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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

10 Biggest Pitching Fantasy Suprises

Similar to the surprising hitters post, this is meant to highlight pitchers that may be slipping under the radar this year. Again, this is not to highlight people like

Randy Wolf (W, K's) – It’s been years since Wolf was a productive pitcher, but so far this year he’s been excelling especially in Wins & K’s. Yes, we all know wins are a fluky category which can change dramatically by the end of the season, but his ERA/WHIP are respectable (4.06/1.32) and he’s average over 1K/IP.

Zambrano (W) – Yea, everybody knows he’s been getting lit up a lot this year, and his ERA/WHIP are not what you drafted for a starting pitcher. But he does have 7 wins which leaves him with plenty of time to get close to the 16 he had last year.

Valverde (SV) – If asked to name who is 2nd in saves (behind Cordero of course), how many people would name Valverde? He is with 21 and he’s also striking out more than 1 batter/IP. Yes, he’s has some meltdowns but 20/23 is pretty damn good so far.

Borowski (SV) – This is a prime example where his average stats don’t tell the whole picture. Normally when you see a closer with an ERA over 6 (Jose Mesa, Valverde last year, Julio, etc..) it’s time to bail out. But it isn’t the case here. Borowski has only blown 2 saves (technically the AROD Grand Slam wasn’t a save chance when the 9th started). 10 of his 18 ER have come in 2 games—1 BS and the AROD game. Besides that Borowski has been solid and right there among the AL leaders in saves.

Burnett (K's) – His ERA/WHIP are decent, but Burnett has been striking out batters at an amazing pace. He’s already had 4 double-digit K games and in addition 2 8-K and 1 9-K games.

Matt Morris (W/ERA) - Another pitcher that is putting together a fine season completely under the radar. Although he’s not striking people out, Morris has 7 wins, a very solid 2.56 ERA to go with a decent WHIP. Pretty sure he’s not going to keep this up all season, but you know what they say: strike while the iron is hot.

Ian Snell (ERA/K's) – He’s actually ranked ahead of Santana, Verlander, Escobar, Smoltz, Bonderman, Brandon Webb, and others because of his K’s 78 and his great ERA/WHIP 2.63/1.14. Probably won’t end up with more than 12-13 wins because he plays for the Pirates, but all the other peripherals are great.

Rich Hill (ERA/WHIP) – Hill had a great start to the season, then a so-so patch, but has turned it on as late to be a top-8 SP. His good ERA 2.81 and phenomenal WHIP 1.01 to go with 78 K’s show that he’s the real deal. Should hopefully get some more wins as the season progresses.

J.J. Putz (SV, ERA, WHIP) – Putz has been even more dominating than last year with his 1.19 ERA and .66 WHIP. He’s right up there for the AL lead in saves with 19 and we haven’t heard or seen anything regarding that elbow problem he had back in the spring.

Isringhausen (ERA/WHIP) – Isringhausen hasn’t piled up the saves as the Cardinals haven’t been a good ballclub, but he’s been just as dominant as some of the other closers. He’s only given up runs in 4 appearances (out of 25 total) and only 2 runs or more once leaving him with an ERA/WHIP 1.80/.84. He’s blown a total of 1 save so far and has performed very well so far.

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