Elieser Hernandez- P- MIA- Injury Update- Hernandez was moved to the 60 Day IL due to his lat strain, which effectively ends his season. He had put up some solid numbers in his 6 starts in 2020, with a 3.16 ERA, 3.85 FIP, and 11.92 K/9. Hernandez made his biggest strides with control, with a 1.75 BB/9. His pitches in the zone increased from 51.5% in 2019 to 59.6% while contact dropped slightly from 80.3% to 78.0%. The sample size this season is obviously too small to draw definitive conclusions, but Hernandez put up enough of a performance to make him a player to watch in 2021 spring training, whatever form that takes.
Jesse Winker- OF- CIN- Stats- Winker is hitless in his last 3 games after going 0-for-2 yesterday. However, he has walked 3 times in those games and is slashing .293/.410/.603 for the season with 10 homers. In leagues that count OBP Winker is still providing some value even in this little slump. His Statcast numbers have been good this season. Winker has an Exit Velocity of 92.5, up from 89.2 in 2019 and his HardHit% has risen from 39.9% to 47.4%. Winker already has 12 barrels in 139 PAs, equaling his total in 384 PAs last year. He is less than a month past his 27th birthday, so next year will be counted as his age 27 season. It's almost like he gets to have his peak across two years.
Michael Conforto- OF- NYM- Hot- Conforto went 3-for-4 with two doubles and was hit by a pitch yesterday. His slash line stands at .342/.434/.557. Conforto's production is a result of his .415 BABIP. He has had that good luck continue through 41 games. Conforto's Batting EYE is 0.50, down from 0.56 last year. His Statcast metrics have also dropped, with his Exit Velocity going from 89.2 to 88.5 and his HardHit% down to 36.7% from 39.0%. Conforto has had exceptional luck for this long so it's not impossible that he will continue it, but his underlying numbers don't give reason to think there is anything except continued good luck that would enable him to keep this pace.
Aaron Nola- P- PHI- Cold- Nola has thrown 5 quality starts in 8 outings in 2020. Yesterday was not one of them. He was charged with 6 runs (3 earned) on 8 hits and a walk while striking out 10 in 5.1 IP. The unearned runs limited damage to Nola's ERA, which only increased from 2.45 to 2.74. His FIP bumped up from 3.15 to 3.33. Nola's K/9 made an increase from 11.66 to 12.22. In his 5 quality starts he has allowed 4 runs on 15 hits and 8 walks while striking out 47 in 36 IP. When Nola isn't sparkling like that he tends to get smacked around early or not getting much damage to his numbers while still striking batters out. When not throwing a quality start he has allowed 11 ERs on 19 hits and 5 walks while striking out 20 in 13.1 IP. Nola's risk to reward ratio makes him worth being in the lineup. When he's on he will give a lot and when he's off he's still going to give something and not hurt that badly elsewhere.
Josh Tomlin- P- ATL- Hot- Tomlin threw his first quality start in 4 appearances since joining the Braves rotation. It was actually his first quality start in over 3 years, since July 24, 2017 with Cleveland. He went 6 IP and allowed 1 run on 3 hits while walking no one and striking out 2. Tomlin had done well in 8 relief appearances before having some struggles after returning to the starting role he had enjoyed through 2017 with the Indians. His ERA for the season is now 3.77 with a 3.88 FIP. Tomlin's 8.16 K/9 is not outstanding but is a significant improvement on his 5.79 working almost exclusively out of the Atlanta bullpen and the 5.89 he had in 2018, his last season with Cleveland when he was a swingman. The 35-year-old may be one of those sleepers you want to find at the end of this unusual season.
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