Stream, Stream, Stream: A 2013 2xSP Review

With another regular season fully in arrears, now is a good time to look back on the season that was for 2xSP.

This was the second season I covered two-start guys for Rotographs, and this year I kept meticulous records on a Google Drive spreadsheet for all to behold. 

I think that was a pretty solid upgrade, but if there are things you think can be done better, I’m all ears. Please leave suggestions below.

Here’s a breakdown of the season:

41-47 record

The record was obviously not idea, as I was hoping for a .500 mark. But even though we as analysts don’t really care much about the win for starting pitchers, it’s still something we have to seek out as fantasy writers.

Ultimately, I’ll look for pitchers that will be put in good situations to win, but I’ll admit it’s not going to be the first qualification I look at.

3.77 ERA

This is probably the mark I’m most proud of, as the ERA hung at 4.00-4.20 for a good part of the season. A six-week run to end the season where the worst ERA was a 3.27 mark (9.2-9.8) definitely helped in that respect.

For some context, a 3.77 ERA would fall 53rd among all qualified starters, with starters like Jon Lester, Andy Pettitte, and A.J. Griffin in that proximity.

6.8 K/9, 2.5 K/BB

This is not a particularly high mark, but not bad either. The 6.8 per 9 mark would rate 57th among qualified starters, right behind Doug Fister and ahead of Jordan Zimmermann. The major league average for starters in 2013 was 7.2, which is where I’d have preferred to be.

A lot of weeks I’d look for strikeout-types, but every now and then there’s a safer matchup with a Jake Westbrook-type that’s hard not take on.

The K/BB rate is pretty much exactly in line with the major league average for starters, and in a lot of ways maybe isn’t something fantasy players look all that much at in my opinion.

1.28 WHIP

The league mark for was 1.31, so not too bad of a mark for just grabbing readily available pitchers, huh?

Best Week

This is awfully hard to judge, but I’d have to go with week 22 (9.9-9.15) which featured Ubaldo Jimenez, Gerrit Cole, and Martin Perez. Perez lost twice, but Cole and Jimenez were so good that the unit went 4-2 with a 2.01 ERA, 8.7 K/9, and a solid 1.22 WHIP.

Worst Week

Again, a few contenders, but week 16 (7.29-8.4) was particularly bad. That week, Felix Doubront, Brandon Beachy, and Westbrook combined to go 1-3 with a 5.91 ERA. The week wasn’t a total loss, however, as the trio combined to fan 7.0 per 9.


I’d like to think overall it was a successful season of recommendations. Definitely not an A by any means, but maybe a solid B/B+. Again, please leave your suggestions, criticisms, and praise below!

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In addition to Rotographs, Warne is a Minnesota Twins beat reporter for 105 The Ticket's Cold Omaha website as well as a sportswriter for Sportradar U.S. in downtown Minneapolis. Follow him on Twitter @Brandon_Warne, or feel free to email him to do podcasts or for any old reason at brandon.r.warne@gmail-dot-com

10 Responses to “Stream, Stream, Stream: A 2013 2xSP Review”

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  1. ImKeithHernandez says:

    Pretty solid results. I’m a pretty consistent streamer, so I usually make my own evaluations, but this column was a great resource. I’m sure this is a lot of work, so thanks for the help (I won my primary league)! Looking forward to seeing this in 2014.

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  2. Joe says:

    How would Gerrit Cole be a streamer though? He should have been owned in every league.

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    • FanGraphs Supporting Member

      He was sub-50% ownership at that time. That’s been the (self-imposed) rule all season, and pretty much all of last year.

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    • FeslenR says:

      Even in my 12-man league Cole was drafted but left unknown when the original drafter was impatient with him. I plucked him up and had him for 6 starts before dealing him high. (I was already in 4th by that time).

      I got into streaming a little too much this year, but it’s okay. Streaming is fun…and I also did fairly well with it-aside from a few clunky starts.

      Good write up Brandon.

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  3. Ruki Motomiya says:

    Is it weird that I find it easier to plug/stream hitters than stream pitchers?

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    • ImKeithHernandez says:

      I rarely feel the need to stream hitters, because I build my teams offense first, but I agree. Picking up Eric Young for the last day of the season won me steals (he got two!), and was almost the difference between me winning or losing the finals.

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  4. Mark says:

    Don’t compare your k/9 rate to the league avg. that mark includes pitchers who would not be available in any league. No way you are streaming Darvish, Scherzer or Burnett. 6.8 is pretty respectable for 2 starts. That’s 13-14 strikeouts in a week

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  5. Brad Johnson says:
    FanGraphs Supporting Member

    As a fellow streaming column writer, 2013 was a golden year for streaming. Borderline elite pitchers like Corey Kluber, Danny Salazar, Sonny Gray, Ivan Nova, and Alex Wood spent most of their seasons well below the 50% ownership rate (most of them spent the majority of their MLB tenure below 25%). I’ve never had half so many pitchers that I could not only recommend for a start but strongly advise to pick up and use in against any team. And they were available week after week.

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