Saturday's streaking and slumping starting pitchers
Cole Hamels, Philadelphia Phillies (13-6, 2.91 ERA)
Two wins is hardly a streak but Hamels has been invisible over his last two starts, pitching back-to-back complete game shutouts. He’s allowed only 12 hits and struck out 11 batters in that span. He’s just the third Phillies pitcher to toss back-to-back shutouts in the past 20 years.
Alex Cobb, Tampa Bay Rays (7-8, 4.08 ERA)
Cobb is helping the Rays make a run at the postseason with his recent performances. The right-hander has won three straight starts, posting a 1.29 ERA in that stretch. In his most recent outing, Cobb gave up one run on four hits over seven innings, his fourth straight quality start.
Carlos Villanueva, Toronto Blue Jays (6-2, 3.12 ERA)
Villanueva is 0-2 in his last three starts but isn’t pitching poorly. He has a 3.79 ERA in that span and is coming off a solid effort in which he allowed just one run on five hits over seven innings, taking a no-decision against the White Sox.
Jordan Lyles, Houston Astros (2-9, 5.47 ERA)
Lyles hasn’t earned a “W” since late June and is 0-5 in his last eight starts. The Astros young righty has been better in his previous two starts, giving up just four runs on 11 hits over 14 innings. He’s struck out 11 batters in those two starts as well.