STARTERS: H%, S%, hr/f anomalies 2017

When looking for mid-season SP buy-low or sell-high targets, one effective method is to target those with extreme hit (H%), strand (S%), and HR per flyball (hr/f) rates. In many cases, those extreme marks stand the best shot at regressing over the remainder of the season.

These starting pitchers have posted the most extreme H% so far in 2017:

  • Hit Rate (H%) Outliers, 2017 YTD*
    
    Name                League  ERA   WHIP  BPV  H%
    ==================  ======  ====  ====  ===  ===
    Tillman, Chris          AL  7.90  2.14    8  40%
    Glasnow, Tyler          NL  7.45  1.91   41  38%
    Gausman, Kevin          AL  5.85  1.76   50  37%
    Colon, Bartolo          AL  8.14  1.78   54  37%
    Salazar, Danny          AL  5.50  1.59  111  37%
    Norris, Daniel          AL  5.29  1.67   56  37%
    Corbin, Patrick         NL  4.71  1.53  109  36%
    Boyd, Matt              AL  5.69  1.77   25  36%
    Moore, Matt             NL  6.04  1.69   49  36%
    Porcello, Rick          AL  4.75  1.43  115  36%
    Perez, Martin           AL  4.60  1.67   41  36%
    Wainwright, Adam        NL  5.20  1.49   92  36%
    Tomlin, Josh            AL  5.90  1.42  111  35%
    Miley, Wade             AL  4.97  1.75   38  35%
    Wacha, Michael          NL  4.10  1.42   99  35%
    Peacock, Brad           AL  3.18  1.39   93  35%
    Gsellman, Robert        NL  6.38  1.64   66  35%
    Eickhoff, Jerad         NL  4.63  1.51   71  35%
    Hahn, Jesse             AL  5.51  1.52   57  35%
    Bauer, Trevor           AL  5.24  1.41  116  35%
    ------------------------------------------------
    Name                League  ERA   WHIP  BPV  H%
    ==================  ======  ====  ====  ===  ===
    Hamels, Cole            AL  3.51  1.07   37  22%
    Kennedy, Ian            AL  4.45  1.17   58  22%
    Santana, Ervin          AL  2.99  1.08   64  23%
    Keuchel, Dallas         AL  1.67  0.87  135  23%
    Miranda, Ariel          AL  4.15  1.15   51  23%
    Lynn, Lance             NL  3.61  1.13   77  23%
    Clevinger, Mike         AL  3.02  1.16   67  23%
    Urena, Jose             NL  3.80  1.18   39  24%
    Godley, Zack            NL  2.58  0.95  116  24%
    Scherzer, Max           NL  2.10  0.78  184  24%
    Straily, Dan            NL  3.31  1.05   99  25%
    Hellickson, Jeremy      NL  4.49  1.24   33  25%
    Guerra, Junior          NL  4.78  1.59  -13  26%
    Gaviglio, Sam           AL  4.31  1.33   42  26%
    Martinez, Nick          AL  4.79  1.26   45  26%
    Harvey, Matt            NL  5.25  1.45   27  26%
    Kershaw, Clayton        NL  2.18  0.88  177  26%
    *min 40 IP

These guys have posted the most helpful or damaging strand rates:

  • Strand Rate (S%) Outliers, 2017 YTD*
    
    Name                League  ERA   WHIP  BPV  S%
    ==================  ======  ====  ====  ===  ===
    Colon, Bartolo          AL  8.14  1.78   54  54%
    Koehler, Tom            NL  8.00  1.73   30  58%
    Lamet, Dinelson         NL  5.93  1.24  143  59%
    Weaver, Jered           NL  7.44  1.49   38  60%
    Garrett, Amir           NL  7.41  1.56   36  60%
    Jimenez, Ubaldo         AL  7.25  1.61   10  60%
    Biagini, Joe            AL  5.60  1.41   95  61%
    Gallardo, Yovani        AL  6.30  1.57   43  61%
    Arroyo, Bronson         NL  7.35  1.59   46  61%
    Williams, Trevor        NL  4.69  1.20   89  61%
    Tomlin, Josh            AL  5.90  1.42  111  62%
    Hahn, Jesse             AL  5.51  1.52   57  62%
    Eflin, Zach             NL  6.13  1.43   63  63%
    Musgrove, Joe           AL  6.04  1.48   87  63%
    Gsellman, Robert        NL  6.38  1.64   66  64%
    Glasnow, Tyler          NL  7.45  1.91   41  64%
    Samardzija, Jeff        NL  4.58  1.15  167  64%
    ------------------------------------------------
    Name                League  ERA   WHIP  BPV  S%
    ==================  ======  ====  ====  ===  ===
    Keuchel, Dallas         AL  1.67  0.87  135  87%
    Kershaw, Clayton        NL  2.18  0.88  177  86%
    Gonzalez, Gio           NL  2.86  1.23   74  82%
    Taillon, Jameson        NL  2.73  1.34   97  82%
    Vargas, Jason           AL  2.62  1.15   77  82%
    Ray, Robbie             NL  2.97  1.22  113  82%
    Happ, J.A.              AL  3.54  1.25  126  81%
    Wood, Alex              NL  1.79  0.94  173  81%
    Karns, Nathan           AL  3.43  1.12  145  80%
    Scherzer, Max           NL  2.10  0.78  184  80%
    Santana, Ervin          AL  2.99  1.08   64  80%
    Guerra, Junior          NL  4.78  1.59  -13  80%
    Fiers, Mike             AL  3.84  1.32   80  80%
    Andriese, Matt          AL  3.54  1.31   87  80%
    *min 40 IP

Finally, the following SP own the most extreme hr/f rates so far in 2017:

  • HR Per Flyball Rate (hr/f) Outliers, 2017 YTD*
    
    Name                League  ERA   WHIP  BPV  hr/f
    ==================  ======  ====  ====  ===  ====
    Weaver, Jered           NL  7.44  1.49   38   29%
    Garrett, Amir           NL  7.41  1.56   36   28%
    Anderson, Tyler         NL  6.21  1.54   92   25%
    Hernandez, Felix        AL  4.44  1.46  105   25%
    Koehler, Tom            NL  8.00  1.73   30   23%
    Salazar, Danny          AL  5.50  1.59  111   23%
    Jimenez, Ubaldo         AL  7.25  1.61   10   23%
    Tanaka, Masahiro        AL  5.47  1.37  126   23%
    Pineda, Michael         AL  4.39  1.29  131   23%
    Harvey, Matt            NL  5.25  1.45   27   22%
    Gaviglio, Sam           AL  4.31  1.33   42   22%
    Ryu, Hyun-Jin           NL  4.46  1.44  107   22%
    Velasquez, Vincent      NL  5.58  1.46   89   22%
    Lackey, John            NL  5.20  1.33   88   21%
    Chatwood, Tyler         NL  4.42  1.42   37   21%
    Gibson, Kyle            AL  6.31  1.77   17   21%
    Guerra, Junior          NL  4.78  1.59  -13   21%
    Fiers, Mike             AL  3.84  1.32   80   20%
    Karns, Nathan           AL  3.43  1.12  145   20%
    Nolasco, Ricky          AL  5.06  1.40   85   20%
    Perdomo, Luis           NL  4.54  1.46   92   20%
    deGrom, Jacob           NL  3.65  1.22  131   20%
    -------------------------------------------------
    Name                League  ERA   WHIP  BPV  hr/f
    ==================  ======  ====  ====  ===  ====
    Peacock, Brad           AL  3.18  1.39   93    3%
    McCarthy, Brandon       NL  3.12  1.13   73    5%
    Wood, Alex              NL  1.79  0.94  173    6%
    Butler, Eddie           NL  3.86  1.44  -14    6%
    Hoffman, Jeff           NL  4.09  1.16   88    6%
    Lively, Ben             NL  3.80  1.38    9    7%
    Fulmer, Michael         AL  3.19  1.12   90    7%
    Hahn, Jesse             AL  5.51  1.52   57    7%
    Paxton, James           AL  3.21  1.18  113    7%
    Cashner, Andrew         AL  3.54  1.43    0    7%
    *min 40 IP

Let's take a closer look at several guys worth selling or buying based on their extreme H%, S%, or hr/f rates.
 

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Kevin Gausman (RHP, BAL) remains a very risky bet to provide significant value in the second half given his horrible first half (5.85 ERA, 1.76 WHIP). That said, Gausman has shown some underlying growth over the past month (12% SwK%, 64% FpK%), and given his prior upside, he's someone who could turn things around quickly.

Cole Hamels (LHP, TEX) has comforted his owners with a 3.51 ERA and 1.07 WHIP, but owners viewing him as the same-old Hamels could be in store for disappointment. Hamels owns a poor 37 BPV due to a huge dip in his strikeout rate (4.9 Dom), a decrease that has been validated by his tiny 7% SwK%. He has been saved by a 22% H%. Don't expect that fortune to continue. Now's the time to sell high.

Dallas Keuchel (LHP, HOU) has resembled a legit ace again in 2017 (1.67 ERA, 0.87 WHIP). While his skills support him as an upper-rotation SP (135 BPV), his ace-like stats have been helped a lot by a 23% H% and 87% S%. His 62% FpK% and 37% ball% suggest his control could also erode in the second half.

Joe Musgrove (RHP, HOU) owns a 6+ ERA in mid-July, causing many to dismiss the intrigue he possessed heading into the season. But his underlying skills have been solid (87 BPV), and his command sub-indicators give them even more upside: 11% SwK%, 63% FpK%, 32% ball%. A 33% H%, 63% S%, and 18% hr/f have teamed to tear down his stats.

Rick Porcello (RHP, BOS) has put up a pretty ugly stat line so far in 2017 (4.75 ERA, 1.43 WHIP). Before you give up on him, keep in mind that his skills have been very good (115 BPV). An inflated 36% H% is the real reason for his bad stats. Porcello makes for a very good buy-low target.

Danny Salazar (RHP, CLE) is on the disabled list due to shoulder soreness. If he can get his arm sound, there's some sneaky upside here in spite of his terrible 1H stats (5.50 ERA, 1.59 WHIP). Those marks were the result of a 37% H% and 23% hr/f more than shaky skills (111 BPV).

Masahiro Tanaka (RHP, NYY) has been put on the free agent wire in some leagues given his terrible early stats (5.47 ERA, 1.37 WHIP). Those who view this as a time to buy low on Tanaka likely will be rewarded in the second half. His skills have been excellent (126 BPV) and have the full support of a 15% SwK%, 64% FpK%, and 34% ball%. A 33% H%, 67% S%, and 23% hr/f have doomed him.

Josh Tomlin (RHP, CLE) isn't someone you probably want to roster in a shallow league, since his stuff isn't great and he can be hit hard when he doesn't hit his spots. But in a deep league, Tomlin carries some nice upside in the second half. His pre-ASB skills were very good (111 BPV), and his pinpoint control was supported by an elite 70% FpK% and 32% ball%. He has been victimized by a 35% H%, 62% S%, and 15% hr/f.
 

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Tyler Anderson (LHP, COL) is on the DL due to a knee issue. Prior to that, he posted a 6.11 ERA and 1.55 WHIP. But there's legit hope he could have a nice rebound once he gets healthy. His skills have been solid (92 BPV). And few SP have been victimized more by bad luck than Anderson has: 34% H%, 65% S%, 25% hr/f.

Patrick Corbin (LHP, ARI) has hurt a lot of his owners so far in 2017 (4.71 ERA, 1.53 WHIP). Fortunately, those marks have been the result of a 36% H% and 17% hr/f more than a lack of skill (109 BPV). In fact, his skill foundation is supported by a solid 11% SwK% and 66% FpK% combo.

Gio Gonzalez (LHP, WAS) owns a nifty 2.86 ERA and 1.23 WHIP at the All-Star Break. However, those marks don't have much support from his skills (74 BPV). Credit a 27% H% and 82% S% for his nice stats. And few SP have more control downside than Gonzalez does (53% FpK%, 40% ball%).

Dinelson Lamet (RHP, SD) has put up a near-6 ERA after eight starts with SD. But underneath those marks are some really exciting skills: 12.1 Dom, 3.3 Ctl, 37% GB%, 143 BPV. His top-shelf rate of strikeouts is supported by an elite 14% SwK% too. His key will be to limit the HR he allows to lefty bats (3.0 HR/9 vL). With a 3.0 Cmd vs. LHers, he's got the goods to tweak his approach against lefties.

Luis Perdomo (RHP, SD) owns an ugly 4.54 ERA and 1.46 WHIP after 15 starts, leaving him unowned in many leagues. But Perdomo owns a solid skill foundation (92 BPV), driven in large part by a steep groundball tilt (67% GB%). He's dominant against righties (3.6 Cmd vR) but struggles quite a bit against lefties (1.2 Cmd vL). A tweak there would help Perdomo consolidate his skills into better results.

Jeff Samardzija (RHP, SF) remains one of the best buy-low SP targets in the game. His skills this season have been firmly elite (167 BPV). The reason for his poor surface stats (4.58 ERA) can be attributed to a 34% H%, 64% S%, and 17% hr/f. With a 11% SwK%, 64% FpK%, and 32% ball%, Samardzija has all the tools to have an anchor-like second half.

Trevor Williams (RHP, PIT) has a near-5 ERA past the halfway point in the season. But there's reason to think he could be an end-staff stash in deep leagues. His skills as a SP have been pretty good: 6.3 Dom, 1.9 Ctl, 49% GB%, 89 BPV. He has pounded the strike zone out of the rotation (33% ball%). A 61% S% is the real reason for his inflated ERA.


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