Every Friday I look at every projected two-start pitcher for the week ahead and detail my thoughts about rolling with them on your roster. There are four tiers: Definitely, Probably, Questionable, Bench. Definitely Start features starters that are no doubters for the week ahead followed by Probably Start with pitchers that look like good plays but may create a hesitation or two. Players labeled as Questionable are for deeper leagues or have one-of-two outings that should be skipped. Pitchers under Bench should be avoided despite their two starts in the week ahead.
Carlos Martinez (@CIN, PHI)
Chris Archer (CHW, OAK)
Jacob deGrom (@TEX, @ATL)
James Paxton (MIN, TOR)
Jeff Samardzija (@MIL, MIN)
Jake Arrieta (MIA, COL)
Sean Manaea (TOR, @TBR)
Max Scherzer (@LAD, TEX)
Drew Pomeranz (@NYY, DET) – These are two tough matchups for Pomeranz, though he’s been on a tear lately. Even if he doesn’t match his recent his recent performances, you’ll still be able to salvage strikeouts making it a worthwhile gamble.
Aaron Nola (@ATL, @STL) – Yes, he hasn’t looked hot in his last two starts. It’s not enough to prevent me from throwing him out there against two below average offenses – especially the Freeman-less Braves.
Adam Wainwright (@CIN, PHI) – Wainwright has been stellar in his last four starts as his Cutter has increased its vertical drop. Pair that with a matchup against the Phillies and I’m willing to throw the die against the Reds.
Ivan Nova (@BAL, MIA) – Not my favorite pick and it could wind up not in your favor. Still a good option given his high floor.
J.A. Happ (@OAK, @SEA) – Happ is back from the DL and gets two great matchups, as the Mariners don’t like lefties one bit.
Justin Verlander (LAA, @BOS) – Yes, his rebound game against the Royals wasn’t the kind of dominance we wanted to see from Verlander, but you can’t turn away a start against the Angels from Jimmy V, even if the Sawx follow.
Gio Gonzalez (@LAD, TEX) – Not loving a date with the Dodgers, though the Rangers have a better chance for production and the Nationals could award Gio two Wins.
Chase Anderson (SFG, @ARI) – Anderson is a hot-and-cold pitcher who could return at least one solid outing for your squad.
Dan Straily (@CHC, @PIT) – You don’t know what to expect from Straily on a given night and it could go very south against the Cubs. Or he could explode for double digit strikeouts again.
Dinelson Lamet (@ARI, KCR) – Lamet has displayed legitimate strikeout ability and is a great play against the Royals, but an evening in Coors Lite could spell trouble.
Joe Musgrove (@KCR, LAA) – Musgrove is returning from missing his last start and couldn’t find himself paired up against two worse offenses.
Jharel Cotton (TOR, @TBR) – There’s plenty of upside in Cotton, but there is plenty of risk starting him against the Jays armed with Donaldson + a hot Bautista.
Masahiro Tanaka (BOS, BAL) – It’s a tough time to be a Tanaka owner and it’s possible he breaks out of his funk this week, it’s also possible he struggles to rebound.
Junior Guerra (SFG, @ARI) – Guerra had a solid outing against the Mets and could carry it over to the Giants. Be wary of his start in Arizona.
Jose Quintana (@TBR, @CLE) – Quintana has seen better days and these matchups could help him get out of his rut.
Kevin Gausman (PIT, @NYY) – It’s hard to trust Gausman much these days with his lost Fastball command, though a start against the Pirates is tantalizing.
Jaime Garcia (PHI, NYM) – While I don’t expect his run to last, it’s fathomable Garcia is able to be serviceable as he faces two poor offenses. He’s on the border of tiers three and four.
Bartolo Colon (PHI, NYM) – Despite the excellent matchups, I don’t want to be trusting Colon on any given evening.
Hyun-Jin Ryu (WSH, CIN) – It’s unclear if he gets the second start of the week, but I wouldn’t want to roll with Ryu against these tough teams.
Ian Kennedy (HOU, @SDP) – The Astros are on fire and Kennedy isn’t in a groove to make me risk that start for the Padres.
Antonio Senzatela (CLE, @CHC) – I wouldn’t mind putting Senz-a in the third tier if he weren’t faced with two difficult evenings.
Eddie Butler (MIA, COL) – There isn’t enough upside for me to trust Butler on a given night, let alone facing the Rockies.
Hector Santiago (@SEA, @SFG) – Santiago hasn’t been a good option for a long time.
Jeff Locke (@CHC, @PIT) – Locke is just…just don’t.
Jesse Chavez (@DET, @HOU) – Chavez is a risky play on any evening, especially against the Tigers and Astros.
Matt Cain (@MIL, MIN) – Cain is way too volatile to roll him out there twice.
Mike Fiers (@KCR, LAA) – These matchups are great, but Fiers lacks both the consistency and upside to make him a good choice.
Tim Adleman (STL, @LAD) – Adleman isn’t fantasy relevant.
Mystery Reds Starter (STL, @LAD) – With Amir Garrett on the DL, the Reds need a fifth starter and it’s unclear who will start on Monday and Saturday. Whoever it is, I wouldn’t be trusting them.
Minor correction: I think Verlander got bumped up to this Saturday, so he may only be a one-start pitcher next week against the Red Sox. Would you bench him in that case? I also personally have the option of starting Nola instead
Thanks for the heads up!
I’d start Nola over Verlander.
Would you rather have Tanaka or Harvey ROS?
So basically I’m going to have like 30 starts next week. Sweet. (Points league).
Yahoo lists Greinke as Tuesday and Sunday (vs SD, vs MIL). I can’t imagine not starting him, but would you rate him a “definitely” or a “probably”?
He’s a definite.