June Pitchers Report
June 1, 2014
By Marc Lawrence
Editor’s Note: Marc Lawrence’s pro baseball selections can be purchased on VegasInsider.com this season. Click to win!
April – May
If it’s June, school is out and so too should the NBA playoffs be concluding sometime later this month… we think. It’s also the time of the season when MLB pitchers look to ace exams in hopes of keeping their teams in the pennant chase. To get a better feel on what to expect, let’s examine their results from exams in the past.
Listed below are hurlers that have enjoyed a two-to-one or better success ratio in team starts the last three seasons during the month of June. On the flip side, we’ve also listed pitchers that struggle in June team starts, winning 33% percent or less of their efforts. To qualify pitchers must have made a minimum of 10 starts, with at least one start each June over the last three years.
Note: * designates pitcher was on this list last year.
I’ll be back next month with July’s Good Month Pitchers. Until then, hey batter, batter…
GOOD MONTH PITCHERS:
*Buchholz, Clay (9-0)
The Boston right-hander is in the midst of a horrific season at 2-4 with a Godzilla-sized ERA of 7.02. On May 28 he was placed on the DL for a hyperextended left knee and his return is not known.
Burnett, A. J. (9-4)
After escaping the pressure of the Yankees, Burnett has evolved into a more complete pitcher and really mixes his pitches well. No reason he cannot continue his success of the past this month if he does a better job either working further inside or staying away from left-hand hitters, who are batting .297 against Burnett.
Colon, Bartolo (9-2)
The rotund righty from the Dominican just turned 41 years old and has not had the same kind of success in New York as the past couple of seasons in Oakland. He can have another strong June if he spots his fastball better to hit the catcher’s target.
*Dickey, R. A. (12-4)
While the knuckleballer has not been terrific, he’s lowered his ERA a run and been part of the reason Toronto leapfrogged into first place in the AL East. With the Rogers Centre having the roof open more frequently with summer here, that should add a little more “dance” to Dickey’s main pitch to help his club keep posting wins.
*Sabathia, C. C. (12-4)
The big left-hander was placed on the DL on May 14 with degenerative changes in his right knee and according to manager Joe Girardi, the soonest Sabathia will be back with New York is July.
Scherzer, Max (11-4)
While Scherzer has not been as devastating as he was in 2013, he’s still allowing fewer hits to innings pitched and on pace to have well over 200 strikeouts. Right-hand hitters are right on the Mendoza Line with a .204 batting average against him. Expect the positive results to continue.
*Verlander, Justin (13-5)
It has been unusual season to say the least for Verlander. For the first time since 2008, he’s well below a punch-out per inning (27.2 percent lower) and if he continues to dole out free passes at this rate, he could set a career high for walks. The velocity and command have not been there, will the warmer weather help Verlander heat up, or is something simply not right?
*Wilson, C. J. (13-3)
Though he’s behind the pace that made him a 17-game winner a season ago, Wilson’s other numbers are all better to this point of the season which suggests he could be a big winner the rest of the way. In his past 10 outings he has a sharp 2.54 ERA and he’s devouring those to the left side of the plate in the batter’s box, holding them to a .194 average.
Zimmermann, Jordan (13-3)
The Wisconsin native season has gone like his team, not so hot, surrendering 38 base hits in 26.2 innings in May, not once getting beyond the sixth inning. This is uncharacteristic for Zimmermann who is usually very consistent. Let’s see if he turns it around this month and throws like he has in the past compared to opposing hitter’s raking him for .307 BA this season.
BAD MONTH PITCHERS:
Bailey, Homer (2-9)
The Reds righty might be 5-3 as the month starts, but his winning record will not last long if his ERA is still remains around 5 and opposing batters continue to club him at a .295 BA rate. Bailey’s been like a batting practice pitcher versus lefties, who are hitting an astonishing .380 against him.
*Fister, Doug (3-10)
Fister did not join the Washington rotation until May 9 because of injury and has thrown fairly well to this point. A good chunk of the losses in June were thanks to sorry Seattle clubs he toiled for. But given the Nationals scoring woes and disturbing defense, Fister might have to be great to alter his previous fortunes.
*Guthrie, Jeremy (4-9)
A middle of the rotation starter, Guthrie had a couple poor outings in May to help ‘raise’ his ERA to 4.14; however, he’s also been a victim of lack of run support and should have a better record than 2-4. While it is not a vast number of starts, be aware Guthrie has an ERA of over 6 in day games this season.
*Nolasco, Ricky (4-12)
Minnesota must have no pitching prospects ready to join the big club because how else could you explain starting Nolasco with a 6.12 ERA, with opponents hitting a robust .322 against his very hittable tosses.
*Norris, Bud (4-10)
No hiding from this fact, any baseball bettor would at least consider Norris when he’s pitching at home, but put a road uniform on him and he is 15-32 for his career and definite play against material.
*Sanchez, Anibal (4-8)
Throughout his career, Sanchez has never been a pitcher who has received proper run support. Though the Tigers offense has been solid most of the season, Sanchez has a .500 record with a stellar 2.49 ERA and opposing batters have a feeble .183 BA against him. If Detroit scores, he could reverse past indiscretions. If not, another losing month could occur.
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