Pitcher List Staff League Review: Week 2
Welcome folks to the Pitcher List staff leagues! This year Pitcher List added a huge amount of new staff members which allowed us to expand from three to a whopping six leagues! As a reminder, these leagues are standard 5×5 and are set up relegation style, which means if you finish in the top three, you move up; bottom three, you move down.
Best Performance: Troy & Amed in the AM (Austin Bristow II)
The scoreboard might have given this to Kyle Bishop in his 8-0 rout of Alex Fast, but Austin’s performance was all-around better, paced by 11 home runs coming from seven different hitters and a .288 average to go along with his 0.98 team WHIP across 56.1 IP. Max Posner’s only category victory was runs, in which he edged Austin by one.
Closest Matchup: How Manny More Times (Nick Pollack) vs Chapman & The Hosk (Myles Nelson)
This was without a doubt one of the closest matchups I’ve seen. Nick took HRs, RBI, and Wins all by one (12-11, 30-29, and 3-2, respectively), while Myles edged out Nick in AVG (.003), ERA (0.21), and WHIP (0.10) by narrow margins and the two tied in steals and saves. Nick forced the tie on Sunday thanks to a solo shot from Fernando Tatis Jr., giving him the edge in HRs and RBI, and two wins from David Price and Felipe Vazquez – the rare relief win. Nick must have thought his chances at avoiding a loss were gone when Vazquez blew the save, but the Pirates bailed him out and Nick lives to fight another day.
Best Performance: Brennan’s Bold Team (8-1-1)
Brennan’s Bold Team laid waste to the Statcast Darlings (Michael Haas) 8-1-1 on the strength of some pretty great hitting. His team mashed 17 home runs, drove in 38 and had six stolen bases and a .301 average. Strong weeks from Khris Davis and Austin Meadows were the primary culprits.
His pitching may not have been excellent (5.28 ERA and 1.37 WHIP – thanks Corey Kluber) but he did earned a whopping 11 saves, good enough to help him coast to an easy victory in Week 2.
Closest Matchup: Troy Klauder and Adam’s Okay team were one of two ties we had this week, going 4-4-2 with extremely similar results. Each team hit 11 home runs and swiped six bases, with Adam’s team gaining a small advantage in RBI (36-35) and batting average, while somehow crushing the runs category, 46-26.
The close battle kept both owners in the top-five of the league heading into Week 3.
Weirdest Stat: The best laid plans can often go awry, especially this season with ace pitchers. That’s what happened to Astudillo Ghibli (Ben Pernick’s) team, who had a pitching staff littered with high-profile names like Chris Sale, Noah Syndergaard, Yu Darvish, Yonny Chirinos, Edwin Diaz and Kyle Freeland, which led to him a disgusting 7.78 ERA and 1.58 WHIP on the weeks. Yikes. Better days are ahead Ben.
– Andy Patton
Best Performance: Scott Chu (Big League Chu) had the most balanced team performance. Riding the Jose Altuve six-HR wave, Chu had the second most power (12 HR) with the best pitching (3.22 ERA/1.03 WHIP/58Ks/9 saves) to beat Rob Z (Inglourious Baezterd) 6-3.
Closest Matchup: This one was no contest. Paul Ghiglieri (Paul’s Busty Posers) squeaked out Dan McNamera (AMC’s Breaking Bats) in a 5-4 victory that could have easily gone the other way. The teams each had 30 runs scored, Breaking Bats lost saves 2-1 and Breaking Bats won BA .260 to .262.
Weirdest team stat: Despite smashing a league-best 13 HR in week 2, Colin Charles’ (Knuckle Curve) hitters only produced 29 RBI, which was right at the league average mark for the week. Also, Travis Sherer’s (Coffee’s for Closers) pitchers still do not have a win, combining Weeks 1 and 2 for 105 IP.
Biggest Performance Enhancing Wire Add: Jason Heyward – yes that Jason Heyward – was picked up on April 10 by Jake Bridges (Valley of the Dahls) and started three times last week. In those three starts, Heyward had a homer and a stolen base, scored three runs, and drove in two RBIs. Turns out Valley of the Dahls really needed him in its 6-3 win, as it tied with 28 RBIs and won runs by three. Heyward’s HR also contributed to a 12-10 win in the category.
– Travis Sherer
This was a week of blowouts with just one tie and four teams achieving 8+ wins. Ironically, the two worst performing teams of the week – Stephen Dudas’ Team (Stephen Dudas) at .236 xW% and Hedenson’s Team (Hunter Denson) at .386 xW% – were not two of the teams to be blown out. The Muffin Stumps (Ryan Amore) got off to an unexpectedly good start compared to their preseason projections, taking an 8 – 1 – 1 victory despite being projected as the 11th place team and Alex’s Team (Alex Isherwood) stumbled a bit out of the gate at 3 – 6 – 1 despite being projected as the best team in the league. Such is the life of a one week sample size.
Cleary, Led Z. Eflin (Max Freeze) and Mostly Nats (Charlie Wright) had very good performances leading to their 9 – 1 records. Their xW% of .623 and .632, respectively, also reflect that. However, the Maryland Wolfdogs put together a dominant .719 zW% for the week thanks to an insanely good 12 SB, five ahead of their opponent and nearest competitor Roop Dog (Ben Ruppert) at seven. Additionally, while K was the only pitching category the hurler-focused Wolfdogs led the league in for the week, their average pitching category rank of 2.7 was tops. On the hitting side, the Nats’ offense was even more dominant with an average rank of 2.4 along with a very strong zHit of 5.87, which both led the league.
Strongest Category: Roop Dog with a 2.61 zAVG from a .327 AVG
Weakest Category: Mikey’s Team with a -2.01 zK from just 34 K
Closest and Best Matchups
By score alone, the tie between the Beliebers (Ben Hizer) and Hedenson’s Team would qualify as the closest. However, that was more a function of relatively mediocre performances from both. The closest matchup for categories was Alex’s Team vs Stephen Dudas’s Team with final totals of R | 35 – 37, HR | 7 – 8, RBI | 32 – 31, SB | 2 – 2, and K | 70 – 71 with Dudas going 3 – 1 – 1 in these toss-up categories, securing the overall win. The best matchup in terms of overall team performance would go to the Battle for Top Dog – Wolfdogs vs Roop Dog.
Despite the 8 – 2 victory for the Marylanders, both teams had very good weeks with a league leading average zW% of .624, more than a hundred points better than the .522 of the Dudas vs Alex matchup and with Roop Dog actually putting up a stronger xW% of .605 compared to Maryland’s .500. 2 more HR for Roop Dog or 2 more SV would’ve made the final score much closer.
– Ryan Fickes
Best Performance: Otto von Bettsmarck (Rob D.) had a strong week both in pitching and hitting categories on the way to a 7-2-1 win over Holland Otts (Clay Cotton). Rob’s team mashed 17 home runs, drove in 42 and batted .319. Strong weeks on the mound from Tyler Glasnow, Robbie Ray and Justin Verlander helped his team overcome a dud by Walker Buehler and post a 3.45 ERA and 1.02 WHIP.
Closest Matchup and weirdest team stat:
Closest matchup and weirdest stat are combined into one this week, at the expense of The Luzardo King (Kevin Dalby). The King of PL2 lost to Aaron Raised a Cain (Daniel Port) 9-1, but was insanely close in nearly every category. Between runs, home runs, RBI and stolen bases, Dalby trailed by just nine combined. ERA was absurdly close between the two, but Cain eked out the win, 4.06 to 4.09. He also bested Luzardo King by three wins and one save.
– Jordan Larimore
The Bottom of the Barrel
Best Performance: Colin Ward, this author’s adversary for the week, would have tallied 82 roto points out of a max 120 for the week, pegging him as the best performer of the week. Colin paced the rest of the league with a league best .294 BA, a runner-up 78 strike outs, and a top-3 13 HR and 5 SB for the week. For the second week in a row, Cody Bellinger and Jose Berrios had a lot to say about Colin’s finish, but they weren’t alone. Josh Donaldson pitched in two home runs, eight runs scored and a .391 average while rookie Fernando Tatis Jr. had an impressive .350 average and seven RBI for the week. On the rubber, Tyler Glasnow added 11 K’s and a 0.50 WHIP, to easily allow Colin to take our matchup 6-2.
Closest Matchup: Another week, another tie in the Bottom of the Barrel league. Erik Smith and Donny Moskovits finished the week tied at five points apiece. They finished remarkably close on average (.264 for Donny and .263 for Erik) and ERA (3.32 for Donny and 3.49 for Erik), but wildly different in Runs (42 for Erik and 25 for Donny) and Strikeouts (84 for Donny and 64 for Erik). Despite finishing with equal points, they both forged their own path. However, a close matchup isn’t necessarily decided by the number of points that the two opponents ended up with – sometimes it’s just a matter of how close they were across categories. Jessica and Kyle ended up in a lopsided matchup (Kyle took the matchup 7-1), but they ended up with two tied categories (HR and K) and within a Run, a Stolen Base, and 0.01 WHIP of tying three more. In the end, their matchup was definitely the closest for Week 2.
– David Fenko