For many teams, Sunday could mark the end of their 2011 season. Head-to-head leagues are in the playoffs and teams facing elimination will need their team’s best effort to advance on. Hopefully enough categories are close enough to make winning a possibility as opposed to an unthinkable long-shot.
Since there will be different situations across leagues on Sunday, I will break the picks up between all-in picks and standard picks. All-in picks are for those who need a miracle and just need to pile up strikeouts, win chances and hope for the best with the rates. They will want to scoop as many standard picks as they can, but they may also need to dip into the all-in ones depending on availability.
Standard Picks: recommended for anyone employing spot-starting this season.
Javier Vazquez (FLO @ PIT) – He has allowed more than three just once since June 12th, I have no idea how he isn’t on more teams. He is easily the #1 spot start for Sunday especially with a favorable opponent.
Josh Collmenter (ARI v. SD) – I remain stunned at how little love he has gotten this year even as his sample of quality of work expands. He is still too available in my opinion. He has been really sharp since a flameout start to begin August allowing no more than two runs in any of his six subsequent starts. Throw in a very favorable opponent and he is an easy auto-start.
James McDonald (PIT v. FLO) – Obviously recommending opponents against each other limits the amount of wins you could possibly get, but Vazquez also might be on a team in your league whereas McDonald isn’t as likely to be on one. He hasn’t quite been as sharp as Vazquez of late, but he hasn’t given up more than three runs since August 5th.
All-In Picks: recommending only for team managers desperate to make an impact whether in their final day of their H2H battle or in the waning days of their roto league.
Jake Westbrook (STL v. ATL) – The Braves are reeling having lost 7 of 10 while Westbrook was really sharp his last time out including nine strikeouts. It was the first time he struck out more than four since July 15th.
Zach Stewart (CHW v. CLE) – After two shellackings, he went & threw a one-hit shutout with nine strikeouts against Minnesota in his last outing. The odd thing is that one of the shellackings was doled out by the Twins. He has shown both his upside & downside. Like the Braves, the Indians are 3-8 in their last 10.
Edinson Volquez (CIN @ COL) – First off he is starting in Coors Field which is enough to make this a Hail Mary pick, but also consider that he is returning from the minors where he was sent for poor performance. However anyone with any knowledge of Volquez knows just how good he can be so it might worth taking the chance that he returns to the majors with a bang.