(Photo by Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire)
I haven’t given Dylan Bundy much of a spotlight thus far but after last night’s start of 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks, Bundy is holding a 31.0% K rate, 1.42 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 2.94 SIERA, and 7.0% BB rate. He deserves your love. Slider usage is up, consistent fastball velocity is there through starts, and he’s boasting and an absurd 17.4% whiff rate through 31.2 innings, reinforced by 23 whiffs last night (Gallows Pole!). To quote Alex Fast: “Was that Dylan or Ted Bundy out there? Cause he murdered the competition and looked sexy while doing it.” I think Bundy will be around #25 on Monday, but there is one problem. The largest problem in Bundy’s past has been fastball command. It’s been great thus far, but we can’t ignore how he’s gone through phases with it in the past. I even remember texting “congrats on finally having an ace” to my O’s friends after his third straight fantastic outing in 2016 and, well, that text looked terrible in retrospect. I’m not saying sell high as I believe the talent is here, but just keep that in mind as you watch his starts moving forward. That’s the key to everything now that his slider usage is where it should be.
Let’s see how every other SP did Friday:
Jhoulys Chacin – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. Chacin faced the Marlins and, well, this isn’t the most surprising result. But maybe because it was a good matchup that we didn’t expect him to actually pull it off…? Don’t overthink it kid.
Jeff Samardzija – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks. It was a DLH situation and Samardzija did a fine job in his limited 80 pitches. Yeah, the walks are stupid but he needed a start to rev the engines and while he does get the Nationals, I think you’re okay making that start. At the very least, the Padres, Braves, Pirates await after and that’s good to hear.
Justin Verlander – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. Aces gonna ace. Yeah I want like one or two more Ks, but I’m a happy man.
Matt Koch – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Is Pepsi okay? Not tonight it wasn’t. It will be tomorrow, though.
Ben Lively – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Look at this, Raggedy Anne actually had a good outing. We should have a Birthday Party to celebrate.
Mike Minor – 5.1 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Yes Minor. Yes. The Mariners are no slouches and you earned 18 whiffs, getting 11 of them on 62 breaking balls. 62 sliders and Curveballs! LOVE IT. Now he gets the A’s and that’s lovely, and I think I’m down for the Indians…unfortunately he gets the Sawx after and that’s annoying. Anyway, please pick him up if you haven’t yet. Streaming Record 14-6.
Daniel Norris – 4.2 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. There was a time that I was really excited about Norris. Now is not that time.
Ivan Nova – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. You’re looking at a Super Nova – the ideal Nova line on any given night. Okay fine, maybe a few Ks short, but on a given night it’s going to be plenty worse than this.
Tyson Ross – 7.2 IP, 1 ER, 1 Hits, 3 BBs, 10 Ks. This was both wonderful and horrifying as Ross was straight up dealing through the first six frames. Then he went over the 100 pitch limit and we thought he was done after seven. Nope, let’s bring him out in the eighth in a no-hitter where we clearly can’t bring him out for the ninth and force him to either finish the inning or give up the first hit. Ross got pulled at 127 pitches after a flyball that had a 99% catch probability landed for a double and it was salvation. He looked terrible in the frame and had no business being there, and it even makes me concerned about the ramifications. Those weren’t just a lot of pitches, those were stressful pitches and I wonder if he’ll not be the same thereafter. Fortunately for us, he gets Coors next, which made him an easy sit anyway, and I’m thinking I’m targetting him for that May 1st start against the Giants.
Max Scherzer – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 9 Ks. Aces gonna ace. This was not nearly as fun as we all thought it would be against Kersh, but whatever.
Michael Wacha – 6.2 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Hey, he was productive! Hey now we need to focus on Waino being consistently poor to make room for Flaherty. Is this the big turnaround for Wacha? No. No it is not.
Chris Archer – 6.2 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Alright Alright Alright! That buy-low window is closing as Archer got it together against the Phillies. His next four starts are O’s, Tigers, Jays, O’s, and I’m thinking it will give us a whole “See? He was fine!” narrative. I think we can take back that TIARA now as you’re all ready to go.
Michael Fulmer – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. This was a little bit of Careful, Icarus situation as Fulmer lost the win in the seventh inning with a stressful frame, but I he absolutely cruised through the first five frames and had no bumps until the seventh save for a Moustakas blast in the sixth. Pirates, Rays, Royals are next and you better keep the course.
Jason Hammel – 9.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. He has a 15.2% K rate, 0.36 HR/9, and 4.61 SIERA. There’s more but I think that’ll do.
Felix Hernandez – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Is this good? Sure. Is this a start that makes me sit down and rethink my stance on Felix? Nope.
Jake Junis – 8.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. I hate to be that guy, but Junis is sporting a 4.02 SIERA with a 19.6% K rate thus far. .169 BABIP, 90.4% LOB rate, and 8.8% HR/FB rate. Just 1 whiff on 42 sliders yesterday – his best pitch. Yikes. Now it’s not all grim. I do think Junis can take steps forward through the year, but I wonder if beating the Tigers twice in his three good outings is swaying people a little more than they should. He won’t take a hit on Monday, but I’m more cautious about him than, say Lopez or Minor.
Sean Newcomb – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. I want more than 5 Ks if I’m rolling with Newcomb – 1.50 be damned – but I’ll take the QS and 3.00 ERA. Still not a huge fan of Newcomb long term, though.
Trevor Bauer – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks. Ehhhh I’m cool with this. Sure I want 1 fewer walks and ER, but the six Ks help and it’s all around fine.
Kyle Hendricks – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. It’s a 1.00 WHIP and 6 Ks – that’s great – but can’t you at least give us one more frame to remove the stench of a 5.40 ERA and give us a QS? But it was in Coors But his velocity was under 86mph on his two-seamer and 86.6mph on his four-seamer. That’s bad.
Drew Pomeranz – 3.2 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. He threw 44 pitches in the first inning and it gassed him for the rest of the outing, even if he struck out the side in the 3rd. I think he needs another start to get fully locked in, but he’ll be a “maybe” against the Jays next week. Should be good to go against the Royals the following time out.
Noah Syndergaard – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. That’s a PQS and I shouldn’t be saying that with Thor, but there it is. After 2016’s .334 BABIP and 2017’s .337 mark, guess what his BABIP is this season? .328. Okay super small sample but it’s weird to see it continue and reinforce the narrative I wrote about the week before the season started. Will that continue? Maybe not, maybe Syndergaard is more hittable than his rough stuff would make it seem.
Brandon Finnegan – 3.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. Four walks to two strikeouts. That’s the Finnegan we know and hate. It’s possible he’ll turn it around at some point, but for now he’s back to being a Young Gun.
Clayton Kershaw – 7.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. This was supposed to be the best matchup of the season with Kershaw vs. Scherzer stealing all the headlines. I spent my Friday evening watching this. And what I saw was Kershaw allow a run on his first three pitches to three different batters and miss his spots early. Then he settled in and was back to normal. I will mention, though, Kershaw’s command isn’t on point like it has been in the past. Remember, he’s a command specialist of the highest order and I can hear the grinding of the cracks. He’s still #1 on Monday but I hate how I’m in any way reconsidering this.
Marco Estrada – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Okay good. You did poorly against the Yankees – that’s going to happen being a flyball guy in the Bronx against that lineup. Now you’re probably free on the wire with…The Red Sox next. Fine, after the next start is when I’ll snag you again.
Jon Gray – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. The struggles continue for Jon Gray. I know many are screaming buy low, I won’t do it. Grounders are down, strikeouts are down, SIERA is up (4.04), home field is the same. Yes, the .372 BABIP and 58.4% are stupid bad but he’s also pitching really badly. He’s not this bad (Stop saying bad) yet when he regresses I don’t see a starter you feel confident starting often.
Sonny Gray – 3.1 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 0 Ks. Hooo boy. Velocity was down to 91mph after averaging 93 last season and prior, command was all over the place, he only got 1 whiff in 73 pitches despite earning a 11.9% prior…This screams DL stint. Belgh, I really thought Gray had this in him and now it looks like he’s in a bad place. Second half Gray is still very appealing to me, but it’s not worth it for the road to get there.
Lance Lynn – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 5 BBs, 7 Ks. I don’t care if he got 11 whiffs just with fastballs, Lynn is clearly not a man to be trusted right now. Maybe at some point, but it looks more like his good fortune from 2017 is coming back to bite him this season.
Trevor Richards – 3.2 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 6 BBs, 5 Ks. Trevor, you taint the name Tracy and Grayson held before you.
Kendall Graveman – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. This was a Graveman Mistake as six Ks came out of nowhere among the pain of a 10+ ERA and 1.40 WHIP. It was the Red Sox so you clearly knew this was a bad idea. It’s always a bad idea.
Andrew Heaney – 4.1 IP, 7 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. So this is stupid. I hope the Giants feel better about themselves as Heaney got trounced in the fifth with a pair of HRs tallying 5 ER. Yeesh. Don’t let this frame prevent you from streaming Heaney in the future but there’s probably a better bet to make for your roster.
James Shields – 5.1 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks. James. Jimmy. Jack. Slomin. Doesn’t matter what I call you, you will still make ChiSox fans regret this trade. Forever.
Homer Bailey vs. St. Louis Cardinals – He’s shown off his ability to produce Quality Starts, maybe he can repeat it against the Cards. Not many options here given it’s ace day, I like Bailey more than Brent Suter against the Fish.
Junior Guerra vs. Miami Marlins – I’d consider Zack Wheeler against the Braves as well, but Guerra is owned in plenty fewer leagues and I figured that should give him the nod. Sure don’t love him, but love facing the Marlins more.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
CC Sabathia vs. Minnesota Twins – I’d like to hold off on Triggs for one start, I don’t trust Boyd, and Davies is owned in over 20% of leagues. Let’s do this again CC.
Game of the Day
Sean Manaea vs. Chris Sale – It’s too bad Manaea has to face the Red Sox, but maybe he can pull it off where others have failed. Let’s also watch Sale embarrass some hitters.
Sonny Gray was just dropped in my league I have the #2 waiver claim in my league and #1 is out of moves so he’s mine if I want him. Do I want him? He was great for me last year. I still think he can right the ship. Thoughts?
I think he can too…eventually. Not worth the pick now with a tough schedule in the near future.
Got offered bundy and Lindor for my altuve ? Seems like a really good deal but Im weary of giving up my steady bat
Good stuff as always Nick, I’m also disappointed with Sonny Gray at tgis point. I’m considering dropping him in my 5×5 QS 10 team league. Best options available would be Maeda, Gausman, Faria, Velasquez, or eat the spot for who knows how long and add Flaherty from the Cards. Love to hear your take on what to do with his spot, given those options.
I think you swap for Maeda as he gets the Marlins next, then go from there.
Appreciate your time and the advice Nick!
My pleasure! Good to see you back another year :)
Thanks for noticing man, I use the site religiously to determine what arms to grab/trade for, really enjoy your work!
While exploring a deal of Quintana/Weaver for Cole (which you said you would do), a couple other possibilities came up. Quintana/Weaver for Stras. Both teams need more quality pitching and is their motivation of dealing one for two. Which do you take? The only reservation I have about Stras is he always misses significant time on the DL each year. With Cole, Steamer and other ROS projections show his ERA 3.70-3.85. Seems high to me.
Current SP are Kluber, Severino, Bauer, Godley, Corbin, Q and Weaver.
The other deal is Weaver/Ozuna for Judge. My current OF is Trout, Springer, Ozuna, Pollock, Buxton, Acuna. I know you comment on pitching, but since it involves a pitcher do you have an opinion on this one too?
I’d do the Weaver Ozuna deal for Judge. That’s a significant upgrade.
If that one falls through do you like Q and Weaver for Stras or Cole? Also, if you were to trade just one pitcher for a bat would it be Q or Weaver?
Really glad I found your site. I enjoy reading your starting pitcher roundups and look forward to them.
Thanks man! Hope to see you around through the year.
Judge deal won’t happen. Bump on the above questions for Plan B. Thanks in advance, Nick.
Sorry Nick. I just saw you replied.
Safe to bench Darvish tonight to protect ratios?
Don’t start Yu in Coors.
Would E-Rod, Pom or Pivetta be a decent substitute to pick in place of Weaver should I trade him?
Erod would be solid.
Looking to upgrade at SS. I drafted Marwin for his positional eligibility and have been plugging him in the SS slot and also have Cozart. Segura is available for a SP or two. I have Verlander, C. Martinez, Godley, J. Gray, Manea, Mikolas, Lucchesi, Montgomery and Estrada to work with. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
If he’ll somehow part with Segura for J Gray and Luchessi, I’d do that.
SUP NICK? U SEE MANAEAS NO NO? BRO LETS GO!!!!!
Manaea is bae.
Nick, I need your expert opinion. If you could only choose one SP for the rest of the season, who would it be? 8-team H2H points league.