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 11.
Bronson Arroyo – A 17-game winner a year ago, Arroyo has struggled through most of 2011. Nowhere has he struggled more than with the gopher ball, as Arroyo has allowed 16 HR in 75 IP. Eleven of those have come in his home park and this week the Reds host Jose Bautista and the Toronto Blue Jays. Arroyo has a road start in Dodger Stadium, where in six games lifetime he is 1-3 with a 4.85 ERA. Leave him on the bench this week if you have the depth.
Zach Britton – One of the top rookie pitchers, Britton has held his own pitching in the AL East. He’s been a little lucky with his BABIP (.260) and strand rate (75.7%) but has been a solid pitcher, with a 3.88 xFIP. However, Britton has a large L/R split, as the southpaw has held LHB to a .556 OPS this season. This week he has two road starts (4.94 road ERA so far this year) and he goes up against the Blue Jays, who lead the AL with an .880 OPS against LH starters and the Nationals, who are last in the NL with a .613 OPS against LH starters. Washington is missing Ryan Zimmerman versus lefties but Mike Morse is starting to hit and Jayson Werth has been better over his last three weeks (faint praise). Hold out Britton this week if you have other options.
Josh Collmenter – A 15th round draft pick in 2007, Collmenter is one of the top surprise stories of the year. He is 4-1 with a 1.12 ERA and fantasy owners have been snapping him off the waiver wire the past four weeks. Collmenter basically throws just two pitches and one of them is an 86.7 mph fastball. He succeeds thanks to an unusual delivery and pinpoint control. At some point it seems logical that hitters will adjust to his delivery. But this week he has two home starts and goes up against an AL team and the Giants, against whom he has thrown only two innings. Ride Collmenter in your lineup for another week.
Justin Masterson – It looked like Masterson turned the corner at the beginning of the season, as he began with a 5-0 record with a 2.11 ERA. But in his last six outings, he’s 0-4 with a 4.43 ERA, despite allowing just 2 HR in 40.2 IP. Masterson has done a fine job limiting HR this year and has improved his walks, going from a 3.65 BB/9 in 2010 to a 2.77 mark this year. But he still struggles against LHB (.794 OPS) and his 6.26 K/9 is a career low. The matchups seem okay on the surface, but both the Pirates and Tigers are better than they were a year ago. Sit Masterson if you can.
Carl Pavano – After posting a 6.64 ERA in his first seven games, Pavano has bounced back nicely in his last six outings. He’s posted a 2.49 ERA in that span and has allowed just 2 HR in 43.1 IP. Pavano has two home starts this week and at Target Field he has a 3.06 ERA, a full 2.5 runs lower than his road mark. Additionally, Pavano has allowed just 1 HR at home this year, compared to six in road parks. Make sure Pavano is in your linep this week.
Other scheduled two-start pitchers in Week 11 are listed below. Please remember that these are projected pitchers and changes can and will happen between now and next week.
Verlander, Gallardo, Sabathia, Hamels, Jurrjens, Cain, J. Garcia, Shields, Ogando, Haren, Nolasco, Burnett, Floyd, Kuroda, Lowe, Norris, Dempster, Wolf, Niese, Vargas, W. Rodriguez, Villanueva, Carrasco, Pelfrey, Duffy, Maholm, Moseley, Wells, Duke, Karstens, Wakefield, Coke, Cobb, Volstad, Outman, Cook, Maya
Check back Sunday night for an update of two-start pitchers.
Now I want to provide some accountability and check in and see how previous recommendations turned out. There needs to be a two-week lag, since last week’s pitchers have not completed their second start yet. So here are Week 7 pitchers and how they fared.
Bedard – Advised to start. 14 Ks, 3.38 ERA, 1.200 WHIP, 13.1 IP, 5 ER
Bumgarner – Advised to sit. W, 11 Ks, 1.929 ERA, 1.143 WHIP, 14 IP, 3 ER
Carmona – Advised to sit. 5 Ks, 9.58 ERA, 1.839 WHIP, 10.1 IP, 11 ER
Morton – Advised to sit. W, 9 Ks, 2.08 ERA, 1.462 WHIP, 13 IP, 3 ER
Santana – Advised to start. 8 Ks, 6.23 ERA, 1.615 ERA, 13 IP, 9 ER