Lose Yourself in M&M

Nick Pollack reviews every single starting pitcher's performances from Monday's games.

(Photo by Tim Spyers/Icon Sportswire)

I had a wonderful time tonight watching Miles Mikolas go 9.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks against the Royals, pitching as well as I’ve seen him all year. Is this what true love feels like? That lone walk from 8Miles is a sore thumb as it came with two outs in the ninth but I DON’T CARE, this is glorious. 14 whiffs overall here right after having a wonderful debate with the great Paul Sporer about if Mikolas will get over the 20% K rate hump and possibly hint at more and BAM! He does this, miraculously enough against the Royals – a weak team that strikes out fewer than any other lineup. 14 whiffs here, though I want to see more than 5/41 on his slider. I’m pumped to own Mikolas, I want to make sure y’all know he’s not Top 20 yet until we see this strikeout rate show up with some sort of consistency (and, you know, not having a string of clunkers), but this was fun.

Let’s see how every other SP did Monday:

Nick Pivetta – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. There was some fear that Pivetta wouldn’t be able to handle the Braves offense once again. I think you should keep your stupid comments in your pocket. But seriously, I’m looking at his potential schedule moving forward – @CHC, COL, STL, @WSH, WSH, BAL, @NYM – and I want him for all of it. The guy is legit and you should feel legit because you picked him up. Good job.

Jason Vargas – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. Hey, look at this! At least now we can start giving Vargas the Vargas Rule! Just kidding. Please don’t do that.

Walker Buehler – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. So he’s had some easy starts, with this one coming against Rocky Road and we all know how delicious that is, with his other five starts coming against the Marlins twice, Giants, Reds, and Padres. That’s actually a lot of easy starts, but he’s succeeded at what’s been given to him, with a 2.67 ERA (2.21 FIP), 54% GB rate, 30.4% K rate, and 8% walk rate entering this start. That’s wild. Sure, he’ll get an innings cap and have some stumbles but you best be happy to own him as he starts.

Mike Foltynewicz – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Even though I have my hesitations, a solid 35 CSW from Folty here worked against the Phils and I can’t complain. I wouldn’t have much of a gripe if someone wanted to slot him around Skaggs at 60 instead of 67, I am still very fearful of the floor given that I’m not sold that any element of his repertoire has taken a step forward to be labeled a catalyst for his 2018 success, but still, he’s now collected nine of 10 starts with 2 ER or fewer with a 10.53 K/9 and 2.72 ERA. Yes, the 4.42 BB/9 and 80% LOB rates are a little scary, but I won’t tell you to drop Folty in any league. Hopefully it sticks, I’m skeptical, but keep going.

Elieser Hernandez – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. I’m willing to put the Over/Under on Elieser starts remaining in 2018 at 4.5. I’m taking the under. Does that mean he’s– Yes, he’s a Cup of Schmo.

German Marquez – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Our Call Boy followed the Rockie Mountain Way and took advantage of a weak offense on the road. Streaming Record: 26-17. Don’t look too far into this one and I think you’re okay for his next two against the Reds and Dodgers in Coors. Yes, it’s Coors, but those offenses shouldn’t scare you. Don’t roster, just stream if it works for you.

Chase Anderson – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. This was a DLH from Chase, and he was ultimately limited to just 80 pitches…but he’s the kind of pitcher that can cruise through six even on a pitch count. Nothing really standing out to me here, but he gets the Mets and ChiSox next and that’s a lovely way to get acclimated to the bigs again.

Jose Berrios – 8.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks. That’s two straight fantastic outings from Berrios, specifically with curveballs that didn’t suck. I wanted to see a bit more with his changeup in this one, but his fastballs did a ton of work while his deuce was doing its thang as well. Great work, you don’t even need to be exactly like this next time, just don’t be terrible and I’ll be happy to put you back in the Top 30.

Andrew Cashner – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. You Cashed Out. I Cashed Out. And we’re all happy we don’t have to deal with a 2.20 WHIP as Andrew was Singled Out. It pains me to even look at this line. Cashner, you bring me pain even when you’re not on my team.

Gio Gonzalez – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. Gio does his thing, we’re happy and we move on. I feel like I need a term for him as I won’t seek him out in a deal, but I’ll happily award him employee of the month even without the elite numbers. Does that make sense? I hope that makes sense.

Blaine Hardy – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. Blaine brought the fire with just 2 ER allowed in 5 IP. Yes, for Blaine, that’s great. You can figure out the rest, this isn’t that hard…y.

Hector Santiago – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. He came off the island to give you a PQS with 7 Ks and hot damn that is kinda wonderful. It’s weird, I don’t pair Santiago and wonderful often unless it’s someone telling me “Hey, someone else in the league drafted Santiago.” No, it’s not the time for you to consider Hector.

Zack Greinke – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks. So let’s talk about that #10 on The List today. I’m going to be 100% honest, before this start even happened, I admitted that he should have been one in front of Carrasco. I really should have moved him back last week, didn’t, then didn’t feel the need to correct after his past week’s effort. Anyway, it’s a very small difference and it’s great to see the Ks alive here as he earned a Gallows Pole with 20 whiffs. Just don’t allow 3 HRs, okay?

Masahiro Tanaka – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. Alright, alright, Tanaka should be demoted out of the Top 30. His last two starts have been against tough opponents – Red Sox and Nationals while holding onto his excellent 13.8% whiff rate and 70% F-strike rates, but seeing him struggle like this against the Rangers…well I need to favor him less than over guys like Wood, Porcello, Mikolas, Fulmer, etc. I think he’s someone that may be a solid buy low given his arsenal adjustments, low walk rate, and elite whiff rates, but yeah, he should be closer to 35 than 20.

Ian Kennedy – 5.2 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. You own Kennedy for strikeouts at the cost of ratios, he gave you five, called you a dirty animal, and left. It hurt you, it hurts me to hear about it, and it’s a bad habit you have to quit.

Bartolo Colon – 5.1 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. The Groan Ranger had to face the Yanks and it didn’t go well. It wasn’t supposed to go well, but it still isn’t cool when it inevitably ends up that way.

Robbie Erlin – 4.0 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. Is it just me, or does his name sound like one long verb? What would “Robbierlin'” be? An absolute disaster on anyone’s fantasy team. Amen.

Today’s Streamer

Trevor Cahill vs. Seattle Mariners – I believe in his stuff + the Mariners are without Cano.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Dan Straily vs. New York  Mets – Ugh, I hate this but the Mets are bad and Straily has it in him to not suck.

Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer

Nick Tropeano vs. Toronto Blue Jays There aren’t many choices and this one fell into my lap. Trop can do it even if he didn’t against the Rays last time.

Game of the Day

J.A. Happ vs. Garrett Richards – I love them both. I want more Ks than a sea of passive aggressive texts.

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.

17 responses to “Lose Yourself in M&M”

  1. Lewis says:

    It looks like Chase Anderson had a higher velocity last night hitting 93. Do you think he’ll strike out more batters and have better results from now on ?

    • Nick Pollack says:

      I think it was a bit of a DLH, so I’m a little more optimistic moving forward. Around this time last year was when we saw Chase turn it on and it’s possible he follows the same mold in 2018.

  2. Mike says:


    Thoughts on Caleb Smith today @ Mets?

  3. AC says:

    Nick, you and Sporer have talked about what he calls the Glob – how close do you see the spread between Godley and Pivetta, and is there justification in a shallower mixed league (List position notwithstanding) for being ready to cut bait on Godley to grab Pivetta for that upcoming schedule you’ve highlighted above?

    • Nick Pollack says:

      I think there is justification in a shallow league as that glob as their difference is not so wide despite the large gap in #s.

      It does come down to the other options on the wire, though. Are there other arms available on the wire around the early 40s? If not, it may not be worthwhile to put all your chips on Pivetta.

      • AC says:

        Thanks, Nick. Fulmer, Castillo, Ross, and Heaney are all on the wire (and reaching a bit further, Caleb Smith, Flaherty & Reyes too). My other SPs besides Godley are Severino, Car-Mart, Paxton, Morton, McCullers, Manaea. Maybe Manaea’s a better drop, if he is more likely to regress to something closer to his SIERA (plus lower Ks) than Godley?

  4. WW says:

    Nice Mark from The Room quote drop Nick.

  5. NH says:

    14 team league, H2H , would you make this trade.
    Corbin and Hangier for Sale

  6. Taylor says:

    Do you like Straily over Gohara? Personally, I think Luiz will play well since he gets to go home after so I think it’ll make him play calmer but that’s like stepping into the 4th dimension of fantasy when you start trying to think what’s going on in their head.

  7. theKraken says:

    Its not too late to start hyping the Berrios as a TOR – I think it is inevitable. I am not sure what you aren’t buying about him, but there is clearly something you don’t like. Maybe the fact that he kind of tinkers… that’s what all young SP should be doing rather than just going to the well over and over again. His WHIP is .91 – the BABIP looks fishy, but I think it is at least somewhat earned by soft/hard contact – I think things could have gone better for him this year actually and I watch most of his starts. Few guys are lights out as often as he is – he does hit more speed bumps than his peers but I think some of those are because he is not afraid of getting beat and he is learning – which is a one step back, two forward kind of thing. Perhaps he is destined to be a mid 30s arm this year, but at some point he will emerge as a beautiful butterfly and I think you want a seat on that train.

    • Nick Pollack says:

      Sorry, I’m not sure what TOR stands for and I’m probably being stupid.

      The case with Berrios is that I want to see his changeup as a sturdy 3rd option before really believing in him as a Top 20 option. Then there’s the fact that his curveball flat out disappeared for four starts and did for a good amount of last year as well. I just can’t throw away that floor.

  8. ESB says:

    I didn’t see a breakdown on Tallions 6 run outing yesterday, thoughts on his performance?

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