When choosing who to lead with in these roundups, I often like to go with a guy that I don’t think is getting enough love. Brandon McCarthy surely fits under that umbrella and continued making me a fan after going 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks last night over the Mets. He’s now boasting a 2.87 ERA for the season with a 3.15 FIP and 4.06 xFIP, but his last six starts have been stellar – 1.57 ERA with an IPS just under six as he’s had more soft contact than hard and faced teams like the Nationals, Cubs, and Indians. Now, there are two problems here that prevents him from being an actual stud. First, his strikeouts just aren’t great – he’s averaging under five per start – and we have to talk about that xFIP. It’s a product of a fortunate .267 BABIP and a super low 6.3% HR/FB that will go up. No question about it. I wouldn’t classify McCarthy as a Top 40 arm given the low strikeout production and some obvious regression (he’s #53 on The List now), but hot damn if I’m not starting him against all but the top offenses in the short term. Let’s just hope he stays healthy and no more Dodgers shenanigans come his way.
Let’s see how every other SP did yesterday:
Mike Montgomery – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. That’s how it’s done Monty. Even with under 80 pitches to your name, you gave us a Quality Start of the highest degree against the Padres. Add one to the tally and let’s roll with him again as he faces the Marlins over the weekend. Streamer Record 39-25-10.
Chris Sale – 8.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace. Dude, your last three at-bats of the game are so frustrating. You had 2 Hits, 0 BBs, and 1 ER to your name with 8.1 IP thrown. Then a walk (YOU’RE UP 8-1!), two-run bomb from Jorge freakin’ Bonafacio then a single and you get the hook. Ugggggggh.
Mike Leake – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. For those unaware, Leake had allowed 17 ER across his previous four starts, including a 6 ER disaster against the Brewers last time out. This was against the Phillies, which was a decent play, and I think his next start against the Pirates works for me as well. Definitely not the Nats after, though.
Nick Martinez – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks. Oh lord, don’t do this to yourself.
Ariel Miranda – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Over his last eight starts, Miranda boasts a 3.17 ERA as he’s allowed more than 2 ER just once. That also comes with a horrific 5.07 FIP and 5.59 xFIP. This is a very common formulaic two-sentence approach I take BUT IT WORKS Y’ALL. Anyway, his 3.91 BB/9 is terrible in that time with just a 7.08 K/9. Why do we want this? Do you really think that he can keep producing for your team while being the biggest TEEs since No Man’s Sky? I’m willing to make a wager with anyone that his ERA will be 4.00 with a sub 7.50 K/9 and BB/9 above 3.00 ROS from this point forward. Let’s dance.
German Marquez – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Since May 10th, Marquez has just two starts above 1 ER in eight outings, a 2 ER start and a 6 ER start. Daaaaaang. That’s good for a 2.68 ERA…and a 4.46 xFIP. He also had five starts outside of Coors against bad teams, hosting the Cubs when they were slumping, the Cardinals, and the Diamondbacks last night in Coors. Not the most sterling recommendation. He’s also inducing just 13.5% soft contact with 37.3% hard contact to his name. With more starts in Coors coming and not as lax of a schedule I feel like you need to look elsewhere.
Gio Gonzalez – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. Solid stuff against the Marlins and now he hosts the Cubs, which I’m a bit scared of. Don’t forget, Gio has a 2.96 ERA but a 4.27 FIP and 4.37 xFIP. His 3.82 BB/9 isn’t doing him any favors either and that .268 BABIP with 84.5% LOB rate is sure to go in the wrong directions. Sell high, y’all.
Jhoulys Chacin – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks. Chacin will perform well when Jhoulyst expect it.
Alex Cobb – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. That’s four of his last five starts with 2 ER of fewer, though the one albatross is his 9 ER disaster that almost earned him the WHERST title. Still not buying this as his last four starts came paired with an xFIP over 4.00 each time. with hard contact rates averaging 45% across the outings. No thank you.
Matt Moore – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Good on Moore for getting a good start under his belt. Blame it on the Braves and all, of course.
Jordan Zimmermann – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 7 Ks. And the tale of the Slider continues as JZ had just over a strikeout per inning. I think he’s ownable in 12 teamers now. Whoa…
Julio Teheran – 7.1 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. Teheran got the Giants and did fine. Good WHIP, a QS with a meh ERA, but just two strikeouts…I wonder if he’s able to be mediocre and begrudgingly acceptable against the Brewers next.
Michael Pineda – 5.2 IP, 1 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. An error by Chris Carter turned into an extra pair of runs and a horrible start to the evening, but Pineda settled in nicely against the Angels and didn’t let the longball get to him…this time. It’s still a little too close to a Cherry Bomb for me to jump all over him but keep starting him obviously.
Zack Greinke – 7.1 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. This was inside of Coors. Just so we’re clear, don’t sell Greinke low and I want shares of him everywhere.
Chad Kuhl – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Kuhl story, bro.
Francis Martes – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Command is iffy with Martes and his time is coming to an end in the Astros rotation. I consider him a Young Gun as opposed to a proper Spice Girl.
Sonny Gray – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks. Bleeeegh. The Astros are good but you don’t need to walk four batters and get through just five frames on 108 pitches. It’s getting harder to believe Gray can be a stable entity in your staff, making me think he deserves a demotion to near #50.
Josh Tomlin – 4.2 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. Yep, that’s Tomlin alright.
Francisco Liriano – 4.2 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Huh, just 5 K+BB is low for Liriano, but the rest looks like his heads. Why heads? He’s a coin flip to be really good or really bad and tails never fails. But the feds choose heads. You bring up an interesting point.
Edinson Volquez – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 5 Hits, 5 BBs, 4 Ks. Man that week long Birthday Party was really something.
Matt Strahm – 3.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. I’ve been excited to see Strahm in the rotation finally and hoping he could get through his first three starts decently well so that he’d stick around after. Here was his second start against the Red Sox, which was a clear sit, and I was hoping he’d a little better to give him confidence. Oh well, let’s hope he survives to start number four.
Ervin Santana – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 10 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. That’s five of his nine starts where Santana has allowed at least 5 ER, including three of his last four. And this was against the ChiSox! At what point do we flat out drop him? Now?
Amir Garrett – 3.2 IP, 6 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. Great example of a Spice Girl fading from the public eye. Let’s keep it that way.
Chris Tillman – 4.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 0 Ks. You Can’t Spell Win With Tillman. I really should get that on a shirt…
Zach Davies – 5.0 IP, 7 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Please stop investing in Davies. Seriously.
Derek Holland – 2.2 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. The Dutch Invasion has continued as Holland’s life as a TEEs is no more…and not for the good reasons.
Robert Gsellman – 4.1 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks. This was far from a smart play against the Dodgers, but man it makes it tough to have a shred of confidence in Gsellman moving forward.
Joe Biagini vs. Texas Rangers – I know if you’re scared after his horrendous start over the weekend, but I feel like he should rebound given his generally high floor repertoire. A safer choice is probably Junior Guerra against the Pirates if you’re not into this.
Mike Clevinger vs. Baltimore Orioles – I’m not sure why there’s confusion about this start, it seems pretty clear it’s Clevinger and not Danny Salazar, right? Anyway, roll with Clev as he would be owned in all 12-teamers if there were more clarity about his security in the rotation. I’d also consider Sean Newcomb against the Giants, but there is a lower floor there.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
Mike Pelfrey vs Oakland Athletics – I feel like I’m taking crazy pills recommending Pelfrey, but he gets Oakland and there are few options to choose from + he’s allowed a total over 7 ER in his six starts. Obviously not one I want to roll with and I’d go Seth Lugo instead, but he’s over my 25% threshold now. Womp womp.
Game of the Day
Tyson Ross vs Joe Biagini – Plenty of fun starts hear (Verlander vs. Paxton, Walker vs. Hoffman, Samardzija vs. Newcomb), but I’m super curious how each of these pitchers look today. Will Ross take the step forward? Will Biagini recover? FIND OUT AT 8:05pm EST.