Freddy Peralta vs CHC (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 10 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 93 pitches.
I remember when we got word in the 2019/2020 off-season that Freddy Peralta had a new slider and I was on the fence. He had poor fastball command, why would his slider be any different? I kept that stance entering this season and so far…so wrong, emphasized by a glorious Win against the Cubs via 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 10 Ks. His slider was stupid with 47% CSW and nine whiffs while his fastball did its normal domination in the zone. Things were great and it seems that he’s finally crossing the bridge toward consistent success.
…and I can’t quite buy it. I watched this outing and I’ll give you one screenshot of why I’m scared to heavily invest. He throws incredibly crossbody. It’s not something new about Peralta, but just something I felt important to outline today after this buzzworthy outing. Throwing crossbody makes it tough to nail down the timing as you release the ball, meaning commanding fastballs is a terribly difficult task. It also means that you get more deception on your pitches, keep batters off-balance, and gain horizontal bend on breakers. It’s a high risk/high reward that relies immensely on getting into a rhythm. Just look at Jake Arrieta and Adam Ottavino’s careers — two pitchers who have seen highs and lows when they are in or out of rhythm and are the poster boys for stepping toward third base with their landing foot.
It doesn’t mean I’m out on Peralta — he was in rhythm here and this could continue for a while; just look at how long Arrieta’s peak was. It just means that you should anticipate plenty of bumps in the road this season. There will be plenty of bliss ahead, just be ready to weather the storm.
Sidenote: This graphic by Justin may be my favorite he’s ever done as I absolutely adore Blackbird by Alter Bridge. Simply amazing.
Let’s see how every other SP did Monday:
Chris Bassitt @ ARI (W) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 5 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 93 pitches.
It’s the same ole story for Bassitt. Boy meets sinker. Sinker gets CSW. Sinker has friends. Friends don’t help. Boy wins game, but at what cost? I’m a bit disappointed Bassitt wasn’t able to perform better against the lowly Diamondbacks, but at least you got your Win and low ERA. He’ll have time to fix that WHIP in the long haul.
Madison Bumgarner vs OAK (L) – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 98 pitches.
Come on Bumgarner, get it together! Yeah, it’s been a tough line of opponents, but you’ve got your curveball and cutter back! Now it’s down to your heater, which has fallen to sub-90 mph. You have the Nationals next, show me something there. What else have you got to lose? But seriously, don’t pick up Bumgarner save for the deepest of leagues. We need to see it first.
Casey Mize @ HOU (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 89 pitches.
Today was a good day for pitching with plenty of intriguing arms showing up and vying for a spot as the SP Roundup lead. Mize did the best he could, but I’m sorry kid. It’s just not for you. His splitter went 3/26 on whiffs. Four-seamer held an 18% CSW. And his slider…well actually his slider/cutter/whatever you want to call it was the golden pitch I talk about and went 38% CSW, but that’s not the point. He wasn’t in command like we dream of and he failed to get whiffs. This isn’t a breakout you, sir, Mize. Duh.
Tyler Glasnow vs TEX (W) – 7.2 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 14 Ks – 27 Whiffs, 43% CSW, 102 pitches.
Aces gonna ace. I know, I know, you want Glasnow inside the Top 10. I mean, he’s certainly pitching like a legit ace, earning a coveted Golden Goal here. I’m not in disagreement with you (truly, I recognize how stupid good that new slider is and it’s obliterating everyone + those nights when it doesn’t work he can just go back to the curveball, like tonight!) but there are three factors that are holding back Glasnow: 1) It’s a small sample of dominance and he’s had volatility in the past, 2) He doesn’t have a history of 180 frames in a season, and 3) There are a lot of other really good pitchers ahead of him. Why do we have to be mad? It’s only a game. As long as he keeps this up, surely there will be openings for him to keep rising, and hey, who knows, maybe he actually survives a full season. That would be fun.
Dane Dunning @ TB (ND) – 4.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 71 pitches.
Hmmmm. Dunning averaged 90.4 mph on his fastball and held a 5% CSW across 19 sliders. There are times when I want to give the image of me leaning back, arms folded, brows raised, and my eyes looking down with an intent expression of please don’t make say more. This is one of those times.
Wade Miley @ SF (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 73 pitches.
And look at that, the man did it. His cutter wasn’t overpowering, but got fouls and outs, while his changeup was bliss at 43% CSW. The man made his return last time out and is on a roll. Let’s ride with him for as long as this Vargas Rule goes.
Brady Singer vs LAA (L) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 83 pitches.
Lovely rebound start for Singer who finally got all the called strikes in the world with that sinker — 20/50 thrown went for called strikes. That’s a 40% CSW…without counting whiffs. His slider was solid — not great, but solid — and it added up to a strong performance. I still don’t like depending on 40% called strikes, though, and he doesn’t have a third offering. He gets the Jays next who haven’t been as hot as I expected, but I still wouldn’t rely on Singer.
Erick Fedde @ STL (ND) – 4.2 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 77 pitches.
This isn’t even five full frames, and I feel like you’re celebrating if you started Erick. Remember kids, Don’t trust the Fedde. Even if he’s throwing a tick harder than last year.
Trevor Cahill vs SD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 38% CSW, 82 pitches.
I’m sorry, what?! You know, I’m going to quote my last roundup on Cahill: “Cahill has made a name for himself randomly showing up on teams in the spring and somehow performing for a rare start here or there, but good luck finding the right one this time.” Yeah, good luck guessing a start right after he was horrendous and against the Padres. Can you hear that? That was the sound of my eyes rolling. Aggressively. No, there wasn’t something for me to go “oh snap, this works!” It doesn’t, even with the 38% CSW. He gets the Padres next and good luck, who knows what will happen.
Gerrit Cole @ TOR (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 98 pitches.
Aces gonna ace. He didn’t quite look like himself early on, and it took some time to get that slider working, but the Cole always finds the stockings. That makes no sense. YOU MAKE NO SENSE.
Huascar Ynoa vs MIA (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 40% CSW, 82 pitches.
Man, Ynoa really impressed me — again — and I should have given him more love today on The List. His fastball averaged 97 mph. YEP. Meanwhile, his slider missed bats aplenty, and this is everything we want Adbert Alzolay to be. Huh. I’m upset I didn’t tell y’all to grab him last time but, yeah. Grab him. Now.
Yu Darvish @ PIT (W) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 95 pitches.
Aces gonna ace. All the aces are doing ace things and it’s making us want to angrily tweet about who should be where inside the Top 20. Let’s just chill y’all, they’re all dope and make you feel dope. Ain’t that dope? Fun to see Darvish fail to get more than three whiffs on one pitch but leave the park with twelve to his name. Cool stuff.
Aaron Sanchez vs CIN (L) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 66 pitches.
The velocity is still down, but he’s starting to earn whiffs, here with his curveball at a 33% SwStr rate. That’s wonderful. We can’t trust him yet, but we’re getting closer and that’s a cool thing. I just need to see a better sinker, especially one that doesn’t live in the heart of the zone.
Robbie Ray vs NYY (L) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 84 pitches.
He hath returneth and bringth a 60% strike rate. I think that’s good for Ray — not amazing (you want around 65-70%), but that’s alright for Ray. Sadly he didn’t get the slider + curveball whiffs we’re accustomed to from the southpaw and even though he had solid velocity at 94/95, I’m still cautious but it’s the Royals next and that might be okay.
Dallas Keuchel vs CLE (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 68 pitches.
This was supposed to be Carlos Rodón, but he fell sick and will start later in the week. Props to Keuchel for still performing at a decent level despite the non-routine. I won’t judge him harshly for this one, but I will have hesitation against the Red Sox next time out in the battle of the pink laundry. That could get messy.
Adbert Alzolay @ MIL (L) – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 68 pitches.
Alzolay was cruising through five before loading the bases in the sixth and getting pulled. Welp, we know how that went. It’s a Careful, Icarus alright — first of the year! — and I feel like it’s unjust. The man impressed me in this one with some high-quality sliders — 47% and 10 whiffs! — while hovering the zone with heaters. There’s still a bit left to be desired with consistent command, but he is showing that level to be good enough so he doesn’t walk the farm into town. Is that a phrase? Sure, why not. The bad news is that Atlanta is next and I’d sit that out, but I hope he can overcome it and get us all cheering for
Sandy Alcantara @ ATL (ND) – 6.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 90 pitches.
Sandy was slightly off in this one, falling behind a few too many at-bats, allowing Atlanta a chance to push some “hard-earned runs” across the plate. There was a touch of Careful, Icarus here as well as he allowed his third run in the seventh. I know it’s a low CSW, but you really should feel good about Sandy still — that’s three starts of at least six frames and everything you could hope for. He’s the new Zack Wheeler, yo.
John Gant vs WSH (L) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 85 pitches.
I GANT DO IT CAP’N! We know, John. We know.
Triston McKenzie @ CWS (ND) – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 76 pitches.
Hey, Triston’s back! He got the White Sox and that was a recipe for hesitation, but I’m glad to see his heater still earning whiffs and being effective. Sadly his breaking stuff isn’t quite there yet — 0/17 whiffs across curveballs and sliders — and with the Reds and Yankees up next, I’d just wait for the end of the gauntlet before letting him fly. No, it won’t take an infinite amount of time before he gets there, he’ll be fine in two weeks. He needs the innings to ramp up, anyway.
Alex Cobb @ KC (W) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 19 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 97 pitches.
Jeeeez, ten strikeouts?! Who didn’t have ten strikeouts tonight?! Sandy didn’t. How dare you. Ahem, Cobb did a hilarious thing and went 54% splitters. Yes, The Thing was so good, he leaned into it hard and I have to say, I love it. A lot. If the Angels stick to a six-man, it means he gets the Rangers next Monday and that could work — that is two games in a row with the pitch. Something to consider.
Zack Greinke vs DET (L) – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 10 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 90 pitches.
Bleeeegggggh. He didn’t have his changeup working as it normally does, his fastball command was meh, and curveballs we too easily hit — including a 51 mph one that was taken for a the lovely stroll equivalent of a strike. Is it time for us to consider Greinke as done? What? After he just allowed two runs across 13 IP to start the year? But it’s the Tigers! I know, but still, come on. Keep throwing Greinke out there as he earned 38% CSW on fastballs. He likely won’t get Singled Out like this again.
Game of the Day
But Nick?! Where are the streaming picks? – I’ve moved them to the daily SP Matchups & Streamer Rankings article.
Photo by Dan Sanger/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)