With the 2021 season, I’m changing how I’m doing my starting pitcher streamers and daily matchup rankings
Instead of being featured in the SP Roundup, I’ll be highlighting my SP streamer picks for today and tomorrow inside this article, while also introducing four tiers and adding notes to each table.
The four tiers are as follows:
Auto-Start – Just do it. Don’t overthink this, start the man.
Probably Start – I’m likely starting these arms, though I recognize there is more risk than we’d like there to be. Either it’s a tough matchup for a good pitcher or a weak lineup for a volatile arm.
Questionable Start – There are situations where I’d take the chance, either with strong enough upside on the ability side, or a poor offense that a pitcher could take advantage of.
Do Not Start – The reward is not worth the risk. Don’t do it.
Obviously, there will be circumstances where pitchers should move between teams for your situation specifically and these new tiers should act as a little more help than the straight table from last year.
Please keep in mind that streaming is far from a perfect play. In fact, if they work out over half the time, I’d consider it a success. These matchup rankings & streamer picks are going to be wildly different than the actual results through the year, so please, have sympathy before the scathing comments and tweets. I’m only trying to help!
Make sure to read the notes if you’re wondering why I’m favoring certain pitchers over others – I won’t get to everyone and hopefully I answer what questions you will have.
There is a second table for tomorrow’s starting pitcher matchups as well, helping everyone get a jump on their nightly pickups. Please note that these matchups are subject to change, though, and there will be times when I have the incorrect pitcher going. I thank you for your future understanding.
Finally, I have highlighted in Green my streaming pick of the day – Yellow if I wouldn’t actually want to stream them (I have to pick one every day!) . These are defined as “rostered in 20% or fewer leagues,” which really emphasizes the point that I’d be happy if over 50% of these worked. I could do the whole sub 30/40% rostered, but there’s no fun in that. You can use the rankings to realize who would be those picks, instead.
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s lovely to see young arms Joe Musgrove and Tyler Mahle get comfortable outings against the Rangers and Diamondbacks. Here’s to their early runs continuing on Friday.
- I considered putting Corey Kluber in the second tier, but if you’re restoring Kluber, there’s little reason not to start him against the middling Rays.
- There is no second tier today. I will not compromise my ranks just for the sake of having one. You’re welcome.
- I shuffled the order of the third tier a few times. Leading off is Andrew Heaney, who displayed his volatility inside his first start, looking dominant early and falling apart later. Proceed with caution, but if you need the strikeouts, they’ll be there.
- Steven Matz looked great in his first outing and now has a challenge against the Angels. I can see it working out – especially if Ohtani isn’t hitting.
- My official Streaming Pick of the Day is Johnny Cueto, surprisingly enough. He’ll be allowed to go 100 pitches and gets Rockie Road. It’s the combination you want for someone that has just enough stuff in his arsenal to make it work.
- It’s a bit tempting to give Taylor Widener a spin after last week’s outing against the Padres, though the Reds are hot and it’s a risk I’m not sure I’m willing to take.
- Yes, Julio Teheran is in the third tier as well. I know, I know, but Cleveland is struggling and Teheran will be able to throw plenty of pitches. Something to consider.
|1||Walker Buehler||vs. WSH|
|2||Zach Plesac||vs. DET|
|3||Zack Wheeler||@ ATL|
|4||Joe Musgrove||@ TEX|
|5||Tyler Mahle||@ ARI|
|6||Lance McCullers Jr.||vs. OAK|
|7||Charlie Morton||vs. PHI|
|8||Corey Kluber||@ TBR|
|9||Andrew Heaney||@ TOR|
|10||Steven Matz||vs. LAA|
|11||Johnny Cueto||vs. COL|
|12||Sean Manaea||@ HOU|
|13||Taylor Widener||vs. CIN|
|14||Austin Gomber||@ SFG|
|15||Julio Teheran||@ CLE|
|Do Not Start|
|16||Kohei Arihara||vs. SDP|
|17||Rich Hill||vs. NYY|
|18||Joe Ross||@ LAD|
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s a small Tier 1, but you should feel very comfortable will all these arms, even Ian Anderson going against the solid Phillies lineup. He’s done nothing but produce.
- And yes, I’m excited to watch more Jacob deGrom. How could you not be?
- The Twitch chat debated about Urquidy vs. Pineda and it’s a close call. You should feel confident with both and I’m leaning Jose Urquidy based on the high pitch count from his first start + deeper repertoire than Michael Pineda.
- Even though he struggled with his heater in his first start, you should still throw Chris Paddack out there against the Rangers. I’d be surprised if Paddack didn’t figure out his four-seamer through the season and Texas still doesn’t terrify me.
- The lines between Tier 2 and Tier 3 are closer than usual today as I heavily debated slotting Yusei Kikuchi into the third tier, even with his exciting start against San Francisco – The Twins are no joke, y’all.
- Meanwhile, kicking off Tier 3 is Carlos Martinez, whose only struggle last time was allowing too many HR to a power-heavy Reds offense. His velocity is at 94 mph and makes for a clear Streaming Pick of the Day against Milwaukee.
- Even though he gets the Mets, Trevor Rogers showcased increased velocity last start and could pull off a strong performance. There’s clear risk – it’s the third tier! – so make the play based on your situation
- The same goes for Logan Webb, who is the other side of the coin: a great matchup with Rockie Road but wasn’t at his best in game one. Take the chance if you need it.
- I’d love to put Mike Minor and Frankie Montas in the second tier, but they are both going against strong offenses in the White Sox and Astros. Their ability suggests better ranks in the future and they may have enough in the tank to persevere.
- Yes, Jeff Hoffman is here as the already questionable Diamondbacks crew has been weakened by the removal of Ketel Marte. His slider was great last time and hopefully he can replicate it.
|1||Jacob deGrom||vs. MIA|
|2||Julio Urias||vs. WSH|
|3||Aaron Civale||vs. DET|
|4||Ian Anderson||vs. PHI|
|5||Jose Urquidy||vs. OAK|
|6||Michael Pineda||vs. SEA|
|7||Zach Eflin||@ ATL|
|8||Domingo German||@ TBR|
|9||Zach Davies||@ PIT|
|10||Chris Paddack||@ TEX|
|11||Tarik Skubal||@ CLE|
|12||Yusei Kikuchi||@ MIN|
|13||Carlos Martinez||vs. MIL|
|14||Trevor Rogers||@ NYM|
|15||Logan Webb||vs. COL|
|16||Mike Minor||@ CHW|
|17||Frankie Montas||@ HOU|
|18||Dylan Cease||vs. KCR|
|19||Jeff Hoffman||@ ARI|
|20||Mitch Keller||vs. CHC|
|21||Garrett Richards||@ BAL|
|22||Adrian Houser||@ STL|
|23||Bruce Zimmermann||vs. BOS|
|Do Not Start|
|24||Jordan Lyles||vs. SDP|
|25||Jose Quintana||@ TOR|
|26||Chi Chi Gonzalez||@ SFG|
|27||Austin Voth||@ LAD|
|28||Chris Archer||vs. NYY|
|29||Riley Smith||vs. CIN|
|30||Tanner Roark||vs. LAA|
Photo by Samuel Stringer/Icon Sportswire | Design by Quincey Dong (@threerundong on Twitter)