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 10am – 12pm 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 (Updated 9/10):
Auto-Start – Just do it. Don’t overthink this, start the man. This includes “if I have them rostered, I’m starting them” pitchers.
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-not-elite pitcher or a weak lineup for a volatile arm. These pitchers have a 50% or greater chance of performing well in my view.
Questionable Start – Think of this tier as “I don’t want to start these pitchers in a vacuum, but you could do worse.” Streamers found in this tier are not pitchers I’m targeting and are only if you are in dire need of one. To play it safe with streaming, just start the Probably Start streamers.
Do Not Start – The reward is not worth the risk. Don’t do it. Seriously, these pitchers have a very slim chance of success or sometimes none at all.
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. Those in Yellow in the third tier and should be okay if you’re searching for something on a given day, but I don’t recommend streaming unless you’re in need. 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: 83-65
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s a marvelous top tier for Saturday, with Julio Urías and Lance Lynn stealing the top ranks. Max Fried has been a little shaky as of late, pushing him down to the #4 spot.
- Seeing Jack Flaherty all the way up to #6 in just his second start back may be alarming, but he tossed 91 pitches last time out while sitting 94 on the heater. He’s back and gets the Pirates, do you blame me?
- At the bottom we have Triston McKenzie and Pablo López facing two of the tougher opponents of the tier. I’d still rock McKenzie against the Twins and feel slightly better about it than Pablo against the Mets, and they each carry a higher ceiling than José Urquidy and Marcus Stroman, despite the harder challenge.
- Speaking of challenges, George Kirby and Blake Snell face mighty ones against Atlanta and Los Angeles on Saturday. I’m starting them both given their talent, though I understand your hesitancy in your playoffs. Good luck.
- The rest of the tier is a tough call as well. Carlos Carrasco should be in the top tier, but he barely threw in his return from the IL last time out and may be heavily limited against the Marlins + how effective is he going to be?
- Michael Wacha is on a roll, though his fastball velocity was down over a tick last time out. Orioles magic may get in the way here.
- We have a duel between Jameson Taillon and Corey Kluber and you can choose whatever side you like. I’m favoring Taillon due to the slightly easier time with the Rays lineup, but it can go either way.
- Our streaming pick of the day resides in the reluctant third tier with Jonathan Heasley. No, I’m not a fan of this (I’m not a fan of anyone in this tier), but it’s a right-hander against the Tigers. Be careful.
- I want to reiterate – the third tier = I don’t want to start them, but if you need to start someone, these guys are better than the defiantly “do not start” tier. That means I’d avoid Jordan Lyles against the Red Sox and Adrian Martinez against the White Sox, but there is a chance they pay dividends to trusting managers.
- Ranger Suárez has failed to come through with his Charmin soft schedule, which means a date with Natty Lite isn’t as pleasant as you’d think.
- The rest of the tier is awfully shaky. I don’t trust Matt Manning’s slider, Chris Archer’s ceiling is capped at five frames, JT Brubaker has good breakers but gets the Cardinals, and do we ever really want to rely on Adrian Houser, even against the Reds?
- Please avoid the bottom tier entirely. Always do that, but especially on Saturday.
- Note that the Padres and Dodgers could have rainouts with the tropical storm hitting soon. Monitor it through the weekend.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- In the top tier, I’ve elected to place Zac Gallen fourth as he continues his goal of making history with six straight scoreless games starts under his belt…even if it’s inside Coors. For what it’s worth, he’s performed well in Coors in his career. Go figure.
- The bottom two are Brady Singer and José Quintana as they face the Tigers and Pirates, respectively. I don’t see a reason not to start them in these wonderful matchups.
- In the second tier, I loved what I saw from Jesús Luzardo against the Phillies last time out, though the Mets are a tougher foe and elicits a touch of hesitation. I’m very likely still doing it, but I understand situations where you’d want to hold back.
- On the other side is Taijuan Walker as he gets the Marlins. It seems perfect…except he just stumbled against the Pirates and may not be 100% healthy. Something to think about.
- I’m still starting Andrew Heaney despite allowing HRs galore last time out. The ceiling is simply too high.
- Our streaming pick of the day is Wade Miley as he faces the Giants. It’s a weak offense and Miley is stretched out enough to go 5-6 frames with ease. It’s not my favorite stream, but a definitive step up from those in the third tier.
- Speaking of which, Joe Musgrove leads the third tier as he faces the Dodgers. I debated this spot a lot considering his struggles as of late and the powerful Dodgers offense, ending up at the top of a tier that I’m not starting guys 50% of the time. Be careful here.
- Jake Odorizzi is coming back from a skipped start due to the arm fatigue, making it a risky proposition against the Mariners. I’d wait a start before going back in on Odorizzi.
- I love Kyle Bradish’s slider, but I’m concerned for his heater and the Red Sox could punish him. I’d hold off on Bradish until he gets the Tigers in two starts.
- There’s a chance Martín Pérez has a bit more magic left in the tank, but him and the rest of the third tier are awfully questionable. These are bad matchups from Toby types and I’d just avoid wherever possible.
- Yes, that includes Cole Irvin, Marco Gonzales, Rich Hill, and Mitch Keller. Such risky propositions, but I understand that on a desperate Sunday, you’re looking for pitchers who could go six frames and they are a step above the bottom tier.
- That bottom tier begins with Aníbal Sánchez who could be grouped with Keller, but I just don’t buy his recent success in the slightest. It’s a low ceiling with a terrible floor. Not for me.
- There’s a slim chance for Justin Dunn to have his best breaker and survive against the Brewers, but he’s not nearly ready to give you a reasonable shot at success. He needs more time.
- You see the Royals and think Tyler Alexander is a decent bet to stream on Sunday. It’s not decent at all – it’s minimal and too small to risk it.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)
When are you going to learn that
Miles Mikolas is a bad pitcher,
on the road ? When you call him an auto-start, you lose all credibility.
But it was @ **PIT** so it seemed fine, but eeesh. It’s just hard to understand how he is so bad on the road – and consistently bad, year after year. Oh well, next up is a home game vs CIN, so he should dominate. And then it will be time to drop him because the following TWO starts are road games (@SD then @LAD or @MLW).