Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Sunday 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 10 am-12 pm ET.
Braxton Garrett (MIA) vs CIN (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 43% CSW, 82 pitches.
Just two games removed from allowing 11 ER, Braxton Garrett is sure to have won over the trust of fantasy managers as a streaming option following today’s phenomenal 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 43% CSW, 82 pitches outing against the Reds. That’s a King Cole as his slider was stupid good at 46% CSW while the sinker stole a ton of strikes. Then there’s the cutter – a pitch he’s thrown just 9% this year – was utilized 29% of the time and returned an absurd 88% strike rate. Wild.
That last part about the cutter is a fun new thing he introduced last time out (35% usage), and considering the sinker has returned a 42% hard contact, this seems like a good fix to help stay afloat and get through games. It’s almost like his demise of a day sparked “h’ok, I need to do something different.” It may make Garrett something worthwhile moving forward, and the Giants next could work out well. Huh. Funny how quickly things can change.
Let’s see how every other SP did Sunday:
Mitch Keller (PIT) @ BAL (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 13 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 42% CSW, 93 pitches.
Hahahahahahaha. Of course he did. THE LIST CURSE ISN’T REAL Y’ALL. His four-seamer and sinker combined for 52% CSW as the Orioles allowed 18 called strikes between them. Meanwhile, the sweeper held an 85% strike rate and the cutter was once again heavily featured over the plate. I still don’t feel like I quite understand it, but does that really matter? You keep starting the man and forget everything you knew about
Kyle Freeland (COL) vs PHI (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 88 pitches.
With starts like this from Freeland and legit pitchers left and right failing to excel, it just makes this season feel like chaos. CHAOS. His curveball returned 41% CSW with 9/29 whiffs, incredibly remarkable when its season-high was five whiffs before this start. And yes, he still throws 88/89 mph fastballs. I don’t get it y’all. Is his command really that good? Despite a 30% hard contact rate for the season? That’s baseball, Suzyn. THAT’S MADNESS JAWN.
Tony Gonsolin (LAD) vs SD (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 85 pitches.
The velocity is still up at 93/94 mph (phew) but the splitter returned a…4% CSW. But at least it got strikes and helped him survive against the Padres. This feels like he lucked out like ole times. Yep, like ole times. Please keep it going against the Cardinals.
Collin McHugh (ATL) @ TOR (ND) – 1.2 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 49 pitches.
Imagine seeing this in 2014. He’s still starting? Why was he pulled? WHAT IS A BULLPEN GAME?!
Tanner Bibee (CLE) vs LAA (ND) – 7.2 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 98 pitches.
He stayed pretty verty with the four-seamer and was able to land a ton of changeups for strikes. What’s wild to me is how his breakers were kinda on the fritz in this one and Bibee still had enough to come through in a major way. Imagine how good he’ll be when all four pitches are working…
Logan Webb (SF) @ ARI (ND) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 98 pitches.
The strikeouts aren’t going to be as plentiful without the old slider, which means our expectations are met and exceeded here. Atta boy Webb, you’re the shining example every Toby wants to be. Isn’t that a Holly? Nope, those have higher strikeout rates. Oh no. Yeah. That’s the reality.
Andrew Heaney (TEX) @ OAK (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 93 pitches.
OH LOOK, YOU BROUGHT BACK THE SLIDER. 25% of the time for 43% CSW. WHERE WAS THIS THE LAST THREE WEEKS?! Nick, this was the Athletics. Nah, he’s blown up against worse squads – the slider becoming a massive strike pitch was everything here and I’m so glad to see it again. And now he gets Rockie Road?! It feels too good to be true.
Luke Weaver (CIN) @ MIA (ND) – 5.1 IP, 1 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 106 pitches.
Hey, that’s pretty good! Weaver focused everything in the same quadrant of the zone – down and gloveside – while throwing everything a tick harder and incorporating the cutter 26% of the time. I wouldn’t say it’s turned Weaver into something legit, but Weaver with any third pitch that doesn’t get destroyed is a plus in my book. Not enough to start him against the Yankees, but hey, it could be something.
Max Scherzer (NYM) @ WSH (W) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 83 pitches.
Sweet. The shoulder injury still terrifies me, but at least he’s back to 94 mph with 4/10 whiffs on the slider. I need to see more than ten sliders and a little sustainability every five days before giving back the AGA label, but this is obviously great news.
Brandon Pfaadt (ARI) vs SF (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 86 pitches.
The result was better, the fastball…still not what I thought it was gonna be. Much better command overall, though, and if his pitch separation + avoiding the heart of the plate is a regular thing, then we’re in business. He gets the lowly Pirates next, so I guess we go for just one more.
Miles Mikolas (STL) @ BOS (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 0 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 98 pitches.
Six frames without a single strikeout. HAISTBMBWT?! That’s some drrrryyyyy toast bucko. If you like your games decided by the baseball gods above, by all means, keep starting Mikolas. I think I’ll pass.
Patrick Sandoval (LAA) @ CLE (L) – 7.2 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 98 pitches.
Holy smokes that slider – 12/43 whiffs with 40% CSW. The changeup wasn’t up to snuff, but it didn’t matter with that stupid good breaker. We keep starting him and hope the slider and changeup can be dope on a given night, with the sweet wish of nights like these where he only needs one.
JP Sears (OAK) vs TEX (ND) – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 101 pitches.
Oh. SNAP. Weird to see 17 whiffs and just 23% CSW, but hot dang that heater is getting whiffs galore and both the sweeper and changeup earned eight whiffs apiece. Something is up here and it’s sad he has to endure the Astros. I kinda say throw it to the wind, start him there, and enjoy the ride after. These whiffs aren’t new and he’s far and away the best pitcher in Oakland now. I’m surprising myself with how much I’m in right now…
Louie Varland (MIN) vs CHC (W) – 6.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 97 pitches.
Oh dang, this was lovely, even if the ERA endured a Careful, Icarus in the seventh. The heater was at 95 mph (fine with me) and the secondaries were able to get strikes consistently. This can work. I may have underrated that heater seeing it at 94.5 mph in his second game of the season, though it’s the Angels + Jays next and it’s a hard call. I say “tough it out” given the weak SP landscape at the moment. He clearly has legit whiff potential on the back of that heater.
Hunter Brown (HOU) @ CWS (W) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 19 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 98 pitches.
That’s a Gallows Pole for Brown as he found the breakers with 9/25 whiffs on the curve alone. It allowed him to produce a stellar 43% CSW on the four-seamer and…12% on the slider. But the curve and heater! Great to see that tandem working and to be fair, the slider earned a good number of outs. And now he gets Oakland twice? Jeez, lucky fella.
Logan Gilbert (SEA) @ DET (ND) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 94 pitches.
Blegh. The Tigers, Gilbert. Your fastball should be doing better than a 28% CSW and hanging sliders all up in there isn’t the way to go. This isn’t a reason to panic, but we want mooooore. Matt? NEVER.
Joey Wentz (DET) vs SEA (ND) – 2.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 59 pitches.
A super early hook here as Wentz returned just 7% CSW on his heater. Ouch. That’s not it y’all.
Aaron Nola (PHI) @ COL (L) – 7.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 102 pitches.
Blegh. Coors is dumb and I hate it. The curve is still good so we wait for his next start and twiddle our thumbs in the meantime.
Lucas Giolito (CWS) vs HOU (L) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 88 pitches.
UGH. Velocity was back to 92.4 mph, the changeup went 4/18 CSW with zero whiffs, and I’m sad. Sure, he wasn’t terrible, but I was thrilled at the idea of Giolito having a proper resurgence. This is still viable for 12-teamers n whatnot, but the last game was legit ace potential. This is…not that.
Zach Eflin (TB) @ NYY (W) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 102 pitches.
Nine strikeouts?! Ahhhh, 14/29 called strikes with the cutter. Totally what I expected in this game. It’s so easy to predict these things.
Ryan Weathers (SD) @ LAD (L) – 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 88 pitches.
Weathers?! What are you doing here? Someone said you could validate parking. Well, yeah I can. Give me that. THANKS! You didn’t have to pitch 5.2 frames, I give it to everyone. Well whatever, when in Rome.
Kyle Gibson (BAL) vs PIT (L) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 95 pitches.
The changeup was the star again, but even against the worst offense of the last two weeks, Gibson wasn’t able to make it work. I feel like Gibson is the biggest coin flip of them all right now, making him the ultimate Sunday play. Good luck everyone.
Yusei Kikuchi (TOR) vs ATL (ND) – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 85 pitches.
Not gonna lie (why would I?), 7 Ks and 17 whiffs is pretty dang cool. 44% CSW on the four-seamer is lovely, but the slider failed him and he got messed up by Atlanta with three longballs. What a volatile arm Kikuchi is. I’d swerve around him and carry on about my day.
Corey Kluber (BOS) vs STL (L) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 105 pitches.
You really should stop starting Kluber. But I’m in a–yeah. That league too.
Colin Rea (MIL) vs KC (ND) – 3.2 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 81 pitches.
This is what the skill set of Rea produces a fair amount of the time. Those great moments? Those are Rea peaks, not real peaks.
Jake Irvin (WSH) vs NYM (L) – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 90 pitches.
Womp womp. I had some hope Irvin was able to pull this out (and hey, six strikeouts!) but in the end, just 20% CSW across 56 fastballs is all you need to know. The Tigers are next and there may be a sneaky stream there, but I’d avoid it if possible. I don’t love that repertoire.
Marcus Stroman (CHC) @ MIN (L) – 2.2 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 64 pitches.
YOU TOO?! Ain’t nobody safe around here. Well, Kyle Freeland is. WILL YOU STOP THAT. Stroman will bounce back, he always does.
Clarke Schmidt (NYY) vs TB (L) – 4.2 IP, 7 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 86 pitches.
Yeah, this wasn’t meant to be a good one. There has to be better options on the wire.
Jordan Lyles (KC) @ MIL (L) – 2.1 IP, 7 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 60 pitches.
Oh dear, Lyles is likely hurt as he sat 3.1 ticks down in this one. Poor guy, he’s just trying to give the Royals some innings this year.
Trevor Williams (WSH) vs NYM (ND) – 2.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 14% CSW, 35 pitches.
Joey Lucchesi (NYM) @ WSH (ND) – 2.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks – 1 Whiffs, 16% CSW, 31 pitches.
Game of the Day
Shohei Ohtani vs. Grayson Rodriguez – It’s always fun watching Shohei + I really hope this is the start where Grayson locks in.
But Nick?! Where are the streaming picks? – I’ve moved them to the daily SP Matchups & Streamer Rankings article.
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Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)
JP Sears had 4 Whiffs apiece on his Sweeper and Changeup, not 8.