Nick Nelson

The Week Ahead

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Week Ahead: Up and Comers

Friday, June 07, 2013


Among the Strong Plays in next week's batch of two-start pitchers, we find a few of the usual suspects, such as CC Sabathia, Doug Fister and Clayton Kershaw. But we also find some less heralded hurlers who have really taken the league by storm this year.

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There's Julio Teheran of the Braves. The top prospect got off to a rough start and owned a 5.08 ERA at the end of April but has since settled into a major groove, with a 2.11 ERA and 35/7 K/BB ratio in six starts since the beginning of May. He's a no-brainer with match-ups against the Padres and Giants.

Then there's Chicago's Scott Feldman. He seemed like a somewhat odd pickup for the Cubs at $6 million given his lack of sustained success in Texas, but Theo Epstein and Co. are looking like geniuses now that the right-hander has posted a 2.84 ERA and 1.17 WHIP in his first 11 starts. Feldman gets the Reds at home and the Mets on the road.

Alex Cobb of the Rays is another name that stands out. The young righty had enjoyed moderate success in Tampa the past two seasons but is suddenly looking like the staff ace as he's 6-2 with a 2.39 ERA and 69/17 K/BB ratio in 75 innings. He's scheduled to face the Red Sox and Royals in Tropicana.

Each of the players above has taken his game to another level, though in each case it's not entirely surprising since they're all young pitchers with upside. Perhaps the most shocking name listed this week is Bartolo Colon, who appeared cooked as a 40-year-old coming off a 50-game PED suspension. Instead, he's headed toward perhaps the best season of his career, with a 7-2 record and 3.14 ERA in 12 starts for Oakland. In his last four starts, Colon is 4-0 with a 0.90 ERA. Wow.

Going Twice…

American League

Strong Plays

Derek Holland: CLE (Kluber), TOR (Dickey)
Alexi Ogando: CLE (Kazmir), TOR (TBD)
Alex Cobb: BOS (Lackey), KC (Guthrie)
Hisashi Iwakuma: HOU (Keuchel), @OAK (Colon)
Bartolo Colon: NYY (Sabathia), SEA (Iwakuma)
CC Sabathia: @OAK (Colon), @LAA (Weaver)
Jered Weaver: @BAL (Garcia), NYY (Sabathia)
Doug Fister: @KC (Guthrie), @MIN (Walters)
Jon Lester: @TB (Hernandez), @BAL (Gonzalez)
John Lackey: @TB (Cobb), @BAL (Garcia)

Decent Plays

R.A. Dickey: @CWS (Quintana), @TEX (Holland)
Jeremy Guthrie: DET (Fister), @TB (Cobb)
Dallas Keuchel: @SEA (Iwakuma), CWS (Axelrod)
Dylan Axelrod: TOR (Dickey), @HOU (Keuchel)
Corey Kluber: @TEX (Holland), WAS (Haren)
Miguel Gonzalez: LAA (Vargas), BOS (Lester)

At Your Own Risk

Roberto Hernandez: BOS (Lester), KC (TBD)
P.J. Walters: PHI (Hamels), DET (Fister)
Freddy Garcia: LAA (Weaver), BOS (Lackey)

National League

Strong Plays

Wandy Rodriguez: SF (Lincecum), LAD (Kershaw)
Cole Hamels: @MIN (Walters), @COL (Garland)
Clayton Kershaw: ARI (Miley), @PIT (Rodriguez)
Homer Bailey: @CHC (Feldman), MIL (Lohse)
Scott Feldman: CIN (Bailey), @NYM (Hefner)
Julio Teheran: @SD (Marquis), SF (Lincecum)

Decent Plays

Dan Haren: @COL (Garland), @CLE (Kazmir)
Michael Wacha: @NYM (Gee), @MIA (Nolasco)
Tim Lincecum: @PIT (Rodriguez), @ATL (Teheran)
Jason Marquis: ATL (Teheran), ARI (Miley)
Dillon Gee: STL (Wacha), CHC (Garza)
Yovani Gallardo: @MIA (Nolasco), @CIN (Cueto)
Ricky Nolasco: MIL (Gallardo), STL (Wacha)
Matt Garza: CIN (Cingrani), @NYM (Gee)

At Your Own Risk

Jon Garland: WAS (Haren), PHI (Hamels)
Wade Miley: @LAD (Kershaw), @SD (Marquis)

Streamer City

The following pitchers are generally available in over 50 percent of fantasy leagues and have favorable match-ups this week:

American League

Wednesday, 6/12: Nick Tepesch vs. CLE
In his past four starts, the rookie right-hander has a 1.96 ERA.

Friday, 6/14: John Danks @ HOU
Danks hasn't looked great since returning to the White Sox in late May, but he does have two quality starts in three turns. He shouldn't have too much trouble with the Astros.

Saturday, 6/15: A.J. Griffin vs. SEA
Griffin is coming off a lights-out performance against the Brewers and has been quite solid overall this season, with a 3.67 ERA and 1.14 WHIP.

National League

Tuesday, 6/11: Jacob Turner vs. MIL
Turner has been outstanding in his first two starts this season, allowing only one run over 13 innings. Hard to imagine that lasting long, but he draws another favorable match-up this week.

Wednesday, 6/12: Tyler Cloyd @ MIN
In five turns for the Phillies this season, Cloyd has four quality starts and a 3.68 ERA. There's still seemingly potential for more strikeouts.

Saturday, 6/15: Jeremy Hefner vs. CHC
Hefner has had it working since a rough start to the season, with a 3.60 ERA over 50 innings in his last eight starts. He's completed six-plus frames in seven of his last eight outings.

Total Games

American League

6: CLE, CWS, DET, HOU, LAA, MIN, NYY, OAK, SEA
7: BAL, BOS, KC, TB, TEX, TOR

National League

6: ARI, ATL, COL, LAD, MIA, MIL, NYM, PHI, PIT, SD, SF, STL, WAS
7: CHC, CIN

Lefty/Righty Breakdowns

American League

BAL: 5 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
BOS: 7 vs. RHP, 0 vs. LHP
CLE: 5 vs. RHP, 1 vs. LHP
CWS: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
DET: 5 vs. RHP, 1 vs. LHP
HOU: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
KC: 6 vs. RHP, 1 vs. LHP
LAA: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
MIN: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
NYY: 5 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
OAK: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
SEA: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
TB: 5 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
TEX: 5 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
TOR: 4 vs. RHP, 3 vs. LHP

National League

ARI: 2 vs. RHP, 4 vs. LHP
ATL: 5 vs. RHP, 1 vs. LHP
CHC: 5 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
CIN: 6 vs. RHP, 1 vs. LHP
COL: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP
LAD: 3 vs. RHP, 3 vs. LHP
MIA: 5 vs. RHP, 1 vs. LHP
MIL: 6 vs. RHP, 0 vs. LHP
NYM: 6 vs. RHP, 0 vs. LHP
PHI: 6 vs. RHP, 0 vs. LHP
PIT: 3 vs. RHP, 3 vs. LHP
SD: 3 vs. RHP, 3 vs. LHP
SF: 2 vs. RHP, 4 vs. LHP
STL: 6 vs. RHP, 0 vs. LHP
WAS: 4 vs. RHP, 2 vs. LHP

The Infirmary

You can get a full listing of injured players at Rotoworld's Injury Page but here's the latest on a few prominent players who have been out of action:

Brandon McCarthy: Out indefinitely (shoulder)
Johnny Cueto: Out indefinitely (shoulder)
Asdrubal Cabrera: Out until late June (quads)
Jake Peavy: Out until mid-July (ribs)
Carl Crawford: Out until late June (hamstring)
Marco Estrada: Out until mid-June (hamstring)
Jeanmar Gomez: Out indefinitely (arm)
Yonder Alonso: Out until early July (hand)
Justin Smoak: Out indefinitely (ribs)
Mitch Moreland: Out until mid-June (hamstring)
Stephen Strasburg: Out until mid-June (ribs)



Nick Nelson is a frequent contributor to Rotoworld's baseball coverage and regularly blogs about the Minnesota Twins at Twins Daily. Follow him on Twitter at nnelson9.
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