This is my weekly column where I suggest low owned starting pitchers that have a matchup in their favor in the coming week to help your fantasy baseball team. Most of these hurlers are to be used and tossed back to the waiver wire. Some of them will graduate from the wire and find a permanent space on someone’s roster,
Streaming Starting Pitchers Week 14
My process is to look at wOBA, ISO and K% to identify weak lineups and conversely for pitchers I look at wOBA, ISO against and their K%.
All statistics, ownership and projected starting dates are as of Thursday, June 20.
LHP Framber Valdez, HOU
Owned Y47%|E13% · vs. Pittsburgh Pirates – Wednesday, June 26
The window to pick up Valdez is closing fast. He’s looked great in his first 2 starts: 1 win, a 2.08 ERA, 0.85 WHIP and 15 strikeouts (29.4 K%). This write-up was turned in before his Thursday night start in Yankee Stadium, the same game I suggested we stream him in last week’s Straight Cheese*.
He has another good matchup next week when the Pirates come to Houston. They’ll be bringing their struggles vs LHP on the road with them. In that situation they rank in bottom 5 in the key stats: 0.276 wOBA (27th), 0.135 ISO (26th) and 27.8 K% (27th). In 11 road games they’re allowing southpaw starting pitchers to average a 2.51 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and over a strikeout per inning (10.3 K/9).
If he is still available in your league then pick him up now. His start against the Pirates appears to be safe but if he gets pushed back into the weekend series vs. Seattle in Houston he is still worth starting. Just note that the matchup isn’t as favorable as it is against Pittsburgh.
* Friday morning edit: The start Thursday night did NOT go as planned. He was roughed up to the tune of 5 earned runs, 4 hits, 3
LHP Martin Perez, MIN
Owned Y40%|E42% · vs. Tampa Bay Rays – Thursday, June 27
Look, it is another name from last week! He’s still owned in less than 50% of the leagues out there and he’s scheduled for another favorable matchup that we need to exploit for our gain. In 12 starts this season he has a 3.67 ERA, 1.30 WHIP and a 21.3 K%. Even better for us is that Perez pitches slightly better in his home starts: 3.19 ERA, 0.17 WHIP and a 24.5 K%.
Take those nuggets and sprinkle this on top: the Rays on the road vs LHP have a 0.313 wOBA (12th), a 0.137 ISO (25th) and a 26.6 K% (26th). They strikeout a lot and don’t hit for much power. The wOBA concerns me, but Perez’s wOBA against in his home starts is only 0.276, so he should keep them in check.
If his start gets pushed back it would be into the weekend series against the White Sox in Chicago. While not nearly as advantageous as the home
RHP Merrill Kelly
Owned Y36%|E25% · @ San Francisco Giants – Friday, June 28
There’s nothing great about Kelly. Through 15 starts he has a 3.99 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and an 18.4 K%. The overall numbers are pretty good for your roto team but streaming him has been an adventure. He’s allowed 4 or more earned runs in 5 of his starts and gone 6 innings or more in 9.
I’m suggesting we stream him next week when he takes on the Giants in San Fran where they struggle against RHP. And by struggle, I mean they rank in the bottom of the 3 metrics I look at: 0.260 wOBA (30th as in worst in MLB), 0.119 ISO (29th) and 26.0 K% (28th). In 24 games at home they are allowing opposing RHP to average 2.98 ERA, 1.14 WHIP and just under a strikeouts per inning (8.8 K/9).
Kelly can work with this. His last 2 road starts were stream-able:
- June 12 in Philly – win, 7.2 innings, 0 earned runs, 3 hits, 0 base on balls and 5 strikeouts.
- June 7 in Toronto – win, 7 innings, 1 earned run, 3 hits, 2 base on balls and 3 strikeouts.
He’s the definition of a pitcher you only start when the matchup is favorable and this matchup in San Francisco is just that. Roll him out there.
Here is where I recommend a two-start pitcher for you to stream. Please bear in mind that things can change after this article is posted. Injuries, rain delays, managerial moves, etc. can happen.
RHP Trevor Richards, MIA
Owned Y29%|E16% – vs. Nationals (Tue Jun 25) & vs. Phillies (Sun Jun 30)
I’m just as shocked as you are that I’m suggesting a Marlins pitcher this week. But did you know that Miami currently has the 14th best ERA and 13th best WHIP in MLB? I knew they were better but I didn’t realize that they were that much improved. Last season they ranked 25th in ERA and 23rd in WHIP.
Part of the revitalization of the Marlins pitching is Trevor Richards and his 3.54 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and 21.8 K% in 15 starts. He’s similar to Merrill Kelly in that even though his overall numbers are very roto friendly, streaming him can be dicey. He’s allowed 4 or more earned runs in 4 of his starts and has failed to make it past the 6th inning in 8 starts. But on the other hand, he’s allowed 1 or less earned runs in 8 of his starts and struck out 6 or more batters in 7 starts.
- Nationals vs RHP on the road: 0.303 wOBA (22nd), 0.172 (19th) and a 23.4 K% (16th).
- Phillies vs RHP on the road: 0.299 wOBA (24th), 0.141 ISO (28th) and a 22.8 K% (15th).
Both of these matchups make Richards attractive if you are looking for a two start pitcher. Another item to consider is that 5 of his last 6 starts have been very useful. If you factor out his June 14th game at home against Pittsburgh you have a 1.19 ERA, 0.89 WHIP and a 27.6 K%. I’m willing to roll the dice on Richards next week.
Streaming Starting Pitchers Week 12 Review
|Julio Teheran, ATL||6/13 vs PIT||1||6.00||1||3||3||2||W||1.50||1.00|
|Spencer Turnbull, DET||6/16 vs CLE||1||5.00||6||10||2||4||L||10.80||2.40|
|Weekly Total||2||11.00||7||13||5||6||1 – 1||5.73||1.64|
|Cumulative Season Total||23||121.67||58||120||48||112||10 – 8||4.29||1.38|
What did I do to offend Turnbull? I’ve picked him for 3 games and he’s rewarded me with a 6.88 ERA and a 1.71 WHIP. If you factor those 3 games out his season looks like this: 2.33 ERA with a 1.23 WHIP. Spencer Turnbull, you are dead to me.
Here’s a look back at the two start pitcher I recommended back in Week 12.
|Anibal Sanchez, WSN||6/10 @ CHW||1||6.00||1||4||1||1||W||1.50||0.83|
|Anibal Sanchez, WSN||6/15 vs ARI||1||6.00||2||6||0||3||W||3.00||1.00|
|Total||2||12.00||3||10||1||4||2 – 0||2.25||0.92|
|Cumulative Season Total||15||82.33||39||83||21||72||6 – 3||4.26||1.26|
Now that is what I am talking about! Thank you, Sanchez, for doing what you were supposed to do with this advantageous double dip! A few more strikeouts