The Battle of Voth

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Friday.

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

Austin Voth (BAL) @ TB (W) – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 80 pitches.

Today is a fun headliner as we get to talk about Austin Voth after producing a Win against the Rays via 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 80 pitches. Voth was a late-round darling in years past with the Nationals, at times showcasing multiple whiff secondaries and glistening with an aura of “I have the potential to break out if given the chance.” He wasn’t given one and didn’t develop enough, and we collectively forgot about him.

Now he’s with the Orioles, and while it didn’t matter for a while, the last three starts have been a bit more thrilling. He’s still around 75-80 pitches, but his curveball has woken up, taking a 25% O-Swing pitch for the season into 40%+ marks in each of these games, helping return a 39% CSW on Friday. The pitch was pristinely placed down-and-armside, allowing his heater to sneak into the zone above it.

It’s mostly that two-pitch mix at the moment, though he had a slider (now cutter) and changeup in the past return 18%+ SwStr rates and I wonder how we’ll see them perform moving forward. The cutter has become a strike machine (7/10 here) and maybe that’s enough – curves as the money pitch, fastballs and cutters not getting crushed in the zone. This is all to say Voth is someone to consider for his next start against the Cubs (please toss more than 80 pitches?), but I have my concerns against tougher opponents – these last three lineups have been the Reds, Pirates, and Rays. Ride it now, but don’t hesitate to put the Voth to the flame when those matchups get worse.


Let’s see how every other SP did Friday:


Cal Quantrill (CLE) @ TOR (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 98 pitches.

Well well well, look at you. Sometimes I like to take credit for getting pitchers back into shape as they perform well after I call out their terrible stretch, but I think that’s just a dumb defense mechanism for me incorrectly outlining the doom and gloom of the future. All that said, I’m in absolute shock Quantrill allowed just one hit and fanned seven in as many innings against the fantastic Jays offense. It may be a product of sitting over a tick harder on his sinker, now 94/95 mph instead of just 93/94, as it’s certainly not a change of approach with him still leaning fastball/cutter. At least we’ll comfortably be able to see if this trend continues as he faces the Tigers next. What a lovely gift that team is.

Michael Kopech (CWS) vs DET (ND) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 3 BBs, 11 Ks – 22 Whiffs, 45% CSW, 85 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! Sure, sure, the Tigers n whatnot, but a Golden Goal as the velocity was nearly 96 mph is a very welcome sight. The slider was a bit better and the rest was…terrible, but the heater returned 17 whiffs on its own and I’m glad we had this moment of bliss from Kopech. Now expect despair against the Astros as he’s still a Cherry Bomb – half of that is being sweet, you know.

Tyler Mahle (MIN) @ LAA (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 86 pitches.

Ahhhh, there we go. Mahle was on the road and faced the Angels, what more do you want? I really do hope the whole home/road thing is legit over now, by the way. That was a product of Cincy’s home park…right?

Jordan Montgomery (STL) vs MIL (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 108 pitches.

Wow. Eleven straight scoreless frames from The Bear after leaving the Yankees, now fanning eight batters as his curve and change returned 10 whiffs combined. He’s suddenly focused more on four-seamers, too, and did a phenomenal job locating them up-and-armside here. I wonder if the Cards are pushing him in a different direction that is clearly working.

Daniel Lynch (KC) vs LAD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 105 pitches.

Hey, that’s the Dodgers! Lynch’s slider command was fantastic, but the changeup was atrocious, and the four-seamer wasn’t spotted like I want it to. But hey, he survived the Dodgers and that’s fun…now he gets the Twins. The way I see it, Lynch can go in three directions: Either the four-seamer command improves, or the slider command gets worse, or it stays the same. If it’s the first, he ascends and becomes a must-add. However, the latter two are awfully precarious and spell disaster against the Twins. I don’t think the odds are in his favor and that’s not me just giving each outcome a 33% chance.

Daniel Norris (DET) @ CWS (ND) – 4.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 64 pitches.

Well ain’t this a surprise. Just 64 pitches as Norris has little fantasy relevance, and maybe it’s moreso a sign of the White Sox trying so hard, but in the end not really mattering as they can’t even hit southpaws now. Yeeeesh.

Josh Sborz (TEX) vs SEA (ND) – 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 0 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 16 pitches.

No, Sborz isn’t the sequel to that EA evolution game, he’s just the opener to Taylor Hearnwho earned 4/63 whiffs on his pitches and allowed 3 ER in 2.2 frames. Yep.

Max Scherzer (NYM) vs PHI (ND) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 98 pitches.

Aces gonna ace as we yell at Bryson Stott for ruining our WHIP (three hits, 1 HBP). Doesn’t he know our fantasy seasons are on the line?

Ranger Suárez (PHI) @ NYM (ND) – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 93 pitches.

You may be thinking “whoa, Nick was right! Suárez is going to have the best second half!” and I’d say, why thank you. And then catch myself in my dumb pride and say buuuut this wasn’t how I imagined it. Gotta keep that personal inventory going. Ranger didn’t have his changeup working – 1/19 whiffs, 53% strikes – and this was a start where he located fastballs away from the heart of the plate. That’s part of it, but it can’t be all of it. I’m a little cautious of him heading into Cincy next without that changeup being more reliable, and he’ll be in the Questionable Start tier.

Tony Gonsolin (LAD) @ KC (W) – 6.2 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 85 pitches.

Yeah, okay. The splitter did well, but the slider was once again the #4 pitch and that’s awfully weird to me. I want that pitch back and while the curve wasn’t bad, Gonsolin’s slider has catalyzed success far more. Meanwhile, the four-seamer wasn’t well commanded and it feels icky once again. But fine, we still start him against the Cardinals…I’m just gonna remove the AGA label if that’s okay with y’all.

Domingo Germán (NYY) @ BOS (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 86 pitches.

Strong stuff here from Domingo, who battled around the edges and made a fair amount of competitive pitches. He wasn’t dominant, but he wasn’t terrible either, living in that purgatory zone where the start could have gone well or poorly based on our baseball lords above. His odds should be better against the Rays next time and that’s an okay start by me.

Mike Clevinger (SD) @ WSH (W) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 94 pitches.

This was Natty Lite and Clev returned just four whiffs on non-fastballs. He’s like Noah Syndergaard in that he’s not the man he used to be and we need to treat him as such. At least there’s more hope he can return to his former self, but I wouldn’t bank on it. Thing is, it’s Miami next so we can keep trying here.

Carlos Rodón (SF) vs PIT (W) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 110 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. Sigh, can he pitch against the Pirates every day?

Nathan Eovaldi (BOS) vs NYY (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 108 pitches.

That WHIP is poor, but at least you got another start with a good ERA from Eovaldi – has he become the king of the Dusty DonutThe velocity is still massively down at 94.4 mph, though it seems to be enough for the Pirates next. If you still have him, that may be the last time you do.

George Kirby (SEA) @ TEX (W) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 83 pitches.

It’s a Philly with a poor WHIP, but everything else helps. The four-seamer didn’t dominate like we’ve seen and we all know the slider/curve/change ain’t gonna step up to maintain production across the board. That said, the sinker and four-seamer are still good when they aren’t at their peak and it allows a chance of success against a team like the Rangers. He gets the Angels next, so strap in for another fun one.

Pablo López (MIA) vs ATL (ND) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 93 pitches.

Phew. There was some concern after Pablo failed to come through for two straight starts, but he had his changeup working and upped the heater to nearly 95 mph in this one. Much better overall command and hopefully this is a step in the right direction. He gets the Padres next and…let’s do it.

Patrick Sandoval (LAA) vs MIN (L) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 95 pitches.

Sigh. The changeup isn’t what it used to be, and while this was the Twins, I’m tired of waiting for this to click. Sure, it could very easily be a TIARA situation, but ain’t nobody got time for that with close to eight weeks left of the year. Sorry Irish Panda, but I can’t live like this anymore. Suitman whispers in my earWHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME HE GETS THE TIGERS NEXT? Okay, fine. You better step it up there.

Adam Oller (OAK) @ HOU (ND) – 4.2 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 78 pitches.

Is this good for Oller against the Astros? I guess…?

Jake Odorizzi (ATL) @ MIA (ND) – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 87 pitches.

Ah dangit. That WHIP is rough as the cutter and slider were too inconsistent (55% strikes) and the heaters were hit more than expected. Take off the Mets next, but return for the Pirates after.

Eric Lauer (MIL) @ STL (L) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 95 pitches.

That’s a PQS with a decent amount of strikeouts as the velocity is still down, and now he gets the Dodgers twice. Yeah, nah. I think you’re better off streaming.

Antonio Senzatela (COL) vs ARI (ND) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 18% CSW, 94 pitches.

For those that don’t celebrate a PQSthis start gave you two strikeouts at the cost of terrible ratios. Yay.

Zach Davies (ARI) @ COL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 18% CSW, 82 pitches.

This is pretty dang good for Coors, but the changeup is still poor and it’s too risky for the Giants next. There’s a chance it returns there, but we haven’t seen it.

Cory Abbott (WSH) vs SD (L) – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 90 pitches.

Hey ain’t no Jim, I’ll tell you that. He doesn’t have a terrible set of breakers, but the slider is a bit spotty, and it’s an overall highly questionable approach. No thanks.

Luis Garcia (HOU) vs OAK (W) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 97 pitches.

I have to note, this was a Careful, Icarus in the seventh inning, but still, not fun. That’s 4 ER allowed in three of his last four games (the other being 3 ER), twice against Oakland. He’s relied more and more on the heater, and ultimately it’s not that great. The cutter did its best at 8/34 whiffs here but the curve went 4/11 strikes and the slider is non-existent. I wonder if this is the same fatigue we saw last year from Garcia and I’ll be lowering him on The List on Monday. Keep in mind, though, the Astros have a wonderful schedule down the stretch and it may help keep Garcia afloat…even if he’s struggled twice now against the Athletics.

Bryse Wilson (PIT) @ SF (L) – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 85 pitches.

Oh look, Wilson started and produced a HAISTBMBWT?! Welp, see ya later.

Corey Kluber (TB) vs BAL (L) – 5.2 IP, 7 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 88 pitches.

Womp womp. We debated this one in the Twitch chat Friday morning and I said “yeah, sure, this should be fine.” WHAT DO I KNOW. He got Singled Out quite a bit here but he now seems like a tough man to trust with a date against the Yankees next. Don’t worry, the Angels are after if you want to give him a break there. I don’t think this was a start that screams “welp, that was fun, PACK IT IN BOYS!”

José Berríos (TOR) vs CLE (L) – 4.0 IP, 8 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 73 pitches.

Oh jeeeeeeez this is getting so dang bad. The José Ramírez home run was off a ridiculous swing on a pretty nasty changeup out of the zone and sometimes, that’s just how baseball is. The man is the pinnacle of Cherry Bomb and me sitting here calling him The Great Undulator has been making many of you raging mad all year. Sorry about that – it had been the case for his entire career! Now I’m sure he will have some great starts the rest of the way, but it feels so dang random when those games will happen and you may be better off just streaming instead.


Game of the Day


DL Hall vs. Shane McClanahanIt’s Hall’s MLB debut + McClanahan. What a wonderful day. Keep in mind, Hall is going to the pen after this one, so you don’t need to pick him up.

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 Mark Goldman/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.

One response to “The Battle of Voth”

  1. Matt says:

    But Voth’s last name rhymes with “both,” not with “Hoth!”

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