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: 43-33
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Despite their tough matchups, Corbin Burnes and Gerrit Cole rest atop Saturday’s ranks. They are #1/#2 in my ROS SP Ranks, you start them. Always.
- The final two arms are Max Fried and Shane Bieber as they face the Dodgers and Sawx. Not exactly what you want to see from your studs, but the ceiling is too good to rest them on your bench.
- In the second tier, Lance Lynn leads the way against the Orioles. I’m a little hesitant given the 1.5 mph velocity drop from 2021 we’ve see after two starts, though it could easily be explained by a rusty arm. We’re lucky to have a comfortable matchup to ease him back into full strength.
- We have a fun duel between Logan Gilbert and Patrick Sandoval, where I’d start both if I could. Don’t get in your head about it.
- In the third tier, Andrew Heaney is a shakier proposition with the Atlanta lineup in front of him. Their adoration to swat southpaws mixed with Heaney’s shaky slider command last time out has been skeptical he’ll maintain his sparkling 2022 marks.
- Josiah Gray has a fun matchup ahead against the Rangers as he’s been able to avoid the disaster start for some time. He could rack up the strikeouts in Texas without destroying your ratios.
- It’s a tough call starting or benching Cristian Javier against the Yankees. New York boasts one of the scariest offenses in the game and Javier has a propensity for blowups. At the same time, if he carries his four-seamer precision, he’ll be able to produce regardless of the offense. You’ll have to decide if the risk is worth it or not.
- We have a couple mediocre arms facing weak squads and it could work out in their favor. Brad Keller faces the Athletics and may go 6+, Josh Winckowski faces the Guardians and has a chance for a cheap Win, while Zach Davies is our streaming pick of the day as there’s a chance his changeup soars against a poor Detroit crew.
- In the bottom tier, I don’t think I’m ready to start Trevor Rogers yet, even after tallying 24 whiffs in his last outing. The Mets are a tough team to endure and I need to see some consistency from Rogers before throwing him back into my lineups.
- The same goes for Blake Snell…who hasn’t had the same encouraging signs as Rogers. I still feel Snell can be a fantastic arm in due time, but he’s simply not there yet and a night against the Phils could be rough.
- Other options in the bottom tier include JT Brubaker against the Rays and Alex Faedo against the Diamondbacks. I think both don’t have a high enough ceiling to take the chance here.
- I think we’re all done chasing Zach Eflin and Yusei Kikuchi for a little bit. Just let them hang out on the waiver wire. Maybe they’ll become friends.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Take a moment and realize that Shane McClanahan is getting a start against the Pirates. I cannot wait to see how that turns out.
- Tony Gonsolin and Joe Ryan aren’t your typical top-tier arms, but with Gonsolin’s massive success + Ryan’s matchup against “Rockie Road”, you should be starting them with confidence.
- The second tier is a short one today with José Berríos and Roansy Contreras. Berríos is The Great Undulater and a start against the pedestrian Brewers offense isn’t enough for us to lose our faith in his label.
- As for Roansy Contreras, I haven’t been blown away by his talent over the last month, but the Rays don’t scare me enough to sit him on my rosters. I’m starting him in most situations.
- The third tier is a large one for Sunday. We begin with Nestor Cortes, who hasn’t been as stellar over the last few weeks and has to deal with the Astros. There’s hope for an upswing as it could be simply a rough patch instead of proper regression, though he could hurt plenty on the final day of your week.
- I know, Tyler Mahle was rough in his previous start, but it was the Dodgers at home and now he gets an easier lineup on the road. I’d take a shot on his ceiling here.
- Both Marco Gonzales and Kyle Gibson are “Toby”s facing middling lineups on Sunday, equating to a wave of the hand as they enter my lineup.
- I wonder what we’ll see from Jack Flaherty against the Cubs. It’s a matchup that should favor him, but his velocity has been down and the rust hasn’t fallen off yet. I hope we see more than four frames here and a glimpse of the man we once knew.
- I can see many steering clear of Spencer Strider against the Dodgers after his horrid display against the Giants, but he’s a “Cherry Bomb”, hyper reliant on high strike rates on his fastball and slider. If he can feature above-average control, it won’t matter that he’s facing the Dodgers.
- My streaming pick of the day is James Kaprielian as he faces the Royals and another considerable streamer in Brady Singer. I’m leaning Kap after showcasing a heavy lean on his slider last time out, while Singer has been a “Cherry Bomb” regardless of his opponent.
- You could also consider David Peterson against the Marlins for the second start in the row, hoping he features the same excellent slider as before. It’s shaky, though, and I don’t think the ceiling is as high here.
- Do you want to start José Urquidy against the Yankees? That’s up to you – I’m staying away and slotted him in the final tier as I think the danger outweighs the potential high.
- Joining Urquidy in the bottom tier is Rich Hill even in a start against the Guardians. He hasn’t been able to capitalize against the Athletics and Tigers, why would the Guardians be massively different?
- Opposite Hill is Aaron Civale, who was able to survive against the Yankees with a major focus on sliders and curveballs. The Sawx are scary to face after just one outing of a new approach, but I hope it returns.
- I can see some wanting to trust Beau Brieske against the Diamondbacks and he makes for a decent stream if you need something for Sunday. I’m not sure the juice is worth the squeeze, though.
- Lastly, Jackson Tetreault made it work last time out with his 95 mph heater and the Rangers don’t pose a major threat. I don’t think there’s a whole lot in Tetreault’s repertoire, though, and I’d prefer to stay away.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)