Shields allowed one earned run on three hits and three walks while striking out eight across 7.1 innings Thursday against the Rangers. He did not factor into the decision. Shields turned back the clock to 2014 with this start, generating 10 swinging strikes to go along with nine ground balls. He wasn't rewarded with a win, but did record his third quality start in his past five outings. While it's hard to trust Shields based on his recent track record, he has done a good job of limiting home runs through 55.1 innings this season and has seemingly gotten a bit unlucky with only a 63.8% strand rate.
Shields fell to 1-4 on the season after giving up five runs in six innings Saturday against the Cubs. He struck out four while allowing seven hits and three walks. The Cubs got to Shields right away, with Anthony Rizzo hitting a three-run homer before the veteran could get a single out. He allowed one more run in the first and another in the second before settling down for four straight scoreless innings. His ERA now sits at 5.44 through 48 innings. It's familiar territory, as he hasn't recorded an ERA below 5.00 since 2015. He'll next take the hill Thursday against the Rangers.
Shields allowed three earned runs on two hits while walking two and striking out two across 6.2 innings Sunday against the Twins. He did not factor into the decision. Shields allowed only four baserunners in what was arguably his best start of the season. While not coming close to his form from a few seasons ago, Shields has been able to put together decent starts when pitching against favorable lineups or in favorable ballparks. He's not a great option in shallower leagues but could be someone worth considering as a consistent source of innings in deeper leagues.
Shields allowed one run on two hits through six innings Tuesday, striking out four and walking zero in a no-decision against the Cardinals. This was easily the best start of the year for Shields, and he was only denied the win by a ninth-inning comeback from the Cardinals. Shields gave up a homer to Tommy Pham, the first batter he saw, and then proceeded to retire the next 15 consecutive hitters before allowing a hit to Kolten Wong in the sixth. This was also the first time this year that Shields hasn't walked a batter in a start. He's still carrying an unfavorable 19:17 K:BB through 35.1 innings, on top of a 5.35 ERA, but Tuesday's outing was a positive performance. Next up for Shields is a start at home against the Twins.
Shields (1-2) got tagged for seven runs on eight hits in a loss to the Astros on Friday. He struck out four and walked four. Shields was keeping the Astros in check through three, but allowed five runs in the fourth by way of four hits and some sloppy defense. The other two runs charged to him came in the sixth, when reliever Danny Farquhar entered with a couple of Shields' guys on base and allowed them to come around on a George Springer double. Shields threw 28 pitches in relief in Wednesday's 14-inning affair in Oakland, which likely affected his sharpness Friday. Even so, he's struggling to keep runners off the bases, allowing 27 hits in 23.1 innings while issuing 13 walks against 11 strikeouts.