Pedro Strop
Pedro Strop
33-Year-Old PitcherRP
Chicago Cubs
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Strop remains one the game's most reliable setup men, having posted his sixth straight sub-3.00 ERA season. He failed to record 20 holds for the first time since 2013, instead being called upon to close on several occasions and registering 13 saves. Strop is one of the rare relievers using a true four-pitch mix (fastball, splitter, sinker, slider) with his split and slider both thrown about 30% of the time. Of some concern is an across-the-board drop in velocity, likely the reason for a second straight year with a falling strikeout clip. Last season, Strop whiffed fewer than a batter an inning for the first time since 2012. Strop's role entering 2019 is a bit unclear. Oft-injured closer Brandon Morrow underwent an offseason elbow procedure, and may not be ready to start the season. The Cubs could bring someone else in, but as of now, Strop is next-in-line and thus will be sought after in all formats. Beware the dropping dominance, but don't be afraid to invest. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, $5,85 million contract extension with the Cubs in February of 2017. Cubs exercised $6.25 million team option for 2019 in November of 2018.
Expected to open season as closer
PChicago Cubs
February 13, 2019
Strop is expected open the season as the Cubs' closer, Jordan Bastian of reports.
With Brandon Morrow (elbow) slated to miss at least the first month of the season, it sounds like Strop will handle the ninth inning in his absence. This isn't all too surprising, as Strop filled in as the team's closer in 2018 when Morrow was hurt. The right-hander was stellar for the Cubs last season, converting 13 saves while posting a 2.26 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 8.6 K/9 in 59.2 innings.
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Pitching Stats
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .183 266 66 33 42 10 1 4
Since 2016vs Right .185 411 116 29 68 13 1 8
2018vs Left .217 97 20 13 18 5 0 1
2018vs Right .155 143 37 8 20 3 0 3
2017vs Left .178 102 28 11 16 5 0 0
2017vs Right .227 148 37 15 29 6 1 4
2016vs Left .143 67 18 9 8 0 1 3
2016vs Right .173 120 42 6 19 4 0 1
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
Since 2016Home 3.10 1.09 81.1 6 4 8 9.6 2.8 0.7
Since 2016Away 2.20 0.97 85.0 7 3 5 9.9 3.9 0.6
2018Home 2.51 0.94 28.2 1 0 8 8.2 2.8 0.6
2018Away 2.03 1.03 31.0 5 1 5 9.0 3.5 0.6
2017Home 2.93 1.17 30.2 4 3 0 9.1 2.1 0.3
2017Away 2.73 1.18 29.2 1 1 0 10.3 5.8 0.9
2016Home 4.09 1.18 22.0 1 1 0 12.3 3.7 1.2
2016Away 1.78 0.63 25.1 1 1 0 10.7 2.1 0.4
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Stat Review
How does Pedro Strop compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 innings). The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.
95.1 mph
Strand %
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Pedro Strop
The Z Files: Historical Top 200
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Todd Zola takes a look at the end-of-season top-200 performers over the last five years and thinks Charlie Blackmon's being discounted too heavily in early drafts given his track record.
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152 days ago
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NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
153 days ago
Jan Levine reminds fantasy waiver wire pickers to snag the surging David Dahl, who's teasing 2019 sleeper value in the closing weeks of 2018.
Fantasy Baseball Injury Report: Jansen's Ready to Close Again
159 days ago
Jeff Stotts expects closer Kenley Jansen, who has missed time with a heart arrhythmia, will be back with the Dodgers for their series against Cincinnati.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
Strop registered more than 20 holds for the fifth time in his last six seasons in 2017. It's no coincidence that Strop's ERA has been sub-3.00 in each of those five campaigns. Add in the fact that he strikes out more than a batter an inning and Strop is a great example of why it's not necessary to chase the brand name middle relievers -- he usually comes cheap and has been consistently reliable. The only chink in his armor is a high walk rate (3.9 BB/9 last season), something that has been a hindrance to ninth-inning duties. However, a groundball rate over 50 percent minimizes homers and is in large part responsible for his low ERA. Strop dials up his fastball at 96 mph, while mixing in a slider and cutter. After signing an extension with the Cubs last spring, Strop will be back in his customary setup role, where his holds will come in handy in leagues counting them, along with deeper leagues where reliever ratios and whiffs are useful.
Strop has quietly established himself as one of the most consistent setup men in the league, with 2016 marking his third consecutive season with an ERA under 3.00. Despite missing most of August and September following knee surgery, Strop helped anchor the bullpen of the title-winning Cubs, finishing the regular season with a 2.85 ERA and 0.89 WHIP to go along with a 2-2 record and 60 strikeouts in just 47.1 innings pitched, which equates to an elite 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings. He reached 20 holds for a third straight season, even with his time missed due to injury. Strop dropped his walk rate to 2.9 BB/9 (easily a career-best), down from 3.8 in 2015, while posting a groundball rate just south of 60 percent. Strop figures to remain in a high-leverage role in 2017, potentially handling primary setup duties in front of Wade Davis.
Most Cubs fans will remember the 2013 Scott Feldman trade as the deal that brought Jake Arrieta to Chicago, but Strop also came over in that deal, and he's been arguably the best player in the Cubs' bullpen over the last three seasons. Strop's 28 holds ranked third in the National League, and he struck out a career-high 10.7 batters per nine innings in 2015. While he gives up a few too many free passes to be trusted as an elite closer, he only walked three in his final 18 appearances of the season, and he has been used in the ninth inning at times over the last few years. Although Hector Rondon's performance as the closer over the last two years has been strong, he doesn't quite have a vise grip on the job. Strop is definitely the target for those who don't have confidence that Rondon can keep the role.
Going into last season, Strop was a sleeper to earn some saves for the Cubs, as no one believed Jose Veras would last the whole year as the closer. Though Strop got an early save and Veras was out of a job by mid-April, the job ultimately went to Hector Rondon. That said, Strop was still an important part of the bullpen, earning 21 holds to go with a 2.21 ERA and 71 strikeouts in 61 innings. Add in the 35 innings he pitched after coming over from the Orioles in 2013 and Strop now has nearly a 100-inning sample of strong pitching in the National League. Expect him to continue his success as a setup man for the Cubs this year.
Though Strop did not help move the needle in a pennant race, few pitchers took more advantage of a change in scenery last year. His 22.1 innings with the Orioles included a forgettable 7.25 ERA, among other atrocities, but three great post-trade months with the Cubs have Strop possibly in a position to close this year. In 35 innings with the Cubs, he had an outstanding 42:11 K:BB ratio and a low strand rate of 63.6%, suggesting that he might have actually been a bit unlucky. The Cubs should be looking for bullpen help during the offseason, but with Kevin Gregg now gone, Strop could be their top closing option. Don't forget him on draft day.
Strop spent most of the 2012 season as the primary setup man for Jim Johnson and he used his fastball-slider combo to churn out a 1.67 ERA and 1.19 WHIP for the first half. He slipped some in the second half, but the Orioles are rumored to think that Strop is a closer in waiting. Strop averaged nearly 97 mph on his fastball, up from 94 mph in 2011. If Strop can cut down on his walk rate (5.0 BB/9) he could inch toward his potential as a future ninth-inning option.
Strop, who was traded from the Rangers to the Orioles midseason, really settled in after the move, posting a 0.73 ERA in 12 appearances with Baltimore. Still, the same control issues which have defined his career have lingered. He had a 4.09 BB/9IP for the whole season and owns a 5.67 career mark. If he can find the strike zone, his strikeout numbers could carry him to usefulness (9.30 K/9IP), but for now he is still a work in progress
Strop shuttled back and forth between Triple-A Oklahoma City and the majors last season, posting poor numbers with Texas (10.2 innings, 17 hits, 12 earned runs, 11:11 K:BB) and excellent numbers in the minors (42.1 innings, 32 hits, nine earned runs, 57:14 K:BB). Whether he'll be able to translate his minor-league success into something serviceable in the majors remains to be seen.
Strop showed limited upside, getting sent down to Double-A Frisco after getting bombed early on at Triple-A Oklahoma City. His numbers at Double-A Frisco (51.1 innings, 48 hits, 48:29 K:BB) weren't good, and the promise he showed back in 2007 at Single-A (54.2 innings, 75 K) after being converted from a shortstop may have been left on the operating table back in 2008 when he underwent surgery for an elbow fracture.
More Fantasy News
Club option picked up
PChicago Cubs
November 1, 2018
Strop's $6.25 million club option for 2019 was picked up by the Cubs on Thursday, Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune reports.
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Available for NL Wild Card Game
PChicago Cubs
October 2, 2018
Strop (hamstring) is available out of the bullpen for Tuesday's NL Wild Card Game against the Rockies, Jesse Rogers of reports.
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Makes wild-card roster
PChicago Cubs
October 2, 2018
Strop (hamstring) is on the 25-man roster for Tuesday's wild-card game against the Rockies.
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Expected to be available Tuesday
PChicago Cubs
October 1, 2018
Strop (hamstring) said he'll be ready to go for Tuesday's wild-card game against the Dodgers or Rockies, Jesse Rogers of reports.
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Not returning this weekend
PChicago Cubs
September 29, 2018
Strop (hamstring) said Saturday that he will not pitch this weekend, but he is aiming to return Thursday, Mark Gonzales of The Chicago Tribune reports.
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