(Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)
When it comes to being a season-long Toby, there might not be a better fit than Alex Wood. After last night’s 3.2 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks, he took a step back to a 3.65 ERA, 21% K rate, and 1.22 WHIP, all things that help but are far from you telling all your buds that he’s on your team. It’s been just five starts all year with games above 3 ER from Wood, while he’s fanned more than six just four times. It’s middling, it’s not sexy, but it’s consistent. Why am I saying this now? Because I don’t want you to overthink last night’s outing. It wasn’t good – just five whiffs and 89mph on his heater – but 25 CSW and a year filled with sturdy numbers should not be forgotten so quickly. It’s three more starts – @STL, SDP, @SFG – and keep the boat steady as you sail toward the finish line.
Let’s see how every other SP did Monday:
J. A. Happ – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. Sure, it’s not the elite strikeout performance we’ve seen from Happ often, but I will dang well take this. Good luck in your final tough matchups, Happ, we’re all counting on you.
Francisco Liriano – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 7 Ks. Ahhhh, the classic Liriano start that takes us back five years ago. What a wonderful memory, a celebration, a Birthday Party.
Kyle Gibson – 5.2 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks. This was Gibson’s toughest game ROS and he did a fine job against the Yankees. Sure, it’s a Philly and four walks, but you’ll take this and run.
German Marquez – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 11 Ks. Marquez, this is getting so stupid it’s amazing. I’m not sure where we’re going to put him for next year, but for his final three starts of the year, he deserves the Aces Gonna Ace label. I mean, the guy has a 2.45 ERA, 32.5% K rate, and 0.93 WHIP across his last 13 starts. JEEEEEEZ. And enjoy yet another Gallows Pole at 21 whiffs, you filthy animal.
Mike Minor – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. You’re just so wonderful Minor. Don’t let anyone talk themselves out of removing you from their lineup. Just let it ride, especially with the Padres next.
Sean Newcomb – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. Well well well, if it isn’t Newcomb finally having some success with secondary pitches, here going 11/41 CSW on sliders, curveballs, and changeups. Wait, that’s not good at all! His heater was fantastic and this rugged Giants lineup is terrible at heaters, which helped the southpaw cruise through the day. Blame it on the Giants. I think this is a trap for anyone thinking Newcomb is fixed. Proceed with caution.
Dereck Rodriguez – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Dereck continues to cruise with a solid ERA/WHIP without much in the strikeout area, promoting the idea that 2019 is going to be a major step back. I really want to believe that point, but the only issue I have with it is how I think he has room to grow, which may counteract some of the expected regression. I’m in a weird place, Alex Fast and I will be diving into this on our OTC podcast tonight, should be fun.
Wade Miley – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. This could have been worse against the Cubs, and is a 3.60 ERA worth the 1.40 WHIP and just one strikeout? Yeah, ONE STRIKEOUT. HAISTFMFWT?! I wrote about Miley’s success on Rotographs over the weekend and the tone is that Miley is pitching well over his head, but still better than his 2017 season and should probably be around a 4.00 ERA with a low K rate. Is that what you want? IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT?!
Justin Verlander – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace as he returned to Detroit. What a lovely day.
Lucas Giolito – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. I will definitely take this from Giolito, as boring and meh as it is. He elected to go more four-seamers over two-seamers this time after that two-game experiment (woot!), while 10/30 CSW on curveballs and sliders + 10/23 SNIP on changeups is okay. Not great, kinda mediocre, but okay. A step in the right direction after last week’s debacle, though this was the Royals and if he faces a tougher team next time, I’d be concerned…but it’s not. It’s the Orioles. HALLELUJAH!
Jake Junis – 8.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. And Junis keeps on keeping on. Twins + Tigers next and I’m all for this.
Jon Lester – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. Lester handed you a Philly, one out away from a VVPQS leaving the game early with back spasms (he’s still on track for his next start). Ehhhhhhh, at least seven Ks with it as well? It’s not enough to reconsider letting him fly, it’s just annoying. Stop being like my nephew, Jon. Just kidding, my nephew is the greatest. YOU’RE NOT JON.
Cody Reed – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. Be honest with me, did you expect anything different?
Jaime Barria – 3.0 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. This is not the Barria I anticipated with four walks in three frames as he was clearly off his game. Next are the Mariners and that’s incredibly meh. Maybe for a desperate weekend stream. Streaming Record: 92-44.
Corey Kluber – 1.2 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Kluber, no. He had a terrible second inning and was pulled before he could harm the team any more. Obviously start him next time he’s out there, hope this didn’t put you in too much of a ditch for your playoff week.
Adam Wainwright – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. Waino is back and acting like the Waino we wanted out of the rotation back in the spring. Yay.
Trevor Williams – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. Hey, Williams struck out more than a batter per inning! Oh, it also came with the expected ERA regression as he’s been a massive TEEs all year – especially as of late. What do you expect moving forward? Pretty much the same minus a few strikeouts. Womp womp.
Zack Godley – 4.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Godley has been on the decline for quite a bit, though at least he was producing strikeouts along the way. Welp, so much for that. It’s time to move on.
Jose Urena vs. New York Mets – The Prime Candidates of Junis/Minor/Giolito are all now over 20%, so I’m going with Urena against that terrible offense.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
Sandy Alcantara vs. New York Mets – I know it’s three days against the Mets. Thing is, the Marlins pitchers ain’t all that bad and no one cares about them. Alcantara can get through this and help.
Game of the Day