Roto Roundup: Michael Morse, Matt Garza, Joe Mauer and Others

Apr 7, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Matt Garza (22) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Washington Nationals at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE

Giants starter Tim Lincecum had a rough start on Wednesday night, and many words were written yesterday about his performance. Here is one written by Grant Brisbee from McCovey Chronicles, SB Nation's Giants blog, where he breaks down every pitch by Lincecum. Not surprisingly, he surmises that the start was bad, but not horrible.

Baseball Nation's Rob Neyer also offered his take on Lincecum yesterday where he discusses Lincecum's drop in velocity and his decision to stop throwing the slider.

Cubs starter Matt Garza looked good in his first start of the season, and yesterday he dominated the Brewers by shutting them out for 8.2 innings on 3 hits, 2 walks and 9 strikeouts. In addition to the 9 strikeouts, he induced 10 ground ball outs, and 18 of his 83 strikes thrown were swinging strikes, so there was a lot of swing and miss in his repertoire again this season.

Brewers starter Zack Greinke was knocked around by the Cubs, of all teams, yesterday. Greinke lasted just 3.2 innings, giving up 8 runs on 9 hits, while striking out 5 and walking just one. Greinke is prone to starts like this, but he will reward fantasy owners for being patient later in the year. So, don't go out and look to deal him after just one bad start.

More Roto Roundup after the jump:

Yesterday, we received bad news on Nationals outfielder Michael Morse, who will now be out of action for the next 6 weeks. The Nationals have been hit hard by injuries so far, as closer Drew Storen will be out till the All Star break, and first round pick Anthony Rendon is out indefinitely with a small fracture in his left ankle. As Steve Gardner from the USA Today tweeted yesterday, I wonder if the Morse news will push the team to call up Bryce Harper a little sooner than planned. For now, the Nationals will activate Rick Ankiel from the DL on Saturday until Harper shows he is ready for the call up.

In my NL-only redraft league, one owner mentioned to me in a phone conversation that he had interest in Dodgers shortstop Dee Gordon, who i own, and he jokingly, I think, offered me Jay Bruce for him. I'd be crazy to turn down that offer, right? I would lose out in stolen bases, but would probably win the power categories in this 5 x 5 league.

Nationals closer Brad Lidge blew his first save, giving up 2 runs on 2 hits and 2 walks to tie the game in the top of the 9th innings yesterday I grabbed Lidge in the NL-only league mentioned above with the thought that he will at least split the save chances in Washington till Drew Storen returns.

Lidge's blown save ruined an excellent start from Nationals starter Gio Gonzalez, who shut out the Reds on 2 hits in 7 innings of work. He struck out 7 and walked none, and lowered his ERA to 3.38.

The middle of the Twins lineup had a great day yesterday, as catcher Joe Mauer hit his first HR of the season, going 3-5 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI. Teammate Justin Morneau hit a monster HR, and went 1-5 with 2 RBI, and Josh Willingham went 3-5 with a HR, 2 runs and an RBI.

Twins starter Francisco Liriano put up a bunch of crooked numbers yesterday, giving up 6 runs, 5 of which were earned, on 7 hits, 3 walks and just 2 strikeouts. He had an excellent spring, and some, including me, felt he would have a nice bounce back season, but he has given up 5 earned runs in each of his starts thus far.

Rangers starter Derek Holland held the Mariners to 2 runs on 5 hits in 7.1 innings yesterday to win his first game of the season. Eleven of his 79 strikes were of the swinging variety, with Holland striking out 8 and walking none.

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