Waiting For The Elie-Flop

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

I know you want to talk about Elieser Hernandez. I may be in my Brooklyn apartment and far away from you, but I can feel it after his 5.2 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks performance last night against the Phillies. I haven’t been the biggest supporter of Elieser since his call-up and now four starts in, you’re seeing 6+ strikeouts a game, never exceeding 3 ER, and a 1.11 WHIP. What gives, Nick?! Well, a few things. One, he faced the Cards and Phils twice, each, two struggling offenses. Not the best litmus test. Two, his SIERA is 3.93, better than his ERA/FIP/xFIP/SHWIPDEDOO and honestly, I see that number and agree with it. I think he’s fine, but nothing special. His fastball is very susceptible, but he’s armed with a good slider and solid changeup. You won’t see the 6.0 IP, 8 Ks, 1 ER game, but you likely won’t get the terrible blowups either. It’s very Toby-esque with a slight tinge of strikeout upside. I hope he’s the one that sticks around when Caleb Smith returns next week (sorry Jordan Yamamoto, aka Fair Jordan) and I think Elieser is rosterable in 12-teamers for a bit, but I really don’t see this as the game-changing pickup. He will flop in some fashion and quickly turn into the guy you may consider dropping in a few weeks. You can’t pick him up now, you can’t deal him, just enjoy the short ride.

Let’s see how every other SP did Friday:

Matt Carasiti1.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 Hits, 0 BBs, 1 Ks. This is obviously an opener line as Tommy Milone went five frames after Matty and impressed with a 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks line against the Astros. Sure, no 6+ strikeouts like before, but I’m amazed to say Milone holds a 2.95 ERA. It’s kinda crazy.

Lance Lynn8.0 IP, 0 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 10 Ks. It’s getting stupid now as he earned another Gallows Pole with 18 whiffs. Just keep starting Lynn. Don’t think about it. Just do it. DO IT.

John Means 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. That’s a 1.67 ERA across his last five starts and you’re upset. Nick, you really hated on Means and I missed in my league and it hurts. I know, it’s frustrating to watch him succeed and turn away when you had a chance. It’s going to happen. But we’re playing probabilities here and I just don’t see Means being a good bet. That 1.67 ERA? It comes with a 4.44 SIERA. – The HOTEL of 2.6% HR/FB, .257 BABIP, and 86% LOB rate is laughable. So maybe it’s a 3.70 ERA at the end of the day. I just don’t buy the near 25% strikeout rate with his 9% swinging-strike rate and mediocre fastball & slider. The changeup is solid, dont’ get me wrong, and it’s why I can imagine him being a Toby, but I don’t change Tobys. I don’t chase TEEs. I don’t chase a guy who pitches for the Orioles and looks to be going through a wonderful string of luck. Just not for me. I will keep using his name as a joke in other pitchers’ blurbs, though.

Jhoulys Chacin5.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Remember kids, Chacin will do well when Jhoulyst expect it.

Mike Fiers6.2 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. The crazy ride continues as Fiers has returned a Quality Start in each of his last eight games and now holds a 2.39 ERA starting the day of his no-hitter…but with a 5.34 K/9 and 5.42 SIERA. Unreal. So what should we do? It Johns that you should Vargas Rule this and let it fly until he definitively says “yeah, I’m done with this.”

Cole Hamels1.0 IP, 1 ER, 2 Hits, 1 BBs, 1 Ks. Sad news here as Hamels left this game with an oblique injury. He’ll be out for a good while, I imagine. My guess is that Tyler Chatwood benefits in the short term with Adbert Alzolay possibly getting more starts as he could stick after Kyle Hendricks returns. It’s too bad as Hamels really was running away as the Spider-Man of the year.

Eric Lauer4.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. I considered choosing Lauer as yesterday’s Call Boy and this is why I went with Wacha. Not enough strikeout upside and while the ERA is good, that WHIP hurts. It’s just so boring.

Wade Miley6.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 2 Ks. Speaking of boring, this Miley start certainly helped, I just can’t help but see those two strikeouts and think blegh. But hey, you don’t have Miley for the Ks, you have him for the O-Ks. That’s horrible. Yes. Yes it is.

Anibal Sanchez6.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. The cutter has been back since he returned from the IL, allowing him to properly set up that splitty and we’re all stoked about it. Keep riding this.

Shaun Anderson5.2 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Awww, we all wanted Shaun-A to get that quality start, but he instead served you a Philly. Yep, this really is Derek Rodriguez 2.0. Is that a good thing? I guess….? Maybe he does deserve a spot on The List.

Chris Archer4.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Just when you started getting a little excited about Archer, he leaves the game with hip discomfort. Ugh. Hopefully he won’t miss time due to the injury. Maybe Mitch Keller returns and can give us the proper second half we all want out of him.

Ross Detwiler5.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 3 Ks. Wait, Ross still pitches? Yeah, I thought the same thing. The White Sox need a little help so they went with the Deeeets. You don’t want to get these deets.

Sonny Gray6.1 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 1 BBs, 6 Ks. It can be hard to get back on the right track when you’re forced to face the Cubs, but Gray did just that, though he went only 1/10 CSW on sliders. Curveball was a bit better with 19/34 strikes and he got the job done. It wasn’t one of those starts that gets me really excited about Gray now, but this is a step in the right direction.

Daniel Norris5.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Norris left this one both a finger injury and groin cramp. Not good, Bob! So any idea we had of Norris becoming fantasy relevant can be put on the backburner.

Noe Ramirez1.0 IP, 2 ER, 1 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Nah, Noe. Give me the real stuff. Felix Pena followed for 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 2 Hits, 4 BBs, 7 Ks and while we’re happy he finally got a full five frames and seven Ks, that crooked 3 spot is blegh and I’m not sure this deserves your roster spot. I have to think a stream is better.

Sean Reid-Foley5.1 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Whoa, RF is back! I wonder if at some point he’ll be someone to consider as a strikeout stream and I’d think about adding him now in AL-Only leagues. 12-teamers, you can wait as there is too much risk here.

Antonio Senzatela5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 5 BBs, 2 Ks. Senz-A is not worth the risk outside of Coors, let alone at home. Against the Dodgers. Yeah, I’m glad he allowed just 2 ER, not sure lady luck will be around next time.

Mike Soroka6.1 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. Soroka is the true Spider-Man as he doesn’t carry 25%+ strikeout upside but he really is talented at hitting corners, making the ball dance, and keeping the ball off the barrel. Get used to these lines from him often.

Michael Wacha7.0 IP, 2 ER, 6 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. Hey, it worked! Streaming Record: 54-32. Do I think Wacha can be someone to turn to a lot? No! But that’s okay. 

Jose Berrios7.1 IP, 3 ER, 9 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. Just 4/32 CSW from his curveball so how was that changeup…oh. 1/8 CSW. COME ON MAN. Someone wanted me to give a term for Berrios as the ultimate Cherry Bomb and I have to agree with it as his just isn’t the consistent man we want. Nick, he went over seven frames of 3 ER ball with 2 ER coming off a HR in the eighth. I know, I know, Careful Icarus. But his stuff wasn’t nearly as good as we’ve seen and that’s frustrating. He won’t move on The List, jsut get it together Berrios.

Yonny Chirinos6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 5 Ks. Are you happy with a VPQS from Chirinos against the Rangers? Maybe? I guess this is fine.

Jacob deGrom6.0 IP, 3 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 7 Ks. Aces gonna be fine. It’s near VPQS with seven strikeouts and while you want deGrom to win you your week, at least he wasn’t terrible and gave you seven strikeouts. He’s really feeling his slider now – 21/35 for strikes – and that’s a very good thing.

Danny Duffy6.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. 35% CSW is nothing shabby as Duffy’s slider was legit and we might want to start considering Duffy as a streaming option as this was the Jays. Don’t go ham wild, but he should produce more often than not against weak teams.

Merrill Kelly5.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 2 Ks. You know by now. What are the two factors that make for a good Kelly start? 92 mph + curveballs for strikes and whiffs. Well, even against the Giants, if Kelly is throwing just 91 mph with curveballs going 1-9 CSW, you’re gonna have a bad time. Sadly we don’t know when Kelly will have it on a given night so your guess is as good as mine.

Vince Velasquez4.1 IP, 4 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 6 Ks. Velasquez went five shutout frames last time against the Marlins but who cares. He’s still a man you can’t trust and blegh. You know the risks and so do I.

Mike Clevinger1.2 IP, 7 ER, 5 Hits, 3 BBs, 2 Ks. OH COME ON CLEV. This is such a tease. First we get the Rangers game where he explodes and looks phenomenal save for a few mistakes, hits the IL so we have to wait for a proper non-DLH start (but I still started him in both) and then we get the Orioles – this should be fine and amazing! – NAH. It just wasn’t there. Fine. I’m buying low here if anyone is selling. This is just an odd situation, his stuff is still legit as anything. Brush it off, you’ll be happy you did.

Hyun-Jin Ryu4.0 IP, 7 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. I mean I expected some regression, but not all in one game, you know? You guys know the deal – it’s Coors, it’s one start, he wasn’t supposed to be a sub 2.00 ERA guy anyway, etc. – so don’t be silly.


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.


Austin Voth vs. Detroit Tigers – I loved his velocity last time out as it overpowered. The Tigers could get steamrolled by it this weekend.


Tomorrow’s Streamer


Brad Keller vs. Toronto Blue JaysThere’s zilch out there for Sunday, so here’s your best chance for a decent outing. Yep.


Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer


Logan Allen vs. San Francisco Giants – On a day with just six games, I’m happy to have Allen to pick.


Game of the Day 


Brenden McKay – IT’S TIME Y’ALL. I’ll be doing some sort of breakdown, likely of the Twitter variety. Come hang with me.


(Photo by Gregory Fisher/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.

3 responses to “Waiting For The Elie-Flop”

  1. Perfect Game says:

    Corbin or Clevinger ROS for counting stats (QS, K) and ratios? I own both and thinking of trading one for a bat.

  2. TheKraken says:

    Berrios is good for a whip around 1.1, k an inning and is durable. Not sure what consistency you are looking for. I think you are hunting for elite ratios and maybe he doesnt do that but if you are on a start limit and value innings his consistency is close to elite.

    • hscer says:

      Yeah, I think that’s where this was going. He feels like he has top 5-10 potential, but we’re having to settle for top 20. (FTR, I think I was the one who asked for a name for the #1 CB after JB’s 15-0 ND against Seattle.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Account / Login