Box Score Bits: Bautista's pop continues


Washington Nationals right-hander Stephen Strasburg was scheduled to start Tuesday night but was scratched just before game time because of right shoulder inflammation. The rookie with the prized arm had an MRI and X-ray, and it's uncertain when he will pitch next. Miguel Batista and three relievers helped shut out the Atlanta Braves, as Tommy Hanson is 1-4 in his past seven starts.

Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista smacked two more home runs Tuesday, becoming the first player to reach 30. No other major league player has more than 25. Bautista went 4-for-4 with five RBIs against the Baltimore Orioles and is on pace for -- get this -- 48 home runs and 121 RBIs. Honestly, I think we're past the point of selling high. Bautista should top 40 homers at this point.

Houston Astros right-hander Brett Myers stuck out 12 in going the distance in a 6-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs. Myers allowed four hits, including a Tyler Colvin home run, and remains on pace for a career year. He's still, somehow, available in 66.5 percent of ESPN standard leagues.

Cincinnati Reds third baseman Scott Rolen missed nine games with a hamstring injury and returned Monday, but went hitless in three at-bats. On Tuesday, Rolen was 4-for-4 (all singles) with a sacrifice fly and three RBIs. If you were benching Rolen, or dropped him, get him active again. He's on ESPN's most-dropped list but shouldn't be.

Chicago White Sox right-hander Gavin Floyd is a noted second-half pitcher, but after tossing seven shutout innings against the Seattle Mariners, he's lowered his ERA for the 11th consecutive start. Floyd, still only 6-8, is wisely owned in 92.7 percent of leagues.

Minnesota Twins third baseman Danny Valencia stroked four hits for the second consecutive game against the Kansas City Royals, lifting his season batting average to .400 in 90 at-bats. Valencia has 14 hits in 19 at-bats in a four-day span and certainly warrants playing over Nick Punto. Mixed-league owners looking for batting average should be on alert.