I’m very pleased with how Week 1 went down! Five of our six streamers looked great going into Sunday, and the only one that didn’t pitch well had their matchup changed on us! What kind of crap is that? Anyway, this week is a bit tougher than the last. Most of the two-start guys are owned in every league, and it’s going to force us to make a couple of risky picks. That means it might be a better week to ride the one-start streamers instead, but if your feeling ballsy, let’s ride the wave with Wade!
Wade Miley CIN, (at SF, vs. CLE)
Oof, if this doesn’t tell you what the two-start streamers look like, I don’t know what will. In any case, I think Miley is a good bet to provide some quality innings in your lineup and solidify your ERA and WHIP. Wade Miley Cyrus pitched six scoreless innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates in his first start of the year. More importantly, he allowed just three baserunners and struck out six batters. That’s the guy we saw between 2018-19, generating a 3.52 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in that two-year span. That makes us believe that his 2020 season was a fluke, and that’s probably the case for a lot of guys with all the crap going on.
What we really love about Miley are his matchups. The first one comes against one of the worst lineups in what’s arguably the best pitcher’s park in baseball. In the first 10 days of the season, the Giants are hitting .197 as a team while generating a 26 percent K rate. That’s terrible news in a ballpark like this, and Miley should cruise to a quality start in that outing. We also don’t mind the Indians matchup, too, with Cleveland ranked 24th in scoring and 27th in OPS last season while losing Francisco Lindor in the offseason.
Huascar Ynoa, ATL (vs. MIA, at CHC)
I’d be lying to you if I told you I knew anything about Scar before his debut on Wednesday, but he certainly opened up my eyes, making him one of the best streamers of the week! Ynoa threw five scoreless innings against a tough Washington Nationals lineup, striking out five batters while allowing just three baserunners. A game like that forced me to dive a bit deeper, and I was impressed with what I saw. While his ERA and WHIP weren’t necessarily great in the minors, he provided a fantastic 26 percent K rate. That’s all that really matters in today’s MLB because he can pick up 10-15 Ks in a week like this.
Let’s start by talking about this Marlins matchup. Miami has been near the bottom of every offensive statistic for a few years now, ranked 25th in xwOBA last season. It’s hard to see that improving at all this year, with the Marlins tallying a horrendous .600 OPS in the first two weeks of the year. That will likely have Ynoa and the Braves entering this game as a monster favorite, making the win and K potential hard to overlook. A matchup with the Cubs might sound scary, but they’re called the Cubs for a reason. It’s because they hit like baby bears, generating a .604 OPS while sitting 29th in K rate this season.
If for some reason, Bryse Wilson gets these starts, we like him as well.
Rich Hill, TB (vs. TEX)
Hill has always been one of my favorite players in baseball. I’m a little disappointed that we don’t get to see him rake at the plate anymore, but his goofy pitching style will do just fine. This guy is more than pure entertainment, though, being one of the best pitchers in baseball for six years now. Since 2015, Dick Mountain has a 3.01 ERA and 1.06 WHIP while striking out 595 batters across 515 innings. Those are unbelievable numbers from a guy chilling on waiver wires, and it’s no surprise that a team like the Rays are reviving his career. Hill has a 1.10 WHIP in his first two starts while striking out 11 batters across 10 innings.
All of that makes him hard to fade, but this matchup is stupendous too. Hill gets a matchup against a Rangers team that was no-hit over the weekend and ranked 29th in both runs scored and OPS last season. That doesn’t even take into consideration that they sat 26th in K rate last year as well, and currently sit 27th in strikeout rate this year. The Streamonator absolutely agrees with our assessment, projecting Hill to provide $18.8 worth of value, the highest total of any of our streamers for the week.
Adrian Houser, MIL (vs. PIT)
I wasn’t quite sure if I wanted to include Houser in this article until I saw what he did on Saturday. The hurling righty allowed one unearned run across five innings against a stout St. Louis Cardinals lineup. That was actually his second tough matchup of the season, allowing just two runs to the Minnesota Twins in his debut. Those are really encouraging performances, and getting to face the putrid Pirates here is certainly a step in the right direction.
Pittsburgh ranked dead-last in runs scored, OBP and OPS last season, and might have gotten worse by losing Josh Bell in the offseason. That makes us want to use any and all streamers against them, with the Streamonator projecting Houser to provide $9.4 worth of value in this fantastic spot. In two starts against them last year, House had a 3.75 ERA and 1.15 WHIP if you needed any more incentive.
Steven Matz, TOR (at KC)
I hate to go down this road again, but Matz has looked fantastic in his first two starts with the Blue Jays. In fact, the southpaw is currently pitching to a 1.46 ERA and 0.89 WHIP while striking out 13 batters across 12.1 innings of action. We’ve seen him have stretches like this in the past, and we have to believe he’ll continue this success against the Royals. Kansas City ranked 24th in runs scored, 26th in OPS, and 28th in hard-hit rate last season and simply has one of the ugliest lineups in baseball.
Cole Irvin, OAK (vs. DET)
Irvin has allowed four runs in each of his first two starts, but having to face the Houston Astros twice will do that to anyone. The fact that he only allowed four runs is slightly encouraging because this guy flashed some serious stuff in spring training. In his 18 spring training innings, Irvin posted a 1.00 ERA and 0.65 WHIP while striking out 18 batters. That earned him the final spot in this rotation, and the A’s have been known to find diamonds in the rough throughout the Billy Beane era. What makes that even less surprising are his minor league averages, collecting a 3.07 ERA and 1.15 WHIP. The icing on the cake here is the matchup, though, with the Motor City Kitties ranked 24th in runs scored and OPS this season while posting the second-worst K rate in the Majors last year.
Feel free to comment me here or reach me on Twitter @Bartilottajoel if you have any questions!