Fantasy Baseball Bounceback Players – Pitchers

Feb 26, 2009
Here’s a look at some Pitchers who should bounce back this year.

Josh Beckett - Beckett struggled through injuries to a 12-10, 4.03 ERA season in 2008.  The encouraging news is despite not having his typical stuff, he still managed 172 Ks and a 1.19 WHIP.  A healthy Josh Beckett should approach is 2007 numbers.  20 Wins, low 3.00 ERA, and 190 Ks.

Jake Peavy - His numbers (2.85 ERA, 1.18) were outstanding, but he went just 10-11 because he lacked run support.  He was nearly traded to the Cubs, and a deal could still be in the works.  I fully expect him to win at least five or six more games and add about 40 Ks to last year’s 166.
Justin Verlander
- Like most Tigers Verlander had a 2008 to forget.  He went 11-17 with a 4.84 ERA, and a 1.40 WHIP,

John Lackey
- Why do all of these guys’ names start with a J?  Lackey managed just 24 starts last year, but went 12-5.  His ERA was a shade higher than normal at 3.75 (the three previous years it was 3.44, 3.56, and 3.01).  He struck out roughly the same ratio of batters 7.19 K/9 in 2007 & 7.17 in 2008. I see no reason no to expect 17+ Wins, a 3.50 ERA, and 180 Ks.

Scott Kazmir - Finally a non-J.  Kazmir started 27 games last year and went 12-8 with a 3.49 ERA, a 1.27 WHIP, and 166 Ks.  His ERA and WHIP were right in line with his career averages.  Where he should improve is in Wins and Ks.  I’d guess he’ll win a career high 16 games and strike out 200.
Miller Park
Carlos Zambrano
- Zambrano had a nice winning percentage (.700) as he went 14-6, but he struck out just 130 batters.  I don’t see a big change in his WHIP or ERA, but I expect him to win 17+ games and strike out 170 batters. 

Chris Carpenter
- Proceed with caution with Carpenter as he has lost two years to injury.  He was, however, one of the best pitchers in the game from 2004-2006.  If he looks good this Spring, why not take a chance on him?

Photos courtesy of Icon SMI

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4 Responses so far | Have Your Say!

  1. VagabondGuru
    March 2nd, 2009 at 9:14 pm #

    Peavy is an Ace with a healthy arm, very valuable.

    Zambrano is a winner, but less reliable.

    Beckett is HOF when the back is right, but 48-28 with a mid 4 era in Boston. He has been at his best in the crunch, with historic ’03 and ’07 playoffs and THAT is the Red Sox goal with him…they’ve got great depth in the rotation and a lot of guys with tricky health – an adjusted Regular season load might be the ticket for them in late Season, where a HEALTHY Smoltz, Penny and Beckett would be awesome, but from a Fantasy perspective – Josh hasn’t been big Regular Season guy and doesn’t figure to be here.

    Kazmir reminds me of Matusaka and Burnett, live arm but just throws TOO MANY Pitches, leaves a lot of close games in middle inning with huge pitch counts. He’s a little guy with heat and mileage and that often equals arm trouble.

    Lackey is a winner. Carpenter is an absolute mystery.


  2. LestersLegends
    March 2nd, 2009 at 10:51 pm #

    Great summary Matt. Totally agree.

  3. vamos_giantes
    March 2nd, 2009 at 11:45 pm #


  4. LestersLegends
    March 2nd, 2009 at 11:50 pm #

    I’m not quite ready to buy into Zito.

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