Every year we have one of these guys. A pitcher, usually from a bad team, who comes seemingly out of nowhere to put up a great statistical season. Last year, that guy was Andrew Cashner. This year, the man seems to be Collin McHugh from the Houston Astros.
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Now, run down the category all that you’d like. But if your league counts wins, you can’t completely discount the category. But, McHugh is 4-0 in his last five starts. Also, some good pitchers that are available go unowned because of fairly modest strikeout totals. But if you look at those numbers, that’s an even strikeout an inning ratio all year, and slightly better in the Majors. He’s pitching way too well to be available in nearly two-thirds of fantasy leagues.
September 9 (Road)/September 20 (Home): Seattle Mariners
The M’s are having a great year, but don’t exactly strike fear into the hearts of opponents with their bats. With a very good pitching rotation led by Felix Hernandez, they’re a team that nobody wants to see in the playoffs. Still, they aren’t really a team that you try to avoid with your fantasy pitchers.
Monday, September 15: vs. Cleveland Indians
The Indians are a good offense. They’re not great, but good. Of the four remaining starts, this is the one I’d be most likely to stay away from, but McHugh’s statistics aren’t a complete product of bad opponents. After all, he completely shut the Angels down in his most recent outing.
Early week match-ups are always tricky, but I’d give a thumbs up to this one.
Friday, September 26: at New York Mets
Speaking as someone that has Collin McHugh on his fantasy team, I’m really hoping that the Astros don’t shut him down before this game. Virtually nothing works against him, while plenty of things point to a great outing.
- The Mets are a bad offensive team.
- Citi Field is a great place to pitch.
- The Mets are out of contention. Daniel Murphy is already on the DL and has no reason to come back. Who knows if the other Mets stalwart hitters will be in the lineup.
- McHugh’s been facing a DH all year. In a National League park, he’ll get a break by facing the pitcher.
- McHugh is a former Met that may have a little bit of incentive to show his old team what they’re missing out on. Grudges aren’t exactly statistically sound, but can never be completely discounted.
Again. Astros, please do not shut him down for this one.
If McHugh throws four complete games, he’ll still come short of 200 innings on the season, so I’m not really afraid of him getting tired.
He projects very well for the final four starts of the season. Do not be afraid to add Collin McHugh for the season’s final push.