Chilling at the #2 spot on The List currently is Nationals stud Max Scherzer, but it may be time for him to take a step down or two. He’s been in a rut lately and his line of 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 7 Ks didn’t do much to improve his status. Entering this game, Scherzer’s last 10 starts featured an 4.31 ERA (3.86 FIP) and a whopping 16.7% HR/FB rate. While the walks have still been miniscule (1.29 BB/9) and the Ks are flowing (10.20 K/9), from a guy who’s only superior is Clayton Kershaw, you best get a more consistent ERA. Including this start, Mad Max has now allowed 21 ER in his last 33 innings of work across six starts, and that’s just not good enough. It may be time for Chris Sale to rise to the occasion and take the #2 spot he’s always wanted, cause, you know, Kershaw is, well, Kershaw.
Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:
Chris Archer – 9.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hit, 1 BB, 11 Ks. Aces gonna ace.
Jake Arrieta – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 B, 7 Ks. Aces gonna ace.
Alfredo Simon – 9.0 IP, 1 Hits, 0 ER, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Aces gon—ahhhh who am I kidding, Simon would be closer to the 6 of clubs than an Ace. Fun fact, he managed to get a super low Minimalist Score despite throwing an extra inning that the MS requires. Not too shocking from the guy who still holds the season record with a ridiculous MS of four.
Josh Tomlin – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Last season, Tomlin held a 3.15 xFIP as a starter with a great 17.8% K-BB rate. I can’t say I’m all too shocked at this result and I’d be swooping him up if I needed the help in a 12-teamer. Didn’t expect him to start being productive again so quickly.
Charlie Morton – 6.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. Wait a second. After going 12 starts without striking out more than six batters, Morton has followed it up with starts of 7, 6, 9, and now 8 strikeouts. Am I really endorsing Morton right now? I guess I am…whoa.
Wade Miley – 7.1 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. He’s still super close to games featuring 5 and 7 ER. That K rate isn’t high enough for me to ignore the ~4.00 FIP/xFIP
Collin McHugh – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. It’s the fourth straight start from McHugh with 1 or fewer ER. ALL ABOARD!
Yohan Flande – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. Flande 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.
Brad Hand – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. I gotta Hand it to Brad, I didn’t expect this. It’s a solid start, but the Ks are limited and that makes me sadder than an unsold Popsicle.
Jose Quintana – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. So in conclusion, Quintana isn’t one to shock and awe, but he isn’t one to make you say Awwwwww either.
John Lamb – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. Now this is interesting. Lamb flexed some K upside in the minors, but not like this. Not like theeeeeeessssse. He was cruising through four then ran into some trouble in the 5th/6th, but showed solid promise. Consider me intrigued.
Tyler Duffey – 7.2 IP, 2 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. I was just talking to someone about Duffey and saying that he could provide some sneaky upside as his minor league numbers dictate a solid K performer with a decent walk rate, then BAM, he gives a 8/0 K per BB. Sure, that 10 Hits are a drag, but that looks to be more of BABIP hell – 56.5% GB rate – than poor pitching. Those in deep leagues should take note.
Jake Peavy – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BB, 5 Ks. So Peavy had a bad outing last time and now continued the trend. Because we all know you were really holding out for that Jake the snake recovery.
Ivan Nova – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Our Call Boy wasn’t very exciting, and was super boring and lame. I think Nova will be underrated in next year’s drafts, though.
Martin Perez – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Whoa, like-almost-totally-twinsies.
Danny Duffy – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Danny, the champion of none.
Miguel Gonzalez – 5.0 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Miguel…no.
Patrick Corbin – 2.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. Corbin is supposed to have a solid floor, and come to think of it, this horrible start could have been a lot worse. It just didn’t go his way, and he should bounce back next time out.
Nick Tropeano – 4.1 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BB, 3 Ks. First it was Martinez, now it’s Tropeano giving us Nicks a bad name. If you’re not doing for yourself, get better for us.
Jerome Williams – 1.2 IP, 8 ER, 8 Hits, 4 BBs, 1 K. JEROME! Stop Jeroming!
Mike Foltynewicz – 4.2 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. One day, fo real, Folty will be THE guy to pick up. Today is not that day.
Wei-Yin Chen vs. Minnesota Twins – A lot of good streaming options for Friday. Chen has a solid floor against a poor team, which makes him my favorite of the bunch, but you also have the upside of Drew Smyly against the A’s, which could be the better choice if you need to quickly make up ground. There’s also his opponent Chris Bassitt who could have a field day against the Rays, then Kyle Hendricks gets the lowly Braves, but his recent struggles have him at the bottom of the pile.
Joe Ross vs. Milwaukee Brewers – Some have given up on the Nationals’ rookie, but he should bounce back after two tough matchups against the Brew Crew.
Game of the Day
Chris Sale vs. Felix Hernandez – Psssh yeah give me that.