Forgive me if today’s opening topic is a bit of a reach, but it’s September and new ideas are virtually non-existent. That said, I want to take a look at some of the pitchers who have struggled with men on base slash out of the stretch. This is something I’ve come to look at quite often because it helps me identify guys I might otherwise fall for as pitchers to avoid. There have been multiple occasions where I’ve fallen in love with a starter’s above average strikeout and walk skills and failed to recognize that they struggle from the stretch and thus don’t produce an ERA that their K-BB might suggest they are capable of producing.
For that reason alone, the starters in the chart below are guys you should be wary of. However, after I list them, I also want to point out the teams that put men on base most frequently. This is where I may be reaching, but it seems to follow a line of logic that starters who struggle with men on base will struggle more against a team who puts men on base at an above average clip. So the two charts below are seven starters who have struggled with men on base this year and the teams with the best OBPs against right-handed pitching (because all seven starters listed are right-handed). I might avoid these pitchers altogether. But I would definitely avoid them in these match ups.
The Daily Five
Jason Kipnis, $8,479 – To give this post some sort of thematic flow, I’m recommending Kipnis because he’s facing a pitcher in the chart above, Ervin Santana. Hopefully Nick Swisher and his 11.9% BB% will get on base in front of Kipnis, and Santana will exhibit his struggles from the stretch.
Gerardo Parra, $5,270 – Sticking with the theme, I wanted someone with the platoon advantage going against the other starter on the list above going today, Ricky Nolasco. Maybe Parra can take advantage of Nolasco from the stretch hitting from the seven spot.
Mark Trumbo, $7,518 – Trumbo is facing a starter today that I have never heard of, Pedro Hernandez. Hernandez is a left-hander who has struggled in 43.1 IP this year with a 5.19 ERA and a 1.45 HR/9. The platoon advantage against a bad pitcher would be good enough at Trumbo’s price. But they’ll also be playing in some hitter friendly conditions in Minnesota tonight. Game time temperature is 93 degrees, and the wind will be blowing out at 19 mph to left which is Trumbo’s pull direction.
Mike Trout, $10,076 – I’m certainly not going out on a limb recommending Trout, but for the reasons stated above for Trumbo, I think Trout is worth the money today. To be able to afford Trout I used cheap options like Dustin Ackley, Miguel Montero and Taijuan Walker elsewhere.
Kris Medlen, $16,051 – First of all, the Marlins are the opposition. But Medlen has also been pitching really well as of late. Since August started, he has a 2.49 ERA, 23.6% K% and 3% BB% in 43 innings.