|Pitcher||Why They Missed The Cut|
|Anthony DeSclafani||He couldn’t even handle the Pirates. The magic is gone.|
|Danny Duffy||Not the worst option and one of the last off The List|
|Daniel Norris||There isn’t enough upside to chase this|
|Marco Gonzales||His repertoire isn’t working right now, there just isn’t enough to chase|
|Gio Gonzalez||On the IL with “dead arm” – He’s a Toby|
|Caleb Smith||On the IL with hip injury – Top 20/30 arm|
|Domingo German||On the IL with hip flexor injury – Top 30 arm|
|Jordan Lyles||On the IL with a hamstring injury – Top 60/70 arm|
|Matt Strahm||On the IL with rib strain – Top 50/60 arm|
|Carlos Carrasco||On the IL with a blood issue – Top 15/25 arm|
|Corey Kluber||On the IL with a forearm injury – Top 10 arm|
|Jameson Taillon||On the IL with an elbow injury – Top 25 SP|
|Tyler Glasnow||On the IL with forearm strain – “4-6 weeks”|
|Luke Weaver||On the IL with a forearm strain – would be around the low 30s|
|Trevor Williams||He’ll be back around the 50s/60s when back from the IL with a side strain|
|Clay Buchholz||Isn’t cutting it as a Toby|
|Drew Pomeranz||K upside is interesting, but low IPS and too low of a ceiling.|
|Jake Junis||Too volatile to trust despite a tinge of strikeout upside|
|Dereck Rodriguez||A Toby who hasn’t helped enough to justify his ranking|
|Nick Margevicius||Looks more like a Cup of Schmo than a rosterable arm|
|Luis Severino||The recent injury news sets him back to July 1st, hopefully. He’ll be Top 15 then.|
|Mike Clevinger||His injury has Clev out until June/July. He’ll be Top 20 then.|
|Nathan Eovaldi||Hit the IL with an elbow injury. When starting again, he’ll be 40/50s|
|Touki Toussaint||Touki has been demoted to Triple-A|
|Alex Wood||I’m just going to wait until he’s back to properly rank him. Most likely in the 50s.|
|Jhoulys Chacin||Even his recent stretch isn’t worth the floor|
|Justus Sheffield||Good stash option, but not as good as the others|
|Dallas Keuchel||I’ll add him when he’s confirmed to start – Top 70/80 arm|
|Michael Wacha||Let’s see how he performs in the rotation again and if it lasts.|
|Vince Velasquez||Moved to the bullpen|
|Ivan Nova||Just not enough upside and while he’s a decent streamer, it’s never for a high ceiling.|
What is happening!
It’s another week and another edition of the Top 100 Starting Pitchers for Fantasy Baseball.
Before I dive into the player notes, here’s an outline of how I’m handling The List this season:
- Previous/Best/Worst columns removed
- These took a heavy chunk of loading time and ultimately provided very little value. The change arrows themselves are all that’s needed
- Tiers added
- As much as I hate making tiers (When do they start and end? How big are the cliffs?), ya’ll have been asking for them and I’m here for all of you. Please understand how hard it is to accurately place them and don’t get too worked up about it.
- Labels added
- There’s often confusion as to why a pitcher is a spot or two above or below another. These labels should help understand what each pitcher brings to the table, showing that some pitchers may be better or worse for what you need.
- Hover over them (or tap on mobile) to see each label’s name next to the pitcher.
- Ratio Focused = Their value lies in you chasing their ERA/WHIP more than strikeouts and Wins.
- Toby = Boring arm that doesn’t excite you, but you stare at the waiver wire and accept that he just okay enough. You don’t like that he’s around the office, but he gets his work done.
- Cherry Bomb = Volatile pitchers who are either “super sweet” or “blow up in your face.” Heed warning.
- Ace Potential = I define an ace as: 3.40 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 24% K rate, 6.0 IPS. It’s why you see some surprising names as having the upside of an ace.
- Fringe Starters added
- There are always a handful of starters I badly want to add to The List but I don’t have enough room. I’ll always have this table at the end for a collection of starters – in no order – that I also heavily considered, as well as why they could be relevant
- This will be where IL Players will land. I’ll mention where they would slot when healthy.
Please let me know how you feel about these changes and I’m looking forward to another fun year assessing the wonderful entity that is the SP Landscape.
On to the notes! Remember, these ranks are for 12-teamers in H2H categories leagues.
- UPDATE: Anibal Sanchez should be on The List. He’d be placed around 75/80.
- I gave a drop to both Trevor Bauer and Patrick Corbin, while raising Jacob deGrom and Walker Buehler. Nothing really to add, I expect many complaints here. Bauer could jump back up quickly.
- With Caleb Smith, Domingo German, and Carlos Carrasco heading to the IL, 70%+ of The List gained an easy three spots. Keep that in mind.
- Mike Soroka got some love as he continues to be a stud ratio wise. I question his longevity this season and if he can hit a 25% strikeout rate, but he deserved a push up the ranks.
- Tier four is the interesting one with plenty of fun arms getting boosts. I’m loving what Andrew Heaney is doing, even with the 5 ER game. Kyle Hendricks is doing better than you’d think, Frankie Montas, Mike Minor, and Jake Odorizzi each deserve a ton of love as well.
- I really struggled to mark the Tiers for six/seven/eight/nine as there is a clear break around the mid-40s to the rest of the SP pool. Remember, it’s about chasing upside and at the moment a lot of possible studs are disappointing except for…
- …Well I didn’t expect raising Nick Pivetta this much, but man I just don’t like the options in the 50s these days, making it worth it to chase Pivetta more than I anticipated. This is still very risky and I’d be selling if someone is buying, but who knows, maybe, just maybe this is the turning point for Pivetta I’ve been waiting over a year to see.
- Steven Matz, Lance Lynn, and Pablo Lopez are pitching like their best selves at the moment, forcing my hand to push them up The List. No reason not to be going with them over the options behind them in 12-teamers as the late 60s and beyond are close to replacement level.
- Joining The List this week are Zach Eflin (back from injury), Peter Lambert (maybe the skill set is real?), Dylan Bundy (shockingly good month), Framber Valdez (Cherry Bomb but maybe it’s a good stretch in June), Jason Vargas (Vargas Rule n all), John Means and Mike Fiers (streaming options), Michael Pineda (return from injury), and Adrian Sampson (is his slider really that good now?).
(Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)
Think you forgot Domingo German in the fringe starters
I did! Thanks for the catch.
Always the most anticipated post of the week.
Hey Nick, thanks for the work. Just want to make sure I’m reading this list right, you would take Charlie Morton over Noah Syndergaard ROS?
Yay, I’m helping! Love your guys stuff by the way, keep up the good work
It’s always easier to comment on “I think you got this guy wrong”… but I can’t find much to argue about. Great job. Thanks for putting in the work every week.
Where would Mitch Keller be if he was up?
Is it fair to call what Hendricks has been doing a sort of Spiderman+ level right now? He’s been so consistent, great ratios and more strikeouts than you’d expect from him, but because of the Ks hes not gonna be an Ace.
Is Spiderman plus even underselling his performance?
The thing is, with how many IP/S he’s going, the low strikeout rate plays up a bit too. Hendricks’ K/9 is about 1.4 lower than Walker Buehler, but he only trails him by 4 Ks in the same number of starts because Hendricks has pitched 8.2 more innings. His ability to go deep into games this year (largely a product of his efficiency) has been a nice asset for a guy who otherwise lags in Ks.
Thoughts on Valdez?
You are dying on that hill with Skaggs, eh?
He’s been a true disappointment. Skaggs is one of those guys that isn’t exactly blowing you up, but isn’t really helping either. Hard to drop Skaggs for what is on the waiver wire.
No Cal Q love?
Just read a bunch of scouting reports on Peter Lambert going back to when he was drafted 44th overall in 2015 out of high school. He was always the youngest guy in his minor league and dominated AA. He struggled in AAA but was 5 years younger than the average player there. He is known for his command of his 4 pitches. He locates his 91-95 MPH fastball well in all 4 corners and has a plus changeup and plus curveball according to John Sickels. It seems like he is the type of guy who gets by with good command of his pitches, sequencing and just knowing how to pitch. I’m going to give him a whirl. Can’t be much worse than what I’ve gotten out of Eickhoff for the last month.
The simple fact that he plays for the Rockies is enough for me to have zero interest. I have never seen him pitch but on the surface he looks like Antonio Senzatela – solid stuff and command, good GB rate, low K rate, COL. Most COL starters look like that actually and they come and go.
Hendricks should be top 20, maybe top 15 imo. There’s a reason he consistently outperforms ERA estimators, and its weak contact. Similar to Kershaw, his babip should be expected to be around .270 – .280
Why did you go and have to make Soroka the Madden poster boy? What did he do to you?
There goes the ERA to 4.00!
Fantastic. Ryu is pitching like a Cy young over weeks, is probably the best effin pitcher on earth right now and he gets rewarded with a slip. Goes down 1 place. Great!
Fiers may not blow you away with his stuff but he’s been impressive since his no hitter. Results are all that matter no?
Weird to see some of those guys in the top 35 but I agree. So many of last years rising stars have disappointed so far that you have to value the Minors and Odorizzi’s of the world.
Wondering where Daniel Hudson would be, maybe you forgot him. I think he’s at least top 100
Has anyone seen any news on Weaver or an updated timeline?
For fantasy purposes it would be nice if you guys threw together this list and included things like era fip xfip Sierra. It would allow us to examine pitchers that are good trade targets. If not I’ll do it myself I suppose.
Thanks for the suggestion!
We don’t have an internal stats database, so crafting that would take a long time for me every week. Also, I wonder if it might make the List look a bit too cluttered.
Something to consider in the future!