Michael Pineda allowed 5 ER through just three innings yesterday. Frankly, it could have been worse; he allowed 9 hits, 1 walk and 3 home runs. Pineda started the year on fire with an xFIP of 2.48 and 3.74 in April and May; that increased to 4.13 in June as his K% nearly halved. Over the full season, Pineda's numbers look solid enough, though they're trending in the very wrong direction. I was targeting him in May, but now I'm softening given his recent struggles - namely the lack of strikeouts over that period. I'm concerned, but not writing him off.
Gulp. Dellin Betances had allowed 6 ER over his last three appearances, and then came yesterday when he went 0.1 innings allowing 1 ER but walking 4. He's BB/9 was already double 2016 before yesterday, and it got a lot worse. Fortunately he strikes out enough batters that the walks haven't hurt him too badly, but I can't consider him an elite setup man going forward unless he figures out his issues. He's only valuable in roto leagues at this point, and barely since his WHIP is now approaching 1.4 per 9.
Justin Smoak has continued his excellent under-the-radar campaign by hitting his 23rd HR of the season yesterday. I think Smoak's breakout is real; his K% is down from 33% last year to 18% this year, principally through a much improved Contact% of 81.7% in 2017. Everything else is basically in line. Continue to enjoy the results.
Mallex Smith was 4-for-4 yesterday with 3 runs and an SB, his 10th on the season. Smith has done a fantastic job reaching base (.405 OBP), so I would anticipate a run on SB for him (no pun intended) very soon now that he's getting more volume as he's attempted to steal 15x this season in a limited number of opportunities. If he's available in Roto leagues, I'd snag him now.
Blake Snell continued his laborious and disappointing season yesterday even though he didn't allow a run over 5 innings. He allowed 4 hits and walked 4 in the short outing, which is normally a lot more detrimental to one's ERA. Snell's SIERA was 5.55 entering yesterday; he unfortunately didn't take the leap forward in 2017 that many were hoping. His K% is down and his walks per nine remains very elevated near 6. He still has a lot of talent, but I'm not confident he figures it out this season. Stay away.