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Correa hit his 15th home run of the season on Saturday but it was his first since July 8th and only second of the month. Despite just a .238 average on the month, he has driven in 14 runners and scored 11 runs. Those are certainly valuable counting stats and have helped pace him towards over 100 RBI for the season. He will try to build off his multi-hit performance tomorrow when the Astros take on righty Tim Lincecum and Correa has a very healthy .880 OPS against right-handed pitching this season.
With his rehab progressing well, Ryan Zimmerman is in line to be activated by the Nationals on Tuesday. Zimmerman's return may have a domino effect as players will have to be shuffled. Daniel Murphy has been playing first base with rookie Trea Turner at second in his absence. Turner also logged time in the outfield at Triple-A in an attempt to stay with the team for the rest of the year but if he stays, could Michael Taylor be optioned? It remains to be seen but when Zimmernan returns we will know more. Of course these decisions may occur following when weekly leagues lock on Monday so be careful with Zimmerman, Turner and Taylor in the week ahead. Zimmeran is hitting .221/.284/.402 through 74 games this year with 12 home runs and 38 RBI.
Captain Kirk provided plenty of fireworks tonight, as he hit his sixth and seventh home runs of the year and drove in four against the Cubs. Prior to tonight’s game, the 28-year-old was hitting just .083 in the month of July, so tonight’s breakout game is a bit of a surprise for everyone. Nieuwenhuis has started in just one out of the last four Brewers games and is simply a bench player for Milwaukee moving forward. Feel free to ignore him in all fantasy formats moving forward.
Gattis had a big day and singlehandedly propelled the Astros to victory on Saturday. His four RBI tied a season best and was the 10th game in which he has recorded multiple RBI on the season. July has been his worst month of his disappointing season as entered today with just a .583 OPS for the month. He will hope to use this to kick start his season when the Astros take on Tim Lincecum tomorrow, though he has a poor .620 OPS against right-handed pitching this season.
Davies made easy work out of a tricky Cubs lineup today, as he allowed just one extra-base hit in his six and a third innings pitched. He also allowed just five base runners, which is most certainly a recipe for success against Chicago. The 23-year-old hasn’t posted great strikeout totals in his last four games, striking out just 15 hitters, but he’s now won two out of his last three starts and has allowed just three earned runs in his last 20 innings pitched. His next start will come at home against the Diamondbacks on Thursday. Davies should be heavily considered for daily fantasy purposes in his next start as the Diamondbacks are one of the worst teams Major League Baseball in terms of runs scored away from home in 2016.
Lucroy slugged his 13th home run of the season off of John Lackey in the first inning which gave the Brewers an early 2-0 lead. He also was able to reach base twice via walks and ended up scoring an additional run when Kirk Nieuwenhuis went deep in the eighth inning. Lucroy’s name has been frequently dropped in trade talks, and it’s easy to see why teams are interested in him this year as he’s hitting .302 with 13 homers, 50 runs batted in, and an OPS of .856 this season. The 30-year-old has hit the ball well on a consistent basis all year and there’s no reason to believe that he will slow down anytime soon. He’ll face off against left-hander Jon Lester tomorrow who was fantastic in his first start since the All-Star break when he allowed just one earned run in seven and two-thirds innings pitched.
In his second game back off the disabled list, Fowler went hitless and struck out twice against Zach Davies and the Brewers bullpen. The 2016 All-Star sat out for over a month with a hamstring injury and celebrated his return yesterday by homering and driving in three runs. The 30-year-old is hitting .293 with eight home runs, 31 runs batted in, and a .895 OPS this season. He should continue to be a great fantasy option in center field in all formats for the rest of the season. Fowler will be hitting from the left side of the plate of Sunday against Junior Guerra, who has allowed left-handed batters to hit just .192 against him this season.
All of the damage done to Lackey came via the longball, as he allowed a two-run homer to Jonathan Lucroy in the bottom of the first and then allowed a solo shot to Kirk Nieuwenhuis in the fourth inning. Lackey has now lost in three out of his last four starts, allowing 12 earned runs in his last 20 innings pitched. The 37-year-old has struggled recently with home runs allowed, as he’s surrendered at least one home run in each of his last seven starts. Lackey continues to struggle on the road, where he has a 4.67 ERA this season. He’s a much better pitcher for fantasy purposes at Wrigley Field, which is where he will make his next start on Friday against the White Sox. Lackey’s home ERA is 2.84, so he could be a nice option for daily fantasy purposes.
An embarrassing incident in which it is reported Chris Sale cut-up the team's throwback uniforms from 1976. Sale did not want to wear them as they are uncomfortable. The White Sox allow the starting pitcher's to normally select which uniforms the team wears but the team was supposed to wear this particular uniform for an MLB promotion. With Sale on the trade block and not wanting to leave the team, this may have been frustration boiling over or just a monumental mistake. Suffice it say, the team sent him home due to insubordination as per league rules. There is no report as to when Sale will make his next start for the team.
At the beginning of the year, the news of Aaron Nola being demoted would have seemed far-fetched. But Nola has lost his last five decisions and has allowed at least five or more runs in six of his last seven starts. Nola only lasted four innings on Saturday with six runs allowed to push his ERA to 4.75 on the year. He is now 5 - 9 but has a a 116:26 K:BB rate with a 3.05 FIP. Whether the problem is mechanical or mental, a stint in the minors may allow him to regain confidence like Matt Shoemaker earlier this year. There is no official word but the Phillies will try to do their best to get Nola back on track.