The List 6/17 – Ranking The Top 100 Starting Pitchers Every Week

The List

Rank Change Pitcher Labels
1 T1 - Max Scherzer
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
2 - Justin Verlander
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
3 - Chris Sale
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
4 +1 Gerrit Cole
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
5 +1 Jacob deGrom
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
6 -2 Blake Snell
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
7 T2 - Luis Castillo
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
8 - Zack Greinke
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
9 +6 Hyun-Jin Ryu
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
10 - Trevor Bauer
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
11 -2 Stephen Strasburg
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
12 -1 Clayton Kershaw
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
13 -1 Walker Buehler
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Playing Time Question
14 +2 Charlie Morton
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
15 UR Mike Clevinger
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
16 T3 -2 James Paxton
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
17 - David Price
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
18 - Matt Boyd
Aces Gonna Ace
Strikeout Upside
19 +2 Lucas Giolito
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
20 -1 Jose Berrios
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Cherry Bomb
21 T4 -1 Aaron Nola
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
22 +4 Shane Bieber
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Cherry Bomb
23 +6 Frankie Montas
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
24 +3 Andrew Heaney
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
25 -12 Patrick Corbin
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
26 +4 Mike Minor
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
27 -5 Mike Soroka
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Playing Time Question
Ratio Focused
28 -3 Zack Wheeler
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
29 T5 +4 Jake Odorizzi
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Toby
30 +6 Rich Hill
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Playing Time Question
31 +7 Brandon Woodruff
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
32 -1 Madison Bumgarner
Ace Potential
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
33 +8 Kenta Maeda
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Playing Time Question
34 - Jack Flaherty
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
35 +7 Griffin Canning
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Playing Time Question
36 +7 Kyle Gibson
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
37 +7 Cole Hamels
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
38 T6 -6 Max Fried
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Playing Time Question
Ratio Focused
39 -4 German Marquez
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
40 -3 Masahiro Tanaka
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
41 -1 Robbie Ray
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
42 +3 Nick Pivetta
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
43 +16 Yonny Chirinos
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
44 +2 Wade Miley
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
45 +6 Eduardo Rodriguez
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
46 +1 Sonny Gray
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Cherry Bomb
Ratio Focused
47 +5 Yu Darvish
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
48 +17 Lance Lynn
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
49 +13 Zach Eflin
Strikeout Upside
Toby
Ratio Focused
50 -11 Mike Foltynewicz
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
51 T7 -3 Tyler Skaggs
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
52 +8 Steven Matz
Strikeout Upside
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
53 -3 Joey Lucchesi
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
54 -1 Jose Quintana
Injury Risk
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
55 +2 Jon Lester
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
56 -7 Spencer Turnbull
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
57 +7 Pablo Lopez
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
58 +20 Framber Valdez
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
59 UR Trevor Williams
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
60 UR Anibal Sanchez
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
61 UR Mitch Keller
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
62 -8 Brad Peacock
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Playing Time Question
63 +9 Julio Teheran
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
64 -8 J. A. Happ
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
65 -4 Zach Plesac
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Streaming Option
66 T8 -11 Joe Musgrove
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
67 -9 Miles Mikolas
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
68 +13 Adrian Sampson
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
69 -6 Chris Archer
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
70 -4 Tyler Mahle
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
71 -2 Jimmy Nelson
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Stash Option
72 UR Matt Strahm
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
73 -3 Trevor Richards
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
74 +15 Merrill Kelly
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
75 +15 Martin Perez
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
76 T9 -5 Zach Davies
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
77 -4 Jon Gray
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
78 -1 Dylan Bundy
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
79 - Jason Vargas
Quality Starts
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
80 - Jose Suarez
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
81 +2 Rick Porcello
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
82 +2 Marcus Stroman
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Cherry Bomb
Toby
Ratio Focused
83 +9 John Means
Playing Time Question
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
84 +12 Michael Pineda
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
85 -17 Chris Bassitt
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Streaming Option
86 -12 Peter Lambert
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Streaming Option
87 T10 -5 Felix Pena
Strikeout Upside
Low Ips
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
88 -2 Tanner Roark
Toby
Streaming Option
89 UR Tommy Milone
Strikeout Upside
Cherry Bomb
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
90 -3 Jake Arrieta
Quality Starts
Toby
Ratio Focused
91 -3 Freddy Peralta
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
92 -1 Reynaldo Lopez
Strikeout Upside
Quality Starts
Cherry Bomb
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
93 - Trent Thornton
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Streaming Option
94 - Mike Fiers
Toby
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
95 UR Sandy Alcantara
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Streaming Option
96 UR Elieser Hernandez
Playing Time Question
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
97 UR Jordan Yamamoto
Playing Time Question
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
98 T11 -74 Chris Paddack
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Ratio Focused
Stash Option
99 -1 Dylan Cease
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Stash Option
100 -1 Zac Gallen
Ace Potential
Strikeout Upside
Playing Time Question
Stash Option

Labels Legend

Aces Gonna Ace
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low IPS
Quality Starts
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Toby
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
Stash Option

 

Fringe Starters

 

Pitcher Why They Missed The Cut
Jesus Luzardo He’s at #101 for stashes. Still a few weeks away to get stretched out.
Alex Reyes He’s at #102 for stashes. I really didn’t want to cut anyone else this week.
CC Sabathia The legit last one off. Just isn’t doing enough in a 12-teamer.
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
Noah Syndergaard On the IL with a hamstring injury – Top 30 arm
Kyle Hendricks On the IL with a shoulder injury – Top 30 arm
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
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
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.
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 arm
Michael Wacha Not sold yet that he’s worth your time now that he’s back in the rotation
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.
    • TobyBoring 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.

 

Player Notes

 

  • Before I begin, I have to note how poor the SP Landscape is. Don’t look at the number, look at the pitchers relative to the ranking. It’s why guys like Joe Musgrove, Miles Mikolas, Max Friedand Matt Strahm are ranked higher than I believe their current ability would speak to in a vacuum.
  • Alright, alright. Hyun-Jin Ryu is now Top Ten, even with his ridiculous injury history. The man hasn’t given me a choice.
  • Mike Clevinger returns and I’M SO HAPPY. It also means 85% of pitchers got an automatic -1…but also a +1 for now being ahead of Chris Paddackwho I’ve placed as the #1 stash. I’ll keep him down there until he returns, where he’ll be Top 40 again, if not higher.
  • With the fastball command of Patrick Corbin eluding him, I have to lower him to the fourth tier as it’s everything to his approach. There’s obviously a chance he gets it back, but for now I need to bake in the possibility he fights it for a while.
  • Frankie Montas continues to climb with a strong pair of secondary pitches and an overpowering fastball. I couldn’t find a reason not to make him finally Top 25.
  • I served some hits to quite a few arms this week. Mike Soroka, Max Fried, German Marquez, Masahiro Tanaka, and Mike Foltynewicz all fell inside the Top 50. Nothing unexpected there save for Soroka, who showed us a look of what happens when his fastball command is off. I was hoping to see him get through the outing without it, but without elite secondary pitches, it lowers his floor a bit.
  • Seeing Yonny Chirinos get a locked rotation spot and not have an opener is a wonderful thing. He’s taken advantage and I have no choice but to raise him in the ranks.
  • Anibal Sanchez should have been here last week in the mid-70s and concluded a strong two-start week to elevate himself to Top 60. Here’s to hoping the Cutter sticks around.
  • I question his longevity, but I have to reward Framber Valdez for his strikeout ability and attacking batters in his two starts thus far.
  • Joining The List this week are a few surprises. Tommy Milone (six strikeouts or more in four of his five games!) and Sandy Alcantara (three strong starts in a row prior to the middling outing on Sunday) could be options in the short term, while Elieser Hernandez and Jordan Yamamoto have chances – slim chances, but still chances – at turning into decent 12-teamer value.
  • Yes, I too am shocked to see teammates Lance Lynn and Adrian Sampson rise. Lynn has been defying the odds with his fastball and cutter combination, while Sampson’s slider has been stupid good – ignore the start against the Sawx, you wouldn’t have started him there anyway. His ranking at #68 is surrounded by other arms who are matchup dependent as well.

(Photo by Justin Paradis – @FreshmeatComm)

Nick Pollack

Founder of PitcherList.com. Rotographs and Washington Post contributor and has worked with CBS Sports, Grantland, and SB Nation. Former pitching coach and Brandeis alum.

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Comments


Ryan

I’m keeping an eye on Fedde. I’d say there is a 50% chance he is on your list at the end of the season

Patrick

Would you trade Lo Cain for Pivetta? Or what tier could I target for him? I don’t like his peripherals and would be able to put Senzel in the OF when Scooter comes back.

Joe

Should I keep S Gray or Darvish now that Clevinger is back; with WHIP, Ks, total bases, Wins & Losses counting

Bane

If you needed pitching help and had an excess of hitting, who in the top four tiers would you be most aggressively trying to get in a trade? Conversely, who in the top four tiers are you selling before their value tanks?

Scott

Is strahm worth holding in a 12 team league (6 or 7 sp per team)? I gave him a pass for the Coors start, but Miami before did a number on him. He has mil next and then a 2 decent matchups if he stays on regular rest. I have some guys returning from the dl and need to make room over next week or so. Thx

Steven Corrado

also I think Brad Keller needs some Pitcher List love. He’s been really good over the last month. He’s showing why he was the 5th pick overall in ’17.

Geo

Keller has been marginal over 4 of his 5 last starts, while his 5 starts before that were pretty awful. He’s sporting a 6.10 K/9 and a 4.45 BB/9 to go with a 4.12 FIP despite a pretty lucky .274 BABIP. To be honest, he’s showing why he was an 8th round pick in 2013, not the 5th overall in 2017. That was Kyle Wright of Atlanta.

Mike

he was a rule 5 pick in 2017, that might be the confusion. He’s been better in his 3 June starts though. His walk rate is way down during those starts at least. I agree he doesn’t have much though.

Dean

What is interesting is back in February this site in the “Going Deep” section there was an article about Keller as a potential breakout because of his ability to tunnel pitches. If he can get his walks back to where it was last year he could be effective again as a pitcher. He will never have strikeouts but can be a source of Quality Starts, and ratios

Guest

He threw 136 innings last year between MLB and AAA and is 26. Plus the A’s plan to be competitive. I don’t think innings limits play into it much.

Ryan

Having some trouble deciding who to let go when Caleb comes off the DL. Pick one to let go. I’m actually leaning towards Caleb but extremely hesitant to do so.

– M Soroka
– R Hill
– M Minor
– C Smith

Mike

Great problem to have. If trading isn’t an option I’d lean Hill b/c of the injury history. Can also wait and see on Smith if the others have preferable matchups.

Perfect Game

How many innings do you see Ryu realistically throwing – even in absence of injury? He’s already passed last years’ total and hasn’t thrown more than 120 innings in years.

Mike

The format and frequency of these rankings might be the best I’ve seen on the internet. Love this.

Thinking of trading for Matt Boyd – does it bother anyone else that he’s essentially a two-pitch pitcher? I get that his slider is fantastic and the spin on his fastball makes it play faster than its sub-average velocity but until he develops a better change or trusts his curve more, I’m a little reticent to slap the ace tag on him. The SP landscape is littered with guys whose reliance on two pitches made them just a little too easy to figure out. What does everyone else think?

Derek

I think he could have the exact same season Patrick Corbin did last year. Their repertoires are exactly the same

Mike

That’s definitely a great comp, Derek. And thanks for the reply.

But Corbin threw curveball ~10% of the time last season. He’s since cut the use of it in half but nevertheless it’s there in the back of hitter’s minds. Plus, it was a slower version of his very excellent slider so it’s a good pitch that acts like a changeup but for his slider. Boyd doesn’t have that (not that he can’t develop a third pitch).

But let’s assume for a second that Corbin didn’t even have that curveball. If you play the numbers, I’m guessing you’ll find Corbin is the exception to the rule and that more often than not guys with 2 elite pitches and no 3rd are lucky to end up more like Chris Archer – and, at least in reality baseball, he’s a good pitcher.

Derek

Matt Boyd throws both a curveball and a change up more than 5% of the time. He throws pitches that aren’t his fastball or slider more than Corbin does. While it would be nice for him to expand on a tertiary pitch, and that might be keeping him out of the top 10 pitchers, I don’t see any reason why his formula can’t keep him around the top 25.

Nick Pollack

I mean, a 3.60 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 6 Ks ain’t bad for a kid that had 12 ER in his first 7 IP.

The upside is there, I think that’s worth chasing inside the Top 65 given the lack of options starting in the seventh tier.

Warren Shinnamon

I need to drop someone to make room for Zac Gallen. Who would you drop?

Jon Gray
Tyler Mahle
Matt Strahm
Joe Musgrove
Spencer Turnbull
Tyler Skaggs

Jack bob

I have Bieber and Morton. Would you trade them both for Bauer? My playoff chances are slim this year so keep in mind this will mainly be for 2020, with an outside chance of making it in this year.

Nick Pollack

Ha, obviously not Ryan,but his recent command certainly was.

I don’t believe that Heaney’s recent game is who he is the rest of the way, but that definitely stung. He’ll take a step back in the ranks a little on Monday, but don’t expect a massive fall.

Mike

That’s a great point. He’s also doubled the usage of his changeup over his last 4 starts which is something I’m keeping an eye on.

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