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Starting Pitcher Streamer Rankings – 5/7 & 5/8

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: 21-9

 

Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

 

  • HUGE UPDATE: So many games rained out + injured guys returning and not returning have truly messed up yesterday’s rankings for today. This is a lot, so bear with me.
  • Ohhh and the TEX/NYY is already rained out, with NYM/PHI + KCR/BAL looking like they could go too. It’s just that kind of weekend.

 

  • I often find it hard to talk about the top tier – they’re all great pitchers and you’re gonna start em. It’s fun to not think about these decisions.
  • Twitch chat was discussing possible weather impacts to some starts like Clayton Kershaw – I personally don’t get too deep in the weeds with weather during these rankings and if you want to shift him around because of the expected blegh days ahead in Chicago, by all Johns means do so.

 

  • The second tier begins with Framber Valdezwho hasn’t done a whole lot to make us feel wonderful drafting him in leagues. That said, the Tigers aren’t a team to fear and Valdez will be slotted into many of your lineups without much thought.
  • Luis Severino has certainly displayed the stuff to make us consider him as a legit starter this year, but he hasn’t quite put it all together lately. The Rangers are a hot/cold crew and shouldn’t pose a massive threat, but I understand if some want to proceed with a touch of caution. Update: This game has been postponed.

 

  • There are two streaming options for shallower leagues inside this tier as both Michael Lorenzen and Chris Paddack are rostered in fewer than 30% of leagues. Lorenzen has showcased himself as a Toby with a hint of strikeout upside thus far and the Nationals are a welcome team for a Saturday start.
  • As for Chris Paddackhis fastball has been plenty better this season, while incorporating his curveball around 20% of the time has helped keep batters at bay. The Athletics should make for a despite outing in favor of Paddack. Update: Nope, Sonny Gray is returning from the IL to make this start. He tossed three innings in his rehab start, so I’m not expecting a whole lot here.

 

  • In the third tier, it’s difficult to decide what we should do with Eduardo RodriguezI personally see him as someone you keep starting despite the rough matchups (and his respite is nigh! The Athletics are next!) though I understand if many want to give him a single start break.
  • With the postponement of Friday’s games, I’m assuming Tyler Anderson’s start gets pushed to Saturday, making him the streaming pick of the day. He’s a Toby through and through and the Cubs are a decent team to stream against.

 

  • It looks like Nick Lodolo will return from the IL (what it gift it was, missing a start on Coors without sacrificing a roster spot!) and I’m a touch concerned about his pitch count given the time off. Here’s to hoping the quality of inning will make the game worthwhile and h*ck, maybe he goes five frames with ease. Update: Nah, he ain’t coming back today. And no one rejoiced.
  • The bottom five of the third tier are a bit of a mini-tier for me. I’m treating this full tier as “if they are a coin flip, they’re here” and all of the below are just that. Kyle Freeland gets the best matchup he can hope for and could display his strikeout upside, Mitch Keller gets nearly the same treatment, Dane Dunning may have the same command he had last weekendZach Eflin could go six frames, and Josiah Gray earns oh so many whiffs.

 

  • The bottom tier has some fun options if you’re still searching. Daniel Lynch could thrive against the Orioles, but I’m still waiting for an overwhelming start to instill the faith on a given day. His floor is so dang low. Update: It’s Carlos Hernandez instead and I’m not interested with his poor command.
  • There’s also Ross Stripling and Zach Davies to consider if you’re chasing a Win. The Jays could propel Stripling over the Guardians while Davies gets Rockie Road and could reveal his vintage changeup.

 

  • Lastly, Roansy Contreras may get the call for the Pirates and have as soft of an introduction to the majors as you could hope for with a start against the Reds. The real issue here is his expected low pitch count – he failed to go four frames in the minors in his two starts this year. It makes for too low of a ceiling for me to start him with confidence. Update: This one legit stinks as the rainout pushed back Contreras’ 2022 debut. Womp womp.
  • And sure, why not. You need some strikeouts? Nick Pivetta could do something against the White Sox – Chicago isn’t the strongest team against right-handers, after all.

 

Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings


Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

 

  • So this has a lot of potential to change given the rain, so be a bit cautious with the TEX/NYY, NYM/PHI, and KCR/BAL matchups.
  • There are also many changes that could be made given our predictions for SPs in doubleheaders Saturday and Sunday that may shake these us. Monitor probable pitchers often this weekend.

 

  • The top tier is a lovely place. Some may not want Gerrit Cole atop the ranks and I get that. I see his rest of season as the SP #2 and there’s no reason that doesn’t include tomorrow.
  • Seriously, I can’t wait to watch these outings as they all could be absolute bliss.

 

  • The second tier has Luis Severino once again and (pardon the copy/pasta) has certainly displayed the stuff to make us consider him as a legit starter this year, but he hasn’t quite put it all together lately. The Rangers are a hot/cold crew and shouldn’t pose a massive threat, but I understand if some want to proceed with a touch of caution.
  • I know it’s been rough for Tyler Mahle as of late, but he has all the chances in the world to recalibrate facing the Pirates twice in his next two starts. It’s too good of a chance to pass up.

 

  • Let’s talk about the third tier. Can we talk about the third tier? I’ve been dying to talk about the third tier. It’s a LONG boy. And comes in many different shapes and sizes.
  • First you have Charlie Morton and Trevor Rogers as your potential aces who haven’t had the best start to the season. Milwaukee and San Diego aren’t the cushiest of matchups and while their ceiling is higher than any in this tier, we just don’t know if they’ll hint at it here.

 

  • Then it’s a slew of Toby characters and we’ve got a whole lot of em today. Marcus StromanZack GreinkeChris Flexenall lead the way despite Stroman and Flexen getting served some tough matchups. They can handle it.
  • The streaming pick of the day is labeled a Toby as well and that’s Bruce Zimmermann against the Royals. His changeup and slider are solid and overall, he’s fine.

 

  • How much are we buying into the recent surges of Jake Odorizzi and Michael WachaOdorizzi may have been a product of fortunate BABIP while Wacha could be a Vargas RuleTake your pick here.
  • The Brewers have announced they are going to be a little more aggressive starting Aaron Ashby moving forward, which is great news though a start against Atlanta isn’t much of a welcome party. Be careful.

 

  • At the end of the tier, Dane Dunning and Jon Gray each face the Yankees in the Bronx. Dunning had pristine command last time and it could carry over, while Gray was far from sharp in his return from the IL. Here’s to hoping we can cough it up as a Still ILL.
  • And Zach Eflin also exists. He’s a coin flip to go 5/6 frames of solid ball each day, so don’t ignore him as an option if you need it.

 

  • In the final tier, (more Copy/Pasta, sorry!), Daniel Lynch could thrive against the Orioles, but I’m still waiting for an overwhelming start to instill the faith on a given day. His floor is so dang low.
  • And there’s an outside chance Zach Thompson finds some of the cutter/curveball magic he had last year as he faces the pedestrian Reds offense.

 

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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