(Photo by David Dennis/Icon Sportswire)
It’s the end of the year – always a sad time here – which means I’m looking forward to 2019 and I figured the discussion around Madison Bumgarner would be a fun one. After last night’s 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks, Bumgarner’s season comes to an end at 3.26 ERA, 20% K rate, and a 1.24 WHIP. You’re smart, you see a low K rate and high WHIP and know that DIPS aren’t favorable. Guess what, it’s a 4.42 SIERA and 3.99 FIP. That FIP is probably more accurate as Bumgarner’s 10% HR/FB for his career would make the SIERA look uncharacteristic. Here’s a fun Madbum fact for the year: Despite have a .15 point difference in his WHIP from 2016 (1.09 vs. 1.24), his Hit per 9 is exactly the same at 8.19. That’s because of a three-point jump in walk rate, the highest of his career at 7.8%. Mix that with a 9.2% Whiff rate – the lowest since 2012 – and we have a pitcher that I think will get overpriced in 2019. Give me the Clevingers, Buehlers, Flahertys, Wheelers, Marquezs (Marquezes?), and Taillons instead.
Let’s see how every other SP did Friday:
Jaime Barria – 4.2 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 6 BBs, 4 Ks. Nothing like getting pulled with a no-hitter in the fifth because you’re already past 80 pitches and have walked six batters. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how lucky you are, you’ll still find a way to mess it up.
Patrick Corbin – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Aces gonna ace as Corbin finished the season with a 3.15 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, and 31% K rate. I want to be hesitant about a lot of this, but at the same time, it comes with a ridiculous 15.6% whiff rate and if he heads to a pitcher-friendly park…2019 could be more of the same. He could head to the Yanks, though, and that might be a little tricky. Still love him, but not sure how much just yet.
Eric Lauer – 6.1 IP, 0 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. I had Lauer as the streamer when he was facing the Giants and I should have kept him as one here against the Diamondbacks. Womp womp. Wait, I can’t womp womp a good start. It’s just not right. Let’s raise a glass to Lauer, the man with a start that no one will remember as the great winter approaches. Amen.
Lou Trivino – 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 0 BBs, 0 Ks. FALSE START. Nothing to see here.
Jose Berrios – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 9 Ks. 40/106 CSW here as Berrios showed us what happens when his curveball is low-and-away with a fastball that pounds the zone. Still plenty of work to do on his changeup and there was some Blame it on the ChiSox here, but a solid end to a roller coaster season.
Mike Clevinger – 6.2 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. Clevinger, you are so wonderful. Castillo is the one that gets attention, but I was hoping for a season like this one after you finally got a lasting starting job last year, and to see you excel has been a joy. I’m buying the skills tenfold and I believe there’s even room to grow. His secondary stuff and command is that good.
Gerrit Cole – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Aces gonna ace. I was one of the staunch critics of Cole in the preseason and I’ve been eating more crow than Thenns. I’m glad to be wrong when it comes to a pitcher not only succeeding but pitching at a level where he deserves it (I’m looking at you Andrew Cashner). There’s little reason to believe it won’t continue again through 2019.
Mike Foltynewicz – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks. I was a critic. Then I was an advocate. The big difference was his slider becoming an elite offering in June and carrying him even as the expected regression hit. We’re going to be a bit harsh on Foltynewicz for good reason over the winter – a .251 BABIP, 77.1% LOB rate, and 9.6% HR/FB dictate a 2-star HOTEL, creating a near full point separation between his 2.85 ERA and 3.77 SIERA. Meanwhile a 27.2% K rate with a 10.3% whiff rate is sure to induce skepticism, and that 6.39 H/9 is sure to rise, turning his 1.08 WHIP into a 1.20 mark or so. It makes me a little hesitant to draft Folty next year as I’d imagine he’d be overpriced, but I’d love to own him for the season. Even a step back dictates a strong #3 arm. We’ll see where the chips fall in February/March and draft accordingly.
David Hess – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. For disappoint this year, the Hes– Hold up. Well, okay. Over the full year, that blurb was deserved with a 4.88 ERA and 1.38 WHIP. Fine. But that was a sneaky 3.05 ERA and 1.22 WHIP over his final eight games. Nicely done! That 4.99 FIP and sub 20% K rate show it was an illusion but hey, that’s a cool thing.
Corey Oswalt – 4.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. The False King performed exactly like an imposter would when put up to the task.
Hyun-Jin Ryu – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. We’ve been starting Ryu without hiccup since he returned to the Dodgers’ rotation and I’ve a bit surprised at how well it turned out: 1.88 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 25.5% K rate, 2.5% BB rate. Crazy good numbers. There’s your playoff ace. Now, the teams he faced in this stretch is stupid – SFG, STL, SDP, ARI, NYM, @CIN, COL, SDP, @SFG, and it makes me give him the shifty eye for 2019. There may be a good amount of value to be had once you start drafting guys that are expendable – his infamous injury history and the fact that this won’t be sustained through next year – but if you’re snagging Ryu as a #4, you’re going to be disappointed.
Jose Urena – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. Urena, this was a wonderful time in September with you. I’m going to ignore it for 2019, but don’t you dare think I’ll forget.
Chase De Jong – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. I’m impressed if you chased De Jong. Maybe not, it seemed like a questionable play, but it worked. Cool.
Jerad Eickhoff – 3.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. Whoa, 8 Ks in ten outs? EICKHOFF, BABY! I don’t think he’s all too relevant for 2019 but there’s an outside chance and I can see him as a deep add in NL-only leagues. Likely not touching it in deep standard leagues. Maybe if he has a really good spring.
Kyle Freeland – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 11 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Two baserunners and inning but just two ER? Yep, that’s Freeland’s 2019 in a nutshell. And just four strikeouts to go with it, making it even easier for me to nope out of this.
Kyle Hendricks – 8.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. I want more than two strikeouts, but that’ll work Hendricks. I’m still thinking of you as a solid #4 next year, I wonder what the drafts will look like.
Brian Johnson – 3.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. BJ is like the opposite of Black Ice. You know it’s there and you still get hurt anyway.
Nick Kingham – 3.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. It’s sad to see this man struggle these days after he showed off such a lovely ceiling to start the year. It’s possible he just needs the off-season to recalibrate, but for now, consider him as a dark-horse at the end of drafts and nothing more. Don’t forget, Berrios had one of the worst seasons we’ve seen in fantasy before he got it together.
Reynaldo Lopez – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 5 BBs, 5 Ks. It’s not pretty, but I’ll take it from ReyLo to end his season with a brilliant seven-game stretch averaging just 1 ER and 7 Ks per game. He struggled with his changeup and slider here and got a bit lucky, which is exactly what I didn’t want to see, but so it goes. There will be some calling for him as a “must draft” as a #5 SP, I’m kinda in that boat but recognize that there was still work to be done even during this hot stretch. Still, if the price is outside the Top 200, you can 100% count me in.
Martin Perez – 1.2 IP, 2 ER, 1 Hits, 5 BBs, 2 Ks. Sure, whatever Perez.
Zach Davies – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. Zach has been five-and-done recently and didn’t even give us that. That’s dumb.
Anthony DeSclafani – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Tony had a little more pitch diversity in this one, but still lives by his slide piece. It was…fine, but he hung one in the middle of the plate that was crushed out of the park. Fix that, Tony. I think he has a future as Tony the Toby, but his ceiling isn’t high enough for me to spend a draft pick on it.
Tyler Glasnow – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 9 Ks. You put in Glasnow if you needed K upside and that’s exactly what he gave you with 21 whiffs and a Gallows Pole to earn those nine strikeouts. ERA/WHIP be damned! Peering into the looking Glas has me thinking people will bank on Glasnow inside the Top 50 – maybe even 40! – for next season and I’m hesistant. I like the strikeout upside (duh), I hate banking on Glasnow developing consistent command. That just doesn’t seem right to me. Maybe he’ll get the Snell treatment now that he’s a Ray and suddenly focus more on breakers over heaters, but I wouldn’t bet on it.
J. A. Happ – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. Taste of Careful Icarus from Happ who allowed just two baserunners until he allowed a grand slam in the sixth. I’m still satisfied with the seven Ks and six baserunners
Ian Kennedy – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. Blegh. I find myself saying that a lot about Kennedy, especially when he gets the Indians.
Joe Ross – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Ross, maybe you’re a decent post-post hype sleeper for next year. I don’t have faith that you’ve suddenly come to command your sinker and slider, though. But there’s a chance.
Adam Wainwright – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. The strikeouts were surprisingly back against the Cubs, but the 4 ER is everything we expected. I will not be encouraging people to draft Waino this year. His name value is all that’s left.
Wade LeBlanc – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. I liked this pick as a stream if LeBlanc was available, but the Rangers had their way with him as LeBlanc finishes with a 3.72 ERA and 1.18 WHIP. He’ll be label as a low-end Toby next year – kinda like Urena – and let’s just forget that brilliant start to the season ever happened.
Thomas Pannone – 5.1 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Ahhhh, there’s the Pannone we were expecting to show up. I obviously feel bad for him, but also feel good for the people that would have been seduced if this actually went well. You’ve been saved.
Jordan Zimmermann – 4.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Yep, that’s the Jay-Z we all know and hate.
Lucas Giolito – 1.1 IP, 7 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. Well this was terrible. I wanted to end the season strong with streaming but it’s been a bad week for matchups and I happened to pick the worst. Yikes. For all the ground Giolito was making up in August, he sure gave it all up again in September and now makes us scratch our heads again for 2019. I’d be surprised if I chased it…maybe as the final pick in a deep 12-teamer. Streaming Record: 101-53.
Trevor Richards vs. New York Mets – I don’t love the options here and I’ll return to streaming Richards one last time as he looked stellar with his changeup last time out against the Nationals. Not out of the question he has that feel for one more game.
Sandy Alcantara vs. New York Mets – I know it’s a been poor command for two starts straight (both against the Nationals), but with few options here I’ll chase his upside as he could still pull it together. Pay attention over the weekend, these starts are subject to change on a dime.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
Tiebreaker Pitchers – So it’s not 100% over necessarily. If there are tie-breakers, your league may count Game 163 to your H2H playoffs or roto league. Stock up on the possible starters for the Brewers/Cubs/Dodgers/Rockies. You’ve got nothing to lose. AND Ivan Nova and Jeff Brigham will be starting a postponed game on Monday. Go figure, grab them both (Ivan over Brigham). Why not.
Game of the Day
James Paxton vs Texas Rangers – I want to see Pax dominate. I’ve missed it and I want one more game of it.
Chances Josh James pitches the bulk of the innings for Houston tomorrow?