Tales From Lesteryear

It’s Wednesday during the final week of the regular season, which means unless you’re CC Sabathia in 2008, today is first day of final starts from pitchers. The numbers are...

It’s Wednesday during the final week of the regular season, which means unless you’re CC Sabathia in 2008, today is first day of final starts from pitchers. The numbers are all in the books now and we can start reflecting on what went wrong, what went right, and what we simply don’t care about. A highly discussed character entering the season was Jon Lester as he began his tenure for the playoff bound Chicago Cubs. Some saw him as a Top 10 guy, others near #15, but never outside the Top 20. After ending the season on high note with a line of 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 9 Ks, Lester finished with a 3.34 ERA, 9.09 K/9, 2.06 BB/9, and a 1.12 WHIP. Pretty steady numbers even if the trip felt like I was riding on Peter Griffin’s lumps. I ranked him at #15 pre-season (really #13 given Yu Darvish and Adam Wainwright going down), and I see myself putting him right around there next year, maybe a tick or two closer to #20.

Let’s see what every other SP did yesterday:


Kevin Gausman – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 10 Ks. Gaus is going to be talked about a lot before next year’s drafts – I’d bet my bottom dollar, you know the one I’ve been sitting on for like an hour – and I doubt I’ll have a different opinion than I do now: I don’t see Gausman as a top 50 starter. His secondary pitches are not consistent enough for me to ride through the year, and while he has some fantastic upside when it does happen, I need a little more comfort in a given night if I’m going to trust him on my roster in standard leagues.

Marcus Stroman – 8.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. Now here’s a guy I want everywhere next season, and I’m a little sad that he performed this well before season’s end. I see him sporting Top 20 upside – maybe even Top 15 – but it’ll be a bit tough in the AL East environment. Thankfully for him, he never has to face the Jays…

Tyler Lyons – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. I labelled Lyons as a lottery ticket in the pre-season as his spot inside the Cardinals rotation was far from concrete. Thing is, Lyons sports solid K upside without a horrendous walk rate, and if he finds a way to get steady innings next year he could provide value as a streamer or even as a very late pick in your drafts. Not likely though, given how much talent in hanging out in St. Louis these days. It’s not fair.

Kyle Gibson – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks. With 18 games played today, you’d think I’d be smaller in player blurbs today. NOPE. GO BIG OR GO HOME. I’ve been ignoring Gibson all season and for good reason. He sits near a 4.00 ERA and has a K rate under 6.50 per 9. He’s super boring and unreliable and unless you’re into that – you’re sick masochist if you are – just keep ignoring him next season.

Jose Quintana – 9.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. It wasn’t a sexy year from Quintana, but he was helpful and enjoyed having him around. Yes, we friendzoned him pretty badly and he’s just going to have to deal with it. You got me a car? Awww I have the best friend ever!

Cody Anderson – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. Cody is a trap. Plain and simple. He has an ERA than will make people actually draft him next year, and for what? Hoping that his 3.20 ERA sticks around despite over a full point different in both his FIP and xFIP? His K rate is atrocious (4.48 K/9, only .05 points higher than his 4.43 xFIP) and his WHIP isn’t stellar enough to insist he’s a rate specialist. I wouldn’t be shocked if next year he posts a 4.00+ ERA and people question why they liked him like seeing your high school crush during the 20 year reunion. Dayum, is she wearing a Jasmine Disney princess t-shirt right now? You’re 43, that’s not okay.

Drew Smyly – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs, 8 Ks. OurCall Boy was just as we like them. No stress success. Hard not to like Smyly for next year, though I do see him getting a large SLEEPER tag on him that will suddenly make him overrated. His K rate will not be near 10.00 per 9 next season and if you’re spending a Top 100 pick at the end of the day, you’ve lost all the value you were supposed to get drafting Smyly. But hey, there’s plenty of time before then for that not to happen.

R.A. Dickey – 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. Dickey told me he had a pair of Devin Townsend tickets for me waiting at will call. In reality, he got me tickets for Shmevin Schmownsend. Don’t trust a knuckleballer.

Garrett Richards – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 7 Ks. Some are going to tell you that Richards is primed for a breakout 2016 campaign. Those people will not include me. I’m not saying he’s going to flop like Terra – I see him around #30 or so – but if you believe I’m taking him near pick 100 with his volatile nature and poor walk rate then you best hone your skills at reading people cause it’s pretty bad right now. Best sentence ever.

Andrew Cashner – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. Through the first 5 innings, Cash allowed 0 ER on 5 Hits and 1 BB. Then he allows the first five batters to get on base in the sixth, and ends with the clunker of a line you see here. That’s so freakin’ Andrew. Should have Cashed Out.

Zach Davies – 7.0 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Dang Davies, this is pretty sweet. Dang Davies, you throw a Fastball slower than Chris Archer’s Slider. :(

Mike Leake – 9.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. Ummm what. He got 26 of his 27 outs via the BABIP gods whilst allowing only 3 hits. He was 26 of 29 with balls in play. Yeah. YEAH.

Williams Perez – 6.0 IP, 0 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Sir W is trying to win your vote for the draft next season, but then he realized that his stance on global warming is non-existant. Step up your game buddy.

Chad Bettis – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 6 Ks. Bettis has limited upside, pitches his home games at Coors Field, and doesn’t deserve a spot on your team. This should be the blurb for every Colorado starter.

Chase Anderson – 5.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Chase what matters. A pitcher not named Chase.

Gerrit Cole – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. What’s odd about Cole is that he never really dominated like the other pitchers in his class. He didn’t have big strikeout games like Archer or deGrom, didn’t consistently post shutout performances like Arrieta or Greinke, and didn’t have the ace-like production of Bumgarner or Price, but he still had one incredible year for owners. Not entirely sure where I’ll place him next season yet, but it’ll be around #10.

Tony Zych – 2.2 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. He’s pitched as a middle reliever all his career, but had a spot start out of the blue (Felix, Paxton, and Walker are donezo for the year) and did fine. He has strikeout ability, but it came as a reliever and I don’t expect the Mariners to turn to Zych next season. Just a

Edinson Volquez – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. This feels like one of the better starts from Volquez and it came with a 1.67 WHIP. Yup.

Jordan Zimmermann – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks. Instead of building upon 2014’s success, JZ reverted back to his old self and didn’t do a whole lot owners this season. He’s most likely out of the NL Easy next season as he heads to free agency, and his stock will only decline.

Yovani Gallardo – 5.1 IP, 2 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Still don’t like you YoGa. Especially Bikram, oh lord I hated that.

Mike Bolsinger – 3.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. He got batters out by way of the K 70% of the time, it didn’t really work out in the end. If he has a secure spot in the rotation next year, I like Bolsinger as a streamer and possible late add for a deep 12 teamer. Nothing more, though.

Barry Zito – 4.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 2 Ks. It was a fun revival for all and I’m impressed that he only allowed 2 ER in 4 innings. Welp, back to work for the rest of us.

Logan Verrett – 4.1 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks. Alright, I guess the love for Verrett was premature after all. He shouldn’t be part of the rotation next year with Wheeler back and Matz fully in the picture – not to mention that the Mets should re-sign Colon because that was one of the most entertaining years ever.

Masahiro Tanaka – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. After all of the stigma surrounding Tanaka this season, he still made 24 starts and posted an ERA under 3.50 with a solid K rate and elite WHIP. Sure, it wasn’t the first half of 2014 repeated and we’ll probably have the same exact injury concerns heading into next season, but it makes you think…which I know is a really dumb phrase but shut up I’m going to use it anyway.

Anthony DeSclafani – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. I expect more of the same party next year.

Jarred Cosart – 4.2 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks. Cosart isn’t someone you want. Seriously.

Wade Miley – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 9 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. This is why you wade, not swim with Miley.

Scott Kazmir – 4.1 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. He was doing well until he imploded in the fifth inning. Kaz has been very shaky in the second half and makes me wonder if I can trust him to still be on top of his game next season. I’ll most likely be looking elsewhere.

Alec Asher – 0.2 IP, 5 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 0 Ks. We knew he wasn’t good, but at least now he gets to relate to Felix. Yay…

Miguel Gonzalez – 3.2 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Miguel…no.

Michael Wacha – 4.0 IP, 6 ER, 4 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks. Awwww, but I wanted Wacha to be overrated next year! Hopefully this won’t make a big difference.

Carlos Carrasco – 3.0 IP, 5 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Beautiful, just what we needed to keep that draft stock low enough to grab him next year. Thanks bud!

Charlie Morton – 2.0 IP, 5 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks. I wouldn’t be shocked if he had a decent run at some point next season and everyone starts wondering if they should pick him up. I don’t see him being a year long entity, and I’ll be cautious to roll with him at all next year.

Mike Pelfrey – 1.2 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks. Nope nope nope.

Matt Boyd – 2.2 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. It’s going to be a long time before I can endorse Boyd. He has some decent stuff, but it’s way too raw at the moment.

Today’s Streamer

Patrick Corbin vs. Colorado RockiesI’m not entirely sure how Corbin is owned in under 40% of leagues, so take advantage as he gets a solid matchup against the Rockies outside Coors.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Chris Heston vs. Colorado RockiesRockies outside of Coors is always a good matchup and Heston can pull off the good stream like that cool Maine water.

Game of the Day

Rich Hill vs. New York YankeesBecause I want to see if he can go four straight double digit strikeout games. Seriously, that would be absurd.

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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