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Starting Pitchers to Stream Week 23 (9/2 – 9/8)

Welcome back to the FreezeStats weekly streaming article. Each week I cover anywhere from five to six starters who are available in at least 75% of Yahoo/ESPN leagues per FantasyPros. With playoffs and fantasy Championships on the horizon, I’ve stepped it up a notch. I’m covering seven streaming options for you next week. The options are plentiful but also carry some very nice upside. Let’s get to it!

Mike Montgomery (SP – KC) 14% Owned home vs DET, Tuesday 9/3
The Tigers have been running out a Triple-A club over the last couple of weeks. As a team, they are striking out over 30% of the time with just a scant 4.2% walk rate! That’s insane. They are making every pitcher look like Jacob deGrom. Mongomery’s ratios on the season are not pretty but he’s been bounced in and out of the Cubs rotation and has since been moved to the Royals. He’s been a little more comfortable in the AL Central and he’s increased the usage of his cutter. That’s good because his cutter may be his best pitch with an 89 wRC+ with above-average chase and swinging strike rates. He’s also been very good in Kauffman Stadium giving up just six earned runs in four starts there since coming over to the AL. Oh, and he demolished the Tigers last time out punching out 14 batters. Montgomery is not currently lined up for two starts next week if the Royals go forward with a six-man rotation but if he does, he would also draw the Marlins in Miami. I’d love that two-step and would start him for both if that’s how the Royals play it. STREAM.


Mitch Keller (SP – PIT), 7% Owned home vs MIA, Tuesday 9/3
Yes, Keller was blown up for eight earned runs in Philly earlier this week. No, I’m not all that concerned that it will carry into next week’s start. Forget about his inflated ERA, Keller’s FIP is a solid 3.92. He’s dealing with an extremely unlucky .479 BABIP and a 53.6% strand rate. Both are not sustainable. His 19% K-BB rate and 12% swinging strike rate mirror an SP3, not a streamer. Keller averages almost 96 mph on his fastball and his slider has been crazy in terms of whiffs. It has a 28.3% SwStr% and a 43% chase rate. He draws the Marlins next week, a far inferior offensive club to the Phillies and will be at home in PNC Park. They have a 26.6% strikeout rate and an 88 wRC+ over the last two weeks. As a team, the Marlins are rank last in the league in terms of production against right-handed pitchers with a 75 wRC+. You bet I’m STREAMING Keller next week.

Trevor Williams (SP – PIT), 14% Owned home vs MIA, Wednesday 9/4
Am I picking on the Marlins? You bet I am. I know they have been better of late but as I mentioned above, they strike out a ton and don’t draw many free passes. Williams has had a rough season but appears to be back on track. He’s only given up three earned runs in his last two outings and they were all allowed in Coors. This year of the home run has not been kind to Williams but he is showing some ability to generate more whiffs. His chase rate and SwStr% are up this year while contact against has gone down. I think Williams can limit damage and net a quality start with a high probability of a win. He may even find his way to manage a strikeout per inning given the swing happy Marlins who have a 28.3% K rate over the last two weeks. I’m STREAMing.

Jakob Junis (SP – KC), 17% Owned home vs DET, Wednesday 9/4
Have you noticed the theme of this streaming article? Yup, I am certainly targeting the worst offensive clubs. I’ve already gone over how bad the Tigers have been recently, so let’s see how Junis stacks up. His slider is the key to his success and he’s throwing it 44% of the time, an increase of almost five percent from last year. The results have been good with a 13.1 Pitch Value and a 61 wRC+ against his slider. He’s been able to throw it for strikes occasionally with a 43% zone rate. Unfortunately, his fastball and sinker are not good at all. He’s like a really, really poor-man’s Patrick Corbin. Normally, I wouldn’t love streaming him but given the lack of talent on the Tigers roster, I’m feeling some significant strikeout upside here. He’s handled the Tigers well this season with a 3.32 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. He has a great chance at striking out more than a batter per inning and a QS. Getting through the sixth innings has not been a problem as he’s gone at least six innings in nine of his last 10 starts. STREAM.


Pablo Lopez (SP – MIA), 8% Owned home vs KC, Friday 9/6
The Nationals just pasted Lopez for six earned runs in just three innings but the Nationals are scorching hot right now. Besides, it was only Pablo’s second start after a lengthy IL stint. He’ll be back in Miami against the DH-less Royals next week. Over the last two weeks, the Royals are ranked 28th with a 68 wRC+ as a team (100 is league-average). Now, over Lopez. You may not be all that familiar with him but I’ve been a big fan all season. He has a plus changeup, a plus fastball and mixes in a curveball. I love his change, it’s nasty with a 47.6% chase rate and a 60% ground ball rate. Hitters struggle to do any damage against it if they are swinging at it outside of the zone and either whiff or put it on the ground. The Royals are getting Adalberto Mondesi back, so that’s a concern but the lineup isn’t deep, especially without a DH. I’ll stream here.

Dinelson Lamet (SP – SD), 25% Owned home vs COL, Friday 9/6
Why is Dinelson Lamet is available in 75% of leagues? You guys, he has a 31.7% strikeout rate. He’s striking out almost 1/3rd of the batters he faces. That’s good fam. Despite facing the Red Sox and the Phillies in Philadelphia, he’s compiled 40 strikeouts across 28.1 innings in his last five starts with a respectable 3.54 ERA. That’s largely thanks to one of the best sliders in the game with a 50% strikeout rate against it this year. He draws the road Rockies and as we know, the Rockies are a completely different team away from Coors. They are 29th in MLB with a 72 wRC+ away from Coors Field and have a 26.6% strikeout rate as a team. Lamet is lined up to have a field day against them and I could see double-digit strikeouts for him next week. At a minimum, he should provide 6-7 strikeouts with nice ratios and a chance at a win. STREAM.

Dustin May (SP – LAD), 21% Owned home vs SF, Sunday 9/8
The Rookie has been fairly impressive in the second half for the Dodgers. Ross Stripling is scheduled to return, so it’s not a guarantee that May will make this start. That being said, the Dodgers are running away with the division, so some of their studs (Ryu, Buehler, and Kershaw) could see extended rest or even have one of their starts skipped opening up opportunities for the likes of May and others. The Giants are not the pushover they were through the first half of the season but are still in the bottom 10 in terms of wRC+ over the last two weeks. They have been aggressive as a team in the second half, so walks shouldn’t be an issue for May. He’s limited walks in his small sample, so hopefully, he can push six innings for the first time in his big-league career. He hasn’t flashed big strikeout upside but he throws hard (95-96 mph) and has a very good cutter. I like him more in standard leagues and I wouldn’t bank on a quality start but given the Dodgers’ offensive upside, he has a great chance to snag a win. I’ll STREAM in deeper leagues but since he’s scheduled for Sunday, only use him if you need a win.


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Photo Credit: Jasen Vinlove / USA Today

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Starting Pitchers to Stream – Week 19 (8/5-8/11)

Welcome back to the FreezeStats weekly article where I cover starting pitcher streaming options for the week ahead. I apologize for missing last week, I was out of town and didn’t have a chance to get out a quality product. You know the rules here. The pitchers I cover are available in at least 75% of FantasyPros Yahoo/ESPN Consensus leagues. I’m doing things a little differently this time. I am covering seven pitchers but only suggesting five of them. I discuss why I’m passing on the other two next week despite the favorable matchup. Let’s dig in!

Griffin Canning (SP – LAA), 19% owned, @CIN, Monday 8/5
Normally I try to shy away from pitchers going in Great American Ballpark given the way the balls fly out at alarming rates. For reference, the Reds have home run per fly ball rate (HR/FB%) of 16.5% at home this year which is about 1.5% higher than league-average. But, they have just a 95 wRC+ in Cincy and just lost one of their best hitters in Yasiel Puig. This is a below-average offensive club and Canning carries a 1.20 WHIP, 25.1% strikeout rate, and 7.7% walk rate. All of those metrics are quite a bit better league-average. Canning has been very good at inducing swings and misses in his rookie campaign and coming off a scoreless outing against the Tigers. More importantly, he’s only walked three batters in his three starts. Add in the fact that he won’t have to face a DH and I think he’ll be good for more than a strikeout per inning and a good chance at a win. STREAM


Note: Canning just hit the IL & will miss this start. Let’s find a replacement.

Vince Velasquez (SP – PHI), 9% Owned, @SF, Saturday 8/10
VV has been a bit of a roll lately and is even making assists from left field. While he hasn’t gone six innings in any of his recent starts, he’s struck out seven, nine, and six batters in his last three outings. He’s relying heavily on his fastball which is good and bad. His velocity is up a tick from last year and his 12.7% swinging strike rate on the pitch is among the best in the league. The issue is home runs. With a 24% HR/FB rate, it’s earned a negative pitch value. So this is a very boom or bust play. Since I’m a gambling man (not really) but this start is in Pitcher friendly Oracle Park, so I’ll take my chances. If his control is bad, this could go sideways but he could also throw 5-6 shutout innings with nine strikeouts. Let’s STREAM.


Dylan Cease (SP – CHW), 10% owned, @DET, Tuesday 8/6
Cease faced the Tigers in his Major League debut last month where he gave up three earned runs over five innings with six punchouts. That game was at home in hitter-friendly Guaranteed Rate Field. Next week, he’ll be in Comerica Park which suppresses home runs. In addition, the Tigers lost one of their best hitters in Nick Castellanos. Even with Nicky C, the Tigers have a wOBA of just .276 at home with a strikeout rate of 25.8%. They also walk about 2% below the league-average rate which should offset Cease‘s control. Cease averages over 96 MPH on his fastball and has registered positive Pitch Values per FanGraphs on all three secondary offerings. Cease needs to command his fastball better but I feel like he can dominate the Tigers and grab his second career win. STREAM

Danny Duffy (SP – KC), 11% owned, @DET, Thursday 8/8
I’ve already bashed the Tigers who will probably end up being the number one team I will stream against going forward, so I’ll keep the negative comments to a minimum. Some other interesting statistics regarding the Tigers at home include a .229 batting average and 34 home runs hit in 49 games in Comerica Park. That’s simply not good. Let’s turn out focus to Duffy. He’s had mixed results versus the Tigers this year but has yet to give up a long ball against them and has 10 strikeouts across nine innings. Duffy has backed off his slider recently and his strikeout rate has dipped as a result. I think he needs to bring it back but there’s no guarantee he will be utilizing it. Maybe he’s lost the feel for it, I don’t know. I’m not all that interested to find out if he can get the feel back. Besides, despite how poor the Tigers have been the last couple seasons, Duffy has still struggled against them. I’m passing here and Staying away.

Cal Quantrill (SP – SD), 11% owned, Home vs COL, Friday, 8/9
It will be interesting to see if the Padres start this game with an opener as they did against the Cubs a couple of weeks ago. Quantrill flourished in that start but also has gone at least 5.1 IP in his last four outings. So at a minimum, he should qualify for a win in this one. Over those last three outings, prior to yesterday’s start against the Dodgers, he’s killing it with a 0.53 ERA and a 0.76 WHIP. He’s also throwing his slider more frequently, which has been his most successful pitch. I don’t think he’s going to pile up the strikeouts but the Rockies have been absolutely brutal on the road this year, so I think his ratios will be fine. How bad have the Rockies been away from Coors this year? They are ranked 29th in both wOBA and wRC+ and rank dead last in strikeout rate at 27.6%. It’s almost like facing the Tigers. I’m Streaming here.


Drew Smyly (SP – PHI), 4% owned, @SF, Friday, 8/9
Did Philidelphia figure something out with Smyly or is his success related to the weak opponents in the Giants and Pirates? Well, let’s check his pitch mix. Here’s something, his cutter usage has jumped from just over 10% to nearly 30% in his two outings with the Phillies. He’s also throwing a few more curveballs and his fastball is way down to 38%.  The problem for Smyly is that his cutter has been crushed this year. What’s happened in his last couple starts, he’s inducing more swings out of the zone on the pitch and getting a ton of ground balls. I don’t actually think the cutter is any better, but he’s faced some poor opponents as I mentioned earlier. Now, the lack of familiarity may have helped in Smyly’s success but this will be the second time the Giants have seen him. I’m not buying into Smyly’s recent success given the poor performance of his cutter. The Giants have been much better since the break with a .322 wOBA good for 15th in Major League Baseball. I’m sitting this one out.

Jakob Junis (SP – KC), 14% owned, @DET, Sunday, 8/11
Unlike his teammate Duffy, Junis has been successful against the Tigers over the last couple seasons. He has a career 2.62 ERA against Detriot which is just about where his ERA is since the start of 2018. The Tigers have managed just a .258 wOBA against him and it’s mostly due to his devastating slider. Junis is essentially a two-pitch pitcher but the slider has basically been thrown 50% of the time. I doubt he gets through the lineup three times but should be just fine in leagues that don’t count quality starts. Expect something like 5+ innings with six strikeouts with two runs or fewer. That’s playable in deeper formats, so let’s STREAM

Chris Bassitt (SP – OAK), 23% owned, @CHW, Sunday, 8/11
I’m a little bit perplexed to find that Bassitt is only owned in 23% of Yahoo/ESPN leagues. His ERA is 3.84 on a year when the average ERA for a starting pitcher is 4.50! That’s insane. That’s nearly 0.25 over last season which means, his adjusted ERA (compared to 2018) is about 3.60. In addition, his WHIP is just 1.17 compared to league-average 1.30. Maybe his strikeout rate is extremely low? Nope, 8.58 K/9 which is a hair above league-average. I’m not really finding an issue here. His BABIP is low but he also induces infield flys (IFFB%) at 15%, so a lower BABIP is partially justified. He draws the White Sox and while it’s not at home (unfortunately), the White Sox are weak offensively and just lost Yoan Moncada. Even within their hitter-friendly environment in Chicago, they have a 90 wRC+ and strikeout over 25% of the time. I’m definitely streaming Bassitt.

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Photo credit: Laura Wolff/Charlotte Knghts

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Starting Pitchers to Stream Week 10 (6/3-6/9)

I can’t believe we are into our third month of the 2019 season and more than one-third of the way through the season. Low-owned talented streaming options have most likely been scooped up in your leagues but the good news is, more pitchers are coming with the Super-Two deadline passing (soon) and as injuries begin to mount. We got back on track last week, so let’s take a look at the season numbers to date.

IP ERA WHIP K W QS
Season Totals 241.66 3.35 1.11 238 23 22

Here’s the link to the running Google Sheet. Those are really solid ratios and right around a strikeout per inning. We have 45 starters streamed to date, so nearly 50% of them have been either a win or a quality start (or both). Not bad at all! Let’s get to next week’s streaming options for week 10 (6/3-6/9) owned in 25% of FantasyPros Consensus leagues.

Jered Eickhoff (SP – PHI), 21% owned, @SD, Tuesday 6/4
Monday is a very short slate with only four games, so our options are limited. Eickhoff is down to 21% owned after fantasy players were running to the waiver wire to acquire his services after his first two dominant starts. He gets San Diego in Petco and he has not been good recently thanks to the long ball. The Padres can hit plenty homers but they have just a .300 wOBA with a 27% strikeout rate against right-handed pitchers this year. Eickhoff’s only negative pitch per FanGraphs Pitch value is his fastball and he’s throwing it under 40% of the time. As long as he sticks with his slider and curve 60% of the time, I think he will handle the Padres. I’m Streaming here.

Chase Anderson (SP – MIL) 10% owned, Home vs MIA, Wednesday 6/5
Are we back in on Chase Anderson after a solid start in Pittsburgh? Well, he’s only walked one batter in his last two starts and faced a season-high 23 batters last time out. His velocity is back up over 93.5 MPH like it was back in 2017, the last time he had success. He’s also utilizing his changeup more and is rocking a career-best 11% swinging strike rate (SwStr%) and a 29.6% CSW%. He gets the Marlins at home who have a .273 wOBA over the last month but have been a little better over the last two weeks (.309 wOBA). They still don’t have much power, so I like Anderson as a streamer for the second straight week.

Tyler Mahle (SP – CIN) 12% owned, @STL, Thursday 6/6
I know what you’re thinking, how does Mahle have a 26.2% K% with a sub-10% SwStr rate? Well, he’s thrown a ton of strikes and freezes hitters. His CSW rate is an elite 32.2%! For comparison sake, Justin Verlander has a 32.7% CSW rate. He struck out eight batters in his last start against a tough Nationals team. He gets the Cardinals in Busch Stadium which is great for Mahle compared to his home park. The Cardinals have just a .296 wOBA the last two weeks are just aren’t clicking offensively. He’s curbed the walks bigtime this year with a 66.4% F-Strike rate and I think his home run issue will be suppressed in St Louis. Mahle is a STREAM for me.

Jakob Junis (SP – KC), 9% owned, Home vs CHW, Sunday 6/9
Junis has gone at least six innings and struck out at least six batters in his last three outings. His last two were quality starts and against the Rangers and Yankees. Not exactly easy opponents. It’s no surprise he pumped his elite slider over 50% of the time in both those starts. His slider has yielded just a .234 wOBA this season, so his recipe makes sense. He draws the White Sox at home next Sunday who are in the bottom five in terms of wOBA (.294) and strikeout rate (27.1%) over the last two weeks. The fact that this one is at home should keep his home run issue at bay. Let’s go STREAMING!

Devin Smeltzer (SP – MIN), 8% owned, @DET, Sunday 6/9
Smeltzer’s Major League debut was impressive, to say the least. He went six scoreless innings while striking out seven batters and walking no one. His CSW rate was 36.2% which is among the best in the league. He throws a fourseam, changeup, and curve but doesn’t throw hard. He’s going to get swings and misses from the change and curve but I don’t expect a strikeout rate over 9.0 K/9. That being said, the Tigers have been one of the worst teams in the league and have a .289 wOBA over the last 14 days. Comerica Park is one of the better pitcher’s parks for home runs and the Tigers don’t have much power, to begin with. The Twins should provide plenty of run support, so I expect Smeltzer to earn a W with very solid ratios and four-five strikeouts. STREAM

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Photo Courtesy of David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

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Starting Pitchers to Stream Week 5 (4/29-5/5) – Fantasy Baseball

It was a great week of streaming last week and while Odorizzi hasn’t gone yet as of this writing, we are looking at a near perfect week. This is rare and not likely to happen all that often, so I figured I’d mention it. So far on the season, here are the results compared to the MLB average for starting pitchers: 4.36 ERA, 1.29 WHIP with a 8.64 K/9 (MLB AVG)

IP ERA WHIP K W QS
Season Totals 90.99 3.26 1.06 90 10 10

That’s a lot better than a number of aces thus far on the season. Here’s the link to the streaming google sheet if you want to keep track. Let’s keep it rolling. Next week there are a bunch of options early in the week, so grab them now!

Mike Soroka (SP – ATL), 25% owned home vs SD, Monday 4/29 and @MIA Sunday 5/5 (Two-Start Week!)
Soroka should be owned in more than 25% of leagues. My guess is the Braves have such great pitching prospect depth and they’ve shuffled in several different arms to start the season. So fantasy owners are just streaming them as they come and go. So far, Soroka has only had two starts but he’s getting more than a strikeout per inning and a 55% ground ball rate. That’s a winning combo in the current home run environment. San Diego is an improved team thanks to Machado and Tatis Jr. but they can whiff quite a bit. Believe it or not, Suntrust Park actually is less friendly to home Runs than Petco, so that’s another point in Soroka’s favor. Also, I want to mention and give credit to Nick Pollack and Alex Fast and some of the PitcherList staff for creating and discussing the new pitching metric Called Strikes Plus Whiffs (CSW). Soroka is rocking a 32.4% CSW, which is fantastic. I will be referring to this article and metric going forward. Do I even need to mention the Miami start? Grab him immediately for both starts, because he won’t be on the wire for long. Easy double stream here for probably the last time with Soroka.

Vince Velasquez (SP – PHI), 21% owned home vs DET, Tuesday 4/30
This one is risky. I would prefer if this start was in Detroit because Comerica is one of the worst offensive parks for home runs. Citizens Bank in Philly, on the other hand, can be a launching pad. The good news is their 25.9% strikeout rate as a team is sixth worst in the league. VV has some negative regression coming but he’s walking fewer batters this year which has helped him limit the damage. His fastball velocity is up nearly one MPH, so I while there is some risk in this start, I’d be willing to roll with him given the strikeout upside and the probability of a win. Stream

Jakob Junis (SP – KC), 13% Owned home vs TB, Tuesday 4/30
Don’t get me wrong, the Rays can hit but they also strike out a bunch. Kauffman Stadium is not a great place to hit which is a point in Junis’ favor. He’s also added a little velocity to his fastball and throwing his slider over 43% of the time. Junis has also been better at home this season and his slider I mentioned is nasty. He’s getting strikeouts over 42% of the time on that pitch. Junis is rocking a 31.8% CSW which is a very good rate. I like the way Junis has been pitching early this season and think he can handle the Rays at home with a good chance at a QS and solid K numbers. Stream.

Griffin Canning (SP – LAA), 1% owned home vs TOR, Tuesday 4/30
Who is this Griffindor Canning? He is not from the Harry Potter series, he’s a prospect with the Angels and a highly touted one. He brings a mid-90 plus fastball, a plus slider and mixes in a change and curve. I was a lot more confident in Canning’s outing against the Blue Jays prior to the Vald Jr call up, but I think I’m still in. He has solid strikeout upside although I’m not as bullish in quality starts leagues because, with any young starter, a pitch limit will likely be in place. I would expect five-plus innings with around a K per inning and decent ratios. I’d stream him in moderate to deep leagues.

Tyler Mahle (SP – CIN), 7% owned @NYM, Thursday 5/2
I was disappointed at Mahle’s outing on Saturday against the Cardinals where he gave up five earned runs in five innings. That’s not good but all of the damage came off the bat of one of the hottest hitters in Marcell Ozuna. Mahle’s BABIP sits over .350 and all other metrics look legit, so I’d expect that BABIP to come down and Mahle can be a high-3s ERA type pitcher with just under a strikeout per inning. The Mets are right around league-average in terms of wOBA and it looks like red-hot rookie Pete Alonso is starting to cool off. (Right on cue, Alonso goes yard right after I wrote this.) I feel that Mahle can bounceback. He’s not my favorite stream this week, but he’s a decent option in deep leagues. 

Pablo Lopez (SP – MIA), 6% Owned Home vs ATL, Sunday 5/5
What is happening here? Why is Lopez still available in 94% of FantasyPros leagues? I told you stream him last week and hopefully, you did. Lopez currently has a 21.4% K-BB% (16th in MLB) with a solid 11.9% swinging strike rate to back it up. He’s been slightly unlucky in terms of BABIP (.329) and strand rate (64.1%). He’s only allowed two earned runs in his last two starts with 12 strikeouts. Atlanta is tough, there’s no doubt but Lopez is rocking a 27.9% K-BB rate and a 1.46 FIP in his starts in Miami. He won’t get any run support but should give you good ratios, strikeouts, and a chance at a QS. Stream

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Starting Pitchers to Stream – Week 2 (4/8-4/14): Fantasy Baseball

My apologies for missing last week, things were hectic to start the season! I’m back and I plan on getting a weekly article out either on Saturday or Sunday for starting pitcher streaming options for the following week. I’ll be using the FantasyPros ownership rate that combines Yahoo and ESPN ownership rates. The threshold for a streamer is 25% owned and under. I did this for the first time all of last year and here’s how I did last season. I love looking back and realizing I streamed Matt Boyd a total of seven times! Overall, he performed well for me and now he’s breaking out this year! No streaming Boyd this year as his ownership has jumped to about 40%, which is far too low. Let’s find out who this year’s Matt Boyd is.

I am hoping to pile up more strikeouts and wins without hurting those ratios. Without further ado, here are my week 2 streamers. Here were last season’s streaming results

IP ERA WHIP K W
Season Totals 666.0 3.57 1.15 615 41

Jordan Zimmerman (SP – DET) – 16% Owned; 4/9 Home vs CLE
I know that I said I wanted more strikeouts in the intro and Zim isn’t going to help there. It’s a long season though fellas. Zimmerman has been lucky with a .184 BABIP and an 87.5% strand rate, so those numbers are clearly going to regress. He is throwing his slider and curveball more frequently while deploying his fastball less often. That’s good because his breaking balls perform much better than his terrible fastball. The Indians have produced the league’s second-lowest offensive production with a .221 wOBA and are striking out over 30% of the time. This seems to be a safe six-inning quality start with 4-5 strikeouts. STREAM

Freddy Peralta (SP – MIL – 25% Owned; 4/9 Away vs LAA
Peralta twirled eight shutout innings with an amazing 11 strikeouts against the Reds in Great American Ballpark no less. I told you in the intro I wanted to seek out more strikeouts this season and early in the year is where I can grab them. His velocity is up about 1.5 MPH which is a big deal since his fastball was sub-92 MPH last year. Peralta has some deception in his delivery and the Angels are not familiar with it. The Angels have only managed to hit five home runs to date and will be without Upton and Ohtani. Feel free to use Peralta in the road here and just hope Trout doesn’t make him pay. STREAM

Trevor Richards (SP – MIA) – 22% Owned; 4/10 @ CIN
Here’s another high-risk, high-reward streamer this week. At some point, the Reds are going to heat up, but let’s hope the weather stays cool and Richards stays red-hot. The Reds are rock bottom in the Majors with a .221 wOBA and a 27.2% K rate. That’s almost like an entire team of Chris Davis’. Richards changeup is arguably one of the best in the game and he’s throwing it 36% of the time. How good is his change? Well, it produced swings outside the zone over 50% of the time with a 36% strikeout rate against in 2018. This isn’t a lock but how many streamers have 10 K upside? STREAM

Frankie Montas (SP – OAK) – 7% Owned; 4/10 @BAL
Montas has bumped up his velocity early on this season and has added a splitter. Montas averaged 98.1 MPH on his fastball in his first two starts and the splitter, on average induces the most swings and misses. Montas has some serious strikeout upside against a Baltimore team that loves to swing and miss. I would prefer this game to be in Oakland but beggars can’t be choosers. My only fear is his control which could mess with his ratios. However, I’ll still gladly take Montas and his 7% ownership rate but don’t expect seven innings. STREAM

Jeff Samardzija (SP – SF) – 5% Owned; 4/11 Home vs COL
Shark is back, well kind of. The Rockies are one of the worst teams offensively on the road. In fact, last year, they produced a 79 wRC+ on the road, that’s 21% below league average. They are just as bad to start this year as well. Couple that with the game being at home in Oracle Park and I just don’t see a poor outing from Samardzija. The problem here is, I don’t see much upside in terms of strikeouts. I’d stream him if you are looking for ratios but not much else.

Michael Pineda (SP – MIN) – 17% Owned; 4/12 @DET
Pineda looks good coming off of Tommy John Surgery and this will be his third start of the season. I’d expect something closer 90-95 pitches and hopefully six innings from the big man. Detriot is going to be a target to stream against and my early research looking at HR Park Factors show that Detroit is not a good park for home runs. I’ve even seen Niko Goodrum hit out of the cleanup spot in one game for the Tigers this past week. Let’s hope this start gives Pineda some confidence going forward in his comeback. STREAM

Domingo German (SP – NYY) 19% Owned; 4/13 vs CHW
When I said I wanted strikeout upside, I meant it! German has control issues and is inconsistent, there’s no doubt about that. His strikeout upside is huge, however. Wait, am I backtracking? The White Sox have had a nice start to the season with a better lineup than appears on paper. Yoan Moncada and Tim Anderson have been hot recently and the middle of the order looks a little scary with Jose Abreu and Eloy Jimenez. I fear that lefty power bats, Yonder Alonso, and Daniel Palka could do some damage as well. There’s a ton of strikeout upside here but given his scary walk rates, I’m staying away from German in this one. Yup, I’m backtracking.

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Starting Pitchers to Stream – Double Dose of the Dutch Oven

Starting Pitcher streamer options owned in 25% or less per FantasyPros Yahoo/ESPN ownership rates from August 20th – August 26th. Michael Kopech gets the call on Tuesday against the Twins this week for the White Sox. I don’t usually pick up a starter for his MLB debut (cough Sean Reid-Foley cough) mostly because of adrenaline, nervousness, etc. However, his upside for strikeouts is so high, he might be worth a shot. I would stay away for the first start but absolutely grab him and hold him if available. GRAB HIM NOW!

Derek Holland (SF) – 24%, Away vs NYM on Monday 8/20 AND Home vs TEX in Saturday 8/25
The Dutch Oven graces the streamer list for the second time in three weeks. The stream against the Mets seems obvious even though they did blow up for 24 runs against the Phillies this past week. However, offensively the Mets rank 29th out of 30 against left-handed pitching and have s 25.5% K rate as a team against those lefties. Holland has come back down to earth a little but he’s still getting strikeouts and has only allowed 4 ER or more once in his last 11 starts. STREAM.
Now for the Rangers. They have been on fire recently but that’s because Arlington is a launching pad all Summer. On the road though, the Rangers have a .300 wOBA and a 26% K rate. Not to mention, there’s no DH in this one. I think you can roll with Holland twice this week. STREAM x 2

Jake Junis (KC) 19% Away vs TB, Wednesday, 8/22
Junis has not had a very good Sophomore campaign. However, his last three starts have been good where he’s only given up four earned runs to go along with 21 strikeouts.  There’s two reasons for that, first he’s throwing his slider nearly 50% of the time and second, his fastball/sinker is not the homer-prone pitch it was earlier this year. Tampa Bay is a middle of the road team offensively but I think Junis can keep them at bay especially with his increased slider usage. I like Junis and his ability to get a K per innings with a quality start in this one. STREAM

Matt Boyd (DET), 24% at Home vs CHW, Thursday, 8/23
Over the last 30 days, the White Sox have a near 28% strikeout rate as a team, that’s the worst in the league by more than 3%. What’s more, they are in the bottom 10 in walk rate as well. Now, looking at Boyd, his slider has fueled his increased strikeout rate as he’s increased his slider usage from 10% to 30% this year. The pitch value on his slider is 14.4 per FanGraphs this year which ranks sixth in MLB for the pitch. Boyd’s fly ball tendencies posses a bit of a risk but his recent low walk rate combined with the White Sox elevated K rate makes this a solid STREAM.

Tyler Glasnow (TB), 24% at Home vs KC, Thursday, 8/23
Ok, I know Glasnow just got blown up in his last start, but it was against Red Sox in Fenway. More importantly, he went a season-high 6.2 innings and faced 25 batters. Including that start, Glasnow has a 3.38 ERA, 0.80 WHIP with 24 K in 18.2 IP as a starter. The Royals are bad, we know this. They have been a little better of late (20th wOBA last 30 days), but are bottom four offensively for the entire season. Outside of Whit Merrifeld, no one worries me at all. There’s no other streaming option that has 9 to 10 strikeout upside. Plus, we know he can go up to 100 pitches, so a quality start is still in play. STREAM

Reynaldo Lopez (CHW). 16% Away vs DET, Friday 8/24
I just pulled the trigger on Lopez for his two-start week annnnnnnnnnd it did not go well. He gave up four ER in seven innings against the Tigers on Monday and is currently getting beat up in the 2nd inning against the aforementioned Royals. Ugh, Lopez, you really let me down! If Lopez can’t get it done against those opponents, I can’t trust him here. I promise, I won’t be recommending Lopez the rest of the year. He’s a potential deep sleeper for next season, but I need to see more consistency. STAY AWAY

Week 2/3 – Pitchers to Stream (4/9 – 4/15)

Last week was kind of a mixed bag in terms of streamers. I did not receive a single win and the strikeout numbers were low. The WHIP somehow managed below 1.00 and the ERA was over 4! It really was the Reynaldo Lopez show who of course I’m streaming again this week until his ownership goes over 25%. I suspect that to happen by week’s end. The final numbers from last week:

0 W 4.56 ERA 0.98 WHIP 19 K, 3 QS in 5 starts

I’m try to do better this week looking at more strikeout upside and hopefully a couple wins. Here are my streaming options for 4/9-4/15.

Jakob Junis (KC), 24% 4/9 Home v Sea
No Nelson Cruz or Mike Zunino which is good. Junis will still have to deal with hot hitting Cano among other left hand hitters Dee Gordon and Kyle Seager. However, without Cruz, the Seattle lineup just isn’t all that scary. I like that the game is in Kansas City which is not only a pitcher’s park but the weather is going to be in the low 40s so again, favor Junis. STREAM

Nick Pivetta (PHI), 5% 4/11 Home v CIN
Yup, Nicky P is legit. 12 strikeouts in 9 ⅔ innings against only 2 walks. He’s given up 9 hits but that’s fueled by am inflated .375 BABIP. I don’t love his home park and the Reds have some hitters that can take him deep but they also have a ton of free swingers. Now that Suarez is hurt (who I believe is their second best hitter), I’m not concerned outside of Joey Votto. The weather should be cool, so that should keep the ball in the yard and it’s not like Pivetta has given up much hard contact thus far, under 21%. STREAM

Hyun-Jin Ryu (LAD), 10% 4/11 Home v OAK
Ryu had a rough first start lasting only 3 ⅔ innings, striking out 2 and walking 5 batters. This is a home start against the Athletics who were just mowed down by Babe Ohtani. Ryu is no Ohtani though. The Athletics have a ton swing and miss in their game but also a ton of power. Much of it from the right side except for Olson. Ryu isn’t a big strikeout pitcher, so I’m concerned that if he can’t get his walks under control he’s going to pay against the As. He gives up a lot of hard contact and home runs have been an issue in the past. I can see a blow up with a couple of HRs given up with men on base. STAY AWAY

Chris Stratton (SF) 4/12 3% v SD on the road
Stratton is destined to be a streamer all year long. The positives with Stratton: great home park, limits homeruns (yes that’s a skill to a certain extent), and he’s improved his velocity. Negatives: Limited strikeout upside, control is average, and the Giants aren’t very good. I understand that the Padres aren’t good but the ballpark is actually a better park than AT&T Park. Stratton has limited homers more at home than on the road, so this makes sense. I need to see more from Stratton. This has the makings of a 5 IP, 5 hits, 3 BB, 3 ER, 3 K type start. STAY AWAY

Chad Kuhl (PIT) 4/13 4% v MIA on the road
Kuhl is one of my sleepers coming into 2018. He’s got good stuff along with a 96 mph fastball. He really just needs to execute to be successful. So far after two starts, he’s got a K rate over 9.0 and a walk rate at 2.5/9. He’s been a little unlucky in terms of BABIP against at .375 due to an unsustainable 37.5% line drive rate. I don’t love Kuhl’s pitch mix so far (more sliders please) but the Marlins don’t scare me. STREAM

Reynaldo Lopez (CHW) 4/14 22% v MIN on the road
Not much to say here, his percentage will keep rising, so grab him and hold him if he’s available. He’s been dominating and yes his walks are a little high and his BABIP is cannot be maintained but his swinging strike and first pitch strike percentages tell me that his K rate should rise his walk rate should drop. STREAM until you can’t anymore.

Bonus Stream: Yonny Chirinos (TB)
Yonny isn’t scheduled to start due to the Rays having a 4-man rotation, good luck with that. Chirinos did make spot start last week and was solid over 5 innings without allowing a run or a walk, while striking out four. I’ve been intrigued by Chirinos since the start of 2017. He’s has success at every level, isn’t a major strikeout pitcher but has incredible control, gets ground balls and there’s value in that. He’s not fully stretched out, but if he gets the start, he could see 80 pitches +/- which should be good for 5-6 innings, 4-5 Ks and good ratios. STREAM (if he gets a start)