Fantasy Baseball

Player Spotlight: 2019 Fantasy Baseball Pablo Lopez


At just 17 years old Pablo Lopez became a professional baseball player. The Seattle Mariners signed Lopez out of Venezuela back in July of 2012. He quickly made a positive impression, going 7-1 with a 2.57 ERA in the Venezuelan Summer League in 12 starts. Lopez would then undergo Tommy John Surgery, missing the entire 2014 season.

Coming back from injury Lopez would pitch in 80 minor league games over the next five years, compiling 23-17 record with a 2.93 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. Lopez was not a strikeout pitcher by any means, as he struck out just 307 batters over 396 innings pitched, which is good for a 7 K/9. The most impressive part of Lopez’s minor league career was his control. In those 396 innings, Lopez walked just 58 batters, a 1.32 BB/9.

During the 2017 season, Lopez was shipped to the Miami Marlins along with three other Seattle Mariners minor leaguers in exchange for pitcher David Phelps.

The Marlins would promote Lopez to the big leagues on June 30, 2018, where he would make his major league debut at home against the New York Mets. Lopez would pick up the win, going six innings, allowing two runs and striking out five.

Pablo would finish the 2018 season 2-4 with a 4.14 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP, in 58.2 innings. His 7.1 K/9 was nearly identical to what he did in the minors, however, his BB/9 was a little high at 2.76.

Player Spotlight: 2019 Fantasy Baseball Pablo Lopez

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Lopez won his first start of this season against the Rockies before losing three straight starts thanks to the offense getting shut out in all three.

In a stretch of 8 starts which includes the three straight shutouts, Lopez got a total of 9 runs of support. Looks like last August was no fluke, this offense is awful.

Despite the lack of run support, Lopez has put together a very good season for the Marlins. He’s 5-5 on the worst team in the National League, and he’s responsible for 20% of the teams wins.

Of his 14 starts this year, Lopez has had just one really bad start. This came against the Mets on May 10 when he would last just three innings, allowing three  home runs and 10 earned runs. Even with this outing, Lopez has an ERA of 4.23. Take away this start and Lopez has a much more attractive 3.18 ERA for the year.

Believe it or not, Lopez would make his next start against the Mets again but this time he got the best of them, allowing just 1 hit and shutting them out over seven innings.

Lopez has done a great job keeping the ball in the yard this year. In 10 of his 14 starts, he has not allowed a home run. Pablo has allowed just 8 long balls on the year (remember he gave up 3 against the Mets in one game).

Over his last four starts, Lopez is 2-0 with a 1.80 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP. He has allowed just 18 hits and five earned runs over 25 innings. He’s struck out 23 batters compared to just four walks.

He’s beginning to go deeper into games for the Marlins, as he’s gone six or more innings in these four starts.

Gone Fishin’

At this point Lopez is a must add. He’s 3-0 and has five quality starts over his last six outings.

Pablo has become more of a strikeout pitcher this year as well, striking out 73 batters in 76.2 innings. He has walked just 18 batters on the year, keeping his WHIP low at 1.12.

Next up for Lopez are the St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday night. He has yet to face them this season, but did pitch against them last year, allowing just 2 runs over seven innings. He actually took a shutout into the 7th inning before Paul DeJong took him deep for a 2 run home run.

After the Cardinals, Lopez will finish out the first half of the season with two starts against the surging Washington Nationals. The Nats chased Lopez out of the game in the fourth inning back in May. Lopez finished that game going 3.2 innings, allowing 7 hits, four earned runs.

We expect Lopez to pitch better next Wednesday.

Check out the rest of our 2019 Fantasy Baseball content from our great team of writers.

About Mike Lott

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