Two-Start Starting Pitcher Streamers for Week 4
This will be a season-long, weekly piece on under-the-radar, two-start pitchers whom you should consider picking up for the following week of play. In weekly leagues, we know your attention turns to the next week as soon as lineups lock on Monday – this post will always be published well enough in advance to give you ample time to prepare for the coming week.
The names that will appear on this list will not be your obvious, must-start guys who are likely already owned. It does you no good for me to tell you to start Clayton Kershaw and Stephen Strasburg. Instead, I’ll look at starting pitchers who are less than ~50% owned. These arms are worth taking a look at if you’re investigating two-start options for the following week.
Scott Feldman, HOU - 40% Owned
Projected starts: Tuesday @ SEA, Sunday vs. OAK. I originally had Cardinals pitcher Joe Kelly in this spot, but recent news of his DL visit required me to call an audible at the line of scrimmage (hence the delay of this post). So we'll go with Scott Feldman and his 0.44 ERA and 0.73 WHIP, which I guess isn't so bad. Feldman has been lights-out so far this season, as he's been able to quiet those who were dubious of his 2013 success, at least so far. One more quality start from the righty and his ownership will continue on an upward trend, so do yourself a favor and grab him now before your fellow stream-thirsty owners start thinking about it. Feldman gets a start in the pitcher-friendly confines of Safeco Field, followed by a home start versus the A's, neither of which should create a high level of concern. He's a good two-start option for this week, and perhaps beyond.
Wily Peralta, MIL - 19% Owned
Projected starts: Monday vs. SD, Sunday vs. CHC. Another pitcher who gets two above-average matchups next week. San Diego’s bats continue to stay quiet, and the Cubs are certainly no juggernaut, either. Both teams are well below the league average in runs scored per game, as well as in the top 10 for hitter strikeouts per game. Peralta had a decent amount of hype coming into the 2013 season, but failed to take a significant step forward as a top-of-the line starter. He pitched well in his last start against the Pirates, and should he be able to continue his success twice next week. He’s a nice streaming option for Week 4 and is quite underowned right now.
Dan Straily, OAK - 44% Owned
Projected starts: Monday vs. TEX, Saturday @HOU. Straily was a strikeout machine coming up in the minors, but it hasn’t quite translated to the majors yet. He is still a good pitcher in a very strong A’s rotation-- I'm actually a bit surprised that he isn’t more widely owned. Last time out, Straily got blown up by the Angels, but he mowed down the Twins before that, throwing seven scoreless innings. While pitching against Texas on Monday is a tough matchup, he does get them at home in the spacious Oakland Coliseum, followed by a weak Astros lineup on Saturday, which averages fewer than three runs per game-- good for third-to-last in all of baseball.
Ian Kennedy, SD - 58% Owned
Projected starts: Tuesday @ MIL, Sunday @ WAS. Full disclosure: I have always been a big fan of Kennedy. But given his inconsistencies ever since the outstanding 2011 season, I can understand why people have some hesitation here-- he quite simply has not been the same pitcher since. The move to San Diego has provided him with a bit of a fresh start, though, and he is coming off a very solid start on Thursday night vs. Colorado in which a bad 3-run 7th inning blemished an otherwise masterful start. His Week 4 matchups are a tad dicey, but even though both Milwaukee and Washington can score runs, they are above the league average for strikeouts per game. Be careful with the former Diamondback, but know that he’s not a bad choice if you’re looking for two-start streamers-- especially if you need some strikeouts.
Edinson Volquez, PIT - 13% Owned
Projected starts: Monday vs. CIN, Saturday @ STL. Volquez has had a bit of resurgence this season, at least in the early going. It wasn’t so long ago that he was on the front-end of the Reds rotation. I’m including him in this list as a wildcard option. He is coming off consecutive solid starts vs. a hot Brewers offense that was in the midst of a nine-game winning streak. Volquez is limiting the free passes, holding on to a strong WHIP just under 1.00. I’m feeling that he can put up a good performance against his former squad on Monday, and then find some success against a Cardinals offense which, despite Wednesday's eight-run outburst, hasn't really found its stride yet in 2014.