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 – 11am 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:
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: 25-12
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- In the second tier, I was tempted to slot Charlie Morton into the top tier as he had his curveball working last time out and he gets a middling Padres lineup. We’re not completely out of the woods yet with Morton, though, and I understand some will want to be cautious.
- The same certainly applies for Shane Bieber as he was at his nadir last time out against the Jays. Let’s hope the velocity and command returns as he faces a good-but-not-Toronto offense in Minnesota.
- The Dodgers shifted their rotation and have Julio Urías starting today with Walker Buehler starting yesterday. The Phillies are a dangerous squad, but “start your studs” n all.
- I’m still holding out hope that Trevor Rogers will find his changeup and slider once again as the four-seamer is doing its best to keep him steady. The Brewers have been hot as of late and I have zero issues pushing him further down the ranks if you’d rather not chance it.
- I’m excited to watch George Kirby after his incredible debut and despite facing the Mets and failing to feature a major whiff secondary pitch, his confidence has to be through the roof and could propel another strong outing.
- The final two in the questionable start are interesting. Michael Lorenzen closes the crew as he’s slated to face the lowly Athletics. He may be available in your leagues and I’d take a shot as he has the tools to go 6+ frames for the Angels.
- There’s a good amount of hype surrounding Cristian Javier and a date with the Nationals is far from intimidating, though I’m a little nervous he’ll have a low pitch count and not bring his best stuff. He’s a guy to start, just not as confidently as the others.
- In the third tier, some may want Kyle Hendricks higher, but he’s a Cherry Bomb to me regardless of opponent. We just don’t know if he’ll have the pristine command or not.
- Our reluctant streaming pick of the day is Jakob Junis, who has had the best slider of his career across the last few weeks. He faces the Cardinals and I’m okay with it. He hasn’t gone more than five frames yet and I still question if his sinker can be the high called strike pitch it’s been, but that slider could carry him to the finish line.
- It looks like Hyun Jin Ryu is returning from the IL against the Rays and I’m not sure what we’ll see. It’s a coin flip between him settling right into his roll and debilitating batters with his changeup…or allow far too much hard contact and getting ousted before the fifth.
- I see Michael Pineda as a strange option. The Orioles aren’t a huge threat, though I can’t rid myself of the thought that Pineda is running on fumes – there just doesn’t seem to be a whole lot behind what he’s doing. Careful.
- In the bottom tier, Zach Thompson may get some looks as he faces the Reds. He had his cutter last time out, though the curveball was missing & the Reds are possibly heating up…? I’d avoid.
- If you’re looking for someone who has a decent shot at 5/6 frames, I’d go with Adam Oller as he gets the Angels. Los Angeles is far too menacing for me to chance this, though Oller could make it work if things go his way. Oakland will certainly give him the chance, at least.
- With Dylan Bundy still feeling the effects of COVID, Devin Smeltzer is getting the call to return to the majors and start today. Don’t chase it.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Sunday is going to be filled with last-minute starts to hopefully save your week. The top half is pretty, with the bottom half featuring Frankie Montas, Patrick Sandoval, and Kyle Wright, a trio of pitchers all looking to rebound and re-submit their application for an AGA label.
- Aaron Nola sits at the bottom of the tier as he faces the Dodgers. A tough lineup mixed with his incredibly bad fortune grants more hesitation than we’d like. Start him, though. It’s in your best interest to roll with him despite the circumstances.
- In the second tier, I can imagine some wanting Nestor Cortes Jr. and Joe Ryan in the first tier. The White Sox are strong against lefties and Ryan hasn’t found the fifth in either of his last two games. Still like em both, of course.
- Carlos Carrasco has been getting plenty of attention and while I am starting him against the Mariners, he’s not the auto-lock some may see him as. We still haven’t seen a day where it’s all clicked for him and I wonder if that should be framed as a positive or negative thing.
- I elected to put Adam Wainwright in the third tier as he returns from the COVID-IL to face the Giants. Waino hasn’t been on top of his game this year + we don’t know how he’ll be enduring the illness. Proceed with caution
- It’s a terrible day for streaming, which means Tyler Wells gets the call against the Tigers. Blegh, I don’t want to do this, but I recognize that his breakers + changeup + a 93/94 mph heater could go 5+ strong against the middling Tigers offense. Something to consider.
- I elected to stick Hunter Greene in the third tier as well given his strikeout upside and a return to 98 mph as he faces the lowly Pirates. It’s a coin-flip and not a lock for success.
- You could also consider Martín Pérez or José Quintana if you’re in dire need for starts on Sunday. Pérez is seemingly on a Vargas Rule as he upped his sinker velocity last time out, while Quintana just took down the dang Dodgers. Maybe these old vets can make it work one more time.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)