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 17
Jon Garland – Earlier in the year it was pretty easy with Garland. You simply benched him for his home starts and inserted him back in the lineup for his road outings. But Garland in his last five starts has a 2.73 ERA and two of those games have been at home and both were Quality Starts. A home start versus Philadelphia could be dicey, but that should be made up for in a road start in pitcher-friendly Citi Field against the punchless Mets.
Tommy Hunter – After getting pounded in his major league debut last season, Hunter has had an impressive five outings for the Rangers in 2009. And yes, he has unquestionably been lucky so far, with a .256 BABIP and an 87 percent strand rate. But I like the 23-year old to maintain his good fortune for at least one more week with home starts against the Tigers and Mariners.
Jason Marquis – Usually I avoid recommending starting the top pitchers. But since not everyone has gotten the memo on Marquis, I figured I would mention him. Can anyone else remember a season where the NL leader in wins after the All-Star break might be available on the waiver wire in your league? Marquis is a free agent in 51.5 percent of ESPN leagues. He does have a blister problem but is scheduled this week for road starts at the Mets and at the Reds.
Joe Saunders – Through the first 15 games of the season, Saunders was living large and was cruising along with an 8-4 record and 3.66 ERA despite rotten peripherals, continuing his path from 2008. But in his last five outings Saunders has a 9.82 ERA and only some fine work by Angels hitters have kept his record at 0-2. Maybe it is a bad stretch or maybe it is regression finally catching up to him, but either way it is hard to put him in the lineup this week for two starts.
Randy Wolf – After undergoing a rough patch in June, Wolf has rebounded with five straight Quality Starts with 25 Ks in 31.2 innings in that stretch. His peripherals still suggest a pitcher benefiting from luck, but owners should role the dice with Wolf this week. He has two road starts, but has been a better pitcher away from Chavez Ravine. Wolf has a 4-2 record with a 2.90 ERA in road games this year, a full run lower than his home ERA.
Other scheduled two-start pitchers in Week 17 are listed below. Please remember that these are projected pitchers and changes can and will happen between now and next week.
Sabathia, Lincecum, Wainwright, F. Hernandez, Hamels, Burnett, Beckett, Carpenter, Oswalt, Billingsley, Zambrano, Weaver, Jurrjens, W. Rodriguez, Nolasco, Shields, Harden, Danks, Washburn, Romero, Arroyo, Pelfrey, Buchholz, Galarraga, Maholm, Zito, Correia, Bannister, Pavano, Moyer, O. Perez, Cahill, Perkins, Padilla, Suppan, H. Bailey, Mazzaro, Stammen, Geer, Hill, Burns, Berken, Chen.
Check back Sunday for an update of two-start pitchers.