Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup – Lazy Grayson Day

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 Twitch weekday mornings from 10 am-12 pm ET.

Grayson Rodriguez (BAL) vs LAD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 91 pitches.

Don’t let the fun headline, nor the final stat line fool you. Grayson Rodriguez pitched well in his return to the big leagues via 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 91 pitches. We saw a much more electric arm than we did before and the potential is ready to soar in due time.

He was pumping 101 mph heaters in the first frame that came back down to 96-98 mph in subsequent frames, while he flashed some nice breakers and an occasional magnificent changeup. All of that said, there’s still polish left to be had. His four-seamer looks a bit more hittable than I’d like to see – just 4/45 whiffs despite the velocity can be attributed a touch to the Dodgers, but also possibly to the pitch itself – and the changeup is better at getting low, but certainly isn’t the precise pitch we want it to be.

Meanwhile, the breakers returned a sub 50% strike rate between them, with Grayson mostly going fastball/change here. That’s not great, either.

Up next are the Rays and I suggest benching him there, too. Wait for a better matchup than this one, even if it is an improvement from his April self. Grayson has the tools to be a legit fantasy arm when he’s able to battle the batter more than himself, allowing him to sequence properly each time they step in the box. That might not happen until next season, but until then, he’s still worth the stash through the next poor matchup. Hopefully he can have that growth this year inside the bigs.


Let’s see how every other SP did Monday:


Jordan Lyles (KC) vs DET (ND) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 83 pitches.

You don’t normally see a Gold Star when facing the Tigers, but Lyles deserves that. He also deserves a second Win and this is just getting silly now. Anyway, the harder curve went just 14% CSW (maybe don’t throw it hard?) and this was a clear Birthday Party.

Matt Manning (DET) @ KC (ND) – 5.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 81 pitches.

Oh snap, Manning is doing the whole Zac Gallen approach of low four-seamers to set up his secondaries. Here, it was slider and curve, each returning a CSW comfortably above 30%, and this could work. I’m not sure it actually does – even the Royals were able to put enough in play to prevent the punchouts – but it’s something I can at least understand as a proper approach moving forward. It’s not enough to start him against SDP + LAA, though.

Xzavion Curry (CLE) @ PIT (ND) – 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 39 pitches.

Imagine gathering the children in front of a fire to hear one of grandpa’s old stories, then after two minutes, he gets up as some other random person sits down to tell you an even shorter story. THIS IS WHY I HATE BULLPEN GAMES.

Brennan Bernardino (BOS) @ OAK (ND) – 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 20 pitches.

Ummm Nick Pivetta followed and absolutely dominated the Athletics. We’re talking 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 2 BBs, 13 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 38% CSW, 87 pitchesWhoa. Yeah, that’s no-hit ball of destruction and while I want to say Blame it on the Athletics, I can’t ignore Pivetta actually commanding his sliders for a change. Is it enough to chase him against the Mets over the weekend? Honestly, with the way the Mets are going, it might be. This was kinda legit. You say that often about Pivetta and he can’t be trusted. Wow. What. You’re right, I’m just shocked you said something smart after living on my couch for three months. Oh. Thanks. Now get off my couch. NEVER.

Luis Severino (NYY) @ LAA (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 98 pitches.

Hmmmmm. It’s better, but we’re still not there as he’s too hittable. Love seeing the cutter get some action, though, pairing with the slider to tally nine whiffs between them. But yeah, still not there yet. But it’s the Royals next. Okay that’s legit tempting…nope. Top of Questionable Start there. I have a bad feeling it gets worse before it gets better.

Logan Webb (SF) @ CIN (ND) – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 86 pitches.

Webb could have honestly gone the distance if it weren’t for the rain and I’ll talk to my people to make sure that doesn’t happen again. The man is in a wonderful groove.

Dane Dunning (TEX) vs TB (ND) – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 96 pitches.

That’s far better than I expected against the Rays from Dunning, and I recognize he’s surprising me here and there. That said, he played the BABIP game and won, without a legit foundation for you to believe in for your fantasy teams. There are so many other wheels to spin that are more worth your time, even if this one happens to work out.

Brandon Williamson (CIN) vs SF (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 98 pitches.

Is it time for us to jump on the Williamson train? Nah. It’s all a bit too boring without a single elite offering. Sure, he has a chance to get enough outs in play to go six again. And he also has a (high) chance of being a Double Bubble next week. It’s not a fun feeling questioning the gum you chose to chew without a place to get rid of it. I’m sorry jaw, I know you’re tired and I know this tastes like absolutely nothing, but we have to live with our, well, my choices.

Shane McClanahan (TB) @ TEX (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 35% CSW, 69 pitches.

Aces gonna ace, even when coming off the IL and facing a strong offense. His changeup returned a 59% CSW tonight and he was able to give you six strikeouts despite going six frames in under 70 pitches. Swoon.

Griffin Canning (LAA) vs NYY (ND) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 12 Ks – 20 Whiffs, 38% CSW, 120 pitches.

That’s a Golden Goal for Canning as he’s doing a wonderful thing. Four-seamers are being used mostly as chase pitches at the edges, leaving the curve and slider to settle inside the zone for a ton of strikes. By the way, I’m floored that the Angels let this kid throw 120 pitches. You just don’t see that these days and pretty cool of Canning to be able to pull it off while holding a 38% CSW. He should get the Tigers next week and that’s an obvious start.

Logan Gilbert (SEA) vs MIN (W) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 94 pitches.

As is often the case, Gilbert’s new skill of breakers for solid CSW marks disappeared before the old skill – four-seamer and splitter dominance – returned. Gilbert allowed many hits on breakers inside the zone, while the heater returned just two whiffs on the night and two on the splitter. That can’t be the Gilbert we see the rest of the year, right? He has to be better than this.

Jesús Luzardo (MIA) @ STL (ND) – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 92 pitches.

Bleeeegh. The Cardinals made Luzardo work and it’s all kinds of annoying. Welp, we start him later this week and try our best to forget this one. Nothing here sets off red flags.

Miles Mikolas (STL) vs MIA (W) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 18% CSW, 92 pitches.

I’m kinda shocked the Cards let him go 92 pitches after his rain-shortened start on Friday, but he did everything he could to give you that PQS with just three strikeouts. What. A. Guy. This feels sarcastic. I WONDER WHY. Okay, I get it, thanks.

Emmet Sheehan (LAD) @ BAL (W) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 94 pitches.

Blegh. He was a bit wild across the board, even if he did elevate with intent on the heaters. He’s better than this when the change and slider do more than what we saw here, though just 1/59 four-seamer whiffs should tell you a proper story about the lack of electricity in this arm. Even at its mid-90s heat, its lateral movement will make him more of a Toby than a potential ace. And that’s alright, just command your secondaries better, thanks.

MacKenzie Gore (WSH) @ CHC (W) – 6.1 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 106 pitches.

It really is just best for you to ignore Gore. You just can’t anticipate what he’ll do on the bump each time he gets the pearl.

Drew Smyly (CHC) vs WSH (L) – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 99 pitches.

Seven strikeouts, cool, but your curve is still getting hit. STOP IT. Stop letting that curve sit high enough to get hit. That is all.

Sonny Gray (MIN) @ SEA (L) – 5.2 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 101 pitches.

They got to Gray here, mostly on pitches in the heart of the plate, but also by being shockingly passive on pitches outside the zone as Gray tried to go sweeper/four-seamer as much as possible. After his blistering April, it is so dang weird to see Sonny throw just eight curves in a game. Welp, the story of Sonny is volatility and here we are again, old friend.

Paul Blackburn (OAK) vs BOS (L) – 5.2 IP, 6 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 97 pitches.

Okay okay, no more Blackburn. Sorry, Paulie Punchouts, you’ve thrown your last haymaker for a while.

Quinn Priester (PIT) vs CLE (L) – 5.1 IP, 7 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 73 pitches.

Here’s the thing – I actually love Priester’s breaking balls. But I hate his changeup that went 0/15 CSW and a 92 mph sinker that caught oh-so-much of the plate. He actually tossed three shutout frames before running into trouble in each of the following three and there’s a chance he becomes a Brady Singer Cherry Bomb where he sneaks in sinkers for outs and called strikes while the breakers do the rest. I absolutely wouldn’t bank on that and prefer just to avoid him outright (it’s also the loss-heavy Pirates), but I recognize there’s a chance here.


Game of the Day


Joe Musgrove vs. Alek Manoah – Musgrove just got his AGA tag and Manoah is…doing something. I wonder what it is.

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: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm ET Monday through Friday.

Photo by Charles Brock/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.

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