We Didn’t Start The Fiers
(Photo by Samuel Stringer/Icon Sportswire)
I’m sorry for using the overly abused headline but it’s a bit more pertinent today as Mike Fiers went 5.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks in his first start in an Oakland uniform. I was a little down on the move from Detroit, which may sound weird but Fiers had one of the easiest schedules out there taken from him when he became an Athletic. This one was against the Dodgers and I wasn’t much of a fan of it – bad headline here we come – and he killed it with 29/78 CSW (37%!). He did a great job of elevating with his four seamer, while using sliders to get strikes (10/19 SNIP). I’m still a little cautious of the schedule – SEA, TEX, @MIN, SEA, NYY next – but I think you keep rolling with it as it’s a Vargas Rule. Don’t overthink it.
Let’s see how every other SP did Wednesday:
Jaime Barria – 5.2 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Hey, Barria is showing his upside again! 30/92 CSW as his slider + changeup went 14/50 on whiffs (28%!). Too bad I have to say Blame it on the Tigers but at least we can have some confidence streaming him if the matchups line up.
Patrick Corbin – 7.1 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks. Aces gonna ace as Corbin earned 19 whiffs and a share of the Gallows Pole. 91mph Fastball as well is good to see and 39/103 CSW is luscious. Just luscious.
Jacob deGrom – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna ace. HE GOT A WIN Y’ALL. He’s my NL Cy Young if the vote was held today.
Heath Fillmyer – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Heath fits more as the guy to FillMyer gas tank, not FillMyer roster spot.
Andrew Cashner – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. Sure, whatever Cashner. You’re not getting my Bud Light.
Mike Clevinger – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. I don’t think Clev gets enough appreciation as he’s quietly given you a super solid year of 3.38 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 24% K rate this season. That 12% walk rate that had everyone scared out of their minds? Lowered to 7.7%. Dude is a legit #2/3 Sp for your team.
Mike Foltynewicz – 5.2 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. Folty hasn’t been cruising like he did for the first three months and it’s nice to see him roll with 7 Ks against the Nationals. Not a great WHIP, but I’m certainly happy with this outing.
John Gant – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Welcome, children. Welcome to the ceiling of House Gant.
Jake Odorizzi – 4.2 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 0 Ks. It’s a bit shocking to see a pitcher have six baserunners and zero strikeouts yeah tally 101 pitches without escaping the fifth, BUT HERE WE ARE. He got the Indians so I have some sympathy, but I’m not loving Odorizzi all too much these days.
Chris Archer – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Okay, so this is an improvement from his four-walk performance last time, but we need a lot more than this from Archer. *Suit man whispers in my ear* Ohhhh Coors? Yeah alright, we can move on then.
Yovani Gallardo – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks. This is so boring that I would rather spend an hour shopping for a YoGa mat. Just so I could wear dirty shoes and walk all over it. You’re a monster. That’s what YoGa turns me into.
Clayton Kershaw – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. This looks grea–What. ONE STRIKEOUT?! I have to give Kershaw a HAISTFMFWT?! I am so confused right now. Only four whiffs on the day, just 2 on 51 sliders + curveballs. I DON’T GET THIS. He really hung his slider up in the zone in this one, with only a pair of curveballs landing at the bottom of the zone or slightly under it. There’s a part of me that truly believes he’s the greatest pitcher on the planet when he’s healthy, but there’s another part that wonders if we’ll ever see Kershaw at his peak again. It’s a small part, okay? I’m just freaking out a little despite a start that only helped you. He’s the TATIAGA, after all.
Ryne Stanek – 2.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. A False Start here as Jalen Beeks came in for five strong after. Nothing special here to make me consider him any differently from Ryan Yarbrough, but good on ya kid.
Jhoulys Chacin – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. A PQS with 3 Ks? Sure Chacin, we’ll take it. Afterall, Chacin will do well when Jhoulyst expect it.
German Marquez – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 10 Hits, 2 BBs, 10 Ks. Impressive outing from Marquez despite the VVVVPQS as he earned a co-share of the Gallows Pole with 19 whiffs, tallying 10 strikeouts and an immaculate inning along the win inside Coors. That was a stupid long sentence. YOU’RE A STUPID LONG SENTENCE. He’s feeling his curveball recently, bumping its usage to near 30% in his last three starts after hovering 20% prior and it’s working. Fix that heater though, Marquez, it’ll hurt a lot in Coors. I’m okay rolling with this for now, but keep a very short leash.
Trevor Richards – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. This is a close one. One more out = PQS, but it’s essentially a 1.00 WHIP with 7 Ks and a 4.50 ERA…without a win. I’m taking it, let me know in the comments if you think I don’t deserve it. Streaming Record: 69-38. For that actual performance itself, great to see 40% changeups again, especially with 33% whiffs as well. 34 CSW overall and I like that he’s using a slider now instead of that horrid curveball. The man knows it’s bad and is trying something new. If it develops into a solid strike getting pitch…this could get interesting.
Luis Severino – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. Aces gonna almost fully redeem himself. 8:0 K per BB is gorgeous and a 1.00 WHIP is fantastic, but 3 ER against the ChiSox? Come on man. We want to love you again and you stressed us out so much in that opening frame. Just let us love you for real.
Robert Stephenson – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 5 BBs, 4 Ks. Stephenson returned for a hot moment and issued walks like they were baked goods at closing time. That has always been the issue for Bobby and if you’re hunting for treasure, don’t head to this island.
Mike Hauschild – 2.1 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 0 Ks. Leave it to the Cup of Schmos to produce a standard HAISTFMFWT?! on a given day. Yeah, MIKE. You tell him.
Vince Velasquez – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. So VV didn’t have his secondary stuff working – shocker – and the Diamondbacks didn’t let him get by with just his heater. Sadly, this floor will not go away for a while.
Blaine Hardy – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. No Blaine, no pain.
Brian Johnson – 7.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. It’s a long way to the top if you’re going to roster Brian.
Jose Quintana – 6.1 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Awww Quintana, you were on a roll because your heater had improved, but now your curveball and changeup just weren’t the same here. At least the fastball is still solid and there’s a chance for a rebound but I have to dock you points now. I hate docking points. You know my yacht is named Points, right? Yeah, and getting that settled in is the worst experience ever. YOU TAKE THAT BACK. NEVER.
Brett Kennedy – 4.0 IP, 6 ER, 11 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. I’m sorry Brett, I don’t trust people with two first names. Make up your mind! Yes, this is a Cup of Schmo. I can see a couple starts where his fastball command is good and his slider dots the outside corner for a good amount of Ks. Good luck trying to get that roulette wheel spin right.
Lucas Giolito – 5.0 IP, 7 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 7 Ks. I like that the ChiSox let Giolito fly after allowing a grand slam in the second frame, already serving up 6 ER as it doesn’t matter y’all. You’re the ChiSox. His fastball was up to 93.5mph – great! – earned 7/24 whiffs on his changeup – nice! – and trusted his slider for strikes – sweet! This is surprisingly encouraging for the longterm outlook. No it doesn’t mean start him moving forward, it means Giolito is still taking steps forward on his long set of stairs. And I mean looonng set of stairs.
Marco Gonzales – 5.0 IP, 7 ER, 12 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. Marco earned one whiff here against the Rangers, leaving plenty of cutters up in the zone and never finding himself in a groove. Just listen to Funkytown before pitching next time, yeesh. It’s a massive wave of regression, but I don’t think it’s the beginning of the end. If he does the same thing next time…well maybe we can start talking.
Tommy Milone – 6.0 IP, 7 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. Milone Schmilone. If only every team he faced were the Mets…
Jose Urena vs. New York Mets – It’s between Urena and Austin Gomber vs. Kansas City Royals and I’ll bet against the Mets offense + Urena’s propensity to go a little deeper into games. Derek Holland vs. Pittsburgh Pirates – I originally thought this was happening on Saturday, but it looks like he’s going Friday and is still owned in under 20% of leagues. Works for me.
Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer
Game of the Day
James Paxton vs. Justin Verlander – So many fun games! Ross Stripling coming back (but it’s Coors), Jose Berrios vs. Corey Kluber because duh, but in the end, I love watching both Pax and Verlander pitch and this should be a fantastic duel.