The List 3/13: Spring Training Update Of The Top 100 Starting Pitchers

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It has now been over a month since I revealed my Top 100 Starters for 2017 and, simply put, stuff has happened. Injuries have arisen, returning stars haven’t impressed, rotations have changed, or perhaps I’ve reassessed my stance on guys independent of their spring activities. Now that it’s draft season, I want to tweak my rankings a bit and solidify who I’m favoring over who as you dive through the rounds. Let’s do it.



Notes

  • Obviously Alex Reyes has been removed as he’ll be getting TJS. Bummer. Luke Weaver gets a firm spot in the Top 100 now with a better chance at earning a hefty amount of starts across 2017.
  • Anthony DeSclafani has flown back to Cincinnati for an MRI due to pain in his elbow. There is no way this ends well and he’s been removed from The List. Double bummer.
  • With all signs pointing to Robert Gsellman earning the fifth spot in the rotation and Zack Wheeler having a slow spring than expected, Gsellman gets a huge bump, essentially taking Wheeler’s spot in the initial rankings.
  • I expected Matt Harvey to have a better showing in the spring, but his velocity has been unimpressive and it’s hard for me to sit here with my bold Top 20 spot from last time. I wanted to believe, but now he’s at the back-end of the same tier.
  • 200 innings of Michael Fulmer seems a lot more appealing these days than assuredly fewer innings from James Paxton and Steven Matzgiving the 2016 ROY a small bump.
  • The more I consider Carlos Martinezthe more I see a breakout from him and have myself taking him above Masahiro Tanaka in drafts.
  • I have become a major fan of Matt Andriese in the past month, given his minute walk rates and strikeout potential with a massive vertical drop differentiation between his Fastball and Changeup. I’m not expecting the world, but he belongs in the sneaky upside tier.
  • With Julio Urias slatted to head to extended spring training, it’s hard to justify him coming off the board before a sturdy arm like Jerad EickhoffMeanwhile, teammate Alex Wood looks to be earning a spot on the Dodgers staff, who brings intriguing upside to the table.
  • With the way Eduardo Rodriguez is pitching mixed with David Price’s unknown status with his “unique elbow”, both Red Sox pitchers are trending in different directions, with Eduardo heading to the 70s and Price to the 20s.
  • I’m giving Dylan Bundy a little extra love as it came out that he’ll be reintroducing his Cutter back into the mix, a pitch that was previously heralded as the deadliest offering in his repertoire.
  • Sonny Gray is sidelined with a lat-strain that will keep him out until late April, pushing him down the ranks.
  • Zack Greinke is showing sub 90mph velocity thus far in the spring and while there’s time to ramp it back up, it’s hard not to dock him a few points given he already has a tough hill to climb at his atrocious 2016 season.
  • I’m more and more encouraged about Daniel Norris’ increased velocity from the end of 2016 as he’s been pushed to the early 60s.
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Nick Pollack

Founder
Founder of both PitcherList.com and PitcherGIFs.com. Rotographs and Washington Post contributor and has worked with CBS Sports, Grantland, and SB Nation. Former pitching coach and Brandeis alum.

15 Responses to “The List 3/13: Spring Training Update Of The Top 100 Starting Pitchers”

  1. The Stanley Goodspeeds

    Excellent update! Burning keeper question involving a top 11 arm from your list: Yu Darvish.

    12 team H2H Categories (6×6 Standard but OPS) league, keep 6. Debating my final keeper between: a 9th rd Darvish, 25th rd Dahl or 6th rd Britton. Other keepers include: Arenado, Rizzo, Marte, Odor, Villar.

    Pitching depth available in the draft will likely be Arrieta onward, although a few cheap SPs will also likely be kept (Duffy, Nola, Quintana). Top RPs likely kept will be Jansen & Chapmon.

    My gut says Darvish but my heart says Dahl (even with the injury). Thoughts?

    Keep up the great work!

    Reply
    • Nick Pollack

      Considering the lack of SP options, you need to secure Darvish at the 9th round price. That’s a sturdy six man squad heading into your season and you don’t want to feel behind in pitching with that offense.

      Reply
  2. Chuck

    Nice Update, thanks. Michael Wacha, not rated top 100? Heres a guy who won 17 games just two seasons ago. Hes 25, and seemingly healthy. If we can give a rating to Grienke, why not Wacha?

    Reply
    • Nick Pollack

      Thanks!

      Because Greinke has a much longer history of being great without the A) risk of being sent to the pen and B) the horrid injury history Wacha has had.

      I really don’t want to go after Wacha in a 12-teamer where he could easily give a mediocre season that hurts my team more than helps or doesn’t even get a heavy dosage of starts.

      That being said, Wacha is one of the closest to being on this List that isn’t and could find his way on it in the next month.

      Reply
  3. Josh

    Hey Nick, big fan of your work. Wondering why Wainwright isn’t cracking the top 100. I know he looked bad last year but he was also coming back from injury. Seems like the Cardinals are pretty high on him and he’s been pitching pretty well in spring training. I’m not saying he should be high on the list but I’d rather have him and his upside than Reynaldo Lopez.

    Reply
    • Nick Pollack

      Thanks Josh!

      Good question and I completely understand that.

      The way I see it, I think it will be hard for me at a given point during this season to have a good amount of faith starting Wainwright on a game-to-game basis. There’s a ton of concern with his Fastball and overall I think he will hurt your team more than help.

      With Reynaldo, there’s some time before he gets into the groove, but I can see him being more of a stable asset by the mid-point than Wainwright and be a more believable streamer in my eye. There’s more upside in Lopez than Wainwright at this point in my view.

      Reply
      • Josh

        Thanks for the thoughtful response! Really do love your stuff, you had me on the Shoemaker, Porcello, Fulmer, Paxton train last year and they carried me. Looking forward to reading pitcherlist this season.

        Reply
        • Nick Pollack

          Glad to hear it Josh! Can’t wait to get going with the SP Roundups again.

          I feel like a part of me is missing during the off-season without them.

          Reply
  4. Matt Nielsen

    Hey Nick! So I currently have Wheeler in one league (don’t ask me why they drafted already) but Musgrove, Norris, and Gsellman are available. I personally feel like Norris is the guy to own out of the bunch. Obviously you have musgrove a little higher. Can I ask why?
    I also have Neris, Giles, Capps, and Barraclough. Would you drop any of them to pick up one of the guys above? Standard 5×5 league.

    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Nick Pollack

      Hey Matt! Good to see you round again.

      I really like Musgrove’s potential this season, but as of now I’m with you and would be grabbing Norris and Gsellman first for your league. They have starting spots in their rotation making them the ones to own.

      Barraclough is the one I’d drop as well to make room.

      Reply
      • Matt Nielsen

        Sweet! Thanks Nick!

        Reply
      • Matt Nielsen

        Actually one quick follow up. I’m thinking I might want to drop Rajai Davis instead of a pitcher as I have plenty of speed. If that were the case, would you hang on to Wheeler or Barraclough?

        Reply
  5. Dan

    Hey Nick, huge fan. Ed Rodriguez or Folty in a 12 teamer dynasty for my high upside no cost pitcher to hang onto? Speaking of high upside, no cost…is Ryu droppable or can he turn it around?

    Reply

Comments