It was a tough call to crown the NL Cy Young award last season, and many endorsed Zack Greinke after he posted a 1.66 ERA with a 19-3 record across 222 innings. Those who believed that he’d continue the same success through 2016 were met with a giant slap in the face as the Greinkster went 4.0 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks in his debut for the Diamondbacks. I had concerns that his 3.22 xFIP from last season would turn its ugly head in 2016, but jeez, I wasn’t expecting freakin’ Medusa over here. Poor fella, and while there will be some more bumps in the road for Greinke in Chase Field, it won’t be like this. Just suck out of the venom and we’ll be laughing about this next week.
Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:
Clayton Kershaw – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks. Aces gonna ace. I mean seriously guys, it’s Kershaw.
Jake Arrieta – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. To those who thought that Arrieta wasn’t going to pick up where he left off, just watch this GIF of him striking out Mike Trout with a Changeup – his fourth best pitch. Yeah, he looked like a bearded God as he threw just 86 pitches across those seven sterling frames and would have stayed in for longer if it weren’t a blowout on Opening Day. Of course he deserves his #2 spot on The List.
Jeremy Hellickson – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. Hellickson, what are you doing here. For realises, you haven’t had an xFIP under 4.13 or a FIP under 4.15 since you’re rookie season in 2010 when you pitched 36.1 frames. Who did you pitch aga—ah. Blame it on the Reds.
Max Scherzer – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. It’s not the dominating “no-hitter amiright?” outing that some were hyped for with Scherz facing the weak braves lineup, but you’ll take this and you’ll like it.
Cole Hamels – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 8 Ks. I’m telling you guys, Hamels is a stable #2 if you waited on pitching.
Felix Hernandez – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 Hits, 5 BBs, 6 Ks. And Felix can be your ace. Sure the walks are out of place, but that’s still just a 1.00 WHIP and the stuff is there.
Chris Tillman – 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. Well this is weird. Tillman’s outing was shortened by rain, and after getting Brian Dozier to pop out to start the first inning, he proceeded to strikeout the next five batters before exiting the game. It was raining pretty hard, the Twins aren’t a good offense, and let’s be honest. This is Tillman we’re talking about. Don’t put too much faith in this.
Raisel Iglesias – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. No walks? Check. Six innings? Check. Over a K per inning? Check. Anyone care to dispute Raisel’s Top 30 spot? Didn’t think so.
Chris Sale – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. When will Sale’s ERA match his FIP/xFIP? Seriously, we’ve been waiting for a super long time. At least these days this kind of start gives Sale a win instead of a loss.
Julio Teheran – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Oh come on, no one really started Teheran with confidence today, right? Like the anti-Nike, just don’t do it guys. Please.
Ervin Santana – 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. His night was ended by tears from the heavens before he could ruin it. I’m kidding, Ervin is actually a decent streamer this season given his K potential. Just pick your spots well.
Garrett Richards – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 7 Ks. It’s really tough watching Richards pitch these days. On one hand, I see a guy who has incredible upside, throwing 91 MPH Sliders well placed in the dirt for easy whiffs and Fastballs that generate grounders and strikeouts endlessly. Then as quickly as Brewers playoff hopes were dashed this year, Richards loses command of his power, leaves pitches up, walks batters, and can’t seem to figure out how to get an out. It’s reminding me of my former love of Yordano Ventura and that’s not a good thing. I can’t say that it’s not possible Ricky figures it out and dominates, but I’m scared that we’re going to see a lot of more of these kinds of starts, even when he’s not facing a loaded offense like the Cubs.
Jorge De La Rosa – 4.2 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. He was cruising through three innings until he realized he just isn’t that good. Every Rosa has its thorn…
Madison Bumgarner – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 5 BBs, 6 Ks. For those wondering what the heck happened here, MadBum was simply lost on the hill for the first two innings. He then settled down and became the sidewinding flamethrower you know and love, but his pitch count was too much to continue given the clear rout that was unfolding. He’s fine and no I’m not stripping him of his Top 5 status.
Drew Smyly – 6.2 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Yeah, Smyly is much better than this, but the Blue Jays are really really good. For the record, it’s safe to treat the Rockies in Coors and the Blue Jays on the same level for the time being. The Cubs are close behind. Anyway, I’m starting him against the O’s.
R.A. Dickey – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Dickey once told me that his uncle’s friend’s girlfriend’s cousin babysits John Gibbons’ grandkids. I later found out that Dickey’s uncle doesn’t have any friends. Don’t trust a knuckleballer.
Rich Hill – 2.2 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Hill was on the…mound simply because Sonny Gray got sudden food poisoning, leading to a shortened start for the aging lefty. I can’t say that I’m discouraged from him performance and despite the high ERA, everything else looks in line. Maybe his next start in Seattle isn’t so bad after all. Ehhhh, wouldn’t risk it.
Wily Peralta – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. Yup, that’s Peralta alright.
Tyson Ross – 5.1 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Look at this! Ross walked only one batter in 5.1 innings! Yay…
Martin Perez vs. Seattle Mariners – Blegh, I hate it, but you could do worse than Perez who you’re only starting if you’re so concerned about grabbing enough Wins during your H2H matchup with some chance of not decimating your WHIP/ERA.
J.A. Happ vs. Tampa Bay Rays – Still a risky play to stream (as we just went over two seconds ago), and who knows which Happ will show up. Let’s cross our fingers it’s the one that Ray Searage fixed like his old Harley.
Aaron Nola vs. Cincinnatti Reds – Nola really should be owned everywhere, but where he isn’t you’re better off tossing him out there for a solid matchup against the Reds.
Brandon Finnegan vs. Philadelphia Phillies – Here’s your deep stream if you’re so inclined to do that sort of thing right now. I have no idea what kind of Finnegan will show up, but he has the upside to dominate, and the Phils are as good of a team as any for that beast to be unleashed.
Game of the Day
Noah Syndergaard vs. Kansas City Royals – Thor is kinda my favorite pitcher in the bigs right now, up there with Arrieta, Kershaw, and Stroman. If he’s not yours, then you best look into yourself to find out why the hell not as you watch him get some petty revenge against the Royals.