Everyone is happy when one of their pitchers is scheduled for two starts in a week. But that is not always a good thing. Here are five pitchers you may be on the fence about (or should be on the fence) putting into your lineup for Week 14.
Jose Contreras – In his first five starts of the season, Contreras was 0-5 with an 8.19 ERA. Since then he is 3-2 with a 2.17 ERA and has pitched into the eighth inning in four of his last five starts. Contreras has his highest SO rate (6.18) since 2005 and his walk rate (2.82) is under three for the fourth straight year. His FIP checks in 84 points lower than his ERA. And while his BABIP is a touch low (.285) his 60.4 percent strand rate has room for improvement. Owned in only 25 percent of CBS Sports leagues, Contreras could be a good add for two starts this week.
Jon Garland – A free agent pickup by the Diamondbacks in the off-season, Garland has had a Jekyl-Hyde type season. In road games, Garland has a 2.47 ERA and a 1.275 WHIP. In home games, Garland checks in with a 7.51 ERA and 1.827 WHIP. He has eight starts each home and away. With two home games this week, sit Garland if you can.
Mike Pelfrey – He was very tough in May, with a 2.92 ERA and a 1.200 WHIP. However, June was less kind as he posted a 6.39 ERA in five starts. His last start came Wednesday, the first day in July, and Pelfrey pitched 7.2 innings of scoreless ball along with six strikeouts. Historically, Pelfrey has done his best work in July and August, the only two months in his career where his ERA is below four. He gets two starts at Citi Field this week, where his ERA this year is ¾ of a run lower than his road mark.
Ricky Romero – While the pre-season hype surrounding a rookie Blue Jays pitcher was reserved for Brett Cecil, it has been Romero who has been the biggest contributor. Romero has an impressive 2.54 SO/BB ratio and a very nice 1.24 WHIP. The LHP from California has six straight Quality Starts and is working on a streak of 20 consecutive scoreless innings. Owned in just 22.4 percent of ESPN leagues, check your waiver wire and see if he is available to pick up and insert into your lineup.
Jordan Zimmermann – Our own David Golebiewski has a nice write-up of Zimmermann, one of my favorite rookie pitchers this season. However, you may want to sit him this week if possible. Zimmermann has two road starts in Week 14, and away from Nationals Park he has a 5.40 ERA and a 1.470 WHIP. And not only are they road starts, but Zimmermann will take the mound in Colorado versus the second-highest scoring team in the National League and in Houston, where Minute Maid Park is one of the top HR parks in the majors this season.
Other scheduled two-start pitchers in Week 14 are listed below. Please remember that these are projected pitchers and changes can and will happen between now and next week.
Sabathia, Beckett, Vazquez, Gallardo, J.Johnson, Cain, Hamels, Wainwright, Weaver, Garza, Cueto, Millwood, Kershaw, Jurrjens, Harang, Baker, Pettitte, Happ, Smoltz, Kuroda, Meche, Marquis, Wells, Correia, Washburn, Bergesen, Zito, Hammel, Galarraga, West, Hampton, Vargas, W. Silva, G. Gonzalez, V. Vasquez, Sowers, Holland, Stammen, Chen.
Check back Sunday for an update of two-start pitchers.
Now, I would like to take a step back and provide some accountability for previous picks. There needs to be a two-week time lag because last week’s pitchers have yet to complete their second start. So here are my selections for Week 12 and how they did.
Cahill – Advised to start. W, 6 K, 6.75 ERA, 1.31 WHIP (2 starts)
Cook – Advised to start. 2 W, 8 K 1.20 ERA, 1.00 WHIP (2)
Liriano – Advised to sit. 2 W, 12 k, 3.75 ERA, 1.50 WHIP (2)
Richmond – Advised to sit. W, 3 K, 2.57 ERA, 0.57 WHIP (1)
Wang – Advised to start. W, 7 K, 4.35 ERA, 1.35 WHIP (2)