German Marquez Strikeouts – 196.5
On to the pitchers! And let’s get to the one line that’s going to be more fun to breakdown than the others.
This is a unique line for Marquez. Our intuition immediately says that we should look at the over. After all, this dude hurls like no other in our rotation and is the one dude you can trust to get a K when you need it the most. But breaking down this line goes beyond that.
As we look at his career, Marquez has only broken this number in the 2018 season as he struck out 230 batters. He missed it in 2019 with only 175, but could have very likely broke 196.5 had he not gotten injured. His 2020 season projected much lower, though, as he likely would have only finished with around 170 Ks in a traditional season.
Since his incredible 2018, we’ve also seen his strikeout numbers decrease in general. In terms of K/9 (Ks per every 9 innings), he’s dropped from 10.56 in 2018 to 9.05 in 2019 and 8.04 in 2020. In terms of K%, he’s dropped from 28.2% in 2018 to 24.3% in 2019 and 21.2% in 2020. While he’s still getting very positive results on the mound (career best ERA- in 2020 of 73), hitters seem to be seeing him a little bit better to the point where they’re still getting out, they’re just not striking out against him as often.
Based off his last two seasons, I would have to assume that his K/9 sits around 9 with his K% not breaking 25%. If he does have a K/9 of 9, and we assume 31 starts at 6 innings per start, that gets us right around 186 Ks. The simple math tells us the under is the right choice here.
I am recommending German Marquez Under 196.5 Strikeouts (-115)
German Marquez – 11.5 wins
Antonio Senzatela – 8.5 wins
Jon Gray – 9 wins
I’m going to group these all together for one simple reason:
I cannot trust any pitcher to hit their over here simply for the fact that the offense and bullpen are going to be so unreliable that it’s going to be hard to truly trust that an over is going to hit. On top of that, pitcher wins are generally hard to predict.
Marquez has a career high of 14 wins in 2018 after 33 starts. Senzatela’s high is 11 off 25 starts in 2019. Gray’s highest is 12 in 2018 off 31 starts. If I had to choose one, I would probably side with Senzatela. He gets a decision on 81% of his starts and comes away with a win 45.7% of the time. That’s the highest percent of these three. If we assume he gets around 30 starts this year then that gets us close to 14 wins. That would ideally be enough wiggle room above 8.5 to hit the over. If I had to choose one over, I’d roll with Senzatela.
However, I still don’t trust the bullpen and I do not trust the offense. No matter how well these three pitch, I don’t believe they’ll have enough support behind them to reliably back an over. On the flipside, all these numbers are reasonably set based off FanGraphs projections.
In a rarity for my gambling articles, I am recommending not taking any line here.