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 16.
Scott Baker – After missing a start before the All-Star break with a sore elbow, Baker is in line for two starts this week at home against the Indians and Tigers the top two teams in the AL Central. But the Indians are 28-34 since starting off the season 20-8 while the Tigers have played .500 ball over their last 32 games, so neither team is hot. Baker has been outstanding at home this year, where he has a 4-1 record with a 1.97 ERA. While he’s allowed 9 HR in 65 road innings, Baker has permitted just 3 HR in 45.2 IP at home. He is a risky play due to the unknown status of his elbow, but if he is in the lineup you’ll want him in yours to take advantage of the home starts.
Mark Buehrle – A pitcher who traditionally outperforms his xFIP, 2011 is no different for Buehrle, as he has a 3.42 ERA compared to a 4.06 xFIP. After getting knocked around in four of his first five starts, Buehrle has been a reliable pitcher over his last 13 games. He has a 2.72 ERA in that span with 12 Quality Starts. Buehrle has two road starts this week and he has pitched better this year at home. But he goes up against the Royals and Indians. Kansas City is the worst team in the AL while the Indians rank 14th in OPS against LH starters. Look for Buehrle’s strong pitching to continue and keep him in your lineup.
Chris Capuano – This week Capuano has a home-and-home with the Marlins and Clay Hensley. Capuano has a 4.12 ERA this year but he’s been better than that most of the season. In his last 13 games he has a 3.59 ERA with 68 Ks in 77.1 IP. Capuano does not go deep into games but when he keeps the ball in the park he gives his team a chance to win. He’s allowed 13 HR this season and nine of those in his last 77.1 IP. However, the Marlins are 10th in the NL in HR, just under the league average. Neither Sun Life Stadium nor Citi Field is a big HR park so this appears to be a favorable week for Capuano.
Jason Hammel – Perhaps no pitcher in baseball is happier that Interleague play is over than Hammel. In four starts against the AL, Hammel allowed 17 ER in 23 IP for a 6.65 ERA. Against the NL, Hammel has a 3.59 ERA. He has favorable matchups this week with a home start against the inconsistent Derek Lowe and a road start against the very hittable Zach Duke. The Rockies are not as potent in road games as they are in Coors Field but Chase Field is also a good hitter’s park and Colorado is second in the NL with a .758 OPS versus lefty starters. Chances are he’s on the waiver wire in a mixed league and Hammel makes an excellent streaming option this week.
Jason Marquis – In his first 13 games, Marquis was 7-2 with a 3.67 ERA and a 47/23 SO/BB ratio. Since then he’s 0-2 with a 5.26 ERA with 11 BB and 13 Ks in 25.2 IP. His xFIP is still 70 points below his career average, so there’s still plenty of potential regression left for Marquis. He has two road starts this week and his ERA is 4.74 away from home, 1.48 higher than his mark at Nationals Park. If you picked him off the waiver wire, you likely got some good mileage out of Marquis already. But it’s time to quit while you’re ahead and put him on your bench this week.
Other scheduled two-start pitchers in Week 16 are listed below. Please remember that these are projected pitchers and changes can and will happen between now and next week.
Halladay, Lee, Jimenez, A. Sanchez, Liriano, Colon, Pineda, Billingsley, Hellickson, Ogando, Burnett, Vogelsong, Stauffer, Beachy, Lohse, Lowe, Wolf, Gee, Guthrie, Porcello, Collmenter, McDonald, Carmona, Cecil, Lyles, Chatwood, Willis, Duke, Hensley, Lopez, Davies
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 14 pitchers and how they fared.
Lewis – Advised to start. W, 13 Ks, 4.85 ERA, 1.231 WHIP, 13 IP, 7 ER
Marcum – Advised to sit. 9 Ks, 5.25 ERA, 1.500 WHIP, 12 IP, 7 ER
Rodriguez – Advised to start. 9 Ks, 7.94 ERA, 1.765 WHIP, 11.1 IP, 10 ER
Stauffer – Advised to start. W, 2 Ks, 3.00 ERA, 1.417 WHIP, 12.0 IP, 4 ER
Zimmermann – Advised to start. W, 11 Ks, 2.92 ERA, 1.054 WHIP, 12.1 IP, 4 ER