Letting The Lyons Out Of The Cage

I had Tyler Lyons listed as a lottery ticket in the pre-season rankings, and while he hasn’t gotten much time on the hill, Lyons can be a producer if given...

I had Tyler Lyons listed as a lottery ticket in the pre-season rankings, and while he hasn’t gotten much time on the hill, Lyons can be a producer if given the innings.  Last night he went 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks , which is a QS for stupid reasons, but is still kinda decent.  He’ll hang around this middling line, which could be a nice extra push for some of you in the playoffs.  In his four starts he holds a 9.61 K/9, a 3.59 xFIP, and a 28.2% soft contact rate, which is a lot better than you were expecting.  He’s pretty much untouched across the board – owned in only 0.2% of ESPN leagues – which means that he could be a sneaky add than subliminal messages during Saturday morning cartoons.  He’ll probably get one or two more starts this season and if you follow closely you could get that value all for yourself.

Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:

Sonny Gray – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks.  Almost led with Gray just because I want y’all to realize that across his last 13 starts since June 19th Gray has a 3.16 ERA (3.78 xFIP) with a 6.33 K/9 and 2.47 BB/9.  That’s just sooo…bland.  He’s being loved by so many as a Top 15 guy and those kind of numbers make me question why he’s in my Top 20.  Don’t forget this entering 2016.

Clayton Kershaw – 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 15 Ks.  Aces gonna freakin’ ace.  He gave up two extra hits with 2 outs in the ninth, and was left in despite ending with over 130 pitches and holding onto a 2-1 lead.  That’s Kershaw for you, the best pitcher in the world.

R.A. Dickey – 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks.  Dickey told me that he pitched this game for his aunt Delores.  He doesn’t have an aunt Delores.  Don’t trust a knuckleballer.

Tommy Milone – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. This is the best start you’ll ever see from Milone this season – though he essentially did the same thing in his first start with 2 hits and 2 walks – and you missed it.  Welp that’s baseball.

Yordano Ventura – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 11 Ks.  Has he figured it out?  I’m not sure yet.  We know he can lose it in a heartbeat, which is the reason that a pair of dominant starts like these aren’t propelling him to Top 25 territory.  Obviously ride him out through the season, but I’m very conflicted if I buy a full season’s worth for 2016.

Raisel Iglesias – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 10 Ks.  That’s three straight double-digit K games and people are fawning over him like a litter of puppies.  Problem is that the Reds are moving him to the bullpen shortly, and I wouldn’t be shocked if the news dropped sometime this week.  Hope you enjoyed the ride!

Ian Kennedy – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 12 Ks.  I have to hand it to Kennedy, I had him as the Call Boy and all, but I didn’t really buy that he would continue performing this well.  He now has a 3.30 xFIP across his last super dominant five starts so you best be holding onto him through September.

Mike Leake – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks.  Looks like the BABIP Gods were merciful today.  Maybe their pipes needed fixing.

Andrew Heaney – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. Ehhh, more Ks than expected but I don’t see Heaney looking all too much better than this.

Cole Hamels – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks.  I’ll take this from Hamels…kinda.  It’s a step in the right direction and that K/BB is purty.  Just give me a little better ERA/WHIP next time, k?

Carlos Rodon – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks.  Huh.  This is a boring start from one of the biggest boom-bust guys around.  Can’t get rid of those walks, though.

Taijuan Walker – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks.  This isn’t what I signed up for.

Max Scherzer – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 11 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks. Aces gonna…wait a second.  11 Hits?  You’re lucky none of those were HRs  Assistant whispers in ear…Wha?…$1 Tacos???..Assistant whispers with a little more vigor…Oh you don’t say…So apparently Moss hit a solo shot in the second and Scherzer squirmed out of trouble in every inning.  I’m super tempted to lower Scherzer from #3 next week, but that K/BB is just so sexy.  I have a lot of thinking to do.

Masahiro Tanaka – 6.1 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks.  An inherited runner from a single walk in the 7th, a solo shot, a two out double and a sac-fly from a single hit led to all four of Tanaka’s runs.  Completely different than getting smacked around so keep the faith.

Adam Conley – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks.  If I were investing in Conley, I’d be getting the super-small kiddie Conley.  I just want like a 1 second pull of the soft serve machi—That’s enough!  THAT’S ENOUGH!

Matt Harvey – 6.1 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks. It had to be like this after many articles were spitting out the same “he’s allowed only 2 ER in his last five starts combined!” stat like we should all marvel in his dominance.  Hey fellas, shortly before that he had a three game span where he coughed up 13 walks.  Sure, he’s great n all but let’s not go crazy and forget we’re talking about baseball: The sport where cherry-picked stats are cooler than showboating.

Chase Anderson – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks.  Blegh.

Scott Kazmir – 4.1 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks.  Kaz has held a solid floor all year and while the WHIP is far from ideal, he was able to prevent implosion unlike many a pitcher I know.  Especially that kid Charlie on the local little league team.  He just can’t keep it together.  COME ON CHARLIE, STEP UP YOUR GAME.

Jason Hammel – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks.  It’s time to move on from Hammel.  It makes me think that his time with Oakland last year wasn’t as much of a problem with location, but rather being gassed by the end of the season.  Makes you think…

Zach Davies – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Not your standard Cup of Schmo since he’ll stick around for a few turns in the rotation.  His minor league numbers dictate an okay K/BB rate and I’m not expecting much of anything from Davies.

Erasmo Ramirez – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks.  He’s super middle of the road.  Yes, Erasmo is the double solid yellow line.

Jon Gray – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 10 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks.  Gray has limited upside, pitches his home games at Coors Field, and doesn’t deserve a spot on your team.  This should be the blurb for every Colorado starter.

Williams Perez – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks.  Sir W failed, once again, to make owners reconsider their stance on him…and now I’m imagining someone doing interpretive dance on top of Perez’s back.  “Should I change from my towering tree stance?  Nah, this feels right.”

Kevin Gausman – 2.1 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks.  I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again.  The hype surrounding Gausman will never be realized from a guy who throws Fastballs without movement and relies on a Split-Change as his main secondary pitch.  Just too much inconsistency to handle.

Jeff Locke – 3.2 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. Sorry Locke, but I like John more than Jeff.  No, not that bald guy from Lost, the Father of Classical Liberalism you uncultured swine.  No need to get nasty Nick.  I’m sorry y’all, I haven’t had coffee today.  I never drink it, but I still haven’t had it.

Aaron Nola – 4.0 IP, 6 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. Those still holding onto Nola, consider dropping him as has maybe one – at most two – starts left for the Phillies.  Don’t worry, we’ll be talking all about Nola next year.

Trevor Bauer – 1.1 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks.  Yep, this is why Trevor Bauer is a Cherry Bomb.  He can give you a high K night then blow up in your face next time.

Henry Owens – 1.2 IP, 7 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks.  Owens could be a more consistent guy next season as he matures in the Red Sox rotation, but there’s little reason to trust that what happen this season.

Randy Wolf – 3.2 IP, 8 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks.  That’s more like the dire situation we expect from Wolf.  Sure, there was a time he was relevant – like 5 years ago – but he deserves no spot on your team.

Today’s Streamers

Mat Latos vs. San Diego Padres – I really, really don’t want to do this one, but given that there are few games being played this Thursday, it’s this or Taylor Jungmann against the Pirates, and the latter isn’t a good matchup at all for the lanky Brewer.  You could pray from a ERA/WHIP victory with Kyle Gibson against the ChiSox but I personally wouldn’t touch that.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Aaron Brooks vs. Seattle Mariners – I’m taking a leap of faith in the young Athletic as I don’t really like the other options.  Despite his recent run, I’d hate to invest in Joe Kellywhile the ChiSox have been better in the second half and give Kris Medlen a tougher matchup than expected.

Game of the Day

Francisco Liriano vs. Taylor Jungmann – I want both guys to succeed as they both have the skill to produce solid numbers.

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.

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