Welcome to the Post-Malone Labor Day edition of the Starting Pitcher Barometer! Hopefully, all went well if you went into labor. It’s also the post-trade deadline edition, so there is a lot to cover. Since the deadline deals have been pretty well covered by now, I’ll touch only very briefly on their impact before moving on to the analysis of the list.

  • Mike Clevinger to San Diego – The back-end of the Padres rotation wasn’t full of Top 100 options, anyway. This is a fairly lateral move for Clev, who has struggled to replicate his 2019 success. He tumbles to 19 this week, but my patience is running short. I’m less optimistic by the week that he’ll get back to anywhere close to those ace-like numbers.
  • Robbie Ray to Buffalo – Ray has an 8.22 BB/9 and 7.51 ERA through 38.1 IP. It’s questionable whether he should even be on the list at this point. Moving to the AL East only moves the needle further down for him. In general, he’ll face tougher lineups in more hitter-friendly ballparks.
  • Ross Stripling to Buffalo – Now known to me as the Buffalo Chicken Strip (yeah, it’s a stretch, but there’s something clever in there somewhere), Stripling also heads to Buffalo to buoy the Jays rotation. It’s a downgrade for Strip, like Ray. He’s been trending down in the rankings as well. He isn’t missing as many bats this year and sits with a 5.68 ERA and 5.05 SIERA.
  • Caleb Smith to Arizona – He’s still out due to COVID and we’ll be lucky at this point to see him for more than a start or two before the end of the season. The Marlins have actually been very successful in developing arms, so it’s actually not a guaranteed positive move to leave Miami. It’s also a park downgrade. He’s still intriguing, but he has to stay healthy (COVID aside).
  • Mike Minor to Oakland – Pitching in Oakland should help Minor lower his 19.6% HR/FB. Even with an HR/FB rate regressed to the mean, he still gets an xFIP of 4.79. He’s not more than a risky streamer in mixed leagues.

 

The Starting Pitcher Barometer

The Old Newcomers

  • Michael Pineda, MIN (SP47) – Big Mike has a shiny 2.77 ERA, 8.31 K/9, and 2.08 BB/9 through his first two starts. Even better is that he has gone six and seven innings in those two starts. Coming into the season ready to roll 6+ innings when many are struggling to even get to six gives him the edge over some of the streaming crowd. His slider has been on point, although his changeup has been a work in progress. He failed to get a single whiff or called strike on the changeup in his latest start against the Tigers. Still, this is a guy who put up a 3.10 ERA over his final 87 IP last year.

  • Tony Gonsolin, LAD (SP53) – With the Buffalo Chicken Strip shipped out of town, Gonsolin has a rotation spot to call home. Through five starts this year (23.2 IP) Gonsolin has a 0.76 ERA, 9.51 K/9, and 1.90 BB/9. His velocity is actually up nearly two ticks to 95 MPH, and his splitter usage is up 11.5% so far. It’s a heavy ground ball pitch that also earns whiffs, but also has a .346 xwOBA. Even if hitters catch up to the splitter, however, he still has an effective slider and curveball to turn to. He’s a streamer who could work his way into full mixed-league ownership before long.

  • Jose Urquidy, HOU (SP61) – Urquidy is finally back after missing the first month-plus of the season due to undisclosed reasons. It was a rough debut against the Angels, going 3.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 2 K. He posted a sturdy 3.95 ERA over 41 innings for the ‘Stros last year and was stellar in the playoffs, as you might recall. He should shake off the rust quickly and garner streaming consideration every time out.

The Rookie Newcomers

  • JT Brubaker, PIT (SP77) – Brubaker is Brubaking up some tasty fantasy pies for us to enjoy! Brubaker wasn’t a particularly highly touted prospect, nor did he put up impressive minor league stats. What he has shown with the Buccos over 25 innings has turned my head, however. He’s been a bit erratic with a 3.96 BB/9 but has been missing bats (9.72 K/9) and he’s been successful, with a 3.96 ERA (4.39 SIERA). His curve has 86th percentile spin at 2,857 RPM with a .071 BAA and .062 wOBA (.217 xwOBA). His slider is another strong offspeed pitch, with a 2,646 RPM spin rate, .237 wOBA (.314 xwOBA), and a 33.3% whiff rate. The fastball is…not great. Increasing his offspeed stuff would go a long way towards keeping the success oven baking away.

  • Trevor Rogers, MIA (SP79) – Rogers hasn’t debuted to a tremendous amount of fanfare despite being a former 13th overall pick. That’s probably just what happens when you play for the Marlins. The tall lefties’ results have been stellar in spite of fanfare levels. Through three starts he has totaled 15 innings, posting a 3.00 ERA (3.91 SIERA), 12.6 K/9, and 4.80 BB/9. He has a pungent fastball/slider/changeup mix that can miss bats. The command can come and go, which is why he’s debuting towards the back-end of the list.
  • Deivi Garcia, NYY (SP81) – I’ve always been on the pessimistic side of the Deivi Garcia: Starting Pitcher debate. A 5’9″ righty with huge control problems leads me to believe he’s a reliever long-term. Terrific stuff is why some consider him a dynamic starting candidate. A mix of the stuff, results, and a rotation spot (for the time being, at least) have him debuting on the list this week. Through two starts (10.2 IP) he has a 3.38 ERA (3.57 SIERA), and 12:2 K:BB ratio. If the control remains as good as it has been…look out. He could be a true impact starter. I’ll have to see more of this control to be totally sold, but if you’re in a competitive league, it’s probably best to buy now.

The Top 100 Starting Pitchers

RnkNamePrevious Rank
1Jacob DeGrom2
2Gerrit Cole1
3Shane Bieber3
4Aaron Nola5
5Yu Darvish6
6Trevor Bauer7
7Clayton Kershaw9
8Luis Castillo8
9Max Scherzer4
10Sonny Gray10
11Lucas Giolito12
12Walker Buehler11
13Zac Gallen18
14Lance Lynn16
15Brandon Woodruff15
16Blake Snell17
17Jack Flaherty19
18Chris Paddack14
19Mike Clevinger13
20Kenta Maeda22
21Zack Greinke26
22Charlie MortonNR
23Max Fried20
24Aaron Civale23
25Jose Berrios28
26Dylan Bundy24
27Zack Wheeler25
28Dinelson Lamet27
29Hyun-Jin Ryu29
30Carlos Carrasco30
31Tyler Glasnow32
32Patrick Corbin21
33Corbin Burnes39
34Zach PlesacNR
35Pablo Lopez37
36Sixto Sanchez35
37Dallas Keuchel43
38Kyle Hendricks31
39Jesus Luzardo38
40German Marquez34
41Yusei Kikuchi48
42Zach Davies46
43Dustin May36
44Framber Valdez44
45Kevin Gausman41
46Lance McCullers, Jr33
47Michael PinedaNR
48Brad Keller45
49Sandy Alcantara59
50Dane Dunning51
51Garrett Richards49
52Ian Anderson55
53Tony GonsolinNR
54Merrill Kelly47
55Spencer Turnbull42
56Zach Eflin65
57Frankie Montas40
58Julio Urias63
59Randy Dobnak60
60Tyler Mahle68
61Jose UrquidyNR
62Tommy Milone58
63Masahiro Tanaka81
64Chris Bassitt56
65Triston McKenzie61
66Andrew Heaney67
67Nathan Eovaldi64
68Dakota Hudson69
69Adrian Houser53
70Adam Wainwright78
71Ryan Yarbrough70
72Christian Javier71
73Rich Hill72
74Robbie Ray62
75Casey Mize57
76Marco Gonzales96
77JT BrubakerNR
78Antonio Senzatela74
79Trevor RogersNR
80Seth LugoNR
81Deivi GarciaNR
82Taijuan Walker76
83Matt Boyd82
84Mike Fiers90
85Taylor ClarkeNR
86Kwang Hyun KimNR
87Ross Stripling66
88Justus Sheffield79
89Keegan AkinNR
90Sean Manaea91
91Jordan Montgomery73
92Luke Weaver83
93Griffin Canning84
94Johnny Cueto75
95Mike Minor86
96Chad Kuhl77
97Josh Lindblom80
98Anthony DeSclafani85
99Josh Fleming93
100Dylan Cease89

Fell Off The List

Elieser Hernandez (injury), Tyler Chatwood (injury), Touki Toussaint (minors), Kyle Freeland (performance), Kyle Gibson (performance), Logan Webb (performance), Danny Duffy (performance), John Means (performance), Kris Bubic (performance), Asher Wojciechowski (performance), Tarik Skubal (performance).