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Has Anything Changed? Dan Straily

Kevin Nielsen examines the current status of Oakland A's SP Dan Straily.

Dan Straily, during his dominant start this season against the Astros in which he had 11 strikeouts.
Dan Straily, during his dominant start this season against the Astros in which he had 11 strikeouts.
Bob Levey

For the basics on A’s SP Dan Straily, check out Craig Goldstein’s piece from last August here.

What has his performance been like?

Straily's performance with the A's has looked very good on the surface. He went 2-1 with a 3.89 ERA and 1.32 WHIP in 7 starts last season. In those 39 1/3 innings he struck out 32 and walked 16. His HR/FB rate was a bit inflated, especially for the Coliseum, at 16.7%. This, combined with his 55% fly ball %, led to him giving up 11 HR in those 39 1/3 innings. Straily ended up with a .225 BABIP allowed, which allowed his ERA to stay under 4. His FIP was 6.48 while his xFIP was 5.30 which basically corrected his inflated HR/FB. Although this performance was quite poor under the surface it's not that far off from what we should be able to expect from Straily moving forward when it comes to his ERA/WHIP. This season he made 1 start, albeit against the Astros, which was dominant. He struck out 11 with 0 walks while allowing just 2 earned runs and 5 hits in 6 1/3 IP.

What is his current status?

Dan Straily has been sent to AAA. The A's rotation is full with the return of Bartolo Colon from suspension. Straily should be the first pitcher called up in the event that the A's need a SP. With Colon and Brett Anderson no sure things to stay healthy, and Colon no sure thing to remain effective, there's a pretty good chance we'll see Straily get some time in the majors before the year is done.

What can we expect moving forward?

He's not going to be an ace or a front of the rotation pitcher in all likelihood. What he'll likely end up doing is strike out anywhere between 7-8/9 while posting a better walk rate than the 3.66 BB/9 he had last season in MLB. He has posted K/9 rates over 9 at both AA and AAA so there is some shot for more K's but I wouldn't draft him or pick him up expecting them. With the advantage of pitching half of his games in a pitcher-friendly home ballpark he should be able to end up with a better stat-line than his talent would naturally dictate. The Coliseum is especially friend to fly ball pitchers so Straily should see that HR/FB rate come down quite a bit with an extended stay in the majors. If he ends up making 10 additional starts in the majors this season I'd expect something like a 3.9-4.10 ERA with a 1.30-1.35 WHIP and about 50 K if he pitches 60 innings. That is certainly very useful in AL-Only leagues. In mixed leagues he'll be best used as a spot starter for his favorable matchups and most of his home games.

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Sources: Fangraphs