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Deep Pickups 4/29: Pitchers

by Nick Nelson
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:09 pm ET

Hector Santiago - SP, LAA

After operating solely as a reliever and posting strong results for the White Sox in 2012, Santiago transitioned to the rotation in Chicago last year and the results continued to be encouraging. Despite some persisting control issues (4.3 BB/9), the lefty put up a 3.56 ERA in 149 innings across 34 appearances (23 starts).

The Angels, seeking to improve a rotation that was horrible in 2013, acquired Santiago in a three-team offseason blockbuster, and now they've fitted him into a reconfigured starting corps that also features Tyler Skaggs, who was added alongside Santiago in the trade.

In his first five starts for the Halos, Santiago has very closely resembled the guy he was last season. He has tallied some strikeouts (23 in 26 innings), he has been hampered by walks (13), and he has received very little run support.

Last year, Chicago's anemic offense was routinely quiet when Santiago was on the mound, leading to a 7-16 team record in his starts despite his solid work, and a 4-7 record for the southpaw. That wasn't too surprising considering the White Sox scored the fewest runs of any AL team overall.

It is a little surprising to see Santiago getting so little support from his new offense. The Angels have scored the second-most runs in the league this year, but have averaged just 2.2 runs per game in Santiago's starts, saddling him with an 0-4 record.

Obviously, that's not going to last. Eventually the potent Los Angeles lineup will begin backing up the 26-year-old hurler, and that will benefit his W/L record. As long as he continues to strike hitters out at a solid rate while posting solid results, that should make him a quality in addition in fantasy leagues.

Josh Collmenter - SP, ARI

The majority of Collmenter's MLB career has been spent in the bullpen, but he has spent significant time as both a starter and reliever, and has proven capable in both roles.

Last year he worked exclusively in the bullpen for the Diamondbacks, and he started this season back in a relief role, but after the Arizona rotation imploded in the first couple weeks he was shifted back into starting duty. He's looking solid and quickly emerging as a nice pickup in deeper leagues.

Collmenter is still acclimating after his long layoff from starting, and that was evident in his first two turns as he gave up seven runs in 10 innings. He looked much sharper in his most recent outing, when he hurled six scoreless innings with five strikeouts and zero walks to pick up his first win of the year.

Over the course of his career, the righty has racked up more strikeouts as a reliever (8.1 K/9) than as a starter (6.4 K/9), which is pretty normal, but when in the rotation he's been defined by his outstanding control. In 212 career innings as a starter, he has issued only 44 walks, good for a tremendous 1.9 BB/9 rate that would annually rank him among the game's finest control pitchers.

Collmenter's ability to throw strikes has helped him register a strong 1.16 WHIP in the majors. His ability to limit base runners has been his greatest asset and that should continue to be the case going forward.

As long as he can keep pitching the way he has, he ought to be a fine fantasy asset, and perhaps the only one in Arizona's messy rotation.

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