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: 57-42
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Some doubted that I would even put out this table, but there is value in knowing if I adore these two pitchers squaring off tonight or not. The answer is…probably not.
It isn’t even confirmed if Jordan Montgomery is actually starting for the Yankees and if he does, the Red Sox are a strong team that can punish a manager trusting JorMont this early in an 11 (10) day fantasy week. Still, I won’t ignore the strikeout upside The Bear possesses if you want to go down that road.
- Update: It’s now Domingo Germán getting the ball for the Yankees instead of Jordan Montgomery. I have similar concerns with German and wouldn’t be taking the gamble with him against the Red Sox.
- Meanwhile, the DaBelleOfDaBall is Eduardo Rodriguez as his fastball command has been plenty better across the last month. He doesn’t have his changeup back, though, and this should be a laborious start on his end as well. I’m personally avoiding both of these starts in my 12-teamers.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Before we begin, I’m writing this Thursday morning as I wanted to wait as long as I could for confirmed Friday starters and…nope. About half of the names here are not certain to start and check back Friday morning for a more accurate table. It’s just the nature of the All-Star Break and you would be wise to stay up on it a little more frequently than usual.
- Also, please don’t judge me when I have the wrong pitcher listed. You rock.
- Lots of aces are going as teams are able to reset their rotations for the second half. I imagine there will be few contentions here, though some may hesitate to start Lucas Giolito against Houston and Walker Buehler in Coors. These guys are aces, start them regardless of the situation.
- I elected to sneak in Luis Castillo at the end of this one as he squares up against Milwaukee. I think he’s done enough with his heater and slider to deserve your trust, even if his changeup hasn’t whiffed as many as we’d expect as of late.
- Yes, I bumped Lance McCullers to the second tier given the strength of the ChiSox lineup + he hasn’t truly blossomed into an ace yet – his curveball wasn’t there last time and he’s not one to consistently hint at seven frames. I’d still start him, he just doesn’t come with the same confidence of those in tier one.
- I’d love to see another dominating start from Kenta Maeda as he’s looked excellent across his last two outings. I’m being patient until I see the third outing to confirm his trend, but all signs are pointing toward dominance, especially against the Tigers.
- The final four of this tier are all familiar names who do little to excite fantasy managers, but should be leaned on for their outings. Adam Wainwright has done marvelous work this season and the Giants, despite having a surprising amount of offensive success this year, aren’t enough to warrant a bench.
- A start for Zach Eflin against the Marlins is a pretty clear option. There’s a chance he fizzles, while his ceiling could be hit with effective sliders and curves while he spots sinkers.
- In the third tier, despite facing the lackluster Mariners, Andrew Heaney has showcased himself as the quintessential Cherry Bomb this year, making this start a risky proposition.
- We haven’t seen a good version of Chris Paddack for a few starts now and a repeat against the Nationals may prove difficult to rebound.
- It’s unclear what we’ll see of Danny Duffy, who had a small step back in velocity to 93 mph after sitting 94/95 mph previously. Mix in a vague pitch count (will they let him go 90 pitches) and an Orioles offense that has crushed lefties and you have yourself an anxiety-filled option.
- The streaming pick of the day is once again Merrill Kelly, who has been a worthy dice roll multiple times across the last month. The Cubs are not a team to fear, either, and this could work well in your favor.
- In the final tier, Jameson Taillon leads the way as I’m too concerned about the Red Sox squad. He’s tweaked his approach a bit as of late – sinkers/sliders to right-handers, four-seamer/curve to lefties – and I’m not sure it’s enough to combat Boston’s bats.
- We saw Michael Wacha have his best changeup a week ago but it’s a poor wager to imagine it’ll earn double-digit whiffs for the second straight start.
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