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Roto Roundup: Joe Mauer to Return Next Week, Pablo Sandoval to Catch?,

Daily Scoring Drought Scorecard-15 games

Teams shutout: 2

Teams scoring 1 run: 3

Teams scoring 2 runs: 4

Teams scoring 3 runs: 3

Teams scoring > 3 runs: 18

It was reported last night that the Giants have discussed using Pablo Sandoval at catcher several times per week when he comes off the DL next week. This move would significantly increase his fantasy value in all leagues, assuming he can stay healthy.

Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman will come off the DL on on Tuesday so be sure to activate him as soon as he comes off. The Nationals lineup, and fantasy owners, can't wait for his return. I have a feeling Zimmerman will hit right away once he returns as he is hitting well so far in his rehab.

More Roto Roundup after the jump:

The Twins may be getting their best hitter back next week. Yes, catcher Joe Mauer caught 8 innings last night at Low A Fort Myers, and he has caught 3 days in a row. He homered and walked twice, and there is talk that he could return as early as Tuesday. Those of you in weekly leagues should monitor this situation before making a decision as to activating him in your lineup or not.

Orioles outfielder Nick Markakis had a big game on Friday night, going 2-5 with a HR and 6 RBIs hitting out of the 2 hole. For the season, he has struggled a bit, hitting just ,241-.300-.322 with 5 HRs and 25 RBIs.

Markakis' teammate J.J. Hardy has been a pleasant surprise this season. He went 2-2 with 2 walks, 3 runs, a HR and an RBI on Friday night, and is now hitting 288-.370-.492 with 6 HRs and 19 RBIs in 118 at bats this season. Hardy has been leading off for the Orioles lately and is 13-33 with 4 HRs an 7 RBIs in his last 10 games and has raised his BA by 50 points.

Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak has been slumping of late but he homered last night in 4 at bats, but is hitting just .249-.340-.478 with 11 HRs and 35 RBIs thus far this season. He is on pace for 28 HRs and 89 RBIs this season. Not bad for a 24 year old hitting in Safeco.

Whatever hitting coach Kevin Long did to Curtis Granderson's approach at the plate this season, he should teach to several other hitters. Granderson is having a crazy good season this year, and is hitting .267-.346-.593 with 19 HRs and 44 RBIs thus far. He homered last night and is set to set a career high in HRs this season.

Is Roy Halladay a top 5 pick in 2012? When drafting players in the first round, you want a stud hitter in most cases, but in a season where first round picks like Carlos Gonzalez, Albert Pujols and Hanley Ramirez have underperformed expectations to date, Halladay looks more and more like one of the less risky picks at this point. Halladay shut out the Cubs in 7 innings giving up just 6 hits and striking out 9 to win his 9th game of the season. Halladay lowered his ERA to 2.39, WHIP to 1.05, and now owns a ridiculous 106-14 K/BB rate.

The Mets have a huge decision to make come July 31st as they have to determine who the face of the franchise will be going forward-Jose Reyes or David Wright. Reyes is having a resurgent season this year, hitting .340-.387-.519 with 20 SBs. The Mets should have plenty of teams looking to fill their shortstop positing including the Reds and Giants.

Giants second baseman Freddy Sanchez dislocated his right shoulder and will most likely be placed on the DL. It appears Emmanuelle Burriss will take his spot in the lineup for now. Burriss offers some SB potential, but not much more.

I am not sure if there many hitters having a better season than Red Sox outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury this season. He went 3-5 with 3 runs scored last night and is hitting .316-.376-.482 with 7 HRs, 32 RBIs, 45 runs and 24 SBs thus far. He is on pace for 18 HRs, 82 RBIs, 116 runs and 62 SBs this season. If he can achieve 15 HRs, 70 RBIs, 115 runs and even 50+ SBs, is he a first round pick in 2012?

Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman went 3-5 with a HR, 3 RBIs and 2 runs scored in the Braves 11-4 win over the Astros. Freeman is hitting .279-.344-.429 with 6 HRs and 25 RBIs this season. He hit cleanup for the Braves last night and maybe he will grow comfortable there going forward.

Marlins power hitting outfielder Mike Stanton went 2-4 with a HR and 2 RBIs last night. There aren't many better young power hitters and Stanton is making up for missing some time at the beginning of the season with a leg injury. For the season, he is hitting .261-.346-.571 with 15 HRs, 38 RBIs and 35 runs scored. Many had concerns about his strikeout rate coming into the season, but he has actually lowered his K rate to just under 30% from 34% and increased his walk rate from 8.6% to 10.4%. He is hitting just 42% of his balls in play in the air, but just over 23% of those balls are landing over the fence. Right now he is on pace for a 39-99 season and those calling for a 40 HR season in spring training may look pretty prescient at this point.

Rockies starter Jhoulys Chacin shutout the Dodgers for 8 innings, giving up just 3 hits, 3 walks and striking out 9 to win his 7th game of the season. He lowered his ERA to 2.90 and his WHIP to 1.09 and has struck out 74 batters in 87 innings. Is Chacin the ace of the Rockies staff right now?