Fantasy Baseball SP Roundup – My Heart Will Rodón

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 Playback.tv weekday mornings from 10 am-12 pm ET.  

Carlos Rodón (NYY) @ PIT (L) – 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks – 20 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 103 pitches.

Alright y’all, one more Carlos Rodón mega blurb. Emotions have been everywhere on him this year. He’s amazing, oh no he’s hurt, he’s never coming back, he’s here, why is he here, please leave, wait there’s hope, no there isn’t, and finally we’re at…HE’S GOOD AGAIN. Today 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks – 20 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 103 pitches follows a nine-strikeout performance in Fenway, but more important was another season-high for his fastball’s velocity at 96.4 mph. NOW WE’RE COOKIN’.

It returned a Golden GoalTen strikeouts. A 23% SwStr rate on 57 four-seamers. It opened the door for his slider and curveball to return 64% strikes and 45% CSW between them. This is the guy we’ve been waiting what, five and a half months for?

Sure, it could just be a peak, but this is who he was supposed to be and with the velocity trend up for two starts, you have to buy into this with Arizona + Kansas City left on the table. I hope your heart still has a place for Rodón after all this time.


Let’s see how every other SP did Sunday:


Sonny Gray (MIN) @ CWS (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 11 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 81 pitches.

Atta boy Gray. I’m still raising a concerned eyebrow to 70% fastball usage between four-seamers and sinkers as you’re living too much in the fast lane based on how you’ve had your success in the past. And yet, we start him because we have just two starts left and this is just me yelling at clouds. $10 a month for just 2TB?!

Framber Valdez (HOU) @ KC (W) – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 92 pitches.

THE CUTTER HATH RETURNED. Even more than throwing 25 cutters, Valdez threw just 16% sinkers here and EVERYONE REJOICED. I legit don’t understand what took him so long.

Jesús Luzardo (MIA) vs ATL (W) – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks – 17 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 97 pitches.

Hot dang, look at you! Sure, it’s a little maddening to see Luzardo kill it against the elite offenses and then look lost against the Brewers, but this is so dang wonderful to see. His slider was everything as the changeup was incredibly inconsistent, missing in the dirt frequently. Meanwhile, the four-seamer did its thing in the upper third, and Atlanta without Acuña couldn’t do anything about it. He’s going to be so undervalued for next year – he’s just six strikeouts away from 200 with two starts to go.

Hyun Jin Ryu (TOR) vs BOS (ND) – 4.2 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 83 pitches.

Blegh. He got Singled Out and was a little too inefficient to stick around for longer as the Jays are being a little cautious with Ryu as he returns from TJS. He’ll get the Rays twice now and we’re still rolling with it.

Joe Boyle (OAK) vs SD (ND) – 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 58 pitches.

Hey Boyle, I see you, making your MLB debut and hurling 98 mph fastballs, even touching 99.7 mph. I wish I liked your cutter, curve, or slider more than this, but at least you have what looks to be hard-to-hit velocity (12 foul balls add so much haze. Were those preventing balls in play or whiffs? FOULS BALLS, WHY MUST YOU HAUNT US?!) and if there’s a legit secondary or two in there come April, there may be some fun times. Ken Waldichuk came through for the next three frames and his changeup returned for 68% strikes, but he hung it a fair amount with the sweeper and the Padres destroy LHP. The Tigers are up next and I’m curious what happens there. I get a sense the Athletics aren’t letting Waldi go long in games, but if you believe he’ll be finishing the fifth, there’s a sneaky stream to be had there. As for Boyle, we ignore until next year with his low pitch counts ahead.

Nick Martinez (SD) @ OAK (ND) – 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 38% CSW, 40 pitches.

WHY HASN’T HE STARTED MORE. Okay fine, it was the Athletics, but couldn’t you at least have him swap with Pedro Avila so he’d get a Win? If you went with Avila for this lovely matchup, you were rewarded with 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks and a dub. Congrats, I’m so proud of you. Avila pitched well to earn it, though it was a clear peak for the limited opportunity he had here.

Colin Selby (PIT) vs NYY (ND) – 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks – 1 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 20 pitches.

He opened for mediocrity from Andre Jackson, who received a Win. That’s baseball, Suzyn. It was 4.1 IP of 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks, and I’ve never been so blasé about production. It reminds me of my favorite road trip game when growing up: Spot the Indifference. He’s not the one to chase against the Reds in Cincy next.

Jimmy Herget (LAA) vs DET (ND) – 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 42% CSW, 12 pitches.

We saw Kenny Rosenberg go five frames and 5 ER here as a follower and it’s a big ole Womp Womp. Kenny requires his changeup to dominate and a 15% CSW just isn’t gonna cut it. I think we pass against the Twins, but there’s a desperate QS chance there if he’s allowed to start.

Miguel Díaz (DET) @ LAA (ND) – 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks – 2 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 18 pitches.

We saw Joey Wentz follow here, who was a desperate strikeout play and…wait. We actually got seven strikeouts. WE GOT SEVEN STRIKEOUTS. And now he’s going to get Oakland…if he has his cutter and curve working this well again, it could happen. That said, it was still 3 ER in 4.1 innings, y’all.

Shelby Miller (LAD) @ SEA (ND) – 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks – 1 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 16 pitches.

Get out of the way Shelby, Ryan Yarbrough and Gavin Stone each appeared for at least three frames and performed at their peaks. For those trying to steal the Win, we were told Stone would be the bulk guy, but the Fratty Pirate came in first for 4.1 IP and took it home, with seven Ks to boot. You can’t predict baseball. You can elect to consider Yarbrough for the Giants later this week if the Dodgers elect to have an opener again, though.

Gavin Williams (CLE) vs TEX (W) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 31% CSW, 97 pitches.

When Gavin is able to go 25/36 strikes with his breaking balls (~70% strike rate), great things can happen and I think this is today’s Gold Star given the matchup. It wasn’t even his best command of the zone with said breakers + his four-seamer was 1-2 ticks down (likely due to the knee injury scare from last week). With Texas out of the way, it’s Baltimore + Detroit and we’re still chasing it. The Shag Rug is still there, but we’re doing it.

Brandon Woodruff (MIL) vs WSH (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 15 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 106 pitches.

Aces gonna ace. It’s such a good heater. You say this nearly every time. WELL IT IS. Glad to see his changeup go 5/21 whiffs as well, that’s cool.

Patrick Corbin (WSH) @ MIL (ND) – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks – 4 Whiffs, 19% CSW, 88 pitches.

Four whiffs, 19% CSW. Some days, baseball looks down at you and says “alright, fine.”

Dean Kremer (BAL) vs TB (ND) – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 86 pitches.

He didn’t make cutter mistakes over the plate, though he kept missing a little too far gloveside at times. His four-seamer was solid, the sinker snuck over the plate, and voila, there’s your five innings of production. Blame the cutter and changeup for the lower efficiency (maybe a passive-aggressive letter if you must?) and keep it going against Cleveland.

Zack Littell (TB) @ BAL (ND) – 4.2 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 6 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 55 pitches.

He wasn’t able to get his slider down, but hot dang, why are they pulling him with 55 pitches? He had a clean fifth working! He was sitting a tick up on everything! LET THE MAN COOK.

José Quintana (NYM) vs CIN (W) – 6.2 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 3 Whiffs, 20% CSW, 94 pitches.

That’s a Dusty Donut with ten baserunners, but we’ll take it, concluding our relationship with Quintana as he gets two starts ahead against the Phils. It was a good ride, you savvy southpaw.

Nick Pivetta (BOS) @ TOR (ND) – 6.1 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 91 pitches.

That’s a lovely line from Pivietta, who sat 95/96 mph for 48% CSW on his heater with nine whiffs. His command has been a lot better in the second half and I’m all for starting him against the White Sox next time out.

Sean Manaea (SF) @ COL (W) – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 24% CSW, 87 pitches.

I love how Manaea is pulling off the BSB and looking solid in his time as a starter, I just wish his slider and changeup did more than 3/26 whiffs and 22% CSW combined. Oh, and that he didn’t have to face the Dodgers twice now to end the year. That’s actually the issue here. I wonder where he pitches next year and whether he can be a proper Toby.

Ryne Nelson (ARI) vs CHC (ND) – 3.1 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 75 pitches.

Nelson’s slider went 2/15 CSW with a sub 50% strike rate as he was chased out of the game early. Sigh. I wonder what he’ll look like next year – there’s no way he’s going 60% four-seamers in April, right?

Dylan Cease (CWS) vs MIN (L) – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks – 8 Whiffs, 25% CSW, 106 pitches.

Hey, that’s a Bailey Special and you know what, it’s nice to have a quaint start here and there, you know? Just something totally okay and not an extreme for once. Like experience Big Country for a weekend. You wake up on Sunday and think to yourself, “You know, maybe I should do better than 2/35 slider whiffs.” YEAH, MAYBE.

Dakota Hudson (STL) vs PHI (ND) – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks – 9 Whiffs, 26% CSW, 66 pitches.

I still have adoration for Hudson jamming batters endlessly with fastballs and seeing nearly 25% SwStr on his slider is fun, but y’all know better. The ceiling is just too boring.

Jordan Wicks (CHC) @ ARI (L) – 4.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 28% CSW, 97 pitches.

After seeing many starts where Wicks was ultra meticulous, it was strange seeing him dance around the zone here. I actually liked his approach – he spotted four-seamers, cutters, sliders, sinkers, curves, and changeups in the general areas they should be in – but sadly, his changeup wasn’t nearly as sharp as we’ve seen, resulting in a strike rate that hovered around 50% and messed him up. I’m sure this ruined some playoff matchups for some of y’all, in the final game of the day and I feel for you. I’m starting him next weekend against Rockie Road as there wasn’t enough to deter me here.

Brandon Williamson (CIN) @ NYM (L) – 4.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 22% CSW, 79 pitches.

Instead of regaining his velocity, Williamson went in the other direction, losing a bit more, now at 91.8 mph. The changeup was better, sure, but this ain’t it y’all.

Jordan Lyles (KC) vs HOU (L) – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 29% CSW, 95 pitches.

Let’s be honest, this is kinda good considering it’s Lyles against the Astros. Props to him…?

Chris Flexen (COL) vs SF (L) – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks – 14 Whiffs, 30% CSW, 94 pitches.

At least the WHIP is good and you got five strikeouts? Yeah yeah yeah, we know not to start Rockies arms for the rest of the year. Or pretty much at any point. He’s not that bad, though.

Taijuan Walker (PHI) @ STL (ND) – 7.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks – 10 Whiffs, 23% CSW, 109 pitches.

We’re back to 91.8 mph sinkers with a 15% CSW splitter. Cool cool cool, you can stop now. Who, me or Walker? Yes.

Logan Gilbert (SEA) vs LAD (L) – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks – 12 Whiffs, 27% CSW, 86 pitches.

Gilbert’s slider truly has improved in the second half, but his four-seamer has taken such a step back and it’s all kinds of frustrating. Yes, this was the Dodgers n all, but 1/36 fastball whiffs is not the guy we want him to be. No heater, no start against Texas for two.

Charlie Morton (ATL) @ MIA (L) – 4.2 IP, 6 ER, 6 Hits, 5 BBs, 5 Ks – 13 Whiffs, 32% CSW, 98 pitches.

Oh dear. His ERA is still comfortably in the mid-3s while his WHIP is well north of 1.40. Why are you the way you are. Not much you can do but still start him against the Nationals up next. This has been one of the weirdest weeks of pitching all year, I wonder—OH. Duh. It’s H2H playoff time.

Cody Bradford (TEX) @ CLE (L) – 3.0 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks – 7 Whiffs, 33% CSW, 64 pitches.

Oh, so this was three full innings of The Three-First-Named Man. Welp, we had plans to start him anyway, so I guess that happened. Jonathan Hernández followed for 3 ER in three frames and there’s your Sunday.

Game of the Day


Zack Wheeler vs. Kyle Wright – I want Wright to get back into a rhythm and for Wheeler to get his redemption.

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.

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.

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