Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup: EC Money

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Monday.

Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Monday game. I apologize for the jokes written in my delirium in advance. Have questions? Ask me during my office hours on Playback.tv weekday mornings from 10 am-12 pm ET. 

Edward Cabrera (MIA) vs SFG (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 42% CSW, 91 pitches.

Stop what you’re doing and check if Edward Cabrera is still on your wire. I can’t imagine he’s still there, but if he is, hot dang he needs to be on your squad after Monday’s brilliant 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 42% CSW, 91 pitches performance against the Giants. Nick, you said this was a Questionable Start! I sure did, given this was standard Still ILL material. AND HE LOOKED AMAZING.

The Cabrera we saw in the past had a changeup & curve, while struggling to find enough strikes with his heater to keep his walk rate down. This version? Well, still featured many erratic pitches and fell behind a fair number of batters, but the dude has a slider that he trusts and it is glorious. 73% strikes with a 40% SwStr rate across the 15 he threw, while his change + curve added another ten whiffs of their own, propelling his Golden Goal for the night. Heaters actually earned 70%+ strikes at 97 mph, and his changeup looked as disgusting as I’ve ever seen it (though, it needs to find the zone a little more often).

Watching this one in full, I don’t believe all of his walk issues are put to bed. This could have been a three-walk night easily, and yet, I was blown away. He looked like a legit stud, throwing ridiculous offerings one after another like a Top 30 starter. It could be just one night. It could also be a young arm who has finally figured out how to wield his arsenal well enough to become the fantasy darling we’ve wanted him to be for years. I can’t wait to watch his next one – let’s hope he returns another 68% strike rate performance.


Let’s see how every other SP did Monday:


Seth Lugo (KCR) @ CHW (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 99 pitches.

Isn’t it lovely when the logical thing works out exactly as it should? All is right in the world.

Zach Eflin (TBR) vs LAA (ND) – 6.1 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 76 pitches.

Hey Zach, thanks. We needed this one. We really did. Next order of business – can you find your cutter? Seriously, you need it. We all need it.

Sonny Gray (STL) @ OAK (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 72 pitches.

Gray didn’t even pitch that well here. Blame it on the Athletics + it’s good to have Sonny back on our squads.

Kutter Crawford (BOS) vs CLE (ND) – 5.2 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 92 pitches.

That’s one beautiful outing for Crawford, even with a Phillythough just six whiffs and only a 21% CSW should give you some pause. Talking to Eric Samulski on our On The Corner Podcast tonight, we discussed how Kutter doesn’t have a true “leader” in his arsenal. That is, what is the single pitch he uses when he’s in a jam? Honestly, I don’t know which it is between his four-seamer, sweeper, and kutter, and I’m not sure he does either. It makes me a little hesitant to trust Crawford to fulfill our wishes of being a consistent, dominant arm who goes six innings constantly. I know, this sounds strange and like I’m just making things up, but watching Crawford, it feels like he’s figuring it out on the fly with a solid array of tools, but doesn’t have that way of dominating each time. I’m not sure I love that.

Michael Lorenzen (TEX) @ DET (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 5 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 79 pitches.

Lorenzen is taking over for the hurt Cody Bradford and sure, that ERA is great with a Win you should earn against the Tigers, but did you have to walk five batters? Really? Please don’t consider a pick up ahead of a date with Atlanta. That sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.

Xzavion Curry (CLE) @ BOS (ND) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 73 pitches.

Hey, that’s far better than I expected from Curry. So we’re adding him for his start against the Athletics? Ummmm, probably not? Is he allowed to go 80 pitches? Will he still go 33% CSW on his 91/92 mph heater? Can he survive with just two pitches and an inconsistent curve/change? Are these rhetorical. Yes?

Aaron Nola (PHI) vs COL (ND) – 7.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 99 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. His velocity shot back up to 92 mph while the curveball was bananas. We’re talking 12/34 whiffs with a 47% CSW + he didn’t hang nearly as many over the plate as he did in previous outings. And guess what? Nearly all of his four-seamers were located upstairs. HE’S LEGIT DOING IT.

Reese Olson (DET) vs TEX (L) – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 95 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! That’s a Gallows Pole against a stron–wait. No Seager? Langford? Oh. Welp, who cares, Olson killed it with his changeup (10/28 whiffs! That thing was disgusting) + his slider finally woke up for nearly 75% strikes and five whiffs of its own. This was a much needed redemption start and you should feel great about the Twins later this week.

Chris Bassitt (TOR) vs NYY (W) – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 97 pitches.

I can’t get enough of how consistent Bassitt’s sinker is, and y’all really need to just let Chris do his thing without a second thought. Just start the man and we’ll talk in October.

Cal Quantrill (COL) @ PHI (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 90 pitches.

COL story, Bro. Leave it to the UnQuantrillfiable to give us a HAISTBMBWT?! against the Phils and live to tell the tale.

Ben Brown (CHC) @ ARI (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 84 pitches.

Another strong outing for Ben, who still struggles heavily to earn whiffs on his four-seamer at just 3/61 here, but managed to sneak in seventeen called strikes with the pitch for a 33% CSW. Unreal. It makes sense for the Cubs to demote Brown and manipulate his service time after this one with Jameson Taillon returning to the rotation, though there’s a chance the Cubs elect to strip Kyle Hendricks of his role given his obvious inability to carve innings. That fastball has been too dull for years. At any rate, I’m not a massive fan of chasing Benny B. over here, but if he does make his next start, there are worse streams than against the Marlins.

Patrick Sandoval (LAA) @ TBR (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 93 pitches.

Ayyyy, the Irish Panda came through! He actually had both his changeup and slider working for a start, slotting them down and on opposite sides of the plate effectively. Throw in some foul balls off his four-seamer that would have been hits in previous games and BLAMO! There’s your ballgame. This isn’t a turned corner, of course.

Merrill Kelly (ARI) vs CHC (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 95 pitches.

Yeah, we’ll take that all day. Thanks Kelly, you’ve been a lovely rock once again. Don’t talk to me like your 3rd grade pet. THAT ROCK WAS MORE THAN A PET.

Darius Vines (ATL) @ HOU (ND) – 4.2 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 80 pitches.

Just one run against the Astros? You could say that this start was D. Vine(s)…I’m sorry, you need more than that. It was cutter/change leading the way as the susceptible heater darted around the edges, hoping to avoid punishment. I don’t see a legit starter for Atlanta here and I have to think he gets replaced before too long.

George Kirby (SEA) vs CIN (W) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 89 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. Say it with me y’all: THANK KOUFAX. He elevated his four-seamer incredibly well (and back at 96+ mph!)and it returned 8/43 whiffs. My. MAN.

Adrian Houser (NYM) vs PIT (ND) – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 5 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 95 pitches.

Hey look, Houser chucked enough fastballs until it eventually worked…except it was actually sliders and changeups that got him through this one. They saved this start, combining for 71% strikes and nearly 40% CSW. They won’t always save you, Houser…

Mitchell Parker (WSN) @ LAD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 81 pitches.

Parker made his MLB debut, sporting a four-seamer with strong iVB at 91-94 mph from the left side and paired it with a big hook that landed for 44% CSW. There isn’t much else, sadly, and with the horrible team context surrounding the Nationals, I’d very much prefer to avoid Parker if he gets another shot in the rotation. There isn’t enough here unless he’s able to squeeze out more than 1/44 whiffs on the heater (That sole whiff? His fourth pitch of the game to strikeout Betts on his hardest pitch of the game at the top of the zone). But I just changed my team name to Parker Bros. What was it before? Injured Hall Monitors. Ho’ boy. We’ll figure it out for you.

Nick Nastrini (CHW) vs KCR (L) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 74 pitches.

It was Nastrini’s MLB debut (hey, TWINSIES) (No, this was the Royals) (First, stop. Second, why are we talking inside parentheses?) and it was fine. The changeup and slider each had some moments, and his fastball did decent work around the zone. You don’t sound very excited. Because it wasn’t all that special. I don’t see a legit arm to chase, though I see a pitcher who can do well on a given night, hey, like this one! Toss in the Chicago offense that will do little to help + the Shag Rug and I’d rather sit this out.

Cole Irvin (BAL) vs MIN (ND) – 4.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 82 pitches.

It’s the Wrong Cole! Soooo, three whiffs? Yeah, that’s not gonna cut it, Irvin. Pu, Pu, Pu.

Spencer Arrighetti (HOU) vs ATL (L) – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 87 pitches.

That’s a much better performance for the Pasta Pirate, who sported a strong heater upstairs that leans into its great HAVAA with Arrighetti’s solid extension. We saw some great cutters in the mix as well + a strike-heavy curve and decent sweeper, showcasing a pitcher who could be pickup later in the year when Arrighetti could get a stable rotation spot – he’s getting displaced by Verlander later this week. Not bad, Spencer.

Kyle Harrison (SFG) @ MIA (W) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 85 pitches.

It’s the first VPQS of the year (wait, that can’t be true, can it?!) and it’s hard not to be disappointed. For a date with the Marlins, it’s a bit frustrating to see Harrison return just 3/58 whiffs on his four-seamer, even if he’s throwing more strikes with them than we expected. Meanwhile, I’m loving the emphasis of changeups over curveballs (and the outs they induced, of course), though without that heater doing its work, the changeup is a helper, not a game changer. I’m taking a step back here on Harrison until that four-seamer bullies batters properly.

Joe Musgrove (SDP) @ MIL (W) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 94 pitches.

I love it when a pitcher stumbles early for 3 ER, then recovers enough to get through six to help make up for it. It’s our first VVVPQS of the year (wait, you too?!) as we all collectively wonder if Musgrove has lost a massive step. As of now, yeah he has. Curves and sliders are far from the elite pitches they once were, as they landed so comfortably in the zone or well out of it and it’s hard not to look at it and laugh. Yes, I believe Musgrove does get locked in as the season progresses (he always does), though the redemption arc may be a bit lacking. I get the sense he belongs closer to #40 on The List next week, but at least we have one more start against the Jays before I have to make that decision.

Martín Pérez (PIT) @ NYM (ND) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 86 pitches.

Y’all know the Vargas Ruleright? It’s there in the tooltip, yeah. So that means–No we’re not dropping him now. But that’s the rule and this was a HAISTBMBWT?! with terrible ratios! His cutter and sinker were terrible! HE GETS THE RED SOX NEXT. Nope, don’t care. Please don’t be that random italics voice. Be. Better.

Ross Stripling (OAK) vs STL (L) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 101 pitches.

That’s a Phillywhich is far better than I expected from Stripling. It doesn’t mean I’d trust him in any fashion, but at least…yay? But everything was bad. If you started Strip, the only gain was four strikeouts. Okay, fair. Thanks for meeting expectations, I guess…?

Luis Gil (NYY) @ TOR (L) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 7 BBs, 6 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 99 pitches.

Jeeeeez, seven walks?! Nick, you have to let go of Gil. I CAN’T DANGIT. The ceiling is too dang high. And look, his fastball was clumped together (not a shotgun blast!), but it was just too high and glove-side. HE’S ALMOST THERE. Uh huh. How many poor WHIP games is it gonna take to get you to realize he’s a Cherry Bomb. No. No. NOOOOO. On the real, I watched Gil in the spring and saw a far different man, capable of earning strikes with all three of his pitches. I know that man is in there and I’d give it one more shot against the Rays. If he can’t come through there, then fine, we reconsider.

Louie Varland (MIN) @ BAL (L) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 11 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 94 pitches.

For such a flat four-seamer, Varland really does it a disservice by spotting it down. The fact he’s getting decent iVB on it with above-average extension and suddenly now at 96/97 mph (not 95!) is all kinds of frustrating – just chat with Joe and Ober and figure out how to get the dang thing elevated. YOU’RE SO CLOSE. With the Tigers up next, I just want him to get one more chance to showcase what’s possible. Click those heels three times, Judy Varland. Take us home.

Frankie Montas (CIN) @ SEA (L) – 2.0 IP, 5 ER, 3 Hits, 5 BBs, 1 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 14% CSW, 66 pitches.

Womp womp. Montas is a Toby and plays in Cincy. It’s not a great combo and if he doesn’t come through when on the road, it sure feels like the chances of production are slim. What about his skills? You mean the heaters that were 1-2 ticks down to just 92 mph? Oh no. Yuuuuup.

Tyler Glasnow (LAD) vs WSN (ND) – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 94 pitches.

Aces gonna see that I put them at #5 on The List and laugh as he falls on his face against the Nationals. Baseball is a cruel, cruel game. Whatareyagonnado.

Joe Ross (MIL) vs SDP (L) – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 80 pitches.

You know, he was actually looking solid through four before it all came apart in the sixth. That slider still has some fun in it and he makes for a desperate streaming option in the future. Just saying.


Game of the Day


Jared Jones vs. New York Mets – I just want to hear Keith’s deep Mmmmmmm when Jones pitches.

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

Have Questions? – Join my morning Playback.tv livestream! I answer all questions there for free: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm ET Monday through Friday.

Featured image 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.

7 responses to “Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup: EC Money”

  1. David says:

    Where would you rank Bradish once he returns?

    Who do you prefer Cabrera or Bradish?

  2. Stephen Lidbetter says:

    Apparently Glasnow was ill.

  3. Swarles says:

    According to The List, he’s in the 10-20 range.

  4. Swarles says:

    According to The List, he’s in the 10-20 range.

  5. Jim says:

    If Luis Gil couldn’t get past the Jays, why would one think he could fare better against the Rays??
    He’s a streamer/watchlist at best. But not a hold.
    Nick has fallen in love with another high ceiling/K-upside guy that fails to reach his potential. It happens every year.

  6. David says:

    Ya but if you go into Nick’s preseason or late last season list for top pitchers, he doesn’t sound too top 10-20 about him. I have a feeling this one where Nick ends up having him as 30-40 when he’s back. That’s why I’m asking. We can all use a top 10-20 pitcher on our team. Wanted Nick’s feel.

  7. Swarles says:

    Hop in his stream and ask him! He’s great about answering viewer questions live.

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