2013

Best Streaming Options: Four Streams to Save Your League and One More Just to Be Sure

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If you read any of the other articles in the streaming series, you can skip the first section of this post and start to read where I go over the best streaming options.

From now till the end of the season, I will go over the best streaming options available for the upcoming week; Monday’s post will have the best options for Monday through Thursday, and Thursday’s post will have the best options for Thursday through Sunday.

To make your options realistic and reach a wider range of players, we will keep the pool of players eligible to be streamed to those pitchers that are owned in 50% or less of ESPN leagues.

 (If you don’t know what wRC+ is, this is a link to the FanGraphs library definition)

Here are the best streaming options for Thursday through Sunday:

Thursday:

Alex Wood vs. Miami (At Miami)

ESPN Ownership: 36.9%

Opponent’s wRC+: 80 vs. LHPs (28th in MLB)

If there are any owners in your league that were foolish enough drop Alex Wood, due to his recent inconsistency, take advantage of their ineptitude and reap the reward that will come with his matchup on Thursday. As good as Wood has pitched this year, his peripherals suggest that he has pitched better—2.66 FIP and a 3.19xFIP. Wood has been able to dominate lefties (.274 wOBA against) with his knuckle curve, while he has also been able to quell righties with the use of his changeup (.306 wOBA against), and remain neutral to platoon splits.

Kluber has posted K/9 and BB/9 beyond his pedigree. Photo by: Keith Allison

Kluber has posted K/9 and BB/9 beyond his pedigree this year. Photo by: Keith Allison

Corey Kluber vs. Chicago White Sox (At Chicago)

ESPN Ownership: 6.7%

Opponent’s wRC+: 83 vs. RHPs (29th in MLB)

Lance Lynn, Matt Cain, and Jeff Samardzija: These are all pitchers that Corey Kluber ranks ahead of on ESPN’s player rater. While the aforementioned pitchers have had down years of sorts, Kluber, on the same rating scale, remains only spots behind Matt Garza, Jake Peavy and Jared Weaver who have had above average years compared to their pears. Kluber has pitched better than most would acknowledge or know, but this would be the opportune time to show your fellow league mates that you are aware of Kluber’s talent and accept the value he can have.

Friday:

Danny Salazar vs. Chicago White Sox (At Chicago)

ESPN Ownership: 10.6%

Opponent’s wRC+: 83 vs. RHPs (29th in MLB)

While Salazar will not be able to give you the innings to drastically lower your ERA, he certainly won’t hurt it, and will reduce any deficit you many face in the strike out category with his 10.95 K/9. Salazar has thrown his fastball 70.1% of the time, which puts him in the top twenty of fastball usage among starting pitchers with his innings threshold. Salazar has not needed to use much more than his fastball, because teams rarely get a third at bat against the right-hander, with the Indians capping his pitch count so low. Like I said before Salazar’s last outing against the Mets (4 IP, 1 ER, 2 BB, 8 K), if you can handle Salazar not lasting past the fifth inning, and I don’t know why you wouldn’t be able to with the return he gives you in strikeouts, start him.

Saturday:

Michael Wacha vs. Seattle (In St. Louis) IF YOU ARE DESPERATE

ESPN Ownership: 25.3%

Opponent’s wRC+: 100 vs. RHPs (13th in MLB)

The Mariners’ offense has been dreadful this year with against LHPs with a wRC+ of 79, which ranks them 29th in MLB, but they have been surprisingly decent against RHPs. Wacha had a dominant outing against the Pirates his last time out, but I am not too crazy about this start.

Sunday:

Dillon Gee vs. Miami (In New York)

ESPN Ownership: 25.9%

Opponent’s wRC+: 68 vs. RHPs (30th in MLB)

Although Gee surrendered four runs in 6.1 innings pitched against the Nationals on Tuesday, he still managed five strikeouts with no walks. Gee has posted a sub three ERA in every month since May, but his FIP has still remained over 3.6 in that same time frame. This is a reason to be concerned about Gee’s long-term prospects, but no reason to be worried about his next start on Sunday against the Marlins.

Devon Jordan is obsessed with statistical analysis, non-fiction literature, and electronic music. If you enjoyed reading about pitcher value in Fantasy Baseball, follow him on Twitter @devinjjordan.

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