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April 12, 2014 posted by Matthew Dewoskin

2014 Fantasy Baseball Pitching Crystal Balls: Week 3 Edition

2014 Fantasy Baseball Pitching Crystal Balls: Week 3 Edition
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Another week of baseball and another week of searching for tasty match ups to exploit. It’s also another week to try to avoid landmines. Roaching your ratios in April isn’t a winning strategy. Playing it safe in April could mean that you’re still in contention for a league title in September.

Pitchers to Target

Brandon Morrow gets two starts next week. He’ll start with a matchup on the road at Minnesota and end the week at Toronto. Morrow would usually be a risky pick, but his velocity has returned and he’s thrown the ball a lot better than his results would indicate. He’s averaging over 94 mph on his fastball and his peripherals make his 5.73 ERA look like a mirage. That number will come down and there’s a very good chance it could be down by next weekend. He’s also owned in less than 5% of ESPN leagues. Now, 95% of ESPN leagues were abandoned the day after they were drafted, but he deserves to be on a roster yesterday.

Robbie Erlin gets two starts at home for the Padres next week. That’s two starts (2) at home (Petco) for the Padres. If ever there was a week to have Erlin on your roster, this is it. Erlin has been awesome in Petco in his short career. He doesn’t walk very many and he’s shown capable of striking out a batter or two. He’s not a good bet to earn wins, but he’ll help your ratios and he won’t hurt your strikeout totals. He gets to go twice at home, that’s a pitcher fantasy GMs should want to pick up, even if it is only for a week.

There aren’t a lot of options to stream this week, but Nathan Eovaldi gets the Mariners at home. It’s not an ideal matchup, but he gets to face an AL team without their DH in a pitcher’s park. Eovaldi has turned his massive skillset into results in his first two starts in 2014. He walked exactly one batter in 13 innings so far and his stuff is as awesome it’s ever been. He only gets one start, but it’s shaping up to be a start that fantasy GMs will be interested in.

Pitchers to Stay Away From

Shelby Miller gets two starts next week. The problem is that both starts will come on the road. He gets Milwaukee first and ends the week at Washington. Miller’s road ERA for his career sits at a robust 4.71. He’s also looked really mediocre in his first two starts. His 2014 K:BB sits at 1.17 and he’s already given up four homers this year. This is shaping up to be a rough week for fantasy GMs with Miller on their roster. It might be a good idea to leave Miller on the bench and roll with Robbie Erlin.

Somehow Jake Peavy is 100% owned in ESPN leagues. That means that a lot of fantasy GMs will be rolling with Peavy at the Chicago White Sox and at home against the Baltimore Orioles. Both of those teams have shown that they’re capable of putting up a lot of runs in fairly short order. Peavy might nick a win or two if the Red Sox are able to mash next week, but he could do serious damage to your ratios. Stay away from Jake Peavy this week, your WHIP and ERA will thank you for it.

Jered Weaver only gets one start next week and its on the road at Detroit. Bad matchup. He’s struggled on the road historically (3.78 ERA for his career) and he’s already given up four homers on the season. The Tigers have a lot of hitters capable of putting the baseball out of the ballpark and this is a match up that fantasy GMs with Weaver on their roster should want no part of.

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