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: 46-40
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- H’oy Nelly do we have a stacked top tier on Wednesday. It’s essentially half of the AGA tier with none of them facing a tough opponent. What a wonderful day for baseball.
- I elected to slot Cristian Javier in the top tier as well given his prolific strikeout marks across the last few weeks. A date with the Royals makes this all too easy to let Javier fly.
- The second tier is a bit more contentious and could be arranged in many ways. I’m leading with Joe Ryan who still doesn’t have his slider back, but featured his classic heater last time out and will face a White Sox team that hates right-handers.
- It’s difficult to deny a start from Miles Mikolas this year, though his momentum can’t last forever and his last outing did hint at things slowing down.
- I haven’t been blown away by Lance Lynn since his return from the IL and now he gets a Twins lineup that can be difficult to navigate. His ceiling is awfully high, but I can understand managers holding back their early pick in this one.
- As for José Berríos and Alex Cobb, I’d feel easy starting both on Wednesday. Berríos has had a tumultuous season, to say the least, but Oakland does a poor job on capitalizing on mistakes. Meanwhile, you have to believe Cobb will have some good fortune at some point and the Sneks could open the door for a strong outing. The reward is worth the risk for both.
- We begin the third tier with the streaming pick of the day in David Peterson as he heads to Cincinnati. With the way his slider has looked against the Rangers and Marlins, I’d take the chance here in hopes he replicates his strikeout prowess on the road.
- I was hoping Josiah Gray was on the verge of breaking out before he took a massive step back in his last start against the Marlins. It’s not a death sentence, though, and if he has his breakers he can take over a middling Phillies lineup.
- It’s the debut of Red Sox starter Brayan Bello! He’s gone at least five frames in all of his minor league starts this year, carrying an impressive strikeout rate along the way. I normally don’t start pitchers in MLB debuts – I simply don’t know enough about them yet – but I can see some rolling the dice here.
- Another upside play if you need one is, yes, I know, Trevor Rogers. He executed the “BSB” effectively last time out and could keep it rolling against the Angels, even if he earned just four whiffs across changeups and sliders against the Nationals.
- How does Michael Pineda get away with it? I can see him going five innings at 2 ER or fewer here against the Guardians, but the ceiling is simply too low for me to go after.
- Merrill Kelly is a proper “Toby” these days and a start against the Giants doesn’t get me all too excited. I can see an argument to place him in the third tier, but I’m apathetic to the outing.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- This is the starkest divide between stars and scrubs I’ve seen all year. We have a top tier filled with AGA arms against mostly cushy matchups, though it’s not clear if Kevin Gausman is in fact starting after taking a comeback to his foot in his last start. If the Jays go with someone else, don’t roll with them.
- Also, I can see some wanting Tony Gonsolin even higher. I get it, the man has been incredible, but those other arms are highly ranked on The List for a reason, too.
- The second tier is also pretty dang lovely. You’re going to struggle to find a manager not starting Spencer Strider given his hot stretch and let’s hope he’s able to find the zone constantly with both pitches.
- Meanwhile, Tyler Mahle is pitching at home (blegh) but the Pirates lineup should provide plenty of punchouts to make this a comfortable play.
- Then there’s the questionable, which, like the limit, Does Not Exist. Look y’all, I’m not just going to shove someone into a tier for the sake of having a pitcher in there. If the man is a Do Not Start, he’s a Do Not Start. My constructs don’t matter.
- So here we are, the lengthy bottom tier and uggggggh this is not a fun selection to try to find a streaming pick of the day. I’m ultimately choosing Jordan Lyles as A) He faces the meh Angels B) His slider has legit potential and C) He’s capable of going 6+ frames. I need this, Lyles. PLEASE.
- The other side of the ball is Chase Silseth, who could be considered as well. Sadly, he hasn’t squeezed out the full potential of his 95+ fastball and splitter yet and it would be unwise to anticipate a step forward on Thursday.
- I’m not sure what else there is to say about this tier as y’all know this isn’t fun. Josh Winckowski has survived lately, but it’s the Yankees. Do you really want to risk that? I don’t.
- Marco Gonzales has the ability to endure the Jays, but that floor is far too low to risk the mediocre reward.
- Then there’s JT Brubaker who could show up with good sliders and curves, but it’s in Cincy where the ball can fly out and ruin your evening in a hurry. Resist the Coffee Cakes.
- And his opponent Mike Minor wasn’t as sharp as the line suggested in his last outing against Atlanta. I’m not risking that, even against the Pirates.
- And so and so forth. I heavily recommend skipping Thursday for streams and turning your focus to the weekend instead.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)