Running Up The Miles

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Sunday.

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

Miles Mikolas (STL) @ CIN (L) – 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 100 pitches.

It’s the second half, which means we get an arbitrary point to say a guy “fell off in the second half” and one shocking name that could do just that is Miles Mikolaswho got off to a head start with today’s destructive 5.0 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 100 pitches outing against the Reds. Uh oh.

Nah, it’s not time to sound the alarms n whatnot, especially when the man sat nearly two ticks harder on his sinker. I think this was simply one of those regression games where things didn’t go his way for a change and that’s all there is to it. Feel free to sell high on the basis that Mikolas boasts a near 4.00 SIERA, a sub 1.00 WHIP that isn’t going to come close to holding with his .240 BABIP, and a strikeout rate south of 20%, but because of this outing? Nah, Mikolas pitched normally and I don’t expect it to be this bad. Still a Tobybut likely not the stud you saw in the first half.


Let’s see how every other SP did Sunday:


Nestor Cortes (NYY) @ BAL (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 94 pitches.

Sweeeeeet. I’ve missed the old Cortes and I’m thrilled to see his four-seamer return 11 whiffs here as it overwhelmed the Orioles. He gets the Royals next and he’s still a must-hold, of course.

Dylan Cease (CWS) vs CLE (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 97 pitches.

That’s a poor WHIP with just four strikeouts. The slider was awfully common in this one while the fastball got hit at the top of the zone. This was weird and we’re going to ignore it and move on.

Carlos Carrasco (NYM) vs SD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 92 pitches.

Talk about a Dusty Donut where Carrasco’s 0.00 ERA is the only positive here as that WHIP hurts, he fanned just one batter (HAISTBMBWT?!) and left without the dub. Have there been many starts where he dominates across the board? I hate that usually something in an outing wasn’t goodAnyway, keep rostering him n all, but he isn’t the man of old – just 2/22 CSW on changeups ain’t it.

Joe Musgrove (SD) @ NYM (L) – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 89 pitches.

Musgrove held a no-hitter through four and had a bit of a Careful, Icarus here, allowing a three-run shot on a decent-but-not-great 2-1 slider to Pete AlonsoThat slider was off for the whole game (1/23 whiffs?!) but the overall velocity was up and I wouldn’t read into this one. Whatareyagonnado.

Reid Detmers (LAA) @ ATL (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 90 pitches.

Ayyyy it worked! Y’all are starting to heavily consider Detmers as a pickup and maybe that’s wise. He’s been a different pitcher since his return from the minors, featuring a lower release point and a harder slider and the pair may be making his four-seamer perform better at the top of the zone. The slider still needs work – 1/28 whiffs and just 18% CSW – but he generally spotted it well as the curve flipped in here and there on the side. There’s more work to be done but if the heater is this good, it could continue. He’s still iffy to me against the Rangers next time out, but definitely worth the spec add now.

Martín Pérez (TEX) @ OAK (W) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 99 pitches.

The dude keeps on cruising, featuring stellar changeup command and avoiding the heart of the plate. It’s not a mystery how he’s performing, it’s a mystery how he is so consistent. What a wonderful Vargas Rule and yes, he’s regained the label, even if this was the A’s.

Sonny Gray (MIN) @ DET (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 37% CSW, 84 pitches.

Look at that, a King Cole for Sonny as he did exactly what he should have against the Tigers. His curve was super legit, the slider was, well, the slider existed, and the four-seamer pounded the zone with ease. I’m a little skeptical of his heater performing this well, but at least the hook is back and that means he’s worth the start against the Padres.

Drew Smyly (CHC) @ PHI (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 83 pitches.

Whoaaa, Smyly brought out the big guns with delicately placed curves at the bottom of the zone + sinkers that weren’t crushed by the Phillies. And the cutter? Oh. That. ANYWAY, we don’t see this kind of command regularly from Smyly, making it unlikely he’ll repeat this against the Giants.

Jeffrey Springs (TB) @ KC (ND) – 4.1 IP, 1 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 17% CSW, 78 pitches.

Hmmmmm. That’s not good. Thanks Nick. His command was a bit wonky as he generally had the plan of attack, but his normal pitch separation blurred far too often and it led to this mediocrity against a pedestrian offense. Maybe I should be cutting him some slack as he hadn’t started since July 5th. Fine, I’ll discount this one, but we need ya for the Guardians next.

Corbin Martin (ARI) vs WSH (ND) – 4.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 5 BBs, 1 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 71 pitches.

Whoaaa it’s Corbin Martin?! I remember him impressing for a moment in Houston before being involved in the Zack Greinke deal. Anyway, this definitely wasn’t that so let’s wait and see if he can harness that heater once again before doing anything silly. Keep an eye on him in NL-Only leagues.

Kris Bubic (KC) vs TB (W) – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 82 pitches.

Yeaaaaah this is a trap. His command was pretty poor and his heater was down to 90.9 mph, not 92+. The bottom line looks solid, the journey was out of a sitcom where he got off at the wrong station with just 15 minutes to find a way to his promotion meeting. I’m out on this one.

Sandy Alcantara (MIA) @ PIT (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 10 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 105 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. Look at you, getting that strikeout rate up as you should against the Pirates. You even sat a full tick harder on the fastball, averaging 98.8 mph today. Simply incredible.

Ross Stripling (TOR) @ BOS (ND) – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 62 pitches.

Soooo Strip earned two whiffs total. And 16% CSW on his plus changeup. HAISTBMBWT?! Sure, it’s the Red Sox, but they’re hurt and floundering and I’m disappointed. At least he gets the Tigers next and I hope I’ll stop being such a Ross baby. I’M SO SORRY IT’S VERY LATE.

Framber Valdez (HOU) @ SEA (W) – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 102 pitches.

That’s a near VPQS from Valdez, but it came with eight strikeouts, a Win, and a lovely Gallows Poleso I’ll cut him some slack. The curve was great, the sinker solid, and even the cutter is getting work done with a 42% CSW. Keep starting the man.

Tyler Mahle (CIN) vs STL (W) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 79 pitches.

Whoa, Mahle survived at home. HALLELUJAH! Can you do so with more than two whiffs on non-fastballs next time? K thx.

Mitch Keller (PIT) vs MIA (ND) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 74 pitches.

We’ll absolutely take this from Keller, marking three straight productive starts now. He barely touched the zone with his four-seamer, saving it mostly for high chases, while leaning on the slider and sinker to find strikes. I guess that works…? The Phils are not in a great place opening the door for another possible successful day at the park for Mitch, but I really don’t want to risk it. This still seems incredibly precarious.

Erick Fedde (WSH) @ ARI (ND) – 4.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 99 pitches.

Remember Kids, Don’t Trust The Feddes.

Rony García (DET) vs MIN (L) – 2.2 IP, 3 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 0 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 62 pitches.

Well, yeah. Rony faced the Twins and he’s all about single-child families. I know, it’s a really weird thing to be passionate about.

Alex Cobb (SF) @ LAD (ND) – 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 104 pitches.

Cobb faced the Dodgers, as if he needed another nemesis as he’s been battling Lady Luck all year. The Cubs next time out are sure to be a better time for him and fantasy managers.

Dean Kremer (BAL) vs NYY (L) – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 83 pitches.

You know, this ain’t so bad against the #1 offense in baseball, and he nearly made it six frames for a PQSThe four-seamer is working, the cutter and curve are…not really, but that fastball! It gives him a chance and that’s something. Not a chance want to take – I don’t think Dean passes the grade – but it’s a chance if you need it.

Bailey Falter (PHI) vs CHC (L) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 82 pitches.

I’m pretty sure the Phils have a prospect named Barnum they’re calling up BECAUSE IT’S A CIRCUS IN HERE. I’m sorry. I really am, Bailey, you deserve better. And hey, a 39% CSW on the sinker and 42% on the curve ain’t bad! Just the most important part of real estate, location, shmocation, vocation. Good ole LSV. Y’all know this ain’t it.

Clayton Kershaw (LAD) vs SF (ND) – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 94 pitches.

Awwww, this TATIAGA start was only his third game above 2 ER all season and even so, his slider was still elite with a 23% SwStr rate and 34% CSW. I wouldn’t freak out about it.

Eric Lauer (MIL) vs COL (ND) – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 92 pitches.

The dude got pretty unlucky, but it’s not like he was pitching at the top of his game, either. His heater sat just 93 mph and went 2/38 whiffs, while his other pals Mr. Curveball, Mr. Slider, and silly ole Cutter were not doing a whole lot. Nick, please get some sleep. I’M TRYING. I can see many of you dropping him with the Red Sox up next and honestly, I don’t blame you. He’s essentially a Cherry Bomb at this point – there’s a shot he does wonders in Boston, but do you want to roll the dice? Do you need to?

Brayan Bello (BOS) vs TOR (L) – 4.0 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 67 pitches.

Oh hey it’s Bello again…and his 96 mph heater earned 1/34 whiffs. Welp, see ya later.

Chad Kuhl (COL) @ MIL (ND) – 2.1 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 85 pitches.

Ah yes, that Kuhl WHIP you never want to ingest.

Shane Bieber (CLE) @ CWS (L) – 6.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 76 pitches.

Bleeeeegh. The slider missed a ton of bats, but was hung a few times, his heater got smacked around, and it didn’t go his way. I won’t preach the whole “regression is coming!” thing after one outing, but if that heater were two ticks harder…I’M JUST SAYING. He should rebound nicely against the Rays and Diamondbacks given how good that slider has been.

Robbie Ray (SEA) vs HOU (L) – 3.0 IP, 6 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 62 pitches.

Ummmm Ray went 0/21 whiffs on his slider and I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before. He couldn’t elevate heaters, nor spot the slider, and it was a day when the man was off. No idea if this was just a blip after the long break or if there’s something major at play, but at least his velocity is the same. And he was on such a good run too…let’s hope it’s just him recalibrating after an extended rest.

Ian Anderson (ATL) vs LAA (L) – 3.0 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 74 pitches.

Ah. So it’s gonna be like that. What a PEAS.

Paul Blackburn (OAK) vs TEX (L) – 4.1 IP, 10 ER, 10 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 85 pitches.

His ERA jumped from 3.62 to 4.35 after this start alone, marking his third straight of 5+ ER, and his fourth in six games. Yeah, you should probably stop doing this.


Game of the Day 


Trevor Rogers vs. Nick Lodolo – It’s the most interesting game to me as both pitchers could perform at a level that turns heads.

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.

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.

One response to “Running Up The Miles”

  1. Ben Chang says:

    I happened to be at the Red Sox game yesterday and I had mixed feelings about Bello. His line was bad and he didn’t execute; there’s no sugarcoating that. However, his defense just did not make plays behind him (and his line looked worse than he deserved).

    In the first inning, Bello faced a 2nd and 3rd situation because Springer reached on a routine grounder that was scored a hit, followed by a double that just skipped out of reach at the 3rd base line (but one that definitely wasn’t scorched).

    The overthrows and throwing errors were comedically awful, but in between, I feel like he flashed some legitimate talent. Maybe I’m blinded by the velocity or too enamored of young pitchers, but I really think we could see something worthwhile from Bello at some point in 2022. Then again, I might just be biased since I own him in a dynasty and am looking for reasons to believe in him.

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