Marcus Stroman-Blue Jays-SP
Marcus Stroman went 6 IP and gave up 0 ER on 5 H, 1 BB, and 6 K's against the Red Sox. Stroman has pitched well for the Blue Jays this year and is hearing his name come up in a lot of trade rumors because of it. The concern is that his 3.04 ERA looks good on the surface but the skills behind it leaves a lot to be desired. He doesn't miss many bats (19% K, 9% SwStr) which is always a concern especially for a pitcher in the AL East. He does help alleviate some of those concerns by having good control (7%) and getting a high percentage of ground balls (58%). This also helps him keep the ball in the park (0.86 HR/9). His 4.47 SIERA points towards a more realistic picture of Stroman and a sign that regression could be coming. Even if it does, Stroman is still a backend of the rotation starter in fantasy just probably not the SP#3 or SP#4 that you think he is now.
J.A. Happ went 4 IP and gave up 8 ER on 11 H, 0 BB, and 2 K's against the Astros. Happ has not been the same pitcher from a year ago. He has a 5.23 ERA and 1.28 WHIP across 84.1 IP. The biggest concern for the 36-year-old lefty is the drop in strikeouts. Despite a similar swinging strike rate (10%) his strikeout rate has dropped from 26% to 19% which is below the league average. Happ has simply become more hittable which is reflected in the amount of hard contact (40%) he has given up. This has also manifested in a home run problem (2.13 HR/9) which is not good for someone pitching half their games in Yankees Stadium. He has pitched better in June (3.71 ERA) but there isn't much hope that he can return to being an above average fantasy starter.
Ramon Laureano was 0-4 with 2 K against the Rays. Laureano has been red hot of late with a .370 AVG and 3 HR/1 SB over the past week. On the season, he is hitting .266 with 12 HR, 42 R, 37 RBI, and 9 SB. The approach at the plate is not great with 26% K and 4% BB which is going to make him streaky/dependent on batted ball luck. The good news is that when he does make contact it is often hard contact (40%). He also has above average exit velocity and barrel%. Laureano is pacing towards a 20 HR/20 SB season which is extremely valuable especially the stolen bases in today's environment.
Zach Plesac went 7 IP and gave up 1 ER on 5 H, 1 BB, and 2 K's against the Tigers. Plesac has pitched extremely well for the Indians this year in a time when they really needed someone to step up. He has a 2.33 ERA and 0.96 WHIP through his first 38.2 IP at the major league level. If one dives deeper into his underlying skills they will immediately be concerned. His strikeout (21%) and walk rates (8%) are average and his swinging strike rate (9%) doesn't suggest more strikeouts are coming. Plesac is a fly ball pitcher (44% FB) which is walking is playing with fire in today's game without an elite strikeout rate. He has given up 6 HR (1.71 HR/9) this year and his 4.67 SIERA gives a more accurate look at what his ERA could be given his skills. Plesac is someone that you continue to run with while he is on a roll but be ready to jump off at the first sign of trouble.
Bobby Bradley was 1-3 with 1 2B, 1 R, 1 RBI, and 1 BB against the Tigers in his major league debut. Bradley has shown plus power in the minors and the Indians are in need of an offensive upgrade. He was hitting .292 with 24 HR, 43 R, 55 RBI, and 0 SB across 67 Triple-A games. The concern with Bradley is that despite the strong average this year there has been a ton of swing and miss to his game (32% K). This is going to be an issue at the major league level in which hitters will be able to exploit. The power is real so the question is going to be if he can make enough contact to be fantasy relevant. If you need power he is worth an add.
DraftKings Value Plays: OF Randal Grichuk (TOR) $3,700 and 3B Vlad Guerrero Jr. (TOR) $3,600
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