Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup: Cole Irvindicated

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Saturday.

Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Saturday 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.

Cole Irvin (BAL) vs OAK (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 89 pitches.

It’s wonderful to see Cole Irvin return the line we expected when we saw him sit mid-90s on his heaters in March: 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 89 pitches. Of course he earned a Win against the Athletics with the mighty Orioles offense at his back, and now that he’s showcased the ceiling we idolized, can he hold it?

Naaaaah. It’s the Athletics and while his precision was better than what we had seen recently, it’s not paired with enough intrigue across the arsenal. His four-seamer came in at just 92 mph, and none of his secondaries overwhelmed with whiffs. Outs and strikes? Sure, up the wazoo, but once again, The Athletics. There’s also the question of his rotation spot moving forward, with both Kyle Bradish and John Means returning this week. I’d imagine Irvin, even with this outing, may not have done enough to demand a stay inside the rotation…except he doesn’t have any options left. So let’s move on from Irivin and get to everyone else.


Let’s see how every other SP did Saturday:


Charlie Morton (ATL) vs CLE (ND) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 91 pitches.

Morton finally gave you a strong line and…NO WIN?! Not cool Atlanta, not cool. I don’t think this was Morton figuring anything out, really, though he did earn five whiffs on slowballs. That’s cool, he’s still a massive Cherry Bomb.

Tanner Bibee (CLE) @ ATL (ND) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 91 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! Another start of Bibee executing the BSBmost impressively with his slider and changeup actually getting down consistently in this one. And against Atlanta! That’s some awesome stuff. Let me guess. Both hits were off the four-seamer? Ummm, yup. It’s still something I think would work better down, but who cares! This approach works and you can just forget anything I’ve been preaching here. Let’s hope Bibee can continue to keep that slider and changeup low.

George Kirby (SEA) vs ARI (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 12 Ks – 23 Whiffs, 39% CSW, 95 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. That’s a Golden Goal for Kirby as his four-seamer returned – get this – 18/48 whiffs. Just look at how he placed all of these four-seamers and he’ll continue to excel if he can keep this up. I’ll still protest that he needs to be slightly more out of the zone on these heaters to keep his Hits-Per-Nine down, but that’s just me wanting him to be the best in the bigs. Silly me.

Hunter Greene (CIN) @ TEX (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 98 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! He did this with just six whiffs, but his four-seamer was beautifully spotted upstairs that helped all of those balls in play find gloves instead of grass. Was there some BABIP luck? Uhhhh duh. But this was the BSB I’ve seen from Greene. Sure hope that sticks around.

Martín Pérez (PIT) @ SFG (ND) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 81 pitches.

Yep, that’s what you should expect from Pérez against the lowly Giants. And now you’re rewarded with Rockie RoadEnjoy.

Josh Winckowski (BOS) vs CHC (ND) – 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 52 pitches.

This ended at 17-0, Red Sox. They couldn’t let him get two more innings? Noooope. Try to get 40 Wincks thinking about that.

Ranger Suárez (PHI) @ SDP (W) – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 96 pitches.

Hot DANG, this is awesome. Suárez is pinpointing the down-and-armside corner with sinkers, curves, and changeups, while sticking up-and-gloveside with four-seamers + cutters and it’s absolutely beautiful. Don’t you dare get off this train early.

Jordan Hicks (SFG) vs PIT (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 88 pitches.

Whoaaaa nine strikeouts?! THE SPLITTER WORKED. We’ve seen Hicks kill it with his sinker in the zone, but didn’t have a secondary to step up and run along the fastball foundation. Until now. We’re talking 11/37 splitter whiffs for 70% strikes and that’s your ballgame. Boy do I hope that sticks.

Slade Cecconi (ARI) @ SEA (L) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 84 pitches.

Jeeeeez, that’s a gorgeous outing. Cecconi kept his slider down-and-away, four-seamers crowded the zone with ease, and changeups found the edges. That’ll play, though I do worry that his heater will get trounced against tougher offenses + boasting a sub 50% strike rate on sliders is bound to hurt in the long-run. I’m not chasing him against the Padres, but at least he’s displaying a higher ceiling than I anticipated.

Tyler Glasnow (LAD) @ TOR (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 9 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 95 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. Nearly 70% four-seamers is a bit surprising, but hey, whatever works.

Sonny Gray (STL) @ NYM (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 9 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 92 pitches.

Another great outing for Gray and we have no reason to believe this won’t continue, even if he doesn’t have his best command at the moment.

Carlos Rodón (NYY) @ MIL (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 93 pitches.

Awwwwww yeah. We finally saw his slider return whiffs like the old days with 44% CSW and a 28% SwStr rate, while his, um, 95 mph heater earned all the strikes to set up the breaker. What about the rest? Well… his changeup went 2/10 strikes, cutter went 3/7 strikes, and he went 50/50 on two curves. That’s not great. Look, prime Rodón was domination with just his heater and slider. Can’t we just be happy he’s helping our squads instead of actively making us wish we drafted someone else?

Brady Singer (KCR) @ DET (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 93 pitches.

We’ll take that all day. Oh look, five four-seamers and five changeups. He’s a new man, Nick! Uhhhh huh.

Mitchell Parker (WSN) @ MIA (ND) – 4.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 82 pitches.

Hmmmm. In the easy matchup, Parker still had decent BSB command with high heaters and low splitters + curveballs for strikes, but he was far more hittable than before. I’d be careful against the Rangers – this didn’t seem so far off from an ability standpoint from his previous outing.

Ronel Blanco (HOU) @ COL (W) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 21 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 102 pitches.

And y’all acted like you were in Major League and said Mexico City was “Too high”. The Rockies are a horrific offense and Blanco was cooking. We’re all good here, especially with Blanco crushing with cutters and changeups.

Casey Mize (DET) vs KCR (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 87 pitches.

Ehhh, alright. I wish we had a Win and a few more strikeouts, but this isn’t bad. I’m beginning to wonder if we’ll ever see his slider or splitter turn into the much-needed whiff pitch, but for now, we hold and hope he’s not just a TobyBut the Yankees are next! Meh, I’m doing it. The four-seamer is still great.

Ben Brown (CHC) @ BOS (L) – 3.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 61 pitches.

Womp womp. His pitch limitation is a real problem and I highly suggest holding back until we see him go a proper 80 and with something extra than his current four-seamer and curve.

Yusei Kikuchi (TOR) vs LAD (L) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 91 pitches.

The Dodgers are legit and Kikuchi wasn’t at his very best with his breakers. At least it seems like he’s improving with his four-seamer precision though. Get stoked for his next game against the Nationals.

Jonathan Cannon (CHW) vs TBR (ND) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 102 pitches.

Thus closes an intriguing and ultimately terrible two-step for Cannon. Let’s fire this into the sun.

Chris Paddack (MIN) @ LAA (W) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 95 pitches.

This Win feels super dirty. After his excellent outing against the White Sox, I expected something worse, but not this worse. It also came with drop in velo from 93.8 to 92.2 mph and that’s a little scary. I’d avoid Paddack as he hosts the Red Sox up next.

José Soriano (LAA) vs MIN (L) – 1.2 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 48 pitches.

We’ve dinged Soriano for his command questions and they showed up in full in this one. It’s unclear how much we’ll see it appear moving forward, though one more and he gets the dreaded Cherry Bomb tag. It’s up to you if you want to chance against the Guardians. Personally, I’d go for it.

Michael Lorenzen (TEX) vs CIN (L) – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 100 pitches.

Lorenzen spotted his pitches as well as we could hope and it still didn’t go well. He’s a desperate streamer who can go six frames, that’s all.

Dylan Cease (SDP) vs PHI (L) – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 91 pitches.

Womp womp. Here’s the perfect scenario for the cutter to appear, on a night where his four-seamer was battered a bit and he needed something else to help land in the zone. He did earn an out on one of the two he threw and yes, I’ll continue to be monitoring that offering. What about the new sweeper? 2/7 strikes, I’m not a major fan.

Edward Cabrera (MIA) vs WSN (L) – 4.1 IP, 5 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 78 pitches.

He threw over 60% strikes, but they were super hittable and that’s no fun. I’d prefer this side than the walk-a-thon version, though, as a grand slam ended his night early. What if he always allows a grand slam? And what if Jared Jones doesn’t strike out batters? Touché. I wouldn’t drop ECab and roll with him against Rockie Road.

Joe Ross (MIL) vs NYY (L) – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 99 pitches.

Blegh. He’s still a deep streaming option against the right matchup. Narrator: This was not the right matchup.

Cal Quantrill (COL) vs HOU (L) – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 14% CSW, 95 pitches.

CAL story, bro.

Aaron Civale (TBR) @ CHW (ND) – 4.1 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 73 pitches.

Bleggggh. Against the CRYSOX?! Ah, he located horribly. You still have to execute to take advantage of these poor lineups, after all. Everyone is a major leaguer for a reason.

Adrian Houser (NYM) vs STL (L) – 4.1 IP, 6 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 89 pitches.

He located his sinkers and sliders as best as he could. That’s his game and the balls will fall where they will.

JP Sears (OAK) @ BAL (L) – 6.1 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 98 pitches.

Womp womp. Three HRs, a whole lot of hard hit balls, and many mistakes here outline the Cherry Bomb he is. He clearly has the stuff to make it work, it’s just not consistent enough.

Game of the Day


Pablo López vs. Reid Detmers – I want to watch both looking like their best selves.

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.

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