right middle finger during a bullpen session Thursday and has been confirmed as the scheduled starter for Sunday at Seattle. SOURCE: Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Insight: Tepesch is 3-4 with a 3.98 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP in 43 innings this season. He last started on May 17.
Description: Royals starter Felipe Paulino (elbow) is about three weeks behind Danny Duffy in his rehab from Tommy John surgery, according to Bob Dutton of the KC Star.
Insight: Paulino had a 1.67 ERA and 39 strikeouts in 37 2/3 innings last season before suffering a torn UCL. Duffy also had Tommy John surgery last season and is expected to start a minor league rehab assignment Sunday.
Description: Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks was placed on the 15-day disabled list with lower back spasms.
Insight: Middlebrooks has not lived up to expectations this season after hitting .288 with 15 homers in 75 games last year. He's hitting .203 with eight homers and an ugly strikeout-to-walk ratio (52/7) through 45 games.
Description: Padres left fielder Carlos Quentin (knee) received an injection in his left knee Tuesday and is questionable for Friday's game against Arizona.
Insight: The outfielder tweaked his knee on a slide at home plate Monday. Four home runs in 30 games alkong with a .178 batting average isn't what fantasy owners are expecting from Quentin. Hopefully he can get healthy and start hitting with power.