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Two-Start Pitchers: Week 12 (June 22-28)

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Ranking and tiering the two-start pitchers in Week 12, including Tommy Milone, C.C. Sabathia and Jon Niese.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

I watched the Blackhawks in one of those cheesy wing restaurants on Monday and everything was gravy until I saw Carlos Rodon, one of my Week 11 tw0-start picks, giving it up to the Pirates on the one television not dedicated to hockey - Rodon had his worst start of the year, allowing seven runs in 3 2/3 innings. He did come back against the Rangers, earning a quality start despite a so-so performance (6IP, 4H, 2ER, 3BB, 5K). In other two-start streamer news... Jesse Hahn was the man, earning two quality starts and two wins against the Padres and Angels. That's the first time in a long time getting two quality starts and two wins from the same pitcher (pats self on the back). Charlie Morton can do the same if he solves the Nationals today. Morton pitched seven scoreless against the White Sox in start No. 1. The week pushed my ERA under 5... quite the accomplishment.

My results so far

15-29 (60 starts, 27 quality starts)
4.97 ERA
6.80 K/9
2.45 BB/9
1.34 WHIP

Start!

Clayton Kershaw: Mon-@CHC (Wada), Sat-@MIA (Phelps)
Felix Hernandez: Mon-KC (Blanton), Sun-@LAA (Santiago)
Madison Bumgarner: Tue-SD (Despaigne), Sun-COL (Kendrick)
David Price: Tue-@CLE (Salazar), Sun-CWS (Samardzija)
Johnny Cueto: Tue-@PIT (Locke), Sun-@NYM (Niese)
Zack Greinke: Tue-@CHC (Hammel), Sun-@MIA (Urena)

Tier 1

Carlos Martinez: Tue-@MIA (Urena), Sun-CHC (Hammel)
Jason Hammel: Tue-LAD (Greinke), Sun-@STL (Martinez)
Alex Wood: Tue-@WSH (Strasburg), Sun-@PIT (Locke)
Michael Pineda: Mon-PHI (Correia), Sat-@HOU (Oberholtzer)
Hector Santiago: Mon-HOU (Oberholtzer), Sun-SEA (Hernandez)
Jesse Chavez: Tue-@TEX (Gonzalez), Sun-KC (Blanton)

Tier 2

Trevor Bauer: Mon-DET (Ryan), Sun-@BAL (Jimenez)
Stephen Strasburg: Tue-ATL (Wood), Sun-@PHI (Correia)
Jeff Samardzija: Tue-@MIN (Pelfrey), Sun-@DET (Price)
Ubaldo Jimenez: Tue-@BOS (Kelly), Sun-CLE (Bauer)
CC Sabathia: Tue-PHI (O'Sullivan), Sun-@HOU (McHugh)
Chase Anderson: Tue-@COL (Kendrick), Sun-@SD (Despaigne)
Chi Chi Gonzalez: Tue-OAK (Chavez), Sun-@TOR (Hutchison)
Drew Hutchison: Mon-@TB (Andriese), Sun-TEX (Gonzalez)
Mike Fiers: Tue-NYM (Niese), Sun-MIN (Milone)

Tier 3

Collin McHugh: Tue-@LAA (Wilson), Sun-NYY (Sabathia)
Jonathon Niese: Tue-@MIL (Fiers), Sun-CIN (Cueto)
Tommy Milone: Mon-CWS (Danks), Sun-@MIL (Fiers)
Odrisamer Despaigne: Tue-@SF (Bumgarner), Sun-ARI (Anderson)
Matt Andriese: Mon-TOR (Hutchison), Sun-BOS (Kelly)
Tsuyoshi Wada: Mon-LAD (Kershaw), Sat-@STL (Wacha)
Jeff Locke: Tue-CIN (Cueto), Sun-ATL (Wood)
Brett Oberholtzer: Mon-@LAA (Santiago), Sat-NYY (Pineda)

Not this week

Joe Blanton: Mon-@SEA (Hernandez), Sun-@OAK (Chavez)
Kevin Correia: Mon-@NYY (Pineda), Sun-WSH (Strasburg)
John Danks: Mon-@MIN (Milone), Sat-@DET (Ryan)
Joe Kelly: Tue-BAL (Jimenez), Sun-@TB (Andriese)
Kyle Kendrick: Tue-ARI (Anderson), Sun-@SF (Bumgarner)
Kyle Ryan: Mon-@CLE (Bauer), Sat-CWS (Danks)
Jose Urena: Tue-STL (Martinez), Sun-LAD (Greinke)

My Week 12 Picks

Tommy Milone (CWS, @MIL)
2015: 3-1, 3.67 ERA, 1.25 WHIP

Milone has bounced back nicely since returning to the Show, but my (gulp) Week 12 recommendation of the Twins lefty is solely based on his matchups. Milone gets the White Sox and Twins, two of the worst offenses going right now. Milwaukee and Chicago rank 28th and 29th, respectively, in wRC+ and wOBA. Only the Phillies are worse. Milone has shown promise in his last two starts, as well, allowing three earned runs across 14 innings with 13 strikeouts. The White Sox struggle to make hard contact against left-handed pitching (23.1 percent Hard%), which is 29th in the league. You're not going to find a better two-start streamer this week with a better pair of matchups than Milone.

C.C. Sabathia (PHI, @HOU)
2015: 3-7, 5.31 ERA, 1.40 WHIP

I never thought I'd be able to write about C.C. Sabathia in a two-start pitching column, but here we are. Sabathia is no longer the ace in New York, and his ownership has dipped below 20 percent in ESPN leagues. I still think Sabathia has something to give fantasy owners, and that especially rings true in Week 12 with matchups against the Phillies and Astros. Sabathia owns a career-worst 5.31 ERA, but he also owns a 4.28 FIP and 3.41 xFIP. That would probably be a good sign for most pitchers, but he ended with very similar numbers a year ago (5.28 ERA, 4.78 FIP, 3.11 xFIP). Sabathia continues to be victimized by the long ball (15HR in 14 starts), including a pair of long balls in three out of his last five starts. Philadelphia shouldn't be a problem, while the Astros do have the most home runs against southpaws (32, the next closest is 24). As long as he can avoid the launching pad in Houston, I think Sabathia can turn in two quality starts in Week 12.

Jon Niese (@MIL, CIN)
2015: 3-7, 4.21 ERA, 1.49 WHIP

Niese is our second 3-7 two-start streamer of Week 12 (Sabathia), and third lefty (!).With whispers of Steven Matz joining the Mets rotation, Niese has turned it on with a 3.60 ERA and 8.1 K/9 in the month of June. Niese has gone seven innings in each of his past two starts against the Giants and Blue Jays, and he's posted a quality start in each of his last three turns. Cincinnati is a much harder matchup in Great American Ballpark - the Reds own just a league average .294 wOBA on the road (compared to .332 at home).

Stats from FanGraphs.com