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: 97-70
Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- It’s a smaller slate but even smaller top tier for Thursday with Shohei Ohtani and Carlos Rodón at the top. Rodón was obviously impacted last start by either his cracked nail or extra rest and we have to hope he’s past the bump in the road by now.
- Andrew Heaney is expected to have an opener on Thursday, which makes him more appealing than usual.
- Between Jeffrey Springs and Jon Gray, take your pick. I’m leaning Springs as the changeup has been that good and the Guardians aren’t as frightening as the Jays.
- Jon Gray also had a bit of a stumble with his stuff last time out, featuring fewer slider whiffs and a tick down in velocity. He’s still a clear start and I’m hoping it was just a blip.
- I made one swap from Monday’s list – I swapped Braxton Garrett and Lucas Giolito as I’m feeling a touch more confident in our streaming pick of the day having his slider vs. the wonky velocity and changeup of Giolito against a tough Twins offense.
- Ending the second tier are a pair of Toby arms in Marco Gonzales and Cal Quantrill. I don’t love em, but it’s in your best interest to start em.
- With Eric Lauer tossing 66 pitches last time out, he could flirt with 80 against the Marlins and produce for your fantasy squads. That said, he’s been inconsistent through the year and even getting enough volume doesn’t guarantee success for Lauer – even against Miami.
- The trio of Eduardo Rodriguez, Ranger Suárez, and Cole Irvin do not give me any excitement, though against pedestrian offenses, I wager at least one of them will come through for trusting managers. Good luck picking the right one.
- The final name of the tier is Javier Assad as he faces the Phils. I don’t love this play and I have him here as a recognition that if his cutter comes through, he could coast through six frames. It’s a big IF, though, and even if he gets the cutter working, the Phils are capable of taking advantage of his mistakes.
- The bottom tier begins with the return of Nathan Eovaldi in a clear Still ILL scenario. I have no idea what we’ll see or how long he’ll go (3.0 IP and 57 pitches in his last rehab start) and you’re better off waiting to make a better decision next week.
- As for the rest of them, I refuse to start Jonathan Heasley after he was trounced by the Tigers the last time he faced them. It’s a decent dart throw, but that floor has me just avoiding it all together.
Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
- The Mets have adjusted their rotation to feature Jacob deGrom on Friday against the Mets (vs. Max Fried, no less) and it’s gonna be a doozy. It does make him now in line for the final Wednesday start should the Mets need to win that game to ensure a NL East title. It does mean Chris Bassitt’s last start will be this Sunday – keep that in mind for those with him rostered.
- The top half of the ranks are clear as day, the bottom four is a bit different. Jack Flaherty hasn’t had that start yet, but looked better last time and now gets the Pirates. That’s good enough for me.
- I still have questions about Joe Ryan’s secondary stuff but he gets the Tigers. The Tigers. Start him because duh.
- Merrill Kelly is starting Friday and is a clear option + Alex Cobb survived the gauntlet against the Dodgers and Padres, he should have an easier time against the Sneks.
- The second tier leads with Brady Singer who can be a bit of a Cherry Bomb, but has been more sweet than sour. There will always be some risk, it’s one you have to take.
- Our streaming pick of the day is Bailey Falter despite getting walloped by Atlanta in his last start. The Nationals are a far easier squad and Bailey has come through against weak lineups across the last month.
- The final two of the tier are Domingo Germán and José Urquidy. Germán has a good enough curveball to make it a worthwhile day against the Orioles while Urquidy rebounded last time out and could come through against the Rays.
- The third tier is a bit ragged. I’m not sure what to make of Drew Rasmussen against the Astros and would prefer to sit this one out completely.
- We have Zach Plesac returning from the IL in what is mostly a Still ILL, though he appears to be stretched out and now faces the pedestrian Royals offense. Consider him if you’re searching for innings.
- Graham Ashcraft returned from the IL last start and pumped 99 mph cutters. Now he gets the Cubs and there’s hope he can be a benefit to your team…or have the wonky command return and put it up in flames.
- I really don’t want to trust Glenn Otto or Johan Oviedo in their matchups, either. Otto’s breakers have been wildly inconsistent while Oviedo’s excellent outing last time was an exception and it’s unlikely he’ll repeat the peak against a dangerous Cardinals offense.
- And who the h*ck is starting for the Cubs?? It still lists Wade Miley, but the only report I see is him “having a catch” on Tuesday after an apparent oblique injury removed him from his previous start. I think it’s probably best just to avoid this.
- In the do not start tier, Nick Pivetta is now going today instead of tomorrow and I’ve moved him down a tier. He’s too dang risky on your ratios without enough of a ceiling, especially against the Jays.
- I know Austin Voth just came through, but the Yankees are heating up and this is sure to be a challenging start. I don’t think it’s in your best interest here as I imagine Voth doesn’t have the longest of leashes.
- The rest of ’em are clear avoids. I don’t think you need me to tell you Davis Martin can’t be trusted (two first names!) or Drew Hutchison has a horrendous floor against the Twins.
Featured Image by Drew Wheeler (@drewisokay on Twitter)