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: 85-66
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- We have a whole lot of pitchers going with a pair of doubleheaders, helping pad our top tier with ten pitchers on Tuesday. I debated the ranks of Gerrit Cole and Sandy Alcantara given their trends in opposite directions and either way, you’re starting them. Let’s hope they both bring it.
- Joe Ryan sneaks in at the bottom as he faces the Royals. If you have him, you start him, even after a tough time against the Yankees last time out.
- In the second tier, Michael Kopech kicks off a cushy two-start week with Rockie Road and should be started. I wouldn’t say he’s 100% after his knee injury, but easily good enough to warrant the start against a poor offense.
- Hunter Brown would be the streaming pick of the day…if he weren’t already swooped up in over 20% of leagues. Let the kid fly against the Tigers after showcasing good velocity and wicked breakers – the command could still be a hindrance, but it’s worth it.
- That makes Bailey Falter our actual streaming pick of the day as he faces the Marlins once again. There’s a small chance it’s Zach Eflin instead as he comes off the IL, but if it’s Falter, I’m letting him loose.
- Dean Kremer is another streaming option against Natty Lite, right at the 20% threshold. I’m down for starting all the Orioles starters against the Nationals & Tigers for those two upcoming series and I suggest keeping them on your radar.
- I’m not sure what to do with Jeffrey Springs against the Jays as he may be a bit limited and endures a difficult lineup. That said, his changeup is still filthy and the skills justify the start where you have him. I don’t blame you for benching, though.
- In the third tier, I felt I couldn’t do Merrill Kelly dirty by slotting him under Luis Cessa (even though he could command that slider well against the Pirates), though I’d be extremely cautious starting Kelly against the Dodgers.
- The rest of the third tier contains José Suarez and Nick Pivetta. Suarez has had some recent success, though he’s been volatile throughout his career and it’s highly questionable if he can pull this one off.
- As for Pivetta, I don’t trust the man’s command in the slightest and the Yankee bats are starting to wake up. Don’t do this unless you have to.
- The final tier is a long one and I’d avoid it all completely wherever possible. The most intriguing arm is Ken Waldichuk in his third MLB start as he faces the Rangers. I haven’t seen enough from his repertoire to urge a start, though the stuff is intriguing and if he finds his command, it can work.
- Kris Bubic has been pushing up his velocity and there’s a chance it carries him to six frames against the Twins. It’s a slim chance, though, and he could damage your numbers dramatically upon failure.
- Do I really want to trust Chad Kuhl outside of Coors? That Kuhl WHIP is bound to hurt even if he piles up some strikeouts.
- Or do we hope for Jakob Junis to have his elite slider and carry him through five frames against a strong Atlanta team? The options are terrible down here and I’d target future days instead.
- Updates: It’s Mitch White and Yonny Chirinos going for the Jays and Rays, respectively. I expect little from each, and they still remain in the bottom tier.
- NOTE: Just as I was publishing this, news came out that Alek Manoah is not starting Game 1. There’s still a chance he’s starting Game 2, so I haven’t changed anything, but monitor that situation heavily. UPDATE: He has a stomach bug and could be available for Game 2.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- The top half is your straightforward “duh” starts, the bottom is a little more questionable. It’s hard to deny Nick Lodolo with his fantastic run against the Pirates, and the bottom three have been solid enough to start against middling opponents. Sidenote: Did you realize Patrick Sandoval has a sub 2.00 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP across his last seven games?
- Yes, that includes Adam Wainwright despite his recent disappointments. If you have him, you’re doing this.
- Note there’s a chance Dustin May pitches for the Dodgers on Wednesday. If so, he’d be placed between Patrick Sandoval and Adam Wainwright in the Auto-Start tier.
- The second tier begins with Ross Stripling as he’s carried a lovely changeup this year. He’s arguably in the top tier, though Tampa’s offense has improved with the return of Franco.
- Roansy Contreras is our streaming pick of the day as he heads into Cincinnati. The slider is legit and he does enough with his heater to make this worthwhile.
- I have my concerns with Nestor Cortes against the Red Sox. He’ll likely hover 75 pitches in this one, capping his ceiling, and we’ll likely still some rust, meaning his stellar command is likely to be missing. That said, it’s still worthwhile to toss him out there and produce for roughly five frames.
- It’s hard to deny Drew Rasmussen a chance to dominate after killing it with his cutter as of late, even if it’s the Jays. I’m still tossing him against the strong offense.
- The bottom tier arms are heavily in question. David Peterson hasn’t been as sharp recently and there’s even a chance the Mets go with Trevor Williams instead. If Peterson does start, he’ll rack up the Ks against the Cubs and should be slotted into your lineups.
- Kyle Gibson hasn’t taken advantage of his easy schedule as we hoped, but it’s the Marlins. I think you have to do this.
- The top two of the third tier could be pushed up and out of the tier. Mike Clevinger hasn’t had his breakers, but he may still have enough to give you 5-6 quality frames against the Mariners.
- And Cal Quantrill, despite his lack of electricity, could come through like the good ole days against Ohtani + Trout & Friends.
- I wish Drew Smyly were facing an easier squad, but a start against the Mets makes me want to be conservative on Wednesday. He gets a great schedule after, so hold through it.
- Dane Dunning is an interesting option as he faces a weak Oakland lineup, but I’d rather not chance it. I don’t think Dunning does enough to make the reward worth the risk.
- If you’re in dire need of something, I can see Zack Greinke or JP Sears coming through for 5/6 frames. It’s a low chance, though, and I’d avoid unless you’re searching for innings.
- In the bottom tier, I wish I could start Tyler Wells, but we don’t know how stretched out he is, nor do I buy that he’s back to his prime self after just one game off the IL.
- As for Brayan Bello, he’s the last legitimate option in these ranks as we’ve seen moments of legitimate upside. That said, the Yankee offense is heating up and this is too dangerous of a start to chase.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)
You don’t like Dustin May tonight?
Also curious on your thoughts on Dustin May tonight- thanks Nick!