(Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire)
It should be a surprise that I’m leading with Mike Foltynewicz today after he blew past the Nationals via 9.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 11 Ks. Thing is, I don’t really care a whole lot for it and it’s weird. He’s essentially a two-pitch pitcher, getting through this one mostly with just heaters and sliders and even after watching it, I still feel concerned that his 28.2% K rate is supported by a 9.1% whiff rate. That just doesn’t work out in the end. His slider had some lovely moments in this one – check out the Bryce Harper slide piece in our daily Nastiest GIFs piece – and he got outs with his heater, but what I see here is a 0.65 HR/9 that is way out of whack (1.26 Hr/9 in career), a low whiff rate, a 10.6% walk rate, and 3.74 SIERA, and it adds up to a guy that I’d be happy to own in a 12-teamer, but doesn’t deserve a Top 40 spot. I’m thrilled he’s doing well three years after I loved him, but I just can’t ignore how Folty is clearly overperforming.
Let’s see how every other SP did Friday:
Jaime Barria – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Should I be giving more love to Barria? It’s a 2.48 ERA and 1.05 WHIP in seven starts now, and while a 12.4% whiff rate is making me lift an eyebrow, I just hate his arsenal. A 4.12 SIERA and 3.90 FIP sound about right as that .248 BABIP and 87.6% LOB rates are ridiculous, though his slider is doing crazy work with an 18% whiff rate, 46% O-Swing, and 46% Zone rate – well above the requirement for the 40/40/15 club. So sure, keep rolling with him for now, but I don’t think that slider is going to produce like this all year.
Tyler Mahle – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Mahle stepped into San Diego, put two poor starts behind him and used his heater well to dominate the Padres. He may be worth the look for his next two starts hosting the Rockies (bad on the road) and in Kansas City next. Streaming Record: 34-20.
Frankie Montas – 8.0 IP, 0 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. 2 Ks in eight frames doesn’t actually surprise me from Montas as his two-seamer is a bowling ball that will induce grounders, not strikeouts. His slider is decent but pumping fastballs is his game and it went as well as you could have ever hoped here against the Royals. I’m okay investing, but remember that his ceiling is capped and he’s a lower tier Spice Girl. Like an S Club 7 type.
Sergio Romo – 1.1 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks. Get out of here Romo, Austin Pruitt was the actual starter and he went 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. That’s pretty meh and you shouldn’t invest.
Jameson Taillon – 8.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. We’ve been talking about Taillon’s slider and he threw the pitch 27 times in this one, good for five whiffs, 5 BIP, and 3 called strikes. I’ll take that as he held a 34 CSW in 104 here against the Cardinals. Yes I want him badly in all leagues. This could be the breakout we talk about in the off-season, tracing it back to the addition of slider.
Chris Stratton – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. Whoa, Stratton woke up! With only 19 curveballs though, but 32 CSW in 95 is solid as his four-seamer did work. Not buying it after the troubles we’ve seen all year, so enjoy the One Night Bland.
Scott Alexander – 1.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. The Dodgers elected to feature an opener in Colorado, with Dennis Santana showing up in the second frame. He threw 70 pitches and went 3.2 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. in one of the weirdest MLB debuts for a starting pitcher. I’ll say this, maybe Dennis gets an actual start with Kershaw out, maybe not. I think he has talent in him but there’s no reason to invest ina 12-teamer until we get a more secure situation.
Clay Buchholz – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks. Buchholz, you serious right now? You have 5 Ks combined in your first two starts…oh I see. Blame it on the Marlins. Do this against the Giants next week then we can talk.
Sonny Gray – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. Really solid bounce back from Gray, but then again, the O’s are kinda known to present false hope to pitchers often. 46 breakings in 90 pitches (11 whiffs) did the trick, I’m still hesitant to get back on board though. He gets the Jays next and I think we can make a better assessment after that.
Miles Mikolas – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. 8Miles didn’t come swinging with the strikeouts, but just 1 ER and a 1.17 WHIP will work. It will work very well.
Tyler Chatwood – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. Chatwood has had three games out of eleven where he was fewer walks than strikeouts. Just three. How does he have only a 4.02 ERA?
Blaine Hardy – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. Blaine, your brother Tom makes more sense, even when he wears the mask. That’s how bad of a play it would be to own you right now. But he has a 2.77 ERA! With a 4.62 SIERA, .270 BABIP, 81.6% LOB rate, 5.6% HR/FB and a sub 20% strikeout rate. It’s a TEEs and you’re setting yourself up for a Grave Mistake.
Mike Leake – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. Leake will have one of these games with 8 strikeouts out of nowhere every year. Remember, his last three games totaled just 7 Ks.
Zach Wheeler – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. It’s not the strikeouts you want, but a 3.00 ERA is beautiful for Wheeler. I’ll take it in a sense that “you’re going in the right direction in the sense that a swerving car is getting closer to its destination.”
Chase Anderson – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks. Blegh. It’s not terrible it’s just making me realize how happy I am not to own Chase anymore. And that’s a bad thing.
Andrew Cashner – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. It’s a VVPQS against the Yankees and I guess there’s something to be happy about there.
Gerrit Cole – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. Cole’s last four starts have returned a 3.96 ERA. That’s not fair, though, as they’ve also returned a 31.6 K-BB% and 0.83 WHIP. Pop quiz: When a pitcher has an elevated ERA but a great K/BB and WHIP, what should you check next? Answer: Cole has allowed 6 HRs in those four games, which was the major problem from last season. Still, when he’s allowing a 5.29 H/9 and near 40% K rate, we can live with that.
Nick Pivetta – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Pivetta noooooo. His breaking stuff didn’t get the job done – 6 CSW in 34 pitches (17.5%, blegh) – and he never got locked in against the Giants. Good on him for limiting this to just 3 ER, though. Keep the faith.
Hector Santiago – 3.1 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 5 BBs, 1 Ks. Santiago has made residency off his island and we’re all upset about it. Why do you still make this joke? Because now it’s a thing and I love it and you can’t stop me. At the very least, I can hopefully stop you from ever consider Santiago.
Stephen Strasburg – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace. Yeah, even with 3 ER if you give me 10 Ks, that’s what’s up. I should note that he left this game with a cramp in the 7th frame to his non-throwing arm, but I’m not concerned at all. Enjoy the Gallows Pole with 17 whiffs (36 CSW in 106!).
Jose Berrios – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. You see 12 whiffs, a 34 CSW, and 7 Ks and you might think that Berrios had his curveball on. Eh, kinda. He was so close to a 2 ER QS until he hung a deuce to E5 that was launched for a two-run shot. Moving forward, you’re safe. Last night, you’re hurt. At least it was a 1.00 WHIP and 7 Ks with a Win though.
Jaime Garcia – 1.2 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. Jaime lost the battle of the Jaimes once again, not because he didn’t take his time prepping for strategies, but instead because he’s really really bad.
Walker Lockett – 3.2 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 5 BBs, 2 Ks. Here’s a rule of thumb for fantasy baseball: If a pitcher has “Locke” in their last name, don’t roster them. Walker is a Cup of Schmo and we move on.
Chris Sale – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Aces gonna give us three sixes as he invokes the Devil inside us. Come on Sale, do you want to be demoted to #5 on The List?
Tyler Anderson – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Anderson hasn’t been good for a bit and I’m not sure we can apply the Rocky Mountain Way to him anymore.
Elieser Hernandez – 3.0 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks. Sorry Elieser, I’m hoping the Marlins give Sandy Alcantara a shot soon and that means you have to be bad to make it happen. It’s for the good of the people…
Carlos Carrasco – 3.2 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks. Carrasco. Buddy. What are you doing. I’m trying to calm the people here and you elect to raise your ERA to a monstrous 4.50 ERA with this atrocity. It’s even worse when you look at him since April 28th – 6.37 ERA, 1.76 HR/9, and…1.18 WHIP? 17.3% K-BB? Those are okay. I think this makes for a great buy-low as Cookie is better than this, but I feel for y’all that need Carrasco to perform now. He’ll get it together, just be patient.
Bartolo Colon – 3.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. The Groan Ranger had it coming and he got trounced in three frames. Are you surprised? Why?
Ian Kennedy – 3.0 IP, 8 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. You own Kennedy for the strikeouts and he’s making you understand that you have a problem. You don’t want me in your life… YES I DO! No. You want the idea of me.
Matt Harvey vs. San Diego Padres – I sound like a mad man, but the Padres are bad and Harvey increased his fastball velocity. Maybe this works out.
Nick Kingham vs. St. Louis Cardinals – He was dropped in leagues are his last start and it’s time to take advantage.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
Nick Tropeano vs. Kansas City Royals – Just five games are being played including a NYY/DET double-header, which means it’s slim pickings. Luckily we’ve got Tropeano and he’s the only real choice.
Game of the Day
Justin Verlander vs. David Price – Another good matchup in Beantown and I wonder if Price can turn it on against the Astros.
H2H 6×6 OPS & QS Redraft. I’m currently in first place in my 12 team league. I have been offered Wood, Simmons and either Vizcaino or Giles for Miles Mikolas. Yes, 3 for 1. I have Semien and my starting staff includes Verlander, CarMart, Mikolas, Godley, Manaea, C. Smith, Heaney, Cahill, Montas, and Kingham.
Your thoughts are always greatly appreciated.
Do it! I dont think wood and mikolas are far apart. I like Myles but the lack of ks is a but concerning. Most sp have success when they come over initially…. Even dice k did. I think there is a good chance we have seen his peak. You get a closer big upgrade at 3ds and a pretty lateral sp trade.
Hey Nick. Great recap.
You’ve been down on Archer -rightfully so- and big on E-Rod, but have Archer ranked 8 spots higher than E-Rod. Why is that? Archer is available in my league and I own E-Rod. Should I swap?
Is it possible that some SPs just pitch better with men on base? Regarding Barria last night, I watched the game because I was forced to stream him following Black Thrusday — when I lost Reyes and Kersh. And the eye test told me that he really hit his spots with men on base – specifically when they were in scoring position. Instead of dismissing his strand rate as being lucky, could there be a skill to highlight when runners are on base? (I also see his BABIP is slightly repressed so perhaps he has been lucky!)
I am sure its possible but not too likely. Maybe he is better out of the stretch… I am against dismissing things as luck generally, but you have such a huge and easily measurable set of data that this is probably not the case. People dont repeat crazy strand rates year after year. Maybe he is good at inducing grounded annd double plays but beyond that it is probably not repeatable. Woildnt you think it would be a good idea to pitch tough to everyone?
Nick, would you trade Ohtani (pitcher) and Godley for Carlos Martinez?
My current staff is Verlander, Price, Berrios, Ohtani, Godley, Castillo, Weaver, Pivetta
Caleb Smith or Kingham. Points h2h, 7 game starts per week. Thoughts?
Sorry for the delay!
With Smith’s start yesterday and Kingham’s today in mind, I still want Smith.
Are you starting price today at houston in a 10 team roto format? Thanks
Tallion or Heaney ROS?
Heaney, but it’s close.
Hey Nick, where do you think Kershaw will fall to on the list? I’m trying to figure out whether to trade McCullers+JAHapp for him or if that is too much. Appreciate the help!
That’s too much since he’s out for a least a month.
Carrasco is one of three healthy SP on my team since mid-May, so… that’s gone well.
I hope that I live long enough to see the bullpen starter laughed at as it should be. Unfortunatly progressive ideas don’t get much scrutiny and I fear that it might stick around. Lots of people question the idea up front but analysis doesnt often follow. It seems to amount to a really scrubby 5th starter but it gets played as some kind of strategic move by progressive pundits.
Why do you consider it an idea that should be laughed at? What are the relative benefits / drawbacks of a starting pitcher going 5 – 7 innings starting in the 1st versus starting in the 2nd in your opinion?
I am in a 14 team 6×6 mixed league. I need SP and was offered Matt Boyd and Matt Duffy for Knebel and Chris Taylor. Is this a fair offer? Should I accept?