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. The first tier features starters that are no doubters for the week ahead followed by a tier of pitchers that look like good plays but may create a hesitation or two. Players inside Questionable Starts are for deeper leagues or have one-of-two outings that should be avoid. Pitchers labeled Bench should be avoided despite their dual week ahead.
Zack Greinke (LAD, @PHI)
David Price (BAL, SEA)
Carlos Carrasco (@KCR, CWS)
Jacob DeGrom (PIT, ATL)
Drew Pomeranz (MIA, WSH)
Max Scherzer (CHC, @SDP)
Yu Darvish (@OAK, @STL)
Julio Teheran (CIN, @NYM) – Teheran has been on fire and gets a pair of great matchups to express his upside.
Kyle Hendricks (@WSH, PIT) – Hendricks is looking great in 2016 and these opponents shouldn’t sway you from his abilities.
Gio Gonzalez (CHC, @SDP) – Gio had a rough stretch but looks to be on the other side of it. His start against the Cubs isn’t ideal, but he should excel against the Padres, making this a good choice.
Kenta Maeda (@ARI, MIL) – Maeda has been finicky this season, though his good floor should make him a solid option despite heading to Chase Field.
Jordan Zimmermann (@CWS, @KCR) – JZ has slowed down from his blazing start the season, but these teams don’t pose enough of a threat to decline on his two starts.
Wei-Yin Chen (@SDP, COL) – It hasn’t been a fun year for Chen thus far, but he gets the Padres in Petco and a Rockies team that holds a below average wOBA on the road.
Taijuan Walker (@TBR, @BOS) – That Red Sox start is not looking pretty, yet Walker looked as good as ever last time out and gets a solid matchup against the Rays.
Edinson Volquez (CLE, DET) – Volquez has been pretty meh for the last month, though there is enough upside to consider Volquez if you need the two starts in a 12 teamer.
Chris Tillman (@BOS, TOR) – Tillman has been looking great recently, yet he faces two tough opponents this week.
Julio Urias (@ARI, MIL) – There is some worry that he won’t get both starts given how the Dodgers have expressed they are going to bounce him back forth between the rotation and bullpen this season. If he does get the call, I think he’ll begin to come into his own, especially against the Brewers.
Ervin Santana (@LAA, NYY) – Santana wouldn’t be considered if it weren’t for a pair of below average offenses. Despite not bringing the strikeouts he’s capable of in his recent outings, there is a shot he can provide sneaky value against these opponents.
Nathan Eovaldi (@COL, @MIN) – That start in Colorado is mighty frightening, though he should be considered for his date with the Twins.
Marcus Stroman (PHI, @BAL) – Sure, he’s been struggling mightily lately, but he’s also faced a good number of tough opponents. His matchup vs. the Phils should be beneficial enough to roll with him.
Jerad Eickhoff (@TOR, ARI) – Keep in mind, Velasquez was set for a two start week, making his mystery replacement (Zach Eflin?) a candidate for your roster. Anyway, Eickhoff looked much better last week but it’s tough to endorse him now against a pair of above-average offenses.
Jered Weaver (MIN, @OAK) – Don’t care Weaver. He could be starting against two AAA teams and I wouldn’t do it.
Matt Boyd (@CWS, @KCR) – You can do worse than Boyd, though he floor is too low to make him a decent option against the ChiSox and Royals.
James Shields (DET, @CLE) – Shields is as cold as we’ve ever seen a pitcher, and there’s not reason to think he’ll recover in a big way against the Tigers and Indians.
Yordano Ventura (CLE, DET) – Yordano will most likely miss at least one of these starts as he was suspended for nine games and will appeal to drag it out. Either way, don’t start Ventura and I doubt the hypothetical replacement would break out of the Bench tier.
Aaron Blair (CIN, @NYM) – The matchups dictate a better tier, but the pitcher does not. Blair doesn’t have the upside that would allow you to toss him out there twice in one week. I can see someone desperate pulling the trigger, but I would advise against it in the heavy majority of situations.
Alfredo Simon (@ATL, @HOU) – Despite the decent matchup against the Braves, Simon is too poor of a pitcher to run with.
Brandon Finnegan (@ATL, @HOU) – I almost elevated Finnegan to the next tier, but I’m not sold his walk issues are gone after just one game despite getting the Braves in Turner Field.
Tom Koehler (@SDP, COL) – Not the worst matchups, but you really don’t want to put your faith in Tommy.
Chase Anderson (@SFG, @LAD) – He has been productive his last few outings though he now shifts from weak opponents to the fearsome Giants and I’m staying away.
Jimmy Nelson (@SFG, @LAD) – Nelson has been staggering in his last few outings despite facing below average offenses. I don’t trust him to recover against two good west coast teams.
Ricky Nolasco (@LAA, NYY) – Nolasco simply isn’t skilled enough to make you feel good despite getting the Angels and Yanks.
Jesse Hahn (TEX, LAA) – Hahn has looked lost in the past weeks, making that Texas matchup a scary premonition.
Francisco Liriano (@NYM, @CHC) – Liriano can outright ruin your week with just one bad start, and that date with Chicago doesn’t look pretty.
Colin Rea (MIA, WSH) – Rea doesn’t have the upside to make his reward worth the risk.
Albert Suarez (MIL, @TBR) – Despite the decent matchups, Suarez is a low strikeout guy that isn’t a good enough finesse pitcher to trust for a good week.
Wade Miley (@TBR, @BOS) – Miley had a good rebound last time out, though it’s not enough to remove the memory of his prior horrific three game stretch where he allowed 18 ER in 14.2 IP.
Matt Moore (SEA, SFG) – Moore has come up empty-handed for owners hoping to cash in on his upside. Don’t expect it to return this week.
Martin Perez (@OAK, @STL) – Not the worst possible stream with Perez in Oakland, but that start against St. Louis makes this an easy call.
R.A. Dickey (PHI, @BAL) – Wright is the only knuckleballer that is worth trusting these days.