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.
2021 Streamer Record: 48-37
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s three aces + Zack Greinke on Monday, as Greinke should be trusted to produce against the Orioles. Let them all fly, even with the Bauer spin rate concerns.
- The second tier is a bit tight as well as Wade Miley is hard to turn away these days. Kyle Hendricks has been his best self as of late as well and gets a cushy date with the Brewers.
- The third kicks off with a beloved arm in Anthony DeSclafani. Some may want to trust him against the strong Dodgers crew, though Tony Disco has been a bit shaky against strong offenses before. It’s up to you as you start your week.
- Matt Manning is the streaming option for Monday as he’s essentially a Toby these days. That works against a mediocre lineup in Cleveland.
- It’s been better for Kenta Maeda lately, but he’s faced two weak offenses and hasn’t had both his splitter and slider working in either. Now against a strong ChiSox crew, it’s a gamble if he’ll pull through.
- I was tempted to place Danny Duffy in the thrid tier, but he tossed under 50 in his return from the IL + he came in relief on Friday for another 15. Don’t be alarmed at the relief appearance – I’m assuming it was his bullpen day and they elected to use it to get more pitches in game – but it does mean Duffy still has a limited pitch count. I’d avoid for just one more start.
- I wouldn’t be touching Garrett Richards or Dylan Bundy at the moment. They are both far away from their best selves.
- Eli Morgan had a wonderful changeup last time out and it could return this time out against the Tigers. The floor has been established incredibly low and I’d proceed with heavy caution.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- More of the same in the top tier as Kevin Gausman and Walker Buehler are still clear plays despite tougher matchups. Gausman’s splitter is just that filthy and Beuhler’s four-seamer sets a beautiful foundation for production.
- Charlie Morton and José Urquidy sneak in at the bottom as they have favorable matchups and are certainly capable of taking advantage. If you’re rostering them, you’re absolutely starting them.
- In the second tier, I completely grasp hesitation with Dylan Cease as he gets the Twins. He’s fallen a bit out of his slider command as of late and it may linger against a Minnesota lineup who can punish mistakes. The season-long track record is too much to ignore, though.
- Rich Hill hasn’t been at his peak lately, though the Nationals aren’t scary and Hill can easily power through another 5+ innings to boost your numbers early in the week.
- The streaming pick of the day is Joe Ross as he meets the Rays in D.C. Ross has displayed the ability to go deep into games when his slider is working and the only hesitation is if he can command that sweeper for a full game. Let’s hope he can.
- Speaking of wishes, Blake Snell could use a few pennies in the well as he aims to repeat his dominance from last week against the Dodgers. However, pitching in Cincinnati is no easy feat, and he still carries the dreaded Cherry Bomb label. Be careful.
- I would love to feel confident in Caleb Smith against the Cardinals, but he’s still struggling to find his slider and changeup + he’s fluctuated between 90-92 mph a bit too much. The Cards have been terrible, so he gets the third-tier spot for now.
- Last outing was one of Nick Pivetta’s best as he looked smooth at times with four-seamers up and breakers down. It rarely comes with consistency through the entire start, though, and it’s still a coin flip if we’ll get 5-6 productive frames, even against the Royals.
- I’m excited to see more of Tony Santillan, though I’m disappointed to see it’ll be against the Padres. Too much risk for this old man.
- The same goes for Tylor Megill, who gets a date with Atlanta and I’d rather not take the chance.
Photo by Tom Hagerty | Design by Quincey Dong (@threerundong on Twitter)