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: 46-41
7/7 Note: I’m hyper aware of the last three weeks. It’s been rough, as I’ve pulled down my record dramatically. I can’t help but feel awful for anyone following the ranks and it going south in that time – it’s all about the process we choose them and that’s all I can do. I highly recommend y’all chatting with me in the morning as I make them moving forward if you feel my process is flawed, and at the end of the day, the streaming pick is a product of the landscape – I can’t select the “good” arms, I’m innately choosing the ones most managers don’t want on their teams. Let’s hope for better days ahead.
Today’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. Update: Gausman won’t make the start as he may start on Sunday instead. Long reliever Casey Lawrence will start in his place and that’s a clear avoid.
- 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.Update: Mahle hit the IL as now Robert Dugger will start on Thursday, adding to the already large DNS tier.
- 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.Update: It’s now Roansy Contreras instead of Coffee Cakes and I’m slotting him in the DNS tier. He’s fanned just 10 in his last four starts and pitching in Cincy could spell another disaster start.
- 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.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Nothing too interesting in the top tier for Friday. Pablo López has the toughest matchup, landing him at the bottom of the ranks, but he’s a clear start in all your leagues.
- And obviously, Shane McClanahan gets the top slot. The dude is so dang legit, it hurts.
- I elected to put Chris Bassitt at the top of the second tier. He’s coming back from the COVID-IL to face the Marlins and while there is some hesitation (maybe it’s a Still ILL?) I think Bassitt is too good of a talent to sit against the Marlins.
- It’s a pretty easy decision to start Zac Gallen and Sonny Gray in their matchups, but not as easy for Nestor Cortes against the Red Sox. He’s performed at too high of a level to sit him, though we all wish this were an easier day at the park.
- At the bottom of the tier, Tyler Anderson gets what should be a cushy matchup against the Cubs and Adam Wainwright should be started by managers as he faces a weakened Phillies crew.
- And at the end is José Urquidy against the Athletics as he’s been cruising with his four-seamer over the past few outings. Let it ride, let it ride.
- In the third tier, Aaron Ashby is our streaming pick of the day as he faces the Pirates a second time. His return from the IL wasn’t exactly what we hoped for and I’m anticipating a rebound as Ashby finds his groove.
- I want to rank both Jon Gray and Blake Snell higher, but with Gray facing the Twins and Snell’s overall volatility this year, I can’t slot them any higher than #14 and #15.
- Michael Lorenzen’s start against the Orioles is up in the air at the moment and would be replaced by Reid Detmers if he can’t go on Friday. I would bench Detmers if so.
- I’m intrigued by Aaron Civale’s matchup against the Royals as he’s shown promise with his breakers as of late. That said, the Royals are as hot as they have been all season (albeit, against middling opponents), and you may not want to chance it.
- In the final tier, it gives me no joy to bench Tarik Skubal, but his downward spiral has no end in sight, especially against a White Sox team that excels against southpaws.
- There are some desperate streams here in Brady Singer, Kyle Gibson, Chad Kuhl, and JT Brubaker. It’s all too risky for me, but I can see at least one of these working out on Friday.
- I know Michael Wacha has performed surprisingly well over the last month, but don’t forget – he was skipped in his last start because of a fatigued arm. This seems awfully dangerous against the Yankees.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)