Now is the time of the season to be the most diligent. As some owners are losing interest in the baseball marathon and gearing up for their fantasy football draft, now is the time to make your move. With their lack of focus, you can move up the standings.

The long baseball season takes focus and dedication, and it is easy to refocus your attention elsewhere when your team is not living up to expectations. The best part about fantasy sports is that there’s always another sport and another opportunity just around the corner if the last one didn’t work out like you planned. But if you are in the hunt, now is the time to be vigilant scanning the waiver wire and making trade offers that can move you into the money or towards the championship.

Of note, the Texas Rangers are scheduled to play only five games this week while Arizona, Baltimore, Boston, both Chicago teams, Kansas City, Milwaukee, New York (AL), and San Francisco are all on the docket for seven. All other teams are scheduled to play six games this week.

Now are the projected two-start pitchers for this week. For those of you in leagues who require you to set your lineup at the beginning of the week, these are guys you should strongly consider:

American League
BAL Brian Matusz, Jake Arrietta
BOS Jon Lester, Daisuke Matsuzaka
CWS Edwin Jackson, Freddy Garcia
CLE Justin Masterson
DET Armando Galarraga
KC Sean O’Sullivan, Bryan Bullington
LAA Ervin Santana
MIN Scott Baker
NYY Dustin Moseley, Phil Hughes
OAK Vin Mazzaro
SEA Doug Fister
TB David Price
TEX none
TOR Ricky Romero
National League
ARI Ian Kennedy, Barry Enright
ATL Mike Minor
CHC Carlos Zambrano, Ryan Dempster
CIN Mike Leake
COL Ubaldo Jimenez
FLA Anibal Sanchez
HOU Bud Norris
LAD Vicente Padilla
MIL Chris Narveson, Manny Parra
NYM Mike Pelfrey
PHI Kyle Kendrick
PIT Jeff Karstens
SD Wade LeBlanc
SF Madison Bumgarner, Tim Lincecum
STL Chris Carpenter
WAS Stephen Strasburg

Rick’s Picks

Five best bets for double-start pitchers this week

1. Chris Carpenter is a must play any week he gets two starts. The first matchup is a tough divisional battle (at CIN) but the second should be a walk in the park (vs CHC). You have to play Carpenter if he is on your squad.

2. Stephen Strasburg gets two teams who are already looking towards next season at home (vs FLA, vs ARZ). Neither has an offense that will do much and the boy wonder is likely to strike out a ton this week. This is a guy you want.

3. Ervin Santana gets two great matchups at home (vs KC, vs TOR). The Angels are desperate to catch up in the A.L. West, so two wins here would go a long way to helping the team’s playoff chances and your fantasy team’s stats.

4. Wade LeBlanc gets two weak offenses (at SF, vs PIT). The Padres continue to defy logic and win games. This week should be no different.

5. Jon Lester is a heck of a pitcher, but gets two tough teams on the road (at NYY, at TEX) this week. Neither matchup is favorable, but this kind of pitcher is the kind you have to play.

Rick Milleman is the head fantasy baseball contributor at Check his annual player projections included in the Cheatsheet Compiler & Draft Buddy to help draft your championship team.

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