Week 3 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.

Weather planner: Taking into account all games with at least a 50 percent chance of precipitation according to Weather.com, the following games could potentially get rained out:

Monday: Atlanta at Washington (70 percent chance) and Florida at Pittsburgh (70 percent chance) Tuesday: Atlanta at Washington (80 percent chance), Chicago White Sox at Baltimore (80 percent chance), Cincinnati at Chicago Cubs (80 percent chance), Florida at Pittsburgh (80 percent chance), Kansas City at Cleveland (80 percent chance), Milwaukee at Philadelphia (70 percent chance), Oakland at N.Y. Yankees (80 percent chance) and Minnesota at Boston (70 percent chance) Wednesday: Oakland at N.Y Yankees (50 percent chance), Kansas City at Cleveland (50 percent chance), Milwaukee at Philadelphia (50 percent chance), Minnesota at Boston (50 percent chance)

This week's news and notes for each team:

Arizona Diamondbacks
Schedule: COL3, SF3
Heating Up: Felipe Lopez continues to pace the lineup from the leadoff spot, batting .462 (12-for-26) over his last six games.
Cooling Off: Conor Jackson , who hit .300 last year and has a reputation as a contact hitter, is batting only .125 (3-for-24) over his last seven games.
Injury Concerns: Stephen Drew missed Saturday's game with a tight hamstring. He's a risky start for Fantasy Week 3 (April 20-26) if he doesn't return to the lineup Sunday, but with few alternatives available off the waiver wire, you might just want to cross your fingers. His replacement, Augie Ojeda , offers little offensively.
Platoon Possibilities: The Diamondbacks will play four of their six games this week against left-handed pitchers, making Chad Tracy an inadvisable start even in NL-only leagues. Eric Byrnes will probably start those games, though Tony Clark could also factor.
Lineup Changes: The Diamondbacks recently flipped two struggling players in the batting order, moving Jackson up to second and dropping Chris Young down to sixth. Neither player has improved much. Both deserve roster spots in mixed leagues, but you can bench them until they heat up.

Atlanta Braves
Schedule: @WAS3, @CIN3
Heating Up: Jeff Francoeur hasn't hit for much power yet, but he clearly looks like a different player from a last year, hitting .455 (10-for-22) over his last six games.
Cooling Off: Brian McCann is obviously too valuable to sit, but he's 0-for-13 over his last five games.
Injury Concerns: Chipper Jones missed his fourth straight game with a bruised thumb Saturday, but manager Bobby Cox said he could return Sunday. Either way, you should probably get him back active in mixed leagues. His return is imminent, and he's an elite hitter when healthy. Yunel Escobar also could return Sunday from a strained abdominal muscle, but because he's not an elite player, you can afford to take a more cautious approach with him in mixed leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Braves face only one left-handed pitcher this week, so you'll probably want to reserve Matt Diaz if you own him in an NL-only league.
Lineup Changes: Omar Infante has started with Jones sidelined and has hit pretty well, but he doesn't figure to get many at-bats this week if Jones and Escobar return as planned. Ignore him in all leagues.

Baltimore Orioles
Schedule: @BOS1, CHW3, TEX3
Heating Up: After two weeks of play, Adam Jones looks like a legitimate breakout candidate. Over his last four games, he's batting .429 (6-for-14) with two home runs. Brian Roberts has hit even better, batting .500 (11-for-22) over his last five games, but he's already a must-start in Fantasy.
Cooling Off: Since hitting his first home run of the season, Aubrey Huff is batting .176 (3-for-17) in four games. He remains too valuable to sit.
Injury Concerns: Melvin Mora went on the DL with a hamstring injury and won't return until May, making free-agent acquisition Ty Wigginton the starter at third base for now. Wigginton hit 23 home runs in only 386 at-bats last year, so he deserves to start in all AL-only leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Orioles face only one left-hander this week, but with Wigginton already in the lineup, it doesn't really matter. Luke Scott and Felix Pie could both have big weeks, though.
Lineup Changes: Other than Wigginton, none of consequence.

Boston Red Sox
Schedule: BAL1, MIN2, NYY3
Heating Up: Injury-prone J.D. Drew is batting .360 (9-for-25) with three home runs during a six-game hitting streak. Kevin Youkilis also has three home runs and is batting .467 on the year.
Cooling Off: David Ortiz had his second two-hit game Saturday, but he's still batting .186 with only one extra-base hit (a double).
Injury Concerns: Not only did Jed Lowrie go on the DL with a relapse of last year's wrist injury, but he might need to have season-ending surgery. He's not worth owning in mixed leagues unless you have a free DL slot.
Platoon Possibilities: The Red Sox face left-handers in half of their six games this week. Drew's hot streak will likely keep him in the lineup, so Jacoby Ellsbury figures to lose at-bats to Rocco Baldelli -- maybe even enough for you to sit him and his .217 batting average.
Lineup Changes: Nick Green has replaced Lowrie at the bottom of the Red Sox lineup, but he has no pop and shouldn't matter outside of deeper AL-only leagues.

Top 10 Hitters Added
Player % Change
1. Joe Mauer , C, MIN 42
2. Alex Rodriguez , 3B, NYY 42
3. Nick Swisher , OF, NYY 38
4. Marco Scutaro , SS, TOR 31
5. Ichiro Suzuki , OF, SEA 30
6. Kosuke Fukudome , OF, CHC 30
7. Elijah Dukes , OF, WAS 28
8. Scott Rolen , 3B, TOR 28
9. Chris Duncan , OF, STL 28
10. Aaron Hill , 2B, TOR 26

Chicago Cubs
Schedule: CIN3, @STL3
Heating Up: After falling apart in the second half last year, Kosuke Fukudome has reemerged as a viable mixed-league option, batting .375 with three home runs. He's 5-for-13 over his last three games. Alfonso Soriano has hit safely in every game but one this season, batting .292 with five home runs.
Cooling Off: After a hot start, Mike Fontenot batting average has dipped to .222 thanks to a 1-for-19 performance over the past week. Aaron Miles stole a start from him Saturday.
Injury Concerns: Milton Bradley has missed five games with a groin injury but has a chance of returning Tuesday when the Cubs begin the week against the Reds. Unfortunately, he at some point has to serve a two-game suspension that he decided to appeal instead of just serving now, while injured. Should you start him? As a fourth outfielder, probably. He has already appeared as a pinch hitter, a sign of progress, and his appeal hearing likely won't take place for a few more weeks. But he could always suffer a setback and wasn't exactly off to a blazing start before the injury, hitting .053.
Platoon Possibilities: The Cubs don't currently match up against any left-handers this upcoming week, making Fukudome once again a great start in mixed leagues.
Lineup Changes: Micah Hoffpauir has played for Bradley and played well, even batting cleanup. His offensive potential makes him an intriguing add in mixed leagues, but he figures to return to a reserve role this week.

Chicago White Sox
Schedule: @BAL3, TOR3
Heating Up: The entire middle of the order has hit the ball well, with Carlos Quentin homering in two straight games to bring his season total to six, Jermaine Dye batting .370 (10-for-27) with four home runs over his last seven games and Paul Konerko batting .341 coming off an off year. All three players deserve to start in all leagues.
Cooing Off: Still nothing from last year's Rookie of the Year runner-up Alexei Ramirez , who went 1-for-15 over his last four games and is batting .125 overall. You can't find a better shortstop on waivers, though, so just stick with him.
Injury Concerns: Dewayne Wise had to go on the DL with a separated shoulder. Brian Anderson has started in his absence but hasn't made any sort of difference in AL-only leagues. The injury also brought Jerry Owens back to the majors, which is notable because his ability to steal bases gives him some appeal in deeper AL-only leagues, even as a part-time player.
Platoon Possibilities: The White Sox face two left-handers this week, which means Brent Lillibridge will likely get two starts in place of Chris Getz . Jim Thome might also lose a start just to keep his 38-year-old body fresh, but he's just a low-end mixed-league option at this stage of his career.
Lineup Changes: None

Cincinnati Reds
Schedule: @HOU1, @CHC3, ATL3
Heating Up: Joey Votto hasn't homered since April 9, but he has hit safely in his last six games, batting .348 (8-for-23). He's clearly a must-start.
Cooling Off: Brandon Phillips has only one homer and one steal this season, and he has gone 1-for-16 over his last five games. He remains too valuable to sit, though.
Injury Concerns: Jay Bruce missed Saturday's game against the Astros because of a sore right hand. He's batting only .167 on the year, so you should probably have him reserved in mixed leagues anyway. The injury just sounds like a day-to-day problem, though.
Platoon Possibilities: The Reds face three left-handers during their seven-game week, making Jerry Hairston a worthwhile option in NL-only Rotisserie leagues despite his lack of steals so far. His platoon partner, Chris Dickerson , continues to see irregular at-bats and also has yet to steal a base.
Lineup Changes: None

Cleveland Indians
Schedule: KC3, MIN3
Heating Up: Seemingly every player is rolling after Saturday's 22-4 blowout victory. Mark DeRosa has made the most dramatic turnaround, though, batting .333 (13-for-39) with three home runs during an eight-game hitting streak. Victor Martinez , coming off an injury-plagued 2008, has been hot all season, batting .388 with four home runs. Also, Asdrubal Cabrera is batting .500 (11-for-22) over a six-game hitting streak, but he remains mostly just an AL-only option.
Cooling Off: Ben Francisco is still batting only .211, making him not worth your time in mixed leagues, but he is 4-for-12 over his last three games.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Indians face two left-handers this week, but none of their regulars figures to sit against them.
Lineup Changes: None

Colorado Rockies
Schedule: @ARI3, LAD3
Heating Up: Nobody, really.
Cooling Off: All of the Rockies struggled away from Coors Field this past week, but Ryan Spilborghs has really fallen off, going 1-for-15 over his last four games. Todd Helton has yet to get going at the plate, batting .188. Both players still have some sleeper appeal, but don't hesitate to cut them if necessary.
Injury Concerns: Brad Hawpe returned from a hamstring injury Friday and homered in his first game back. Go ahead and get him active in all leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Rockies face only one left-handed pitcher this week, so rookie Dexter Fowler probably won't get many at-bats. Conversely, Seth Smith and Ian Stewart could both make an impact in NL-only leagues.
Lineup Changes: Stewart started at second base for the second time this season Saturday, adding some punch to a so far punchless lineup. If the team keeps struggling to score runs, Stewart will get in the lineup more and more. The power-hitting sophomore has the potential to become a must-start Fantasy option with full-time at-bats, especially if he gains eligibility at second base.

Detroit Tigers
Schedule: @LAA3, @KC3
Heating Up: Miguel Cabrera has yet to cool off, batting .488 with four home runs. Gerald Laird has joined him in hotness, batting .429 (9-for-21) over his last five games (though with only two extra-base hits).
Cooling Off: Carlos Guillen still can't get anything to fall. He's batting only .158 and should sit for now in mixed leagues. Curtis Granderson has also struggled, batting .136 (3-for-22) over his last five games, but he remains too valuable to sit.
Injury Concerns: Adam Everett missed Saturday's game with an illness. He'll probably return Sunday, but his replacement, Ramon Santiago , would likely do more for AL-only owners.
Platoon Possibilities: The Tigers face only one left-hander this week, which likely means only one start for Marcus Thames . He really doesn't matter outside of deeper AL-only leagues. Josh Anderson has ended up playing more than Jeff Larish against right-handed pitchers, offering speed at the expense of power.
Lineup Changes: None

Scott's top Week 3 sleepers
Player Start %
1. Luke Scott , OF, BAL 15
2. Jeremy Hermida , OF, FLA 25
3. Kosuke Fukudome , OF, CHC 45
4. Felipe Lopez , SS, ARI 38
5. Willy Taveras , OF, CIN 28
6. Ty Wigginton , 3B, BAL 12
7. Jason Kubel , DH, MIN 19
8. Elijah Dukes , OF, WAS 30
9. Nick Johnson , 1B, WAS 8
10. Elvis Andrus , SS, TEX 25
* sleepers are players started in less than 50 percent of CBSSports.com leagues

Florida Marlins
Schedule: @PIT3, PHI3
Heating Up: Jeremy Hermida hit not just one, but two clutch home runs Saturday. He's now batting .355 (11-for-31) during a nine-game hitting streak and could be showing signs of a breakout season. Also, Cody Ross has picked up his play with two home runs in his last three games.
Cooling Off: You wouldn't sit Hanley Ramirez , obviously, but he's batting only .133 (4-for-30) with one extra-base hit over his last six games.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Marlins face two left-handers this week, meaning John Baker might start only four games. He's still a worthy No. 2 option in mixed leagues, though.
Lineup Changes: With rookie Cameron Maybin slumping to begin the season, the Marlins have dropped him to eighth in the lineup even against left-handers. Hermida moved into the No. 2 spot Saturday and obviously made enough of a statement to stay there. He'll likely continue to bat lower in the lineup against righties, though.

Houston Astros
Schedule: CIN1, LAD3, MIL3
Heating Up: Miguel Tejada , moved up to second in the lineup, continues to swing a hot but powerless bat, hitting .500 (10-for-20) over his last five games.
Cooling Off: Lance Berkman , who hit only .259 in the second half last year, is hitting only .130 (3-for-23) over his last seven games. You obviously shouldn't sit him, though.
Injury Concerns: Kazuo Matsui , out since Wednesday with back stiffness, didn't return Saturday. His status is still up in the air, and since he's batting only .214, you should probably reserve him wherever possible. Jeff Keppinger , who splits starts with Geoff Blum at third base, also has a stiff back. As a part-time player, he barely deserves a roster spot even in NL-only leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Astros face four left-handed pitchers in their seven games, but with Keppinger hurting, Blum might continue to start anyway.
Lineup Changes: The Astros have flipped Tejada and Hunter Pence in the lineup, batting Tejada second and Pence fifth. Based on their abilities at this stage of their careers, with Pence offering more power than Tejada, the move makes sense. Also, with Matsui hurting, Michael Bourn has moved back to the leadoff spot. If continues to bat there, he should steal more bases and score more runs.

Kansas City Royals
Schedule: @CLE3, DET3
Heating Up: John Buck has hit well enough over his last five games -- 7-for-15 with three home runs -- to steal some at-bats from Miguel Olivo , but not the starting job. He won't have much appeal in mixed leagues until he can get regular at-bats. Also, Mike Jacobs has done most of the damage in the middle of the Royals lineup, hitting three home runs in his last five games.
Cooling Off: Most of the Royals lineup has struggled, but David DeJesus has probably contributed the least. He's 0-for-9 over his last two games and has only two extra-base hits all season.
Injury Concerns: Alex Gordon will miss the next three months after having surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right hip, making him a candidate to cut in mixed leagues. Mark Teahen will take over full time at third base, making him even less likely to gain eligibility at second base. He loses some sleeper appeal, obviously, but he's still hitting well enough to use in mixed leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Royals face two left-handers to begin the week before a string of four straight right-handers. Nobody figures to lose at-bats, though.
Lineup Changes: Willie Bloomquist played right field in the Royals' depleted lineup Saturday, though Mitch Maier might also get some time out there. Neither player should matter outside of deeper AL-only leagues. DeJesus continues to hit third and Mike Aviles second, though neither player has benefited much from the change.

L.A. Angels
Schedule: DET3, SEA3
Heating Up: Bobby Abreu has gone throwback with four stolen bases in his last three games. He's also batting .400 (8-for-20) over his last five. Torii Hunter , meanwhile, has three homers in his last five games, batting .412 (7-for-17) during that stretch.
Cooling Off: After a hot spring, Kendrys Morales hasn't taken to the starting role yet, batting .244 without a single home run. Don't bother with him in mixed leagues.
Injury Concerns: Vladimir Guerrero will miss a month with a torn pectoral muscle. Juan Rivera and Gary Matthews will both likely get more at-bats as a result, but neither has the upside to make a difference outside of AL-only leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Angels have two left-handers on the slate this week but few lineup combinations with Guerrero going on the DL. Their lineup should remain more or less the same regardless of matchups.
Lineup Changes: With the injury to Guerrero, Abreu has dropped to the cleanup spot, and Maicer Izturis , who has played more shortstop than Erick Aybar lately, has hit third. Even in such a favorable spot, the slap hitter doesn't matter outside of AL-only leagues.

Best Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Orioles @BOS1, CHW3, TEX3
2. Astros CIN1, LAD3, MIL3
3. Rangers @TOR3, @BAL3
4. White Sox @BAL3, TOR3
5. Dodgers @HOU3, @COL3

L.A. Dodgers
Schedule: @HOU3, @COL3
Heating Up: Orlando Hudson hit for the cycle last week and is batting .500 (10-for-20) over his last five games -- no surprise, really, since he bats in front of Manny Ramirez . You could do worse than to start him in a mixed league.
Cooling Off: Casey Blake is batting .176 (3-for-17) over his last five games and might lose a start or two with Blake DeWitt back up in the majors.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Dodgers face only one left-handed pitcher this week, but they don't have any platoon players.
Lineup Changes: With Rafael Furcal getting a day off Saturday, Andre Ethier moved up to second in the batting order, back in front of Ramirez, and homered twice. He did most of his damage last year in front of Ramirez, so his Fantasy owners would like this move to become more than just a one-time deal. Ethier will probably drop back behind Ramirez, though, when Furcal returns.

Milwaukee Brewers
Schedule: @PHI3, @HOU3
Heating Up: Ryan Braun hit his first home run Friday and has hit safely in four straight games, so he's probably coming around. Bill Hall has hit safely in all 10 games this season, batting .313. He'll need to hit for power before he becomes a viable mixed-league option, though.
Cooling Off: Most of the Brewers lineup has struggled, but especially Prince Fielder (2-for-17 over his last five) and J.J. Hardy (3-for-20 over his last five). The two remain must-starts, though.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Brewers face two left-handers this week, not that any of their hitters figures to lose at-bats against them.
Lineup Changes: None

Minnesota Twins
Schedule: @BOS2, @CLE3
Heating Up: One day after hitting for the cycle, including a grand slam, Jason Kubel started for the first time against a left-handed pitcher Saturday and had four hits again. He's now batting .366 and deserves a roster spot in all leagues.
Cooling Off: Carlos Gomez doesn't seem to want a starting job in the Twins outfield. He's 1-for-13 over his last five games, though his primary competition, Delmon Young , hasn't fared much better.
Injury Concerns: Joe Mauer (back) will likely begin a rehab assignment this week, but you should keep him reserved for at least one more week in Fantasy.
Platoon Possibilities: The Twins face only one left-hander this week, but they play only five games total. With the way Kubel has played lately, they no longer have any clear platoon players.
Lineup Changes: Brendan Harris is hitting .435 and has begun to steal at-bats from Alexi Casilla and Nick Punto . None of the three matter in mixed leagues as long as they split at-bats. With his hot streak, Kubel has moved into the cleanup spot, only adding to his Fantasy appeal.

N.Y. Mets
Schedule: @STL3, NYM3
Heating Up: Carlos Delgado has hit two of his three home runs in his last four games and is batting .310. Another aging wonder, Luis Castillo , went 2-for-4 Saturday to bring his batting average to .520 (13-for-25) over his seven-game hitting streak. He no longer steals enough bases to help much in mixed leagues, though.
Cooling Off: After a hot start, Daniel Murphy is batting .217 (5-for-23) over his last six games and, as a result, lost a start to Gary Sheffield even against a right-hander.
Injury Concerns: Brian Schneider had to go on the DL with a back strain Friday. His replacement, Ramon A. Castro , has enough power potential to make an impact in NL-only leagues.
Platoon Possibilities: The Mets face only one left-hander this week, meaning Sheffield doesn't stand to get many at-bats. Murphy and Ryan Church do and remain must-starts in NL-only leagues.
Lineup Changes: None

Worst Five Hitting Schedules
Team Schedule
1. Giants SD2, @ARI3
2. Tigers @LAA3, @KC3
3. Athletics @NYY3, TB3
4. Red Sox BAL1, MIN2, NYY3
5. Twins @BOS2, @CLE3

N.Y. Yankees
Schedule: OAK3, @BOS3
Heating Up: Robinson Cano , again a must-start in Fantasy after a down season, is batting .357 (10-for-28) with two home runs during a seven-game hitting streak.
Cooling Off: After a quick start in his return from shoulder surgery, Jorge Posada is batting .118 (2-for-17) over his last five games.
Injury Concerns: Just when you thought the news for the Yankees couldn't get any worse following the loss of Xavier Nady , potentially for the season, the Yankees believe Hideki Matsui has regressed in his recovery from offseason knee surgery. He has reported fluid in his left knee -- never a good sign -- and was out of the starting lineup both Friday and Saturday (though he did pinch hit Saturday). He's hitting only .179, so this latest episode gives you all the excuse you need to bench him in mixed leagues. As for the Yankees, at least Alex Rodriguez has begun taking batting practice and has a chance of returning before the end of the month.
Platoon Possibilities: The Yankees face four left-handers this week, but they don't have anybody who stands to lose much value because of it. Melky Cabrera might steal some at-bats from Brett Gardner , but with Matsui hurting, the Yankees might need both Cabrera and Gardner in the lineup at the same time.
Lineup Changes: Swisher has taken over for Nady. He's only 2-for-14 over his last four games, but with a .342 batting average and four home runs already, he deserves to start in all leagues. The Yankees trust him as their cleanup hitter, after all.

Oakland Athletics
Schedule: @NYY3, TB3
Heating Up: Jack Cust continues to swing a relatively hot bat for someone who hit only .231 last season. He has at least one hit in every game but one this season, batting .316 with two home runs.
Cooling Off: Most of the Athletics lineup has fallen off, but most notably Jason Giambi , whose batting average has dropped from .368 to .250 over the last five games.
Injury Concerns: Nomar Garciaparra , who has taken over as the team's semi-regular first baseman, has missed two of the team's last three games with a strained calf. His inconsistent at-bats make him no more than a low-end AL-only option anyway. Eric Chavez has missed some time with soreness in his surgically repaired right shoulder. The Athletics say he could return to the lineup Sunday, but he'll need to prove his healthy before you seriously consider activating him.
Platoon Possibilities: The Athletics face three left-handers this week, including two (Andy Pettitte and CC Sabathia) in the seemingly homer-friendly Yankee Stadium. Chavez and Travis Buck might lose at-bats, but everyone else should play as usual.
Lineup Changes: Rajai Davis got a start against a left-handed pitcher with Garciaparra out, but both he and Bobby Crosby figure to lose at-bats if Garciaparra and Chavez return as expected.

Philadelphia Phillies
Schedule: SD1, MIL3, @FLA3
Heating Up: Raul Ibanez hasn't had any problems adjusting to the National League, batting .480 (12-for-25) with three home runs over his last six games.
Cooling Off: Jimmy Rollins has yet to get going at the plate, batting .133 overall. He could break out at any time, though, and remains a must-start. Jayson Werth has gone 1-for-12 over his last three games.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Phillies face two lefties compared to five righties this week, but they don't have anyone in a lefty-righty platoon.
Lineup Changes: None

Pittsburgh Pirates
Schedule: FLA3, @SD3
Heating Up: After a cold start, Nate McLouth has begun to look like his 2008 self, batting .370 (10-for-27) with two home runs over his last seven games. Nyjer Morgan has pretty well established himself as the Pirates' leadoff hitter, batting .333 with three stolen bases. He deserves a look in Rotisserie leagues.
Cooling Off: Nobody, really.
Injury Concerns: Jack Wilson missed his third game in four Saturday with a bruised left finger. He'll probably return sometime next week, but you shouldn't have him active regardless.
Platoon Possibilities: The Pirates face only one left-handed pitcher this week, meaning Craig Monroe will likely start over Brandon Moss only once. Then again, Monroe homered twice in his first start Saturday, and Moss has done nothing notable. If you need a fifth outfielder in a deep NL-only league, you could still give Monroe a look.
Lineup Changes: Ramon Vazquez has started for Wilson, but he has little upside and should remain unowned.

San Diego Padres
Schedule: @PHI1, @SF2, PIT3
Heating Up: Chase Headley has begun to show glimpses of his potential with a four-hit game and three-hit game on consecutive days this past week. Both performances came on the road.
Cooling Off: Brian Giles has begun to show signs of his 38 years of age, batting .129 (4-for-31) over his last seven games.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Padres face three left-handed pitchers this week, meaning Jody Gerut , batting .438 over his last five games, likely won't play enough to impact standard NL-only leagues. His platoon partner, lefty killer Scott Hairston , deserves a look in deeper NL-only leagues.
Lineup Changes: None

San Francisco Giants
Schedule: SD2, @ARI3
Heating Up: Fred Lewis has no homers and only one stolen bases, but he continues to swing a hot bat, batting 5-for-7 (.714) over his last three games.
Cooling Off: Pablo Sandoval is batting only .195 and has yet to play a game at catcher. His pedigree suggests he's a sure .300 hitter, but he's not worth starting until he heats up or gains catcher eligibility. Also, Randy Winn , who made a big impact in Fantasy Week 1, has gone 1-for-16 over his last four games.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Giants face only one left-hander this week, but they play only five games total. Slumping first baseman Travis Ishikawa might make only four starts, but he's not worth using in mixed leagues right now anyway.
Lineup Changes: Perhaps in an effort to get Sandoval going, the Giants have moved him up to third in the lineup and dropped Lewis to fifth.

Seattle Mariners
Schedule: TB3, @LAA3
Heating Up: Endy Chavez continues to swing a hot bat and has remained a fixture in the lineup even with Ichiro Suzuki back from an ulcer. He's batting .383 with four home runs and has become a must-start in AL-only leagues.
Cooling Off: Adrian Beltre and Jose Lopez , two of the more valuable Mariners from a Fantasy perspective, have one home run between them. They're both batting under .200 and should sit for now in mixed leagues.
Injury Concerns: Russell Branyan left Friday with a tight back after sliding into third base. The Mariners expect him to return Tuesday for the start of Fantasy Week 3 (April 20-26), and since they face only one left-hander, he deserves to start in AL-only leagues. Kenji Johjima went on the DL with a hamstring injury, though his replacement, Rob Johnson , doesn't figure to offer much offensively.
Platoon Possibilities: With only one left-hander on the schedule, Mike Sweeney doesn't figure to see much playing time, not that he has much Fantasy significance.
Lineup Changes: With Chavez starting, young power hitter Wladimir Balentien becomes a part-time player. He has virtually no appeal in Fantasy right now.

St. Louis Cardinals
Schedule: NYM3, CHC3
Heating Up: Ryan Ludwick has occasionally had to sit as part of the Cardinals' four-man outfield rotation, but he's arguably off to the best start of anyone in baseball, batting .405 with five home runs. He and Chris Duncan , who's batting .381 and slugging .714, have hit safely in every game they've played.
Cooling Off: Rick Ankiel might begin to lose his footing in the outfield rotation if he doesn't start hitting better. He's batting .105 (2-for-19) over his last five games.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Cardinals face two left-handers this week, making Skip Schumaker again an unreliable start in mixed leagues.
Lineup Changes: Brian Barden has homered three times in his last six games to assume the starting job at third base for now. He shouldn't matter outside of NL-only leagues, though, especially since manager Tony La Russa will likely still find at-bats for Joe Thurston .

Tampa Bay Rays
Schedule: @SEA3, @OAK3
Heating Up: Carlos Pena might never hit for a high batting average, but he looks more like the player who hit 46 home runs two years ago than the one who hit 31 last year, knocking five out of the park in his last seven games. Jason Bartlett looks better than he ever has, raising his batting average to .429 with a 3-for-4 day Saturday. He also has two home runs and five stolen bases, making him a decent stopgap at a weak position.
Cooling Off: Melvin Upton has hit only .182 in his first week since returning from offseason shoulder surgery. He has walked six times and stolen two bases, though, so you can count on him to make a contribution even while struggling.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Rays face three left-handed pitchers in Fantasy Week 3 (April 20-26), which means more at-bats than usual for Gabe Kapler and fewer for Gabe Gross . With less than full-time at-bats, though, neither player matters outside of deeper AL-only leagues.
Lineup Changes: None

Texas Rangers
Schedule: @TOR3, @BAL3
Heating Up: Ian Kinsler is obviously at the top of his game considering he hit for the cycle in a 6-for-6 performance Wednesday. But his double-play partner, rookie Elvis Andrus , has also impressed, hitting .438 (7-for-16) with two stolen bases over his last five games. His lack of power makes him a low-end mixed-league option.
Cooling Off: Chris Davis homered a couple times this past week, but he's still hitting .158 with 18 strikeouts in 38 at-bats. You wouldn't want to cut him, but feel free to sit him if you have viable alternatives.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Rangers have two left-handers on the schedule this week, maybe a third, so you have to think Andruw Jones will start at least twice. Considering he's hitting .546 in 11 at-bats, he should probably start even more than that. Keep him on your radar in AL-only leagues. Conversely, you wouldn't want Hank Blalock active this week in mixed leagues.
Lineup Changes: None

Toronto Blue Jays
Schedule: TEX3, @CHW3
Heating Up: Aaron Hill , who started the year hot, has actually gotten hotter over the last four games, batting .500 (10-for-20) with two home runs. At this point, he should start in all mixed leagues. Adam Lind still has a six-game hitting streak even though his batting average has dropped from .400 to .352 during it.
Cooling Off: Alex Rios is 1-for-19 over his last four games and batting only .204. He has too much upside for you to bench him, though.
Injury Concerns: None
Platoon Possibilities: The Blue Jays face two left-handers this week, which likely prevents Travis Snider and Lyle Overbay from making an impact in mixed leagues. Manager Cito Gaston has suggested Jose Bautista might not continue to platoon with Snider, though. Snider, hitting .321, would become a must-add in mixed leagues if he gets full-time at-bats.
Lineup Changes: None

Washington Nationals
Schedule: ATL3, @NYM3
Heating Up: Ryan Zimmerman is batting .316 (12-for-38) with two home runs during an eight-game hitting streak and is clearly a must-start. Also, Elijah Dukes has taken over as the everyday center fielder and is batting .323 with two home runs.
Cooling Off: Austin Kearns hit a grand slam Saturday, but he's still just 2-for-17 over his last seven games.
Injury Concerns: Cristian Guzman ended up having to go on the DL after straining his left hamstring Monday. Despite his hot start, he's a low-end mixed league-option and not worth stashing unless you just happen to have a free DL slot. Alberto Gonzalez , his replacement, shouldn't matter outside of deeper NL-only leagues. Ronnie Belliard has a day-to-day back injury, but he no longer has a starting job with Anderson Hernandez back in the lineup.
Platoon Possibilities: The Nationals face two left-handed pitchers this week, but nobody figures to lose at-bats against them.
Lineup Changes: The Nationals sent slumping leadoff man and center fielder Lastings Milledge to the minor leagues, giving the arguably more talented Dukes an everyday job. He deserves a roster spot in all leagues. Hernandez has taken over as the leadoff hitter, and Nick Johnson has moved up to bat second in the lineup. He's batting .538 (7-for-13) there and has low-end mixed-league appeal.

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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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