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 about 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: 58-45
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- The top tier starts off with a bang and slows down by the bottom three. Pablo López has a challenge ahead as he aims to avoid the longball in Cincinnati and is coming off a rough performance. He should rebound, but there is a touch more risk than usual here.
- I debated with Twitch about the placement of Spencer Strider in the top or second tier, and ultimately landed among the other auto-starts despite his tumble last time out. If you have Strider rostered, you’re starting him against the middling Phillies offense as he could explode for another ten strikeout game.
- The second tier kicks off with a pair I feel are ahead of the others below them in José Berríos and Mike Clevinger. Berríos will not have to face Paul Goldschmidt or Nolan Arenado in Toronto (not vaccinated) and Clevinger gets a chance to feast on the Tigers. Both of these starts should get you salivating.
- The final four were tough to rank.
Frankie Montas can simply dominate over seven frames, but the Astros could be a major hindrance.Jordan Montgomery has cruised despite tough opponents before, though I don’t want to underrate Mets crew. And George Kirby may stumble a little coming back from the minors and facing a heating-up Rangers offense. Update: I realized after publishing that Montas will likely still be limited with his pitch count after tossing just 53 pitches last time out. It moves him down to Do Not Start given the capped ceiling and low floor against Houston.
- The third tier is awfully tiny on Tuesday. Hunter Greene hasn’t pitched since the 15th and I hope it doesn’t bring out of the wrong side of his Cherry Bomb nature against the Marlins. It’s incredibly difficult to predict what we’ll see from Greene.
- Taijuan Walker has absolutely shocked me in the first half this year and he’d normally be in the second tier if not for a matchup against the #1 offense in baseball. The talent is still there for him to succeed despite the circumstances, but consider if you need to take the risk or not.
- The top three options of the bottom tier (after Montas) were all in consideration for my reluctant streaming pitch of the day as I ultimately landed on Spenser Watkins, who has produced consistently across the last few weeks. Pair that with a floundering Rays offense and he rises above the other two.
- Those two are Mitch White and Keegan Thompson. White has the better offense supporting him and the Nationals aren’t a major threat, while Thompson gets the lowly Pirates but didn’t last five innings in two of his last three starts.
- There’s a chance Josiah Gray is able to conjure plenty of strikeouts and avoid the longball against the Dodgers, but it’s far too dangerous to kick off your week.
- I slotted Gray just above Michael Kopech as I feel Josiah has a higher chance of hitting his ceiling than Kopech inside Coors, especially when it seems his knee injury is still affecting him. It’s rough rostering Kopech at the moment.
- There isn’t much else to go for on Tuesday. Josh Winckowski is coming back from a COVID stint, making him unlikely to go 5/6 frames as we saw before, José Suarez may have a shot to make it work against the Royals, but it’s a highly questionable spin of the wheel, and I’d hate trusting Dylan Bundy or Dane Dunning at this stage of the year.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- I don’t know about you, but I get a spark of joy seeing the top tier each day. Corbin Burnes is pitching! And Luis Castillo gets the Marlins! Oh, and Jon Gray is likely going to continue his dominance against the Mariners! It’s the little things in life.
- Keep in mind, Kevin Gausman is facing a Cardinals squad without Paul Goldschmidt or Nolan Arenado. He should feast.
- The second tier holds just a pair of arms for Wednesday. Zac Gallen should continue his season of solid ratios though I’ll always dream of something greater and a proper SP #1 season. Maybe next year…
- I can see some managers being hesitant about Tarik Skubal given how the last month or two have gone. He’s fresh off a 6 IP, 0 ER, 9 Ks start against the Athletics and I don’t think the Padres are enough of a threat to turn that away.
- The questionable start tier is a bit dicey. Drew Rasmussen is a decent play against the middling Orioles and Braxton Garrett could continue his hot streak against the Reds, though it’s a dangerous proposition as baseballs fly out of Great American Ballpark. Take a moment to determine if you need to start Garrett there.
- Our streaming pick of the day is Brad Keller against the Angels. Los Angeles is without Mike Trout and could be even easier for Keller to coast 6+ frames, even if he’s a bit volatile.
- I’m not sure what the right spot is for Andrew Heaney. He hasn’t pitched in the bigs since June 19th as he’s dealt with a shoulder injury, which would normally send him to the fourth tier as a Still ILL, but he’s had two rehab games, with his most recent one coming with five frames against nineteen batters + he’s facing a mediocre Nationals lineup. I wouldn’t risk this if I didn’t have to as I’d love to see where he’s at first.
- Finally, there’s Tyler Wells, who has turned into a proper Toby and gets a struggling Rays offense. I don’t adore Wells’ ability, but there’s a decent chance he takes advantage.
- In the final tier, Kyle Gibson is a coin flip I don’t like taking these days. It could work as a right-hander against Atlanta, but is it worth it?
- This may be the final start we see of David Peterson for a while as Jacob deGrom should return next week and it’s unfortunate he squares up against the best offense in town. Hopefully the slider is as good as it has been and he can make it work, but I have my doubts.
- With the Red Sox all banged up and floundering, Cal Quantrill could do his normal PQS stuff. Chase it if you must.
- Lucas Giolito and Nathan Eovaldi are both struggling to find their velocity and it could persist on Wednesday. I have more hope for Giolito to recover, but a date in Coors is terrifying.
- Then we have a trio of Toby types with Marco Gonzales, Adam Wainwright, and Cole Irvin. Irvin gets the nod above Waino as he’s on a successful stretch, while the Rangers are a far better opponent to face than the Astros and Jays for Gonzales.
- Across the final five names, there’s not much to chase here. The ideal is Chris Archer lasting for five frames, Domingo Germán looked rugged in his first outing and now gets the tough Mets crew, and don’t get me started on Patrick Corbin and Antonio Senzatela. Please don’t.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)