Sonny and Flair

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Tuesday.

Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Tuesday game. I apologize for the jokes written in my delirium in advance. Have questions? Ask me during my office hours on Twitch weekday mornings from 9 am-11 am ET.  

Sonny Gray (MIN) vs DET (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 95 pitches.

Today was a good day. Not just because the second episode of The Nick & Alex Baseball Show was fantastic, nay, because many pitchers did exactly what we wanted them to, including Sonny Graywho went a glorious 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 95 pitches against the Tigers.

After a start of success coming via his heaters, Gray dominated with breakers like the old days. His curveball went a whopping 18/22 strikes and 50% CSW, while the slider did some work as well. And hey, it’s not like the fastballs were bad, either, hugging the edges constantly with some solid elevation at times.

We needed this from Gray. I don’t envision managers feeling all too great about how 2022 has played out so far for Sonny and this outing sure makes us feel good about the summer ahead, especially with the Royals up next. Let it ride, let it ride.


Let’s see how every other SP did Tuesday:


Kevin Gausman (TOR) @ STL (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 23 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 105 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. The splitter is still crazy amaing (Gallows Pole!) and his four-seamer returned 76% strikes as it always does. He’s insanely good.

Shane McClanahan (TB) vs MIA (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 96 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. He’s so good it hurts now. HURTS. The changeup is one of the better ones around, the breakers are solid, and the 97 mph heater earns strikes galore as he, once again, goes six frames. What more do you want? A Shane McClanaFan shirt. Well you can get one right here.

Roansy Contreras (PIT) vs COL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 84 pitches.

Okay so this wasn’t bad at all. The question is now — is it good enough for us to start him against the Dodgers? I’m not sure it was. He pumped 97 mph heaters as expected and earned 42% CSW on his slider, though I’m not sure he’s as polished as you want him to be to comfortably start him against Los Angeles. However, he would get the Sneks after that so…maybe that’s worth a stash until next weekend? That’s 10 days away, completely your call. I’ll say this: I don’t believe Roansy to be an overwhelming “I won my league because I picked up Roansy” kind of arm given the questionable command. I could be wrong, but that’s how I see it right now.

Noah Syndergaard (LAA) vs TEX (W) – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 93 pitches.

AHA! Syndergaard was haunted by his two-out outing last time out (say “out” one more time) and redeemed himself against the Rangers for a powerful eight-inning performance. Daniel Day Lewis powerful. I can’t say I buy his sinker and four-seamer being the catalyst for his success at their lower 94 mph velocity, though, and it may be a great time to sell as he faces the Yankees next. “He redeemed himself!” you could tell them, knowing this isn’t meant to last.

Corbin Burnes (MIL) @ SD (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 99 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. Slider + curveball returned 48% CSW because lol.

Kyle Freeland (COL) @ PIT (ND) – 4.1 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 84 pitches.

Is this a streaming victory? With six strikeouts, I think so. I wish he could have at least finished the fifth to give him a shot at the Win, but all of those ratios and strikeouts work for me. Next up are the Nationals on the road and it could be more of the same (hopeully for a little longer, too). Not a bad stream.

Jordan Montgomery (NYY) vs BAL (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 88 pitches.

Hey that’s a solid outing from The Bear as his sinker returned a 36% CSW. Phew. The curve and changeup weren’t so overwhelming, though, and it made for a good (not great) performance. He’s boring, I know, but I think it’s worthwhile keeping him in your lineups.

Walker Buehler (LAD) @ WSH (W) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 92 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. It’s the Ace of Very Good giving you another start of fine, I guess, this time making me a bit more concerned as he went 0/27 whiffs on his four-seamer. Is that bad? Yes, in fact, I had the same number of whiffs on my four-seamer earlier today. I threw the ball into my pillow and no one swung and missed. I have to stop treating Buehler like this is going to change any time soon (I was hoping last start was a trend upward), which means he’s going to fall a bit on Monday. He’s still Top 15 and all, just not #5. That doesn’t seem right when his fastball hasn’t recovered by now.

Max Fried (ATL) vs PHI (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 99 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. He’s not going to blow you away, but you’re gonna look back on the season and see 180+ strikeouts with some mighty fine ratios. Enjoy it.

Logan Webb (SF) vs NYM (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 92 pitches.

Sure, that works. You want a little more than five frames, but whatever, Webb had a decent (not stellar) slider and overwhelmed the zone with sinkers. This works. If that slider becomes legit again, there’s a path toward Top 15 SP. I’m not holding my breath.

Marcus Stroman (CHC) @ CIN (W) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 97 pitches.

We expected this work out, but eight strikeouts too?! Well ain’t that wonderful. You can thank his slider + cutter returning nine whiffs, something we haven’t seen a whole lot of this year. Let’s hope it sticks against the Brewers on Monday.

Kyle Gibson (PHI) @ ATL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 106 pitches.

Atlanta is poor against right-handers and Gibson whipped out the slider and cutter to make it decently worthwhile. It makes for a tough call against the Mets next and it’s on you to spin that wheel or not. You never know with Gibson.

Beau Brieske (DET) @ MIN (L) – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 90 pitches.

I know Beau is the black sheep of the staff and I’m rooting for him to establish himself. Come on Beau, burn ’em. Sadly, I don’t think there’s enough here for ascension.

Framber Valdez (HOU) vs CLE (W) – 7.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 106 pitches.

I raised Valdez a decent amount on The List this week given his stability in your rotation and going seven frames with a 1.00 WHIP and a Win does exactly that. He’s not going to blow you away, but you’ll be happy you have him through the year. Just get that curveball back — a 19% CSW ain’t it.

Nick Pivetta (BOS) @ CWS (W) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 88 pitches.

Wow, what a normal and pedestrian PQS from Pivetta. I never thought I’d be bored seeing him toss 10/31 called strikes on curveballs, but here we are. His heater wasn’t nearly as good as it fell too far down into the heart of the plate too often, which really is a shame as the aftormentioned hook did everything he wanted it to. He survived, though, and he could do so again on Sunday against the Orioles. That’s fine with me.

Blake Snell (SD) vs MIL (L) – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 104 pitches.

Okay! This is another step in the right direction, with a bit of a Dusty Donut as the WHIP and strikeouts are what you want. His heater did a fantastic job finding strikes, while the slider earned whiffs. Sure, he labored a bit more than ideal and allowed an extra run than you would’ve wanted, but this is the Snell you were hoping for when you drafted him with just seven changeups. Sign me up.

Jonathan Heasley (KC) @ ARI (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 6 BBs, 5 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 83 pitches.

Oh my, he said, pointing at Jonathan believing he resembled Bruce. He’s Lee! Why would I shout such a thing? Because he’s knocked out all your ratios.

Pablo López (MIA) @ TB (L) – 7.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks – 21 Whiffs, 38% CSW, 86 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. The first pitch of his night resulted in an “inside the park HR”, which should have been caught by many. The rest of the night was PabLó allowing a two run blast and mostly locking it down with his ridiuclous changeup and well located four-seamers, en route to a King ColeThe dude is still fantastic and I’m proud of him for going the extra mile after the early ERA hit.

Bruce Zimmermann (BAL) @ NYY (ND) – 6.1 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 85 pitches.

The changeup and slider are showing life, but I’m not sure if it’s quite enough to get him over the hump just yet. Maybe when he faces the Guardians in 10 days…but I’d avoid him against the Sawx next.

George Kirby (SEA) vs OAK (ND) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 90 pitches.

He allowed his final two runs in the fifth, ruining what was a pretty dang good night. He has an excellent heater that will keep the strikeouts flowing, though he’ll run into trouble where the secondaries need to do more. Keep rostering him, I think you’ll be happy you did — h*ck, you salvaged nine strikeouts from this blegh outing.

Jordan Hicks (STL) vs TOR (L) – 3.0 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 5 BBs, 3 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 78 pitches.

Are you still holding out for the Hicks experiement to work? Why? Y? That’s Yordan. This is Jordan. No, like what is your reasoning for rostering Hicks. Ohhhhh. He throws hard. And? Isn’t that good? Is 2/48 whiffs on said 98.4 mph fastball good? ….no? No. No it isn’t.

Dane Dunning (TEX) @ LAA (L) – 6.1 IP, 5 ER, 11 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 98 pitches.

Womp womp. It’s a taste of a Dusty Donut with eight strikeouts surprising all of us (thanks 52% CSW slider!) but his changeup and sinker got walloped as he didn’t have the command we’ve seen in previous starts. There’s a chance he brings out his best self against the Athletics next, though, so if you need a weekend stream, you could absolutely do worse than that coin flip.

James Kaprielian (OAK) @ SEA (ND) – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 74 pitches.

Welp, he’s a Toby and the Mariners are a solid squad. The slider abandoned him a bit here, as he threw it for strikes, but not quality ones. He’ll get the Rangers over the weekend and that could be better (I remember last year’s curse against Texas, though) and I’d consider it only for those chasing a QS.

Zac Gallen (ARI) vs KC (ND) – 5.1 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 96 pitches.

Oh no. Imagine a man running away from a zombie attack. You know he can’t keep this up forever, but if he can simply find a car that works, he can cruise away into the distance and nestle into a world of safety. Now imagine Gallen without his changeup but holding a sub 2.00 ERA was a carless man in a post-apocolyptic world. We knew he couldn’t run forever, but I was hoping the changeup and/or slider (i.e. the car) would be found soon. They say he’s still searching to this day. Or, you know, not able to anymore. I have faith Gallen will get there in due time but without that safety net, it opens the door for starts like these. I’m sorry Gallen Gals, I wish it weren’t the case.

Zach Plesac (CLE) @ HOU (L) – 4.2 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 90 pitches.

Yikes. At least Plesac is getting whiffs with his slider again. I wonder if he can have that and his changeup against the Tigers next time. Something to monitor. What about this one? I mean, it was the Astros, who cares, you didn’t start him.

Josiah Gray (WSH) vs LAD (L) – 3.0 IP, 7 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 80 pitches.

Womp womp. This was a clear sit and there’s not much more to it. He gets Rockie Road next and that’s not a bad idea with his strikeout potential.

Dylan Cease (CWS) vs BOS (L) – 3.0 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 71 pitches.

Jeeeeeeez. I know the Red Sox are hot right now, but Cease really got destroyed in this one. The start against the Yankees was Cease getting unlucky, this one is why he’s named the premium Cherry Bomb along with Darvish. His slider was fine, but his fastball and curve found the heart of the plate constantly and got crushed. The good news is when these starts happen, they usually don’t linger. You just gotta keep pressing on and expect greatness to return against the Cubs.

Tyler Mahle (CIN) vs CHC (L) – 4.0 IP, 8 ER, 9 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 103 pitches.

Oh no. Oh nonononono. Sigh. His four-seamer wasn’t as bad as the line looks, but nothing supported it and, alright, ALRIGHT, he was pitching at home. He’s going to host the Giants and Nationals next and it seems far too risky, which means…yeah. You can drop him if you haven’t yet. This one hurts a lot — I know some of you either dropped him a while ago or picked him up and just got burned. Such is the name of the game. Let’s move on.

Chris Bassitt (NYM) @ SF (ND) – 4.1 IP, 8 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 92 pitches.

Jeeeeeeeez. That AGA label has gotta go after two disaster outings. I apologize for the curse, I know I’ve done all of us wrong. The Giants took advantage of some poorly located pitches, while Bassitt struggled to dominate the zone like we normally see. It’s not time to panic, it’s time to take a deep breath and trust the process. He’ll rebound against the Nationals. He’ll rebound against the Nationals…


Game of the Day 

Aaron Ashby vs. Yu Darvish – Ashby is getting a true chance in the rotation + Darvish is on the other side. Must watch TV.

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

Have Questions? – Join my morning Twitch livestream! I answer all questions there for free: 9:00 am – 11:00 am ET Monday through Friday.

Photo by Bailey Hillesheim/Icon Sportswire | Adapted 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.

2 responses to “Sonny and Flair”

  1. Frankie says:

    Roansy Contreras gets SD this weekend on the road. Slightly better matchup than LAD but still no way I am risking my weekly matchup on a Sunday hold of Contreras. He lines up to get ARI next week if he stays up.

  2. D.O. says:

    Beau Brieske? He any relation to Bill Brasky?

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