Hunter Strickland
Hunter Strickland
30-Year-Old PitcherRP
Seattle Mariners
2019 Fantasy Outlook
An injury to Mark Melancon opened the door for Strickland to break camp as the Giants' closer in 2018. The right-hander was doing just fine in the role until he punched a wall in mid-June following a blown save opportunity, resulting in a broken pinkie finger on his pitching hand which required surgery. Strickland ended up missing 50 games as a result and wasn't quite himself upon his return; he experienced a dip in velocity and struggled to a 6.59 ERA and 8:8 K:BB across 13.2 innings following his activation, never regaining control of the ninth inning. When it was all said and done, he posted a career-worst ERA (3.97), FIP (4.42) and K/9 (7.3), while his BB/9 stayed put at an unsightly 4.2. Strickland was non-tendered by San Francisco, but he should have little trouble finding work in a big-league bullpen. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, $1.3 million contract with the Mariners in January of 2019.
Agrees to deal with Mariners
PSeattle Mariners
January 24, 2019
Strickland agreed to a one-year contract with the Mariners on Thursday, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports.
Strickland is headed north after being non-tendered by the Giants earlier in the offseason. While the deal is technically for one year, Strickland is under control for the next three seasons through arbitration. The reliever is coming off a career-worst season, highlighted by a broken hand he suffered in June after punching a wall. Strickland did rack up 14 saves last season, and his career 2.91 ERA across parts of five big-league seasons could make him the frontrunner to take over as Seattle's closer in 2019.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .264 290 48 35 66 12 3 5
Since 2016vs Right .225 429 104 34 86 14 3 8
2018vs Left .186 98 21 11 16 4 2 2
2018vs Right .307 103 16 10 27 9 0 3
2017vs Left .333 109 16 16 30 5 1 1
2017vs Right .203 159 42 13 29 1 3 3
2016vs Left .270 83 11 8 20 3 0 2
2016vs Right .197 167 46 11 30 4 0 2
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
Since 2016Home 3.41 1.32 94.0 5 6 9 7.5 3.2 0.9
Since 2016Away 2.85 1.32 72.2 5 5 9 9.0 4.3 0.5
2018Home 4.01 1.30 24.2 2 3 7 6.9 3.3 1.5
2018Away 3.92 1.55 20.2 1 2 7 7.8 5.2 0.4
2017Home 2.82 1.38 38.1 3 2 1 7.5 3.5 0.7
2017Away 2.35 1.52 23.0 1 1 0 10.2 5.5 0.4
2016Home 3.66 1.25 32.0 0 1 1 7.9 2.8 0.6
2016Away 2.48 1.00 29.0 3 2 2 9.0 2.8 0.6
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Stat Review
How does Hunter Strickland compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 innings). The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.
94.9 mph
Strand %
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Hunter Strickland
NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
179 days ago
Jan Levine analyzes the top free agents in the National League, including Wilmer Difo, who will take over at second base for the departed Daniel Murphy.
Mound Musings: The AL Bullpen Shuffle
182 days ago
Brad Johnson checks in with unsettled AL bullpen assignments to see where they may be headed including in Los Angeles, where Blake Parker is the closer for now.
NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
186 days ago
Jan Levine highlights Harrison Bader's boost in value and other quality contributors on the late-season NL wire.
Mound Musings: The Bullpen Shuffle – National League
189 days ago
Brad Johnson looks at evolving bullpen assignments in the NL to see where they may be headed. Kenta Maeda could see the majority of saves in Los Angeles until Kenley Jansen returns.
The Long Game: Tomorrow's Closers... Today!
191 days ago
Erik Siegrist looks for potential 2019 save sources in all 30 big-league bullpens, including a peek at what might happen in Boston if Craig Kimbrel leaves as a free agent.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
While Strickland has proven himself to be a quality big-league bullpen arm, he's not any closer to taking over the closer role in San Francisco. Mark Melancon was signed to a lucrative deal last offseason to solidify the ninth inning, and when Melancon went down with an injury in 2017, the Giants brought in Sam Dyson to handle closer duties. Confined to a setup role, Strickland posted strikeout and home-run rates nearly identical to his 2016 marks (8.5 K/9, 0.59 HR/9), but his walk rate exploded, going from 2.8 BB/9 to 4.3. The estimators suggest Strickland overachieved a great deal with a 2.64 ERA, and the team's reluctance to use him to close games speaks volumes. He is averaging nearly 20 holds per year over the past three seasons, but if your league doesn't count holds, Strickland is a tough sell. He's risky as merely a ratios play.
Strickland built off his strong 2015 campaign with another solid season in 2016. While his ERA rose from 2.45 to 3.10, he induced more groundballs (47.3 percent groundball rate) and lowered his home run rate (0.6 HR/9) . He also incorporated his breaking ball more often to keep opposing hitters from sitting on his high-90s fastball. The lone criticism of his performance last season was his inability to take hold of the vacant closer role after Santiago Casilla was demoted in the second half of the season. The Giants went out and signed closer Mark Melancon in free agency, meaning Strickland may not even sniff the closer role again in the foreseeable future barring injury.
Strickland finally put it all together and had a stellar rookie campaign with the Giants in 2015. At 27 years old, he is not your typical rookie arm, battling injury and control issues to finally make it to the majors. Strickland throws straight gas, averaging a tick under 97 mph on his fastball. The knock on him coming into the season was his lack of secondary pitches, which made him too predictable and susceptible to the longball (he gave up six home runs in eight postseason appearances in 2014). He appears to have fixed that flaw in his game, mixing in a breaking ball 24.2% of the time in 2015, which led to a modest 0.70 HR/9 allowed. With his overpowering fastball and improved control, Strickland has been labeled the Giants' closer of the future by some. While that opportunity may not come in 2016, he looks to have locked up a late-inning role in San Francisco's bullpen.
The Giants trusted Strickland to handle critical spots in their bullpen during the playoffs, and he was tagged for a handful of key home runs while serving up six long balls in just 8.1 October innings. His story is one of perseverance, as Strickland has overcome shoulder and elbow injuries in his development to reach the big leagues for the first time just before turning 26 in September. Of course, his performance will largely be forgotten as the organization brought home a World Series title for the third time in five seasons anyway, but it will be interesting to see how he rebounds in 2015. Working with a high-90s fastball and slider, Strickland has the tools to be a dominant late-inning reliever, but he'll need to command his offerings more effectively to fully realize his potential.
More Fantasy News
Heads to free agency
PFree Agent
November 30, 2018
Strickland wasn't tendered a contract by the Giants for the 2019 season, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports.
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Nabs one-out save
PSan Francisco Giants
August 28, 2018
Strickland walked a batter before recording the final out of Monday's 2-0 win over Arizona, picking up his 14th save in the process.
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Activated from 60-day DL
PSan Francisco Giants
August 18, 2018
The Giants activated Strickland (finger) from the 60-day disabled list Saturday, Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic Bay Area reports.
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Will be setup man upon return
PSan Francisco Giants
August 17, 2018
Strickland (finger) will be a setup man when he returns from the disabled list, Kerry Crowley of The San Jose Mercury News reports.
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Slated to pitch consecutive days
PSan Francisco Giants
August 15, 2018
Strickland (finger) is scheduled to pitch for Triple-A Sacramento on Wednesday after striking out two in a scoreless inning for the River Cats on Tuesday, Kerry Crowley of The San Jose Mercury News reports.
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