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, there are my streaming picks of the day, and please keep in mind that I am forced to pick a streamer every day. Those highlighted in Green are in the second tier and I’d roll with them everywhere. The most common are those in Yellow in the third tier and should be decent if you’re searching for something on a given day. Finally, those are Red are those I really don’t want to start (they are labeled as “Do Not Start”, after all) but have no other choice. Don’t stream these guys until you are truly desperate. A streaming pick is 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: 91-72
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Keep in mind, Dylan Cease is now slated to start for the White Sox on Friday, so make sure he’s in your lineup. This may be a huge impact play for your weekend.
- Corbin Burnes could be moving up to Friday’s start (It seems like Eric Lauer is the starter, but weirder things have happened) and you obviously can’t miss that start against the Mets. Not a chance. Just put him in your lineup just in case.
- After the rainout yesterday, Sonny Gray is now pitching on Friday, when he’ll square off against the Nationals. Following a string of five 2 ER or fewer starts, Gray faced the Dodgers and was a touch worse all around. Don’t discredit him a ton and let him start against the mediocre Washington lineup.
- Don’t overlook Nathan Eovaldi shifting to Friday’s spot as well and I’d let him fly against the Yankees. There’s a bit more volatility in this outcome, but given how well his curveball has performed all year, I’d have faith he helps more than hurts.
- In the third tier, there’s a chance Ryan Yarbrough is sitting on your wire and could be a great play as he faces the Marlins. He currently holds a 31% rostership rate and may open the door for a smooth stream to kick off the weekend.
- The real streaming pick of the day is José Suarez as he gets the Mariners. Suarez has a 21% SwStr changeup paired with a 35% CSW curveball he’s able to land for called strikes. It paves the way for production against a pedestrian Mariners lineup.
- Many managers dropped Carlos Hernández after his cataclysmic start last time out, but he could bounce back against the Tigers. I prefer the two above when scouring the wire, though Carlos could come through with his 96+ heater and pair of whiffable breakers.
- I’m excited to watch the return of both Jack Flaherty and Shane Bieber from their extended IL trips, though it doesn’t mean you have to play them in your lineups. I expect Bieber to go longer than Flaherty, but he gets the tougher matchup & we just don’t know if they are in rhythm yet. Be cautious here.
- In the final tier, there are very few options. J.A. Happ gets the Cubs in the most acceptable option of the tier with the ability to earn a Win and survive against the Cubs, but don’t look down: his floor is as terrifying as they come.
- Some may be tempted to go for Tony Gonsolin against the Diamondbacks, yet I’m staying away after his recent poor relief appearance. I don’t anticipate a lengthy outing and it’s no lock the innings he does toss will be of quality.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- These schedules keep changing on us and it’s important to monitor the shifts for the weekend ahead. The top tier isn’t a whole lot different, though, save for Shane McClanahan going a day earlier against the Marlins. You better make sure he’s in that lineup.
- I can see some worrying about Huascar Ynoa against the Padres after his last outing. His fastball/combination has been excellent all year and I would be surprised if they didn’t pull him to the finish line with ease.
- In the second tier, place Eric Lauer after Framber Valdez if he winds up going Saturday instead of Friday.
- Framber Valdez has performed well over the past few weeks and despite a solid offense in Oakland, I’m starting him where I can.
- In the third tier, Tyler Anderson is our streaming pick of the day as I try to go 9-for-10 in streams to end the season and hit the coveted 100 Wins for the season (it’s not going to happen). Anderson has looked like the “Spider-Man” this season and a date with the mediocre Angels should continue the narrative for at least one more start.
- The options after Anderson are…rough. All of these pitchers carry a low floor and solid ceiling, giving these starts the potential to make or break your season. Will Sean Manaea bounce back from 91 mph velocity? Can Jaime Barria be a “Toby” against the Mariners? Is Zac Gallen going to reclaim the feel for all his secondary pitches? Good luck everyone.
- In the final tier, Eli Morgan is once again a “Cherry Bomb” option. He performed against the Yankees, but the White Sox should have their full crew and be ready to pounce if his fastball command isn’t there.
- Those desperate for something on Saturday could consider Jordan Lyles against the Orioles as he at least has the potential to go six frames on the back of his 2021-edition slider. I wouldn’t chance it in normal circumstances.
Photo by Leslie Plaza Johnson/Icon Sportswire | Design by Quincey Dong (@threerundong on Twitter)
There are hardly any good options for me tomorrow. Who would you use between Barria and Gallen? I can’t catch my opponent in ratios but really need a win.