This is my weekly column where I suggest streaming low owned starting pitchers that have a matchup in their favor next 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 21
My process is to look at wOBA, ISO and K% because they tend 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, August 8.
LHP Jason Vargas, PHI
Owned Y28%|E13% · vs. Chicago Cubs – Tuesday, August 13
Vargas is carrying a 3.78 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 7.4 K/9 and a 19.6 K% in his 20 starts this season. Those numbers alone should get your attention. What’s even better is that he has a 2.92 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 8.4 K/9 and a 22.7 K% in his 10 home starts.
The Cubs come into Philly ranking in the bottom third of MLB against LHP in the following stats: 0.297 wOBA (22nd), 0.160 ISO (21st) and 26.6 K% (27th). Over the last two
Lefty SP at home facing the Cubs have a 3.65 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and 10.0 K/9 in 11 games this season. Again, going back to just the last two months (5 games) southpaw starters at home facing the Cubs are putting up a 2.97 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and a 10.5 K/9.
This match up seems too good to be true… let’s hope it isn’t.
LHP Alex Young, ARI
Owned Y47%|E23% · vs. San Francisco Giants – Thursday, August 15
Young has been quite impressive through his first 6 MLB starts this season. He has a 2.78 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 7.8 K/9 and a 22.2 K%. In 3 home starts his ERA rises up to a still usable 3.38 while everything else improves: 0.81 WHIP, 9.56 K/9 and a 27.4 K%.
San Francisco comes brings their 29th ranked 0.282 wOBA, 26th ranked 0.148 ISO and 23rd ranked 25.3 K% against LHP into Arizona. In fact, lefty SP at home facing the Giants have a 2.45 ERA, 0.98 WHIP and 9.1 K/9 in 17 games in 2019.
The Giants have been playing well lately so there is a reason to hesitate streaming Young against them. File this suggestion under the “if you really need a streamer and you can afford a bad start if it happens.”
LHP Tommy Milone, SEA
Owned Y3%|E2% · @ Detroit Tigers – Thursday, August 15
Milone has a 4.33 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 8.66 K/9 and a 24.0 K% on the season (70.2 IP in 14 games). But here’s the nugget of knowledge you need to know:
- Starter – 5.19 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 10.4 K/9 and a 27.3 K% in 5 games
- Opener – 3.83 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 7.7 K/9 and a 22.0 K% in 9 games
While you’re not getting the strikeouts you’ll gladly take the other numbers when he is used as an opener.
Detroit at home versus LHP rank in the bottom of the league when it comes to these stats: 0.273 wOBA (30th), 0.130 ISO (30th) and a 25.1 K% (25th). Left-handed starters facing the Tigers in Detroit have a 4.89 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and a 9.4 K/9 in 9 games.
Since June 9 (two months) they have been struggling to the tune of a 0.268 wOBA (30th), 0.115 (29th) and a 25.0 K% (27th) at home facing LHP. In those same two months, lefty SP facing the Tigers in Detroit have a 2.66 ERA, 1.14 WHIP and 8.4 K/9 in 4 games.
As long as the Mariners continue to use Milone as an opener we need to consider streaming him when the match up is in his favor, like this one with Detroit.
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.
LHP Brendan McKay, TB
Owned Y40%|E19% – @ Padres (Mon Aug 12) & vs. Tigers (Sun Aug 18)
McKay has a 4.55 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 10.0 K/9 and a 26.4 K% in his first 6 MLB starts this season. Outside of that high-ish ERA everything else is something that would look great on your roster. If you factor out his messy start against the White Sox his numbers look very appealing: 3.08 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 9.6 K/9 and a 26.7 K%.
- Padres vs LHP at home: 0.316 wOBA (20th), 0.188 (16th) and a 26.0 K% (28th)
- Tigers vs LHP on the road: 0.217 wOBA (14th), 0.156 ISO (23rd) and a 24.6 K% (19th)
Everything I said about the Tigers up above facing Milone apply here, as well. You might think that the Padres game could be tricky, but it isn’t. Lefty SP at home facing the Padres have a 3.07 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and 9.9 K/9 in 14 games.
McKay has the ability to strike batters out and these two starts are in his favor. Let’s roll him out there and see what happens.
Streaming Starting Pitchers Week 19 Review
Typically this is where I take a look back at the pitchers I recommended two weeks ago in this column. But two weeks ago I was on vacation and didn’t do a write up. So, things will get back to normal next week.