KEY 2017 Fantasy Baseball Rankings  - June

These are the Monthly Rankings for the Playbook PRO. The rankings will be updated on the first of every month for the duration of the major league season.

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Jon Lester (L) Headshot

Lester will be on the mound for Game 6 of the NLCS against the Dodgers on Saturday, if the Cubs can extend the series with a win Thursday, Carrie Muskat of reports.

Lester will not be available in relief Thursday while he preps for a potential Game 6 outing. This start would come on five days of rest for the left-hander, and he will likely go up against Rich Hill yet again, if the matchup comes to fruition. During Sunday's Game 2 start, Lester allowed one earned run off three hits and five walks, while striking out a pair in 4.2 innings.
5:23 pm (EST)
Curtis Granderson (L) Headshot

Granderson is not in the lineup for Game 5 of the NLCS against the Cubs on Thursday.

As has been the case all postseason, Granderson will head to the bench with a southpaw (Jose Quintana) toeing the rubber for the opposition. Enrique Hernandez will start in left field and bat sixth in his stead. Granderson is coming off an 0-for-4 night with four strikeouts, and is just 1-for-15 (.066) so far in the postseason, so manager Dave Roberts will probably turn elsewhere if he needs a pinch hitter in the latter stages of Thursday's game.
4:32 pm (EST)
Yasmani Grandal (B) Headshot

Grandal is out of the lineup for Game 5 of the NLCS against the Cubs on Thursday.

Grandal will head to the bench for the fourth time in this series as Austin Barnes is set to catch Clayton Kershaw and bat seventh in the lineup. Over the course of the postseason, Grandal is just 0-for-5 at the plate, with three walks and two strikeouts.
4:30 pm (EST)
Justin Verlander (R) Headshot

Verlander will start Game 6 of the ALCS against the Yankees on Friday, Brian McTaggart of reports.

This is why Houston acquired Verlander at the end of August. With the Astros down 3-2 in a best-of-seven set, Verlander will get the ball as he looks to keep the team's World Series hopes alive. He tossed a complete game gem in Game 2 of the ALCS against New York, striking out 13 batters and allowing just one run on five hits and a walk to earn the win.
4:11 pm (EST)
Ian Happ (B) Headshot

Happ is not in the lineup for Game 5 of the NLCS against the Dodgers on Thursday.

Over the course of the playoffs, Happ is just 0-for-6 at the plate with five strikeouts and a walk, and will remain on the bench for another elimination game against Clayton Kershaw. Albert Almora will patrol center and Kyle Schwarber gets the nod in left.
3:24 pm (EST)
Jason Heyward (L) Headshot

Heyward is not in the lineup for Game 5 of the NLCS against the Dodgers on Thursday.

Manager Joe Maddon is going with a righty-heavy lineup against southpaw Clayton Kershaw, so Heyward will open Thursday's must-win game against the Dodgers on the bench as Ben Zobrist takes over in right field. Heyward could enter as a late-game defensive replacement if the Cubs are ahead.
3:22 pm (EST)
Jon Jay (L) Headshot

Jay is out of the lineup for Thursday's game against the Dodgers.

Jay will retreat to the bench for Game 5 of the NLCS as the club goes up against left-hander Clayton Kershaw. In his place, Kyle Schwarber earns the nod in left while Albert Almora will start in center and bat atop the order. Jay will likely enter the game as a defensive substitute or pinch hitter in the latter stages of the contest.
3:20 pm (EST)
Shawn Kelley (R) Headshot

Kelley (elbow) said he expects to be healthy for the start of the 2018 season, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports.

Kelley's season prematurely ended in September after it was revealed that bone chips in his right elbow were causing inflammation. The good news is he seems to have avoided any structural damage, and it doesn't look like he'll require surgery at this point. Kelley opted for a stem cell injection instead, and he'll now wait for the inflammation to subside before hopefully picking up his offseason routine in time to get ready for the start of next season. He was limited to just 26 innings in 2017 due to injuries, compiling an unsightly 7.27 ERA and 1.54 WHIP during that span.
2:34 pm (EST)
Michael Brantley (L) Headshot

Brantley will miss the next 4-to-5 months after undergoing right ankle surgery Wednesday, Jordan Bastian of reports.

Although Brantley appeared on the ALDS roster against the Yankees -- and recorded a decent amount of at-bats -- the outfielder needed surgery to stabilize the ligaments in his ankle ahead of next season. This places him on a timetable to optimistically return to full baseball activities right around the start of spring training. Cleveland also needs to decide whether to pick up his $12 million club option for 2018, or buy him out for $1 million, which will have to be decided three days after the World Series concludes.
11:13 am (EST)
Jonathan Villar (B) Headshot

Villar has been dealing with an apparent injury, as his left ring finger was in a splint Wednesday, The Brewer Nation blog reports.

There has been no word from the club on Villar's status at this point, but there doesn't seem to be any real concern regarding his availability for next season. During the 2017 season, Villar was barely seeing time in the field over the course of the homestretch, and slashed just .241/.293/.372 in 122 games.
10:57 am (EST)
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