Nope. I'm not writing about Chien-Ming Wang. This has nothing to do with CMW. This has nothing to do with golf either. Why did I title this Chien-Ming Golf Wang? Because. That's why. We're going to chop it up, potpourri style. You'll find an assortment of fantasy goodness after the jump. "Jay Bruce is a demi-god" on three. One... Two... Break!
We had 23 Starting Pitchers who posted a .250 or lower BABIP after the first month of baseball. We're now down to 15 lucky souls. Most notable are Alexi Ogando, Justin Verlander, Jhoulys Chacin, Jeremy Hellickson, Josh Johnson, Josh Beckett, A.J. Burnett, Tim Hudson, Jered Weaver and Michael Pineda. I doubt you'll have much luck selling on Josh Tomlin, Phil Humber, Kyle Lohse, Matt Harrison or Luke Hochevar, but you can try. Of all these pitchers only two have a LD% above 20%; Josh Tomlin and Alexi Ogando. These have been Major League Baseball's luckiest pitchers. Alexi Ogando has a below average K/9 (6.44), I'd be shopping him like a mofo. I've seen people slobbering all over him in message boards, you shouldn't have that difficult a time finding a buyer. Take note: Tim Hudson was one of four SP who had a BABIP of .250 or better in 2010. Hudson has that rare ability to induce a lot of ground balls and limit line drives. If he had a K/9 above 8.00, he'd be one of the best pitchers in baseball.
On the opposite side of the BABIP spectrum, we have 13 Starting Pitchers who have a BABIP of .320 or worse. These include: Matt Garza, Edwin Jackson, Chris Carpenter, Cliff Lee, Derek Holland, Daniel Hudson, Jo-Jo Reyes, Max Scherzer, Tim Stauffer, Ryan Dempster, Brian Duensing, Ricky Nolasco and Chris Narveson. Three of these SP have a LD% below 20%; Daniel Hudson, Brian Duensing and Jo-Jo. These pitchers have had the worst luck of all SP in the league. I wouldn't want to mess with Duensing or Jo-Jo so we're calling Daniel Hudson our best buy low option out there. Hudson is racking up the strikeouts (8.00 K/9) and limiting free passes (2.38 BB/9), line drives (18.4% LD%) and home runs (3.6% HR/FB%, 6.1% career LD%). That's all I want from a pitcher. Daniel-san was roughed up a bit by the Cobra Kai of Florida tonight (7 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 3 K), but I'm still rocking the bandanna.
What else happened on Wednesday...
Jay Bruce hit No. 17. Someone warn Jose Bautista. I took some flack for projecting a .295 batting average for Jay heading into the season. Guess what. He's hitting .292 right now. Swag! For all the slugging Jay is doing, it'd be nice to see the LD% creep up closer to 20%. It's at 11% so his .310 BABIP could be viewed as a tad on the lucky side. He's a line drive machine though so I'm not worried. Jay Bruce is a demi-god. Isn't it lovely to see Bruce and demi used in the same sentence again?
Laynce Nix went yard. Laynce strong armed his 9th HR of the season at the expense of Roy Oswalt. Roy was one of the pitchers who fell off our .250 or better BABIP list from March/April. Starbonell dropped Nix in Blog Wars and I came in and scooped him up. Nix has three HR in his past four games. If you want some high maintainence (no AB vs LHP) 25 HR potential with a poor batting average, I approve of adding Laynce Nix.
Colby Lewis got back on track, he shutout Tampa through eight innings (4 H, 2 BB, 8 K). The fastball averaged 89 mph, according to Brooks Baseball, so it's still down a bit from '10 (90 mph). If you look at Lewis' velocity chart from last season you'll see his fastball velocity rising and falling in the early season and then flattening out to where it's at now. Maybe we should have seen this coming. There is something to take notice of though. During Lewis' last 13 starts (when his velocity flattened out) he was still rocking a 9.70 K/9. This season he's pushing a 6.31 K/9. Colby may have a 1.15 WHIP, but a lot of that stems from a fortunate BABIP (.251). In terms of movement, his fastball and changeup have lost some stank and it shows in his pitch values. Lewis is not pitching as well as he did last season even though his WHIP and ERA do not reflect this. He's a bit of a sell candidate.
Coco Crisp stole his 17th base. He's still available in 45% of Y! leagues.
I have a hard time believing Kevin Gregg, with his 1.69 WHIP, is still closing games for Baltimore. Koji Uehara is a FAR better option and was the original choice for the ninth inning before injury struck. If you're relying on Gregg for saves, you better have Koji in your back pocket.
Felipe Paulino pitches for KC now. When did that happen? Felipe has always been a pitcher of interest. A cheap source of strikeouts is always intriguing. His BB/9 was solid in '09 (3.41), but regressed in '10 (4.52). Paulino is the type of pitcher in which you can reap a profit. The pitchers to gamble on are those who have the ability to punch out batters. Command comes with experience and strikeouts do not grow on trees. Paulino's past statistics have been mauled by horrific BABIP numbers despite low line drive percentages. He's a solid pitcher in disguise. Felipe pitched well against the Angels today [5 IP, 4 H, 0 BB, 0 ER, 4 K]. I wish I grabbed him for my AL-Only squad before Eno Sarris got his mits on him.
Kyle Drabek didn't make it out of the first inning against Cleveland. The Jays fans let him hear it. I don't know why people even bothered to draft this guy. His minor league numbers were not impressive. I don't care who his daddy is, you show me a 7.33 K/9 and 3.78 BB/9 from AA and I'll show you a pitcher who won't even make it on my cheat sheet. Kyle's clunker [.2 IP, 3 H, 3 BB, 4 ER, K] pushed his WHIP up to 1.69. He now has more walks than strikeouts (45 to 43). For some strange reason, he's still owned in 27% of Y! leagues. I don't get it.
Joey Votto hit a HR. He has seven. Jay Bruce has seventeen. Swag!
Allen Craig didn't get the start, but he still made it into the game and homered. This was his fourth of the year. Craig has 25 HR power in his bat if given a seasons worth of AB. He's hitting .337, has four steals and carries 2B eligibility. Owned in only 11% of Y! leagues, Allen is very, very underrated by the fantasy community.
Ubaldo! Nine innings, no walks. Bam! That performance put me on top of the Starbonell Station league.
You know who I've been scooping up across my leagues... the 3% owned Jose Veras from Pittsburgh. He's pitching the 8th inning (9 holds), striking out fools left and right (31 K in 22.1 IP, 12.49 K/9), owns a 1.07 WHIP and a 2.07 ERA. I think we all understand the Pirates will ship Joel Hanrahan to a contender at some point this season. For those scrapping for saves, Veras isn't a bad investment.