Acting Like A CarLohse

(Photo by Jimmy Simmons/Icon Sportswire)

The All-Star Break is always a bit weird for me. On one hand, it’s nice to have a little break, but I also thoroughly enjoy writing these articles each day and removing myself from that routine for three straight days is…weird. I’m glad to be back doing it – even if it’s just two guys today – and let’s dive into what in the world is going on with Carlos Martinez after he produced a horrid line of 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks against the Cubs last night. I’ve been talking about Martinez through the year as one of those arms that will have his stumbles but will be more often good than bad. Take the start of the year, having a rough debut outing before spinning off six games of 3 ER total. However, it’s been a tough stretch since returning from the DL and I’m starting to question his repertoire. He’s introduced a cutter this season is supposed to be the solution to everything but is a 10% whiff rate 56% zone rate pitch really helping? His walk rate has climbed to 11% as his whiff rate has fallen to 11%. You would think lowering his changeup and slider usage would effectively bump their whiff rates – i.e. use them more as putaway offerings with the cutter taking the role as strike getter – yet both have come down to sub 15% levels after hinting at 20% last season. It just doesn’t add up. He only earned 3 whiffs in 90 pitches in last night’s game – 21 CSW – and I’m starting to believe that I overlooked CarMart’s questionable approach this year in my previous rankings. Expect him hovering #30 or so on Monday.

Let’s talk about the other guy:

Kyle Hendricks – 4.2 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Right, Hendricks also pitched. I don’t have much to add here as I’ve been a bit down on Hendricks for a while now. All but one of his last nine games have come with five strikeouts or fewer. That’s bad. He needed 113 pitches in this effort to not even escape the fifth frame and I noticed something during this one (of course I watched it, it was the only game). The talk has been around his sinker not being consistent like last year, but it seems to me that his changeup is the real problem. Too many slow balls are bad misses where batters can elect to resist early on in the delivery. While it’s still effective when executed, it makes batters more comfortable against the sinker, more aggressive to hack at the sub 88mph “heater”. It might be the crux of the problem and I’m not sure it’s going to get fix any time soon.

Today’s Streamer

Dereck Rodriguez vs. Oakland Athletics – Not too many options today, though I’m a fan of Dereck’s shtick and I think I’m cool rolling with him even against the solid A’s offense.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Nick Kingham vs. Cincinnati Reds He’s still owned in just 12% of leagues. I’m thinking that PL readers make up half of it.

Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer

Ivan Nova vs. Cincinnati Reds – There may be a better one popping up as we get closer to it as teams are still solidifying their weekend rotations. I don’t love this one, but you could get a Super Nova and that’s cool.

Game of the Day

Noah Syndergaard vs. Domingo German Thor is back and maybe German isn’t terrible. Also pumped to see Stephen Strasburg back in action, Dylan Bundy get a stab at redemption, and Jameson Taillon aim for another 10 strikeout game.

Nick Pollack

Founder of PitcherList.com. Rotographs and Washington Post contributor and has worked with CBS Sports, Grantland, and SB Nation. Former pitching coach and Brandeis alum.

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Comments


Let’s Play Two

Hey Nick. Following up on my post in response to your reply about Cole or Thor and Verlander or Strasburg in the previous roundup:

When you say Cole and Verlander are “safer” are you referring to the durability issues of Thor and Stras? Do you like Cole and Verlander, because you believe they should put up better stats ROS or that they aren’t as injury-prone as the others?

Also, not sure what you mean by Thor if I need a bigger “Hail Mary” play. You have Cole ranked higher than Thor. Can you elaborate for me?

Nick Pollack

Sure thing!

Verlander and Cole are safer as they have a higher floor given lack of injuries. A little more stability than Thor and Strasburg given their already tumultuous seasons.

Thor has a higher ceiling than Cole, though, which means that he’s a bigger “Hail Mary” play if you need to make up a lot of ground and are willing to take a bigger risk for a possible larger reward.

Jim

H2H Categories QS league, I just dropped Newcomb for Wheeler. According to your ranks, I made a grave mistake but being a Newcomb owner for the past few months has beenhard. There have been good days with Newcomb, but mostly bad days where I am reminded of regression.

Wheeler seems to be a hot topic around here for the past month and his numbers have been better than his ownership rates.

Newcomb probably gets claimed, but I am okay with that. What say you?

Nick Pollack

I wouldn’t call two pitchers just two spots apart a “grave mistake.”

They are pretty even in my book right now, so go with your gut here.

J.C. Mosier

I know that I wouldn’t have picked up Kingham if not for your support of him. Thanks again!

Speaking of Nick’s Favorites, do you think that Fulmer’s oblique puts him out of action until September? Is he now droppable in a 12-team league?

Harry

Any concerns about the SIX DAYS OF THUNDERSTORMS rolling into Cincinnati right now? It certainly seems like the Reds and their opponents are gonna lose most of their playing time this week, and I don’t see anyone talking about it. I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!

Thanks Nick. Good to be back from the break. Love reading your roundup each morning…

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