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: 67-49
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Plenty of aces to go around on Tuesday and I’m leading with Shohei Ohtani as he should make easy work of the Athletics. Top nods could easily go to Zack Wheeler or Shane Bieber as well, but Ohtani has been that good and faces one of the worst crews around.
- We all know the Gerrit Cole situation, but don’t forget he earned 23 whiffs and a 40% CSW in that same Mariners start last time out. He’ll be fine.
- In the second tier, the likes of Marcus Stroman, Carlos Carrasco, and José Urquidy each have favorable matchups and should be free to go in your leagues. Carrasco and Stroman lead the tier with starts against the Reds on the road and Natty Lite, though Urquidy falls closer to the end of the tier with a date against the slightly tougher Rangers.
- Lance Lynn also gets a favorable start against the Royals and I hope he can continue the momentum gathered in his previous outing with four-seamers and cutters. All that’s missing is consistency before we can push him into the top tier.
- Four arms are facing strong offenses who would normally sit in the top tier. Julio Urías gets the Twins and hopefully still has 94+ mph on the heater, Charlie Morton has been a touch volatile and facing a potentially dangerous Red Sox offense, and Luis Castillo faces the Yankees for the second straight start – hopefully he can escape without a Careful, Icarus this time.
- The last slinger is Martín Pérez as he faces the Astros. He’s already fared well against them this year, but he sits at the bottom of the tier given his lower strikeout ceiling. It’s a bit of a worrying matchup, but I think you have to follow the Vargas Rule.
- I’ve been digging Braxton Garrett’s slider, though the Phillies can put runs on the board quickly + I’m not completely sold on the rest of Garrett’s arsenal. I’m leaning start, but it’s close.
- The streaming pick of the day is James Kaprielian as he faces the Angels. Dueling against Ohtani isn’t fun, but Kap should help more than hurt against the depleted Los Angeles lineup.
- It’s a tough call for the bottom three of the Questionable Start tier – do we slot all of them in the bottom tier or leave them here? I see all three as 50/50 plays with Miles Mikolas heading to Coors, Alex Cobb facing the improved Padres bats, and Brady Singer hoping to rebound against the White Sox. It could go wrong for all three, but I’m favoring Mikolas’ improbable season above the others (and 95 mph velocity in his last start!).
- Joe Ryan is in a very similar situation as he faces the Dodgers and I’m sure some are shocked to see him down here after his dominance against the Tigers. Ryan’s slider has been wonky for a bit and without that weapon, I believe the Dodgers will give him a tough time, making it less than a coin flip in my view.
- The Fratty Pirate may be able to steal another Win against the Orioles, though I generally dislike trusting Ryan Yarbrough. Don’t expect more than five frames and let’s hope he doesn’t mess up your week doing so.
- The rest of the tier is rough. There’s a chance some of these work out, but you simply don’t want to chance it. Maybe Paolo Espino finally goes 80+ pitches and performs well against a weak Cubs crew? Or Rich Hill squeaks by against Atlanta despite their history of crushing lefties? This ain’t it y’all.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- Just four atop the rankings on Wednesday, with an interesting debate between Sandy Alcantara and Justin Verlander for the #1 spot. Verlander has gone 6+ IP and 1 or fewer ER across his last seven starts, but then again it is Sandy.
- The real consideration was Kyle Wright landing in the first or second tier as he faces a solid Red Sox lineup. His success depends highly on his curveball on a given day and while it wasn’t at its best last time, I’d trust a rebound here.
- The second tier is dicier than usual. The first three are expected, though, with Nestor Cortes and Robbie Ray squaring off (and I’m favoring the one not facing the Yankee offense) plus Patrick Sandoval facing the lowly Athletics offense. You’re very likely starting these guys.
- However, the final five bring hesitation. José Berríos hasn’t rebounded as I anticipated, but the Orioles aren’t a team to turn away. Jeffrey Springs is looking more like his May self and could perform well in Milwaukee. And Sean Manaea may very well benefit not facing the Dodgers with his improved changeup, but it could be dicey.
- The final two are even tougher. Yes, Taijuan Walker faces a poor Reds offense in Citi Field, but he hasn’t looked the same across his last three starts. I’m worried he’ll continue the downward spiral, even with the great matchup.
- As for Noah Syndergaard, he deserves the second tier spot with a date against the Marlins, but we can’t forget his struggles against Natty Lite last time out. The floor is still much lower than we’d like it to be.
- In the third tier, it’s tough deciding between Josiah Gray or Justin Steele. Josiah has the higher ceiling, while I’ve found myself enamored by Steele’s slider, which holds a super low 13% hard contact for the year. He’s my streaming pick of the day because of it and while you shouldn’t anticipate 10 strikeouts again, this could very well work out in his favor against Natty Lite.
- Other streams to consider are, well, the rest of this tier. Johnny Cueto, Madison Bumgarner, and Paul Blackburn are all Toby types with the former cruising with his veteran magic, Bumgarner getting the Pirates, and the latter hoping for a rebound to his recent downward trend as he faces the weak Angels.
- Don’t overlook the return of Aaron Civale as he faces the Tigers. It’s the Tigers, the worst offense in the majors against right-handers. I think that allows Civale to avoid a full Still ILL situation.
- And hey, Mitch Keller has found a way to make it work as of late, even if the strikeouts are hard to come by. If you’re in need of a decent ERA, he could make it work against the Sneks.
- In the bottom tier, I’m avoiding Sonny Gray and José Quintana in some terrible matchups. Sonny’s breakers haven’t clicked yet and the Dodgers could mess him up in a hurry, while Quintana has to deal with Coors. You don’t want to start Quintana in Coors.
- Kris Bubic has had a nice mini-run as of late against good offenses, though I’m not ready to commit to him against the lefty-mashing White Sox. Chase it if you like, I think the horrendous floor is still present while the chances of hitting the ceiling are slim.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)