It took him eight starts, but Justin Verlander finally had that one dominant start that gets you to heavily consider picking him up after going 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks against the…Tampa Bay Rays?! I watched some of this start, and he started off the game getting some calls he didn’t deseve as he struck out the side, finishing with a Curve in the dirt that would have been ball four. Then nearly every other K was on a Fastball that got a bunch of the plate, and the Rays just weren’t squaring up. It all just seemed to go Verlander’s way instead of him suffocating his opponents with pure stuff. But let’s imagine that the Rays aren’t a below average ballclub, I’m still not touching Justin. He’s way too volatile and he hadn’t fanned over 6 batters in all of seven starts prior to this one. If you need a prayer in the K department, fine I don’t blame you, but for the rest of us there are plenty of other pitches in the sea.
Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:
John Lackey – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. Just as a heads up, Lackey has a near 4.00 xFIP to go with his sub 3.00 ERA. Just sayin’, enjoy playing his matchups well the rest of the way and all should be good.
Chris Tillman – 8.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. So Tillman is on a roll and you already know that you should probably get on board if you’re desperate for some ERA loving in a deep 12 teamer. I’m still staying away otherwise, FYI. Also, just in case y’all thought I forgot about it, this start has a super impressive Minimalist Score of 6. It doesn’t beat Alfredo Simon’s absurd 4 count in April, but it’s one of the lowest we’ve seen in ages.
Corey Kluber – 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Aces.
Chris Archer – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 11 Ks. Gonna.
Jon Lester – 8.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 14 Ks. Ace. Holy hot damn pecan pie on a Tuesday! Lester clearly deserves his #20 ranking, but I don’t see a path for him to go much higher. Who would you bounce to make room? Thor? Harvey? Gray? Yeah, I can’t do that.
Anthony DeSclafani – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Tony Disco ain’t stopping as long as the music is poppin’. You can though, and I highly recommend it.
Lance McCullers – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. He’s getting the GIF Breakdown treatment and that article will be up in the afternoon tomorrow. The quicky sticky: He wasn’t dominant but his stuff generates outs like their J-O-B and he was willing to pound the zone in favor of getting more of the plate. I’m a fan.
R.A. Dickey – 8.0 IP, 0 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. When Tulo came over, Dickey greeted him and gave a warning that Canadians called shortstops “way stations”. Don’t trust a knuckleballer.
Jake Peavy – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. I don’t care if he makes me a friendship bracelet, I’m still not going to close my eyes and fall back into your arms. Awww you made it in Blue? NO I STAND BY MY CHOICE.
Patrick Corbin – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Our Call Boy did the job and gave you stats you like across the board. Pitching in Seattle can do that. I’m not nearly as confident in his next start in Washington. That’s where he was tonight. No, I meant…that’s not what people…you’re not wrong, you’re just a [jerk]. I refuse to cuss in front of you guys no matter what italics man does to me.
Tyson Ross – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks. Ross walked four batters? YOU DON’T SAY.
Mike Fiers – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. You flipped a coin and you won. For those are sad with 5 Ks and a 3.00 ERA you really should be happy you have a sub 1.00 WHIP and those above average numbers from Fiers.
Doug Fister – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Uggggh. I just want him to be demoted. Make wayyyyyy! For prince Jooeeyyy! Seriously, I’m a little depressed that the awesome-o talent of Joe Ross is going to be suffocated and sent to Triple A like he stole crayons in kindergarten while Fister is gonna screw everything he can get his hands on. That’s why they call him Fister.
Mike Foltynewicz – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. Don’t tempt me Frodo! Now that Alex Wood is heading off to L.A (and who else knows by the time the stove stops burning), there may be a vacant spot for Folty to fill ROS in the Braves rotation. Y’all know I was in love with Mikey’s stuff before he was demoted to AAA where he was supposed to be turning into a reliever. And now he gives us 8 Ks across 6 IP with a digestible 2 walks and 2 ER. I just…
Jose Quintana – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. See, that’s the Quintana I’m expecting. Hope you didn’t pay for the weird twin that showed up over the weekend.
Colby Lewis – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. In case you didn’t believe that Wins are a stupid stat and should be essentially ignored in your assessment of pitchers, Lewis currently holds a 4.42 ERA and an 11-4 record.
Jesse Chavez – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Chavez is going the way of Lindsay Lohan. You know, after being hot stuff for a while, he’s turning into a bleghmonster. Shudders.
Eddie Butler – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Butler has limited upside, pitches his home games at Coors Field, and doesn’t deserve a spot on your team. This should be the blurb for every Colorado starter.
Garrett Richards – 6.1 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. He showed that he didn’t turn the corner after a three walk effort last time, and this start does no better. I would be worried to start him each night moving forward.
Francisco Liriano – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. Liriano was Singled Out, which is super weird given that he induces the most soft contact in the majors and by a wide margin: 28.6% with Brett Anderson chilling at #2 with 25.3%. Yeah, he’s been that good.
Mike Bolsinger – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Sure that WHIP is horrendous and the 3 Ks are like eating just the wafers of an Oreo, but at least it was only 2 ER? I think he has a better floor than people give him credit with a decent helping of upside.
Tom Koehler – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Fun fact: Koehler had a 3.16 ERA entering this start. Sure, his FIP and xFIP were 4.32/4.29 and he walks 3.16 batters per nine innings while striking out only 6.32 batters…Oh.
Felix Hernandez – 6.2 IP, 7 ER, 12 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. 12 Hits and 7 ER? But he has been on such a good stretch allowing just 4 ER total across his last five starts. I know there will be some serious backlash after this outing – it’s understandable after two similar blowups earlier this season – but there really isn’t much under the hood that’s all too different from his career numbers.
Ervin Santana – 5.2 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. “Don’t be shocked when the ERA and WHIP aren’t glistening this season.” I warned you youngin’! Don’t go down that road! This is as close to a crotchety old woman in a rocking chair as I’ve ever felt. Okay maybe outside of that time I was chilling in my grandmother’s rocking chair, but that was totally different.
Jerome Williams – 4.2 IP, 4 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 K. Is there a worse fantasy pitcher in the majors than Jerome?
Jeremy Guthrie – 5.1 IP, 7 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. I retract that last statement.
Rick Porcello – 2.0 IP, 5 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. I feel bad for the poor fellow who owns Porcello. Well, only a little since he really should know better by now. I mean, seriously have you been watching this season at all? Guy ruins more days than ice cream trunks that have run out of Screwballs. You know it was the best one.
Matt Shoemaker vs. Houston Astros – Not too high on this one, but Shoemaker is coming off a 10 K outing and faces a team that strikes out more times than my friend Ricky at a bar.
Eduardo Rodriguez vs. Tampa Bay – How is he owned in only 41.1% of fantasy leagues? Take advantage of it, hold him onto your roster and love your life as he carves through the Rays’ lineup.
Game of the Day
Chris Sale vs. Boston Red Sox – You know why I’m super stoked about this start? Because the Red Sox have an amazing camera angle for viewing left-handed pitchers (like Eduardo Rodriguez). Get ready to watch just how filthy Sale really is.
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