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 26.
Wade Davis – In four games in the majors, Davis has a 10.36 K/9 rate, which makes him a good start on strikeout potential alone. Davis has pitched very well in three of his four outings, with the exception coming in a start at Boston. He has two road starts this week, but the latter one comes on the final day of the season in New York with the Yankees likely resting a lot of their stars. Put him in the lineup this week but do not be surprised if he gets held back from his last start due to a concern about innings pitched.
Zach Duke – In his last five games, Duke is 0-4 with an 8.54 ERA. He has allowed five homers in 26.1 innings over that stretch. His starts this week come against LA and CIN, the last two teams he faced. Expect Duke to get lit up in one of those games so keep him on the bench.
Hiroki Kuroda – In his last nine games, Kuroda is 5-1 with a 2.48 ERA and 45 strikeouts in 54.1 innings. He also has seven Quality Starts in that span. Kuroda missed two months at the beginning of the season with a strained oblique, so he has less mileage on him than most pitchers at this point. Additionally, he has only topped 100 pitches in two starts this season, none in the last 13 games. Look for Kuroda to finish the season on a high note and get him in your lineup.
Jeff Niemann – Despite going winless in his last five starts, Niemann is still pitching well at the close of the season. He has a 3.58 ERA in that stretch with 28 Ks in 32.2 IP. Look for him to break into the win column this week with two home starts. At Tropicana Field this year, Niemann is 5-2 with a 2.63 ERA and a 1.156 WHIP.
Anibal Sanchez – After returning from a stint on the 60-day DL with a strained shoulder, Sanchez has pitched very well. He has a 2.58 ERA with 36 strikeouts in 38 innings in his last seven starts. In Sanchez’ last outing, he two-hit the Phillies over eight scoreless innings. Make sure he is active this week.
Other scheduled two-start pitchers in Week 26 are listed below. Please remember that these are projected pitchers and changes can and will happen between now and next week.
Verlander, F. Hernandez, Beckett, Hamels, Jurrjens, Burnett, Dempster, Pineiro, Danks, Feldman, Marquis, E. Santana, Wells, Porcello, Hunter, Blackburn, D. Davis, Bailey, Duensing, Cahill, Masterson, Richmond, Norris, Laffey, Hochevar, Moyer, VandenHurk, Morton, Narverson, Figueroa, Hendrickson, Karstens, Detwiler, Bazardo.
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 24 and how they did.
Garland – Advised to start. 2 W, 1.29 ERA, 6 Ks, 1.14 WHIP (2 starts)
LeBlanc – Advised to start. 1.50 ERA, 5 Ks, 0.67 WHIP (1)
Pavano – Advised to start. 3.46 ERA, 8 Ks, 1.38 WHIP (2)
Snell – Advised to start. W, 2.38 ERA, 6 Ks, 1.32 WHIP (2)
West – Advised to sit. W, 5.23 ERA, 13 Ks, 1.65 WHIP (2)