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:
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: 73-56
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s a short Monday slate with Max Scherzer and Julio Urías far and away the best plays for Monday’s games as the only two AGA teams.
- Jordan Montgomery and Edward Cabrera slide into the top tier as a pair of pitchers on excellent rolls against poor offenses. It’s hard to deny them both a spot in your Monday lineups against the Cubs and Athletics.
- The top of the second tier goes to Jeffrey Springs against the Angels. I’m liking his changeup as of late and his command is at a place where he should be fruitful for his fantasy managers.
- Michael Kopech was able to survive against the Astros and as long as he’s above 95 mph and pumping strikes, he should be fine against the Royals.
- Closing out the second tier are Sonny Gray and Noah Syndergaard. Gray had his curveballs return last start and I’m crossing my fingers the feel will be there for the foreseeable future, while Syndergaard is a “Toby” type granted the gift of the Reds on the road.
- Kicking off the third tier is Jake Odorizzi as our streaming pick of the day. He hasn’t been quite as sharp as we’d like over his last two starts, but the Pirates are a welcome respite and make for a solid chance at a Win.
- I almost went with Drew Smyly instead of Odorizzi as he gets a date with the Cardinals. Ultimately, he has a tougher chance at a win with “The Bear” opposing him & the Cardinals are a tougher crew to deal with. That said, as long as the hook is staying low and he can elevate his heater, Smyly could excel once again.
- There’s also Roansy Contreras to consider after earning double-digit whiffs with his slider in his return from the minors. He’s a riskier play than the other two, though, as he’s a bit of a “Cherry Bomb” at the moment. It may be wise to sit this out and wait for the next one against the Brewers.
- In the bottom tier, Eric Lauer just had a date with the Dodgers where he barely got out without damage and now is being tasked to do it again. At least he had his 94 mph heater last time and he could build on it, but I wouldn’t take the chance.
- Domingo Germán and Daniel Lynch are both interesting options as well, though Domingo hasn’t found a proper groove yet and now has to face the tough Mets offense. Meanwhile, Lynch hasn’t clicked with his slider and four-seamer yet and the White Sox are a bit better against southpaws.
- I can see some favoring Adam Oller or Tucker Davidson against a pair of paltry offenses on Monday and I’m not fully ruling them out. That said, their ceilings are limited – these are ERA plays across about five frames – and with such low floors, it doesn’t make for a good spin of the wheel.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- I’m going to slightly be adjusting how I treat the tiers moving forward, essentially moving more pitchers away from the bottom tier and pushing guys up into more tiers. The idea is I recognize how managers are going to start guys like Adam Wainwright and Corey Kluber in the heavy majority of leagues and there’s no point pushing them down.
- In the same way, the Probable Start tier should be exactly that – guys that are near a 50/50 but I’m favoring letting them fly. That opens the door for the Questionable Start tier to be truly Questionable, creating a tier that separates from the obvious “please don’t start these guys” in the bottom tier.
- With that out of the way, the auto-start tier is massive but would be in old circumstances as well with it being ace day n all. If you have worries about Pablo López against the Athletics, rid yourself of those negative thoughts. You deserve better than that and just start the man.
- In the second tier, Ranger Suárez and Mike Clevinger get the nod from me with their matchups. Ranger gets the lovely Reds team away from Cincy and could be on another late-season stretch of brilliance. Clevinger is a bit more contentious with his breakers failing to come through since his return from injury, and I’m still favoring a start against the middling Guardians offense.
- The streaming pick of the day can be found in the second tier with Nick Lodolo against the Phillies. He’s a “Cherry Bomb”, which may return anxiety for managers as there is a decent chance of this going poorly against the Phillies. That said, he’s throwing plenty of strikes and has the stuff to come through for trusting managers, making him similar to the other streaming options but with a much higher ceiling.
- The third tier begins with Aaron Civale and Ross Stripling. Civale has a monster curveball against the Tigers last week and while the Padres should be much more of a challenge, he’s still more considerable than the options below.
- As for Stripling, he’s fresh off a dominant 71-pitch performance against the Orioles and could carry it over against the Red Sox. I don’t love it – I’m not sure I buy the small sample and the Red Sox are dangerous – but I can see it working out & if it goes well, you have a strong option against the Angels after.
- Other arms to consider in the third tier are Austin Voth, José Suarez, and JT Brubaker. Voth is on a hot stretch including a takedown of the Jays last time out, though I don’t trust the stuff as a true force down the stretch. Suárez has had moments of bliss and against the Rays, there’s a chance it returns. As for Coffee Cakes, he had a brilliant outing last time on the bump, though Atlanta could mess him up quickly.
- The final name here is Frankie Montas as he faces the Mets. I heavily considered a slot in the bottom tier, but I won’t rule out things coming together for Montas as he wears a “TIARA”. Your call here completely, I’m leaning bench wherever I can.
- In the bottom tier, it’s truly names I’m avoiding everywhere these days. Zach Logue gets the horrid Marlins offense, but he’s been anything but stable recently and I’d hate to chance that.
- Matthew Liberatore is getting a start in the Cards-Cubs doubleheader, but we can’t expect anything magical here as he has yet to put it together. I hope we see that new slider and increased velocity, though.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)