May 2011

Pitch or Ditch for Wednesday, June 1 + Home Run Barrage Note

Before we get to Pitch or Ditch, a few interesting notes from Memorial Day weekend, which can easily be renamed “The Weekend of the Longball.” Here are the total number of home runs hit in the Majors broken down by day:

Friday: 25

Saturday: 26

Sunday: 28

Monday: 46

That’s a grand total of 125 home runs hit over the four-day span. Monday was particularly crazy. Think about this. If we divide 46 by the total number of teams in the Majors (30) we get 1.533. And if a team were to average 1.533 homers per game over the course of a 162-game season, they would finish the year with roughly 248 homers, which when stacked up against 2010 team batting stats would rank second in the league, behind only the Jose Bautista-led Toronto Blue Jays (257). I actually thought that this phantom team would rank first, but when one of your guys puts up 54 homers it certainly helps.



Brian Matusz is set to make his season debut on Wednesday.


Lewis @ Price
Floyd @ Wakefield
Burnett @ Gonzalez
Matusz @ Pineda – good matchup for Matusz to return
Chatwood @ Paulino
Baker @ Porcello
Tomlin @ Drabek – extreme walk rate makes Drabek untrustworthy for now
Oswalt @ Lannan
Myers @ D. Davis – this isn’t the Brett Myers of 2010
Marcum @ Leake
Correia @ Capuano – Pitch or Ditch heaven!
Richard @ Hanson
Vazquez @ D. Hudson
Lincecum @ Westbrook
Jimenez @ Garland – let’s see if Ubaldo can throw some strikes

Pitch or Ditch for Tuesday, May 31


Wilson @ Sonnanstine

Duensing @ Scherzer – Duensing’s last start was impressive but it was the Mariners.

Talbot @ Morrow – Morrow still a bit erratic but high K potential makes him a worthy start.

Humber @ Aceves – Humber too risky here.

Pineiro @ Francis – 22 hits allowed by Pineiro over his last two starts and KC lineup not as much of a joke as it used to be.

F. Garcia @ Anderson – Garcia doesn’t make it look easy but he gets the job done and I like the matchup.

Guthrie @ Bedard – No point holding onto Guthrie if you don’t feel comfortable pitching him here.

Lee @ Marquis

Vogelsong @ Carpenter – Little reason not to pitch Vogelsong at this point.

Greinke @ TBD

McDonald @ Dickey – McDonald sports a 3.14 ERA in May…risky play but decent gamble.

Latos @ Minor – Latos back on track?

Lyles @ Zambrano – Lyles worth keeping an eye on but I’m not starting him in his big league debut.

An. Sanchez @ Kennedy

Mortensen @ Lilly

Pitch or Ditch for Saturday-Monday, May 28-30

Edwin Jackson


Jackson @ Villanueva

Carrasco @ Shields

Weaver @ Liriano – Liriano seems to be getting it together?

Buchholz @ Oliver – Buchholz definitely has it together

O’Sullivan @ Harrison

Bergesen @ Outman

Nova @ King Felix – only gambling on Nova vs. M’s

Maholm @ Wells

Stauffer @ Zimmermann

J. Sanchez @ Wolf

Duke @ Wandy

Arroyo @ Lowe – could be 8-7 or 2-1, I’d rather not find out which

Hamels @ Pelfrey – Pelfrey worth a look in deep and/or non-mixed leagues

J. Garcia @ Nicasio

TBD @ Kuroda

***SIANO SAYS “E-jack hasn’t been impressing me lately and has struggled on the road so I’m going with bench don’t cut and definitely don’t pick up. Matt Harrison, however, has impressed me (especially if I cover up the walks) and I’m not too worried about the Royals so I’d pitch him. Wolf gets a very messed up Giants lineup but he is unreliable. Buyer beware. Agree on rest.”

                                                                                                                                                     ZACH’S PICKS FOR SUNDAY

Beckett @ Verlander

Danks @ Romero – Danks a risky play here…I’ll sit this one out.

Masterson @ Hellickson

Haren @ Pavano – Pavano continuing his erratic ways.

Duffy @ Ogando – Dangerous matchup for Duffy.

Britton @ Moscoso

Sabathia @ Vargas – If it weren’t for his last start, I would’ve tried Vargas here…now I’ll pass.

Worley @ Niese – Worley not a terrible choice if you’re willing to take a gamble.

Moseley @ Gorzelanny

Collmenter @ Norris

Cain @ Gallardo

Karstens @ Dempster – Dempster 1 ER or less in four of last five starts.

Lohse @ Chacin

Nolasco @ Kershaw

Cueto @ Jurrjens

                                                                                                                                                     ZACH’S PICKS FOR MONDAY

Blackburn @ Penny – Blackburn outstanding of late. Pitch Penny vs. mediocre Twins’ lineup.

Colon @ Cahill

Big Erv @ Hochevar – Hochevar’s most recent start (7 ER) scares me off.

Arrieta @ Fister – Fister sports a 2.81 ERA at home.

Holland @ W. Davis – I don’t trust Holland. Wouldn’t blame you if you sat Davis for this one.

Carmona @ Reyes – Fausto a roller-coaster ride and I don’t like this matchup.

Peavy @ Lester – Great test for Peavy.

Halladay @ Livan

Harang @ T. Hudson – Harang has earned this one.

Happ @ Coleman – Happ risky but he’s on a roll.

Bumgarner @ McClellan

Narveson @ Wood – Narveson at Cincy scares me. Will give Wood a shot.

Morton @ Gee – Will roll the dice that this game will be 3-2 and not 8-7.

Hammel @ Billingsley

Volstad @ Saunders – Volstad hasn’t been all that bad recently but this is a terrible matchup.

Pitch or Ditch for Friday, May 27


Wakefield @ Porcello – the increase in K’s is making a believer of me

Buehrle @ Drabek – this ain’t interleague play -> ditch Buehrle

Tomlin @ Price

Adcock @ Lewis

Chatwood @ Baker – there’s no gambling at Chatwood, and I never slice!

Tillman @ Gonzalez

Burnett @ Pineda – gotta trust A.J. in Seattle

Correia @ D. Davis

Richard @ Lannan – both worth a look in deep or non-mixed leagues

Oswalt @ Capuano

Leake @ Hanson – Leake worth a look in deep or non-mixed leagues

D. Hudson @ Myers

Lincecum @ Marcum

Westbrook @ Jimenez

Vazquez @ Garland

***SIANO SAYS “I’d start Correia vs. the depleted Cubs if I have him on my roster already.”

Pitch or Ditch for Thursday, May 26


Francis @ Guthrie – risk/reward on Guthrie, trust your gut

Aceves @ Scherzer

Anderson @ Pineiro

Humber @ Morrow – Humber hasn’t done anything to not deserve trust here

Bailey @ Lee – big test for Bailey

Dickey @ Zambrano

An. Sanchez @ Vogelsong – Vogelsong keeps getting’ it done!

Owings @ Mortensen

***SIANO SAYS “Lots of in between guys here, not a very attractive lineup of choices which means it may be a good night to relax. Don’t agree on Aceves since he’s still getting stretched out. Humber and Bailey going into the lion’s dens but Cory is right about giving them a chance. Middling options make my head hurt.”

Pitch or Ditch for Wednesday, May 25

Ted Lilly


Lester @ Talbot
Sonnanstine @ Penny – Eeww
Reyes @ F. Garcia – Garcia struggling of late
Bedard @ Duensing
Floyd @ Wilson
Hochevar @ Arrieta – risk/reward on both, what’s your gut say?
Cahill @ Big Erv
Minor @ McDonald
Marquis @ Greinke
Lilly @ An. Rodriguez – Astros are awful vs. LHP
Carpenter @ Latos – Hang with ’em on both
Wood @ Halladay – doubt Wood will be perfect again
Gee @ Coleman
Kennedy @ Hammel – D-backs struggle on the road, even in Coors?
Volstad @ Bumgarner

Pitch or Ditch for Tuesday, May 24

Charlie Morton is coming off a five-hit shutout.


Beckett @ Carmona – Carmona handles everyone but the White Sox

Duffy @ Britton – Duffy’s a great prospect, but let’s see him get his feet wet first

W. Davis @ Verlander

Romero @ Sabathia

Peavy @ Holland – I guess Peavy is feeling better!

Fister @ Blackburn – have to go for it vs. light-hitting Twins

TBD @ Haren

Saunders @ De La Rosa  (Gm 1 of DH)

Jurrjens @ Morton – don’t trust Morton, but he’s hot and Braves banged up

Cueto @ Worley

Billingsley @ Happ

Niese @ Dempster – Niese is a toss-up, but Cubs have been hot in May

Livan @ Narveson

Collmenter @ Chacin  (Gm 2 of DH)

McClellan @ Harang – I’ll gamble on Harang at home

Nolasco @ Cain

Pitch or Ditch for Saturday-Monday, May 21-23

"Big Z" aka Carlos Zambrano



Mortensen @ Marcum

Myers @ Morrow – Dangerous matchup for the erratic Myers. Morrow not that sharp of late but you gotta love the K’s.

Garland @ Buehrle – Buehrle pitching very well at home so far (1.66 ERA)

Westbrook @ Adcock

Bailey @ Tomlin

Lannan @ Guthrie – Will give Guthrie a try here.

Zambrano @ Aceves – Scary matchup for Big Z. I’m passing.

Capuano @ Burnett – A.J. pretty effective this year and gets injury-ravaged Mets’ lineup.

Hanson @ Pineiro

Price @ Vazquez – Don’t be surprised if Vazquez gets released in the near future.

Scherzer @ Correia

Anderson @ Lincecum

Lewis @ Lee

Pineda @ Richard – Richard a must-start here!

Baker @ Owings – Pitch on Baker, though I wouldn’t be surprised if he struggles here…could be HR derby.


Jimenez @ Wolf – Last Ubaldo outing very encouraging. Wolf extremely shaky of late.

Volquez @ Carrasco – Volquez way too erratic.

Pelfrey @ Nova – Nova not a terrible play here but I don’t trust him.

Wandy @ Drabek

Zimmermann @ Tillman

Kuroda @ Jackson – Edwin just too unpredictable for my taste.

J. Garcia @ O’Sullivan

Lowe @ Chatwood – Lowe a real toss-up so I’d understand if you decide to ditch.

Garza @ Wakefield

Shields @ Johnson

Porcello @ Maholm – Porcello a solid option here.

Harrison @ Oswalt

Gonzalez @ J. Sanchez – This could be a 1-0 game with the two pitchers combining for 10 walks!

King Felix @ Stauffer

Liriano @ D. Hudson – Liriano such an enigma but I’ll pitch.


Buchholz @ Masterson – Tough challenge for Masterson vs. his old club but I think he’s up for it.

Hellickson @ Coke

Litsch @ Colon

Danks @ Ogando – Danks very disappointing so far…I wouldn’t blame you if you sit this one out.

Vargas @ Pavano – If you don’t pitch Pavano here why own him?

McCarthy @ Weaver

Arroyo @ Hamels – Arroyo a questionable call.

Kershaw @ Norris

Gorzelanny @ Gallardo – Gorzelanny enjoying a fine year but I still see him as too risky.

Lohse @ Moseley – Moseley starting to fade and has actually pitched a lot worse at Petco than on the road.

Pitch or Ditch for Friday, May 20


Hammel @ Greinke – tough matchup for Hammel but he’s been good on the road

Wood @ White – both are high risk/high reward

Dickey @ F. Garcia

Marquis @ TBD

An. Rodriguez @ Reyes

D. Davis @ Lester

Lilly @ Humber – Lilly risky vs. ChiSox right-handed power

Carpenter @ Francis – not ditching Carpenter yet…

T. Hudson @ Big Erv

Penny @ Karstens – Penny’s on a hot streak, run with it

Wilson @ Halladay

Sonnanstine @ An. Sanchez

Duensing @ Kennedy

Bedard @ Latos – good place to gamble with Bedard

Cahill @ Vogelsong – run with Vogelsong while it lasts

                                                                                                                                                     ZACH’S PICKS

Hammel @ Greinke – Starting to lose faith in Hammel but I’ll give it a go here.

Wood @ White – Wood on a roll. Will take a chance on him.

Dickey @ F. Garcia – Pass on both soft-tossers.

Marquis @ TBD – Still don’t trust Marquis

An. Rodriguez @ Reyes

D.Davis @ Lester

Lilly @ Humber – Go for it on Humber. Dangerous matchup for Lilly though. Won’t blame you if you decide to sit him.

Carpenter @ Francis

T. Hudson @ Big Erv – Erv very erratic lately. Sit until further notice.

Penny @ Karstens – Very favorable matchup for Penny.

Wilson @ Halladay

Sonnanstine @ An. Sanchez

Duensing @ Kennedy

Bedard @ Latos – Bedard improving and great matchup.

Cahill @ Vogelsong – Vogelsong 2 ER or less in three of his four starts this year.

Pitch or Ditch for Thursday, May 19

Fausto Carmona


Blackburn @ Ross – Ross is legit, and a great matchup

Haren @ Fister

Sabathia @ Guthrie – Guthrie has some decent numbers on surface if you cover up his record. If you start him you’re basically chasing a W.

W. Davis @ Romero – Davis too erratic to trust

Verlander @ Beckett

Carmona @ Floyd

Holland @ Hochevar

McDonald @ Cueto – Cueto impressive since DL stint

Livan @ Gee

Happ @ McClellan

Chacin @ Blanton

Coleman @ Volstad

Jurrjens @ Collmenter – Jurrjens en fuego!

Narveson @ Harang – good matchup for Narveson despite Padres’ recent run-scoring prowess

Bumgarner @ Billingsley


Blackburn is a decent play, A’s aren’t much better than Twins.

Carmona deserves start vs. struggling White Sox.

Agree on rest.