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Starting Pitcher Streamer Rankings – 5/1 & 5/2

Nick Pollack ranks the starting pitcher streamers for today & tomorrow.

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.

(Opener) – Outlines that a pitcher is being opened for that day & the pitcher listed will follow the opener.

 

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:

 

Swan’s Early-Season Offensive Tiers

 

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: 17-7

 

Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

 

  • It’s ace day – who doesn’t love ace day? Start all the studs in tier one, grab some coffee, and enjoy your Sunday.
  • If there is one arm here that I am a touch concerned about, it’s Logan Gilbert despite a start against the Marlins. We have yet to see his slider and changeup come through thus far and while his stellar fastball has carried him in April, it’s more fragile than ideal.

 

  • The second tier shouldn’t give much worry, either. As long as Triston McKenzie is finding the zone, he should have few problems with the Oakland offense & Marcus Stroman’s trials of April are essentially over, especially against the Brewers. They should both be fine.
  • We should all be thrilled to see Alex Cobb return from the IL on Sunday, though I do wonder if it’ll come at a dip of velocity and/or fewer pitches. Regardless, he shouldn’t be severely detrimental, warranting the spot in your lineup.

 

  • The third tier is often where it gets interesting and Sunday is no exception. There seems to be a large gap in my emotions between Eduardo Rodriguez and Framber Valdez despite each facing difficult lineups, but don’t let their ranking separation fool you – this is an awfully tight tier and I can see y’all shuffling these guys around plenty. They both have the ability to earn a Quality Start if you need it and could pull it off.
  • The streaming pick of the day is Michael Lorenzenwho has an uncomfortable matchup with the White Sox. His kitchen sink approach has worked in April and while Chicago presents a challenge, they are worse against right-handers and Lorenzen certainly has the ability to last six frames.

 

  • Other options include Josiah Gray and Chris PaddackGray is a solid choice if you’re chasing strikeouts, though the Giants should give you pause if you’re in a close ratio matchup. Paddack has looked much better in his last two starts, featuring effective elevated fastballs, a larger reliance on his curveball, and dominance with the changeup. The Rays are a tough hill to climb and may slow down his ascension. Update: It looks like Josh Winder is getting his shot for the Twins instead. If he sticks in the rotation, there’s some intrigue with a start against the Athletics later in the week, but I’d wait-and-see here against the Rays. No idea where he’s stretched out to.
  • There’s also Zach Eflin to consider – he’s a Toby going up against a productive Mets offense, but if you need to take a shot at a decent WHIP and Quality Start, he’s a good play.

 

  • In the final tier, Nick Pivetta against the Orioles seems like it should be in a higher tier, but he’s simply too volatile to trust. I’d only consider it if I were making a sizeable strikeout play.
  • Daniel Lynch did well last week with elevated heaters and a strong slider. The Yankees are awfully dangerous, though, and we haven’t seen consistency from Lynch during his career. It’s a wild card.

 

  • I’m well aware that Josh Fleming was a popular two-“start” play this week and while his first appearance came with atrocious luck, there’s a shot at four to five frames against the Twins on Sunday. It’s too low of a ceiling for me to chase given the floor, but I get it if you’re electing to chase it.
  • Finally, Jordan Hicks has been granted a lovely date with the Diamondbacks, but he’s not stretched out properly, nor is he flexing elite stuff that would get us excited even for four to five innings.

 

  • I also want to note Kyle Muller getting the callup as Max Fried was pushed back to Monday. Muller has showcased intriguing stuff with elevated heaters and two secondaries that get whiffs, but his control was lacking when we saw him last year. Keep an eye on it, but don’t expect much today.

 

Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings


Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

 

  • There isn’t a whole lot to talk about for Monday. The top tier has all of your lovely matchups, including a duel between Patrick Sandoval and Dylan CeaseY’all know how much I adore The Irish Panda, but I have to give the nod to Cease, who has been plenty sweeter than sour this year + the White Sox are known for performing well against left-handers.
  • And hey, let’s take a moment to smile at Pablo López earning the top spot as he squares off against the Snakes. He deserves it without question.

 

  • In the second tier, I’m leading with Drew Rasmussen after he dominated with his cutter & slider + he gets the lowly Athletics. Sign. Me. Up.
  • I struggled with where to place Jordan Montgomeryand in the end, I’m starting him if I have him rostered (I actually don’t anywhere, but that’s another story) even against the Jays. Let’s see that sinker continue to thrive.

 

  • I elected to squeeze Chris Paddack into the second tier, making him a solid streaming pick of the day. I’m encouraged by his increased curveball usage and improved four-seamer command, which could excel against the Orioles. Sorry for those who expected a Sunday outing, but now you get a lovely two-step with Baltimore + Oakland. I’d pick him up everywhere I could.
  • It’s Steven Matz vs. Zack Greinke is a battle of the Tobys. Take your pick.

 

  • In the third tier, I think some may be surprised to see the recent success of Marco Gonzales despite his rough schedule and I won’t rule out another day of success on the mound. Can’t say I’m going after it, though.
  • Jake Odorizzi had his best start last time out, but he needed to be ultra-efficient to last as long as he did. The Mariners are a respectable offense and should present too much of a challenge to let him fly.

 

  • For those in weekly leagues, Ross Stripling is interesting with his two-starts ahead, but I don’t think he’s there with his secondaries to warrant a pick-up in traditional 12-teamers. There’s a chance it works, but too risky for me.
  • And finally, in the bottom tier we have just two arms in Daulton Jefferies and Tyler WellsI don’t expect a whole lot from either one, making them easy avoids at this point.

 

Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings


Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

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