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Pitch or Ditch for Wednesday, April 22

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CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/16 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

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Jeremy Guthrie

CORY’S PICKS

Kluber @ Samardzija

Lackey @ Fister

Cosart @ Hamels

Hammel @ Worley – Pirates are scuffling big-time right now

Jimenez @ Ar. Sanchez

Warren @ Price

Stults @ Gee – hard to trust Gee at this point… too bad for too long

Kelly @ Karns – playing it safe with Karns vs. BoSox bats

Pelfrey @ Guthrie – home start vs. a weak offense, why not?

Cueto @ Nelson

Shields @ Kendrick

Gallardo @ Bradley

Gray @ Weaver – Weaver was better last time out but the A’s are too scary for now

R. Hernandez @ Happ

Kershaw @ Bumgarner – stay up late for this one!

***ZACH SAYS “In deeper leagues, I’d consider Cosart versus a sub-par Phillies lineup. He pitched well in his season debut before getting roughed up by the Mets his last time out, but the Mets have roughed up a number of pitchers so far this season.”

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Pitch or Ditch for Tuesday, April 21

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/16 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Taijuan Walker

CORY’S PICKS

Lynn @ G. Gonzalez
Haren
@ J. Williams – pickin’ on the Phillies
T. Wood @ Liriano
B. Norris @ Buehrle
Eovaldi @ Lobstein
Cahill @ Niese – pickin’ on the Braves
Miley @ Archer
Carrasco @ Noesi – Noesi just keeping the seat warm for Rodon
Milone @ Vargas – both of these guys worth deeeep consideration
Marquis @ Fiers
Morrow @ Matzek – impressive start for Morrow but I’m not trusting him in Coors, not yet
Martinez @ C. Anderson
Pomeranz @ Santiago – solid risk/reward profile for this matchup
McHugh @ Walker – if Walker can’t handle the Astros right now, he belongs in Triple-A
B. Anderson @ Lincecum

Zach’s Two-Start Pitcher Notes – Week of 4/20

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Hey everyone,

Here’s the second installment of my two-start pitcher notes. Going forward, I’ll be aiming for three pitches and three ditches every week, and remember that I’m focusing on the borderline calls, not the obvious ones.

PITCH

Jonathon Niese  (vs. ATL, @NYY)

Despite the 1.59 ERA, Niese hasn’t been great over his first two starts, as he’s allowed 16 hits across 11 1/3 innings while recording only six strikeouts. But he’s still a solid back end of the rotation type fantasy SP who will give you a quality start more times than not. The vs. ATL matchup is an especially appealing one. Why? Niese is coming off a season in which he posted a 2.74 ERA and 1.18 at home and a 2.61 ERA and 1.21 WHIP in three starts against the Braves, and that was a far superior Atlanta lineup than the one they’re trotting out this season. And Niese pitched fairly well against them last week. As for the @NYY matchup, it might seem a bit scary but the Yankees simply aren’t hitting on a consistent basis. In mixed leagues of 12 teams or more, I’d give Niese a shot.

Brett Anderson

Brett Anderson  (@SF, @SD)

When healthy, Anderson belongs on the vast majority of fantasy rosters. The problem is that Anderson hasn’t been healthy all that much over the past several seasons. Well, he’s healthy right now, boasting a 3.27 ERA and 1.18 WHIP throughy his first two starts of the 2015 campaign. Road matchups against the Giants and Padres aren’t as golden as they used to be, as the two lineups are much improved. But both AT&T Park and Petco Park remain pitcher-friendly venues. I don’t see a whole lot of risk in starting Anderson next week.

Hector Santiago  (vs. OAK, vs. TEX)

Santiago makes for an intriguing option in deep mixed/AL-only formats. I’ve always been a fan of this guy thanks to his consistently high strikeout rates (8.3 career K/9) and the fact that fantasy owners are still underrating him, probably because he has yet to make more than 24 starts in a season. But he’s still just 27 years of age, and if he can finally stick in the rotation for an entire season, he should continue to carry mixed league value. The key will be limiting the free passes, and he’s done a nice job of that so far this season (three walks in 12 1/3 innings). Even in a 12-team mixed, I’d be open to pitching Santiago next week, despite the so-so matchups. There’s a decent chance that he’s on your waiver wire.

DITCH

Wei-Yin Chen  (@BOS, vs. BOS)

I actually like Chen. He’s been a popular two-start pitcher/pitch or ditch pick of mine for quite some time now. But next week is certainly not the time to start him. In 11 career starts against the Red Sox, Chen sports a mediocre 4.24 ERA and 1.41 WHIP. In seven career starts at Fenway Park, he’s registered a 4.99 ERA and 1.36 WHIP. All it will take is one poor outing for his two-start week to be ruined, and really, what are the chances that he posts back-to-back quality starts against this team? By the way, the Red Sox are currently tied for 2nd in the Majors in runs scored.

Nathan Eovaldi

Nathan Eovaldi  (@DET, vs. NYM)

The hope was that the Yankees coaching staff could help the hard-throwing Eovaldi become a more reliable pitcher. So far, not so good. It’s great to be able to consistently reach 95-plus on the radar gun, but if there isn’t an effective secondary pitch besides the heater, the overall consistency will be lacking, and that pretty much sums up Eovaldi’s career up to this point. The 4.35 ERA isn’t awful, but 16 hits allowed through his first 10 1/3 innings simply doesn’t cut it. The Tigers lineup is always dangerous and the Mets offense, while far from elite, is no longer a pushover. In mixed leagues, you’re better off staying away from Eovaldi for the time being.

Wade Miley  (@TB, @BAL)

Miley’s AL experience now includes one decent start and one disaster outing. The bottom line is that he’s extremely difficult to trust for mixed league purposes unless the matchups are especially favorable. Next week’s pair of matchups don’t exactly fit under that category, particularly @BAL. I’ll be ditching Miley in all mixed leagues.

Pitch or Ditch for Saturday-Monday, April 18-20

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

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Chris Hesto

ZACH’S PICKS

SATURDAY

Harang @ Zimmermann – Harang an acceptable option in deeper leagues but I’ll play it safe in this matchup.

Al. Wood @ Dickey – Dickey off to a strong start.

Sale @ An. Sanchez

Salazar @ Hughes – Appealing matchup for Salazar in his first start of the season.

Bailey @ C. Martinez – Bailey could graduate to automatic start status soon but let me see one solid performance first.

Ross @ Hendricks – Hendricks worth monitoring but first start was ugly, despite it being at Coors.

Tillman @ Buchholz – Staying away from Clay.

Lohse @ Worley – Ditch Lohse until further notice.

Hahn @ Ventura

Wilson @ Keuchel

Latos @ deGrom – Impossible to trust Latos right now.

Tanaka @ Odorizzi

R. De La Rosa @ Heston – Heston very impressive so far.

Lewis @ King Felix

Lyles @ Greinke – Lyles deserves consideration in deep mixed/NL-only leagues but I’m not too thrilled about this matchup.

SUNDAY

S. Miller @ D. Norris

Quintana @ Greene – Greene a prime sell-high candidate though.

Koehler @ Harvey – Koehler pitching well and boasts strong career numbers vs. Mets.

Pineda @ Andriese

W. Chen @ Porcello – I like Chen but this is not the place to use him.

Buchanan @ Strasburg

Garza @ Cole – The results just haven’t been there for Garza thus far.

Kazmir @ Duffy – Haven’t given up on Duffy but very difficult to trust him right now.

House @ May

Richards @ Feldman – I’ll chance it with Richards if he does in fact make this start.

Cashner @ Lester – I still think Cashner is overrated though.

Hellickson @ Hudson

Detwiler @ Paxton

Butler @ McCarthy – Butler has emerged onto the PoD radar but this is not a very good matchup.

Leake @ Wainwright – Leake disappointing so far, but I’ll give him another chance.

MONDAY

W. Chen @ Masterson

Sabathia @ Simon – The numbers say to pitch Simon, but he scares me.

Arrieta @ Burnett – 15-to-3 K/BB ratio for Burnett.

DeSclafani @ Peralta – How can you not pitch DeSclafani?

Bauer @ Danks

Gibson @ Volquez – I’ll never fully trust Volquez.

Despaigne @ J. De La Rosa – Keep an eye on Despaigne but too risky to pitch him at Coors.

Graveman @ Shoemaker – Graveman bounced back somewhat in his last start but I’m still wary of him.

Wojciechowski @ Iwakuma

Pitch or Ditch for Friday, April 17

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

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MLB: Los Angeles Angels-Workout

CORY’S PICKS

Samardzija @ Price
Shields
@ Hammel
O’Sullivan @ Scherzer – mismatch of the day, so the Phillies will probably win 12-3
Nelson @ Locke – Nelson’s new spike curveball is a difference-maker
Teheran @ Hutchison
Jimenez @ Kelly – O’s could be much tougher for Kelly than the tired Yankees were…
Phelps @ Colon – Phelps is worth watching though…
Warren @ Karns – both of these guys could end up being sneaky good values this year
Gray @ Guthrie
Kluber @ Pelfrey
Weaver @ R. Hernandez – need to see something positive from Weaver
Cueto @ Wacha
Gallardo @ Happ
Kendrick @ Kershaw
Collmenter @ Peavy – don’t like Collmenter on the road nearly as much as at home

Pitch or Ditch for Thursday, April 16

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

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MLB: Minnesota Twins at Chicago White Sox

CORY’S PICKS

Vargas @ Milone – like Milone at home, especially after his impressive debut
Fiers @ Lackey
Hamels
@ Fister
Archer
@ Ar. Sanchez – I think Sanchez is a better fit in the ‘pen
Cosart @ Gee – both worth watching, but not starting, at least not now
Bradley @ Bumgarner

***ZACH SAYS “Vargas was solid in his season debut against a formidable Angels lineup. I’d consider pitching him in a favorable matchup at Target Field. Agree on rest.”

Pitch or Ditch for Wednesday, April 15

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

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MLB: Chicago Cubs at San Diego Padres

CORY’S PICKS

Danks @ Bauer
Haren @ Stults – I don’t mind picking on the Braves with Haren
G. Gonzalez @ Miley
Santiago @ Ranaudo
Eovaldi @ B. Norris – spring hype didn’t pan out in Eovaldi’s first start
Simon @ Liriano – I’ll roll with Liriano but Detroit’s O is scary
E. Ramirez @ Buehrle
Williams @ Niese
Marquis @ T. Wood
Volquez @ Gibson
Pomeranz @ McHugh
Peralta
@ Lynn
C. Anderson @ Morrow – Morrow’s debut was impressive, so why not?
T. Walker @ B. Anderson
Matzek @ Lincecum

***ZACH SAYS “Santiago was so-so in his first start. Pitching him in Texas would scare me too much. Agree on rest.”

Pitch or Ditch for Tuesday, April 14

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

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MLB: Cincinnati Reds at Toronto Blue Jays

CORY’S PICKS

Strasburg @ Masterson

Sabathia @ M. Gonzalez

Greene @ Burnett – No offense AJ, but Detroit’s offense is just scary so far

Andriese @ D. Norris

Quintana @ Carrasco

Koehler @ Cahill – blue-plate special!

Buchanan @ Harvey

Rucinski @ N. Martinez

DeSclafani @ Arrieta – DeSclafani is a major sleeper this year

Graveman @ Peacock – give Graveman another shot vs. K-prone ‘Stros

Iwakuma @ Huff

Hellickson @ Despaigne – both worth a look given the venue and matchup

Bergman @ Hudson

***ZACH SAYS “I’d pitch Hudson at home despite 5 BB season debut. Agree on rest.”

 

Zach’s Two-Start Pitcher Notes – Week of 4/13

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Hey everyone,

Welcome to the first 2015 installment of my Two-Start Pitcher Notes series. Every Friday, I will highlight several of the following week’s projected two-start pitchers and place them either in the Pitch section or the Ditch section. Keep in mind that I don’t need to tell you to pitch Stephen Strasburg in a two-start week. The borderline calls, based on either recent performance or the matchups, will be my focus.

OK, I think that covers it. Let’s get started.

PITCH

Daniel Norris (vs. TB, vs. ATL)

Earning a spot in the Blue Jays rotation this spring after putting together an exceptional minor league campaign last season, Norris pitched better in his season debut last night than his stat line indicates, as two of his three earned runs and two of the six hits he allowed were courtesy of a pair of solo homers. His matchups next week are about as good as it gets, as both the Rays and Braves are expected to finish near the bottom of the league in runs scored this season. Keep in mind that this is a guy who led the Minors in strikeouts per nine innings last year while posting a 2.53 ERA. At this point, he belongs on all fantasy rosters.

MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at Miami Marlins

Tom Koehler (@ATL, @NYM)

Koehler entered the Pitch or Ditch conversation last season, especially for his home starts (3.00 ERA). No, he won’t be making any home starts next week, but these matchups are quite appealing nonetheless. In nine combined starts against the Braves and Mets last year, Koehler registered a 2.88 ERA and 1.13 WHIP, and he was solid against the Braves in his 2015 season debut on Wednesday. In mixed leagues of 12 teams or more, go ahead and pitch him.

Tim Hudson (vs. COL, vs. ARI)

Hudson is old and boring, and don’t expect a lot of strikeouts. But he almost always puts together a quality performance. I wouldn’t necessarily go out of my way to pick him up if you have alternative options that offer a higher amount of upside, but the matchups are decent and maybe you can come away with a win or two to go along with strong ratios.

DITCH

Mike Leake (@CHC, @STL)

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of Leake. I own him in a number of leagues. Even after his breakout season last year, I think he’s still being underrated. But unless you’re in a deep mixed (more than 12 teams) or NL-only league, benching him for next week is probably the right move. Not only was he very shaky on Wednesday, but Leake’s road ERA last season was 4.07, this compared to a 3.26 mark at home. The Cubs and Cardinals lineups have struggled so far, but I don’t expect that to last much longer. There’s just too much talent on those rosters.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Baltimore Orioles

Wei-Yin Chen (vs. NYY, @BOS)

Chen is another guy who always seems to be overlooked in fantasy. Actually, he’s kind of like the AL version of Mike Leake. I’ve chosen Chen a number of times over the years as a two-start Pitch, and he might even appear under the Pitch heading at some point during this season. But I’m not risking it next week, not with these matchups and not coming off a disappointing outing on Tuesday in a favorable matchup against the Rays.

Jeremy Hellickson (@SD, @SF)

Let’s face it, the Jeremy Hellickson that won Rookie of the Year honors is a thing of the past. The Jeremy Hellickson of 2015 is a mediocre pitcher who just got roughed up by the same Giants club that he will be facing next week. As for the Padres offense, the days of picking on them are a thing of the past. Forget 12-team mixed league, I wouldn’t pitch Hellickson in a 15-team mixed league. Even in an NL-only league, I’d have to think long and hard about it, and ultimately, I’d lean towards ditching.

Pitch or Ditch for Saturday-Monday, April 11-13

***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.

CLICK HERE to listen to our latest podcasts (Thursday, 4/9 is most recent)

Check out Cory’s Tout Wars recap and Zach’s Tout Wars recap

Plus, our overrated and underrated teams for 2015

And finally, Cory’s article on the evolution of fantasy baseball

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MLB: Colorado Rockies at Milwaukee Brewers

ZACH’S PICKS

SATURDAY

Kelley @ Warren

Wacha @ Cueto – Curious to see how Wacha will fare.

Pelfrey @ Samardzija

Price @ House – House worth monitoring in the early going but I’ll play it safe here.

Happ @ Gray – Happ another guy who can emerge as viable PoD option but let’s wait and see for now.

Archer @ Cosart – Favorable matchup for Cosart.

A. Sanchez @ Jimenez – I’m optimistic about Sanchez but this matchup scares me.

Fister @ Hamels

Worley @ Nelson – Both are intriguing in deeper leagues but first need to see at least one strong outing.

Gee @ Teheran – Don’t be fooled by Atlanta’s early offensive success.

R. Hernandez @ Gallardo – Tough to trust Gallardo at this point.

Hammel @ Kendrick – I like Hammel, but not at Coors.

Kershaw @ Bradley – The matchup makes Bradley risky, but I’ll give him a shot.

Bumgarner @ Shields

Guthrie @ Weaver

SUNDAY

Lobstein @ Kluber – Keep an eye on Lobstein though.

C. Martinez @ TBD (CIN) – Not an ideal matchup for Martinez but he doesn’t give up a lot of homers.

Karns @ Alvarez

Hutchison @ Tillman

Colon @ A. Wood

Scherzer @ O’Sullivan

Hughes @ Sale

Liriano @ Lohse – Not concerned about Lohse…yet.

Keuchel @ Lewis

Ventura @ Wilson – Wilson impressive enough in season debut to earn this one.

King Felix @ Hahn – Not giving up on Hahn.

Peavy @ Ross

Hendricks @ Lyles – Hendricks strictly an NL-only option in scary matchup.

Greinke @ Collmenter – Taking the conservative route with Collmenter.

Buchholz @ Tanaka

MONDAY

Harang @ deGrom – Harang no sure thing but I have just enough confidence in him to pitch him here.

An. Sanchez @ Cole

Zimmermann @ Porcello – Might want to sit Porcello in shallower leagues though.

Duffy @ May – Duffy not sharp in season debut but I love this matchup.

Garza @ Wainwright – Sticking with Garza for now.

Butler @ Heston – Not sold on either yet.

Pineda @ W. Chen

Odorizzi @ Dickey

Latos @ Miller – I’m expecting better results from Latos in rematch vs. Braves.

Shoemaker @ Detwiler

Leake @ Lester – Leake a true toss-up.

Kazmir @ Feldman

Paxton @ McCarthy

R. De La Rosa @ Cashner

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