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No Way José

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Thursday.

Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Thursday game. I apologize for the jokes written in my delirium in advance. Have questions? Ask me during my office hours on Twitch weekday mornings from 9 am-11 am ET.  

José Quintana vs MIL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 40% CSW, 78 pitches.

If you didn’t know it, you can follow every SP Roundup blurb I’ve written about a pitcher inside the game logs of of our player pages. Why am I telling you this now? Because you’ll see my hope for José Quintana to execute a proper BSB and thrive because of it. Well, he did just that today, not only “thriving” but earning a Golden Goal via 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 40% CSW, 78 pitches. Just look at the strikezone plot. HE DID THE THING. Not so bad for someone who allowed a longball on his very first pitch of the game.

He’s been trying to do this all year (and at bursts last season) and while I’m obviously thrilled he executed it today, it’s pretty easy to call this one a Birthday PartyThe Brewers are among the coldest lineups in the majors and given the track record of failed execution, Quintana’s stellar performance can be coughed up to “one of those days.”

Don’t believe me? Then go ahead, start him against the Tigers next week. I wouldn’t do it, but if you truly buy into this, you’ll have all the opportunity you want to pick him up and let him fly. For the rest of you, I suggest at least monitoring that start from afar (or just read the roundup about it) and see if he can repeat it.

 

Let’s see how every other SP did Thursday:

 

Alek Manoah vs BOS (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 92 pitches.

I said I’d wait until after the Yankee start, but hot DANG does it feel like he deserves the Aces Gonna Ace label today. One more…hopefully one where you do better than 56% strikes on your sliders. But the fastball was amazing! I KNOW I KNOW.

Freddy Peralta @ PIT (ND) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 92 pitches.

Ahhh. That’s what happens when Peralta is able to find the zone with curveballs and sliders again. Sure, it was Pittsburgh, but let’s all let loose a dramatic sigh of relief. SIGH.

Bruce Zimmermann @ NYY (L) – 4.1 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 76 pitches.

So it wasn’t terrible, but we were looking for some reinforcement to the idea that Zimmermann deserves to be rostered and this was…meh. His slider showed up in a big way (53% CSW! 74% strikes!) but the changeup went 2/27 whiffs and his four-seamer was an atrocity — 10/26 strikes is just 38% STRIKES — and it’s hard for me to lean without care. We wanted Bruce to be The Boss or to even be waxing, but instead we got Bruce waning.

Garrett Whitlock @ TOR (L) – 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 61 pitches.

He got himself into jams and had a ridiculous squeeze of the zone, but was overall decent, all things considered. Don’t think he’s going into the rotation now that the Toronto trip is over, though, so until he actually has a rotation spot locked down, I wouldn’t roster Whitlock.

Zack Wheeler vs COL (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 4 BBs, 7 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 90 pitches.

So the velocity fell down to 95.2 mph (was at 96 last time out. Blegh) and the slider went just 2/26 whiffs. But the start was amazing! What? Oh, right. It’s Rockie Road and he commanded his sinker and four-seamer super well. I just wanted to feel a little better about the stuff before his start against the Rangers. We’re starting him, but he’s not back to 2021 yet.

Dakota Hudson vs ARI (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 84 pitches.

And once again, Hudson cruises through six frames against a poor offense, supported by a great defense behind him. He’s a wonderful streaming option and don’t make it more than that. So do I start him against the Royals next? They don’t strike out often! Well, Dakota wasn’t going to be Fanning folks in Kansas City anyway, so that could work. He’s an option, not a must-start.

Kyle Wright vs CHC (W) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 8 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 97 pitches.

Kyle’s command was plenty worse in this one, with fastballs and curveballs missing the edges and finding the heart of the plate constantly. But he made it work and somehow squeezed out seven frames. I think it represents how overwhelming his stuff can be, though it may just be the Cubs offense coming back down to Earth. Next are the Mets and I’m hoping his command rebounds as he likely won’t get away with bad command in New York.

Reid Detmers vs CLE (W) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 88 pitches.

I was hoping to see a legit step forward from Detmers in this one — especially from the slider — and what we got was…0/10 CSW on the sweeper. We’re not there yet, though I am glad to see him sit 93/94 mph instead of 92/93. Great, you still need a proper whiff pitch (SLIDER) and I can’t be excited about you until that pitch does its job.

Jeffrey Springs vs SEA (ND) – 2.2 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 43 pitches.

It’s 2022, which means we see a bullpen game every other day. What a world.

Bailey Ober vs DET (ND) – 3.2 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 73 pitches.

Bailey left this game early with a groin injury. Bummer. No, the other side. …I’m not saying that.

Trevor Rogers @ WSH (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 91 pitches.

This is the first time Rogers has gone a full six frames since June 15th of last year. Yeah. Putting it bluntly, his changeup and slider earned strikes, and the four-seamer overwhelmed. There’s another level for Rogers to hit with his secondaries and I have to believe we’ll see it in due time.

Cal Quantrill @ LAA (L) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 98 pitches.

Somehow, Cal finds a way. His cutter did its job with effective strikes through the game, while the sinker found gloves as it earned just 13% CSW across 48 thrown. Yes, it’s wild, but that’s just how Quantrill does. He’s as much of a Toby as you’ll find.

Justin Verlander @ TEX (W) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 91 pitches.

Like Manoah, I promised I’d wait one more start after this one before coronating him with the Aces Gonna Ace label. But you know. Cool to see the curveball earn 50% CSW and 80% strikes here.

Martín Pérez vs HOU (ND) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 76 pitches.

Whoaaa look at this. Pérez had himself a Birthday Party for the second straight week as the BABIP gods favored him on this lovely day. How can it be a birthday party if he’s done it twice in a row? Because that’s how much I believe in this. Feel free to Vargas Rule if you must — maybe his command is truly locked in for a while — but I ain’t touching this.

Brad Keller @ CWS (ND) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 87 pitches.

Keller didn’t have the slider command we normally see during success, but he did avoid the heart of the zone with fastballs, forcing the ChiSox to hit tough pitches in play. That’s the heart of a Vargas Rule and Keller is taking on the part quite well. It ain’t gonna last, but sure, start him against the Cardinals and flip the coin if you like.

Chris Flexen @ TB (L) – 6.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 96 pitches.

Once again, Flexen goes six frames and produces as a Toby does. Props to him, for real. If that’s what you want, go on and enjoy it.

Austin Gomber @ PHI (L) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 88 pitches.

He was pushed up to today and took full advantage of being away from Coors. He didn’t have his best stuff, but leaned heavily on his slider/curve/change regardless and made it work. I kinda dig Gomber for streams on the road in the future, just don’t get too cocky about it.

Patrick Corbin vs MIA (L) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 90 pitches.

Of course you did. After earning just five whiffs on his slider across his first three starts combined, Corbin earned seven on the sweeper in this one. Does it mean he’s back? Nah. It means he had a good day against a meh offense. He’s hurt us so much that we need to be patient here. Coors is next so this surely isn’t going to stick…right?

Michael Kopech vs KC (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 94 pitches.

It was another edition of “Fastball fastball fastball”, a three-act play by M. Kopech as he couldn’t find the strikes with his slider or curveball. It’s a bit concerning, especially when the heater came it at just 94.4 mph — he is supposed to be a hard-throwing mid-to-upper 90s arm with legit secondaries. I’m worried, but all you can do is keep starting him.

Nick Martinez @ CIN (W) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 86 pitches.

Yeah, this is fine. It wasn’t the sharpest we’ve seen from Martinez and the velocity is at just 92 mph, but the changeup was stellar, the cutter earned strikes and the curveball…had a 40% CSW but just 7/15 strikes. I’m a little worried the heater isn’t doing its part at the moment but if he’s in the six-man rotation when Mike Clevinger and Blake Snell return, it means he gets Miami next. That works for me.

Jameson Taillon vs BAL (ND) – 4.2 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 83 pitches.

Blegh. There just wasn’t enough in the secondaries once again. He’s a Toby with a touch less volume and we have to accept that.

Drew Smyly @ ATL (L) – 4.2 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 66 pitches.

Oh hey, it’s Drew Smyly. His curveball was pretty good and his cutter did some things. Cool. I guess, sure, why not.

Tyler Mahle vs SD (L) – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 89 pitches.

I just want the whole “he’s terrible at home!” thing to end and sadly, it hasn’t yet. His stuff is still great, though, and you just gotta put your head down and keep starting him because I’d be shocked if you had something better on your wire with Mahle as the worst arm in your rotation.

Tarik Skubal @ MIN (L) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 85 pitches.

Blegh. The slider wasn’t nearly as good as it was in the last two starts, the changeup went on vacation, and the curve returned just 4/11 strikes. This ain’t it. It’s gonna be one of those seasons, isn’t it. Nah, I have to keep the faith that Skubal will do some tweaking and get into a rhythm, but yeah, this is a bit disheartening.

Humberto Castellanos @ STL (L) – 2.0 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 44 pitches.

And Castellanos allows a deep drive to left, and that will make it a 4-0 ball game…Okay fine, he didn’t allow a longball, but he sure pitched like he wanted to give one up.

 

Game of the Day 

Aaron Nola vs. Tylord Megill – These are the two pitchers I wake up for. So yes, I’ll be super awake, watching this one.

But Nick?! Where are the streaming picks? – I’ve moved them to the daily SP Matchups & Streamer Rankings article.

Have Questions? – Join my morning Twitch livestream! I answer all questions there for free: 9:00 am – 11:00 am ET Monday through Friday.

Featured Image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

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.

  • Nittanychris says:

    In a 5×5, 10 team Roto League with QS in place of Ws, for ROS only J Lúzardo or T Mahle? Thanks, love your stuff!

  • Big Joey says:

    Realistically, how much upside does Mahle have in leagues that count Wins and Losses? Even if he improves, he probably won’t even have a winning record, right?

  • Vaelen Lane says:

    Really been enjoying the content lately! As a Charlie Morton owner I appreciate the copium as I hold in fear.

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