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Top Five Two-Start Pitcher Streamers & Sleepers for Week 11

Quality over quantity. Every fantasy owner knows this. But when looking at the starting pitcher free agent waiver wire for the coming week, ideally you’d like to have a guy that is going to be on the mound more than once.

Most teams are going to have a couple of starters pitching twice in a week. This in turn raises their value as streaming options and weekly sleepers. In this weekly column, I’ll be looking at my top five two-start pitchers that you should consider streaming for your fantasy teams for the approaching Week 11.

These pitchers are projected to pitch twice in the coming week and are owned in less than 50% of Fleaflicker and Yahoo leagues.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers received five total writing awards and 13 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, tops in the industry! Congrats to all the award winners and nominees including Best MLB Series, NFL Series, NBA Writer, PGA Writer and Player Notes writer of the year. Be sure to follow their analysis, rankings and advice all year long, and win big with RotoBaller! Read More!

 

Erasmo Ramirez, SP, TB

6/15 vs WAS, 6/20 @CLE

Looking at season stats, Erasmo Ramirez’s 4.96 ERA & 1.22 WHIP aren’t great. However, he has vastly improved since being put back in the Ray’s rotation. In his six starts in the last 30 days, he has gone 5-1 with a 2.97 ERA. That certainly justifies him being owned in more than just 10% of Yahoo fantasy leagues. After a breakout 2012 that he has failed to equal since, Ramirez has shown improvements in recent years. His 7.52 K/9 is the best of his career, and his 3.08 BB/9 has improved from last season’s 4.06. What I find most encouraging about Ramirez is his 2015 Swinging Strike % of 13.3%, which is up from a 10.9% last season, and even from his career high 11.3% in 2012.

Color me surprised that I am writing about how you should start a pitcher against the Nationals. The once high powered Washington offense has struggled in June, with their .660 OPS this month being 24th in MLB, whereas their .781 OPS in May was the 4th best in the league. He is also opposing Gio Gonzalez, whose 4.66 ERA the past 40 days should be good for the Rays offense which happens to own left handers. The Indians, who are 12-18 this season when at home, have also found trouble in June. They have a .113 ISO, the fourth worst in the AL, while their 99 wRC+ this month is a far cry from their 122 in May.

 

Robbie Ray, SP, ARI

6/15 @LAA, 6/20 vs SD

For those who could not land anybody else on this list, Robbie Ray is my deep league streamer for the week. In three starts this season, Ray has a 1.53 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, and a 13/5 K/BB rate over 17 2/3 innings. Getting his starts while Archie Bradley is on the DL, Ray is making the most of his time in the Dbacks rotation. His short lifespan as a starter, combined with his productive start to the year make him a perfect streamer for the week.

He starts the week with no easy task, taking on the Angels in Los Angeles. The Angels have been a midlevel offense this year, and their .691 OPS is 22nd in the league this year. Also of note, they are the only team this season to not have a stolen base against a left-handed pitcher, so Ray should not have to worry about the bases once somebody does get on. The Padres have also underachieved after such a busy offseason to revamp their offense. Their OPS is even lower than the Angels at .677, the fourth worst in the league. Their 22.1% strikeout rate is the fifth highest in MLB, which will be nice to help pad your K total during the weekend.

 

Jesse Hahn, SP, OAK

6/15 @SD, 6/20 vs LAA

The Athletics, as most expected, aren’t that good this year. They’re 25-39 on the season, and the only AL team more than 10 games back in their division. However, their struggles have not come from their rotation, as their team 3.65 ERA is the third lowest in the AL, behind only the Rays and Royals. Jesse Hahn has been solid and before he ran into the Rangers' hot bats, Hahn had a streak of five consecutive quality starts. Put that with his 3.84 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 45/16 K/BB rate, and he has the type of middle of the order stuff that screams streamer.

Hahn is facing the same teams as Robbie Ray: the Padres and Angels. So for all the reasons to start Hahn against these teams, scroll back up to see my analysis on them versus Ray.

 

Charlie Morton, SP, PIT

6/16 vs CHW, 6/21 vs WAS

Charlie Morton has had a surprisingly nice start since being brought into the rotation late last month. In four starts, he is a perfect 4-0 with a 2.05 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and a 12/7 K/BB rate over 26 1/3 inning. Morton has never been a big strikeout pitcher, but that should not deter you from not streaming him this week. He has kept the ball on the ground, with a groundball rate of 69%, and his GB/FB rate sits at an astonishing 7.25, way above his 2.44 in 2014.

The Sox have been one of the worst offenses on the year. Their wRC+ of 80 is the third worst in MLB this season, and they have the 29th best OPS on the year at .653. As stated with Erasmo Ramirez, the Nationals are not as dangerous as they look. Their power numbers (.137 ISO in June) should play right into Morton’s pitching style this weekend.

 

Chi Chi Gonzalez, TEX

6/16 vs LAD, 6/21 @ CHW

This guy is still only owned in 33% of Yahoo leagues? How? Since being recalled at the end of May, he has gone 2-1, with his loss coming against the Athletics after giving up a single run in seven innings. That start, his most recent, has been his lone run allowed in 21 2/3 innings. I understand he is only three starts into his major league career, but his numbers cannot be ignored. With that said, he also has his questions. He has an 8/10 K/BB rate, and his 3.88 FIP is much more realistic for him than his 0.42 ERA. With all this said, I still would ride him until his box score stats begin to increase as well.

Facing the Dodgers and White Sox, Gonzalez is lucky to avoid the elite of their pitching staffs, opposing Brett Anderson and Jose Quintana, respectively. The 22-year-old righty does have a tough matchup against Los Angeles, but the White Sox should be a much easier start for Gonzalez. Their 80 wRC+ is 28th in the league, and Quintana’s 2-6 record with a 4.00 ERA this season should benefit fantasy owners looking to stream Gonzalez for a weekend win. Chi-Chi is not a solid streamer for the remainder of the season, and I am playing him this week solely on his ability to get out of situations, and will be dropping him once he comes back down to earth.

Of note, Masahiro Tanaka is scheduled to make two starts this week. I have gotten questions about him, as some smaller leagues have him available due to his injury risks. If he is available in your league, add him over any of the names I mentioned. If he does get hurt again, that is a risk any fantasy owner should be willing to take.

If you have any questions, feel free to message me on Twitter @JustBerglund

 

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