Friday, April 22, 2011

Fantasy Baseball Spot Starter Pickups For Friday 4/22/11

Thursday's Recommended Starter's Stats - Brandon McCarthy - 8.0 Innings Pitched - 6 Strikeouts - Loss - 1.13 ERA - 0.63 WHIP
Week 3 Starters' Stats - 28.0 Innings Pitched - 29 Strikeouts - 9.32 K/9- 1 Win in 4 Starts - 1.29 ERA - 0.86 WHIP
Cumulative Starters' Stats - 152.1 Innings Pitched - 126 Strikeouts - 7.44 K/9 - 11 Wins in 24 Starts - 3.19 ERA - 1.13 WHIP
Starter Spreadsheet Online Here

Can't complain about the game McCarthy had on Thursday night.  He was great except for the one home run.  Complete eight inning game, six strikeouts and just the solo home run that lead to him getting a loss.  Sometimes you run up against Felix Hernandez and don't get a win in a one run game.  Regardless, he gave you eight solid innings of great ERA and WHIP and the strikeouts with it. Still have a great week going so far, in spite of my lack of wins.  You can ride my hot streak with my Friday recommendation coming up...

Fausto Carmona - Cleveland Indians at Minnesota Twins - 8:10 PM EST - 9.4% Owned in ESPN Standard Leagues

Carmona's ERA is an ugly 4.74, but that number is being inflated by a horrible three inning ten run outing on opening day against the White Sox.  Other than that, he's been averaging seven innings and five strikeouts per start, and let up just three earned runs over the three games.  Now he draws the worst offense in the league at Target Field, one of the best pitcher match-ups available in the game right now.  Enjoy five or six strikeouts over seven plus with maybe one or two earned runs.  With the Cleveland Offense backing him up, he should be in line for a win even if he somehow gets blown up.

LATE EDIT : Indians Twins was postponed, so I guess my recommendation for tonight becomes Tyson Ross by default?  I'm hoping this goes well.

As always, the rest of the players are listed in the order I would start them.  Ownership percentages in ESPN leagues in parenthesis.

Tyson Ross (0.1%) - Oakland at Seattle - Today is a day where as you will see soon, all the good available pitchers have bad match-ups.  That means we are rolling the dice a little bit here in the second slot with Tyson Ross.  He was a strong strikeout pitcher in the minors, and has proven as a reliever in the majors that he can maintain a solid strikeout rate.  The match-up at Seattle is basically always a must start, so ride it here if you are feeling risky.  High K potential versus minimal run worries against Seattle.

Livan Hernandez (3.7%) - Washington at Pittsburgh - I don't like Livan any more than you do, trust me.  It pains me to write his name here as my third choice.  But I can't recommend anyone else above him right now. Livan's strikeout potential isn't too high, but he's been pitching pretty well so far this year.  Pittsburgh's offense isn't too hot, so play Hernandez here if Carmona is unavailable and you don't want to run risk on Ross.

This is the 10-team mixed league line.  Anyone below this line is only recommended for deeper leagues and AL/NL-Only leagues.

Good Pitcher....But Top Six Offenses
Kyle McClellan (19.8%) - St. Louis vs Cincinnati
Anibal Sanchez (38.6%) - Florida vs Colorado
Derek Holland (16.7%) - Texas vs Kansas City
Jeff Francis (6.6%) - Kansas City at Texas
Brian Duensing (6.2%) - Minnesota vs Cleveland
All of these pitchers make solid spot starters most of their times around in the rotation, but they all drew Top Six offenses on the day.  Good spot starting is all about playing the right match-ups.  When you mess around with the power offenses, thats when you have problems.  You are going to want to dodge all of these guys in standard leagues with these bad match-ups, but they stay in your lineups in deep or AL/NL-Only leagues.

Mark Buehrle (16.6%) - Chicago White Sox at Detroit - And here's Buehrle.  As he always is unless he's going up against the dregs of the league, Buehrle is an AL-Only league play here.  He'll give you a decent ERA and WHIP for the season, but can't be relied on for strikeouts.  Detroit has been pretty hot lately, so maybe sit him if you're up in a head-to-head league.

Clayton Richard (6.6%) - San Diego at Philadelphia - Richard is a decent starting option at home in San Diego, but Richard is in Philadelphia on Friday, so that makes him an avoid guy.  You are playing him in your head to head NL-Only leagues, but don't expect too much, and maybe sit him down in roto leagues.

Jo-Jo Reyes (0.1%) - Toronto vs Tampa Bay - The Rays have been winning more lately, but they have been doing more with defense than by scoring runs.  Jo-Jo isn't a great pitcher, but you're starting him here in AL-Only leagues against the Rays.

Nelson Figueroa (0.1%) - Houston at Milwaukee - Figureoa is a strong career K/9 guy so far in his career, but this year his strikeouts are down and he's only performed well against the lowly Padres so far this year.  He's still playing in deep NL-Only leagues on his K-potential, but realize the risk.

Jeff Karstens (0.1%) - Pittsburgh vs Washington - Karstens got blown up in his first start this year against the Reds, but we don't know if he's not going to be a good start this year, or if it's just because he was playing the Reds.  Washington is a better match-up to judge him on here.  Don't play him yet, but keep an eye on the results here.

Joe Saunders (0.2%) - Arizona at New York Mets - Always like a match-up in Citi, but Saunders hasn't had his control so far this year.  He isn't worth a start when he's walking guys like this because he doesn't strike anyone out.  Even with the peachy match-up, he's an avoid here.

Casey Coleman (0.1%) Chicago Cubs vs LA Dodgers - Coleman just doesn't strike out enough guys to be worth starting in any formats, given his pedestrian other numbers.  Even with a peachy match-up against the Dodgers here, there's really no point.

Brad Bergesen (0.0%) Baltimore vs NY Yankees - He's not owned in any leagues, and is playing against the Yankees.  I shouldn't have to say anymore here.

The +9.00 ERA Club
Mike Pelfrey (2.4%) NY Mets vs Arizona - While I do think Pelfrey will turn it around and prove himself a decent spot start candidate at some point this year, I can't recommend you play him until he gets his awful season ERA down.

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