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The First Zar Of Crushin’ It

I have to hand it to Danny Salazar, he’s looking like a stud these days.  He took care of the weak Reds last night – 7.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 7...

I have to hand it to Danny Salazarhe’s looking like a stud these days.  He took care of the weak Reds last night – 7.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – and now holds a 10.98 K/9, 1.80 ERA, and 1.00 WHIP across 50 frames.  That’s some beautiful, beautiful stuff.  Sure, I can mention his 4.14 BB/9 or 3.39 xFIP, but when he’s striking out this many batters while averaging about 6 1/3 innings per start, I have to acknowledge that he’s outperforming many guys who everyone pinned (myself included) to be locks for the Top 20.  He’s also dramatically lowered his hard contact rate to sub 25% levels while boosting his soft contact well past 20%.  I still have trouble envisioning him as a Top 10 guy as his Fastball is too straight and his ability to throw strikes can simply disappear in the blink of an eye, but hot damn you don’t let him go unless you get a hefty return back.  I’d rather bank on him continuing to carry your team than selling high and betting against him being a Top 25 asset all season long.

Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:

Madison Bumgarner – 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 11 Ks.  Aces gonna ace.  So much for Bumgarner’s “foot issues.”

Clayton Kershaw – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 11 Ks.  Fun fact: Kersh allowed three singles in the 2nd that accounted for his sole run.  He allowed just one baserunner – a slapped single to right – the rest of the way.  I hope you guys appreciate how we’re watching one of the greatest pitchers who ever lived in his prime.

Noah Syndergaard – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks.  And here’s another future hall of famer just starting his career.  Okay fine I’m being way too love crazy right now, but LET ME HAVE MY FUN.  How can you not love this man?

Chase Anderson – 8.2 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Anderson had allowed just 1 Hit and 0 ER with a single out left in the game.  Then he allowed back-to-back jacks from Hewyard and Bryant before Jeffress came on to get the one out save.  He just couldn’t do it guys.  Anyway, if you’re thinking about adding Anderson, it should only be in super deep leagues.  This upside isn’t here to stay despite how he flashes it about once or twice a month.

Vincent Velasquez – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 10 Ks. Finally VV gives us some of that luscious strikeout upside we fell in love with in early April.  I’d be selling high, especially if another owner looks at his peripherals that are skewed by this start + his 16 K CGSHO.

Wade Miley – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. Nope.  Still don’t like you Miley.  You need to do better than relying on BABIP to get 17 of your 18 outs.

Max Scherzer – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace.  But I wanted 20 Ks!  Man, you guys are spoiled.

Phil Hughes – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. Jeez, almost touching a new MS Score record there Hughes.  Can you be more unappealing in a successful outing?

Chad Bettis – 6.2 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks.  Bettis has limited upside, pitches his home games at Coors Field, and doesn’t deserve a spot on your team. This should be the blurb for every Colorado starter not named Gray.  

Zack Greinke – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks.  Sure, I’ll take this Greinke with how meh you’ve been.

Chris Archer – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 7 Ks.  The four walks really dull this start, since I’d take a 3.00 ERA and 7 Ks plus a dub from Archer these days.  That walk rate is now 4.56 per 9 and it’s freaking me out like Friday.

Carlos Rodon – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. Hey, look at that!  Rodon still has some life in him.  Don’t be silly by turning into a believer overnight, though it’s good to see the upside poking through.

Wei-Yin Chen – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks.  Yup, that’s Chen making his home in the NL Easy.

Dallas Keuchel – 6.1 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks.  He got the mega demotion on Monday and giving me three walks and a poor ERA isn’t helping his case.

Mike Pelfrey – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Has anyone ever fist pumped after adding Pelfrey to their team? I mean even this isn’t going to make anyone yell “JACKPOT!”

Colin Rea – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Is this Rea life?  Yes.  Yes it is.

Kyle Hendricks – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. After I give Hendricks a hefty raise, he gives me this against the Brewers. Dude, come on.

Cole Hamels – 6.2 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Some wondered why Hamels was lowered after gathering 18 Ks in his last two starts prior to this one.  It’s because of his high walk rate (now 3.47 per 9) and questionable 3.50+ xFIP.

Jaime Garcia – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks.  Bleeeggggh.  This is the one problem with Garcia.  He generally strikes out fewer than nearly all in Top 30, which means when he’s not performing like his normal self, there isn’t much to salvage.

Yordano Ventura – 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Yordano doing well?  Beyotch, PEAS.  Not a chance.

Jesse Hahn – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks.  He was ultra disappointing last time out and it’s not time to start betting on a recovery.

Jered Weaver – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 10 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks.  I explained to my roommate that Weaver is pitching slower than about half of my college pitching staff.  He asked, “Then why is he still pitching for a major league team then?” I don’t know Matt, I don’t know.

Juan Nicasio – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Our Call Boy was a bit disappointing, though he got the dub and gave you six Ks en route.  Sorry about the WHIP/ERA mess though.

Michael Pineda – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks.  Bu-bu-but 9 Ks and only 1 walk!  And a 2.00 WHIP and 9.00 ERA.  :(

Rick Porcello – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks.  Is it time to slow down the Porcello train? Ehhhh, I’d still roll him out against the Indians and see what happens.

Ubaldo Jimenez – 4.1 IP, 6 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks.  There have been just two starts this year that have had me saying “you know what, I’m glad I started Ubaldo tonight”.  Wait, you started Ubaldo twice this year?  Whoa, let’s not get crazy here.  Just a way to say Jimenez has only two good starts all year.  Avoid like Sandoval vs. cauliflower y’all.

Marcus Stroman – 5.2 IP, 7 ER, 13 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. This makes two straight nights of the Rays making fools of guys I like.  Crazy part is, Stro didn’t allow a single HR in this, just freakin’ ton of singles and held a 3.45 FIP for the night.  I have no choice but to lower Stroman a bit next Monday, but I can’t help but still be a fan of him no matter how silly that sounds.

Aaron Blair – 1.1 IP, 9 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks.  Because Alfredo Simon is a thing, this isn’t the worst stat line of the night.  I hope that makes Blair feel better.  It won’t.  Gee, thanks bud.

Alfredo Simon – 4.1 IP, 10 ER, 14 Hits, 1 BBs, 2Ks.  I mean just look at it.  LOOK AT IT.  It’s more grotesque than Buster.  I’M A MONSTER!

Today’s Streamers

Josh Tomlin Vs. Cincinnati – I can see people considering Nick Tropeano against the Dodgers, but it’s hard not to enjoy a good pitcher (Tomlin) going against a not-so-good team (Cincy).

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Jon Gray vs. St. Louis Cardinals – I can’t believe I’m actually endorsing a Colorado pitcher, but Gray has been excellent outside of Coors – and even once inside Coors – and he’s the best you’ve got, even if the Cards are hitting well.

Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer 

Alex Wood vs. San Diego Padres – Wood has been performing well as of late and has a great matchup to continue the trend.

Game of the Day

Mike Clevinger vs. Cincinnati Reds – It’s the MLB debut of the Indians’ top pitching prospect and I’ll be looking to give it the GIF Breakdown treatment.

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

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