Money Pitchers in MLB
1. Clay Buchholz (Red Sox) – A year ago Buchholz was part of the problem but this year he is the solution. Back issues prevented Buchholz from finishing pitches and getting ahead in the counts. But this year he looks as healthy as a horse and he’s pitching as well as anyone in the major leagues. If you’ve backed the Red Sox when Buchholz has taken the hill then you are a perfect 4-0 (+4.10 units) as the 28-year-old has cruised with a dazzling 0.90 ERA and a WHIP at 1.00.
2. Matt Moore (Rays) – The young southpaw issued six walks against Texas in his second start but that’s about the worst thing you can say about his stellar early season performance. He is 4-0 (+4.10 units) with a 1.04 ERA and a 0.92 WHIP. Did I mention he’s only 23-years old?
3. Yu Darvish (Rangers) – Darvish is clicking on all cylinders and has a potent lineup to back him up. Darvish is blitzing opposition batters with a 98-mph fastball complemented by a slow, looping curve and a nasty slider. He is currently 4-1 (+2.55 units) with a 1.65 ERA and a 0.80 WHIP. The biggest issue backing Darvish is the lumber you will have to lay.
4. Jon Lester (Red Sox) – The Sox ace has been back to his old nasty self this season with a 4-0 record (+5.15 units if you count his no decision that resulted in a Boston win), a 2.27 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP. Welcome back Jon.
5. Justin Masterson (Indians) – Masterson just might be the best guy to tail because he plays for the Indians, thereby avoiding much of the lumber you will have to lay with the aforementioned pitchers. Masterson is 4-1 (+4.15 units) and scored his backers two consecutive bombs at +165 and +180 against Toronto and Tampa respectively.
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1. Matt Harvey (Mets) – You can split hairs and argue that Harvey may not be worthy of the top spot as his 1.59 ERA is still half a click higher than Atlanta’s Paul Maholm but this kid is 24-years-old and a burgeoning ace with a world of upside. He is currently 4-0 (+5.05 units if you count his no decision which resulted in a Mets victory) with a micro WHIP of 0.62. The kid is the goods.
2. Paul Maholm (Braves) – I’m not sure what Maholm drank in the offseason but give me some ‘o dat! The big lefty is 3-1 (+2.00 units) and has a league leading 1.03 ERA and a 0.87 WHIP. I’m not sure I would hitch my wagon to this rising star because he has never produced these sterling numbers over the course of an entire season but you can’t argue with his performance thus far.
3. Adam Wainwright (Cardinals) – Wainwright’s control has been mind boggling this season. He became the first pitcher since 1900 to record 28 K’s and no walks in his first four starts. He is 4-1 (+3.15 units), 1.93 ERA and a 0.99 WHIP. He’s the guy to tail.
4. Madison Bumgarner (Giants) – I can think of worse pitchers to tail when you’ve got a 3-0 (+2.45 units including two no decisions) record, a 1.87 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP. He’s got a World Champion ball club backing him and is off to a tremendous start for the 5-year veteran who is still only 23-years-old.
5. Jordan Zimmermann (Nationals) – Let’s not overlook Jordan Zimmermann. He is 3-1 (+1.70 units) and has an ERA of 2.67 with a 1.07 WHIP. But he’s the guy on a stacked Nats pitching staff that may get overlooked which is good news if you don’t want to lay the heavy juice to get a big-time pitcher.