This is usually 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. But with the All-Star Break upon
Instead I thought it would be a good time to reapply some analysis on the first half of the season to see who has been lucky or unlucky.
Way back in February I wrote an article looking at a handful of early round pitchers that I deemed were lucky in 2018 and should be avoided in your draft. I followed that article with a look at some pitchers going later in the draft that were unlucky and should be considered.
In the two
* All statistics are when pitchers started a game and are through games played on July 4th, 2019.
- ERA-xFIP -0.5 or lower
- BABIP 0.280 or lower
- LOB% 73.7% or higher
- GB% 44.9% or higher
- HR/FB 12.6% or lower
Here’s a list of pitchers that score “lucky” on all five metrics.
Both Morton and Soroka were named to their respective All-Star teams and for good reason. They’re putting up great numbers… but those numbers appear to be propped up by five pillars of luck. My advice is to shop them around before those pillars come crashing down.
Now, here’s a list of pitchers that score “lucky” on four of the five metrics; while not scoring “unlucky” in the fifth.
This list could be split into two groups: surprising and unsurprising.
Anderson, Miley, Minor, Turnbull
Castillo, Greinke, Hamels
- ERA-xFIP 0.5 or higher
- BABIP 0.310 or higher
- LOB% 70.7% or lower
- GB% 41.9% or lower
- HR/FB 15.6% or higher
Since there are no pitchers that score “unlucky” on all five metrics, here’s a list of pitchers that hit on four of the five metrics (while also not scoring “lucky” in the fifth).
|Reynaldo Lopez||White Sox||18||98.0||6.34||5.68||0.66||0.325||67.8%||33.0%||15.6%|
Let’s also split this list into two groups: Blake Snell and not Blake Snell.
Regarding Snell, he’s the only one that is surely owned in your league. He also made the “Lucky” list in my preseason article. This is what I wrote:
Last year’s AL Cy Young winner is currently being drafted right around the same time as Aaron Nola in drafts. Don’t do it. While Nola was the 2nd luckiest pitcher, Snell ended up being the 3rd luckiest right behind him. Snell had the highest LOB% and the 4th lowest BABIP of all 128 pitchers. He also had the 6th lowest ERA-xFIP.
This is a perfect example of paying for last year’s stats. You’re not going to get them. Chances are you will get stats closer to 2017 than 2018. Again, let someone else pay the high price.
Karma has over-steered from the Lucky lane into Unlucky. In this analysis of 124 starting pitchers he had the highest ERA-xFIP , 2nd highest BABIP and 12th lowest LOB%. Over the 2nd half of this season he should even things out and as a result lower his ERA and probably WHIP. Scott Pianowski at Yahoo agrees.
Hang on to those shares of Snell if you have them. If not, I wouldn’t necessarily target him exclusively. See if you can obtain him in a package deal.
As for pitchers not named Blake Snell in the list, they are probably out on your waiver wire. They’re worth a speculative add.
More Unlucky Pitchers
To dig a little deeper, here’s a list of pitchers that score “unlucky” on three of the five metrics along with not scoring “lucky” in any.
|Chris Sale||Red Sox||18||107.0||4.04||3.13||0.91||0.307||69.5%||43.0%||16.8%|
Some interesting names on this list. Sale and Ray owners can take solace that their luck could turn around in the 2nd half. As for the others, keep an eye on them and if they start turning things around add them to your roster.