pedro and papi
It’s always fun to generate and debate lists. Since I’m a Red Sox fan I am starting a new series with them. Here’s the All-2000 to Present Red Sox Lineup.
C – Jason Varitek
1B – Kevin Youkilis
2B – Dustin Pedroia
3B – Mike Lowell
SS – Nomar Garciaparra
RF – Trot Nixon (Until Mookie Betts plays more)
LF – Manny Ramirez
CF – Jacoby Ellsbury (Just Barely over Johnny Damon)
DH – David Ortiz
SP – Pedro Martinez
SP – Jon Lester
SP – Curt Schilling
SP - Josh Beckett
SP – Tim Wakefield
Closer – Jonathan Papelbon
Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees

Jamie Garcia
Jaime Garcia, Atlanta Braves vs. San Francisco Giants
Garcia is 2-5 despite a 3.59 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP. He’s 1-0 with 6.2 scoreless innings against the Giants. San Francisco is hitting .241 and averaging 3.71 runs per game.
Season Totals: 68 starts, 21-22, 386.1 IP, 273 Ks, 4.26 ERA (183 earned runs), 1.36 WHIP (396 hits, 130 walks)

Junior Guerra
Junior Guerra, Milwaukee Brewers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
Guerra is 1-1 with a 2.84 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP. He’s 5-2 lifetime with a 2.46 ERA in 80.1 innings at Miller Park and 1-0 with a 1.42 in 19 career innings against the Pirates.
Season Totals: 67 starts, 21-21, 381.1 IP, 269 Ks, 4.15 ERA (176 earned runs), 1.35 WHIP (386 hits, 129 walks)

Zach Davies
Zach Davies, Milwaukee Brewers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
Davies is 7-3 despite a  4.91 ERA. He’s 1-0 against Pittsburgh with a 3.18 ERA. The Pirates are hitting .246 and averaging 4.19 runs.
Season Totals: 66 starts, 20-21, 374.1 IP, 263 Ks, 4.23 ERA (176 earned runs), 1.37 WHIP (383 hits, 128 walks)

R.A. Dickey Braves
R.A. Dickey, Atlanta Braves vs. San Francisco Giants
Dickey is 4-5 with a 5.35 ERA, but is 3-1 at home with a 4.15 mark. San Francisco is batting .242 and averaging 3.73 runs per game.
Season Totals: 66 starts, 20-21, 374.1 IP, 263 Ks, 4.23 ERA (176 earned runs), 1.37 WHIP (383 hits, 128 walks)

Zack Godley
Zack Godley, Arizona Cardinals at Philadelphia Phillies
Godley is 2-1 with a 2.44 ERA and a 0.99 WHIP. The Phillies are hitting .242 and are averaging 3.91 runs per game.
Season Totals: 64 starts, 20-21, 363 IP, 255 Ks, 4.24 ERA (171 earned runs), 1.37 WHIP (374 hits, 122 walks)

Eddie Butler
Eddie Butler, Chicago Cubs at Pittsburgh Pirates
Butler is 3-2 with a 4.03 ERA. Pittsburgh is batting .249 and averaging 4.23 runs.
Season Totals: 63 starts, 20-20, 357 IP, 251 Ks, 4.18 ERA (166 earned runs), 1.36 WHIP (364 hits, 120 walks)

This season has seen the Houston Astros fairing on well by dominating almost every game in the MLB. Based on such observations, internal issues could be the only threat to Astros hope of qualifying for the playoffs. It will be a 10-day recovery period for Lance McCullers after being sidelined with lower back discomfort. Such unforeseen circumstances could affect their mode of play because in a two-week period, the Astros has had the fourth member of their rotation hitting the DL. Other players include Charlie Morton with a back injury, Joe Musgrove with a shoulder injury and Dallas Keuchel with a neck injury. You should not forget Collin McHugh’s elbow injuries, which have prevented him from playing this year so far, but sportsbook odds could change upon his return.


On Thursday, McCullers played superbly when they visited the Royals. He made eight great hits and only gave up one run on two hits. The back issues seemed to have started affecting the 23-year-old pitcher as soon as he incorporated a bullpen session prior to their game against he Rangers on Tuesday in which he is supposed to start. Therefore, the Houston Astros have elevated their concerns with the right-hander since then. As said by Kaplan, it seems the team is not yet ready to lose both players with a long absence; however, it is eminent that they wll miss several games. In a deeper perspective, the Astros are now cracking their brains to figure out how four of their starters already hit the DL this season.


Houston Astros have a game against the Rangers on Tuesday, and even though the team confirmed that Musgrove would start, we are yet to know about the player who will replace McCullers’ rotation spot. We can only have a wild guess that Mike Fiers would be the best option for the Astros because clearly, the team has very few options in their favor.


McCullers and Keuchel are big names with unsurpassed capabilities for the team, which makes it difficult to find a suitable substitute unless it is well thought out. Even though the Houston have won 11 games in a row, they have dropped points in the last six games by losing four. While focusing on the four loses only, its pitchers gave up a whooping and disappointing 37 runs, which led to the Angels beating them on Sunday. David Paulino and Michael Feliz combined gave up six runs.


So far this season, in all his 13 starts, McCullers has managed to record a 2.58 ERA, which include eighty-nine strikeouts in seventy-six 2/3 innings. Last season, the pitcher started playing late and due to injuries to his elbow and shoulder, he retired his season earlier than the rest. With such circumstances affecting his playing time, the Astros have resorted to giving the picher ample time to recover.


Fantasy Impact

When it comes to Fantasy matters, the Astros made the move after McCullers started complaining about some uneasiness in his lower back in the middle of starts and in the course of bullpen sessions. The decision must have been nerve-wracking because, after all, the Astros were not ready to sideline McCullers in the long term. Although he will not play against the Rangers in their next scheduled match, McCullers has been a strong pillar for both the Astros and fantasy owners in equal measure this season.


David Strauss, line director at

“It was been quite the season for the Astros. They currently are 44-22, with a run score difference of +91. Plus, they are the top team in the American League. Also, they’re the top team with the best winning percentage at .667. Those numbers are extremely good compared to last year’s performance. And last but not least, they stand as the favorite in the online betting odds to win the World Series this year at +425. I don’t see this team losing momentum anytime soon and the midseason will give us a better perspective on where the team will be after the All Star Break.” said David Strauss, line director at

 | Posted by | Categories: MLB | Tagged: Houston Astros, Lance McCullers, MLB |

Ricky Nolasco Angels
Ricky Nolasco, Los Angeles Angels vs. Kansas City Royals
Nolasco has a 3.55 ERA in two June starts. He’s a decent bet to stay on track against Kansas City. The Royals are batting .241 and averaging 3.89 runs per game.
Season Totals: 62 starts, 20-20, 351 IP, 243 Ks, 4.21 ERA (164 earned runs), 1.35 WHIP (357 hits, 118 walks)

Amir Garrett
Amir Garrett, Cincinnati Reds at San Diego Padres
Garrett was 3-2 with a 4.25 ERA after six starts before four start stretch, but a trip to San Diego is promising. The Padres are hitting .225 and averaging 3.5 runs per game.
Season Totals: 61 starts, 20-19, 345.1 IP, 239 Ks, 4.09 ERA (157 earned runs), 1.34 WHIP (347 hits, 117 walks)

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