Here are this week’s recommendations, with ownership figures help from @GabeEikum:
Eric Stults – 24.6% ESPN/33% Yahoo! – v. PHI (.305 team wOBA), @MIA (.271)
Hopefully this will be a better go-round for Stults than last time he was recommended, which was back in week two when he went 1-1 with a 5.54 ERA. But he most certainly has been better of late, allowing more than three earned runs only once in his last 10 starts, and allowing two or less in five straight and eight of his last 10.
Stults gets it done in the air and on the ground, with 40-plus percent marks in both areas. That leaves little left for line drives — 17.5% — and isn’t particularly worrisome since he plays half his games at spacious Petco. The increase in grounders — 42.1% this year versus career mark of 39.2% — simply makes him a better play in weeks where he doesn’t get to start both games at home. So while he’s been a tremendous start at home — 2.95 FIP — he hasn’t been all that bad on the road either — 3.62.
Oddly, Stults has found more success the past two seasons with a fastball that keeps tumbling. Since peaking at 90.6 mph in a brief 2011 stint with the Rockies, he’s sat in the 80s the past two seasons, with this year’s 86.4 mark the bottom of the barrel.
This week’s matchups are terrific for the lefty, leaving him with a good chance to continue the roll that he and the Friars have been on.
Kevin Correia – 3.1% ESPN/8% Yahoo! – @MIA (.271), v. KC (.298)
There’s nothing at all sexy about Correia has brought to the table for the Twins this year, but as far as what I’ve seen/heard, everyone’s OK with that. At +0.4 WAR, he’s more or less on pace to provide the value the club should have expected in handing him a deal that’ll pay him $10 million over the next two years.
From a raw numbers standpoint, he doesn’t strike anyone out — though he oddly carries a 9.5 K/9 mark in his last three starts — but his sub-4.00 ERA and 46.2% groundball rate make him a steady back-end option in terms of real-life utility.
As far as fantasy utility, this is just a chance to take advantage this week of a couple of really good matchups for the right-hander.
Esmil Rogers – 0.8% ESPN/3% Yahoo! – @TB (.329), @BOS (.341)
The draw with Rogers here is nothing other than a guy running through the league for the first time as a starter. Rogers throws plenty hard (94.6 mph career average) and over his career has missed his fair share of bats (7.7 K/9). He also gets decent groundball rates (42% and up in his career), so I don’t think I’d be alone in seeing at least SOME projection here. He was, however, really bad as a starter in Colorado in 2011, so there are no guarantees here.
But ultimately, there aren’t a lot of other 2xSP options this week. But I’ve made my bed, so it’s time to lay in it now.
Week 1: 1-3, 30 IP, 3.00 ERA, 5.4 K/9, 2.3 K/BB, 1.13 WHIP (Kevin Slowey, Ubaldo Jimenez, Joe Saunders)
Week 2: 2-3, 25.1 IP, 5.69 ERA, 6.8 K/9, 2.4 K/BB, 1.74 WHIP (Joe Blanton, James McDonald, Eric Stults)
Week 3: 1-2, 32 IP, 3.66 ERA, 7.9 K/9, 3.1 K/BB, 1.22 WHIP (Wade Davis, Carlos Villanueva, Patrick Corbin)
Week 4: 2-1, 22 IP, 6.14 ERA, 7.8 K/9, 2.1 K/BB, 1.95 WHIP (Julio Teheran, Jason Hammel, Garrett Richards)
Week 5: 2-2, 30 IP, 3.60 ERA, 5.4 K/9, 1.6 K/BB, 1.23 WHIP (Scott Diamond, Nick Tepesch, Andrew Cashner)
Week 6: 2-3, 32.2 IP, 4.96 ERA, 5.5 K/9, 2.0 K/BB, 1.44 WHIP (Justin Grimm, Juan Nicasio, Hector Santiago)
Week 7: 1-0, 29 IP, 3.41 ERA, 6.8 K/9, 1.8 K/BB, 1.34 WHIP (Julio Teheran, Phil Hughes, Scott Kazmir)
Week 8: 1-0, 34.2 IP, 4.93 ERA, 7.0 K/9, 4.5 K/BB, 1.27 WHIP (Jhoulys Chacin, Kevin Slowey, Dan Straily)
Week 9: 3-1, 34 IP, 2.65 ERA, 7.4 K/9, 4.0 K/BB, 0.94 WHIP (John Danks, Andrew Cashner, Chris Tillman)
Week 10: 4-0, 35.2 IP, 2.27 ERA, 5.6 K/9, 3.7 K/BB, 1.12 WHIP (Tony Cingrani, Corey Kluber, John Lackey)
Week 11*: 0-1, 18.2 IP, 4.82 ERA, 5.3 K/9, 1.8 K/BB, 1.13 WHIP (Dillon Gee, Dan Straily, Ubaldo Jimenez)
Total: 19-16 (.543), 324 IP, 3.97 ERA, 6.4 K/9, 2.5 K/BB, 1.30 WHIP
League Averages: .496 win percentage, 4.05 ERA, 7.2 K/9, 2.6 K/BB, 1.29 WHIP