Second Half Breakout Pitcher:
Collin McHugh (Owned in 37.1% of ESPN Fantasy leagues)
McHugh has gone through this before. After a rough first half of the season, fantasy owners give up on McHugh because of his high ERA and WHIP. However, McHugh is known as a second half pitcher.
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So far in 2016, McHugh is having an eerily similar year to 2015. In his 18 starts, he is 5-6 with a 4.50 ERA. At this time in 2015, McHugh had a 9-5 record with a 4.50 ERA. What did he do last year in the second half? In his 14 starts after the All-Star break, McHugh went 10-2 with a 3.11 ERA and 1.29 WHIP.
The one thing that may affect his second half is his WHIP in 2016. McHugh has had more trouble this season with getting runners on base, with a 1.46 WHIP. Per nine innings, he has given up, on average, 10.5 hits and 2.6 walks. However, McHugh is still very good at leaving runners on base. This season, he leaves runners on base 73.6% of the time, which is only 0.7% less from last season.
Part of the reason for his success here is his strikeout ability. With a strikeout percentage up 1.3% from last season, McHugh has 94 strikeouts in 119 innings in 2016.
As a second half pitcher, McHugh needs to be his regular self for the Astros to be successful. Fantasy owners will be pleased with his production if he puts up similar numbers to his second halves in 2015 and 2016 respectively.
***Stats provided by MLB.com, Baseball Reference, and FanGraphs***