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:
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: 19-7
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- We have a slate of 32 starters with the Atlanta-New York doubleheader and it’s making for a massive third tier today. Lots of options to choose from if you want to get ahead of the week.
- But before we get there, we have the comfortable top tier, which is clear as day. I highly doubt anyone would contest any of these plays – Trevor Rogers is facing the Diamondbacks, ya’ll. Don’t question it.
- The second tier is awfully small and leads with Michael Kopech against the Cubs. I’ve been a little concerned about Kopech given his 94/95 mph velocity and heavy shift away from his secondaries. Still, the Cubs shouldn’t be the team that adds the final straw to the camel’s back.
- Noah Syndergaard has had a wonderful run to kick off the start of the year and the Red Sox have been in a rut. I’m not sure if Boston’s woes will continue, though it’s enough encouragement to slide Thor into your lineups.
- The Reds have elected to bump Tyler Mahle a day early and a start on the road against one of the worst offenses around should make you feel better about starting Mahle.
- So here’s that massive third tier and I’m starting with Charlie Morton. It was a rough April for the veteran and it’s easy to fall into the thought of age getting the better of him. However, he was slow until the middle of May last year and is not showcasing depreciated velocity. I still believe it’s a matter of time before he rebounds in full, but I understand letting him warm the bench until then.
- I’m excited to watch Mike Clevinger tomorrow as he returns from the IL. I have to believe he’s a Still ILL given we haven’t seen him pitch a regular season game since 2020. He’s been better during his rehab (and properly stretched out), I still want to see it first before confidence returns.
- The streaming pick of the day goes to Bruce Zimmermann as he faces the Twins. I’m not terribly excited about this (third tier, n all) but Zim has a strong changeup with a solid slider and it could make for trouble against a volatile Twins lineup.
- There are many other options to consider, and Dakota Hudson stands out as he faces the Royals. He’s been everything we’ve wanted across his last two starts, allowing his defense to do the heavy lifting for few earned runs. It could continue in Kansas City.
- There’s hype around Cristian Javier getting his chances in the rotation, I just wish he weren’t facing the dangerous Seattle offense. Be careful here.
- Jameson Taillon is often a play I feel safe making, but the Jays make many pitchers sweat on the mound. They bring the heat as much as anyone.
- The bottom half of this tier is filled with your typical Toby types who don’t have the benefit of Zim and Hudson’s matchups. Well, Brad Keller kinda does, but he hasn’t been in the same groove with his fastball and slider recently and it could result in disaster.
- Paul Blackburn, Chris Flexen, and Ranger Suárez each get strong opponents on Tuesday, though each possesses the skills to stay on the path for six frames.
- In normal situations, Ryan Yarbrough would be a strong play against the Athletics, but he only went 2.2 frames in his final rehab start. I worry he doesn’t have a great shot at five frames here.
- Oh, and there’s Germán Márquez, who will always be in the third tier. There’s little rhyme or reason to his success and failure.
- Heading to the bottom tier, I can see some being enamored by Michael Pineda as he faces the Pirates, though it seems to me as if he’s running on fumes. This isn’t the same arm from previous years with a ridiculous slider. This smells like a trap.
- Lastly, Glenn Otto, David Peterson, and Michael Wacha could be of consideration on Tuesday, but given their tough matchups, I think you’re better off avoiding potential catastrophes than chasing their ceilings.
- Keep in mind, there’s a chance Jon Gray returns from the IL to start today instead of Glenn Otto. That would be a Still ILL and I wouldn’t be starting Gray, slotting him in the final tier.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Despite the volatility we’ve seen from Freddy Peralta this year, he’s hosting the Reds on Wednesday. Yeah. The Reds.
- It’s unclear at the moment if Shohei Ohtani is indeed starting against the Red Sox as he’s nursing a groin injury. If he’s pitching, you start him.
- The second tier isn’t as comfortable as we normally see. Nestor Cortes Jr. and Alex Wood each have unfavorable matchups but if you have them rostered, it’s in your best interest to start them regardless.
- MacKenzie Gore is still in the Padres rotation (for now) and a date with the Guardians should be beneficial to managers who have held tight through the haze.
- Our streaming option of the day is Kyle Bradish, who has an all-around solid repertoire and should be a safe bet against the Twins.
- I was tempted to put Ian Anderson into the second tier as well, but the Mets offense has done damage and Anderson has yet to find a comfortable groove.
- If you’re looking for another streaming option, consider Elieser Hernandez as he faces the Diamondbacks. His slider is legit and the Snakes are not.
- We have a sea of Toby pitchers in the third tier, from Madison Bumgarner and Corey Kluber to Adam Wainwright and Cal Quantrill. All can make this work, the question is if the reward is worth the risk.
- Speaking of risk, the second half of tier three is filled with Cherry Bombs. We’ve seen both sides of Kyle Hendricks and the White Sox, despite performing terribly against right-handers this year, may display Hendricks’ ugly side.
- Matt Brash and Garrett Whitlock are confusing plays for Wednesday. Brash has an elite ceiling, but has fallen in a valley lately and could face a ton of trouble against the Astros. Whitlock only tossed 60 pitches last time out, making for a short ceiling against a tough Angels crew.
- There’s a chance Dylan Bundy pulls it off against his former squad, but after last week’s fall from grace, it’s hard to confidently place your bets in his favor.
- I wish I could believe more in Tony Gonsolin, but his slider hasn’t returned the number of strikes I want to see, his velocity is down, and the Giants rough up pitchers constantly.
- In the bottom tier, José Quintana is fresh off a Golden Goal, but I’d be shocked if he were able to replicate success against the Tigers.
- I’m a bit intrigued about Austin Gomber, though he performs much better on the road than in Colorado, where his breakers aren’t quite as impressive.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)