Thursday's Recommendations' Stats - Kyle McClellan - 5.2 Innings Pitched - 2 Strikeouts - Win - 7.94 ERA - 1.77 WHIP
Week Four Cumulative Stats - 25 Innings Pitched - 13 Strikeouts - 4.68 K/9 - 2 Win in 4 Starts - 5.76 ERA - 1.48 WHIP
Cumulative Total Stats - 201.2 Innings Pitched - 153 Strikeouts - 6.83 K/9 - 14 Wins in 33 Starts - 3.70 ERA - 1.20 WHIP
Starter Spreadsheet Online Here
It was a weak starting pitcher day Thursday and McClellan was just one example of that. My second recommendation, Baker, ended up being pushed back to Friday, and the only good starts that came from anyone were Jeff Niemann and Carlos Carrasco. McClellan didn't do much else, but he did squeak out a win because of the amazing Cardinal offense. It's been a rough week, but as we get into the weekend we have a few solid spot choices coming up Saturday and Sunday, and we'll make up this bad week yet. Fridays starter coming up...
Daisuke Matsuzaka - Boston Red Sox vs Seattle Mariners - 7:10 PM EDT - 22.5% Owned in ESPN Standard Leagues
Like I said above, there are some very good options on the docket for Saturday and Sunday, but for Friday we are rolling the Dice-K. Daisuke is coming off a pair of great starts, and is drawing the Mariners on Friday night. The Mariners were hot in their last series against the Tigers, but it was just one series. The Mariners are still the Mariners, and scored a quarter of the runs they scored this year were in that last series. He's not going to do any worse than McClellan or McCarthy earlier this week, and is coming off a pair of shut outs. He'll strike guys out either way, so ride him today on a weak Friday.
It's a weak day today, but as always, the guys are listed in the order I would start them. I don't really have a problem with any of the guys above the line here if you need someone, but I'm calling Dice-K my recommendation here. As always, standard ESPN mixed-league ownership percentages are in parenthesis.
Scott Baker (25.1%) - Minnesota at Kansas City - Baker has been nearly as good as Dice-K in his last two starts, but doesn't get the recommendation here because of each player's match-up. Matsuzaka gets the Seattle offense, while Baker runs up on the still booming Kansas City offense. Baker is your choice if you are afraid of the risk with Dice-K, but watch the KC offense.
Carlos Zambrano (38.7%) - Chicago Cubs at Arizona - Big Z had his first unredeemable game last time out against the Dodgers, breaking a 10 game win streak. Zambrano hasn't been shutting offenses down, but he's been getting strikeouts and wins so far. He has a shot at both again here and is almost recommended here on a weak day, but Arizona's offense has been hot this year, in the top third of the league. Zambrano will be a mixed bag here, but it's that kind of day.
Freddy Garcia (12.9%) - NY Yankees vs Toronto - Garcia has been good in the last two starts for the Yankees, but I don't feel as strongly about him as I did about Bartolo Colon the other day. Garcia doesn't strike too many guys out and his BABIP has been amazingly lucky so far this year. He's got a shot to keep it up and as always with the Yankees has a shot at a win, but don't get too excited.
Bruce Chen (16.2%) - Kansas City vs Minnesota - Chen has been better more often than not so far this year, and his bad outing last time out came against the powerful Rangers lineup in Texas. He has the slumping Minnesota lineup here Friday, and Chen is good enough to get things done against them. Like Baker more, but Chen is start-able if you are chasing categories here late in the week.
Clayton Richard (3.9%) - San Diego at LA Dodgers - Richard has had a very tough schedule so far early in the year, but his stats still have been pretty solid. Richard should be able to provide another strong start here against the Dodgers, and if you need someone and no one else is available in your mixed league, he's passable.
Jake Arrieta (1.0%) - Baltimore at Chicago White Sox - Arrieta has looked good in four of five starts this year including a pair against the Yankees, with just the blemish against the Rangers on his record. The White Sox have been slumping hard, and Arrieta is going to be usable on a rough day here Friday if you need a shot at solid innings.
It's a horrible day, but the line is lower today for those who are chasing in head to head leagues late in the week. Only recommend guys above the line for 10-team mixed leagues, everyone below is recommended for deeper or AL/NL-Only leagues.
Vance Worley (0.0%) - Philadelphia vs NY Mets - He looked good in a cup of coffee in the majors last year and has looked good so far this year in AAA. He is a solid strikeout pitcher, but I'd like to see him once here before I recommend him. I like him in any NL-Only league here, but don't think he's quite over the line.
Jason Marquis (3.1%) - Washington vs San Francisco - Marquis has put up a quality start in each of his four starts so far this year, but that was with ugly WHIP and not too many strikeouts. He'll have some value if the Nationals pick up the win here, but you're only starting him in your NL-Only leagues.
Ervin Santana (32.4%) - LA Angels at Tampa Bay - Santana has been horrible so far this year, but he's still starting in your AL-Only leagues because of his potential talent. Tampa Bay has been streaking this last week though, so it's an AL-Only play only especially with the way has been pitching.
Stay Away Match-Ups
Kevin Correia (22.1%) - Pittsburgh at Colorado
Javier Vazquez (4.4%) - Florida at Cincinnati
Mike Pelfrey (1.0%) - NY Mets at Philadelphia
These three guys are all decent spot start choices on some days, but they all have match-ups against good offenses in hitter's parks. I'm not starting any of them today unless i really need the help in my NL-Only leagues.
Jason Vargas (0.3%) - Seattle at Boston - The match-up against Boston isn't too great, and Vargas hasn't been good and hasn't gotten any good run support. I'm avoiding him here in AL-Only leagues, though still keeping a long-term eye on him.
Armando Galarraga (1.5%) - Arizona vs Chicago Cubs - Galarraga has three wins on the year, but hasn't had any very good starts. He's playable if you need him in your NL leagues, but don't if you don't have to.
Jeanmar Gomez (0.1%) - Cleveland vs Detroit - Gomez has pitched twice so far this year, and had one awful start and one average relief appearance. I have no interest with him here.