Walker Buehler
Walker Buehler
25-Year-Old PitcherSP
Los Angeles Dodgers
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Buehler was a blast to watch pitch as a rookie in 2018 as he showcased an electric fastball along with two different breaking balls. It was easy to see why he was a first-round draft pick and it is going to be hard to restrain ourselves this draft season in chasing him for our rosters. However, that pursuit should be exercised with an amount of caution. Buehler already has one Tommy John surgery under his belt, which limited the amount of pitching he could do in the minor leagues. Those restrictions were not present last season as Buehler threw a total of 173 innings, nearly doubling his total from 2017. At age 24, to have a workload jump of that size is a risk to keep in mind if you decide you are all in on rostering the young flamethrower. Everything else we want to see in a young future ace is here (21.1% K-BB, 50% GB%), and the team context is certainly favorable. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a contract with the Dodgers in July of 2015 that includes a $1.78 million signing bonus.
Brilliant in no-decision
PLos Angeles Dodgers
August 21, 2019
Buehler threw seven scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Blue Jays on Wednesday, giving up five hits, striking out eight and walking none as the Dodgers picked up a 2-1 extra-inning victory.
ANALYSIS
He didn't get the win in a low-scoring contest, but Buehler was brilliant in blanking the Blue Jays over his seven frames and was unlucky not to get his 11th win of the season. It was a nice bounce-back effort from the 25-year-old after the Marlins knocked him around for five earned runs in his last start. Buehler continues to enjoy a standout season, as he now has a 3.16 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 174:26 K:BB across 148.1 innings.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-9%
BAA vs LHP
2019
 
 
-10%
BAA vs LHP
2018
 
 
-1%
BAA vs RHP
2017
 
 
-53%
BAA vs LHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .202 580 170 39 108 20 2 13
Since 2017vs Right .221 602 167 32 123 20 2 17
2019vs Left .211 300 86 16 59 11 2 7
2019vs Right .235 297 88 10 66 11 2 9
2018vs Left .193 261 77 20 46 9 0 6
2018vs Right .192 280 74 17 49 8 0 6
2017vs Left .188 19 7 3 3 0 0 0
2017vs Right .400 25 5 5 8 1 0 2
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-45%
ERA at Home
2019
 
 
-51%
ERA at Home
2018
 
 
-44%
ERA at Home
2017
 
 
-44%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2017Home 2.22 0.85 158.1 9 3 0 10.8 1.5 0.9
Since 2017Away 4.02 1.22 136.2 10 5 0 9.7 3.0 1.0
2019Home 2.13 0.81 80.1 5 0 0 11.4 0.8 0.9
2019Away 4.37 1.26 68.0 5 3 0 9.5 2.5 1.1
2018Home 1.93 0.83 74.2 4 3 0 10.1 1.9 0.7
2018Away 3.45 1.12 62.2 4 2 0 9.6 3.0 0.9
2017Home 10.80 2.40 3.1 0 0 0 10.8 8.1 2.7
2017Away 6.00 1.83 6.0 1 0 0 12.0 7.5 1.5
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Stat Review
How does Walker Buehler compare to other starting pitchers?
This section compares his stats with all starting pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 120 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.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against this season's data (min 70 IP). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • K/BB
    Strikeout to walk ratio.
  • K/9
    Average strikeouts per nine innings.
  • BB/9
    Average walks per nine innings.
  • HR/9
    Average home runs allowed per nine innings.
  • Fastball
    Average fastball velocity.
  • ERA
    Earned run average. The average earned runs allowed per nine innings.
  • WHIP
    Walks plus hits per inning pitched.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many balls in play against a pitcher go for hits.
  • GB/FB
    Groundball to flyball ratio. The higher the number, the more likely a pitcher is to induce groundballs.
  • Left On Base
    The percentage of base runners that a pitcher strands on base over the course of a season.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Barrels/BBE
    The percentage of batted ball events resulting in a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
  • Spin Rate
    Spin Rate is the rate of spin on a baseball after it is released. It is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm).
  • Balls Hit 95+ MPH
    The percentage of batted balls hit that met or exceeded the 95 MPH threshold.
  • Swinging Strike
    The percentage of pitches that result in a swing and a miss.
K/BB
6.69
 
K/9
10.6
 
BB/9
1.6
 
HR/9
1.0
 
Fastball
96.6 mph
 
ERA
3.16
 
WHIP
1.02
 
BABIP
.309
 
GB/FB
1.36
 
Left On Base
68.4%
 
Exit Velocity
89.3 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
5.2%
 
Spin Rate
2575 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
37.0%
 
Swinging Strike
12.7%
 
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Defensive Stats
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Walker Buehler
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Christopher Olson delivers his recommendations for a winning lineup Wednesday.
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5 days ago
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7 days ago
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Oak's Corner: Looking Ahead to 2020; Focusing on 2019
8 days ago
With just six weeks left in the season, Scott Jenstad offers his best guess as to what the 2020 first round ADP will look like, with the third spot going to the Brewers’ Christian Yelich.
Farm Futures: September Callup Candidates
9 days ago
James Anderson profiles every potentially relevant September callup, including Kyle Tucker, who has been worse in a repeat tour of the Pacific Coast League.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
The 2016 season ended with whispers and a five-inning sample that suggested Buehler could be in for a breakout 2017. He delivered on that promise, and then some. Buehler, who underwent Tommy John surgery after being selected with the No. 24 pick in the 2015 draft, returned at the end of 2016 throwing harder than ever, sitting in the mid-90s and touching 99 mph with his fastball -- a byproduct of the Dodgers’ weighted ball program. He maintained that velocity over his first full pro season while also showing off a plus-plus curveball and hard low-90s cutter/slider. That pitch mix was predictably deadly against minor-league hitters, catapulting Buehler to the majors for a September run as a reliever. Given Buehler’s velocity jump and injury history, he seems a bit riskier than other top pitching prospects, but his upside is undeniable. The Dodgers will likely allow him to throw around 135 innings this season, presumably beginning the year at Triple-A. If he shows improved control, he could spend most of the summer pitching every fifth day in the big leagues.
The Dodgers took a calculated gamble when they selected Buehler with the 24th overall pick in the 2015 draft. Once considered a likely top-10 pick, a pre-draft elbow issue caused him to fall, and he ended up needing Tommy John surgery that August. Buehler returned to the mound late last season, and while he only logged five innings of game action, the early returns suggest the Dodgers may have hit big on their roll of the dice. He touched 99 mph with his fastball in instructs after sitting in the mid-90s during brief appearances in the Arizona and Midwest leagues. It is hard to expect him to maintain that velocity over lengthier outings in the coming years, but even if he settles in at 93-95 mph with his fastball, that makes for a plus offering. He also features a potentially plus curveball and a hard slider/cutter that could be a third plus pitch. An average changeup could round out the repertoire, and at that point Buehler would look the part of a No. 2 starter.
The team's top draft pick in the 2015 amateur draft (24th overall), Buehler dropped a bit down teams' boards due to an elbow injury last spring, and the injury ultimately led to Tommy John surgery this past August. When healthy, the 6-foot-2 Buehler features a mid-90s fastball, slider, curve, and changeup with solid command and the ability to miss bats. Buehler's last 14 starts for Vanderbilt resulted in an 81:25 K:BB over 78.2 innings. He seems likely to miss most, if not all of the 2016 season recuperating, but it is possible he could join a full-season affiliate late in the year, or he could pitch in the Arizona Fall League. Once healthy, he has the ability to move quickly as a college draftee and settle in as a No. 3 big league starter. He's won a College World Series and a Cape Cod Championship, a pedigree that the Dodgers certainly hope carries over.
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Hit hard by Marlins
PLos Angeles Dodgers
August 15, 2019
Buehler (10-3) allowed five earned runs on five hits and three walks while striking out six across four innings to take the loss Thursday against the Marlins.
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Whiffs eight in no-decision
PLos Angeles Dodgers
August 10, 2019
Buehler did not factor into the decision during Friday's loss despite holding the Diamondbacks scoreless with eight strikeouts over six innings. He allowed four hits and three walks.
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Whiffs 15 in complete game
PLos Angeles Dodgers
August 3, 2019
Buehler (10-2) allowed one run on six hits while striking out 15 in a complete-game win over the Padres on Saturday.
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Struggles in loss
PLos Angeles Dodgers
July 28, 2019
Buehler (9-2) gave up seven runs (four earned) on eight hits and three walks while striking out six through 5.1 innings to take the loss against the Nationals on Sunday.
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Fans 11 in seven dominant innings
PLos Angeles Dodgers
July 21, 2019
Buehler (9-1) tossed seven shutout innings to earn the win Sunday against the Marlins, allowing five hits with no walks and 11 strikeouts.
ANALYSIS
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