Thursday, April 21, 2016


Chris Sale:  7 IP 2 H 0 ER 0 BB 3 K with an ERA of 1.80.  Now that Cliff Lee is off into retirement, we can say that Chris Sale engineers the most consistently dominant pitching lines this side of Clayton Kershaw.  What is interesting here is that he did this one without his customary nuclear strikeout rates. 

Garrett Richards:  6.1 IP 4 H 1 ER 4 BB 6 K with an ERA of 3.00.  It is starting to look more and more like the terrific first half 2014 performance from Richards who was pitching like an ace at the time is a bit of an outlier since he has not gotten back to that level both last season and so far in 2015.  Very good pitcher no doubt but his career-long inconsistency is back but not as pronounced as it was during his earlier years. 

Trevor Story:  0/3 while hitting .274.  Story's average continues to plummet.  Hope you sold high on him when we told you which was at the end of the opening week of the season.  His value was never going to be higher and now you will get about 75 on the dollar. 

Jay Bruce:  2/4 with his 4th HR while hitting .293.  I won't even begin to go crazy here until we are in the middle of May with Bruce still toting this average.

Raisel Iglesias:  6.2 IP 6 H 2 ER 1 BB 8 K with an ERA of 3.09.  This is one guy I don't own stock in that I wished to hell I did.  Iglesias is now averaging a firm K/IP going back to his 2015.  The power arm is completely legitimate.

*****Both Tony Cingrani and Blake Wood blew up in relief for the Reds which means the guy we profiled earlier in the day Wednesday in the form of Caleb Cottham is the guy to own for future saves after J.J. Hoover got the kick to the curb.*****

Anthony Rizzo:  2/4 with his 4th HR while hitting .189.  I hope your not worried about the average.  If you are please stop and instead worry about why in the hell you invested in Adam Wainwright this season.  Or Russell Martin.  Or held onto Trevor Story. 

Matt Holliday:  1/4 with his third HR while hitting .231.  The average continues to sink but it is nice to see that Holliday continues to hold onto his moderate power when there as the chance it will sail over the cliff. 

Carlos Martinez:  7 IP 3 H 1 ER 3 BB 5 K with an ERA of 2.70.  Another start down and about 25 more to get through when it comes to the health of Martinez' shoulder. 

Tajuan Walker:  6 IP 3 H 0 ER 0 BB 6 K with an ERA of 1.50.  Walker is another one of those young hard-throwing pitchers who had some major home run and control issues but seems to be working that out to great success.  A start like this really gets the excitement juices flowing that Walker is ready to firmly take that next step to SP 2 status.  His value has dimmed since he first came up with much fanfare as the next Felix Hernandez but the post-hype sleeper tier is also a very profitable place which is where he is at.

Danny Salazar:  7 IP 3 H 2 ER 3 BB 7 K with an ERA of 1.47.  One only has to look at Salazar to see the blockbuster effects of development.  2014 had Salazar go down as a huge bust that got sent back to the minors due to utterly horrendous control.  2015 saw that control improved immensely which saw Salazar turn into an ace almost overnight.  Remember Clayton Kershaw had terrible control when he first came up to and look at him now.

Matt Kemp:  2/4 with his 5th HR while hitting .268.  I do appreciate the power that Kemp still brings but he is pretty darn boring now without the steals. 

Drew Pomeranz:  6.2 IP 4 H 0 ER 3 BB 10 K with an ERA of 2.04.  Well there you go.  I own stock in Pomeranz everywhere and so would you if you read that deep sleeper post we did on him.  The arm has always had a lot of juice attached to it but injuries always seemed to hold Pomeranz back.  Then he ends up in golden Petco Park and all of a sudden he has 25 K's in just 17.2 innings.  Yup.

Wellington Castillo:  1/4 with his third HR while hitting .213.  This is why you never need to draft catchers early.  Guys like this show up every season which allows you to stock up elsewhere and WIN.

Zack Greinke:  6.2 IP 6 H 1 ER 1 BB 7 K with an ERA of 5.25.  Greinke has been much better the last two times out after his early struggles and generally he was always going to be just fine.  I say generally as Greinke will be more like a 3.00 ERA guy now in Chase Field then the outlier numbers he had in 2015 in L.A.

Madison Bumgarner:  7 IP 5 H 2 ER 1 BB 8 K with an ERA of 3.91.  Had no interest or concern about the overall numbers in this start but instead went right to the walks column considering how much Bumgarner fought his stuff this spring and into the early season.  All seems well here and now that we are past his early April struggles, the ace numbers will flow like beer at Octoberfest. 

Tyler White:  1/4 with his 5th HR while hitting .340.  While Trevor Story is starting to go in the crapper in terms of his average and contact rate, White continues to excel.  Guys like White who don't strike out have a much better chance of sustaining early success which makes him a pretty stable commodity despite the lack of experience.  I do think the power will ebb sine he was just optimally a 20-home run guy in the minors but White seems here to stay as the new Eric Hosmer.
Rougned Odor:  1/4 with his second HR while hitting .250.  Once again Odor is quiet to start a season but he is picking up a home run or a steal here and there to hold off on chorus concerns. 

Cole Hamels:  6.2 IP 5 H 1 ER 3 BB 7 K with an ERA of 2.52.  Crazy game this fantasy baseball.  Who knew it would take leaving the NL and going to one of the toughest places to pitch in the AL for Hamels to finally avoid his April blues. 

Domingo Santana:  2/4 with his second HR while hitting .259.  Santana has pretty much done what was expected:  a bit of power, an shaky batting average due to strikeouts.  Nice when that happens.

Chris Carter:  2/5 with his 4th HR while hitting .261.  It is nearing the end of April and Carter is hitting over .250.  He seems to do well on teams with zero expectations as he bombed on the playoff Houston Astros a year ago.  Hey ride the power when it is there.

Carlos Beltran:  1/4 with his 4th HR while hitting .327.  Beltran is like the only Yankee that is hitting and at 39 it goes to show you how quietly a tremendous player he has been throughout his career.  Hall of Famer yes.  Outfielder 3 absolutely. 

Kendall Graveman:  6.1 IP 3 H 1 ER 3 BB 8 K with an ERA of 2.04.  Graveman got his head beat in all of last season so this is an anomaly.  Amazing to say that for maybe the first time I have to use the quote Gravemen did well "because it came against the listless Yankees." 

Sean Doolittle:  scoreless ninth for his second save with an ERA of 4.70.  No controversy here....YET! as Ryan Madson got the night off.  Just watch though as managers sometimes obsess with going back to an original incumbent. 

Josh Donaldson:  1/5 with his sixth HR while hitting .286.  Wish I had him.  So do you.  And you too.

Michael Taylor:  1/4 with his second HR while hitting .185.  Taylor is an example of a guy with all the athletic gifts in the world but one of those is not purely hitting the baseball. 

Jonathan Papelbon:  scoreless ninth for his sixth save with an ERA of 4.05.  Good bounce back from Papelbon after his ugly blown save a few days ago.  Like expected from the ageless star.