Hanson @ Hughes
Arroyo @ Masterson – Masterson en fuego now that he’s throwing strikes again
Westbrook @ Porcello
Nolasco @ Doubront – Nolasco back to PoD, matchup-based usage
Wells @ Floyd
Eovaldi @ Milone – Milone a stud at home
Vogelsong @ Weaver
Mazzaro @ Lyles
TBD (TOR) @ Gallardo
Vargas @ Cahill
Darvish @ Bass
Liriano @ Bedard – both are very high risk, very high reward
Hellickson @ Strasburg
Matusz @ Gee
White @ Blanton – Rockies are awful on the road
Back in April, who would’ve thought that R.A. Dickey and Lance Lynn would be crowned aces by mid-June? Dickey and Lynn’s promotions headline our newest version of the Pitch or Ditch category chart.
Here are the changes we’ve made since the last chart:
Dickey grad to ace
Lynn grad to ace
Masterson PoD to grad
Buchholz PoD to grad
Miley PoD to grad
Burnett PoD to grad
Kuroda PoD to grad
Nova PoD to grad
Quintana indifferent to PoD
Richards indifferent to PoD
Romero ace to grad
Gallardo ace to grad
Latos grad to PoD
Floyd grad to PoD
Nolasco grad to PoD
Gomez PoD to indifferent
Kendrick PoD to indifferent
White PoD to indifferent
And once again, a reminder as to how the chart works:
We’ve divided all of the current starting rotation pitchers in the Majors into five groups: Aces, Grads (pitchers who should not be dropped and can be started almost all the time), Pitch or Ditch (guys who you should be picking up to start in favorable matchups but do not deserve a regular roster spot), DTMs (guys who we are fed up with and would not start under any circumstances for the time being) and Indifferents (guys who we don’t feel any ill-will towards but who just aren’t that good). Keep in mind that these classifications are very much subject to change throughout the season based on performance. We’ll be updating the chart every other week.
All feedback is welcome!
T. Hudson @ Kuroda
Leake @ Tomlin – Leake was sick last time out but still had 6 K’s in 4.1 IP
Lynn @ Verlander
Buehrle @ Buchholz – yep, he’s back
Wood @ Peavy
Harang @ McCarthy – good K potential for Harang
Zito @ Wilson
Diamond @ Correia – it’s the Pirates: pitch
Price @ Wang
Hunter @ J. Santana
Hochevar @ Wandy
Chavez @ Thornburg
Ramirez @ D. Hudson
Feldman @ Volquez – nope, he’s still DTM
Outman @ Hamels
Lee @ Romero
Fiers @ Hendriks
Friedrich @ Fister
Burnett @ Jimenez – Coming off two straight strong outings, I’ll pitch Ubaldo vs. woeful Pirates’ lineup.
Ohlendorf @ TBD (OAK)
Harrell @ Grimm
An. Sanchez @ Shields
Saunders @ Big Erv – This could be 2-1 or 10-9. Playing it safe and passing.
Lincecum @ Millwood – If Timmy doesn’t pitch well here, my panic meter will kick into high gear.
Pettitte @ Zimmermann
B. Chen @ Kelly
Hammel @ Beachy – Hammel has been shaky of late but I’ll give him a shot.
Lester @ Samardzija
Humber @ Billingsley
Bailey @ Niese – Homer has five quality starts in his last six outings.
Guthrie @ Scherzer – I think Max will do well here. COL struggles to score on the road.
Lincoln @ Gomez
Kendrick @ Alvarez – Alvarez a decent option in deeper leagues though. I just don’t see a lot of upside.
Johnson @ Cobb
Greinke @ Blackburn – Blackburn’s been very inconsistent lately.
Norris @ Lewis – How can we trust Norris @TEX after he gets roughed up by Giants?
Kennedy @ Richards – Richards not yet mixed league material.
Richard @ Colon – Great matchup for both.
Bumgarner @ King Felix
W. Chen @ Delgado – Chen’s been hit or miss lately but I’ll roll the dice on him here.
Nova @ Jackson
Mendoza @ Wainwright
Quintana @ Capuano – Quintana not a terrible choice in deeper leagues, but in 12-teamers I’m ditching.
Beckett @ Maholm
Cueto @ Young
Minor @ Sabathia – I’m not expecting Minor to have same kind of success he enjoyed last time out vs. Yanks.
Latos @ Lowe – Latos earning back my trust.
Garza @ Peavy
Cain @ Williams – Williams has been lights out at home.
Arrieta @ Dickey
J. Sanchez @ Happ – This could get ugly.
TBD (TOR) @ Wolf
Noesi @ Miley – Gotta love Miley here.
Harrison @ Marquis
To help all you weekly leaguers, here are my thoughts on seven of the tougher calls for next week. Be sure to listen to today’s podcast when it comes out this afternoon as Cory will discuss some of these guys.
Mat Latos (@CLE, vs. MIN)
Yeah, Latos has been wildly inconsistent this season but he’s coming off a dominant performance vs. these same Indians and the Twins rank near the bottom of the AL in runs scored on the road. They’re also batting a lowly .230 in road games. I’ve been very down on Latos of late but I’m slowly starting to trust him again. Pitch.
Wade Miley (vs. SEA, vs. CHC)
Miley shocked us all by throwing a gem @TEX and now gets to face an awful Mariners lineup along with a Cubs offense that ranks 14th in the NL in runs scored. In case you haven’t noticed, he now sports a 2.39 ERA and 1.04 WHIP for the season! In mixed leagues of 12 teams or more, he’s a pitch.
Mark Buehrle (@BOS, vs. TOR)
Buehrle always seems to fly under the radar but he’s very quietly enjoying life in the NL. That said, next week is a time to consider sitting him as he’ll be facing two of the better offenses in baseball. He doesn’t strike out a lot of guys so you’re basically counting on strong ratios. I don’t see it happening. Ditch.
Jerome Williams (vs SF, vs LAD)
Williams has struggled of late but check out those home/road splits! 5-1 with a 2.93 ERA in six home starts this year and I’m still picking on the Giants’ lineup despite their 10-run outburst on Wednesday night. He’s a worthy play in deeper formats.
Aaron Harang (@OAK, @LAA)
He’s had a few poor outings here and there but on the whole Harang has been very solid this season. He’s on a nice roll right now (2-0, 1.89 ERA over his last three starts), but don’t overlook his mediocre road numbers (4.37 ERA, 1.48 WHIP). I love the @OAK matchup and the @LAA matchup is a decent one, but in 12-team mixed leagues I’d take the conservative route and ditch. He should only be considered in NL-only and very deep mixed leagues.
Tommy Milone (vs. LAD, vs. SF)
It’s very simple with Milone. You ditch him on the road (7.42 ERA, 1.67 WHIP) and pitch him at home (0.98 ERA, 0.85 WHIP). Two home starts (one of which is against the Giants) = Pitch.
Derek Lowe (vs. CIN, @HOU)
Lowe has been a big tease this year, dominating in some starts but getting shelled in others. His 3.78 ERA is fine but he doesn’t strike anyone out and his 1.53 WHIP is ugly. These aren’t the toughest matchups in the world but the risk easily outweighs the reward. Ditch.
Francis @ Crosby
McDonald @ Masterson – Masterson much better of late
Worley @ Hutchison
Zambrano @ Moore
Lyles @ Darvish
Gallardo @ Liriano – roll the dice on Liriano if you feel lucky
Cahill @ Haren – Cahill not always great, but rarely terrible
Bass @ Blackley – Bass has thudded back to earth
Vogelsong @ Vargas – good home matchup for Vargas
Matsuzaka @ Dempster
Hughes @ Gonzalez
Matusz @ Hanson
Mazzaro @ Lohse
Sale @ Kershaw – “wow” matchup
Arroyo @ Gee
Strasburg @ Drabek
Correia @ Matusz
Dickey @ Price
Miley @ Harrison – Miley’s been great but this is too dangerous
Wolf @ Hochevar
Hamels @ Walters
Marquis @ Noesi – good matchup for improving Noesi
Doubront @ Nolasco
Lowe @ Leake
Kuroda @ T. Hudson – I’ll gamble on Timmy at home
Porcello @ Garza
Peavy @ Lynn
McCarthy @ White
Wilson @ Eovaldi – Eovaldi worth a look in deeper/unmixed leagues
Happ @ Cain
***ZACH SAYS “Noesi has been terrible over his last two starts, so I’m passing on him. In deeper leagues, I’d sooner take a chance on Happ @SF. Agree on rest.”
Lincoln @ W. Chen – worth a shot on Chen at home vs. a weak offense
Wang @ Alvarez – the low K rate is a concern but Alvarez gets it done…
Young @ Cobb
Kennedy @ Lewis – Kennedy’s recent resurgence earns the nod here
Greinke @ Mendoza
Kendrick @ Blackburn
Richard @ King Felix – Richard is usually a strict home play but in Seattle is the next-best thing
Buchholz @ Buehrle
Gomez @ Cueto
Sabathia @ Minor
Scherzer @ Maholm
Quintana @ Wainwright
Colon @ Guthrie – Colon in Coors? Yyyyaaaahhh… no.
Williams @ Harang
Norris @ Bumgarner