(Photo by Gerry Angus/Icon Sportswire)
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.
Note: This article was written Friday morning, estimating probable starters through the week. These are subject to change.
Madison Bumgarner (@MIA, @LAD)
Patrick Corbin (PIT, NYM)
Carlos Carrasco (@CHW, MIN)
Aaron Nola (COL, @MIL)
Mike Foltynewicz (NYM, SDP)
Lance McCullers (@OAK, @KCR)
- Madison Bumgarner, Lance McCullers, and Carlos Carrasco are clear Tier 1 options this week with easy matchups and clear upside
- I understand not liking Patrick Corbin against the Pirates or wavering slightly at Aaron Nola against the Brewers, but you should have zero hesitations slotting them in your lineup this week.
- Mike Foltynewicz deserves the bump to tier 1 with two poor lineups ahead and how he’s currently feeling his slider.
Dylan Bundy (BOS, MIA)
Eduardo Rodriguez (@BAL, @SEA)
Jack Flaherty (SDP, CHC)
Andrew Heaney? (@SEA, @OAK)
- I debated if Eduardo Rodriguez belonged in Tier 1, but the Mariners offense should be considered and Erod still isn’t a Top 25 arm.
- If Andrew Heaney gets two starts – Shohei Ohtani is supposed to miss at least one turn in the rotation and is the six-man rotation still in play? – he will be one of the better plays this week
- Even with his latest struggle, I’d throw Jack Flaherty out there against the Cubs, especially if comes with a date against San Diego
- Dylan Bundy is cruising, making me okay with a start against Boston if it comes with Miami on the backend.
Jose Quintana (@MIL, @STL)
Jon Gray (@PHI, @TEX)
Junior Guerra (CHC, PHI)
Trevor Williams (@ARI, CIN)
Zack Wheeler (@ATL, @ARI)
Clay Buchholz (PIT, NYM)
Jake Odorizzi (@DET, @CLE)
Tanner Roark (@NYY, @TOR)
- The Nationals are using a four-man rotation for now, giving Tanner Roark two starts this week. He’s a tough call with the Yankee matchup, though the Blue Jays start is one I’d love to roll Roark out there for.
- A sneaky play may be Clay Buchholz against the Pirates and Mets. It’s a big risk against Pittsburgh, yet his newfound cutter could carve out a productive overall week when it includes a night against the Mets.
- I’m not a fan of normally running with Trevor Williams, though the Diamondbacks and Reds don’t scare me, and it could be serviceable.
- Jose Quintana and Jon Gray would normally be in the second tier with these matchups, but their inconsistencies this season have them as third-rate choices
- I love going with Junior Guerra against the Phillies, but the Cubs can be a difficult obstacle and lower Guerra to the Questionable tier.
- You could do worse than chasing Jake Odorizzi with a start coming against the Tigers and taking a chance on surviving the Indians.
Jordan Lyles (@STL, @ATL)
Lucas Giolito (CLE, DET)
Wei-Yin Chen (SFG, @BAL)
Sam Gaviglio (@TBR, WSH)
Wade Leblanc (LAA, BOS)
Hector Santiago (CLE, DET)
Adam Plutko (@CHW, MIN)
Steven Wright (@BAL, @SEA)
Blaine Hardy (MIN, @CHW)
Chris Stratton (@MIA, @LAD)
Trevor Richards? (SF, @BAL)
Matt Strahm (@STL, @ATL)
Chase Anderson (CHC, PHI)
CC Sabathia (WSH, TBR)
Daniel Mengden (HOU, LAA)
Mike Leake (LAA, BOS)
- Plenty of these options are #4/#5 starters and have little fantasty relevance, making them clear bottom tier options
- Mike Leake, Daniel Mengden, CC Sabathia, and even Sam Gaviglio would have been considered for the third tier, but their difficult matchups ahead force a bench this week
- I can imagine Chris Stratton squeaking out production against the Marlins and Dodgers, it’s not enough to make him any sort of target, though.
- It was a tough call for Jordan Lyles heading to the bottom tier, and in the end, I don’t think his upside for the Cardinals start is worth the low floor against the Braves
- Despite his performance last year, we can’t expect Chase Anderson to turn it around this week against the Cubs, even if the Phillies follow.