Fantasy owners should be salivating if Kluber is still available in your league (USAT)
Corey Kluber is a former fourth round pick with a career 4.42 ERA and 1.41 WHIP in the minor leagues. He posted a 5.14 ERA and 1.49 WHIP as a rookie with Cleveland last season, although that did come with a 54:18 K:BB ratio over 63.0 innings. In 2013, he’s quietly become interesting. Over his last five starts (not including one in which he lasted just two innings thanks to a rain delay), Kluber has a 2.31 ERA and 1.03 WHIP with a 32:5 K:BB ratio over 35.0 innings. While Kluber’s last start came at home against a struggling Nationals team, the other four included @Tex, @NYY, @Bos and at home against Detroit, making the stretch all the more impressive. He has a lack of pedigree and is 27 years old, but if you ignore the small sample, here’s a pitcher with a 24.6 K% and 4.6 BB% paired with an 11.0 SwStr%. In other words, those are the peripherals of a star. Seriously, take a look at the company of pitchers who are strong in these areas, and see just how favorably Kluber stacks up. (Also notice how legit Hisashi Iwakuma has been). And that’s not even factoring in his accompanying 1.45 GB/FB ratio (and his 9.1 IFFB%). Kluber’s fastball has seen an increase in velocity the last couple of years, and he now relies on a cutter more so than in the past. Systems can’t agree if his breaking pitch is a curveball or slider, but it’s been a terrific offering no matter how it’s classified. He’s held left-handers to just a .235/.286/.374 line this season, and it’s probably safe to expect his .365 BABIP versus righties to drop moving forward. I for one certainly didn’t see this coming, and again, it’s been a small sample, but Kluber is currently owned in just 20% of Yahoo leagues. Given the aforementioned peripherals, that number should be closer to 100%.
Here’s Cuban prospect Alfredo Despaigne taking home run watching to the next level. (H/T Grant Brisbee and Carson Cistulli)
Here’s Bob Costas’ curious take on the decline of Western civilization.Read More »from Mostly MLB Notes: Hyping Corey Kluber, loving Giancarlo Stanton and offering an apology