Greg Smith, unimpressive Sunday starts
When Greg Smith has the best pitching performance in 6 innings of work, you can tell it was a subpar day. And that's surprising considering some of the names out there.
Johan Santana met Dan Haren and they both pitched reasonably well but neither got the win or pitched deep in the game, as they were both up against good offenses. While there were just a few quality starts, Sunday was littered with several ugly starts.
Top SP Lines of the Day
Greg Smith (Oak) - 6 Innings, 3 hits, 1 run, 2 walks, 10 K's. Oakland always seems to know what they're doing with young starting pitchers coming up after the veterans (Zito, Hudson, Mulder, and now Haren) are sent packing. Greg Smith is a good example of this as he has had 6 solid starts this year, and his lone loss was an 8 inning 2 run 5 K effort. Is he ready to be owned in a 12 team league? Probably, and if not you have to be considering him for a daily pickup during his starts.
Johan Santana (NYM) - 6 Innings, 6 hits, 1 run, 4 walks, 8 K's. It's that Johan guy who makes a bit of money over there in New York. Despite a 3-2 record he is cruising along with a 2.91 ERA and 1.01 WHIP, right about where it belongs. Probably not going to win those 25+ games a few crazies predicted early on. He is still walking too many batters and 47 K's in 46.1 innings can be improved too, though it's certainly not poor.
Dan Haren (Ari) - 6 Innings, 3 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk, 7 K's. This performance is probably better than Johan's actually. Haren's 0.99 WHIP has been lovely so far and his 36 K's in 43.1 innings is nice and about where he was last year (192 K's in 222.2 innings). Let's just hope that second half slide doesn't come, but again, he is with a contender in Arizona instead of a team known for faltering lately in the 2nd half (Oakland).
Aaron Cook (Col) - 7.2 Innings, 9 hits, 2 runs, 0 walks, 2 K's. As disappointing as the Rockies have been in 2008, Cookie has been a bright spot. He did not contribute much during the playoff run but has won his last 5 starts. He will never be a big K pitcher (22 in 48.2) but he can go deep in games with his sinkerball. Probably won't keep the 2.40 ERA and 1.15 WHIP but he will continue to be a consistent pitcher for a Rockies team that has to start playing better.
Roy Halladay (Tor) - 7.1 Innings, 3 hits, 1 run, 0 walks, 7 K's. Halladay continues to work deep into games and owners are probably upset he only went 7.1 innings! He already has 4 complete games this year and is striking out a solid amount of batters (38 in 57 innings). His 0.98 WHIP likely won't last but lets hope these workhorse stats continue to come, because towards the end of last year Halladay looked like he was on his last legs.
Gil Meche (KC) - 7 innings, 4 hits, 0 runs, 0 walks, 4 K's. This could be the best start of the day actually, giving up just 4 hits at Cleveland and getting the win. Unfortunately the 7 scoreless innings reduces his putrid ERA to 5.98 but it's at least more in line than the 7.22 he carried into the game. Last time against Cleveland he was shelled for 8 runs in 3.1 innings and has been bombed a few other times. You would think his stats would be switched with Greinke's, but look for Zach to come back to earth and Gil to have a few more starts like this as he has had 3 solid starts in his last 4.
Darrell Rasner (NYY) - 6 Innings, 5 hits, 2 runs, 0 walks, 4 K's. Just called up from AAA after Ian Kennedy has been sent down. Remember, the last few years he was a solid late season SP, granted it's a very small sample size. Not many K's but he could pitch 5-6 innings with just a few runs. Usually that's all you need in New York especially once Alex comes back.
Worst SP Lines of the Day
Bronson Arroyo (Cin) - 1.1 Innings, 7 hits, 7 runs, 1 walk, 0 K's. This was amusing, because owners ran to pick him up after a solid win (his 1st of the year) at St Louis last start. Looks like the corner hasn't been turned. He has had a few good seasons in Cincinnati but if he cannot hit the switch at least the Reds have produced a few youngsters like Edinson Volquez and Johnny Cueto. As for Arroyo he actually has been striking batters out but he might want to improve that 1.95 WHIP and 8.63 ERA.
Carlos Silva (Sea) - 3 Innings, 11 Hits, 8 Runs, 0 Walks, 1 K. The dream is over. His first 7 starts were all solid, explaining his 3-0 record. But pitching at NYY is a whole different deal even with Alex Rodriguez. Silva does not really have powerful stuff, as evidenced by his K's, and playing teams like the Yankees he is prone to outings like this where he gets hit and hit hard. He is a much more attractive start in the cozy confines of Safeco Field.
Scott Kazmir (TB) - 4 Innings, 6 hits, 3 Runs, 3 Walks, 5 K's. Not a terrible outing but he generally pitches well at Boston surprisingly. It was his first back this year. Tampa Bay is better than in years past so Kazmir might be able to match or surpass his 13 wins from 2007. He probably will not reach 239 K's but few people strike out batters like Kazmir. His issues have always been being efficient enough to not have 100 pitches by 5 innings of work. Toward the end of last year he started going 7 and 8 innings impressively.
Steve Trachsel (Bal) - I can't believe this guy starts for a major league team.
Boof Bonser (Min) - 6 Innings, 8 hits, 5 Runs, 0 walks, 5 K's. Actually a pretty good start considering the circumstances. He gave up all 6 runs in the first inning and it looked like he'd be killing ERA / WHIP all around fantasy baseball. But he then went 5 scoreless innings to at least soften the blow. Despite having 4 losses he has really only has two bad games now. A good spot start if the time is right.