10 Important Stories From 04/16/17 Box Scores: Selling High On Bundy, Buying Taillon’s Start & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Trey Mancini slugged 2 HR for the second time in his past three games, going 3-5 with 2 HR, 4 RBI and 2 R.  If he keeps this up the Orioles are going to be forced to find AB for him on a daily basis (he was at 1B yesterday).  Eric Thames went deep for the fourth straight game, finishing 1-4 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 2 R.  Bryce Harper had a monster day himself, going 3-5 with 2 HR, 5 RBI and 2 R (including a walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth).  Greg Bird broke out of his slump (3-3, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R), though we will talk about him later today.  What else happened on the field we need to know about?  Let’s take a look:


1) Dylan Bundy stars against the Blue Jays…
Bundy was the latest pitcher to stymy Toronto, tossing 6.0 shutout innings while allowing 5 H and 1 BB, striking out 6.  It’s the second time he’s beat the Blue Jays this season and has allowed 3 ER or fewer in all three of his starts (the other came in Boston).  He now owns a 1.86 ERA and 0.98 WHIP on the season, though home runs could ultimately become an issue (especially pitching in Baltimore).  It’ll be something to watch moving forward, especially since he allowed 18 HR over 109.2 IP last season and he’s fly ball prone in the early going.  It’s a great start for a name owners have been waiting for, but don’t be shy to sell high.


2) Matt Boyd strong against the Indians…
Going 6.0 innings he allowed 1 R on 7 H and 2 BB, striking out 3, to earn the W.  Before we get overly excited, especially by his 10 groundballs (compared to 5 fly balls), keep in mind that he entered the day with a 30.4% groundball rate over his first two starts (35.5% in the Majors).  He also managed just 7 swinging strikes, and while he does have some strikeout upside it’ll be limited with this type of number (8.1 K/9 at Triple-A).  Consider him a worthy pitcher of owning, and for now a streaming option, but don’t bank on him being a must start.


3) Another W for Wily Peralta…
Taking on the Reds he allowed 2 ER on 3 H and 3 BB, striking out 1, over 6.0 IP.  Groundballs have always been his calling card, though he’s also struggled with home runs and allowed his first of the season yesterday (Eugenio Suarez, who went 1-4 with 1 HR, 2 RBI and 1 R, took him deep).  That’s not the biggest concern, though, as he managed a meager 3 swinging strikes after entering the game with a 6.4% SwStr%.  It’s nearly impossible to stay productive with that type of strikeout stuff, regardless of the other skills, and it’s only a matter of time before a blowup comes.  Don’t get infatuated, as there’s a downturn coming.


4) Alex Cobb stumbles in Boston…
While he ultimately allowed just 4 ER over 5.0 IP, it simply wasn’t his day as he allowed 11 H and 1 BB while failing to strikeout a batter (4 swinging strikes).  Considering he was generating swings and misses without an issue over his first two starts (11.5% SwStr%) and also generating a lot of swings outside of the strike zone (33.6% O-Swing%), it isn’t a big concern.  He has solid control, groundball stuff (56.0% for his career) and the potential to post a K/9 of 8.0 or better, don’t let this poor outing change your outlook.  Now may actually be the prime time to try and buy low, if another owner is frustrated by his 4.50 ERA.


5) Where has Ender Inciarte’s power come from…
Never known for his power struck, Inciarte slugged his fourth home run of the season yesterday going 2-3 with 1 HR, 1 RBI and 2 R.  He’s already eclipsed his HR total from a year ago (3) and is on pace to far eclipse his previous career high (6 HR in ’15).  It’s certainly not like he’s swinging for the fences (he entered the day with a 55.9% groundball rate) and it’s hard to expect him to come reasonably close to this pace.  The bigger concern is that he’s chasing outside the strike zone far too much (43.2% O-Swing%) and not hitting the ball with authority (8.8% line drive rate).  If he doesn’t correct those two things, once the power fades his overall appeal is going to disappear.  We’d expect an improvement, but watch him closely.


6) Tyler Skaggs finally posts an impressive day…
After allowing 10 ER over his first 10.1 IP, Skaggs tossed 7.0 shutout innings against the Royals allowing 4 H and 2 BB, striking out 9.  Home runs had been the biggest issue over his first two starts (3 HR), though his control hasn’t been great either (7 BB over 17.1 IP).  What he has done is show strikeout stuff (19 K), and he had 18 swinging strikes yesterday.  That’s extremely promising, but if he can’t improve in the other two categories he’s never going to be a trustworthy option.  The upside is there, but for now he’s more of a streaming option.


7) Another strong start from Jameson Taillon…
While Tyler Glasnow has imploded, Taillon has continued to show that he belongs in the Majors.  He allowed 1 R (0 earned) on 7 H and 3 BB, striking out 6, over 7.0 IP against the Cubs to earn his first W of the season.  He now owns a 0.90 ERA, and while he’s obviously not that good his groundball ability and solid control should allow him to continue being a viable option moving forward.  There should be a “stabilizing” performance at some point, but he should remain a must own option in all formats.


8) Avisail Garcia has yet another monster day at the plate…
He went 4-5 with 1 HR, 2 RBI and 1 R, putting him at .465 with 2 HR and 10 RBI on the season.  For a player that’s often been hyped, it would be easy to get excited with the gaudy early season numbers.  Keep in mind that he entered the day with a .536 BABIP, a gaudy 16.2% SwStr% (17.0% for his career) and still isn’t showing all that much power.  Things are going to turn, so don’t get on board.


9) Jurickson Profar earning more playing time…
It’s not that his stats are overly impressive, but he’s now hit in four straight after going 1-2 with 2 BB yesterday (over the stretch he’s gone 4-11 with 2 RBI and 1 R).  These four hits are his only of the season (4-19) and none have gone for extra bases, so he is still has a long ways to go before he becomes a must own fantasy option.  That said we also all know the upside, so keep a close eye on him and see how the situation develops.


10) Taijuan Walker shuts down the Dodgers…
He was listed after 5.0 innings (87 pitches), though when he was on the mound he impressed as he allowed 1 ER on 4 H and 1 BB, striking out 7.  The biggest question is going to be if he can consistently keep the ball in the ballpark, especially pitching in Arizona, the number of fly balls he’s been allowing (27 fly balls vs. 18 groundballs on the season) and the struggles and the problems he had in ’16 (1.81 HR/9).  While he isn’t unusable at home, be a little bit cautious.

Sources – ESPN, Fangraphs, Baseball Reference 


  1. bbboston says:

    Aaron Hicks: Thoughts?

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      Nice hot streak, but not sure he’s guaranteed regular AB. Ride him while he’s hot, but don’t get too infatuated

  2. Mitch says:

    I have a question, someone in my keeper league dropped Steven Matz. Is Matz someone worth picking up? In order for me to pick him up I would have to drop one of my pitchers either Kendall Gravemen, Kevin Gausman, Robbie Ray, or Garrett Richards. Where do u value Matz at going forward?

  3. Joel says:

    Trey mancini: is he for real and worth the add, or is he more of an avisail Garcia type?

    Thank you!

  4. Dewey says:

    Who do you like better for the rest of the season: Trey Mancini or Tyler Motter? Will either get 1B eligibility (5 games)? Motter has 2 games at 1B and Mancini has 1.

  5. Chris says:

    Hey Prof, would you consider buying low on CarGo? He’s off to a pretty abysmal start but do you still see him putting up numbers like last yr (25 HR, 100 RBI, avg climbing to around .300)? Thanks!

  6. Rotoprofessor says:

    Joel – He’s not this good, but he’s also not Avisail Garcia. He’s worth the add, depending on the drop.

    Dewey – I’d lean Mancini, as Motter could easily lose his PT once Segura returns. Time will tell, but I’d think Mancini will see more time at 1B than Motter

    Chris – Depending on how low I’d always consider, but my concern there is if he’s traded there won’t be a rebound.

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