Originally posted on Sons of Roto  |  Last updated 4/30/12

Photo Credit: Keith Allison

Jason Hammel will be facing the Yankees in the Bronx in about an hour. Whenever a pitcher goes against the Yankees (especially in their home park), fantasy owners tend to be shook. Me? I’m streaming the **** out of Hammel tonight, and the odds are pretty good that our partnership will last past Monday (pause). Many of you are probably thinking, “B-B-But Starbonell! This is the same guy who has posted ERAs over 4.7 the last two years! Y-You’re kidding, right?”

Nope.

More after the jump:

If I told you there was a pitcher sitting on waivers in more than half of Yahoo! leagues who was dealing in the mid-90s, racking up grounders like crazy, punching out a bunch of batters, and already sitting on three wins, you would likely stop what you were doing and run to your computer to pick him up. Yet chances are, if you found out that player was Jason Hammel, you would just say, “Oh, he’ll come back down to earth.” It’s easy people to say “this guy sucks” and point at his atrocious production in Colorado, but not every pitcher with a scrub track record remains a bum for life.

Hammel’s hot start does not appear to be luck-fueled at all. For starters, he’s throwing harder than ever (93.5 mph average on fastball) and is inducing more swings-and-misses (10.3 SwStr%; 7.8 career). It’s obvious that increased velocity and an uptick in whiffs is a common correlation, but Hammel isn’t just missing more bats. The contact he’s inducing is weak as hell as he’s putting up a 14.7 LD% and 61.8 GB%. Anytime you add swinging strike potential and a high number of grounders (or a low number of line drives), it usually equals fantasy owners creaming their pants. Yet because Hammel has this aura of “sucking” surrounding his reputation, many aren’t willing to take a flier.

I’m not saying Hammel is the answer to your starting pitching woes or that he is definitely having a breakout year, but it’s pretty clear that he is pitching the best baseball of his life right now. Say what you want about regression to the mean or the AL East effect (because for some reason, no one is allowed to succeed in baseball’s hardest division… you know, except for all the dudes that do), but just remember that this is baseball. A lot stranger **** has happened and if these trends hold up for Hammel, there is no way he won’t be a must-own player in all 12-team mixed formats this year.

 

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Osweiler: Film from last two years proves I should be starter

Daughter of Bucks owner burns Bill Simmons on Twitter

Tiger Woods tells golf world to try and kick this football he’s holding

Tyronn Lue: Gameplanning to defend Celtics harder than Warriors

How the Senators can upset the Penguins in Game 7

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Paxton Lynch cutting out early while other QBs stay late

Michael Jordan unique 1984 Converse shoes could fetch up to $100K at auction

Joe Girardi has interesting reason why no medical scans for Masahiro Tanaka

Ezekiel Elliott’s mom fires back after son criticized for being in car accident

Browns make Ryan Grigson senior personnel executive

Potential No. 1 pick Markelle Fultz looks positively jacked in recent photo

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

Box Score 5/24: Craig Anderson saves the Senators

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

Box Score 5/23: Preds, Warriors move on to respective Finals

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Two months in and Nintendo's Switch dominates 2017 video game market

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker