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Home  MLB News  GNUru Special Features  Looking back: The GNUru’s Top 10 Breakout Pitchers
Looking back: The GNUru’s Top 10 Breakout Pitchers
Written by The GNUru   
Jul 12, 2007 at 10:56 AM

Chris Young has been much better than expectedPrior to the start of the 2007 season, the GNUru identified the Top 10 Pitchers that were being touted by the big boys of fantasy baseball (CBS Sportsline, Yahoo, ESPN, etc.) as sleeper and breakout picks. These players were thought to be "Sexy Picks" and many were draft higher than expected due to their perceived value. Now that the season is at the midpoint, the GNUru is here to look back and grade himself with either a thumbs up or a thumbs down. You're not going to get that kind of evaluation over at the big boys!

Thumbs upFelix Hernandez, 20, Seattle Mariners
King Felix was chosen as the GNUru's #1 most over-hyped pitcher heading into the season. While Mr. Hernandez hasn't bombed, as indicated by his 5-4 record and 3.72 ERA, he certainly hasn't lived up to expectations. While Felix has thrown some gems this year, his strikeout totals are down and the wins have been difficult to come by.

Thumbs upScott Kazmir, 23, Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Scott Kazmir is always a popular pick to become the dominant pitcher many scouts believe(d) he can be. As the GNUru previously mentioned, it's hard to have a fantasy ace that is on a bad team like the Devil Rays. Even though Kazmir continues to help teams in the strikeout department, his 5-6 record and 4.41 ERA make him a #3 or #4 starter on a good fantasy team.

Thumbs upErvin Santana, 24, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Yikes...the GNUru was actually kinder to Ervin Santana than he should have been. Those that drafted Santana early are likely hurting as Santana has been terrible! A pathetic 5-10 record to go with a 5.97 ERA has many owners shaking their heads- if they haven't already, they should be considering dropping the pitcher!

Thumbs upChien-Ming Wang, 27, New York Yankees
Chein-Ming Wang continues to pitch like, well, Chien-Ming Wang. So long as your didn't over-value Wang on draft day, you should be pretty pleased with his results thus far. At 9-4 with a 3.36 ERA Wang is clearly a reliable fantasy option but his lack of strikeouts will always keep him from becoming a fantasy ace- but that's what the GNUru said back in spring training.

 Chris R. Young, 27, San Diego Padres
Ok, I'll admit it. The GNUru was dead wrong about Chris Young. Not only is Young 9-4 with a dazzling 2.00 ERA but he has also turned into a guy who can strikeout a few batters. In 103 innings he has 99 strikeouts and is on pace to eclipse the 200 K mark.

 Jeff Francis, 26, Colorado Rockies
The GNUru thought Jeff Francis would come back down to earth after a nice 2006. However, Jeff has surprised the GNUru with his 8-5 record and equally impressive 3.87 ERA. Francis's sexiness was as a back of the fantasy rotation guy and he has certainly excelled as a #4 or #5 starter.

Thumbs upDave Bush, 27, Milwaukee Brewers
As a #5 starter Dave Bush has been adequate but that is only because the Brewers have provided enough run support to produce 7 wins for a guy with a 4.86 ERA. If not for the wins, Bush would be relegated to the free agent pool!

Thumbs upJoe Blanton, 26, Oakland Athletics
The GNUru was reluctant to include Blanton on this list and it appears as if the GNUru's first instincts were correct. Blanton's 8-5 record and 3.28 ERA have been a nice surpise and if you followed the GNUru's advice and selected him late, your team should be in great shape!

Thumbs upZach Duke, 23, Pittsburg Pirates
Zach Duke is probably the biggest buster on this list. Duke's 2007 season has been a nightmare with his 3-7 record and 5.79 ERA. If that wasn't bad enough, his 99 innings of work have yielded just 33 strikeouts. Thus far Duke has done nothing for his fantasy owners!

Thumbs upGustavo Chacin, 26, Toronto Blue Jays
Well, I suppose the GNUru was right about Chacin but he can't take to much credit as Chacin injury was not part of the equation. That said, prior to the injury Gustavo was pretty bad with a 5.60 ERA in his 5 starts.




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