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Pitching Value Meter: Welcome Back

David Regan

David Regan

David Regan is a five-time Fantasy Sports Writers Association award winner, and was named the 2010 Fantasy Baseball Writer of the Year.

Quick hits for the week:

Strasburg is back ... details below.

Yankees rotation in flux. Does A.J. Burnett get another start after holding Boston in check? I say six-man rotation this week.

A $1.2 billion pricetag for the Dodgers? That makes the Yankees worth what, $5 billion? How unlikely is it that Bug Selig allows Chinese money to buy into one of baseball's all-time historic franchises? Not likely at all. Still exciting for Dodgers fans to contemplate the demise of Frank McCourt.

Baseball's top five rotations as measured by rotation ERA: Philadelphia, San Francisco, LA Dodgers, Tampa Bay, Atlanta - Incredible to see the Rays in there given their collective youth and AL East-ness. Plus, they have Matt Moore on the way.

Craig Kimbrel and Jonny Venters is an elite bullpen duo? Best ever? It's up there, but check out 2003, a year in which Eric Gagne won the NL Cy Young and Guillermo Mota had a sub-2.00 ERA over 105 innings. The 1992 A's are another with Dennis Eckersley and Gene Nelson. Any others come to mind off the top of your heads?

Email: vtadave@yahoo.com - I respond to these much quicker than tweets or the comments section.

Twitter: @vtadave

For the week Sept. 5-11

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Start 'Em

1. Stephen Strasburg - LAD, HOU (No. 1? I'm probably nuts, but hey, it's my column)
2. Cliff Lee - ATL, @MIL
3. Clayton Kershaw - @SF
4. Roy Halladay - @MIL
5. Vance Worley - ATL, @MIL
6. Yovani Gallardo - @STL, PHI
7. Javier Vazquez - NYM, @PIT
8. Madison Bumgarner - @SD, LAD
9. Cole Hamels - @MIL
10. Tim Lincecum - LAD
11. Ian Kennedy - SD
12. Hiroki Kuroda - @WAS, @SF
13. Johnny Cueto - @CHC
14. Dan Hudson - SD
15. Roy Oswalt - ATL
16. Matt Garza - CIN, @NYM
17. Matt Cain - @SD
18. Zack Greinke - @STL
19. Brandon Beachy - @PHI
20. Tim Hudson - @PHI, @STL
21. Chris Carpenter - MIL
22. Josh Collmenter - @COL, SD
23. Shaun Marcum - PHI
24. John Lannan - LAD, HOU
25. Randy Wolf - @STL, PHI
26. Cory Luebke - @ARI
27. Chad Billingsley - @WAS
28. Chris Capuano - @FLA, CHC
29. R.A. Dickey - @FLA
30. Wandy Rodriguez - @WAS
31. Ted Lilly - @WAS, @SF
32. Mat Latos - @ARI
33. Bud Norris - @WAS
34. Mike Minor - @NYM
35. James McDonald - HOU, FLA
36. Ryan Vogelsong - LAD
37. Derek Lowe - @PHI, @STL
38. Ricky Nolasco - @PIT
39. Edwin Jackson - ATL
40. Ryan Dempster - CIN
41. Anibal Sanchez - @PIT
42. Mike Leake - @CHC
43. Jhoulys Chacin - CIN (check status)
44. Ross Detwiler - LAD
45. Eric Surkamp - @SD

Borderline Depending on League Format

46. Henry Sosa - @PIT, @WAS
47. Aaron Harang - SF
48. Wade Miley - @COL, SD
49. Tim Milone - HOU
50. Brad Lincoln - HOU
51. Brett Myers - @PIT
52. Randall Delgado - @STL
53. Esmil Rogers - ARI
54. Dana Eveland - @WAS (tentative - Nathan Eovaldi also possible)
55. Julio Teheran - @NYM (capable of a gem but not quite ready)
56. Mike Pelfrey - CHC
57. Randy Wells - @NYM
58. Homer Bailey - @COL
59. Jeff Karstens - HOU
60. Bronson Arroyo - @COL
61. Dontrelle Willis - @CHC, @COL
62. Kevin Millwood - ARI
63. Ross Ohlendorf - FLA
64. Jake Westbrook - MIL, ATL
65. Joe Saunders - @COL
66. J.A. Happ - @PIT

Extreme Caution Advised

67. Chris Narveson - PHI
68. Rodrigo Lopez - CIN
69. Jaime Garcia - ATL
70. Chien-Ming Wang - LAD
71. Charlie Morton - FLA
72. Miguel Batista - @FLA, CHC
73. Wade LeBlanc - SF, @ARI
74. Dillon Gee - ATL
75. Clay Hensley - NYM
76. Brad Hand - NYM
77. Undecided Mets sp - ATL
78. Casey Coleman - @NYM
79. Jason Hammel - ARI
80. Kyle Lohse - MIL
81. Alex White - CIN
82. Aaron Cook - CIN
83. Tim Stauffer - SF, @ARI

Notes:
Set your DVRs or just get off work early on Tuesday, as Stephen Strasburg is back. He'll face the Dodgers in Washington. Strasburg hurled six one-hit innings Thursday and finished his rehab stint with a 29:3 K:BB and .184 average-against in 20.1 innings. ... Julio Teheran and Randall Delgado will both get starts this week due to Thursday's doubleheader and injuries to Tommy Hanson (shoulder) and Jair Jurrjens (knee). Delgado has had more big-league success so far, but the sample size is small, and Teheran's talent is high. ... No clue what the Nationals are going to do with their rotation this week. Tom Milone has replaced Jordan Zimmermann (innings limit reached), and with Strasburg's return, they could choose to go with a six-man rotation. That would leave Strasburg with one start instead of two, but would push that second start from a home start to one on the road. Marketing says Strasburg gets two this week, but unless Livan Hernandez is dropped from the rotation, I'm not sure who else goes. OK, scratch that. Livan won't start again this season after Sunday (9/4). ... Dana Eveland's impressive eight innings was a shocker, and it should keep him in the rotation over Nathan Eovaldi this week. Eveland could be a solid NL-only play against Washington, but don't be surprised if he doesn't make it out of the fourth inning. ... Over the last 30 days, Chien-Ming Wang has a 1.8 K/9. That's a bit low. ... Over that same period, Brandon Beachy has an 11.5 mark, best in baseball among starting pitchers. ... xFIP and WAR both give a slight edge to Roy Halladay over Clayton Kershaw in the NL Cy Young race, but really this one is too close to call. ... Tom Milone makes his big league debut Saturday, Sept. 3. All Milone has done the past two years in the minors is post a 310:39 K:BB in 306.1 innings. He doesn't have a ton of velocity, but as Milone's RotoWire player note points out, neither does Shaun Marcum.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Start 'Em

1. Josh Beckett - @TOR, @TB
2. CC Sabathia - BAL, @LAA
3. Justin Verlander - @CLE
4. Felix Hernandez - @LAA
5. James Shields - TEX, BOS
6. Dan Haren - SEA
7. Jered Weaver - NYY
8. Jon Lester - @TOR
9. David Price - TEX
10. Ervin Santana - SEA
11. Gio Gonzalez - KC
12. C.J. Wilson - @TB
13. Ricky Romero - BOS
14. John Danks - @MIN
15. Doug Fister - @CLE, MIN
16. Gavin Floyd - CLE
17. Rich Harden - KC, @TEX
18. Mark Buehrle - CLE
19. Justin Masterson - DET
20. Ubaldo Jimenez - DET, @CHW (you have to use him, as he could have two gems this week)
21. Brandon McCarthy - @TEX
22. Michael Pineda - KC
23. Colby Lewis - OAK
24. Max Scherzer - MIN
25. Fausto Carmona - DET, @CHW
26. Ivan Nova - @BAL
27. Derek Holland - @TB
28. Bruce Chen - @OAK
29. Jeremy Guthrie - @TOR
30. Erik Bedard - @TB
31. Brett Cecil - BAL
32. Henderson Alvarez - BOS, BAL
33. Jerome Williams - SEA, NYY
34. Jeremy Hellickson - BOS
35. Jeff Niemann - TEX

Borderline Depending on League Format

36. Luke Hochevar - @SEA
37. Jake Peavy - @MIN
38. Andrew Miller - @TOR (probable to make this start - six-man rotation?)
39. Freddy Garcia - @LAA
40. Rick Porcello - @CLE
41. Trevor Cahill - @TEX
42. Alfredo Simon - NYY
43. Wade Davis - BOS
44. Guillermo Moscoso - KC
45. Brad Penny - MIN
46. David Huff - @CHW
47. Jason Vargas - KC
48. Felipe Paulino - @OAK, @SEA (tentative for both starts)
49. Alexi Ogando - @TB, OAK (wilting in the heat?)
50. Danny Duffy - @OAK, (last start of the season it appears)
51. Luis Perez - BOS, BAL
52. Jeff Francis - @SEA (final pitch in last start just now crossed the plate)
53. Carl Pavano - CHW
54. Bartolo Colon - @LAA (oh well, it was a good story for awhile)
55. Kevin Slowey - @DET
56. Matt Harrison - OAK (love the matchup and the early-season results, but not so good lately)
57. Brandon Morrow - BOS (love the K's, but ...)

Extreme caution advised

58. Blake Beavan - KC
59. Jeanmar Gomez - @CHW
60. Brian Duensing - CHW
61. Philip Humber - @MIN, CLE (see Colon comment)
62. Zach Britton - @NYY
63. Tommy Hunter - @NYY, @TOR (really? Tommy Hunter?)
64. Phil Hughes - BAL
65. Anthony Swarzak - CHW, @DET
66. Joel Pineiro - NYY
67. Nathan Adcock - @SEA (tentative)
68. Charlie Furbush - @LAA
69. Zach Stewart - @MIN
70. Scott Diamond - CHW, @DET
71. John Lackey - @TB
72. Tim Wakefield - @TOR
73. Jo-Jo Reyes - @NYY, @TOR
74. A.J. Burnett - BAL
75. Anthony Vasquez - @LAA, KC

Notes: Matt Harrison
was going so well earlier this year, but with a 4.56 ERA since the break, Scott Feldman was given a spot start. Harrison, though, hasn't quite lost his rotation slot. ... Jacob Turner's second MLB start didn't quite go as well as his first, as Turner surrendered six runs in 4.1 innings against the Royals. Don't expect a third start until 2012... A.J. Burnett might have done just enough against Boston (5.1 innings, two runs) on Thursday to save his rotation spot. He's listed as Wednesday's starter, but there could be some movement in the Yankees rotation this week. ... C.J. Wilson was excellent again Thursday, but excellent enough to net a $100 million free-agent deal? That just seems ridiculous. What would Clayton Kershaw be worth if he's allowed to hit free agency at age 26? ... I left Brian Matusz out of the Baltimore rotation this week as he's been brutal lately. With his disappointing season combined with that of Chris Tillman, it's time for a coaching change there in Baltimore. ... It appears the Red Sox will roll with six starters, but only Jon Lester and Josh Beckett should be locks to make their scheduled turn consistently. ... It appears Dustin McGowan could return to the big leagues this month after last appearing in a major league game in 2008. McGowan was reportedly hitting as high as 97 mph on the gun in his rehab outings and could be a decent AL-only flier/keeper option if his arm holds up. ... Jered Weaver has his recent start pushed back a day, so I'll just assume the rest of the rotation is pushed back as well. This should give Jerome Williams two starts this week. ...For now, the Mariners have Anthony Vasquez listed as Monday's starter, but after an 11.57 ERA in his first two starts, that could change. I'm assuming a six-man rotation this week, but again - in flux. ... CC Sabathia has a 5.24 ERA over his last five starts, but blame a bloated 26.7-percent HR/FB rate and a .396 BABIP. He's obviously an every week starter in all formats. ... It's not a coincidence that Jered Weaver and his third-lowest-in-baseball 33.2 GB% has had success considering the Angles have one of the better outfield defenses in the game. It's just one more piece of data to factor in when evaluating pitching.

MIXED LEAGUE TOP 100

1. Josh Beckett - @TOR, @TB
2. CC Sabathia - BAL, @LAA
3. Stephen Strasburg - LAD, HOU
4. Cliff Lee - ATL, @MIL
5. Justin Verlander - @CLE
6. Clayton Kershaw - @SF
7. Roy Halladay - @MIL
8. Felix Hernandez - @LAA
9. James Shields - TEX, BOS
10. Dan Haren - SEA
11. Vance Worley - ATL, @MIL
12. Jered Weaver - NYY
13. Yovani Gallardo - @STL, PHI
14. Javier Vazquez - NYM, @PIT
15. Madison Bumgarner - @SD, LAD
16. Cole Hamels - @MIL
17. Jon Lester - @TOR
18. Tim Lincecum - LAD
19. David Price - TEX
20. Ian Kennedy - SD
21. Hiroki Kuroda - @WAS, @SF
22. Johnny Cueto - @CHC
23. Ervin Santana - SEA
24. Dan Hudson - SD
25. Gio Gonzalez - KC
26. Roy Oswalt - ATL
27. Matt Garza - CIN, @NYM
28. C.J. Wilson - @TB
29. Matt Cain - @SD
30. Zack Greinke - @STL
31. Ricky Romero - BOS
32. Brandon Beachy - @PHI
33. Tim Hudson - @PHI, @STL
34. John Danks - @MIN
35. Doug Fister - @CLE, MIN
36. Chris Carpenter - MIL
37. Gavin Floyd - CLE
38. Rich Harden - KC, @TEX
39. Mark Buehrle - CLE
40. Justin Masterson - DET
41. Ubaldo Jimenez - DET, @CHW (you have to use him, as he could have two gems this week)
42. Josh Collmenter - @COL, SD
43. Shaun Marcum - PHI
44. John Lannan - LAD, HOU
45. Randy Wolf - @STL, PHI
46. Cory Luebke - @ARI
47. Brandon McCarthy - @TEX
48. Chad Billingsley - @WAS
49. Chris Capuano - @FLA, CHC
50. Michael Pineda - KC
51. R.A. Dickey - @FLA
52. Wandy Rodriguez - @WAS
53. Ted Lilly - @WAS, @SF
54. Mat Latos - @ARI
55. Bud Norris - @WAS
56. Mike Minor - @NYM
57. James McDonald - HOU, FLA
58. Colby Lewis - OAK
59. Ryan Vogelsong - LAD
60. Derek Lowe - @PHI, @STL
61. Max Scherzer - MIN
62. Ricky Nolasco - @PIT
63. Edwin Jackson - ATL
64. Fausto Carmona - DET, @CHW
65. Ivan Nova - @BAL
66. Derek Holland - @TB
67. Ryan Dempster - CIN
68. Bruce Chen - @OAK
69. Jeremy Guthrie - @TOR
70. Erik Bedard - @TB
71. Brett Cecil - BAL
72. Henderson Alvarez - BOS, BAL
73. Jerome Williams - SEA, NYY
74. Jeremy Hellickson - BOS
75. Anibal Sanchez - @PIT
76. Jeff Niemann - TEX
77. Mike Leake - @CHC
78. Jhoulys Chacin - ARI, CIN
79. Ross Detwiler - LAD
80. Eric Surkamp - @SD
81. Henry Sosa - @PIT, @WAS
82. Aaron Harang - SF
83. Wade Miley - @COL, SD
84. Tim Milone - HOU
85. Luke Hochevar - @SEA
86. Jake Peavy - @MIN
87. Andrew Miller - @TOR (probable to make this start - six-man rotation?)
88. Freddy Garcia - @LAA
89. Rick Porcello - @CLE
90. Brad Lincoln - HOU
91. Trevor Cahill - @TEX
92. Alfredo Simon - NYY
93. Brett Myers - @PIT
94. Randall Delgado - @STL
95. Wade Davis - BOS
96. Esmil Rogers - ARI
97. Dana Eveland - @WAS (tentative - Nathan Eovaldi also possible)
98. Julio Teheran - @NYM (capable of a gem but not quite ready)
99. Mike Pelfrey - CHC
100. Guillermo Moscoso - KC

Regan, a four-time Fantasy Sports Writers Association award winner, was named the 2010 Fantasy Baseball Writer of the Year.

Follow @vtadave on Twitter.