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The Week Ahead

Week Ahead: Free Feldman

by Nick Nelson
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

He's out there in more than 90 percent of leagues, free for the taking. Scott Feldman has been an unsung contributor in the Astros rotation, and recently has been coming on especially strong. 

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Feldman lacks the sexy velocity readings and strikeout rates of some other hurlers out there, but he has been very solid over the past couple seasons since signing with Houston as a free agent, and he's been absolutely locked in over the past month.

In his last six starts, Feldman holds 1.80 ERA. In 40 innings, he has allowed only 35 hits (three homers) and six walks. 

That's good news, because in the coming week he's slated to get the Mariners and Twins, both at home. He's one of several recommended options this week that is likely to be available in your league. Read on to find more.

[NOTE: As reader Matt points out, the Astros have recently been using a six-man rotation. If they stick with that next week, Feldman would only pitch once, as Houston is scheduled for six games. If so, he'd still be a nice streamer at home against Seattle on Monday.]

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* Jimmy Nelson issued a whopping eight walks in his last start, but that looks like a fluke considering it matches his total from the previous five starts combined. In those five starts, Nelson had registered a 2.20 ERA with 30 strikeouts in 32 innings. He'll get the Pirates and Reds next week.

* Rick Porcello has to be viewed as a risky play based on his 5.47 ERA and 1.40 WHIP, but he looked excellent in his return from the disabled list this past week and is looking ahead to a pair of home match-ups, including one against the Phillies.

* Colby Lewis, available in more than 60 percent of Yahoo leagues, is 6-2 with a 3.57 ERA since the All-Star break. He goes twice away from home, but he has turned in seven straight quality starts on the road and he's facing a pair of unintimidating offenses in the Angels and Padres.

* You can't bet against Madison Bumgarner with the way he's been going lately, but I'd advise at least a smidgen of caution with road dates against the Dodgers and Rockies on tap.

* Rookie Jerad Eickhoff has performed well in his first couple big-league starts, putting up a 2.25 ERA with 11 strikeouts and two walks in 12 innings, but I'd be a little wary with two road starts coming up.

* Bartolo Colon has pitched well in August outside of a clunker at Coors Field. You've got to like his match-ups at home against Philadelphia and in Miami.

* Chris Bassitt will get the Angels and Mariners -- both bottom-four scoring offenses in the AL -- at home, where he owns a 1.83 ERA.

* Tyler Duffey has been excellent for the Twins since a rocky debut in Toronto, and he starts his week with a home tilt against the White Sox.

Going Twice...

American League

Strong Plays

David Price: CLE, BAL

Felix Hernandez: @HOU, @OAK

Chris Archer: @BAL, @NYY

Johnny Cueto: DET, CWS

Scott Feldman: SEA, MIN

Justin Verlander: @KC, CLE

Chris Sale: @MIN, @KC

Wei-Yin Chen: TB, @TOR

Decent Plays

Colby Lewis: @SD, @LAA

Chris Bassitt: LAA, SEA

Ivan Nova: @BOS, TB

Tyler Duffey: CWS, @HOU

Hector Santiago: @OAK, TEX

At Your Own Risk

Rick Porcello: NYY, PHI

Josh Tomlin: @TOR, @DET

National League

Strong Plays

John Lackey: WAS, PIT

Madison Bumgarner: @LAD, @COL

Tyson Ross: TEX, LAD

Zack Greinke: SF, @SD

Shelby Miller: MIA, @WAS

Decent Plays

Gio Gonzalez: @STL, ATL

Andrew Cashner: TEX, LAD

Bartolo Colon: PHI, @MIA

Jimmy Nelson: PIT, @CIN

Brett Anderson: SF, @SD

Kyle Hendricks: CIN, ARI

Joe Ross: @STL, ATL

At Your Own Risk

Jake Peavy: @LAD, @COL

Jeff Locke: @MIL, @STL

Jerad Eickhoff: @NYM, @BOS

Chad Bettis: ARI, SF

David Holmberg: @CHC, MIL

Mike Foltynewicz: MIA, @WAS

Patrick Corbin: @COL, @CHC

Chris Narveson: @ATL, NYM

Streamer City

The following pitchers are generally available in over 50 percent of fantasy leagues and have favorable match-ups this week:

American League

Wednesday, September 2: Kevin Gausman vs. TB

Gausman has notched three consecutive quality starts, with a 22-to-3 K/BB ratio in 20 innings during that span. Premium option here against the lowest-scoring offense in the AL.

Wednesday, September 2: Carlos Rodon vs. MIN

The electric rookie remains unowned in most leagues despite his dominant recent work. He's definitely worth playing in this tilt at Target Field.

Friday, September 4: Kris Medlen vs. CWS

Medlen has looked sharp in early action since returning to the Royals, posting a 3.10 ERA with 20 strikeouts in 20 innings.

National League

Tuesday, September 1: Jon Niese vs. PHI

Niese has been knocked around on the road in his last couple starts, but I like his chances of getting back on track at home against the Phillies.

Wednesday, September 2: Taylor Jungmann vs. PIT

The rookie possesses a shiny 2.66 ERA in 14 starts for the Brewers and is a good candidate for strikeouts against a K-prone Pittsburgh lineup.

Saturday, September 5: Brad Hand vs. NYM

Hand has allowed three runs over 14 innings in his last two starts, and has a 2.30 ERA at home this season.

Total Games

American League


National League



The Infirmary

You can get a full listing of injured players at Rotoworld's Injury Page but here's the latest on a few prominent players who have been out of action:

Jorge Soler: Out until late September (ribs)

Carlos Carrasco: Out until early September (shoulder)

Anibal Sanchez: Out until mid-September (shoulder)

Daniel Norris: Out until late September (ribs)

Kendry Flores: Out until mid-September (shoulder)

CC Sabathia: Out until late September (knee)

Kendall Graveman: Out until late September (ribs)

Desmond Jennings: Out indefinitely (knee)

Denard Span: Out indefinitely (hip)

Nick Nelson

Nick Nelson is a frequent contributor to NBC Sports Edge's baseball coverage and regularly blogs about the Minnesota Twins at Twins Daily. Follow him on Twitter @NickNelsonMN.