Every day of the 2022 baseball season, I’ll be looking at today and tomorrow’s slate of scheduled starting pitchers and ranking their matchups for your fantasy baseball streams.
There’s a lot that goes into this and you can hang out with me on Twitch.tv/pitcherlist to talk about the specific ranks as I make them every weekday morning from 9am – 12am ET. If you have questions to these ranks, please ask during the morning Twitch AMA. Those are my office hours as I generally don’t answer comments on the site.
There are four tiers to these rankings with 12-teamers in mind:
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 throughout 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.
As I do my rankings, I thought it would be helpful to showcase a table of how we’re ranking offenses. Dave Swan does an incredible job of showcasing future SP matchups every 2-3 weeks in this article, and I’ve elected to use his offense ranks to share with all of you here:
I’m sure it’ll change through the year + there are differences to be made about teams vs. LHP or RHP, but it’s a great general table that y’all should keep in mind.
Alright, let’s get to it.
2022 Streamer Record: 4-4
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s your standard first tier on Friday. You have your aces – Carlos Rodón, Freddy Peralta (please) – you have your solid pitchers who you’re not sitting – Chris Bassitt, Pablo López, Dylan Cease – and you have that one guy who is good enough with a fantastic matchup.
- That man is Zach Eflin as he gets the Marlins. You drafted him specifically for his starts against Oakland and Miami and we’re still rolling with it. Just don’t feel the need to hold on for his next start in Coors.
- The second tier is a short one today. First up is The Bear as he faces off against the Orioles of Baltimore. I still don’t love his heaters and cutter, but the curve and change are certainly good enough to make this worthwhile.
- It wasn’t the best of season debuts for Tarik Skubal, but I think he’s stuff is good enough to warrant a start against the Royals.
- Then there’s the questionable tier. Oh lordy this is a lot. I want to begin by saying that the third tier is generally a place for starters I don’t want to start. If I am rolling them out there with bravado of any kind, they are in tier 2. Got it? Cool.
- I can do a blurb on essentially everyone in here but I’m going to try to condense it as much as possible. Bear with me
- Joe Ryan wasn’t looking great in his first start of the year and gets the mighty Sawx on Friday. I believe in him long term, (h*ck, I believe in him before April is over) but this start gives me the willies.
- The streaming pick of the days is Reid Detmers as he gets the Rangers. If this were a worse offense, I’d be rolling him out there in tier 2, but Texas is looking strong early. As for Detmers, I believe he’s plenty better than the first start of the year and has legit upside we’ll be seeing shortly. Will it be in this one? Ehhhh we’ll see.
- Nick, that wasn’t a whole lot of confidence in Detmers and there are so many other names in this Tier! Well they aren’t so great either, you know. There’s a game happening in Coors and that’s all kinds of trouble. Kyle Wright was solid in his first start, but the Padres could mess him up if his command is any worse. On the other side is (likely) the exciting debut of MacKenzie Gore, but how long will he go? And against Atlanta?!
- Some are still hyped about Tony Gonsolin who gets a solid matchup against the Reds in Los Angeles, but I don’t have much faith in his slider returning as we want it to. He’s looked shaky for a good while now and I’m not ready to commit.
- So take your pick if you’re searching for a Friday starter. Maybe Ross Stripling against the Athletics is the best one in the end as the Jays wanted to give their starters an extra day of rest early in the season. Or, why not, Drew Rasmussen’s ridiculous BABIP stretch continues against the powerful ChiSox lineup.
- Oh and there’s Nick Pivetta and Miles Mikolas as well because sure, let’s get everyone in here. Pivetta is a strikeout play with risky ratios, while Mikolas is the opposite, hoping to capitalize on the best defense in baseball behind him.
- In the final tier, I can see some being tempted by Jake Odorizzi or Brad Keller. Odorizzi could still be piggy-backed by the Astros, preventing him from going 5+ frames & faces a decent offense in Seattle. Keller had himself a strong outing against the Guardians, but I have a little more fear of the Tigers squad. If you’re dire for a QS, Keller could be the answer, but otherwise there isn’t enough to chase.
- For one more consideration, Mitch Keller gets the Nationals and will likely earn a strikeout per inning. His slider and curveball are not fully developed yet, though, and there’s a low floor here that I’d advise you to avoid altogether.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Saturday comes without a whole lot in the ole reliable category, with Justin Verlander as the only true “yeah, this is going to be fine” outing of the day. Sorry for just jinxing him.
- There may be some hesitation to start Julio Urías and Trevor Rogers, but the Reds on the road should make for a smoother Urías start as we root for his velocity to climb back to normal. As for Rogers, even against the Phillies I’m confident his fastball will keep his floor high.
- I’m a bit shocked to see Carlos Carrasco rostered in over 40% over leagues while Jameson Taillon, who is in a much better situation for Saturday, sits at just 23% rostership. That said, Carrasco’s slider and changeup looked great last time out and it could continue against the Sneks.
- Despite Cleveland surprising us lately with their bats, I’d still feel comfortable starting Anthony DeSclafani Saturday. He brings enough to the table to make it work.
- Despite not trusting Hyun Jin Ryu for the long haul this year, a start against the Athletics seems right up his alley for a Win and decent ratios.
- The Rangers are giving starters fits out of the gate and you may have some hesitation starting Noah Syndergaard. At the same time, he handled the Dodgers in his final tune-up and survived the Astros last week. There’s risk, absolutely, but we all know you’re starting him.
- The streaming pick of the day falls to Nick Martinez as he gets Atlanta. I’m a fan of his deep repertoire, though I will acknowledge Atlanta’s dangerous offense that could make this a tough day at the park. It’s very close to being a Tier 3 pick, so if you’re indecisive about this, it’s okay to sit him.
- You should feel fine with both Tanner Houck and Zac Gallen over the weekend. Houck had a tough time with New York but should settle in nicely hosting the Twins. Gallen is making his first start of the year (finally!) and looked great in the spring, even with increased velocity. I’m all for it, even if it comes with just five frames.
- In the third tier, Sonny Gray gets dealt a tough hand as he faces the Sawx. He didn’t have his breaking balls in his previous outing and I’m terrified Boston will pounce.
- Cal Quantrill and Steven Matz even have the chance to go six, but it comes with a low floor that may be too much for you to slot them in your lineups.
- Can Ian Anderson rein in his command issues? He struggled in the spring and was atrocious last time out, making this a start I’m outright avoiding. I believe Anderson will turn it around as we get deeper in the year – maybe this is the one! – but the ceiling is so dang low I can’t in earnest suggest him in any fashion.
- I know we’re amped about Hunter Greene’s velocity, but dealing with the Dodgers lineup is an ordeal, especially for a guy with questionable command. The potential of a disaster is too rich for my blood.
- Corey Kluber had his cutter working in his first start of the season, though we saw it fluctuate all last season & he gets the ChiSox this time around. No thanks.
- I don’t believe Adrian Houser is as poor as he was last time out and it’ll likely come with time. The reward is too paltry to consider him against the Cardinals
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)