Tailor Wade

Nick Pollack reviews every single starting pitcher's performances from Wednesday's games.

Here’s something I didn’t expect to see. After last night’s line of 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 9 Ks, not only does Wade Miley hold an impressive 3.25 ERA and 1.14 WHIP this year, but he now has 17 Ks in his last two starts with 7+ in three of his last five. What. This is Miley, the man who held a 15% strikeout rate last season. Last night the man had a ridiculous 39/102 CSW, earning sixteen whiffs via 5/26 on changeups, 3/16 on curveballs, and even 6/33 on cutters. This is wild. He’s increased his changeup and curveball usage lately, though I’m not totally sold that the curveball is really the impetus here – just a 10% swinging-strike rate this year. However, his changeup is raising an eyebrow with a sudden 19% swinging-strike rate after just a ~13% clip in previous seasons. He featured the pitch 26%+ last night despite averaging under 15% for the season. There may be something there, I’m not truly buying into that, though add in the Win potential (five thus far!) and his solid ratios, any suggestion that Miley can be a ~22% strikeout arm is just icing on the cake. He’s apparently owned in just 30% of leagues so those that have questionable arms at the back of your staff, maybe consider making the swap for Miley with the Mariners now in his crosshairs.

Let’s see how every other SP did Wednesday:

Steven Brault5.1 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Please don’t. Seriously. He hasn’t eclipsed six frames, his ERA is 5.87 on the year for a very good reason, his walk rate is chilling at 13%, and it’s nobody’s Brault but yours if you roster him.

Jose Leclerc1.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks. He opened for Drew Smylywho went 5.0 IP, 7 ER, blah blah blah. You don’t need the rest after that.

James Paxton4.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. Aces gonna ace. Yes I’m giving him that label after just four innings, removed as it was his first start back from the IL – not a DLH (yes DLH!) situation given his ability.

Anibal Sanchez6.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. The dude had a perfecto going in the sixth frame, denying the laws of the DLH, featuring the cutter of old. Not the worst streaming option next week against the ChiSox, but I don’t want to put a whole lot of faith in Anibal again.

Griffin Canning6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. Can we all be happy that we finally saw Canning go six frames? It may surprise you that he has a 3.06 ERA and 26% K rate thus far with a sub 1.00 WHIP, but there it is, even beating down a solid A’s squad last night. The only negative here is the 24/91 CSW is a bit meh, with just 4 whiffs on 41 sliders & curveballs. The deuce wasn’t really there and the slide piece had moments, but wasn’t as devastating as we’ve seen. Still, the four-seamer was up and effective and that’s so good to see.

Kyle Hendricks8.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 7 Ks. Hendricks faced the Astros and it didn’t matter as he cruised through eight frames. Now it’s a 3.09 ERA, 21% K rate, 6.67 IPS, and 1.11 WHIP. In other words, exactly what you wanted when you drafted him.

Pablo Lopez6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. So we’re just going to start PabLo at home and every other start, right? Okay, cool. 21/89 CSW and just eight whiffs does little for me to believe in a big comeback coming – just 3/37 whiffs across changeups and curveballs. Womp womp.

John Means 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. This is why we still talk about Johnny Boy, but don’t get suckered in. He’s just a streaming and nothing more, sorry y’all. You just don’t know if his changeup can mask his weak fastball on a given night. Vargas Rule it if you like – 9 ER in his last five starts total – but I think you’re going to get burned pretty soon. 

Aaron Nola7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 8 Ks. NICK! IS THIS THE START?! Kinda? 36/102 CSW with decent fastballs and one of the better changeup days I’ve seen from Nola this year. Not totally there but he’s pulling himself out of the fourth tier of starters now. Much more than I can say about Thor.

Madison Bumgarner6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. This is fine, but I wanted more from Bummy against the Marlins. I’ve seen a lot of explanations about Bumgarner’s season thus far – “His fastball is back!” is a popular one – and honestly, it’s his cutter/fastball working well, though he’s performing a delicate dance as his curveball still ain’t what it used to be. It’s just those two offerings and if either aren’t there one night, he’s gonna have a bad time. That’s fine – it’s not a coin flip, after all – just don’t consider Bumgarner like a Top 20 arm or anything. I almost want to call him Spider-Man as the master Toby, but I think he’s separated himself from that label enough with his 24% strikeout rate.

Ryan Carpenter5.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Just like the Carpenter of old, his ratios will rise again.

Liam Hendriks1.0 IP, 2 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks. This was an opening for Daniel Mengden whose 4.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks line ain’t so bad. I’m still far away from relying on him in 12-teamers, but I understand deep leagues considering Mengden. You could do worse.

Blake Snell6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Aces gonna ace. It’s not your overwhelming, I-Just-Won-My-Week start, but it’s fine.

Genesis Cabrera3.2 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. I wanted to label him a Cup of Schmo, but when a lefty is sporting 97/98 with a decent hook and changeup and I can’t help but be a bit intrigued. He’s a bit too raw for me to roll out there with confidence, but this is a Cherry Bomb in the making if he gets more time in the rotation – the Cardinals can skip his spot next week. Not a pickup, just monitor it.

Anthony DeSclafani5.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Ehhhhh, maybe I could call this a win if he got that extra out for a VPQS, but this just doesn’t help you at all. Streaming Record: 37-23. If Tony Disco can’t handle the Pirates, who can you trust him against?

Jeff Hoffman5.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Cool to six strikeouts, but we’re oh-so-far away from rostering Hoffman. Just don’t.

Wade LeBlanc5.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. That’s cool Wade, there’s a reason you’re LeBlanc and not Perry or Aniston.

Noah Syndergaard6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Alright, what do we have today. A VPQS is kinda a standard affair but…wait. 20 whiffs?! Ohhh, 116 pitches – 37/116 CSW for a 32% CSW rate – with a ton of changeups and sinkers. Ehhhhh, at least he had 6/11 CSW on sliders, and he’s putting four-seamers where I want him too…okay I’m a little encouraged. Better fastballs this time and I want to see more from his breakers, but this isn’t terrible. He wasn’t as lost as before. Give this one time, I’d be shocked if his second half isn’t the one of old.

Trent Thornton4.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 5 Ks. Thornton did well against the Padres and the Rays are a much stronger offense. This is why he’s so available in leagues and just use him as a strikeout upside streamer, nothing more.

Chris Paddack5.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Paddack’s changeup was pretty blegh in this one, leading to mistake pitches that were sent out of the yard + his four-seamer was surprisingly jumped on as well despite not the worst locations. It’s too bad he didn’t get the Jays / Marlins instead across the last week, but so it goes. Keep on keepin’ on.

Robbie Ray4.2 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 4 BBs, 6 Ks. The Chocolate Box – you never know what you’re going to get from Ray – wasn’t the sweet man we hope to see often as he endured Coors. Honestly, Ray is the kind of arm that can survive Colorado if he’s on, but he wasn’t and, well, this is what we got. Womp womp. Keep starting him, he’ll help more than hurt.

Glenn Sparkman1.0 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 0 Ks. While Sparkman was as good of an opener as me with wine, Jorge Lopez was surprising after – 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. Those Ks are shocking and in no way am I putting stock in this, but I’ll celebrate this Birthday Party with you.

Walker Buehler5.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. Buehler, no. He got the strikes he wanted from cutters – 17/20 – but his four-seamer wasn’t nearly as effective as we’ve seen it. Meanwhile, his slider is meh – 3/12 CSW – and curveball is still figuring it out, though 5/20 whiffs are fine. He’s getting there, I expect the four-seamer to be fine moving forward so don’t fret.

Reynaldo Lopez5.2 IP, 5 ER, 12 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. It was a wet rain. The man in front of me had seen better days, defeated wearing a tan trenchcoat turned brown by the last five minutes. His head turned up as he heard the clink of the quarter leaving my hand, turning over and over in the air. It fell back on my palm, disappearing under my clenched fingers after a moment of relaxation. “Well?” the man asked, anxiously. I tilted my head up to lock eyes with my old friend. “Not today.”

Shane Bieber5.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. I know the Sawx are a strong offense, but seriously Bieber? Three longballs? I don’t want to call him a Cherry Bomb, but can you not? Cool, thanks. I wouldn’t change anything based on this outing.

Ryan Weber4.0 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. A Weber getting grilled? YOU DON’T SAY.

Kevin Gausman1.0 IP, 8 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks. You know how Gausman normally goes ultra arm-side with heat and splitters? Yeah, we didn’t get that today and it was terrible. Womp womp. I think we can brush this one off and move on.


Today’s Streamer


For those unaware, I’m forced to make my Streamer picks under the condition of sub 20% owned in Fantasy Pros’ consolidated ownership rates.


Chase Anderson vs. Pittsburgh Pirates – Pomeranz and Alcantara are facing off and that just seems so risky on both sides. But so is this. True, not as poor of a floor, though.


Tomorrow’s Streamer


Tyler Mahle vs. Washington Nationals – It’s an easier matchup for Mahle who still has the upside to kill it on a given day.


Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer


Lance Lynn vs. Kansas City Royals – The strikeouts have been flowing and the Royals have been wildly susceptible to the way of the K.


Game of the Day


Joe Musgrove vs. Milwaukee Brewers – I’m curious if Musgrove can turn it around in major test against the Brewers.


(Photo by Juan DeLeon/Icon Sportswire)

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.

15 responses to “Tailor Wade”

  1. Clarence says:

    Any other suggestions for Saturday? Lynn is owned.

    • Nick Pollack says:

      Pretty blegh day.

      Maybe take a chance on Tommy Milone continuing his K streak against the Angels, or Jose Urena cruising through the Padres.

  2. Alex says:

    On the Thor front, he was getting ahead early and often with his changeup/curve and then continually trying to jam batters up with the high heat (the Dodgers were crushing it). I guess what I’m trying to ask is, if he doesn’t have the slide-piece, what is his put-away pitch?

    ps-Thank you so much for the daily content, it’s fantastic!

  3. Mike says:

    I’m in a 10 team mixed yahoo H2H redraft league.

    6 out of 10 teams make the playoffs, and I know my team will get in. I want to make sure that I have a strong team at the end of the season.

    I had to cut Taillion earlier b/c I had too many people on the DL,

    Should I pick up one or more of the following players : Taillion, Musgrove, Strahm, Skaggs, Sonny Gray, Wade Miley, Nick Pivetta, Jimmy Neslon, or Alex Reyes to strengthen my pitching staff for later in the year? If so, who should I drop?

    My team:

    C : Jorge Alfaro (C)
    1B: Pete Alonso (1B)
    2B: Jonathan Villar (2B, SS)?
    3B: Nolan Aren?ado? (3B)
    SS: Javier Baez(2B, 3B, SS)
    OF: Franmil Reyes (OF)
    OF: Rhys Hoskins (1B, OF)
    OF: Austin Meadows (OF)
    UTIL: Austin Riley (3B)
    Bench: Domingo Santana (?OF)
    Bench: Matt Carpenter (1B, 2B, 3B)
    Bench: Hunter Dozier (1B, 3B)

    DL: Giancarlo Stanton (OF)


    James Paxton
    Martin Perez
    Franie Montas
    Rich Hill
    Mike Foltynewicz
    Mike Soroka
    Chris Paddack
    Caleb Smith

    DL: Like Weaver
    DL: Tyler Glasnow

    Felipe Vazquez
    Wade Davis (on DL, but on my bench now b/c I only have 3 DL spots)
    Ken Giles

    • Orange WHIPs says:

      It’s a waste of time for a publication to answer a question where they give advice to such an incredibly specific situation that it can only be helpful to you. The questions should be more generally phrased such that the answers could be helpful to anyone in a similar situation.

      Also the size of this Q constitutes spam.

    • Eric says:

      Dude, come on. Imagine if everyone asked these individualized questions about their teams.. Take the free, thorough analysis and use it be manage your team. What’s the point of even playing fantasy if you’re just gonna have others work to tell you what to do.

  4. Frankie says:

    Gausman’s start provided me the opportunity to RAGE DROP him. I’m afraid of his HH rate climbing to where it was last year (40%) and more outings like this one where he simply did not have it, (and frankly looked as if he didn’t care.) His barrel rate is also an outlier this season. I wouldn’t be surprised to see it double this summer. And I want no part of it.
    At best, Gausman is a last tier guy and I added Alex Reyes in his place because at least there is upside there down the road.
    Yeah, Gausman is DTM.

  5. Sean says:

    Any thoughts on Devin Smeltzer from the Twins last night? He came up and threw a 6IP shutout with only 3 baserunners and 7Ks against a good Brewers team.

  6. Brighton says:

    I think the part that annoyed me most about the Beiber start was it looked like 2/3 Home Runs were off his Fastball. I was like cmon Biebs, you know you can’t throw that pitch there.

    • Nick Pollack says:

      That has been his problem in the past – he’d throw hittable heaters and get burned for it. He’s looked better so far this year, here’s to hoping it’s not a relapse!

  7. Ionescorhino says:

    I traded Soroka for Willson Contreras and Eflin. My catcher was Danny Jansen (yeah). Hated getting rid of Soroka. Just need confirmation I did the right thing.

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