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: 60-46
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s ace day and I have Sandy Alcantara under Gerrit Cole simply because of the matchups. I could have egg on my face at the end of the day (how could I ever doubt Sandy?!) but it’s a little safer with Cole.
- The bottom half of the top tier isn’t as safe. Brandon Woodruff is facing what we think is a banged-up Red Sox team, but they’ve been able to score a bit more than I expected as of late. Robbie Ray is coming off an outing without a single slider whiff and now has to endure the Astros. Still start them, but I feel your anxiety.
- The second tier leads with Lance Lynn and his depressed velocity facing the pedestrian Athletics lineup. This should work, but he’s not an auto-start given the volatility across the last month.
- Miles Mikolas, Marcus Stroman, and Martín Pérez are all Toby types who all carry heavy quality start potential against middling squads.
- Yes, we’re starting Alex Cobb wherever we can against the Cubs. It’s been a bit of chaos this year, but he should excel here and who knows, maybe Chicago has dealt away some key players by then.
- It’s Coors, but Julio Urías just sat 94.6 mph on his four-seamer and that’s AMAZING. I really hope that sticks in Colorado and pushes him to yet another productive pitcher.
- The third tier kicks off with Patrick Sandoval against the Rangers. He’s hurt managers in three of his last four outings and the Rangers can pack a punch. That WHIP is still elevated and despite the strikeout ceiling, I understand managers who want to look elsewhere.
- Are we okay with Jeffrey Springs? He hasn’t been locked in for a bit now and the second half woes could be hitting him as he faces the Guardians. I think this will be a telling start either way.
- The ceiling of Blake Snell forces me to place him higher than the bottom three of the tier as they all share a similar floor, even if Snell is getting the Twins.
- Speaking of which, I’m favoring Dean Kremer above José Quintana and Madison Bumgarner as my streaming pick of the day. Kremer’s heater and cutter have performed well and despite the potential of the longball, it still makes for an easier matchup that the Phils or Atlanta for the other two.
- In the bottom tier, I hope James Kaprielian can take another step to earn our trust against the White Sox, but I’m not interested in testing it on Friday.
- There isn’t much else to chase here, with Kris Bubic facing the mighty Yankees, Mike Minor struggling all season, and Bailey Falter + Aníbal Sánchez instilling minimal adoration.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- The top tier is as iffy as you’ll see in these ranks, with Joe Musgrove at the top despite facing the mighty Twins offense. Let’s hope Byron Buxton has a day off.
- Clayton Kershaw also has a difficult night ahead as he heads to Coors. I understand those that see Coors and run for the hills, but it’s Kershaw. The probability of success outweighs the relatively high floor he brings.
- The second tier feels more at home. Sonny Gray and Carlos Carrasco aren’t facing the toughest lineups, making it easy to slot into your Saturday lineups.
- I know, Tyler Mahle is pitching at home. He isn’t destined to falter inside Great American Ballpark and as his likely final outing in the stadium this year, I think he’s worth the play against the middling Orioles lineup. The strikeouts are still there, after all.
- The third tier is filled to the brim with your Toby types with great matchups. Corey Kluber should be fine against the Guardians, Johnny Cueto’s magic has a good chance of lingering against the Athletics, Ross Stripling faces the worst offense in the league against right-handers, and even Zach Plesac gets a cushy matchup where his slider/change can thrive.
- Don’t overlook Ranger Suárez, who has lowered his ERA to sub 4.00 levels as he’s getting whiffs on his changeup once again + nailing the edges with his new cutter. A date with the Pirates may turn a whole lot of heads.
- The Do Not Start tier…oh dear this tier. There are so many names here and I understand many of you will be digging through this to find something, but let me tell you right now, you’re playing with fire. I didn’t place them in this tier for nothing. Let me break this down as best as I can.
- Eric Lauer is a Cherry Bomb against a still solid offense. Jakob Junis isn’t fully stretched out despite getting the Cubs + his slider is all he has. Nick Pivetta’s best days are behind him. Drew Smyly had a great curve last time and it likely doesn’t stick.
- *Inhales aggressively* Mitch Keller is the streaming pick of the day as he’s been more often beneficial than detrimental, but the Phils could destroy him. Glenn Otto’s stuff isn’t what we want to see, even against the Angels. Chris Flexen and Zack Greinke are Tobys facing two of the toughest offenses.
- Both Ian Anderson and Dakota Hudson are Cherry Bombs and Hudson’s ceiling isn’t very high. Paul Blackburn has been ghastly over the last month. Chase Silseth hasn’t locked in yet.
- We’re also done waiting for Trevor Rogers to click and there’s no way I’m trusting Kyle Freeland inside Coors.
- So that leaves Austin Voth against the Reds (no thanks), Erick Fedde against the Cardinals (Don’t Trust The Feddes), Corbin Martin in his second start after walking far too many, and Drew Hutchison against the mighty Toronto Blue Jays.
- Soooooo yeah. That’s a rough day of pitching and be careful if you’re chasing anything in that bottom tier. It’s a minefield and you may be better off chasing arms on Saturday and Sunday instead.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)