(Photo by William Purnell/Icon Sportswire)
If you told me at the beginning of the year that I’d have Cole Hamels in the Top 40 this season, I’d have said “okay.” On the real, after his 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks brilliance against the Reds, Hamels has been all kinds of dominant as a Cub, recording a stupid low 0.79 ERA that’s lower than his 0.94 WHIP, with a 24% K rate and 6.5% BB rate in five starts. HOTEL returns a .282 BABIP, 88.5% LOB rate, and…0% HR/FB rate. There it is, the biggest difference from Hamels as a Ranger and as a Cub, as the southpaw was sporting a 20.7% HR/FB through the end of July. Yes, moving from Arlington to Wrigley will lower your HR total, but not this much. Nevertheless, the 4.11 SIERA in that time is still plenty higher than the 3.38 mark he has here, and it’s on the back of a wildly improved cutter/fastball combination, while not making mistakes with his whiff-heavy changeup. I can see a 3.50 ERA with a 25% K rate and 1.15 WHIP the rest of the way on winning ballclub and that’s a wonderful thing. Can’t tell you where he’ll be on Monday since it’s moving to a ROS schedule format, but I imagine I’ll be a fan of his schtick. Now for next year…
Let’s see how every other SP did Thursday:
Matt Boyd – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Great to see Boyd continue rolling with his increased velocity, especially as our Call Boy against the ChiSox. Not expecting a whole lot save for a good streaming option. Streaming Record: 79-40. With 37 days left of games to go, I’m officially over .500 for the year. It’s a bit weird, I’m hoping I can hit the triple-digit mark, but I get the feeling this was a fortunate year, not that there is a super deep underlying skill that should be used by everyone. I’m not sure. I think someone actually made a spreadsheet of stats based on my streamer picks, I’m super curious how that actually looks given the losses are sure to be detrimental to a decent degree. Anyway here’s to hoping my good luck lasts a little longer.
Sean Newcomb – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 8 Ks. Is this the resurgence of Newcomb? Ehhhh I don’t think so. His fastball was super good here, but there are still too many questions with his secondary stuff that makes he hesitant to believe he can do this against a team that doesn’t rhyme with Schmarlins. Just 9/38 CSW on sliders/curveballs/changeups, should be enough to understand this.
Aaron Nola – 8.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks. Aces gonna ace. Man he looks good. I love Nola day.
David Price – 8.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. This was against the Indians. The Indians! It might be time to give Price the AGA label given his fantastic stretch lately, acting like the Top 20 guy I was expecting out of spring training. I considered leading with Price here, but you guys already know everything – he moved toward the first-base side of the rubber and has been as dope as it gets. Here’s to a strong final month to make us wonder his 2019 ADP.
Madison Bumgarner – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. This is the start I’ve been waiting for from Bumgarner, though I’d be remiss not to give it a Blame it on the Mets. Just 25/109 CSW here with 26 fouls and 20 balls in play. That’s not a whole lot of “dominance” despite what the line looks. A decent amount of soft contact, but really, just 4/27 CSW on your cutter? That’s not proper Bumgarner. Nick, come on. The dude clearly killed it. I’m not upset here at all, just wondering if this line really is the sign of an excellent five weeks ahead. I’m leaning…no.
Jacob deGrom – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace. DeGrom got incredibly squeezed here, leading to his sole ER and knocking him out a little early + pumping his WHIP slightly. He deserved better. He always deserves better.
Danny Duffy – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. This is the only start all year that Duffy has allowed exactly 2 ER. He’s been as Cherry Bomb as it gets and after allowing 7, 0, 6, 6 ER in his last four, it’s nice to see this. You know what you’re getting into it’s up to you if you want to risk it.
Kyle Freeland – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. Guess what. Freeland used over 30% cutters again and it returned yet another double-digit whiff rate. I feel like it’s 2015 Keuchel all over again as I was hesitant given the low strikeouts but now that they’ve shown up and are believable, I’m so in. Sooooo in.
Joey Lucchesi – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Lucchesi’s hand injury made us give this an easy bench considering Coors and BAM! He hits us with this gem. Churve was a bit better than we’ve seen lately, though it was mostly heaters doing the good work here. A little fortunate BABIP wise, but overall enough encouragement to still endorse him for 12-teamers.
Max Scherzer – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace. Sorry Scherzer, next time don’t hang a slider in the 7th for a 2-run shot and maybe you’ll get a Win.
Tyler Glasnow – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 8 Ks. We gave Glasnow the Sawx excuse for his 3 walks last time, but now against the aggressive Royals, I don’t have the excuse for you. Great to see the strikeouts are still in style, though, and I think he’s going to still carry this risk, but it’s worth it given the high K production.
Elieser Hernandez – 3.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. This is a Cup of Schmo like the mug I’m drinking out of right now. It makes all coffee taste better, I swear. That’s because it’s made out of candy. Shhhh that’s supposed to be a surprise!
Kohl Stewart – 4.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. There’s a reason why they call it a Kohl yard. Yes, he’s also a Cup of Schmo. Siiiiiiip.
Anthony DeSclafani – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Tony Disco had his slider cooking like some legit tomato sauce for the past few starts and while it had its moments – 10/34 whiffs! – it got hit pretty hard when in play. Still, 27/34 for strikes is still solid, he just needed a third option to match with his heater as well and…he doesn’t have that anymore.
Trevor Cahill – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. Easily the most disappointing start of the night came from Cahill, who couldn’t handle the Twins. Just four whiffs on 88 pitches is staggering, leading to 18/88 CSW. Yeah, that’s terrible. He just didn’t have his curveball – only 9 thrown! – while his cutter didn’t do much either. I think this was just one of those days and I’d keep the faith.
Adam Plutko – 4.1 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 5 BBs, 4 Ks. This started out well through four frames, then fell apart when Plutko remembered he is just Josh Tomlin 2.0. And let’s say he somehow pulled this one off, I still wouldn’t believe it. He’s simply not that good.
James Shields – 6.2 IP, 7 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Say Copper, ain’t it about time that ole Jimmy Bucklers got what he deserved? Yes it is. Yes it is.
Touki Toussaint vs. Miami Marlins – It looks like he’s getting another start in the rotation against the Marlins, and count me in. This might not be sub 20% the day of, but it’s under 10% now in ESPN so jump on it. Reynaldo Lopez vs. Detroit Tigers. There’s zero confirmation on Touki so I’m axing that and sticking ReyLo here instead as there is nothing else. Seriously.
Lucas Giolito vs. Detroit Tigers – I know it sounds crazy, though there aren’t any other good options and Giolito hasn’t been so bad lately with better breaking ball command, and improved changeup, and increased velocity. I’m looking for a QS here and we might get it.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
Derek Holland vs. Texas Rangers – He’s right at the 20% mark, allowing me to take this one. The only other play I see is Sam Gaviglio against the Phils, but they are a little more dangerous than I’d like. Maybe Chase Anderson against the Pirates as well if he’s around.
Game of the Day
Michael Fulmer vs. Reynaldo Lopez – GUYS HE’S BACK. I know y’all don’t care like I do, but I really want him to do well down the stretch. Fulmer will be limited pitch count wise, so it’s a DLH for the most part, save for leagues that can risk the ratios. Awwww man, I’m excited just to see him out there again.