Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup – Andy Undertow

Nick Pollack reviews every starting pitcher performance from Wednesday.

Welcome to the SP Roundup, my daily fantasy baseball article reviewing every starting pitcher’s performance from every Wednesday game. I apologize for the jokes written in my delirium in advance. Have questions? Ask me during my office hours on Playback.tv weekday mornings from 10 am-12 pm ET.

Andrew Abbott (CIN) @ LAA (ND) – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 75 pitches.

This has been one interesting rookie season for Andrew AbbottThrough his first ten starts in the bigs, Abbott won the hearts of many fantasy managers, boasting a 1.90 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, and 28% strikeout rate across 61.2 IP. That’s some hot dang production. However, with 10 ER in two starts, Abbott faced a bit of difficulty as August arrived, and after today’s 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 75 pitches disappointment, that makes three of his last five games with a clunker.

The thing is, there isn’t anything all that different about Abbott in my view. It’s a mix of the young southpaw performing far above his head across those first ten games, then having the traditional bumps in the road every pitcher goes through during a season, especially in their first rodeo. In addition, Abbott’s skill set is a good one, but it never seemed immaculate, with four-seamers hoping to sit upstairs but often failing to do so, and a rotation of breakers between sweepers and curves, with one of the two usually out of service for the day.

In the end, I see a pitcher in the middle. He’s not going to routinely go seven frames with double-digit strikeouts. He’s also not an arm to throw to the wire in the slightest. He has a solid heater with a trio of secondaries where at least one should appear on a given day to get him through at least five frames. Sure, the home ballpark doesn’t do him favors and the command is a weird one, but he’s an arm that generally should be better than this flirtation with mediocrity.


Let’s see how every other SP did Wednesday:


Charlie Morton (ATL) vs NYM (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 11 Ks – 19 Whiffs, 39% CSW, 109 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! That’s a Gallows Pole for Morton as it looks like he took personal offense to his low ranking a few weeks ago. I love seeing him at the top of his game as y’all have been starting him with frustration through the terrible ratio nights. And yet, here he is finding a way to get his ERA under 3.40 for the season and his WHIP…sits at 1.39. The man is a living Strawberry Frosted Donut with a whole lot of dust on it.

Luis Severino (NYY) vs WSH (W) – 6.2 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 97 pitches.

There’s your Gold Star for the night but don’t you do anything silly here, y’all. You know the lack of strikeouts, whiffs, and mediocre CSW isn’t a good thing. Every pitcher in the majors has a chance for balls to find gloves. Julio. Teheran. We’re not there yet.

Cole Ragans (KC) @ OAK (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 11 Ks – 18 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 99 pitches.

HAHAHAHAHA. Cole Rayguns with the PEW PEW PEW. So. Um. Yeah. He’s legit and you know it now. There’s no more hiding it, even if this was the Athletics. We were excited he was sitting 96 mph in his other starts, now he’s at 98 mph. The mad man TOPPED OUT AT 101. I could list so many fun stats, but you want to know my favorite? Across all 33 fastballs (61% strike rate), Ragans didn’t allow a single one to be hit into play. Not one. A 45% CSW with five foul balls as the changeup, cutter, and slider all returned well over a 60% strike rate. Pew. Pew. Pew. Now he gets the Pirates and White Sox and it’s so fun to be hyped for an SP’s routine starts again. This is why we do this.

Seth Lugo (SD) vs MIA (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 93 pitches.

Being a Toby is some good, honest work. Gotta love the sinker earning called strikes like a champ + curveballs earning whiffs. Good stuff.

Dean Kremer (BAL) vs TOR (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 94 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! I felt that Kremer had to bring his best four-seamer to make this one work and to his credit, he located the pitch well, while earning some solid strikes with the curve and sinker along with the always-steady cutter. With that out of the way, enjoy the respite of ChiSox + Angels next.

Michael Kopech (CWS) vs SEA (ND) – 4.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 65 pitches.

Kopech was finding a way to survive until he was removed from the game while warming up in the fifth due to cramps. It was hot out there in Chicago. He sat 94.2 mph, which could have been influenced by the heat, but honestly, it tracks with Kopech’s recent efforts. No thanks.

Shohei Ohtani (LAA) vs CIN (ND) – 1.1 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 5 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 26 pitches.

For those of you seeing him down four ticks and getting removed after four outs, don’t worry too much – it’s a finger related injury. That said, I wouldn’t want the Angels to let Ohtani pitch anymore this year to make it heal properly…but the Angels might lose Ohtani at the end of the season. I’m curious when we see him on the mound next.

UPDATE: Ohtani has a torn UCL and will not pitch again this season.

Adrián Martínez (OAK) vs KC (L) – 2.1 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 41 pitches.

Martínez has a pretty fun changeup when it’s on, but he’s not stretched out at all and I wouldn’t expect him to be any time soon. He was one of two who opened for 66 pitches of Kyle Mullerwho sported harder pitches across the board, but not the command you want to see. We’re far away still.

Clayton Kershaw (LAD) @ CLE (ND) – 2.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 36% CSW, 33 pitches.

There’s TATIAGAgetting another legendary start snatched from him by the dang weather. It’ll resume on Thursday and I wonder if this means we’ll get Kershaw a second time earlier than usual.

Kevin Gausman (TOR) @ BAL (L) – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 107 pitches.

Aces gonna ace as the velocity is once again back to 96 mph. It’s nice to see the man get what he deserved in 2022.

Alex Cobb (SF) @ PHI (ND) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 92 pitches.

Ayyyy, the splitter came back! 9/47 whiffs with a ton of outs in play. That’ll work. Now do it again. PLEASE. It’s the Pirates next so I guess we have a decent hedge there to consider him at least a questionable option now.

Zack Thompson (STL) @ PIT (W) – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 90 pitches.

It’s all…fine. I want to be more excited about Thompson, and maybe his cutter should deserve my adoration, but this version of Thompson was pretty meh. It looks like he’ll get the Padres next after Matthew Liberatore’s IL stint, and with their tendencies to demolish LHP, that’s an absolute avoid. Suitman whispers into my earHe gets Atlanta after that?! Jeeeeeez, no thanks.

MacKenzie Gore (WSH) @ NYY (L) – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 80 pitches.

So the Yankees are a team to stream when the Judge doesn’t hit three homeruns. Noted. What about Gore? Oh. No. Noted. Who’s Ted? NICK. PLEASE.

Austin Gomber (COL) @ TB (ND) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 82 pitches.

VPQS on any night is great for Gomber, let alone against the Rays and especially when his velocity was two ticks down on everything. Oh dear.

George Kirby (SEA) @ CWS (ND) – 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 100 pitches.

Nothing like a touch of Careful, Icarus to ruin a phenomenal night as Kirby allowed two runs in the sixth and couldn’t close the door. The slider did exactly what we wanted – 9/40 whiffs! Perfect approach and execution! – and that should be your takeaway from this one. He just needs to repeat that breaker each time out and he’ll be a Top 10 SP if he keeps his classic four-seamer, no joke.

Aaron Civale (TB) vs COL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks – 16 Whiffs, 44% CSW, 80 pitches.

Whoaaaa, a King Cole for Civale as he featured fastballs just 25% of the time (yay) and…oh come on. This was my biggest worry about Civale going to the Rays: They’d pull him at 80 pitches. His velocity was fine, he literally had 40%+ CSW on his four most thrown pitches. Don’t take him out, I don’t care if he hit a batter and allowed a single in the sixth. THEY SCORED ANYWAY. Not cool Tampa Bay, not cool.

Lyon Richardson (CIN) @ LAA (ND) – 4.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 79 pitches.

We have no expectations for Richardson and yet, I can’t be a little interested in his sinker sitting armside, his four-seamer getting somewhat upstairs, and the changeup landing down with precision + a few curves sprinkled in over the plate. Makes me wonder if he’s closer than the results will tell you…nah. You have to wait to see if he actually has the potential or not.

Kenta Maeda (MIN) @ MIL (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 92 pitches.

Ehhhh, I want one ER fewer, but whatareyagonnado. At least the splitter had a 60% strike rate. And the slider? Oh, that wasn’t so great, actually. Hmmmm. That’s two starts now without a good slider, surely that’s not going to be a thing now, right?

Xzavion Curry (CLE) vs LAD (ND) – 2.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks – 1 Whiffs, 16% CSW, 38 pitches.

This game was suspended in the third and will be continued on Thursday. That said, 1/38 whiffs overall for Curry with those ratios makes this a bit of a blessing to limit the evening’s damage.

Reid Detmers (LAA) vs CIN (L) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 94 pitches.

Blegh. The previous outing wasn’t as promising as the final line suggested and sadly this was a massive step back for Detmers, who sat just 93 mph on the four-seamer (you’re supposed to be 95+!) and just a 17% CSW on the slider. His command was horrendous and I don’t know this man. It’s awfully frustrating for me to know how good he can be if he’s able to properly harness his repertoire, but he’s far away from that ceiling right now and I don’t encourage starting him with the hope of it suddenly coming back. Reid these notes and make the move you don’t want to make.

Sandy Alcantara (MIA) @ SD (L) – 6.2 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 105 pitches.

Sigh. I really wanted Sandy to come through here, earning his AGA label back after a long and difficult journey. Instead we got a VVPPS – something I just made up to say it’s a VVPQS but not of quality and adding an extra P for each run more than four. It made sense to me, whatever. Y’all know this doesn’t change my view of Sandy at all, it’s just annoying. Not a single hit off his 25 changeups despite a 60% strike rate, too.

Tarik Skubal (DET) vs CHC (ND) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 34% CSW, 85 pitches.

Skubal endured a 105 mph comebacker to the thigh and stayed in the game. Sure, we want a better ERA, but salvaging a decent WHIP with seven strikeouts is what good SPs do when they have their off days – his four-seamer returned just one whiff after he could not elevate that thing for the life of him. It’ll be better.

Jameson Taillon (CHC) @ DET (ND) – 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 99 pitches.

I kinda dug the curve and cutter usage here and he nearly pulled it off. Still not a bad chase against the Brewers up next – he may be a true Toby at the end of the day, hotly debated for your roster spot as you scour the wire.

Michael Lorenzen (PHI) vs SF (ND) – 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 93 pitches.

Oh, so now Lorenzen isn’t good against poor offenses. Ah. Welp, this was a fun ride, and if you want to give it one more shot against the Angels, by all Johns means. For me, I’m out. You wouldn’t want him for the Padres start after, anyway.

Chris Sale (BOS) @ HOU (ND) – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks – 19 Whiffs, 39% CSW, 80 pitches.

That’s a Gallows Pole for Sale, which is a bit surprising as he was still down on his fastball velocity for a while, until he began ramping it up to 95/96 mph by the end. Phew. The slider was the real money maker here, featuring 10/44 whiffs and a fantastic ability to avoid the heart of the plate, and if Sale didn’t get squeezed or allow a tater to Maldonado, then we’d be singing a much different tune. This feels cool with me.

José Urquidy (HOU) vs BOS (ND) – 4.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 100 pitches.

Womp womp. I was so jazzed by Urquidy’s command in his recent outing, only to see him go from the perfect kitchen-sink approach to 60% four-seamers for 21% CSW. This ain’t it all around, but I’d take a shot starting Urquidy a second time against the Red Sox. Surely his secondaries will be better and he’ll avoid the dreaded HAISTBMBWT?!

José Quintana (NYM) @ ATL (L) – 5.1 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 21% CSW, 100 pitches.

That’s why we dropped Quintana last week, y’all. Next up is Texas and that’s a bench as well. As long as his command isn’t as bad as this one, Quintana is a fun candidate to pick up after with the Nationals and Diamondbacks on the docket.

Luis L. Ortiz (PIT) vs STL (L) – 3.1 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 5 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 90 pitches.

He’s nothing like that exciting man we saw in September last year. Who, Carl? The guy who served us a hot dog? No, definitely not. Why do you remember Carl? WHY DON’T YOU?!

Corbin Burnes (MIL) vs MIN (ND) – 6.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 99 pitches.

THIS IS WHY YOU ALWAYS LEAVE A NOTE WE DIDN’T GIVE YOU AGA. Ugh, Burnes. What a weird year this has been. You really just can’t get into a groove with your cutter and curve, can you? I think we can all understand that Burnes didn’t pitch to the level of a Jordan Lyles (sorry for the stray, Lyles) and won’t continue to do so, but hot dang is it frustrating watching you go from stud to dud. Y’all have no choice but to start him next time (again, he’s not this bad) and it’ll likely be better. I feel for y’all.


Game of the Day 

Pablo López vs. Texas Rangers – He’s the newest AGA and I hope the changeup is back. It’ll also help me forget we have to wait another five days to watch Cole Ragans again. Sigh…

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

Have Questions? – Join my morning Playback.tv livestream! I answer all questions there for free: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm ET Monday through Friday.

Photo by Leslie Plaza Johnson/Icon Sportswire | Featured Image by Ethan Kaplan (@DJFreddie10 on Twitter and @EthanMKaplanImages on Instagram)

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.

4 responses to “Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup – Andy Undertow”

  1. One Regend says:

    So Sandy Alcantara had a PQS heading into the 7th inning, with only 3 strikeouts and not his best stuff shown for the night. Then his skipper decided to trot him out into the 7th inning.

    I’d sooner call Careful, Icarus, over… whatever VVPPS is supposed to be.

  2. N says:

    I traded for both Ohtani (P-only) and Burnes back in June or whatever who cares

  3. Andrew says:

    Ohtani – “For those of you seeing him down four ticks and getting removed after four outs, don’t worry too much – it’s a finger related injury.”


  4. Nick says:

    I have to wonder if the heat impacted Burnes and Maeda in yesterday’s game. A day game in the sun, roof open, no AC. Temperature hit 100 in Milwaukee with insanely high humidity and heat index. Watching the game both pitchers seemed gassed from the start. Every pitcher in the game struggled to keep their hands dry and throw strikes. I know Burnes hasn’t been consistent but this seems like a weird one given the environment situation.

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