Every Saturday this season will be designated to looking at the following week’s two-start pitchers. I’ll list everyone I can think of, but rotation shifts happen all the time, so feel free to mention anything that I may have missed.
Dan Haren (STL, PHI)
John Lackey (TB, BAL)
Tommy Hanson (PHI, @NYM)
Matt Cain (@SD, STL) – Cain hasn’t been great to start the 2010 campaign, but you didn’t draft him to not pitch against the Padres. Roll him out there and see if he can’t rack up a few more strikeouts.
Chad Billingsley (@CIN, @WAS)- Billingsley’s numbers took a shellacking in his last outing as he still hasn’t quite found his pre-2009 command. He is still getting the strikeouts, however (12 in 11 innings), so you just have to keep running him out there. Hopefully he can put up some big strikeout numbers against the Nationals.
Jorge De La Rosa (@WAS, FLA) – De La Rosa’s first two outings of the season are almost an exact definition of him as a pitcher. One game his command is on and he gets seven strikeouts, the next his command is off and he allows eight hits in 5.2 innings. There will be more of both types of outings as the season goes along. Let’s hope there are more like his first start than second.
David Price (@CWS, TOR) – Price has been going to two pitches more often this young season; his two-seam fastball and curve. Much like Ricky Romero did in his last outing, Price is chosing for movement over velocity. This could be a big sign of things to come.
John Danks (TB, SEA)- Danks has looked extremely good so far with a 3:1 K:BB rate.
Joel Pineiro (DET, NYY) – As long as he keeps getting an absurd amount of ground balls you’ve got to run him out there.
Mike Pelfrey (CHC, ATL)- Pelfrey has always been in possession of a 92-95 mph sinker, but so far this season he has been working in more two-seam fastballs, changeups and the occasional splitter. Keep rolling him out there while everything seems to be clicking.
Javier Vasquez (@OAK, @LAA) - Vazquez has not pitched well at all in his first two starts and the New York crowd let him know it on Wednesday. There has been a noticeable drop in Vazquez’s velocity from previous years. This could be a big red flag, making me wonder if he is 100 percent healthy.
Colby Lewis (@BOS, DET) – This one is by no means a slam dunk. Despite Lewis’ sterling ERA, he is sporting a 1.30 WHIP and has walked eight batters in 12.1 innings. One of the big adjustments he seemed to have made in Japan was his command, so we’ll have to see if this is just an early season anomaly. While I’m probably going to run him out there, I’m not crazy about this one.
Carlos Zambrano (@NYM, @MIL) - I am convinced that there is just no way to analyze Carlos Zambrano. He is crap one start, amazing the next and a little of both the third time. Big Z has allowed 20 hits in only 13.1 innings in three starts. The reward is high, but so is the risk.
Justin Masterson (@MIN, @OAK) - I really like what I have seen from Masterson early this season; 14 strikeouts to only two walks in 11 innings. The problem I foresee may come in Minnesota in the form of Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau, Jason Kubel, Denard Span, Orlando Hudson and perhaps even Jim Thome. Almost all of Masterson’s damage this season has come against right-handed batters. He has faced 16 left-handed batters this season and allowed seven hits with one walk and only one strikeout. The matchup in Oakland is better, but I would really think twice before starting Masterson against the left-handed loaded Twins.
Gio Gonzalez (NYY, CLE) - His strikeout potential is tremendous, but Gio will have to work out of trouble to make up for the runners he puts on base. Go for it if you need a big strikeout week.
Kevin Slowey (CLE, KC) - Slowey has a track record of top-notch command, but that has not been the case so far in 2010. He does have two decent matchups to try and turn things around, but if you can afford to wait and see him make the correction first, I would.
Aaron Cook (@WAS, FLA) - Cook gets plenty of ground balls, but his command has been off so far this season. his track record suggests that will turn around. Good matchup in Washington if you want to gamble, but plenty of risk as well.
Clayton Richard (SF, @CIN) - Showing good command and ability to keep the ball on the ground. Good matchup at home against the Giants, but a bit dicey on the road against the Reds.
Randy Wells (NYM, MIL) – Still showing good command, but has allowed 16 hits in 12.1 innings.
Chris Volstad (@HOU, @COL) - The ONLY reason to think of starting Volstad this week is because he faces the Astros, who’s offense is down right offensive right now. I don’t like him at Colorado one bit.
Rick Porcello (@LAA, @TEX) – Still not showing any strikeout potential and heads to Texas.
Homer Bailey (LAD, SD) - Still too many walks. Lack of command has als led to 15 hits in 10.1 innings.
Brett Myers (FLA, PIT) – Myers hasn’t pitched all that bad so far, but he will certainly not be getting much help from his offense or defense.
Dave Bush (@PIT, CHC) – He has looked OK early, but upside is limited.
Scott Kazmir (DET, NYY) – Got rocked by the Yanks in his first start of the season returning from a minor injury. He’ll see them again in week three. He also couldn’t locate his pitches, which has been a big problem in the past.
Jeff Niemann (@BOS, TOR) – Coming off of a minor injury and facing two decent offenses.
Brandon Morrow (KC, TB) – If he had a clue where the ball was going once it left his hand, maybe I’d consider him an actual starting pitcher.
Tim Wakefield (TEX, BAL)
Dontrelle Willis (@LAA, @TEX) – 7:5 K:BB in 11 innings
Jonathan Niese (CHC, ATL)
Brian Bannister (@TOR, MIN) – Love the command, but can’t trust such a low strikeout rate.
Kyle Kendrick (@ATL, @ARI)- Going up against Tommy Hanson and Dan Haren. Also, he’s not that good.
Doug Fister (BAL, @CWS) - Pitched well in his last outing, but against a poor A’s offense. Very low strikeout potential, very high risk.
Scott Olsen (COL, LAD)
Charlie Morton (MIL, HOU) – Interesting 9:1 K:BB rate, but hasn’t walked anyone because they’re ripping line drives all over the field.
Craig Stammen (COL, LAD)