STARTERS: BPV vs. LH/RH, 2016 updated


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Identifying significant SP skill splits and using them to your advantage can be a helpful strategy to get the most out of your starting rotation down the stretch.

In addition, this kind of analysis can help you find hidden skills before they blossom, which can be a big help for those already looking ahead to 2017.

Here, let's take a look at the SP with the widest lefty-righty BPV splits so far in 2016.

First, the SP who own the best skills against RH bats:

  • 100+ BPV vs. RH Bats*
    
    Name                League  Throws  Ctl  Dom   HR/9  GB%  H%   S%   hr/f  BPV
    ==================  ======  ======  ===  ====  ====  ===  ===  ===  ====  ===
    Fernandez, Jose         NL     RHP  1.4  15.3   0.7  33%  35%  72%   10%  248
    Scherzer, Max           NL     RHP  0.5  12.4   1.3  34%  20%  66%   15%  221
    Phelps, David           NL     RHP  1.7  12.9   0.5  42%  32%  83%    6%  205
    Nola, Aaron             NL     RHP  1.4  10.8   0.6  55%  40%  61%   11%  191
    Kershaw, Clayton        NL     LHP  0.7   9.8   0.6  50%  27%  77%    9%  187
    Syndergaard, Noah       NL     RHP  1.2  10.1   0.5  55%  31%  78%    9%  183
    Teheran, Julio          NL     RHP  0.9   9.7   0.9  45%  28%  76%   11%  173
    Maeda, Kenta            NL     RHP  1.4  10.1   0.9  46%  31%  66%   11%  168
    Kluber, Corey           AL     RHP  1.6   9.4   0.7  48%  27%  66%    9%  152
    Pineda, Michael         AL     RHP  2.0  10.2   1.7  45%  34%  59%   19%  152
    Strasburg, Stephen      NL     RHP  2.2  10.7   0.8  38%  31%  74%    9%  150
    Anderson, Tyler         NL     LHP  1.1   7.9   1.1  57%  33%  71%   16%  146
    deGrom, Jacob           NL     RHP  2.0   9.6   1.1  48%  32%  83%   14%  145
    Paxton, James           AL     LHP  1.5   8.7   0.7  48%  37%  72%    8%  142
    Hellickson, Jeremy      NL     RHP  1.0   7.8   1.2  49%  26%  64%   16%  141
    Arrieta, Jake           NL     RHP  1.8   8.7   0.6  55%  26%  69%   10%  140
    Martinez, Carlos        NL     RHP  2.0   8.7   0.3  59%  26%  76%    4%  140
    Shoemaker, Matt         AL     RHP  2.0   9.5   1.4  45%  36%  73%   14%  139
    Fulmer, Michael         AL     RHP  2.1   9.4   1.3  49%  28%  78%   16%  138
    Ross, Joe               AL     RHP  1.2   7.9   0.8  49%  26%  63%   12%  138
    Wood, Alex              NL     LHP  2.4   9.7   0.8  51%  31%  81%   14%  138
    Eickhoff, Jerad         NL     RHP  1.6   8.9   1.0  43%  31%  74%   11%  138
    Ramirez, Erasmo         AL     RHP  1.2   7.3   1.0  59%  30%  72%   15%  135
    Price, David            AL     LHP  2.3   9.7   1.1  44%  34%  67%   15%  135
    Lackey, John            AL     RHP  1.8   9.4   1.4  36%  23%  67%   15%  134
    Duffy, Danny            AL     LHP  2.0   9.8   1.2  31%  28%  76%   11%  131
    McHugh, Collin          AL     RHP  1.9   9.1   1.2  40%  37%  72%   11%  130
    Bumgarner, Madison      NL     LHP  2.3   9.6   1.0  40%  28%  86%   11%  128
    Hill, Rich              AL     LHP  4.3  12.4   0.3  42%  33%  81%    4%  127
    Archer, Chris           AL     RHP  3.2  10.4   1.4  47%  33%  75%   17%  126
    Matz, Steven            NL     LHP  2.3   9.1   1.1  45%  33%  77%   14%  125
    Pomeranz, Drew          AL     LHP  3.6  10.7   1.2  50%  27%  73%   15%  125
    Kennedy, Ian            AL     RHP  2.5   9.6   1.6  40%  29%  80%   16%  124
    Porcello, Rick          AL     RHP  1.4   7.5   1.4  47%  29%  66%   16%  122
    Cueto, Johnny           NL     RHP  1.7   7.8   0.7  48%  27%  72%    8%  122
    Feldman, Scott          AL     RHP  0.9   6.9   0.9  43%  30%  59%   10%  122
    Stroman, Marcus         AL     RHP  1.8   7.2   0.9  60%  30%  71%   16%  121
    Gray, Jon               NL     RHP  2.5   9.3   1.0  44%  31%  64%   13%  120
    Norris, Bud             AL     RHP  2.1   8.3   0.6  48%  29%  68%    7%  119
    Roark, Tanner           NL     RHP  1.9   7.7   0.8  55%  33%  71%   14%  119
    Verlander, Justin       AL     RHP  2.1   8.7   1.2  39%  28%  68%   11%  117
    Young, Chris            AL     RHP  2.1   8.9   2.1  35%  26%  65%   16%  117
    Nova, Ivan              NL     RHP  2.3   8.0   1.9  57%  31%  66%   25%  116
    Ray, Robbie             NL     LHP  3.7  10.9   1.4  43%  38%  72%   16%  116
    Harvey, Matt            NL     RHP  1.8   7.4   0.8  53%  34%  67%   12%  116
    Hammel, Jason           NL     RHP  1.5   7.3   0.9  47%  24%  85%   11%  115
    Walker, Taijuan         AL     RHP  2.1   8.0   1.2  46%  37%  74%   13%  113
    Colon, Bartolo          NL     RHP  1.1   6.2   0.5  52%  33%  77%    8%  112
    Sale, Chris             AL     LHP  2.2   8.6   1.0  38%  27%  76%   10%  111
    Andriese, Matt          AL     RHP  1.5   7.1   0.6  46%  28%  65%    6%  111
    Gausman, Kevin          AL     RHP  2.5   8.5   2.2  48%  34%  73%   26%  110
    Kazmir, Scott           NL     LHP  3.5  10.5   1.6  37%  33%  71%   17%  110
    Peavy, Jake             NL     RHP  2.3   8.3   1.4  44%  32%  63%   13%  109
    Wisler, Matt            NL     RHP  1.5   7.6   1.8  35%  29%  69%   14%  109
    Velasquez, Vincent      NL     RHP  2.9   9.6   1.0  36%  31%  76%   10%  109
    Carrasco, Carlos        AL     RHP  2.2   7.6   1.3  52%  23%  69%   16%  109
    Nicasio, Juan           NL     RHP  3.3   9.8   0.4  42%  29%  62%    4%  109
    Lester, Jon             NL     LHP  2.6   8.6   1.4  45%  26%  79%   16%  106
    Nolasco, Ricky          AL     RHP  1.9   7.4   1.8  45%  34%  57%   16%  106
    Straily, Dan            NL     RHP  1.9   8.1   1.2  32%  25%  78%   10%  105
    Tomlin, Josh            NL     RHP  1.4   7.0   1.8  37%  33%  71%   16%  105
    Santana, Ervin          AL     RHP  1.9   7.9   1.3  35%  33%  71%   11%  104
    DeSclafani, Anthony     NL     RHP  2.7   8.6   0.3  44%  24%  79%    4%  104
    Leake, Mike             NL     RHP  1.2   5.9   0.8  52%  34%  60%   10%  104
    Foltynewicz, Mike       NL     RHP  2.1   7.4   1.2  50%  31%  77%   14%  103
    Hendricks, Kyle         NL     RHP  2.5   7.7   0.8  53%  24%  75%   11%  102
    Gee, Dillon             AL     RHP  2.1   7.6   1.9  44%  32%  78%   18%  102
    Tanaka, Masahiro        AL     RHP  2.2   7.6   1.0  47%  30%  70%   12%  101
    Davies, Zach            NL     RHP  2.3   7.4   0.9  53%  27%  67%   12%  101
    Guerra, Junior          NL     RHP  2.0   7.2   0.8  45%  25%  70%    8%  100
    Bradley, Archie         NL     RHP  3.3   9.2   0.9  43%  27%  59%   10%  100
    *min 30 IP

Next, the guys with the best skills vs. LH bats:

  • 100+ BPV vs. LH Bats*
    
    Name                League  Throws  Ctl  Dom   HR/9  GB%  H%   S%   hr/f  BPV
    ==================  ======  ======  ===  ====  ====  ===  ===  ===  ====  ===
    Kershaw, Clayton        NL     LHP  0.6  13.7   0.0  48%  29%  83%    0%  256
    McCullers, Lance        AL     RHP  4.2  14.6   0.5  59%  46%  81%   13%  184
    Ray, Robbie             NL     LHP  2.1  11.2   0.5  56%  37%  68%   11%  178
    Syndergaard, Noah       NL     RHP  2.9  12.2   0.7  46%  43%  80%   10%  165
    Strasburg, Stephen      NL     RHP  2.9  11.3   0.9  44%  26%  79%   11%  146
    Duffey, Tyler           AL     RHP  1.4   8.0   0.9  52%  35%  71%   13%  137
    Pineda, Michael         AL     RHP  3.4  11.5   1.2  44%  37%  72%   16%  136
    Cueto, Johnny           NL     RHP  2.0   8.8   0.7  52%  34%  78%   10%  134
    Keuchel, Dallas         AL     LHP  1.4   7.2   0.6  62%  29%  74%   10%  133
    Greinke, Zack           AL     RHP  1.5   8.1   1.2  49%  33%  73%   15%  132
    Tanaka, Masahiro        AL     RHP  1.1   7.2   0.7  50%  29%  77%   10%  127
    Price, David            AL     LHP  1.4   7.5   0.9  51%  35%  74%   12%  126
    Odorizzi, Jake          AL     RHP  2.4   9.6   1.1  41%  24%  85%   12%  125
    Quintana, Jose          AL     LHP  1.3   7.1   0.5  53%  26%  73%    7%  125
    Verlander, Justin       AL     RHP  2.8  10.4   0.9  32%  28%  76%    9%  123
    Gausman, Kevin          AL     RHP  1.9   8.9   1.0  33%  30%  80%    9%  119
    Cole, Gerrit            NL     RHP  2.8   9.8   0.2  40%  40%  82%    2%  119
    Salazar, Danny          AL     RHP  3.4  10.4   1.0  43%  28%  74%   12%  116
    Archer, Chris           AL     RHP  3.7  10.6   1.3  45%  31%  69%   17%  114
    Kluber, Corey           AL     RHP  2.5   8.8   0.6  44%  29%  73%    8%  113
    Nicasio, Juan           AL     RHP  3.8  10.6   2.4  44%  40%  72%   25%  111
    Porcello, Rick          AL     RHP  1.6   7.4   0.7  43%  28%  77%    7%  110
    Fernandez, Jose         AL     RHP  4.0  10.5   0.7  48%  34%  79%   12%  109
    Walker, Taijuan         AL     RHP  1.9   8.0   2.5  40%  18%  77%   22%  109
    deGrom, Jacob           AL     RHP  2.0   7.6   0.4  45%  28%  80%    5%  107
    Devenski, Chris         AL     RHP  2.4   8.9   0.5  33%  31%  76%    6%  107
    Leake, Mike             NL     RHP  1.7   6.6   1.6  55%  29%  72%   23%  107
    Gray, Jon               NL     RHP  3.3   9.5   1.1  45%  28%  70%   15%  106
    Carrasco, Carlos        AL     RHP  3.2   9.4   1.5  44%  28%  88%   18%  105
    Tomlin, Josh            AL     RHP  1.0   5.8   1.9  48%  24%  80%   20%  104
    Hendricks, Kyle         AL     RHP  2.2   7.4   0.5  50%  27%  91%    7%  102
    Fiers, Mike             AL     RHP  1.7   6.9   1.3  44%  30%  65%   16%  100
    Bauer, Trevor           AL     RHP  2.8   8.9   0.7  37%  32%  70%    7%  100
    *min 30 IP

Finally, here are the SP with the widest skill splits when facing RH and LH bats:

  • BPV vs. RH/LH Bats*
    
    Name                League  Throws  BPV vs. RH  BPV vs. LH  Diff
    ==================  ======  ======  ==========  ==========  ====
    Teheran, Julio          NL     RHP         173          34  -139
    Fernandez, Jose         NL     RHP         248         109  -138
    Scherzer, Max           NL     RHP         221          98  -123
    Straily, Dan            NL     RHP         105         -18  -123
    Martinez, Carlos        NL     RHP         140          26  -114
    Miller, Shelby          NL     RHP          77         -36  -113
    Maeda, Kenta            NL     RHP         168          57  -110
    Ross, Joe               NL     RHP         138          30  -108
    Bradley, Archie         NL     RHP         100          -2  -102
    Buchholz, Clay          NL     RHP          62         -39  -101
    Hellickson, Jeremy      NL     RHP         141          41  -100
    Nola, Aaron             NL     RHP         191          95   -96
    Wisler, Matt            NL     RHP         109          22   -88
    Peavy, Jake             NL     RHP         109          24   -85
    Fulmer, Michael         AL     RHP         138          55   -83
    Norris, Bud             NL     RHP         119          37   -82
    Gee, Dillon             NL     RHP         102          21   -81
    Pomeranz, Drew          AL     LHP         125          44   -81
    Hammel, Jason           NL     RHP         115          35   -80
    Hernandez, Felix        AL     RHP          99          20   -80
    Nelson, Jimmy           NL     RHP          72           2   -70
    Arrieta, Jake           NL     RHP         140          74   -66
    Kennedy, Ian            NL     RHP         124          59   -65
    Eickhoff, Jerad         NL     RHP         138          73   -65
    Roark, Tanner           NL     RHP         119          56   -63
    Lewis, Colby            AL     RHP          98          37   -61
    Rea, Colin              NL     RHP          75          15   -60
    Chacin, Jhoulys         AL     RHP          90          32   -58
    Harvey, Matt            NL     RHP         116          59   -57
    Guerra, Junior          NL     RHP         100          47   -53
    Tropeano, Nick          AL     RHP          88          36   -53
    Lackey, John            NL     RHP         134          81   -53
    Finnegan, Brandon       NL     LHP          25         -26   -52
    ----------------------------------------------------------------
    McCullers, Lance        AL     RHP          47         184  +137
    Verrett, Logan          NL     RHP         -16          60   +76
    Kershaw, Clayton        NL     LHP         187         256   +69
    Duffey, Tyler           AL     RHP          68         137   +69
    Ray, Robbie             NL     LHP         116         178   +62
    Odorizzi, Jake          AL     RHP          65         125   +61
    Bauer, Trevor           AL     RHP          41         100   +58
    Cole, Gerrit            NL     RHP          68         119   +50
    Gray, Sonny             AL     RHP          49          98   +49
    Locke, Jeff             NL     LHP          15          60   +46
    Keuchel, Dallas         AL     LHP          91         133   +42
    Greinke, Zack           NL     RHP          96         132   +36
    Fiers, Mike             AL     RHP          67         100   +33
    Cain, Matt              NL     RHP          33          65   +32
    Quintana, Jose          AL     LHP          97         125   +29
    Tanaka, Masahiro        AL     RHP         101         127   +26
    *min 30 IP vs. LH, RH bats
    
    
    

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Chris Devenski (RHP, HOU) is someone worth keeping an eye on if you play in a deep league. While he hasn't started a game for HOU since May, his skills in the second half suggest he could stick as a SP once he gets another shot: 21/3 K/BB in 20 IP. Behind that flash of elite command is a strong 14% SwK% and 67% FpK%. He also has posted very nice aggregate skills against LH bats: 8.9 Dom, 2.4 Ctl, 33% GB%, 107 BPV.

Tyler Duffey (RHP, MIN) still carries surface stats that would damage any fantasy rotation (5.93 ERA, 1.49 WHIP). That said, he has looked excellent in a tiny two-start sample so far in August: 14/1 K/BB in 12 IP with a 13% SwK% and 72% FpK%. Digging deeper, Duffey has been able to handcuff lefty bats (137 BPV) but hasn't fared that well against righties (68 BPV). A tweak there could help him stick as a mid-rotation guy.

Danny Duffy (LHP, KC) has emerged as an upper-tier SP since re-entering the KC rotation in May, and he hasn't done so by feasting only on LH bats. His skills have been excellent against RHers too: 9.8 Dom, 2.0 Ctl, 31% GB%, 131 BPV. Adding a groundball pitch to his repertoire is the last piece he needs to stick as an impact SP.

Kevin Gausman (RHP, BAL) has posted a 110+ BPV against both LH and RH bats so far in 2016. And his surface stats against lefties have been ace-like (2.75 ERA, 1.11 WHIP). Those marks have eroded a lot against RHers (5.19 ERA, 1.48 WHIP), but that has been due to an inflated 26% hr/f more than anything else. As that mark comes down, so too will his ERA.

Felix Hernandez (RHP, SEA) used to be a sure-fire rotation anchor worth starting every time he took the ball. This season, not so much. His skills have been terrible against LHers: 6.7 Dom, 4.8 Ctl, 53% GB%, 20 BPV. The only reason he has a 3.02 ERA against them has been due to a friendly 82% S%, which we can't bank on continuing. And his prior dominance against righties is on shaky footing too, as his skills against them are more good than great (99 BPV). The window to sell high on Hernandez in keeper leagues is closing quickly.

Lance McCullers (RHP, HOU) quietly has put up the best skills against LH bats by anyone not named Kershaw: 14.6 Dom, 4.2 Ctl, 59% GB%, 184 BPV. He owns a bad 1.54 WHIP against them due to a crazy 46% H%. With a tweak against same-sided bats (47 BPV), McCullers would gain the consistency needed for him to become an upper-tier SP.

James Paxton (LHP, SEA) is another blossoming SP whose LH/RH splits indicate that he has the goods for long-term success. His skills against opposite-sided batters have been near-elite: 8.7 Dom, 1.5 Ctl, 48% GB%, 142 BPV. He'll enter 2017 as a premium breakout target.
 

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Tyler Anderson (LHP, COL) quietly owns a near-3.00 ERA that most owners won't be aware of. And it's a mark that comes with nearly full skill support (115 BPV, 3.46 xERA). In addition, the lefty Anderson has been pretty lethal against RH bats: 7.9 Dom, 1.1 Ctl, 57% GB%, 146 BPV. As a GB pitcher who can miss bats, Anderson remains a good end-rotation option in deep leagues.

Archie Bradley (RHP, ARI) has posted bad stats after 16 starts with ARI (4.80 ERA, 1.51 WHIP). A closer look shows that those are the direct result of terrible stats and skills against lefties: 5.06 ERA, 2.06 WHIP, -2 BPV. His upside starts to come out against RH bats: 9.2 Dom, 3.3 Ctl, 43% GB%, 100 BPV.

Ivan Nova (RHP, PIT) has a chance to provide some nice value down the stretch. His skills against RHers in 2016 have been very good (116 BPV). He has a 5+ ERA against them solely due to a 25% hr/f, a mark that was likely inflated due to Yankee Stadium.

David Phelps (RHP, MIA) is transitioning to a starting role in the MIA rotation, and before you dismiss his ability to stick there, note that his skills against RHers have been better than any pitcher in MLB not named Fernandez or Scherzer: 52/7 K/BB in 36 IP. That elite command has produced a 205 BPV. His struggles come against lefties, against whom he has a poor 1.4 Cmd. So, you'll want to sit him against strong lefty lineups, but he makes for a high-upside play against RH-leaning lineups.

Robbie Ray (LHP, ARI) is one of a select number of SP who can claim a 100+ BPV against both LH and RH bats. He has been untouchable against lefties (178 BPV), but he also has been very good against RHers: 10.9 Dom, 3.7 Ctl, 43% GB%, 116 BPV. If he can keep his walks under control, Ray will continue to make for an excellent speculation.

Joe Ross (RHP, WAS) is a step away from starting to fulfill the skill upside that comes out when he faces RH bats (138 BPV). His command erodes him when he faces southpaws: 6.9 Dom, 4.1 Ctl, 39% GB%, 30 BPV. A tweak there would help him show sustained growth. At age 23, he's got time, as long as his shoulder is sound.

Dan Straily (RHP, CIN) has struggled against lefties for years, a weakness that has prevented him from sticking as a viable mid-rotation SP until this season. Problem is, that problem has continued during his mini-breakout this year: 6.0 Dom, 5.1 Ctl, 33% GB%, -18 BPV. His stats (2.91 ERA, 0.99 WHIP) and skills (105 BPV) show life when he faces RH bats, but they aren't good enough to make up for his significant struggles against lefties.

Julio Teheran (RHP, ATL) has completely handcuffed RH bats so far in 2016: 9.7 Dom, 0.9 Ctl, 45% GB%, 173 BPV. On the flip side, his skills vs. LH haven't even been roster-worthy: 6.0 Dom, 3.2 Ctl, 35% GB%, 34 BPV. The only reason he has a 3.19 ERA and 1.10 WHIP against them has been due to a friendly 22% H%. Keep that significant split in mind once he returns from the disabled list and faces lineups with impact lefty bats.


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  For more information about the terms used in this article, see our Glossary Primer.