Pitching Preview: 4/6

Pitching Preview: 4/6

Pitchers to Use

JA Happ

Happ is the guy I want to pay up for if I am paying up today. He struggled in his first outing against the Orioles to start the year, but that won’t be an every outing occurrence. The Orioles have one of the weakest lineups in baseball and they are striking out at about 27% against lefties to start the year.

Pair that with Happ’s 27% K rate last year and you have solid upside for Happ in this matchup. The issue that Happ has is he gives up homers to right handed bats. The Orioles don’t possess too much power, so it isn’t as much of a concern here. Look for Happ to bounce back.

Dylan Bundy

This is gross. Recommending Bundy against the Yankees makes me want to throw up. That is how brutal the pitching options are on this slate though.

Bundy had a serious home run issue last year as he allowed over 2 HR/9. However, his K rate to righties was 31%, which is the only reason I am even considering him here. The Yankees are dealing with a ton of injuries, and they should roll out a right handed heavy lineup that is weaker than normal. Even if Bundy gives up a couple runs, if he can approach double digit Ks, he would be worth it on this ugly pitching slate.

Corbin Burnes

Burnes showed elite K upside in his last start striking out 12 hitters in only five innings against a very tough Cardinals team. The damage against Burnes came via the long ball as he gave up 4 runs on three homers. If he can minimize the long ball here against the Cubs, they are a team that will strikeout as they are full of free swingers.

Again, this spot isn’t ideal, but when we have slates with bad pitching, we need to just take shots on guys that have the high K upside and Burnes has that. I believe this elite K upside could be here to stay as his spin rates in his first start were insanely higher than his pitches last year. His fastball jumped from a spin rate of 2559 last year to 2912 in the first start and his slider jumped from 2677 to 3142. Take advantage of this possible breakout before it becomes mainstream!

Pitchers to Pick On

Luke Weaver

Weaver who has been labeled a prospect has never translated to success at the major league level. He actually has become an arm we can regularly pick on. He has high hard contact rates, low strikeout rates and high walk rates. These are all things we look for when wanting to stack against a pitcher. He also gives up a homers as he gave up 1.4 HR/9 to lefties last year and 1.1 to righties.

On top of all of this, the DBacks bullpen is terrible. So if the Red Sox can get to Weaver early, they should be in for a big night. They showed a bit of life last night, so hopefully that carries over to today.

Cole Hamels

With Quintana, Lester and Hamels in the rotation, the Cubs are playing as if the year is 2014. We can continue to use the white hot Brew Crew squad that is just mashing every pitcher they face. They possess a lot of power right handers as well as lefties who hit lefties well. The Cubs bullpen has also been very bad for when Hamels gets yanked early. Hamels gave up 27 homers last year to righties which was good for 1.55 HR/9. Keep riding the Brewer hot streak. With Coors on the slate, the Brewers could be much lower owned than they should be.

Jon Gray

The key to Jon Gray is pretty simple. You stack against him with lefties in Coors and you use him outside of Coors against righty heavy teams. The Dodgers are the absolute worst matchup for Gray. They should be everyone’s top stack tonight and should be your cash stack. The Dodgers are on fire right now too, so get as much exposure to them as you can.

Aaron Brooks

We don’t know too much about Brooks, but we do know he is a guy who pitches to contact with very minimal K upside. The Astros present a ton of power throughout their lineup, so using them against a pitcher who lets you put the ball in play is ideal. Brooks has never really had much success at any level, so this is a spot that should interest you.

High-Risk High Reward

David Price

Price is going to end up in this section a good amount this year. He is a guy who is prone to giving up homers, but also has decent strikeout upside. He isn’t among the elite though as his whiff rate was only 23% last year (the elite pitchers are in the mid 30s).

The reason he is down here today is because the DBacks are white hot right now and they have some right handed bats with pop.

Price is also the pitcher with the most name value on this slate as there is no true ace available tonight. Just by default, I expect him to be the highest owned pitcher and I never really have heavy interest in Price when he is going to be chalk.