Updates on four rotation spots, all in the NL…
Chad Billingsley | Dodgers | 87% owned
Just off a groin strain induced DL stint, Billingsley comes back just in time to face the Giants in San Francisco tonight. He was dealing with some bad BABIP (.332) and strand rate (69.2%) luck prior to going on the shelf, but (R) ZiPS projects a 3.41 ERA (3.38 FIP) with just shy of a strikeout per inning the rest of the way. After tonight, he lines up to start in Arizona and at home against the Cubs before All Star break.
Madison Bumgarner | Giants | 8%
The allure of top prospects can be too much to pass up at times. Bumgarner’s velocity mysteriously disappeared last season and really hasn’t returned yet, and to no surprise he’s yet to return to the 9.00 K/9 range once predicted for him. He held his own against the Red Sox in a losing cause yesterday (7 IP, 4 ER), but it’s hard to predict anything more than a mid-4.00’s ERA the rest of the way unless he bumps up the 6.4 K/9 he showed in Triple-A this season. His three starts before the break come at the Rockies, at Milwaukee, and at the Nationals.
Tom Gorzelanny | Cubs | 4%
Not only is Carlos Zambrano suspended indefinitely, but he’s headed back to the bullpen whenever he does return. Gorzelanny has pitched surprisingly well this season after some ugly years in Pittsburgh, posting a 3.41 ERA (3.82 xFIP) with more than a strikeout per inning. (R) ZiPS unsurprisingly sees a slight step back the rest of the way, but there’s no shame in having a 4.33 ERA (4.02 FIP), 7.75 K/9 pitcher on your staff. Gorz’s final three starts before the break comes against his former team, then at the D-Backs and at the Dodgers.
Bud Norris | Astros | 3%
Norris hit the DL with some biceps tendinitis, but returns to face the Brew Crew in Milwaukee tonight. His ERA was an unsightly 6.80 before the injury, but his peripherals were stellar: 4.03 xFIP, 11.13 K/9. Once his .400 BABIP and 58.9% LOB% regress back to normalcy, you’d got yourself a rock solid fantasy starter, albeit without many wins. (R) ZiPS predicts a 4.83 ERA (4.25 FIP), 8.61 K/9 the rest of the way, and after tonight he’ll start in San Diego and at home against the Cardinals before the break.
Ownership rates based on Yahoo! leagues.