Week 26 Fantasy Hitting Planner

The Fantasy Baseball Hitting Planner is the essential guide to setting your lineup for the upcoming week. Every weekend, we provide you with favorable and unfavorable matchups as well as lineup changes for each team. This week's news and notes for each team:

Arizona Diamondbacks
Schedule: @SF3, @CHC3
Heating Up: Justin Upton isn't exactly hot by his standards, but he's batting .375 (6 for 16) over his last four games. Obviously, you want him active.
Cooling Off: Mark Reynolds has begun to come around lately, but he's still batting .143 (5 for 35) over his last nine games. He's so good, though, you just have to tolerate his cold streaks.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Diamondbacks face two left-handed pitchers this week. If recent history holds, Brandon Allen will sit those two games in favor of Ryan Roberts .
Lineup Changes: Rusty Ryal , who was Allen's original platoon partner, has replaced Roberts as the starter at second base against righties. It's no wonder why. He has an OPS over 1.000 so far and deserves a flier in NL-only leagues.

Atlanta Braves
Schedule: FLA3, WAS4
Heating Up: Martin Prado is playing like he did when he first took over as the everyday second baseman, batting .514 (18 for 35) during a nine-game hitting streak, with multiple hits in six of those games. He's worth starting in mixed leagues again. Adam LaRoche should already be starting in mixed leagues based on his hot second half. He's batting .407 (11 for 27) over his last eight games.
Cooling Off: Nate McLouth didn't stay hot for long, which isn't unexpected for a .264 hitter. He's batting .105 (2 for 19) over his last four games, but that's not reason enough to bench him if you rely on him every week.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Braves face two lefties this week, but Ryan Church has faded out of the picture again, yielding full-time at-bats to Matt Diaz . Diaz might lose a start or two, but he looks like a viable option in mixed leagues again, especially with the good matchups this week.
Lineup Changes: Other than the increased at-bats for Diaz, none.

Baltimore Orioles
Schedule: @TB4, TOR3
Heating Up: Matt Wieters has taken off at the end of his rookie year, batting .435 (20 for 46) with three home runs over his last 12 games. That performance is enough to make a him a must-start at the weakest position in Fantasy.
Cooling Off: Nick Markakis hasn't had his usual big second half, batting only .120 (6 for 50) over his last 13 games. If you've stuck with him all season, you shouldn't bench him now, but this year will go down as a disappointment for the 25-year-old. Melvin Mora is batting .083 (2 for 24) over his last seven games, but he's just an AL-only option at this stage of his career.
Injury Concerns: Felix Pie hurt his quadriceps Friday, but the Orioles think he'll return sometime this week. Since he's just a low-end sleeper even when healthy, you shouldn't bother with him.
Platoon Possibilities: The Orioles face two left-handers this week, but they don't have any clear lefty-righty platoons.
Lineup Changes: Wieters' hot hitting has moved him up to third in the lineup, which only makes him more appealing in Fantasy.

Boston Red Sox
Schedule: TOR3, CLE4
Heating Up: David Ortiz has three home runs and 10 RBI in his last four games and is worth starting in all leagues again. Victor Martinez , an obvious must-start, has a 25-game hitting streak during which he's batting .358 (34 for 95).
Cooling Off: Kevin Youkilis is at risk of finishing the year below .300 thanks to a recent slump. He's batting .139 (5 for 36) over his last nine games. Still, you'd never sit him.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Red Sox face four left-handers this week, meaning J.D. Drew should spend plenty of time on the bench. He'll sit at least some of those games in favor Rocco Baldelli .
Lineup Changes: None.

Chicago Cubs
Schedule: PIT4, ARI3
Heating Up: Jeff Baker , who's getting everyday at-bats at second base, has six multi-hit games in his last 10, batting .351 (13 for 37) during that stretch. He hasn't hit for much power, though, making him not worth your time in mixed leagues.
Cooling Off: Geovany Soto has fallen right back into his season-long slump, batting .120 (3 for 25) with nine strikeouts over his last six games. You can probably do better in mixed leagues that require only one catcher.
Injury Concerns: Derrek Lee missed a second straight game Saturday with neck spasms. The injury doesn't sound serious, but if he doesn't return Sunday, you'll at least want to think about sitting him. You'd need an awfully good backup to pass on his potential in the final week, though.
Platoon Possibilities: The Cubs face one left-hander this week, and with Reed Johnson fresh off the DL, Kosuke Fukudome figures to sit that game. Micah Hoffpauir will also sit against the lefty, but Jake Fox might replace him some against righties as well.
Lineup Changes: The Cubs have suspended Milton Bradley for the rest of the season and called up prospect Tyler Colvin to man center field on an everyday basis. He's a 24-year-old learning on the job, so you can leave him for NL-only leagues.

Chicago White Sox
Schedule: @CLE3, @DET3
Heating Up: No White Sox are performing better than expected right now.
Cooling Off: Paul Konerko , who was hot earlier in September, is batting .136 (3 for 22) over his last six games. You might want to consider hotter options, but he's good enough to start even when slumping.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The White Sox face only one left-hander this week, so Chris Getz should get a chance to play almost every day. Jayson Nix will replace him against the lefty.
Lineup Changes: None.

Cincinnati Reds
Schedule: STL3, PIT3
Heating Up: Joey Votto is playing out of his mind right now, batting .545 (18 for 33) with two home runs over his last eight games. He's trying his best to at least enter the discussion of elite first basemen for next year and should be starting in all leagues. Jay Bruce 's talent is finally beginning to show. He has homered in back-to-back games and is batting .500 (6 for 12) over his last four. Drew Stubbs is still looking like a good enough power-speed threat for mixed leagues, batting .310 (9 for 29) over his last six games.
Cooling Off: Jonny Gomes hasn't been in the lineup as much lately and is batting only .143 (2 for 14) over his last six games.
Injury Concerns: Scott Rolen missed his second straight game Saturday with lower back spasms, which is the kind of injury that can linger for several days. Only start him in the most desperate of circumstances.
Platoon Possibilities: The Reds face one lefty this week, which means Gomes and Wladimir Balentien will spend more time than usual on the bench. Balentien is in what looks like a strict platoon with Bruce. Gomes still gets most of the playing time against righties, but Laynce Nix has spelled him on occasion.
Lineup Changes: Willy Taveras , who missed a month with a strained right quadriceps, returned to the lineup Thursday, but manager Dusty Baker talked like he wouldn't play much, even using the name Wally Pipp to describe him. Stubbs' starting job in center field appears safe.

Top 10 Hitters Added
Player % Change
1. Drew Stubbs , OF, Reds 8
2. Edwin Encarnacion , 3B, Blue Jays 5
3. Juan Uribe , 3B, Giants 5
4. Rafael Furcal , SS, Dodgers 4
5. Howie Kendrick , 2B, Angels 4
6. Martin Prado , 2B, Braves 4
7. Yorvit Torrealba , C, Rockies 4
8. Matt Wieters , C, Orioles 3
9. Hank Blalock , 1B, Rangers 3
10. Alberto Callaspo , 2B, Royals 3

Cleveland Indians
Schedule: CHW3, @BOS4
Heating Up: Shin-Soo Choo , who just a week ago had only three home runs in the second half, is batting .400 (8 for 20) with two home runs over his last five games. He's still a must-start.
Cooling Off: Jhonny Peralta disappointing season isn't getting any better. He's batting .111 (4 for 36) over his last nine games and is just a low-end option in mixed leagues.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Indians face three left-handed pitchers this week, so Luis Valbuena will lose three starts to Jamey Carroll .
Lineup Changes: The Indians want to see what Lou Marson has to offer, so they've given him most of the starts behind the plate recently. He hasn't done enough with his at-bats to matter in mixed leagues, though.

Colorado Rockies
Schedule: MIL3, @LAD3
Heating Up: Troy Tulowitzki has hit safely in 11 of his last 13 games to establish himself as an elite Fantasy shortstop, batting .373 (19 for 51) with six home runs during that stretch. Clint Barmes , his double-player partner, has joined him, batting .524 (11 for 21) over his last six games.
Cooling Off: Seth Smith couldn't sustain his hot hitting from earlier in the month, batting .154 (4 for 26) over his last nine games. As a result, he has begun losing at-bats against right-handers as well as left-handers. Brad Hawpe is batting .143 (3 for 21) over his last eight games and is no longer a must-start.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Rockies face four lefties this week, which is bad news for Smith and Carlos Gonzalez . You should pretty much expect them to sit all four games for Ryan Spilborghs and Dexter Fowler , making them worthless in mixed leagues for this final week.
Lineup Changes: None.

Detroit Tigers
Schedule: MIN4, CHW3
Heating Up: Placido Polanco , who's batting well over .300 in the second half, is batting .500 (13 for 26) over his last six games. He looks like a good mixed-league option again. Carlos Guillen isn't quite as enticing in mixed leagues since he's in a platoon role, but he's batting .563 (9 for 16) with two home runs over his last five games.
Cooling Off: Since coming over from the Orioles, Aubrey Huff has lost what little Fantasy value he had. He's batting .200 (4 for 20) over his last seven games.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Tigers face two left-handers this week, which means Huff and Guillen will sit twice for Marcus Thames and Ryan Raburn .
Lineup Changes: None.

Florida Marlins
Schedule: @ATL3, @PHI3
Heating Up: Chris Coghlan just won't let up. He's batting .421 (16 for 38) over his last nine games. Jorge Cantu 's hot streaks never seem to last long, but he's batting .643 (9 for 14) with four doubles and five RBI over his last three games.
Cooling Off: Dan Uggla is batting .143 (4 for 28) over his last eight games. He's a hard player to sit, but with the Marlins on the road this week, it's not the worst idea ever.
Injury Concerns: Jeremy Hermida , out since early September because of a strained oblique, took batting practice Wednesday and could return this week. He'd have to split at-bats, though, so you can ignore him in most leagues. Cody Ross got hit in the hand by a pitch Saturday. He's day to day and is just a low-end option when healthy.
Platoon Possibilities: The Marlins face two left-handers this week, so you can expect John Baker to sit twice for Ronny Paulino .
Lineup Changes: None.

Top sleepers for Week 26
Player Start %
1. Garrett Jones , OF, Pirates 51
2. Adam LaRoche , 1B, Braves 51
3. Rajai Davis , OF, Athletics 59
4. Billy Butler , 1B, Royals 64
5. Carlos Beltran , OF, Mets 51
6. Martin Prado , 2B, Braves 30
7. Juan Rivera , OF, Angels 60
8. Placido Polanco , 2B, Tigers 55
9. Matt Wieters , C, Orioles 62
10. Rafael Furcal , SS, Dodgers 55
* Sleepers are players started in less than 65 percent of CBSSports.com leagues

Houston Astros
Schedule: @PHI4, @NYM3
Heating Up: Miguel Tejada has a 13-game hitting streak during which he's batting .408 (20 for 49). He has been streaky this season, but you want him active now.
Cooling Off: Hunter Pence , who has had a mostly good September after a poor July and August, is batting .105 (2 for 19) over his last five games. That's not enough reason to sit him, though.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Astros face three left-handers this week, making Geoff Blum even less appealing than usual. He typically sits for Jeff Keppinger against the lefties.
Lineup Changes: None.

Kansas City Royals
Schedule: @NYY3, @MIN3
Heating Up: Billy Butler hot September continues. He's batting .424 (14 for 33) with four home runs over his last nine games and has achieved must-start status in Fantasy.
Cooling Off: Willie Bloomquist has gotten a chance to hit leadoff lately, but he's batting only .125 (3 for 24) over his last seven games. Leave him for AL-only leagues.
Injury Concerns: David DeJesus , Miguel Olivo and Mark Teahen have all missed time recently because of an illness sweeping through the Royals clubhouse. They'll likely return this week, but since they're just low-end options, play it safe and bench them.
Platoon Possibilities: The Royals face two left-handed pitchers this week. Mike Jacobs often sits against lefties, but he doesn't have a clear platoon partner.
Lineup Changes: None.

L.A. Angels
Schedule: TEX4, @OAK3
Heating Up: Chone Figgins has hit safely in six straight games, batting .440 (11 for 25) to bring his season batting average up over .300.
Cooling Off: Bobby Abreu , who has had a disappointing second half, has gotten even worse lately, batting .129 (4 for 31) over his last eight games. Torii Hunter has joined him, batting .147 (5 for 34) over his last eight, though his downfall is more expected given his career track record. You shouldn't give up on either player at this crucial point in the season.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Angels face two lefties this week, but they don't have any lefty-righty platoons now that Howie Kendrick is playing regularly.
Lineup Changes: None.

L.A. Dodgers
Schedule: @PIT1, @SD2, COL3
Heating Up: Rafael Furcal has a 10-game hitting streak during which he's batting .419 (18 for 43) with two home runs and four stolen bases. He has only 10 stolen bases all year, so if you've kept him on your roster all this time, holding out hope he'd contribute something this season, now's the time to activate him.
Cooling Off: Andre Ethier has only one hit in his last 17 at-bats, but you'd never sit him.
Injury Concerns: Casey Blake ended up missing his fourth straight game Saturday with a strained hamstring, but he was in the original lineup and would have played if the field wasn't wet. He's a safe start for the upcoming scoring period.
Platoon Possibilities: The Dodgers face three left-handers this week, but they don't have any lefty-righty platoons.
Lineup Changes: Manager Joe Torre continues to give Ronnie Belliard starts over Orlando Hudson at second base. With part-time at-bats, neither player matters in mixed leagues.

Milwaukee Brewers
Schedule: @COL3, @STL3
Heating Up: Felipe Lopez is batting .378 (14 for 37) over his last 10 games, making him worth using in mixed leagues despite his lack of power and speed. Prince Fielder has four home runs in his last six games.
Cooling Off: Mike Cameron has only one hit in his last 16 at-bats. The risk outweighs the reward with him, so you can leave him for NL-only leagues.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Brewers face only right-handers this week, which makes Corey Hart a risky start. He has lost at-bats to Jody Gerut against righties lately.
Lineup Changes: Other than the emergence of the Hart-Gerut platoon, none.

Best Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Braves FLA3, WAS4
2. Cubs PIT4, ARI3
3. Red Sox TOR3, CLE4
4. Rays BAL4, NYY3
5. Pirates LAD1, @CHC4, @CIN3

Minnesota Twins
Schedule: @DET4, KC3
Heating Up: Michael Cuddyer is batting .380 (19 for 50) with six home runs over his last 12 games, bringing him to 30 on the season. He's clearly a must-start now. Delmon Young is batting .341 (15 for 44) over his last 11 games, but he's still not getting on base and still not hitting for power. Leave him for AL-only leagues.
Cooling Off: Jason Kubel is batting only .143 (3 for 21) over his last six games, but he faces plenty of righties this week to help him get back on track.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Twins face two left-handers this week, but they don't have any lefty-righty platoons.
Lineup Changes: None.

N.Y. Mets
Schedule: @WAS3, HOU3
Heating Up: After hitting a rough patch in mid-September, Angel Pagan is batting .360 (9 for 25) over his last six games, making him a sleeper in all leagues again.
Cooling Off: One of the few things salvaging David Wright disappointing season is his high batting average, but it's at risk of dipping below .300 now. He's batting .120 (3 for 25) over his last six games, but you probably can't afford to sit him.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Mets face three left-handers this week, which means Daniel Murphy won't be worth your while. He typically sits for Fernando Tatis against lefties. So does Josh Thole for either Brian Schneider or Omir Santos , but none of those players matters in mixed leagues.
Lineup Changes: Carlos Beltran has played in six straight games, showing the Mets appear willing to turn him loose after he missed over two months with a knee injury. His talent makes him worth the gamble in mixed leagues.

N.Y. Yankees
Schedule: KC3, @TB3
Heating Up: Alex Rodriguez had a huge game Friday, going 3 for 3 with a home run, a double, four RBI, three runs scored and three stolen bases. He has three home runs in his last five games, is batting .354 in September and is a clear must-start in Fantasy. Hideki Matsui is approaching his career high in homers with five in his last 12 games and 28 overall. Continue to start him in all leagues.
Cooling Off: Nick Swisher has only one hit in his last 17 at-bats, which isn't unexpected considering he was hot earlier in the month. Sit him if you can. Melky Cabrera is batting .129 (4 for 31) over his last 10 games, so you clearly shouldn't use him in mixed leagues right now.
Injury Concerns: Jorge Posada , who just returned from a foot injury, missed Saturday's game with a stiff neck. If he played any other position but catcher, you might worry about his availability for this week, but since you can't expect to find any worthwhile catchers off the waiver wire, you should just start him and hope for the best. He probably won't miss much time anyway. Jerry Hairston missed his second game Saturday with a sore wrist, but his inconsistent playing time makes him just an AL-only option when healthy.
Platoon Possibilities: The Yankees face one lefty this week, but they don't have any lefty-righty platoons.
Lineup Changes: None.

Oakland Athletics
Schedule: @SEA3, LAA3
Heating Up: Don't look now, but Daric Barton actually has a respectable batting average. After a four-hit game Saturday, he's batting .522 (12 for 23) over his last seven, making him a worthwhile option in AL-only leagues. Rajai Davis is a worthwhile option in all leagues. He's batting .355 (22 for 62) during a 14-game hitting streak.
Cooling Off: Cliff Pennington has cooled off a little after impressing earlier in the month, batting .125 (2 for 16) over his last four games. He's still worth using in AL-only leagues.
Injury Concerns: Scott Hairston , who hasn't played since Monday because of a hip injury, remained out of the lineup Saturday. Considering his struggles since coming over from the Padres, you shouldn't start him.
Platoon Possibilities: The Athletics face one left-hander this week, which means Eric Patterson should continue to get at-bats, assuming Hairston doesn't get in the way. The A's are experimenting too much with their lineup now to have any lefty-righty platoons.
Lineup Changes: Other than the increased use of Patterson, none.

Philadelphia Phillies
Schedule: HOU4, FLA3
Heating Up: Ryan Howard is playing to earn a few MVP votes, as he does down the stretch every year. He's batting .368 (14 for 38) with five home runs over his last nine games and is an obvious must-start.
Cooling Off: Shane Victorino just can't seem to get anything going in September. After showing some signs of life in the middle of the month, he's batting .176 (6 for 34) over his last 10 games. If you've relied on him all year, you can't afford to bench him now. Same goes for Jayson Werth , who's batting .042 (1 for 24) over his last eight games.
Injury Concerns: Carlos Ruiz hasn't played since Tuesday because of a sprained left wrist. He'll probably return at some point this week, but his outlook is too risky and his numbers too modest for you to use him.
Platoon Possibilities: The Phillies face all right-handers in their seven games this week, not that they have any lefty-righty platoons.
Lineup Changes: The Phillies will likely go with Paul Bako behind the plate if Ruiz can't return, not that he's more than a last resort in NL-only leagues.

Worst Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Rangers @LAA4, @SEA3
2. Indians CHW3, @BOS4
3. Padres LAD2, SF3
4. Diamondbacks @SF3, @CHC3
5. Marlins @ATL3, @PHI3

Pittsburgh Pirates
Schedule: LAD1, @CHC4, @CIN3
Heating Up: Ryan Doumit is batting .400 (8 for 20) over his last six games, showing he still has too much offensive potential for you to sit him.
Cooling Off: Lastings Milledge , who has mostly hit well since coming over from the Nationals, is batting .067 (1 for 15) over his last four games. Leave him for NL-only leagues.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Pirates face one left-hander in their eight games this week. They don't have any lefty-righty platoons, but Garrett Jones should thrive against all those righties. He has a .656 slugging percentage against them.
Lineup Changes: Delwyn Young has regained his job at second base since returning from a back injury, forcing Ramon Vazquez and Luis Cruz to the bench. Young still isn't hitting well enough to be more than a low-end NL-only option, though.

San Diego Padres
Schedule: LAD2, SF3
Heating Up: Chase Headley is batting .379 (11 for 29) over his last seven games, salvaging what was looking like an awful season. He's still not much of a mixed-league option.
Cooling Off: Everth Cabrera is batting .143 (3 for 21) over his last five games, and he doesn't figure to improve with the team heading home this week. Turn to other options if you have them.
Injury Concerns: Padres manager Bud Black told the San Diego Union-Tribune he expects Kevin Kouzmanoff , who hasn't played since Sept. 8 because of a back injury, to return Tuesday for the final homestand against the Dodgers and the Giants. He's too streaky for you to trust him coming off such a long layoff.
Platoon Possibilities: The Padres face just one left-hander this week, but with only five games total, that's enough to make a difference. A guy like Will Venable might play only four games.
Lineup Changes: None.

San Francisco Giants
Schedule: ARI3, @SD3
Heating Up: Juan Uribe is clearly an everyday player now and has yet to slow down, batting .407 (11 for 27) with two home runs over his last seven games. He deserves a look in mixed leagues. Pablo Sandoval is ending the season on a high note, batting .357 (15 for 42) over his last 11 games.
Cooling Off: Neither Aaron Rowand nor Randy Winn looks viable in mixed leagues right now. Rowand is batting .146 (6 for 41) over his last 13 games. Winn is batting .118 (2 for 17) over his last eight games.
Injury Concerns: Rowand tweaked his back Saturday, so that's just another reason to avoid him this week. Bengie Molina left Thursday's game after getting hit in the finger by a pitch. X-Rays revealed no fracture, but the Giants are using the injury as an excuse to give prospect Buster Posey at-bats. Molina likely won't play much this week, making him not worth starting in mixed leagues. Unfortunately, Posey is too much of an uncertainty at this stage of his career for you to turn to him.
Platoon Possibilities: The Giants face two left-handers this week, meaning Travis Ishikawa will sit twice for Ryan Garko . John Bowker has gotten starts in left field lately, but the Giants will probably replace him with someone like Andres Torres against the lefties.
Lineup Changes: The Giants have shut Edgar Renteria down for the season because of an elbow injury, which means Uribe will stay at shortstop and the Ishikawa-Garko platoon will stay at first base.

Seattle Mariners
Schedule: OAK3, TEX3
Heating Up: Franklin Gutierrez is batting .394 (13 for 33) over his last eight games, which gives him some sleeper appeal for the upcoming week. Then again, with the Mariners facing only one left-hander, he might cool off quickly.
Cooling Off: Bill Hall is batting .111 (2 for 18) over his last seven games, but if you play in a deep enough league for him to matter, you wouldn't have a replacement for him anyway.
Injury Concerns: Adrian Beltre fouled a ball off his leg Friday and missed Saturday's game as expected. He shouldn't miss much longer, but with only seven home runs on the year, he isn't worth your time in mixed leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Mariners face one left-hander this week, so Ken Griffey and Mike Carp should get plenty of at-bats. They platoon with Mike Sweeney and Matt Tuiasosopo .
Lineup Changes: None.

St. Louis Cardinals
Schedule: @CIN3, MIL3
Heating Up: Skip Schumaker is batting .444 (20 for 45) with eight multi-hit games over his last 12. Unfortunately, as a platoon player, his value remains limited to NL-only leagues.
Cooling Off: Mark DeRosa continues to struggle in a Cardinals uniform, going 1 for 10 over his last three games. Unless you have nobody else to use at second or third base, you should sit him.
Injury Concerns: Yadier Molina left Saturday's game after fouling a ball off his knee. He's not good enough that you have to take a chance on him if he doesn't return Sunday.
Platoon Possibilities: The Cardinals face two left-handers this week, which means Schumaker will sit twice for Julio Lugo .
Lineup Changes: None.

Tampa Bay Rays
Schedule: BAL4, NYY3
Heating Up: Melvin Upton is batting .444 (8 for 18) over his last five games, but after a season of disappointment, that's not enough to make him appealing now.
Cooling Off: Carl Crawford is batting .250 (4 for 16) over his last six games and is at risk of dipping below .300 for the season, but you wouldn't bench him.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Rays face three left-handers this week, but neither Gabe Gross nor Gabe Kapler starts consistently enough for it to make a difference.
Lineup Changes: None.

Texas Rangers
Schedule: @LAA4, @SEA3
Heating Up: Marlon Byrd homered twice Saturday and is batting .308 (8 for 26) with 11 RBI over his last seven games. Batting cleanup for the Rangers, he has sleeper appeal in all leagues. Chris Davis is showing rare signs of life, batting .394 (13 for 33) over his last nine games. Still, if he's not hitting homers, his strikeouts aren't worth the trouble.
Cooling Off: No Rangers are significantly underachieving right now.
Injury Concerns: Michael Young hasn't made much progress with his injured hamstring that has kept him out most of September. He still has a chance of returning this week, but the fewer games the Rangers have left, the less motivation they have to bring him back at all. Keep him reserved.
Platoon Possibilities: The Rangers face two left-handers this week, which means Julio Borbon will sit twice for Andruw Jones . With his hot hitting of late, five games is enough for you to take a chance on him if you need steals.
Lineup Changes: Josh Hamilton , who missed 19 games with a sore back, returned to the lineup Friday. You probably don't have enough bench options to consider sitting him, but if you do, you might want to. He'll have some rust after such a long layoff with no rehab assignment.

Toronto Blue Jays
Schedule: @BOS3, @BAL3
Heating Up: Edwin Encarnacion , true to his streaky form, has finally begun to hit a bit after injuries kept him down all year. He's batting .333 (10 for 30) with three home runs over his last nine games and really isn't the worst choice in mixed leagues right now if you need a stopgap at third base.
Cooling Off: Rod Barajas , who was on fire at the end of August, has been anything but at the end of September. He's batting .045 (1 for 22) over his last seven games.
Injury Concerns: None.
Platoon Possibilities: The Blue Jays face one lefty this week. Expect Kevin Millar and Randy Ruiz to replace Lyle Overbay and Travis Snider for that game.
Lineup Changes: With Marco Scutaro sidelined for the year with a heel injury, the Blue Jays have turned to Jose Bautista as their everyday right fielder and leadoff hitter, forcing Ruiz to the bench. Bautista has a good on-base percentage, but he has a batting average on the wrong side of .240 and is just an AL-only option. Same goes for John McDonald , who has taken Scutaro's place at shortstop.

Washington Nationals
Schedule: NYM3, @ATL4
Heating Up: No Nationals are exceeding expectations right now.
Cooling Off: Josh Willingham continues to have a miserable September, batting .071 (1 for 14) over his last five games and .164 (11 for 67) for the month. With the team facing all right-handers, he doesn't figure to come around this week, so keep him out of your lineup in mixed leagues.
Injury Concerns: Cristian Guzman has a sore shoulder and probably won't play the field again this season. He had lost most of his mixed-league appeal anyway. Ian Desmond now has the assurance of everyday at-bats and deserves to start in NL-only leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Nationals face all right-handers this week, but they don't have any lefty-righty platoons. All those righties won't help Willingham's case, though.
Lineup Changes: None.

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Senior Fantasy Writer

Raised in Atlanta by a board game-loving family during the dawn of the '90s Braves dynasty, Scott White was easy prey for the Fantasy Sports, in particular Fantasy Baseball, and has devoted his adulthood... Full Bio

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