Happy Friday to all and let's just start with the obvious: it's been a really weird week in terms of pitching. We've seen the likes of Huascar Ynoa and Alex Cobb put together double-digit K efforts with Carlos Rodon throwing a no-hitter! On the other side, we've have some ghastly performances from some of the bigger names in baseball. I'm looking at you Max Fried, Stephen Strasburg, and now Patrick Corbin. We'll have a lot more on Corbin below, but boy am I happy I don't have any shares of that guy.
As I've said many times already, it's early. We're not even 10% of the way through the season. Just because you're off to a slow start or have been riddled by injuries (many of us have), don't give up. We offer many tools both on the podcast, here in the newsletter or on the site to help you turn things around. Grind the waiver wire, play the matchups, try to buy low on proven talent and we'll get that ship back on track. I know it's easy to be discouraged early on, but stick with it! Enjoy the podcast, and have a great weekend!
OMGG player from Thursday
Scott's pick: Royals SP Jakob Junis
Scott talked about Junis last week as a potential SP to watch on your wire and deep leagues, and he's now even more excited about the changes he has made to his pitching arsenal -- most notably the addition of his nasty cutter, one that was featured Thursday night by the Pitching Ninja. Here is his final stat line vs. the Blue Jays: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. He added 11 whiffs on 81 pitches using strictly his four-seam fastball and this new cutter (67% FB, 31% CT, 2% SI). He's only 14% rostered and has the following stat line over his first two starts: 10 IP, 2 ER, 3 BB, 12 K. And now he also has Scott's seal of approval -- specifically in deeper leagues.
My pick: Nationals SP Patrick Corbin
Is it over for Corbin? It sure looked like it on Thursday and has through the start of the season. Against a Diamondbacks lineup that was missing Ketel Marte and Christian Walker, here's what Corbin's stat line looked like: 2 IP, 6 H, 10 R (9 ER), 4 BB, 1 K. He has allowed 15 earned runs in his first two starts and 32 earned runs in his last six starts dating back to last season, and his fastball velocity was hovering around 90 on Thursday. Scott thinks he's done with Corbin -- like for good -- for the rest of the 2021 season. He considers the level of concern for Corbin to be bright red, like a stoplight. He would drop him for Junis and Michael Fulmer. Scott expects Corbin to be ranked outside of his top-75 SPs in his next rankings update.
New source for saves?
The Blue Jays placed presumed closer Jordan Romano on the IL on Thursday with right ulnar neuritis. There is currently no timetable for Romano, but he joins Julian Merryweather -- the reliever who got the first two saves of the season -- on the IL. Merryweather was placed on the IL on Wednesday with a left oblique strain. This means someone other than these two will get the next save opportunity in Toronto, and that's important in the everlasting chase for saves. You're not doing a daily league right if you're not always scratching and scraping for saves, and this is no different.
Rafael Dolis is expected to be the next man up. So how much FAB should you allocate to Dolis now? Scott thinks Dolis is next in line and in more innings than not he will not allow a run (despite putting batters on base). Of course, this might only be a short-term stay in the role, but if you're aggressively looking for saves, Dolis is a good bet for a couple weeks. He made clear this is not a blow-your-budget type situation, but Dolis is worth adding for cheap.
More news and notes
- The Padres intend to activate Fernando Tatís Jr. on Friday. Guess I gotta eat my hat, huh? How do you cook a hat? I can't believe I said I would do that ...
- Giants SP Johnny Cueto landed on the IL with a Grade 1 lat strain. Does this mean Logan Webb is headed back to the rotation?
- SP Alex Wood is returning for the Giants Sunday and starting against the Marlins.
- Twins OF Alex Kirilloff was optioned back to the Twins alternate training site Thursday.
- OF Nomar Mazara was placed on the IL for the Tigers. This should mean more playing time for Victor Reyes and Jacoby Jones.
- White Sox SS Tim Anderson returned for the White Sox and went 2 for 5 with a run scored. He should be back in your lineups if he's not already.
- Padres OF/1B Wil Myers remained out on Thursday and this injury is starting to linger.
- Twins OF Byron Buxton and 3B Josh Donaldson were both out of the lineup for the Twins on Thursday. Buxton continues to nurse that hamstring. Someone find Chris Towers wherever he is and make sure he's OK!
- The White Sox are hopeful that SP Dylan Cease will be able to make his start Friday against the Red Sox.
- Mike Matheny said Thursday that Royals SS Adalberto Mondesi is "starting to do more movements." Mondesi of course is dealing with that oblique injury.
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Prospects to stash
This Saturday, teams can call up a prospect and keep him up the rest of the season and still get a seventh year of control. After Saturday, the first season for them doesn't count. When people talk about service time manipulation, that's usually what they're referring to.
The two must-stash prospects (if they're somehow not owned in your league then do everything in your power to change that):
- Rays SS Wander Franco. He is the No. 1 prospect in baseball. His minor league claim to fame is a career .336 BA and more walks than strikeouts.
- Mariners OF Jarred Kelenic. The top prospect had the following 2019 minor league stat line: .291 with 23 HRs and 20 SBs.
The next best prospects to stash:
- Marlins SP Sixto Sanchez. He's shut down for now with a shoulder injury, but he has been back throwing 45 feet -- he is still a ways away. Originally, we expected mid-April but it's now going to be more like mid-May.
- Twins OF Alex Kirilloff. He made his debut earlier this week and to Scott that is a strong indication he will be up for good soon. There may not be an opening for everyday playing time right now, but the Twins have an older lineup.
Other prospects to consider stashing:
- Padres SP MacKenzie Gore. Scott expects to see him mid-May and he wishes he didn't have the same control issues in spring training as he experienced last year, but he considers him the next best SP prospect to stash.
- Tigers SP Matt Manning. Scott thinks he's next in line and should make his debut in the first third of the season.
- Mariners SP Logan Gilbert. Scott can see the Mariners waiting until late June since they aren't contenders this year.
- Royals SS Bobby Witt. Scott thinks we'll get a chance to see Witt after the All-Star Break. He's the only one in this list who Scott thinks has a chance to not make it up to the majors at any point this year.
- Athletics SP Daulton Jefferies. Scott thinks this one could be pretty soon and he thinks he'll get a turn in the rotation in late April.
- Cubs SS Nico Hoerner. Scott thinks we won't see him until May, but once he's up, he's up for good and he was crushing the ball in the spring.
- Red Sox OF Jarren Duran.
- Red Sox SS Jeter Downs. This is the prospect of this group that Scott is most excited to stash, but he might be delayed longer.
- Giants OF Heliot Ramos.
Chris Towers wasn't on tonight because he was busy working on Friday's waiver recommendations. More to come today, but here's a peak at the players he's targeting on waivers -- pitchers and hitters.