Exit the Hyun-Jin

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Tuesday.

Hyun Jin Ryu vs NYY (ND) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 92 pitches.

This isn’t an opener to tell you that Hyun-Jin Ryu is not worth your time — he absolutely is and should be started as he faces the Orioles twice, but after tonight’s line of 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks, Ryu has performed poorly in three straight, now earning a VPQS for trusting managers. This ain’t an ace anymore.

“What’s going on?” you may ask. In short, his changeup (the Money Pitch of his repertoire) was an absolute debacle today, boasting just 2/31 CSW. Six percent CSW. His cutter wasn’t much better at a 13% clip and without the chases and strikes from either pitch, this went poorly for the southpaw. Robbie Ray has grabbed Ryu and made it clear who is now in charge in Toronto. I have to make it known that Ryu has faced the Astros, ChiSox, and now Yankees in his three poor outings, so let’s not get too crazy. I am removing the AGA label, though, and he’s going to fall a little. Just a little. Don’t worry, Ryu is still a solid #3 for your teams. That changeup will recover.


Let’s see how every other SP did Tuesday:


Zach Eflin @ LAD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 73 pitches. Eflin isn’t a bad arm to roster, but that doesn’t mean you should start him against the Dodgers. Against the Nationals next? Suuuure! Just avoid the legit teams, is all.

Julio Urías vs PHI (ND) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 96 pitches. His four-seamer was blegh and his changeup was…6% CSW across 17 thrown. But hey, he made it work with a fantastic breaking ball and figured it out. It’s the Padres next, though, and I really hope he figures it out then, too. He hasn’t been super dominating in a little too long.

Luis Castillo @ MIL (ND) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 7 Ks – 18 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 109 pitches.

WELL IT’S ABOUT DANG TIME. Kinda. Kinda?! Well, yeah, despite the share of the Gallows Pole, he earned just three whiffs on 29 changeups. UGGGGH. Now he’s going to get the Padres next and I’m unsure how to feel about it. The Brewers are a far different squad and even though the heater went 46% CSW today…wait a second. Sniff sniff. I thought I snelled something, look at his strikeout plot — that’s the BSB! Castillo has never really embraced the north-south game, focusing more on in-and-out with changeups down because they could. This, though, this could be something. Monitor it for next time, I hope it’s a legit shift in approach. Yeah, I guess this means I’ll lean start against the Padres next time…hold me.

Brett Anderson vs CIN (ND) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 39% CSW, 82 pitches.

Castillo, Shmastillo, Mr. B. Anderson is where it’s at. In no way, shape, or form can you believe in Brett to go 9/28 changeup whiffs again with a curveball that landed for 10/16 CSW, so let’s congratulate him and move on.

Dallas Keuchel vs TB (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 102 pitches.

Fine, it was no Gallows Pole this time around, but Keuchel took advantage of a solid matchup and that’s all you could really ask for. It’s lovely to see him perform at the top of his game in his last two outings after giving us some worry in May. Now it’s Houston and do you believe he can succeed like he did against the Jays last week? Ehhh, I wouldn’t chance it.

Chris Flexen vs MIN (W) – 8.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 107 pitches.

Whaaaaaat. This was Flexen at the beach alright, as the man had not his cutter, but everything else working well. We’re talking 43% and 47% CSW marks on his four-seamer and curveball, while his changeup went 7/30 whiffs. Against the Twins. What. Is. Baseball. No, I don’t think this is real and sustainable but hot dang is it cool to see from Chris. Flexen. Hey Nick, it’s Rockie Road next. Oh don’t you dare tempt me!

Kyle Gibson @ HOU (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 101 pitches.

lol. I sat here for a good five minutes and was so tempted to just leave this blurb as those three letters. That’s four whiffs and 24 called strikes against the Astros, and of course it worked. DUH.

Cal Quantrill vs BAL (ND) – 4.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 60 pitches.

Hey, this ain’t so bad! He chucked 95 mph sinkers and four-seamers, with secondary stuff that…didn’t do a whole lot, but whatever! His fastball was okay and the Orioles didn’t do much. Yay. I don’t trust the UnQuantrifiable, even if he were stretched out to 80+ pitches.

Trevor Rogers @ STL (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 38% CSW, 91 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. This train ain’t stopping as sliders returned called strikes, and his fastball/changeup each returned whiffs, called strikes, and outs. You gotta love it.

Kwang-Hyun Kim vs MIA (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 5 BBs, 6 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 102 pitches.

Five walks ain’t the strawberry jam we want, but at least Kim is up to 102 pitches now and can give you a solid ERA against the Marlins. Sadly, he’s likely to get Atlanta next and I don’t think his stuff warrants the stream. 7/28 whiffs on sliders is cool, though.

Lance McCullers Jr. vs TEX (ND) – 4.1 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 77 pitches.

So this actually went according to plan as Jake Odorizzi followed for four scoreless frames (yay!) but didn’t get a Win (nay!). This wasn’t the Lance we wanted to see as he earned just one whiff across 17 breakers and that simply ain’t right. Just 92 mph on his heater as well (typically 93.5 mph) as it feels like this was him taking it easy…or relaxing as he saw 100 rpm drop on his heater and changeup. Hmmmm. Let’s hope things are back to normal next time, including Odorizzi in the rotation.

Patrick Corbin vs PIT (W) – 8.1 IP, 1 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 110 pitches.

Just when we thought we were out, he pulls us back in. 11 whiffs on sliders and a 91/92 fastball as he kept the heater along the edges. Fool me once, shame on you…he does get the Mets and Marlins next though and ugggggh are we really buying in again? He did need 110 pitches to reach double-digit slider whiffs again, but an 11/43 rate with a 49% CSW is chefs kiss beautiful. FINE.

Taijuan Walker vs CHC (W) – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 12 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 40% CSW, 92 pitches.

Hot dang, that’s a King Cole! Okay, okay, I’ll start pushing Walker dramatically up The List. I’ve been incredibly resistant toward trusting Walker as he’s so hyper-reliant on fastball success, but the two pitches simply keep on working as they each carried at least 44% CSW in this one, making up nearly 75% of all his offerings. So while the point still stands, I haven’t been crediting how good the fastball itself has been and I won’t overlook it anymore, okay? Cool. He’s not likely going to carry a sub 3.00 ERA by the end, though.

Frankie Montas vs LAA (W) – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 98 pitches.

He had his slider working last time, here it was his splitter as he earned 9/26 whiffs on the pitch while his heaters kept doing their thang inside the zone. He’s now holding a sub-3.50 ERA across his last ten starts with a 25%+ strikeout rate, and that is all kinds of lovely. Keep starting the man.

Shane McClanahan @ CWS (L) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 89 pitches.

One run here came in on a terrible play at the plate, so let’s think of this as a solo ER and get all excited again as McClanahan does stupid things in a limited amount of time. It’s weird seeing 16 whiffs and just four punchouts and I don’t expect that stick as his fastball failed to put guys away as they have in the past. His slider and curveball were phenomenal, though, and the moment we see Shane unleashed is the moment he turns into must-watch TV and moves into the Top 35. Seriously, I think his ability is that good.

Alec Mills @ NYM (L) – 4.1 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 57 pitches.

He wasn’t stretched out and even though his slider and curveball were decent, he elected to toss nearly 50% sub-90 mph sinkers. You do you, Mills. I can see some value if he finds himself tosses plenty more pitches in a game.

Alex Young @ SF (ND) – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 57 pitches.

Young started with Corbin Martin following for three frames and neither arm did great. Welcome to the Diamondbacks.

Andrew Heaney @ OAK (L) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 18 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 98 pitches.

That’s a share of the Gallows Pole as Henaey gave y’all a Dusty Donut — a standard affair for those living the life of a Cherry Bomb. It’s the Giants + Yankees next and I want to start him for both, but the undulating season presses on. You don’t know which side of the tracks you’ll land.

Casey Mize @ KC (W) – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 103 pitches.

So he got you a PQS with a Win, and a 1.20 WHIP, but it came with a 4.00+ ERA and just three strikeouts. His slider was still good (sweet!) but not much else helped with the heavy lifting and now the tough starts begin vs. LAA and @HOU. He’s an okay start against the Angels, but it’ll get messy versus the Stros. What, Marcus? No, Houston. Jeez.

Eduardo Rodríguez @ ATL (ND) – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 80 pitches.

The eight strikeouts are wonderful as E-Rod earned 13 whiffs on four-seamers and while his cutter + slider went 6/13 CSW, it wasn’t enough of a supporting cast as the slow ball wasn’t there. Womp womp. It is the Rays next, though, and given how well his fastball performed, that could stick for next time. I’d heavily consider it.

Mike Minor vs DET (L) – 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 97 pitches.

His changeup was great and the four-seamer wasn’t so bad at 91 mph, and the command was…actually kinda good. I think Minor got a bit unfortunate here, especially against the Tigers. He gets the Yankees and Rangers next and maybe — just maybe — you can trust Minor for the streams.

Zack Littell vs ARI (ND) – 0.0 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 0 Ks – 1 Whiffs, 18% CSW, 17 pitches.

Oh my, Littell was a glitch in the Matrix, forcing Sammy Long to appear an inning early, where he did the best he could. In the end, it was five frames of four ER ball and not what you were looking for from a streamer in the slightest. Streaming Record: 42-32. It’s getting bad out here. As for Sammy, his curveball earned just two whiffs this time and I think we sit this one out for a moment. Just 65 ain’t great, either. He ain’t the Go-Long man, yet.

Yu Darvish @ COL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 100 pitches.

Aces gonna fall to their knees, seemingly ignoring the rain pelting their backs. COORS! WHY MUST YOU BE UNDEFEATED?! Man, not even Darvish can withstand its rage. The dude threw seven types of pitches here and earned a whiff on just two of them. That ain’t the Darvish we know and love. He’ll be back. With a vengeance.

Jordan Montgomery @ TOR (ND) – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 97 pitches.

The Jays are no joke, and The Bear isn’t so locked in for us to ignore it. He gets the A’s next, and I think his changeup and curveball are good enough for that.

Chi Chi González vs SD (ND) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 1 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 87 pitches.

One whiff? ONE. WHIFF?! How do you even do that across 87 pitches. I JUST DON’T UNDERSTAND.

J.A. Happ @ SEA (L) – 4.0 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 84 pitches.

Womp womp. It’s weird to see Happy fail when his four-seamer performed super well – 10/44 whiffs and 39% CSW – but that can happen when the rest of your arsenal is everything but the “nal“.

Tucker Davidson vs BOS (ND) – 2.1 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 53 pitches.

Sadly, Tucker left this one early with a forearm strain. Welp, pack it, boys.

Matt Harvey @ CLE (L) – 3.1 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 82 pitches.

I’ll be completely honest with you, I thought the Orioles had DFA’d Harvey. It’s the Mattdela effect.

Tyler Anderson @ WSH (L) – 6.0 IP, 6 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 102 pitches.

Ouch. Too many hittable cutters and fastballs here and Anderson gets slammed off The List once again. I hope one day he gets out of his Anderson Stupor.


Game of the Day 


Zack Wheeler vs Clayton Kershaw. Don’t mind if I do.


But Nick?! Where are the streaming picks? – I’ve moved them to the daily SP Matchups & Streamer Rankings article.


Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

3 responses to “Exit the Hyun-Jin”

  1. Bobby says:

    You had Ryu as a must start vs the Yankees and Corbin a must sit vs the Pirates. Not good.

  2. Jayson says:

    Mike Minor not so bad and even kinda good? Is that a joke? He took a L against the pitiful Tigers along with 6.35 ERA 1.24 WHIP 5K. All that in 5.2 IP. It’s a very poor outing! Especially based on the pre-game prediction. Let’s just be a bit honest here and call a cat a cat. Last night against the Tigers, Mike Minor was a massive failure and he most likely kill the ratio of anybody who dared to start him lol!
    It’s fair to note that last month he already played the Tigers at Detroit and he also got destroyed, right? When you leave with 6.00 ERA and 1.67 WHIP against the Tigers I cannot find a better wording than being destroyed!

    How is Ryu losing his AGA label while Nola hasn’t? In 8 starts since May, Nola had leaved with 5 of them with an ERA > 4.00. Let me refresh the memory of some! ERA of 11.25 then 4.05 then 7.20 then 5.40 then 7.20. Amongst his 3 quality starts, one was against the Brewers and one against the Marlins lol. But Nola didn’t lose his AGA label! I think he even increased his ranking in The List. But on another hand, Ryu leaving with 3 poor outings (ERA of 9.53 then 4.50 then 4.50) directly made this guy to lose his AGA label? The same Ryu who was praised as a safe ace before the beginning of the season. The same Ryu who has pitched better and for longer than Nola has never ever done in his whole career? What a joke!

    Once again, if Nola is a so-called ace and AGA, then tons of pitchers are ace lol. Manaea, Montas, Robbie Ray, and so on…

  3. Jack says:

    not sure where to put this, but here it is.

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