The McKay Owed

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

Last night was the final reckoning of Brendan McKay, who had a favorable matchup against the Mariners but was completely lost on the hill, getting pulled with just six outs under his belt and leaving with 2.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 Hits, 3 BBs and 1 K. It was a nightmare. Horrible and depressing. All of the bad stuff. So bad that he’s since been demoted to the minors. So do we hold now? No, you don’t. I really like McKay’s future. I think his fastball and cutter set a great tone to make batters uncomfortable in the box with curveballs that miss bats under the zone when those two pitches are established. It’s the makings of an arm that should carve up lineups consistently. He flashed this in his first few starts, then it disappeared. It’s possible he does find his way in the minors quickly and returns by the end of the year, but for now, you’re better off making sure you make it to the end strong. 

Don’t let this season ruin your idea of McKay for 2020, however. I’m definitely taking McKay in the final rounds in March for those scared to touch him. His raw talent is way too good to let this month bring his stock massively down.

Let’s see how every other SP did Monday:

Dakota Hudson6.2 IP, 0 ER, 0 Hits, 4 BBs, 7 Ks. Some are all about Hudson now after two straight 6+ IP starts of 0 ER. I’d approach with caution. It’s a 4.05 ERA and 5.16 SIERA across his last nine starts with an IPS just over 5 in that time, earning fewer than six strikeouts in 67% of them. Hudson wants to be a Toby and I don’t believe that these two starts against the Royals and Brewers truly elevate him to that level. Not to mention, he’s carrying a 12% walk rate and 1.50 WHIP along the way. It just doesn’t seem like a better play over your standard streamer once or twice a week.

Joe Ross3.1 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. I’m not sure what to do here. Ross certainly didn’t hurt your team as he left in the fourth following a comebacker to the leg, but is this enough of a game to grant myself a streaming victory? I’m just going to not update it. Streaming Record: 81-53. I imagine he’ll get his next start against the Cubs and…that’s too bad. I’m not in on that one.

Zac Gallen6.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 6 BBs, 8 Ks. It was a stressful fourth frame, as Gallen lost his command in a heartbeat and walked in a run, but otherwise the man was incredibly sharp against the Rockies, boasting 35/103 CSW and a variety of secondary pitches complement his heater. I’m all aboard the Gallen train the rest of the way and certainly running him out there against the Brewers next.

Eric Lauer4.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Lauer needed 86 pitches to escape four frames with just one earned run. I’m so proud. I think. I honestly don’t know. I don’t like not knowing. Me neither, random fella. Me neither.

Jorge Lopez5.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. Sure, whatever JorLo. We’re not going to trust you for a looooong time, so do whatever you like.

Trevor Bauer7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 11 Ks. Aces gonna ace. I had no choice but to push Bauer to the end of Tier 2 yesterday given his unreal inconsistency, but this is why he’s still Top 20. Here’s to hoping it’s a whole lot more of this than nightmares in the final weeks.

Zach Davies5.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. It’s super boring against the Cardinals and we were hoping for at least a Quality Start here. But fine, it didn’t hurt us as we brace ourselves for his next start against Arizona. Arizona? Are we really scared about Arizona? When it’s Davies, yes. Yes we are.

Chi Chi Gonzalez6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. Sure, Chi Chi, you do you man. I don’t buy your 24/94 CSW or the fact you hold a 13% strikeout rate for the year. Yeah.

John Means 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Means got the Royals and took advantage of it. Yes, this line is “taking advantage of it.” Man, this day was filled with blegh arms who mostly gave us incredibly boring lines. WHEN DO THE COOL KIDS GET HERE?! I really wouldn’t like rostering Means. Not enough upside and that floor is horrid. HORRID, I SAY.

Ivan Nova5.1 IP, 2 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. Johnny ran downstairs with hope in his eyes as his mother stood there, sullen. No Johnny, no Super Nova today. It was a sad day.

Marco Gonzales5.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Marco pitched kinda well here, but he didn’t get all the results he wanted, with few bad chases on his changeup—3/29 whiffs—though I like his high “heat” + low cutters/changeup approach here. Maybe he’s a Toby now. Maybe.

Wade Miley5.2 IP, 3 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 8 Ks. It’s a Philly and one out away from a VVPQS…but it came with eight strikeouts and a Win, even collecting 19 whiffs for a Gallows Pole and 35/107 CSW. What more do you want from Miley? Better ratios, obviously. Okay, okay, but be happy with this. The idea that Miley has been a steady producer all year is kinda nuts, you know.

Edwin Jackson5.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 4 BBs, 6 Ks. Nothing like an EJax start to remind you that, hey, life could be worse.

Dillon Peters4.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. I want to be more interested in Peters, but when his changeup isn’t working—like this game—things get bad. Fast. Apparently his middle name is Isaac as When I DIP, he DIPs just like that. But seriously, don’t own Peters.

Kyle Gibson6.2 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. It’s a lovely WHIP but terrible ERA as Gibson couldn’t keep his LOB rate up. Only seven whiffs is a bit disappointing as well, as he elected to hold off on his excellent slider here. Not sure why he threw just eight on the day, but even with this disappointment against the ChiSox, you should be holding for the Tigers next.

Kolby Allard5.0 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Bleeggggh. I’m still waiting for Allard to get going with his curveball or changeup, as the current 92/93 heater with a decent cutter just isn’t enough. Hold out here.

Trevor Williams2.0 IP, 6 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 1 Ks. And we’re still staying oh-so-far away from T-dubs. More like T-ells if you know what I mean.


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.


Elieser Hernandez vs Atlanta BravesAll the interesting sub 20% arms have horrid matchups, so I’ll go with Elieser, who could survive the Braves after back-to-back 7 K games.


Tomorrow’s Streamer


Mike Montgomery vs. Baltimore Orioles – The man is feeling his secondary stuff right now. You want him against the O’s. I’d also go with Adrian Houser as he faces the Cardinals. These two are clearly attached at the hip right now.


Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer


Asher Wojciechowski vs. Tampa Bay Rays – Civale and Anibal are both over 20% and there’s nothing else to chase here save for Sandy Alcantara against the Braves. I’ll chase Woj’s curveball instead of Sandy’s command. Only because I have to.


Game of the Day


Shane Bieber vs. New York Mets – Let’s see if the Biebs can continue being amazing as Matz tries to ride his home field magic.


(Photo by Cliff Welch/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.

One response to “The McKay Owed”

  1. Facenda says:

    Yesterday you had McKay ranked #39 and in the same tier as Soroka. Things sure change fast around here!

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