September 01, 2008

Wondering who has the most favorable matchups this week? How about the most unfavorable? Each Monday, we'll take a look at every position on the field and give you a guy who looks to be in line for big-time numbers, as well as a guy who could be in line for big-time disappointment.

Note: All stats, unless otherwise noted, run through Saturday's games.

Make sure you play ... Jason Varitek, Boston Red Sox

Perhaps Varitek isn't finished just yet. After horrendous months of June and July, he has has put up respectable digits this month, particularly of late, as he's batting .343 with three homers over the last two weeks.

Honorable mention: John Baker, Florida Marlins (.308-1-6 over the last two weeks)

Don't expect much from ... Jesus Flores, Washington Nationals

Flores has been a surprise source of fantasy production this year, but that hasn't been the case lately, as he's batted a mere .181 in August, including a 1-for-24 stretch over the past six games.

Honorable mention: Ivan Rodriguez, New York Yankees (.203 BA since joining Yankees)

Make sure you play ... Billy Butler, Kansas City Royals

Butler has been swinging a hot stick of late, and with the Royals slated to face five southpaws this week, his hot hitting should continue. Billy has a career .332 average and .948 OPS against lefties.

Honorable mention: Joey Votto, Cincinnati Reds (4-for-4 Sunday; .382, 18 RBI in August)

Don't expect much from ... Chad Tracy, Arizona Diamondbacks

Tracy was fantastic in July, but August was a different story. He is batting .129 with no RBI over the last two weeks.

Honorable mention: Kevin Millar, Baltimore Orioles (.190 BA over the last two weeks)

Make sure you play ... Martin Prado, Atlanta Braves

Prado has been playing first base with Casey Kotchman on the bereavement, and now, the restricted list. He's made the most of his opportunity, hitting .404 over the last two weeks.

Honorable mention: Anderson Hernandez, Washington Nationals (.462 over the last two weeks)

Don't expect much from ... Tadahito Iguchi, San Diego Padres

Iguchi has been a waste of space for the Pads all year, and they've apparently finally had enough, as the rumor is that they will release him on Monday.

Honorable mention: Jeff Kent, Los Angeles Dodgers (could possibly be done for the year with knee issues)

Make sure you play ... Emmanuel Burriss, San Francisco Giants

Burress has been hitting (.417 over the last two weeks) and drawing walks (10 walks, three strikeouts over that time), which has given him the opportunity to do what he does best -- steal bases. He has three swipes in his last 13 games and could be a nice source of cheap speed for those in need.

Honorable mention: Cristian Guzman, Washington Nationals (.459 over the last two weeks)

Don't expect much from ... Nomar Garciaparra, Los Angeles Dodgers

I hate to pick on Garciaparra, as this is the second week in a row he's been listed in this space, but he had just two hits and no RBI this past week.

Honorable mention: Juan Castro, Baltimore Orioles (.161 BA over the last two weeks)

Make sure you play ... Ty Wigginton, Houston Astros

No one is going to miss August more than Wiggington. He hit his 12th homer of the month Sunday, and had a .379 average and 26 RBI to go along with those 12 bombs.

Honorable mention: Willy Aybar, Tampa Bay Rays (.327 BA over the last two weeks)

Don't expect much from ... Andy LaRoche, Pittsburgh Pirates

LaRoche certainly doesn't want his base hit Sunday changed to an error (which would give CC Sabathia a no-hitter), as it is just Andy's 10th hit in 74 at-bats since joining his brother in the Steel City.

Honorable mention: Bill Hall, Milwaukee Brewers (.208 BA this month)

Make sure you play ... Jayson Werth, Philadelphia Phillies

Werth has a .381-4-10 line over the last two weeks, and with the Phils slated to face three southpaws this week, Jayson should be able to continue batting the ball all over the park. He boasts a .970 OPS against lefties in 2008.

Honorable mention: Mike Cameron, Milwaukee Brewers (.410-2-12, 4 SB over the last two weeks)

Don't expect much from ... Rick Ankiel, St. Louis Cardinals

Ankiel did next to nothing in August, and he has revealed that the abdominal pain he dealt with earlier this month is bothering him again. Don't expect much out of Ankiel in September.

Honorable mention: Nate McLouth, Pittsburgh Pirates (.148 over the last two weeks)

Make sure you play ... Randy Johnson, Arizona Diamondbacks

The Big Unit has turned back the clock in the second half, as he holds a pristine 1.82 ERA to go along with a 0.98 WHIP and 53 Ks in 54 1/3 innings since the break.

Honorable mention: Glen Perkins, Minnesota Twins (6-1, 3.71 ERA, 1.29 WHIP in the second half)

Don't expect much from ... Ian Snell, Pittsburgh Pirates

Any way you slice it, Snell has been a huge disappointment this year. He has been particularly awful on the road (7.07 ERA), where he will make both of his starts this week.

Honorable mention: Sidney Ponson, New York Yankees (8.71 ERA over his last four starts)

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