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Eovalding Into A New Man

Our Call Boy was sparkling against the Rays as Nathan Eovaldi went 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks, raising his K/9 to 8.49 and lowering his FIP...

Our Call Boy was sparkling against the Rays as Nathan Eovaldi went 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks, raising his K/9 to 8.49 and lowering his FIP to 3.53  It’s getting to the point that I really need to consider if he’s legit, and upon close inspection there are some odd things going on under the hood.  For example, Eovaldi is getting 10% more grounders on his Four-Seamer without any discernable change to its movement, velocity, zone rate, etc.  It’s possible it’s due to him placing balls better in the strikezone, though I’m leaning toward noise rather that a huge shift in batted ball profile.  Then there is his Slider, which is a weird beast in itself – he’s throwing it in the zone over 20 points more than 2015, and he’s getting batters to chase over 50% out of the zone, though they are making contact on those poor pitches nearly 90% of the time.  You’d think that would dictate a low BAA or LD rate, but it’s actually right in line with previous years – .318 BAA, 26.8% LD rate.  It’s peculiar and maybe his improved control really is all that he needed – BB rate down from 7.3% to 5.9% – but it makes me think this is smoke-and-mirrors more than a legit stud in the making.

Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:

Archie Bradley – 7.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks. Archie was back after two comical starts early in the season and started flexing the upside that made him a darling prospect back in the day.  You’re probably wondering if you should be trusting Bradley moving forward given those luscious strikeouts and I’d be super cautious.  He’ll be added to the The List tomorrow simply because there is enough upside to take the risky chance on him at the backend of the Top 100, but he has a history of walk problems that seemed to still be lingering in his previous MLB time and minor league games this year.  His K upside likes to come and go and I’m far from sold that he’s suddenly figured it out.  You’ve been warned.

Clayton Kershaw – 7.2 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks.  Aces gonna ace. Duh.

Jake Odorizzi – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. That’s another solid outing from Odorizzi that was ruined only by a walk followed by a dinger that led to the loss.  Freakin’ baseball.

John Lackey – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 6 Ks. Four walks are not convincing, but everything else checks out so Lackey will stick in the Top 40.  Crazy how he’s pulling it off this year.

Ricky Nolasco – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks.  This is a One Night Bland.  Don’t look more into it.

Jimmy Nelson – 7.1 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. That 4.52 FIP, 4.26 xFIP and 3.50 BB/9 turn me off more than watching reruns of The Joy Of Painting.

Rich Hill – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 9 Ks.  The big news is that Hill is still dominating.  The bigger news is that he left in the seventh after a “really mild groin strain”, which sounds like the day after sexual enlightenment for pubescent boys.  I suspect he might miss his next start since this is the A’s ace after all, and they need him healthy to trade at the deadline.  His injury proneness is the reason he’s not Top 20 on The List and let’s hope it doesn’t become a bigger issues moving forward.

Chris Sale – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks.  Aces gonna ace.

Tom Koehler – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 5 BBs, 2 Ks. Nah, not gonna convince me Koehler.  Bu-but-but.  Not another word.

Stephen Strasburg – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks.  A little underperforming from Stras, but yet another dub and yet another low ERA start so just smile and nod.

Michael Wacha – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. I like the idea of Gio vs. Wacha as king of the Tobys.  Maybe with a sprinkle of Chen and Volquez.

Johnny Cueto – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks.  Pretty boring but good boring and we don’t have enough of that in the Top 15, honestly.

Doug Fister – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 6 Ks. A 1.50 WHIP and 6 Ks?  This is Fister we’re talking about right?  You mean my exploits in college?  No, the guy Fister.  Oh. I promise not to mention that again.  Yeah, please don’t.

David Price – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Ugh, I have to move Price down a bit.  It’s just getting too frustrating to watch this guy fail to be consistently good with flashes of elite upside.  This is just so lame, even if it was against his former Toronto team.

Mike Pelfrey – 5.2 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks.  Please don’t this make anyone think it’s a good idea to start Pelfrey.  This just in: Starting Pelfrey is a bad idea.

Martin Perez – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks.  Perez is about as fun as the twentieth time you scanned through that August 2014 issue of  New Yorker magazine in the bathroom.

Bartolo Colon – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks.  It’s a boring start from the Big Apple and there’s pretty much nothing to pull from this.

Edinson Volquez – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks.  Blegh.  Just blegh?  Yeah, blegh.

Chris Tillman – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks.  This was a very unpleasant outing from Tillman, but I can’t say what I want to since he left with the dub.  Whatever, he’s lucky he gets to skip the Boston series and face the Yankees next followed by the Royals, and I’ll be watching closely to see if he picks it up next time out.

R.A. Dickey – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 1 Ks. Dickey told me that he was the king of his high school prom.  I saw his yearbook and he actually was crowned.  Crowned the queen.  Don’t trust a knuckleballer.

Julio Teheran – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Welp, it was a fun ride guys.  Just kidding, he gets the Dodgers + Padres + Reds next and I think this is more of a blip than a nose dive.

Brandon Finnegan – 6.1 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks.  Note to self: Never – even in the worst of circumstances – recommend Finnegan in any shape or form until he looks like a stud for at least three starts…probably four.

Francisco Liriano – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 4 BBs, 6 Ks.  Liriano is pretty droppable whether you like it or not. Those walks are sticking around like that annoying cousin on your couch – Hey, that’s me! – and it’s going to keep ruining his life – Awwww…

Mike Clevinger – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. So I was a bit too high on Clevinger as I believed he could take a few steps forward in his two starts this week, but it just wasn’t meant to be. Oh well, to the next pitching prospect!

Drew Pomeranz – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 9 Ks. Here’s what I said after his last start: “I really want to like Pomeranz more but those walks are just so frightening. He now holds an ugly 4.25 BB/9 and I have to believe it’s going to start causing some major issues in the near future.”  I didn’t realize that ‘near future’ meant next time out!  I think you sit him next time out against the Rockies, but then you might get lucky with someone dropping him before he faces the Braves and Marlins.

Nick Tropeano – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 5 BBs, 5 Ks.  This is why Tropeano isn’t someone you want to roster.

Taijuan Walker – 4.1 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Bleegggghhhh, looks like I have to be dropping Walker out of the Top 30 tomorrow.

Chris Rusin – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 11 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Rusin 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 not named Gray and maybe even Gray.

Vincent Velasquez – 4.2 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. He’s been a sell high for a bit and this isn’t doing you any favors.  He may be a darling next time out against the Brewers and you best be ready to deal him ASAP after that outing.

Today’s Streamers

Nate Karns vs. San Diego Padres – He’s owned in under 30% of ESPN leagues and I see Karns feasting away against the Padres.  Ervin Santana against the A’s is a good discount option as well.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Tyler Duffey vs. Oakland Athletics – I know it’s been a bit rough lately, but this should be very helpful.

Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer 

Danny Duffy vs. Tampa Bay Rays – Oh boy for the record I wouldn’t recommend any stream today.  The options just aren’t good enough.  If I had to pick one it’s this one featuring a guy I don’t like much at all and believe is overrated in Duffy.  There’s also Sean Manaea against the Twins, but he’s so inconsistent without enough upside to warrant a stream.

Game of the Day

Jose Quintana vs. Matt Harvey – We all want to see Harvey get back on the right track while Quintana has been grinding on that track for a long time.

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

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