Two-Start Pitchers: Week 14 (June 30-July 6)

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Ranking and tiering the two-start pitchers for Week 14, including Danny Duffy, Collin McHugh and Jesse Hahn.

Week 13's recommendations didn't turn up any no-hitters, but two of my three picks earned wins in their first starts of the week. Bartolo Colon outdueled Scott Kazmir and dominated his former mates, holding the high-powered Athletics offense to one run on four hits and striking out eight over eight innings. Drew Smyly stepped up similarly for the Tigers, earning the victory and allowing no runs and striking out five in six innings. Unfortunately, my third suggestion, Wei-Yin Chen, wasn't up to the task, allowing eight runs in nine combined innings against the White Sox and Rays. Colon and Smyly are both on the schedule today.

Results (through 1/2 of Week 13)

30-17
7.06 K/9
2.39 BB/9
3.32 ERA
1.11 WHIP

Start!

David Price: Tue-@NYY (Kuroda), Sun-@DET (Porcello)
Jordan Zimmermann: Mon-COL (Flande), Sun-CHC (Arrieta)
Corey Kluber: Mon-@LAD (Haren), Sun-KC (Duffy)
Anibal Sanchez: Mon-OAK (Kazmir), Sat-TB (Archer)

Tier 1

Garrett Richards: Mon-@CWS (Noesi), Sat-HOU (McHugh)
Mat Latos: Mon-@SD (Hahn), Sun-MIL (Gallardo)
Scott Kazmir: Mon-@DET (Sanchez), Sat-TOR (Buehrle)
A.J. Burnett: Tue-@MIA (Alvarez), Sun-@PIT (Locke)
Jered Weaver: Tue-@CWS (Carroll), Sun-HOU (Cosart)
Alex Wood: Mon-NYM (Wheeler), Sun-ARI (Miley)
Tim Lincecum: Tue-STL (Gonzales), Sun-@SD (Hahn)
Jake Arrieta: Mon-@BOS (Peavy), Sun-@WSH (Zimmermann)
Henderson Alvarez: Tue-PHI (Burnett), Sun-@STL (Gonzales)

Tier 2

Danny Duffy: Mon-@MIN (Deduno), Sun-@CLE (Kluber)
Chris Archer: Mon-@NYY (Phelps), Sat-@DET (Sanchez)
Collin McHugh: Mon-SEA (Walker), Sat-@LAA (Richards)
Rick Porcello: Tue-OAK (Mills), Sun-TB (Price)
Zack Wheeler: Mon-@ATL (Wood), Sun-TEX (Martinez)
Jesse Hahn: Mon-CIN (Latos), Sun-SF (Lincecum)
Jeff Locke: Tue-ARI (Miley), Sun-PHI (Burnett)
Josh Beckett: Tue-CLE (Masterson), Sun-@COL (Friedrich)
Hiroki Kuroda: Tue-TB (Price), Sun-@MIN (Nolasco)
Taijuan Walker: Mon-@HOU (McHugh), Sun-@CWS (Noesi)

Tier 3

David Phelps: Mon-TB (Archer), Sat-@MIN (Deduno)
Wade Miley: Tue-@PIT (Locke), Sun-@ATL (Wood)
Jarred Cosart: Tue-SEA (Iwakuma), Sun-@LAA (Weaver)
Jake Peavy: Mon-CHC (Arrieta), Sun-BAL (Jimenez)
Drew Hutchison: Tue-MIL (Estrada), Sun-@OAK (Mills)
Ubaldo Jimenez: Mon-TEX (Saunders), Sun-@BOS (Peavy)
Marco Gonzales: Tue-@SF (Lincecum), Sun-MIA (Alvarez)

Not this week

Samuel Deduno: Mon-KC (Duffy), Sat-NYY (Phelps)
Yohan Flande: Mon-@WSH (Zimmermann), Sat-LAD (Haren)
Christian Friedrich: Tue-@WSH (Strasburg), Sun-LAD (Beckett)
Dan Haren: Mon-CLE (Kluber), Sat-@COL (Flande)
Brad Mills: Tue-@DET (Porcello), Sun-TOR (Hutchison)
Nick Martinez: Tue-@BAL (TBD), Sun-@NYM (Wheeler)
Hector Noesi: Mon-LAA (Richards), Sun-SEA (Walker)
Ricky Nolasco: Tue-KC (Shields), Sun-NYY (Kuroda)
Joe Saunders: Mon-@BAL (Jimenez), Sat-@NYM (Colon)

My Week 14 Picks

Danny Duffy, Royals
2014: 4-7, 67 IP, 6.99 K/9, 3.63 BB/9, 34.4 GB%, 2.69 ERA, 1.07 WHIP

Through 10 starts in the rotation, Duffy has been a tough-luck loser with six "Ls," but he's been fantastic in 58 2/3 innings of work, posting a 2.76 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 41 strikeouts. And, over his last five turns, the 26-year-old southpaw is 2-2 with a 1.71 ERA, 0.88 WHIP and 7.96 K/9. Duffy has settled nicely into the Royals rotation, but he'll need to show better control to keep it going. In total, he's walked 27 batters in 67 innings, which could be especially damaging for a fly-ball pitcher. The left-hander gets a pair of road starts against the Twins and Indians in Week 14, with the latter being the more concerning of the two matchups. The Twins aren't a power-heavy team and Duffy's game should play just fine in Target Field, but the Indians could turn walks into multi-run disasters in Progressive Field. Cleveland rosters a lefty-heavy lineup, however, and Duffy has held lefties to .095/.159/.098 slash (that's not a misprint), so there's reason for optimism.

Collin McHugh, Astros
2014: 4-6, 72.1 IP, 10.08 K/9, 3.36 BB/9, 40.0 GB%, 2.86 ERA, 1.05 WHIP

With Dallas Keuchel day-to-day with a hand injury, McHugh is the default Houston ace (sorry, Scott Feldman). The right-hander has been solid all season despite living on the wild side (13 walks over his last 22 1/3 innings). McHugh, 27, owns an impressive 27.5 percent strikeout rate and 18.3 percent K-BB%, which would be the 16th best mark in baseball if he qualified. I expect McHugh to have his way with the Mariners, who are one of the least patient teams in terms of walk rate (27th, 6.6 percent). The Angels should be a tougher test, but he's pitched well against the Halos in two turns already, going 1-1 and allowing two runs in 12 innings (1.50 ERA) with 11 strikeouts.

Jesse Hahn, Padres
2014: 3-1, 10.72 K/9, 3.18 BB/9, 52.7 GB%, 2.38 ERA, 1.06 WHIP

Hahn is a groundball pitcher playing half of his games in Petco. That's always a good start when on the lookout for potential streamers. I admit I didn't know much about Hahn before San Diego gave the 24-year-old right-hander the call from Double-A San Antonio. He's already picked up three wins in four turns, recording an impressive 27 strikeouts in 22 2/3 innings. I don't see Hahn posting 10 K/9 going forward, but he could give you somewhere close to eight. The rookie gets a pair of home starts against the Reds and Giants in Week 14, so he's a must-start among the widely available two-starters. Hahn pitched very well against San Francisco in his last start, picking up the win while allowing two runs on four hits and one walk and striking out eight in six innings.

Stats from FanGraphs.

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