What Dreams May Come

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 Twitch weekday mornings from 9 am-11 am ET.  

Dustin May (LAD) vs MIA (W) – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 41% CSW, 71 pitches.

It’s been a long time since we saw Dustin May display his curls and hurl a baseball and his return to the bump was as good as any of us could have dreamed via 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 41% CSW, 71 pitches against the Marlins. Yes, the man earned a King Cole in his first start back. He’s pretty dang good.

I remember being blown away in 2021 as he developed the missing piece – a legit breaker to earn whiffs as his sinker was hit far more than I’d like, despite its elite velocity. Back then, his cutter in the lower 90s suddenly became the whiff weapon in May’s arsenal and today it was used as a strike-earner with the curve missing all the bats – 7/20 whiffs to be exact. That paired with 97/98 mph sinkers is a pretty dang good combo.

The biggest worry is the volatility of his heater. He got into a bit of trouble in the first before wiggling out of it via strikeouts as he couldn’t locate his sinker all of a sudden. It’s something he wrestled with here-and-there before getting TJS and it’s the only thing standing in the way of legit success moving forward. Will May be able to get his sinker inside against right-handers and avoid barrels against lefties? With the curve missing bats and cutters stealing strikes, it’s all there for him to soar at this point.

He’ll be Top 40 on Monday given the 71 pitches here and could quickly rise into the Top 30 as long as he doesn’t waver with that sinker. Keep in mind, he may not get as many starts as some other arms given the Dodgers’ six-man rotation, but I think you’ll forget all about that with the strikeouts piling up. It’s good to see Dustin checking in once again.


Let’s see how every other SP did Saturday:


Johnny Cueto (CWS) @ CLE (W) – 8.2 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 113 pitches.

What a ridiculous man. 113 pitches and just four whiffs?! AND IT WORKED?! Y’all know this is some ridiculousness, but there’s a reason we made a rule for it. Vargas Rule away, y’all.

Glenn Otto (TEX) @ MIN (ND) – 5.2 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 86 pitches.

HAISTBMBWT?! The man earned just three whiffs and survived against the Twins?! ARE YOU SURE ABOUT THAT?! Okay fine, he must have had some excellent sinkers to earn so many outs…NOOOOPE. You do you, baseball.

Michael Wacha (BOS) @ BAL (W) – 5.2 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 79 pitches.

I am absolutely dumbfounded that Wacha holds a 2.28 ERA across 83.0 innings after this start. His command was decent but not the precision of last week’s game, leading to just three changeup whiffs here, and all I can do is say Really?! Him?! I guess you have no choice but to keep it going against the Rays.

Trevor Williams (NYM) @ PHI (ND) – 4.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 71 pitches.

I’m not sure why you elected to start T-dubs, but I think we can all agree this is far better than you hoped. You animal.

Shane Bieber (CLE) vs CWS (L) – 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 99 pitches.

Aces gonna ace and kinda disappoint with just four strikeouts and a mediocre WHIP. Oh and his fastball velocity sitting 91.5 mph instead of the 93+ we saw last time. NOOOOOOO. Still love him, though.

Bailey Falter (PHI) vs NYM (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 84 pitches.

Props to Falter for taking advantage of his spot start for this doubleheader, it doesn’t mean I’m targeting him when he gets his next chance, sadly. Don’t post Bailey on the wire.

Joe Musgrove (SD) vs WSH (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 97 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. Phew. I wanted to lower Musgrove after his last start and I’m still going to with just eight whiffs on the board here – he needs that slider to return. I don’t think this was prime Musgrove and it’s nice to see Natty Lite finally come through on their end. Y’all aren’t that good of an offense.

Spencer Strider (ATL) vs HOU (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks – 21 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 104 pitches.

That’s a Gallows Pole as he shared the whiffs between four-seamer and slider. Surprisingly, he earned just 56% strikes on the slider, but came through when he needed to. He’s still a bit too much on the see-saw for my liking (he doesn’t have a third pitch to save him when he can’t get a strike with his slider), but obviously we keep starting the man.

Cristian Javier (HOU) @ ATL (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 106 pitches.

You were debating between Strider and Javier and the correct answer was “yes”. Pretty dang cool to see the slider return 12 whiffs here, stealing the normal thunder from the heater. More breaker strikes = more dominance from Javier.

Ryan Feltner (COL) vs SF (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 86 pitches.

Whoa, a Birthday Party for Feltner? How kind of him to host it on a Saturday when everyone could be free. Next time, can you let us know? K thx. The slider returned a whopping 43% CSW, but we can’t trust this.

Josiah Gray (WSH) @ SD (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 5 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 102 pitches.

Ummm this is weird. You can argue it fits the Cherry Bomb bill, but it’s supposed to be the other extreme, of a high strikeout rate with a questionable ERA, not the other way around. And a 1.80 WHIP?! WHAT IS THIS. He returned just 5/46 whiffs on breakers as he was a bit all over the place and it’s more of the same “oh right, he’s not polished.” The Reds are next and that should fare better, but as gravity constantly reminds us, the floor is always present.

Justin Dunn (CIN) @ PIT (W) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 87 pitches.

Aha! Dunn was okay! He had plenty of control issues with the four-seamer and curve…and changeup…and OKAY FINE EVERYTHING, but he did execute some lovely sliders and curves along the way. We’re still far from actually trusting him with a roster spot, but a man can dream of a future where Dunn takes steps forward long enough that I can suggest Dunn as a late 350th overall pick in March.

Chris Archer (MIN) vs TEX (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 77 pitches.

I wonder if I should have a term for these five-inning starts where guys squeeze all they can to get the most value out of them. I’m happy it was one of those days for Archer, and y’all know you shouldn’t lean on it happening again soon.

Mitch White (TOR) @ NYY (ND) – 4.0 IP, 1 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 73 pitches.

White has taken over for Yusei Kikuchi in the Jays’ rotation and I can see some wondering if there’s something to it. In short, not really. His slider is solid, the fastball isn’t, and it’ll take a moment before he can even sniff six frames. It’s not worth it.

Marcus Stroman (CHC) vs MIL (ND) – 7.2 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 96 pitches.

Much better, Stroman. Muuuuch better. Let it ride, let it ride. What are ya, Johnny two-times? Maybe. Maybe…

Freddy Peralta (MIL) @ CHC (ND) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 95 pitches.

Peralta hovered around the edge of the zone and while I’m glad it ultimately worked, it’s a bit precarious as I’m not ready to say he’s “back”. Okay fine, the five strikeouts and three walks told you that, but you get my point. Here’s to hoping he clicks into place in another start against the Cubs next weekend.

Drew Rasmussen (TB) vs KC (W) – 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 89 pitches.

That’s a lovely follow-up to his flirtation with perfection as the slider and cutter missed bats once again, located down-and-armside frequently. The man is locked in and now he gets the Angels next. What a time to be alive.

James Kaprielian (OAK) vs SEA (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 78 pitches.

You’ll take this from a Toby like Jimmy Hat over here, as he went four-seamer/slider per usual. I’d sit him against the Yankees – I fear they’ll wake up against Oakland, they have to at some point.

Logan Gilbert (SEA) @ OAK (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 66 pitches.

Ehhhh okay. There was so discussion about Gilbert’s curve going around with its different shape n all and what we got was a pitch floated up in the zone plenty, failing to earn a single whiff as I twiddle my thumbs and wait for a time to actually get excited for Girby. I wonder if we’ll have Kirby vs. Gilbert debates this off-season and how many will pick Kirby like me. Everyone will. You think? I wonder.

Alex Cobb (SF) @ COL (ND) – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 87 pitches.

It’s Coors, yes, but 0/21 whiffs on the splitter is still a shock. Props to Cobb for returning a better-than-PQS despite it. The Twins are next so we’re still not jumping back in yet.

Tyler Alexander (DET) vs LAA (W) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 96 pitches.

PQS with a 1.33 WHIP and just two strikeouts ain’t pretty, but a dub is a dub. Kinda like watching Godzilla in English.

Kyle Bradish (BAL) vs BOS (L) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 98 pitches.

I see this line from Bradish against the Red Sox and all I want to do is celebrate it. Yep, it’s that kind of season.

David Peterson (NYM) @ PHI (L) – 4.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 100 pitches.

Womp womp. The slider had its moments, but the Phils got to him a fair amount and his day was ruined. Don’t let this leave a bad taste in your mouth, though – I’d start him against Rockie Road next as the strikeouts are still there.

Gerrit Cole (NYY) vs TOR (L) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 106 pitches.

That’s six straight winless starts from Cole as not even he can pull the Yankees out of their funk. Surely he’s going to dominate the Athletics, right? Right?!

Zack Wheeler (PHI) vs NYM (L) – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 106 pitches.

Aces gonna stumble for the second game in a row against the Mets. Maybe the dude gets the jitters against his old team, I dunno. It’s the Reds and Diamondbacks next and there’s no reason to worry.

Dakota Hudson (STL) @ ARI (ND) – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 77 pitches.

And this is why you don’t chance it with Dakota. These Hudson valleys are rough.

Reid Detmers (LAA) @ DET (L) – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 10 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 81 pitches.

Ummm what. Detmers, you’ve been money and this was the Tigers. THE TIGERS. Sadly, his command was off across both four-seamers and sliders, forcing him to turn to more changeups and curves than we’d like. This is not a relapse to his pre-minors stint, this is one singular bad start. It’s a tough call with the Blue Jays next, I’m willing to give Detmers the benefit of the doubt in one outing and I’m starting him there. Make the adjustment.

Tyler Beede (PIT) vs CIN (L) – 4.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 65 pitches.

He failed to earn a single whiff between his slider and curveball as the fastball fell to 95 mph. Sigh. Not today, Beede. Not today.

Kris Bubic (KC) @ TB (L) – 3.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 0 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 13% CSW, 76 pitches.

Annnnd that’s 91 mph (not 93). PACK IT UP BOYS.

Madison Bumgarner (ARI) vs STL (ND) – 5.1 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 93 pitches.

Hey MadBum. This isn’t our first rodeo and apparently not yours either. Sure, Bumgarner can be of value for those in need of something, but in standard leagues, there is no reason to hold. You already knew that.

Bryan Hoeing (MIA) @ LAD – 3.0 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 6 Whifs, 27% CSW, 73 pitches – With Braxton Garrett hitting the IL earlier today, the Marlins called on Hoeing to toss the pearl. He did what he could and there’s no reason to fly with Hoeing.

Game of the Day 


Shohei Ohtani vs. Eduardo Rodriguez – It’s Ohtani vs. the Tigers (oh my) and it’s the long-awaited return of Erod. Sign me 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.

Featured image by Michael Packard (@CollectingPack 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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