It was a subpar showing for Mike Clevinger (4.0 IP, 4 ER, 6 H, 5 BB, 5 K) against the Twins. Meanwhile Yu Darvish dominated the Pirates, tossing 6.0 shutout innings allowing 2 H and 1 BB, striking out 7.
1) Has Spencer Turnbull truly arrived…
Taking on the Reds he allowed 2 ER on 3 H and 1 BB, striking out 6, over 6.0 IP to earn the W. Making it even more impressive is that it’s the second time he’s faced Cincinnati in less than a week, yet he now has 14 K over 11.0 IP to go along with a 2.45 ERA. That’s highly important, considering how much he struggled more and more times through the batting order:
- First Time – 3.75 ERA
- Second Time – 5.80 ERA
- Third Time – 4.32 ERA
So being able to stymie the same team, so close together, brings hope moving forward. Let’s not forget that last season he posted an 8.86 K/9, 3.58 BB/9 and 48.3% groundball rate, as he struggled with some poor luck (.333 BABIP, 68.3% strand rate). In deeper formats he’s worth grabbing.
2) Can Jordan Montgomery become a fixture in NY rotation…
Making his 2020 debut he was strong against the Red Sox, allowing 1 R on 5 H and 1 BB, striking out 4, over 5.2 IP to earn the W. He was doing a solid job across the board, including 11 swinging strikes and 7 groundballs vs. 4 flyballs. He’s battled injuries the past few years, totaling 31.1 IP in the Majors, but he showed that he could thrive at the highest level back in ’17 (8.34 K/9, 2.95 BB/9 and 40.7% groundball rate). The Yankees do have a few alternatives in their player pool, so Montgomery isn’t guaranteed starts, but this should lengthen his leash a bit. He’s not a must start. but he’s worth at least a look as a streamer (and could be more).
3) Travis d’Arnaud stars against his former team…
While the story of the game may have been the implosion of the Mets bullpen, from a fantasy perspective d’Arnaud’s is a bit bigger. He finished the day going 3-4 with 5 RBI and 1 SB, and he’s now hitting .571 in his first two games of the season (remember he missed time due to COVID-19 like symptoms). He’s going to share the role with Tyler Flowers, so we have to keep that in mind, but there’s a reason he was once considered a top catching prospect. He’s worth using in most formats (even single catcher leagues).
4) Anthony Santander shows why he’s a must own OF…
Hitting cleanup against Blake Snell (3.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 4 K) and the Tampa Bay bullpen Santender delivered, going 3-4 with 1 HR, 3 RBI and 1 R (and the home run did come against Snell). Santander, who was one of our favorite sleepers heading into the season, is now hitting .273 with 2 HR and 7 RBI over 22 AB to start the season. He does need to do a better job of staying within the strike zone (O-Swing% of 40.2% in ’19, and he’s started with a 43.1% mark in ’20), but the power is real, he does make consistent contact and he hits the ball hard. It’s easy to overlook him in Baltimore, but don’t make that mistake.
5) Garrett Richards takes a step back, albeit in Coors Field…
After dominating the Diamondbacks on July 26, Richards wasn’t quite as impressive in his second start of the season. Going 5.2 IP he allowed 4 ER on 8 H and 1 BB, striking out 6, but of course we have to give the caveat that this outing came in Coors Field. He was missing bats (17 swinging strikes), but over his first two starts there are two key numbers that are hanging over him:
- Groundball Rate – 37.0%
- Hard% – 59.3%
Obviously it’s only 10.2 IP, but home runs could easily continue to be an issue (as is other things, considering how hard he’s been hit). The name brings intrigue, but be skeptical.
6) Does Randy Dobnak deserve our attention…
Taking on the Indians Dobnak was impressive, tossing 5.0 shutout innings allowing 3 H and 2 BB, striking out 4. While he’s gotten his season off to a strong start, with a 1.00 ERA, he’s also benefited from a .240 BABIP and 90.0% strand rate. While his name has brought intrigue in the past, it’s only a matter of time before the bubble bursts. He’s nothing more than a streaming option, and not one we’d be going out of our way to trust.
7) Has Colin Moran emerged as a must use 3B…
He finished the day 2-4 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 1 R, putting him at .333 with 4 HR and 5 RBI on the season. Obviously he’s not going to maintain this type of power pace, and while it’s a small sample size there are numerous underlying marks that are going to raise red flags:
- SwStr% – 14.0%
- O-Swing% – 40.4%
- Oppo% – 22.2%
So he’s pull heavy with a high likelihood of strikeouts. In other words, once the home runs slow down the results will likely disappear. Ride him while he’s hot then move on.
8) Brian Goodwin backs up our preseason hype…
Another Rotoprofessor sleeper, Goodwin went 2-3 with 1 HR, 3 RBI and 2 R yesterday, putting him at .450 with 2 HR, 7 RBI and 5 R over 20 AB. Obviously we’d like to see a little bit better than an 11.8% SwStr% and he also needs to do a better job of using the entire field (13.3% Oppo%). Obviously things are going to falloff, but in 481 PA between ’19 and ’20 he has 31 doubles, 4 triples and 19 HR to go along with a little bit of speed (7-for-10 on SB attempts). Consider him worth owning in all formats.
9) Tony Gonsolin solid in first start of ’20…
Called on to make the start against the Diamondbacks, Gonsolin tossed 4.0 shutout innings allowing 1 H and 1 BB, striking out 1. While the scoreless innings are nice, he wasn’t missing bats (5 swinging strikes) nor was he generating groundballs (4 groundballs vs. 6 flyballs). He’s shown more strikeout stuff (13.4% SwStr% over 41.1 IP at Triple-A), but groundballs aren’t his forte (35.7% at Triple-A) and he’s had control issues (4.57 BB/9 at Triple-A). Throw in that there isn’t a guarantee that he starts regularly and he’s easily ignored in all formats.
10) Has Taijuan Walker opened up our eyes…
He struggled in his first start, which came against the Astros, but looked like the much hyped prospect in start number two. Taking on the A’s Walker tossed 7.0 shutout innings allowing 1 H and 2 BB, striking out 8. Of course, before we get overly excited consider these numbers:
- Swinging Strikes – 7
- Groundballs-to-Flyballs – 3-to-10
So he wasn’t missing many bats and eventually all those flyballs will likely haunt him in terms of home runs (he allowed a HR in his first start, when he also had 1 K courtesy of 3 swinging strikes). It’s a nice start, but we wouldn’t make a move yet.
Sources – ESPN, Fangraphs