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: 40-23
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- There are few phenomenal plays landing on Sunday, making for a potentially wild final day of H2H matchups. Strap in.
- Take Carlos Rodón and Tarik Skubal, for example. Rodón has been far from his best self lately and now faces the strong Dodgers, while Skubal has looked like an ace and has a real challenge against the Jays. I’m starting both as their ceilings are elite with a low chance of hitting their floors.
- In the second tier, I’m leading with Jameson Taillon despite his rough outing. He’s still crafty with his kitchen sink approach and the Cubs don’t pose a large enough threat.
I’m expecting Mike Clevinger to return from his illness to make his start on Sunday in a prime Rockie Road matchup. He may be a little limited or he may be best with another day of rest. We’ll see.Update: Nope, Clevinger was placed on the COVID IL. Bummer. I wouldn’t start Reiss Knehr in his place
- We haven’t fallen for Julio Urías like in 2021, but he’s still a great arm in your lineup the heavy majority of the time. I’d still start him against a Giants team known for performing better against southpaws.
- I can see some contention with Patrick Sandoval’s spot in the second tier against the Mets. He hasn’t had his primo changeup for a good while, though I think he still has enough in his repertoire to give a solid chance of success here. In short, it’s higher than a coin flip that he doesn’t hurt you and I think that’s worth the ceiling he possesses.
- In the third tier, it gave me no pleasure to put Robbie Ray at the top with his start against the Red Sox. After what I thought was an upward trajectory, Ray elected to change his arsenal to focus more on sinkers for whatever reason, resulting in another poor outing. Now against Boston, I have the least amount of faith in his success than ever before (which, of course, will mean this will be an amazing outing). I’d still lean starting, but it’s a tough call on a Sunday.
- Joining Ray is the streaming pick of the day in Cole Irvin, as he faces the Guardians in Cleveland. He’s been a productive Toby and the Guardians are the kind of team you steam against. Pretty straightforward here.
- It gets tough when you look at Edward Cabrera and Graham Ashcraft – two young starters who have turned heads lately. Sadly, they both face strong opponents in the Astros and heating up Cardinals and while they’ve both succeeded lately, their floors should not be ignored. I hope they soar above.
- If you’re looking for other options, Ranger Suárez and Ross Stripling could perform well against the Sneks and Tigers. When in doubt, take a guy who could go 5+ for a winning team against a poor offense.
- Lastly, Jon Gray has been volatile this year, to say the least, and I’m shrugging when asked if his slider or 96 mph velocity will appear against the White Sox. I sure hope at least one does.
- In the bottom tier, Jason Alexander throws a ridiculous sinker that moves a ton across the zone, giving him a chance to luck into outs for five or more frames. I sure don’t want to rely on that and put my WHIP at serious risk.
- If there was a start to believe in Germán Márquez, it’s this one. His slider was pristine last time out and he not only starts on the road, but against a Padres team that hates facing right-handers.
- Keep in mind – Tanner Houck tossed 22 pitches Friday night. If he’s actually starting for the Sawx on Sunday (Garrett Whitlock hit the IL), then it won’t be very long.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Look at that trio at the top of Monday’s rankings. Sandy Alcantara, Alek Manoah, and Aaron Nola. Sigh…
- The second tier is where the actual rankings begin. Alex Wood leads the way after taking care of business last time out against Rockie Road and gets another great matchup against the Royals. I’d roll him out everywhere.
- I want to believe Blake Snell still has it in him and a date with the Cubs should spell success. I understand the trepidation as given his early struggles, but this seems relatively safe with a high ceiling.
- I have faith Cristian Javier is far better than we’ve seen as of late. As long as he has either breaker control in the zone or elevated fastball command, he should excel against Texas.
- I’m loving the look of Ian Anderson’s changeup at the moment and if it sticks for the Nationals, it’ll return dividends for trusting managers.
- In the third tier, Merrill Kelly seems like a safe bet in a repeat matchup against the Reds. Don’t expect the world, but this should help.
- The streaming pick of the day is oddly Johnny Cueto as he faces the Tigers. He’s been able to go six frames with ease and the Tigers aren’t ones to bring concern.
- I’m considering Brady Singer a coin flip moving forward as he’s a Cherry Bomb. I wouldn’t consider the Giants an elite offense at the moment, making this is a decent play if you want to take an early week gamble.
- Speaking of gambles, Mike Minor has not been productive across his first two starts of the season. However, we expect the rust to fully shake off at some point and now getting the Sneks a second time with more innings under his belt could return a positive evening.
- In the bottom tier, if you need to chase strikeouts, by all
Johnsmeans go for Josiah Gray or Mitch Keller. I think the floor is too risky to chase the reward, but hey, go for it. Also, Mitch, can you please have the same slider that you had last time? K thx.
- The only other arm of actual consideration is Chris Flexen as he faces the Twins. The man has been able to go 6+ innings for a winning team before, but this is the Twins and he’s in a rough stretch. I wouldn’t do this.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)