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Two-Start Pitchers: Week 13 (June 29-July 5)

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Ranking and tiering the two-start pitchers in Week 13, including Kyle Hendricks, Mike Montgomery and Kendall Graveman.

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Just when things were starting to turn around (again), Charlie Morton implodes against the Nationals, giving up nine runs in less than an inning, breaking up a string of five straight wins for the Bucco and putting a damper on my Week 11 picks. That stings. Last week's results weren't great either, with C.C. Sabathia lasting less than five innings, allowing two home runs in a loss to the lowly Philadelphia Phillies. Fortunately, Tommy Milone picked up the slack, a win and a quality start against the White Sox, and Jon Niese threw a quality start – without the win – against the Brewers. Niese's second start of the week was bumped with the news of Steven Matz getting the call, and Milone gets the Brewers in Milwaukee today.

My unfortunate results so far

16-30 (64 starts, 29 quality starts)
5.20 ERA
6.73 K/9
2.53 BB/9
1.38 WHIP

Start!

Sonny Gray: Tue-COL (De La Rosa), Sun-SEA (Montgomery)
Madison Bumgarner: Sat-@WSH (Strasburg)
Gerrit Cole: Tue-@DET (Verlander), Sun-CLE (Carrasco)
Carlos Carrasco: Tue-@TB (Ramirez), Sun-@PIT (Cole)
Cole Hamels: Tue-MIL (Jungmann), Sun-@ATL (Miller)

Tier 1

Danny Salazar: Mon-@TB (Karns), Sat-@PIT (Locke)
Shelby Miller: Tue-WSH (Zimmermann), Sun-PHI (Hamels)
Jordan Zimmermann: Tue-@ATL (Miller), Sun-SF (Vogelsong)
Marco Estrada: Tue-BOS (Rodriguez), Sun-@DET (Verlander)
Kendall Graveman: Mon-COL (Hale), Sat-SEA (Hernandez)
Mike Bolsinger: Mon-@ARI (Webster), Sun-NYM (Matz)
Clay Buchholz: Mon-@TOR (Dickey), Sat-HOU (McHugh)

Tier 2

C.J. Wilson: Mon-NYY (Sabathia), Sun-@TEX (Lewis)
Lance McCullers: Mon-KC (Duffy), Sun-@BOS (Rodriguez)
Kyle Hendricks: Tue-@NYM (Niese), Sun-MIA (Latos)
Nathan Karns: Mon-CLE (Salazar), Sat-@NYY (Pineda)
Ian Kennedy: Tue-SEA (Montgomery), Sun-@STL (Garcia)
Mike Montgomery: Tue-@SD (Kennedy), Sun-@OAK (Gray)
Mike Leake: Mon-MIN (Pelfrey), Sun-MIL (Jungmann)
Jimmy Nelson: Mon-@PHI (O'Sullivan), Sat-@CIN (Simon)
Mat Latos: Tue-SF (Vogelsong), Sun-@CHC (Hendricks)

Tier 3

Miguel Gonzalez: Tue-TEX (Lewis), Sun-@CWS (Samardzija)
David Hale: Mon-@OAK (Graveman), Sat-@ARI (Webster)
Danny Duffy: Mon-@HOU (McCullers), Sat-MIN (Pelfrey)
Rubby De La Rosa: Tue-LAD (Frias), Sun-COL (De La Rosa)
Bud Norris: Mon-TEX (Rodriguez), Sat-@CWS (Danks)
R.A. Dickey: Mon-BOS (Buchholz), Sat-@DET (Price)
Erasmo Ramirez: Tue-CLE (Carrasco), Sun-@NYY (Sabathia)
Colby Lewis: Tue-@BAL (Gonzalez), Sun-LAA (Wilson)
Mike Pelfrey: Mon-@CIN (Leake), Sat-@KC (Duffy)
Ryan Vogelsong: Tue-@MIA (Latos), Sun-@WSH (Zimmermann)

Not this week

Jorge De La Rosa: Tue-@OAK (Gray), Sun-@ARI (De La Rosa)
Taylor Jungmann: Tue-@PHI (Hamels), Sun-@CIN (Leake)
Sean O'Sullivan: Mon-MIL (Nelson), Sat-@ATL (Wood)
Eduardo Rodriguez: Tue-@TOR (Estrada), Sun-HOU (McCullers)
Wandy Rodriguez: Mon-@BAL (Norris), Sat-LAA (Santiago)
CC Sabathia: Mon-@LAA (Wilson), Sun-TB (Ramirez)
Justin Verlander: Tue-PIT (Cole), Sun-TOR (Estrada)
Allen Webster: Mon-LAD (Bolsinger), Sat-COL (Hale)

My Week 13 Picks

Kyle Hendricks, Cubs (@NYM, MIA)
2015: 2-4, 4.46 ERA, 1.22 WHIP

Hendricks is only 2-4 on the year and carries a 4.46 ERA, but the 25-year-old right-hander has seen an upswing in his swinging strike rate (say that 10 times fast), over the last month plus. His last two games haven't yielded great results, but prior to that he had seven strikeouts in four of six games. The plus side here is Hendricks rarely beats himself up with the free pass. He owns a solid 4.6 percent walk rate, with a 19.4 percent strikeout rate. On top of that, he continues to pound the ground with a 50 percent groundball rate. There really isn't anything not to like here, although he sometimes has trouble going deep into games, which has resulted in a spiked ERA; he owns a 3.72 FIP and 3.60 xFIP. Hendricks gets the Mets and Marlins in Week 13, two of the lowest scoring teams in baseball. With news of Giancarlo Stanton expected to miss time with a broken left hand, that Miami matchup looks even sweeter.

Mike Montgomery, Mariners (@SD, @OAK)
2015: 2-2, 2.04 ERA, 0.96 WHIP

No, I don't expect Montgomery to continue at a 2.00 ERA pace, but I'm willing to bet on the 25-year-old left-hander for at least one more week in a pair of favorable starts against the Padres and the Athletics. He's held opposing hitters to a line of .208/.259/.277 in five starts, and he's gone six innings or more in all five, including a complete-game shutout with 10 strikeouts against the Royals his last time out. Through his first five major league starts, Montgomery looks like he has staying power as a fourth or fifth starter. He's not overpowering, but you should take advantage by owning him now when opposing teams are still trying to figure the rookie ehim out.

Kendall Graveman, Athletics (COL, SEA)
2015: 4-4, 3.86 ERA, 1.41 WHIP

Don't be scared by the Rockies matchup - Colorado is a much easier team to beat on the road than in Coors Field. And the Mariners continue to struggle, especially on the road, as they own the 24th worst wOBA away from Safeco (.292). In addition, Graveman has been a completely different pitcher since his return, allowing no more than three runs in any start. He's even started throwing more strikeouts, with games of 6, 7, and 6 in three of his last four starts. This is a perfect week to stream Graveman, who is still available in 85 percent of ESPN leagues. He owns a nice 2.31 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and five quality starts in his last 35 innings of work (five starts overall).

Stats from FanGraphs.com