Let’s get right to some good waiver wire pitchers this week. If we waste too much time before that, I’m going to spend all of my time taking about how the 49ers are now 2-0 after beating two of 2011′s playoff teams, and I don’t want to do that and become insufferable to you guys.
Plus, I imagine if you’re still going in fantasy baseball, a championship is at least an outside possibility. So, let’s get right to some good waiver wire arms for this week.
Kevin Correia – Pittsburgh Pirates
Probable Starts: at Chicago Cubs, at Houston Astros
Look, I understand that both the Cubs and Astros had better weekends than most of us would have predicted. I also understand that both Wrigley Field and Minute Maid Park can be hitter-friendly. But the fact of the matter is that these are arguably the worst two teams in the league and offensively, they are (not arguably) the worst two teams in the league. Kevin Correia found himself a good week of assignments.
Correia’s problem is that he does allow a lot of base runners. Still, over the last 30 days, his ERA is 2.55, and I don’t know many of you who couldn’t use that on your fantasy team for a week. I say all the time that bringing pitchers in off of the wire is all about minimizing risk. No matter what they’ve done over the last few games, I’ve got a whole season to show that the Cubs and Astros are about as risk-free as you can get.
Correia’s Projections for the week
Chris Tillman - Baltimore Orioles
Probable Starts: at Seattle Mariners, at Boston Red Sox
If at the beginning of the year, you would have told me that I would be advising a pitcher to stream against the Red Sox at Fenway, I would have probably nodded politely but laughed on the inside. If you had told me that said pitcher will face the Mariners at Safeco Field and the Red Sox at Fenway, and Boston would be the safer opponent, I would not have kept that laughter on the inside. Yet, here we are on September 17, and the Red Sox are the safer start for Chris Tillman this week.
Actually, I like both of Tillman’s starts. The Mariners are a heck of a spoiler right now, but Safeco is still a very nice park for pitchers. On top of that, while Tillman’s overall 3.39 ERA and 1.20 WHIP are respectable, his numbers over the last 30 days are 2.70 and 0.96, which is a heck of a lot better than just respectable. I know that Tillman is returning from injury, but he’s a good pitcher for a team in a race, which is a big offsetting factor for any worries about a pitch count.
Plus, with the exception of this last weekend’s series against the similarly magical A’s, the Orioles are just winning ball games right now, which is a big factor when looking at pitchers. I can’t explain it, nobody can, but Baltimore is winning. When the team wins, their pitchers win. When you have a hot pitcher going for a magical team twice in a week, you’d be wise to put that guy on your team.
Tillman’s Projections for the week
Homer Bailey - Cincinnati Reds
Probable Starts: at Chicago Cubs, vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
Everything that was said above about Correia’s start against the Cubs applies here. Yes, Wrigley can be tough on the pitcher, but the Cubs haven’t really taken advantage of that a lot this year. So, when I take a step back and see that Homer Bailey has a 2.91 ERA and 1.00 WHIP over the last month, I have to say that I like the matchup.
The Dodgers are inept offensively. Yes, the Dodgers with Shane Victorino, Hanley Ramirez, Matt Kemp, Adrian Gonzalez, and Andre Ethier just can’t get runners across the plate. The Giants fan in me laughs at that, the baseball fan in me wants to figure it out, but the fantasy analyzer in me looks at it and says that pitchers against Los Angeles are strong plays.
Bailey’s Projections for the week