Week 9 Double Starters (05/28 â€“ 06/03)
Welcome to the Memorial Day edition of the look ahead. Those of you who are chasing your league mates in wins and strikeouts and looking to make up ground, youâ€™ll notice several low percentage options with good matchups this week. Make sure you check out the notes at the bottom for a few plays that come highly recommended.
Each and every Thursday throughout the season, the following weekâ€™s double start options will be listed below. They are listed in the order of my own personal preference and how they would be used in my own lineups.
The top tier of guys should be in your lineup regardless of who they are pitching against. You drafted them to be the core of your rotation, and they need to pitch for you. Occasionally, starters with terrific matchups in both starts will find their way into this group.
In deeper mixed leagues, the second tier of guys should most likely find a place in your rotation as well. In shallower leagues, perhaps you could play the matchups with this group.
The bottom tier of pitchers listed should be on your bench or started with extreme caution. Donâ€™t say that you or your ratios werenâ€™t given proper warning.
Disclaimer: Many things can change between Thursday and Monday, including rainouts, injuries, juggling of rotations, etc. This information has been provided to the best of my knowledge and ability as of Thursday afternoon.
Start your Aces
Justin Verlander: @ Red Sox (Bard), vs. Yankees (Hughes)
Chris Sale: @ Rays (Moore), vs. Mariners (Millwood)
Cole Hamels: @ Mets (Niese), vs. Marlins (Zambrano)
Jared Weaver: vs. Yankees (Hughes), vs. Rangers (Harrison)
Shawn Marcum: @ Dodgers (Harang), vs. Pirates (Bedard)
Matt Moore: vs. White Sox (Sale), vs. Orioles (Matusz)
Tommy Hanson: vs. Cardinals (Lynn), @ Nationals (Zimmermann)
Jordan Zimmermann: @ Marlins (Zambrano), vs. Braves (Hanson)
Carlos Zambrano: vs. Nationals (Zimmermann), @ Phillies (Hamels)
James McDonald: vs. Reds (Arroyo), @ Brewers (Peralta/Parra)
Doug Fister: @ Red Sox (Doubront), vs. Yankees (Kuroda)
Wandy Rodriguez: @ Rockies (Guthrie), vs. Reds (Arroyo)
Trevor Cahill: @ Giants (Zito), @ Padres (Suppan)
Play the Matchups
Phil Hughes: @ Angels (Weaver), @ Tigers (Verlander)
Travis Wood: vs. Padres (Suppan), @ Giants (Zito)
Lance Lynn: @ Braves (Hanson), @ Mets (Niese)
Matt Harrison: vs. Mariners (Millwood), @ Angels (Weaver)
Zach McAllister: vs. Royals (Hochevar), vs. Twins (Diamond)
Scott Diamond: vs. Athletics (Godfrey), @ Indians (McAllister)
Jonathan Niese: vs. Phillies (Hamels), vs. Cardinals (Lynn)
Bronson Arroyo: @ Pirates (McDonald), @ Astros (Rodriguez)
Felix Doubront: vs. Tigers (Fister), @ Blue Jays (Drabek)
Brian Matusz: @ Blue Jays (Hutchison), @ Rays (Moore)
Ted Lilly: vs. Brewers (Peralta/Parra), @ Rockies (Guthrie)
Luke Hochevar: @ Indians (McAllister), vs. Athletics (Godfrey)
Daniel Bard: vs. Tigers (Verlander), @ Blue Jays (Hutchison)
Aaron Harang: vs. Brewers (Marcum), @ Rockies (Nicasio)
Juan Nicasio: vs. Astros (Happ), vs. Dodgers (Harang)
On the Pine
Graham Godfrey: @ Twins (Diamond), @ Royals (Hochevar)
Wily Peralta/Manny Parra: @ Dodgers (Lilly), vs. Pirates (McDonald)
Jeremy Guthrie: vs. Astros (Rodriguez), vs, Dodgers (Lilly)
Kevin Millwood: @ Rangers (Harrison), @ White Sox (Sale)
J.A. Happ: @ Rockies (Nicasio), vs. Reds (Latos)
Drew Hutchison: vs. Orioles (Matusz), vs. Red Sox (Bard)
Jeff Suppan: @ Cubs (Wood), vs. Diamondbacks (Cahill)
Barry Zito: vs. Diamondbacks (Cahill), vs. Cubs (Wood)
Brian Matusz has been solid over his last three outings, and should be able to pick up a victory and 10+ strikeouts on the week. Heâ€™s worth the gamble in deeper mixed leagues.
Phil Hughes has gone 3-1 with a 2.81 ERA and 23 strikeouts in 25 2/3 innings over his last four starts. Getting two starts away from the friendly confines of Yankee Stadium, he should grab some Kâ€™s and help your ratios, but donâ€™t expect the wins matched up against Weaver and Verlander.
Matt Moore has been extremely disappointing with his 1-4 record and 5.07 ERA. However, he gets two solid matchups at home this week, and has actually pitched much better over his last three outings. Heâ€™s not going to be available on waiver wires, but needs to be active in all formats this week.
Drew Hutchison against two homer-happy teams at the Rogers Centre? Pass.
While heâ€™s been yanked back and forth between the closerâ€™s role and the rotation, you may have overlooked just how good Chris Sale has been this season. Heâ€™s 5-2 with a 2.50 ERA and 1.05 WHIP, and is becoming one of the more dominating starters in the American League. Expect at least one win and 15+ Kâ€™s on the week.
Zach McAllister has been fairly impressive through his first four starts, and has two favorable matchups on the week. Pay close attention to the health of Josh Tomlin though, who could re-enter the rotation and bounce McAllister back to the pen or Triple-A.
It doesnâ€™t matter who Justin Verlander is facing, he should never be benched in any format.
Luke Hochevar and Scott Diamond each have a pair of decent matchups, and make for interesting spot play for those who are behind in wins and Kâ€™s.
Graham Godfrey has been absolutely brutal on the season, but he does face the Twins and Royals. If youâ€™re the gambling type, go ahead.
Regardless of how well he has pitched in his last two starts, Kevin Millwood still isnâ€™t a good play. This is especially true when heâ€™s @ Arlington and @ US Cellular.
When healthy, Tommy Hanson has always proven to be a very good pitcher. Heâ€™s currently healthy and needs to be active everywhere.
One bad outing shouldnâ€™t dissuade you from playing Carlos Zambrano for his deuce. Heâ€™s been impressive in the early going.
Cole Hamels has been the Phillies best pitcher this season and is an obvious play in all leagues with two soft matchups.
Looking for an extremely low percentage play in deep leagues? Travis Wood (provided he remains in the rotation to make both starts) has two dream starts against Jeff Suppan and Barry Zito.
Shawn Marcum has been somewhat inconsistent in the early part of the season, but should be able to pick up a victory and solid strikeout numbers against the Dodgers and Pirates.
Wily Peralta or Manny Parra are the most likely candidates to fill in for Marco Estrada in the Brewers rotation, and either makes for a decent spot play this week, just make sure you pay attention once a decision is made.
Lance Lynn has struggled a bit over his last two starts, but should remain active in all formats.
Trevor Cahill also gets the dream scenario of squaring off against Barry Zito and Jeff Suppan. He should be owned and active in all leagues.
There is no good, logical reason to have Jeff Suppan or Barry Zito in your lineups this week.
If you have any rotation related questions that you would like answered, just leave them in the comments below or message me on Twitter @DaveShovein and Iâ€™d be more than happy to lend my opinion!