Sean’s Shortcombings

The latest of the minor league arms to make their MLB debut was Braves’ prospect Sean Newcomb who went 6.1 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks in the first double-header...

The latest of the minor league arms to make their MLB debut was Braves’ prospect Sean Newcomb who went 6.1 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks in the first double-header game against the Mets. Before we get into the start itself, here’s the low-down: BB/9 rates of 4.50+ every step of the way outside of four games in Single-A from 2014 (including 5.15 BB/9 this year in Triple-A!), and Fastball that ranges from 91 up to 95 or so with a sweeping Zito-esque Curveball that opens the door to plenty of strikeouts. You may have noticed that I didn’t mention a third p itch and that’s because he doesn’t really have one. Yeah, he threw two Sliders and a Changeup, but that’s not what I want to see in over six innings of work. I can understand the high walk rates after watching this outing as he really needs a third pitch to throw for strikes instead of just going Fastball/Curveball all day – This isn’t Rich Hill (and even he is walking guys now!). I should note one of those walks was an IBB and Newcomb did a great job of command his heater in this outing. I just don’t have faith that he can do this every day against a better lineup and one that knows he’s going just FB/CB. Pair that with the uncertainty of his spot in the rotation and Newcomb just isn’t my favorite of the “intriguing upside arms” that are filling up the waiver wire. No harm in taking a flier, just not my favorite.

Let’s see how every other SP did yesterday:

Carlos Martinez – 9.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 11 Ks. Does CarMart deserve the Aces gonna Ace label? Martinez is a Rubber Ball as he bounces from 0 and 1 ER starts, but then shows up with 3+ ER games often (four of his last seven starts and six of his last ten). But those strikeouts are super legit – 37 in his last four games! – and the walks are more in check this year than we’ve seen in the past…If this wasn’t coming off a 4 ER outing, I think I would give it to him. Show it to me against the Orioles and you got it.

Mike Fiers – 7.1 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. Oh Fiers, you’re just screwing everything up. We want to see Paulino and Peacock in the rotation, not deal with you all year. :(

Luis Severino – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. Aces gonna ace. It’s crazy how good Severino is.

Gio Gonzalez – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks. Dios Gio! I’m conflicted with Gio as he has this kind of start, but still holds a 8.29 K/9 that was well under 8.00 before this start. And he still has a 4.26 BB/9 and 4.32 FIP and 4.27 xFIP and ugggggggh. Short term, I’m throwing him out there against the Mets, but long term I’m selling.

Robert Gsellman – 6.2 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Last three Gsellman starts: 1.42 ERA, 7.11 K/9, 2.84 BB/9, 22.8% soft contact, 54.5% grounders. That’s great! Against the Brewers, Pirates, and Braves while boasting a 4.24 SIERA, 3.98 xFIP, 4.08 FIP. That’s bad! I’m not sold that Gsellman has returned to what we were hoping he would be in the pre-season, and he gets a tough matchup now against the Nationals followed by the Dodgers. Makes it easy to resist adding him back to the squad.

Jeff Hoffman – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. Jeez, will this ever end? Three of his four starts have been of just 1 ER, and he’s walked jsut three batters with 34 Ks in his 27.0 innings – with a 6.75 IPS! This is crazy, but to be fair, his worst start was 3 ER in 5.1 innings against the Dodgers, with his last three starts coming against the Phils, Padres, and Cubs (21st in woBA!), all outside of Coors. Just sayin’. Now the question remains what kind of security Hoffman has in the rotation, but if he were to stick around, this Spice Girl would get the Giants and I’d start him regardless of Coors or not. Own Hoffman now and see what happens later. Oh, and most importantly…Streamer Record 32-20-10.

Marcus Stroman – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. That’s six starts of 2 ER or fewer in his last seven games, boasting a 2.34 ERA, 7.65 K/9, 2.13 BB/9 and 6.0+ IPS. Here is the innate problem with Stroman: this is his ceiling. It doesn’t get better here as we can’t expect a 8.50+ K/9 and you’re mostly banking on the innings and low WHIP/ERA for his value. There will be tough times being a Stroman owner – more good than bad – but in those starts there will be less to salvage than other great arms. It’s why I doubt I’ll have Stroman inside the Top 20, let alone Top 25, again this year.

Zack Godley – 6.2 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Good to see Godley back after that silly stint in the minors. Here’s to hoping this Spice Girl sticks in the rotation where he’d get the Phillies twice in a row next. Do the right thing, Arizona.

Steven Matz – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. I watched this start and even wrote a GIF Breakdown outlining all my thoughts about this outing: TL;DR Matz didn’t have the same polish we saw last year, isn’t throwing his Slider anymore and may need a few starts to get his feel right with his better lower half mechanics.

Sean Manaea – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Leave it to Manaea to have a rocky first inning and then settle in for six strong innings after. It’s what he does.

Ariel Miranda – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 5 BBs, 2 Ks. Oh lord. Five walks and still a near 1.00 WHIP + sub 3.00 ERA for the game? What sorcery is this?

Jeff Samardzija – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Ehhhh, the PQS will keep his ERA still way too high, but the WHIP and 6 Ks are everything we know he’s been doing. Kinda crazy how Braces is not giving us all the results we want but still maintains the peripherals.

David Holmberg – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Holmberg is not the answer you’re looking for.

Ricky Nolasco – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. Sure, whatever Nolasco.

Chris Sale – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. Sale, dude, let’s get back to those 0 and 1 ER games, okay?

Alex Wood – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. Welcome back buddy as this was a DLH situation. You can start him with confidence moving forward.

Jose Berrios – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 8 Ks. The Ks are here and that ERA is terrible, but I’ll admit, this line makes me a little worried. It’s a hint of what was the downfall of last season – bad command that leads to walks and hits. This isn’t enough for me to say “Sell sell sell!” but I’ll be watching closely next time.

Miguel Diaz – 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. Diaz got the chance to start to replace Jarred Cosart and as we always see from a reliever moving to a start, he was severely limited in pitches. There’s no reason to chase this.

Junior Guerra – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. It’s a VPQS from Guerra – 1.50 WHIP + 4.50 ERA – but this was the Diamondbacks and now he gets the Cardinals, Pirates, Braves next. I’d roll with Guerra on my roster through that.

Sonny Gray – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks. I’m seeing ten strikeouts, one walk, and 2 ER, and that’s all I care about here as Gray got Singled Out. It’s how it goes and what’s dumb is that now he has to face the Yankees. OH COME ON.

Martin Perez – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Don’t let this tempt you. Perez is so blegh and boring it hurts.

Matt Wisler – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 7 Ks. If you keep rostering Matt, you’re none the Wisler.

Ian Kennedy – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks.  So…when is Kennedy going to start being somewhat productive again? *Suit man whispers in my ear* Oh, never? Okay.

Eddie Butler – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Meh. Butler is useful for one reason: cheap chances at Wins, but the Cubs aren’t even winning these days! Blegh.

Justin Verlander – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. I mean, I doubt you were starting him against the Red Sox unless you were already content with punting ERA/WHIP as Verlander is in a state of Timeout as you’ve put him in the corner of your roster to reassess when he has time to think about what he’s done to your team. Seeing four walks isn’t helping things, though. Come on Jimmy V, you can do this.

Matt Andriese – 1.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. Andriese left with more groin discomfort and is getting an MRI. Jacob Faria is the expected arm to take his place and I would consider him for a pickup…but the upcoming Tigers start isn’t one I’d like to chase. I do think Faria can be a solid add in 12 teamers as what I saw during his debut was a pitcher that was more polished than your typical young arm making his debut. THen again, I do wonder if that was an anomaly and his 3.00+ BB/9 rates from the minors will return in a larger sample. We’ll see.

Nick Pivetta – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. On day I think Pivetta can be helpful to your squad. He’s a Young Gun to its fullest extent.

Erasmo Ramirez – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. That’s a pretty painful line, though the six Ks is a little surprising from Ramirez. Still, I don’t want him much and I’d imagine he’s more of a stop gap until Faria, de Leon, etc. get their proper time in the rotation in the second half.

Asher Wojciechowski – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. I refuse to type out your name until you give me something to write home about.

Chris Tillman – 1.1 IP, 9 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. You Can’t Spell Win With Tillman. Seriously though, stay away from this man.

Trevor Williams – 4.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. I’m not sure why you’d expect much different, honestly.

Dan Straily – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. This is why I wasn’t big on the Straily bandwagon. He will have starts like these even against the Pirates. He’ll also have those glorious outings, which makes him someone that should probably stay off the wire. Straily, we will always be at odds with each other.

Josh Tomlin – 2.2 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 0 Ks. Nothing getting absolutely nothing from a start. Nothing but pain.

Today’s Streamer

Dinelson Lamet vs. Kansas City Royals – But he looked terrible against the Diamondbacks! Yeah, and now he faces the Royals.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Luis Perdomo vs. Cincinnati Reds – Don’t love this start, but Kyle Freeland is owned in above 25% of leagues, making his start against the Pirates not applicable. If you’re in a H2H league, I’d not put myself in the hole early with Perdomo

Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer

Tyler Chatwood vs. Pittsburgh Pirates – I love Chatwood against the right opponents and this is just what we’re looking for.

Scott Feldman vs. San Diego Padres – I know, I know, Feldman Schmeldman, but it’s the Padres and the odds are in your favor.

Game of the Day

Aaron Nola vs. Adam Wainwright – It’s Nola day and we get the bonus of seeing if Waino can get his Cutter back.

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.

10 responses to “Sean’s Shortcombings”

  1. JakeSteens says:

    Fun fact- Severino and McCullers’ lines that got them their first AGA and happened within several days of each other:
    Luis: 7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 8K, 89 pitches
    Lance: 7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 8K, 91 pitches

    • Nick Pollack says:


      To be honest, I had thought I had already given the AGA to Severino…that’s how deserving this was.

  2. David Colasurdo says:

    Finally going to accept dropping Gausman, I had hope but I’m done. Clevinger, Biagini or L.Weaver would be 3 of fav. Choices left to grab.

  3. Grind_Crunch says:

    I was hoping for the Severino ace’s gonna ace, was not disappointed.

  4. lieonlion says:

    Small defense for CarMart:
    8 of last 9 starts have been QS (7 in a row before Cincy game last week). Quick add about that cincy game: He faced the minimum over 6 innings in a shutout 1 hitter. Did he give up 4er? yes, but worth noting they were all in the 7th. That’s important to differentiate from getting 4er over the first 6 IMO. That was after taking the dodgers for 8IP with only 1 ER and getting out of Coors with a QS going 7.1 IP the week before that. Besides that, only real blemish was Mil on Apr 20 where he still managed 7k’s over 5 IP. Most of his ER’s are coming in the 7th innings and on, and we were waiting to see if he could hold up past ‘just the QS min’… then gets a complete shutout.
    He is pitching deeper into games. WHIP is sub 1 over the last month. Looking at all other “Aces”, they have the same, if not arguably worse, blemishes on their season records also. If we were looking for that last cherry on top.. after a sub 3 ERA, sub 1 WHIP, and higher K/9 season so far… I don’t know what else to look for.

    • Nick Pollack says:

      Shouldn’t be a problem for him to get one more worthy start then :D

      I’m not saying you’re wrong here, I simply get the chance to trust my gut when I want to, and my gut says from it all that I’m pretty much there, just give me one more to make me happy about it.

      • lieonlion says:

        True… and full disclosure, I am in a keeper league and have had Fulmer, McCullers and Martinez since their beginnings and so might be a tad biased like they’re my kids. :)

  5. chrish011 says:

    What’s up Nick, just got offered Donaldson, would be giving them McCullers. Normally a no brainier, but here’s the thing, it’s a points league. I’ve read somewhere that an elite pitcher, and Mc has been gold with the K’s, will get more points per week than an elite hitter, who has to depend on put outs, runs scored, RBIs, walks, etc. Should I still accept the trade? I have Villar at 3B and he’s been plenty serviceable, averaging over 6 PPG. Trade just doesn’t make sense from my angle, and I don’t wanna make his team better lol. Thanks! Always respect your analyses.

    • My Seven Rizzos says:

      Nick is way more qualified than I, but I’d want Donaldson. I have both Donaldson and Villar in my 12 team H2H points league, and I just replaced Villar with Brandon Philips… Villar is horrible this year

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