Uh-Ohtani

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Thursday.

Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Thursday 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 9 am-11 am ET.  

Shohei Ohtani @ TEX (ND) – 3.2 IP, 6 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 70 pitches.

There are so many pitchers I want to succeed this year, but it’s hard to find one we all universally want to dominate more than Shohei Ohtani and tonight, well, it wasn’t in the cards: 3.2 IP, 6 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 70 pitches against the Rangers. A few things to note off the bat: 1) Don’t allow grand slams, they hurt a lot. 2) The Rangers are kinda terrifying of an offense, aren’t they.

Seeing Ohtani struggle as a pitcher is a little different than others. See, I don’t expect Ohtani to go past the 130 innings mark he hit last year, a tally he earned despite never hitting the IL. Each disaster like this makes a larger impact than the typical starter. It’s not a fun time.

But I digress. For fantasy purposes, this doesn’t do much and I elected to lead with Ohtani to simply say “hey, don’t worry about it. Keep on starting him when he starts.” The stuff is still great despite the command disappearing. However, if that command stays turbulent and you’re in a two-Ohtani league, you’re going to have to consider how much value that roster spot actually is, especially if he doesn’t toss more than 130 frames for the year. Just something to think about.

 

Let’s see how every other SP did Thursday:

 

Joe Musgrove vs ATL (W) – 6.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 89 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. He’s really really good y’all. I’m surprised to see nearly 40% fastballs tonight after hovering 20% last time out, and I see it as a sign of adaptation when he needed to and it clearly worked.

Luis Severino vs TOR (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 83 pitches.

They’re beginning to believe. That’s a glorious line for Severi-yes against the Jays, fanning Vlad Jr. three times and boasting a 97.4 mph heater. Excellent pitch mix with 30% changeups for 32% CSW and 25 cutters + sliders at 50%+ CSW. We had concerns that we wouldn’t see primo Sevy and everyone who gambled are looking mighty smart right now. Here’s to his health sticking through the year.

Brandon Woodruff vs STL (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 89 pitches.

Boy did Woodruff get squeezed in this one. That said, we’re not seeing the massive strikeout numbers as he’s failing to earn the same whiffs on his four-seamer as we’re used to (just 3/26 in this one). I’m not sure why yet but I’m going to lean on the side of things figuring themselves out by the start of May. Just keep starting him.

Walker Buehler vs CIN (ND) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 95 pitches.

It’s not great, but it’s not bad and at least the heater is closer to his 2021 mark…which was a diminished version of 2019 and 2020. Hmmmm. We’re not out of the woods yet. Just gotta keep starting him and hope for WB Production.

Logan Gilbert @ CWS (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 85 pitches.

This would have been even smoother if the wind was so dang ridiculous in Chicago today. That’s another “good” start from Gilbert, yet I’m still waiting for his secondaries to click in. How bad could it be? 4/23 CSW on the slider and 0/7 CSW on the changeup. Oh. Yeaaaah. But hey, the fastball is great and it’ll keep being great. Texas has a bit of disaster potential if he doesn’t figure them out, though. (Yes, I’m starting him in my leagues, I’m just scared, okay?)

Justin Steele @ COL (ND) – 4.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 80 pitches.

He went into Coors and…survived? Right? Is this surviving? I feel like it says a lot about guy when we look at a line like we’re trying to read a post-it note without our glasses on. Then put your glasses on. IT DOESN’T HELP. I blame my 20/20 eyesight.

Dane Dunning vs LAA (ND) – 3.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 86 pitches.

Whoa, seven strikeouts?! I’d ask you what you were drinking, but you’re the DD tonight! Amazing. Uhhh Nick, he held a WHIP above 2.00. Yeah yeah yeah, I didn’t expect anything to come from this. Let him have his moment.

Jimmy Lambert vs SEA (L) – 3.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 49 pitches.

I imagine you have no idea who this is — with Giolito and Lynn out, the ChiSox gave the ball to Lambert, who boasted a 92/93 mph heater, a pair of blegh breakers, and a rarely good changeup. So I just wasted my time reading this. You sure did. I’ll be honest, I wish his breakers were better so we could name them the Lambert Chop. Then we could finally play along? Yes. Yes we could.

Casey Mize @ KC (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 88 pitches.

Sure, you got a 3.60 ERA, but at what cost? AT WHAT COST?! That’s as standard of a Dusty Donut and you’ll get.

Zack Greinke vs DET (ND) – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 85 pitches.

Wow Greinke, I can’t help but feel like you’re trying to do this without striking out any batters just to prove a point that you can. Meanwhile, HAISTBMBWT?! You gotta think of us here during your “experiment”, Greinke. Yeesh. I wouldn’t touch this unless I was in dire need to chase Quality Starts.

Kevin Gausman @ NYY (L) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 21 Whiffs, 39% CSW, 83 pitches.

Aces Gonna Ace. Does anyone not think Gausman is legit? 13/24 whiffs on splitters is crazy and that’s a well-deserved Golden Goal against a strong Yankee offense. He deserved better ratios and this isn’t even bad.

Sandy Alcantara vs PHI (W) – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 19 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 95 pitches.

Per usual, I watched every single pitch and it’s a mix of elation and frustration. His command isn’t nearly as good as we’ve seen in the past and he’s wrestling with it more than usual. At the same time, his stuff is just so filthy that he can still soar through six with one earned run, allow a hit in the seventh and tack on that run because duh. 13/48 whiffs between slider and changeup will always make me a happy fella + he’s already flirting with 100 pitches. Sigh. What a guy. He’ll calibrate one of these days and go absolutely bonkers. Be ready.

Cole Irvin @ TB (W) – 6.1 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 71 pitches.

Remember that increased velocity? Yeah it’s not even a full tick now. But he did well! It’s essentially a PQS with two strikeouts. You know better.

Josh Fleming vs OAK (L) – 3.1 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 67 pitches.

Six strikeouts in ten outs is pretty cool but are we really going to expect 10/40 whiffs from Fleming’s sinker moving forward? Especially when it lost a tick in velocity? Didn’t think so.

Luis Cessa @ LAD (ND) – 1.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 0 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 22 pitches.

Ugh. The first official “opener” has arrived and I’m no fan of dealing with this through the year. Reiver Sanmartin followed and did a wonderful job silencing the Dodger offense by way of the BABIP across five frames. Good luck trying to guess when that’ll happen next.

Kyle Gibson @ MIA (L) – 4.2 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 91 pitches.

Did anyone bother to tell Gibson that he was facing the Marlins? No? WELL WHY THE H*CK NOT?! At least this gets any wild notion that you should be starting him inside Coors next week out of y’alls heads. Move on to the next guy.

JT Brubaker vs WSH (ND) – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 82 pitches.

Coffee Cakes, I miss the good ole’ days. You’ve been demoted to Tea Biscuits until you become sweet and substantial again.

Adam Wainwright @ MIL (L) – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 86 pitches.

Oh come on Waino. Sure, we didn’t think you could repeat 2021 exactly, but you just trounced the Pirates and the Brewers aren’t that tough, right? CSW marks were great here, he just got laced in the field and that was his day. At least you were able to salvage some strikeouts along the way. He gets Miami next because that’s how it works being a veteran in the majors. You get the little things.

Kyle Freeland vs CHC (ND) – 5.1 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 73 pitches.

It’s Coors. You don’t need me.

Charlie Morton @ SD (L) – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 95 pitches.

Uggggh. Morton has been my leading example of guys who struggled early last year and were well in your best interest to hold through the season. This year is no different. Sorry it ain’t great right now, though.

Joan Adon @ PIT (L) – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 9 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 91 pitches.

Yiiiiikes. On one hand, I’m happy his velocity came back up to roughly 95 mph in this one, but honestly, you don’t care. His fastball was so dang hittable and the slider did a whole lotta nothin’ — just like me in the afternoon when I down a turkey club for lunch. WHY MUST I LIVE THIS WAY.

 

Game of the Day 

Kyle Wright vs. MacKenzie Gore – Well ain’t this amazing. We’ll see one of the most highly anticipated arms of the past decade and on the other  side is MacKenzie Gore.

But Nick?! Where are the streaming picks? – I’ve moved them to the daily SP Matchups & Streamer Rankings article.

Have Questions? – Join my morning Twitch livestream! I answer all questions there for free: 9:00 am – 11:00 am ET Monday through Friday.

Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

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.

6 responses to “Uh-Ohtani”

  1. William Sisco says:

    Somebody went to bed early :-P. Buehler went five and two thirds and should B have had the win if Roberts didn’t make the mind boggling decision to leave him in after 95 pitches and a walk in the 6th.

    • Nick Pollack says:

      Ah! Thanks for that. I began writing everything when Buehler wasn’t done, returned at the end, saw the new stat line and wrote the blurb…but didn’t update his line on the article. Thanks for catching that! Fixed.

  2. Christian says:

    Thumbnail art is too good.

  3. dude says:

    I know he didn’t start but how did Roasney Contreras look yesterday?

  4. Dragon says:

    The Marlins offense is not nearly as bad as you think

  5. lawrence womack says:

    If you had to choose-which one?

    Taillon or Cortes @ Balt.

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