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The List 7/11: Top 100 Starting Pitchers For 2022 – Week 14

Updated Top 100 Fantasy Baseball Starting Pitcher Rankings for 2022.

Welcome to The List, where I rank the Top 100 SP for Fantasy Baseball every single Monday of the year.

Want an earlier update to The List? Join me on Mondays at 1:00pm ET as I live-stream its creation each week!

Have questions? My “office hours” are on Twitch 9:00 am – 11:00 am ET Monday – Friday + the aforementioned stream of The List.

For each edition of The List, I have a set of rules to outline my thought process and how to best use these rankings. Please take note:

  1. This is 5×5, 12-teamer, H2H format focused. It generally is the same as roto as well, but make sure you adjust accordingly.
  2. We have two tables to review before the notes and rankings. First is an injury table that outlines where players would be relatively ranked if fully healthy. It’s the best way to tackle how to value players on the IL.
  3. If a player is on the IL or not confirmed inside the rotation, they aren’t on the List. That includes injuries and guys in the minors, but there are exceptions for players who are expected to be in the rotation but are being skipped this week.
  4. Second is a table of pitchers outside the Top 100 I considered. Please read this if you can’t find your guy.
  5. Since this is a 12-teamer, I heavily weigh upside in the back-half of the rankings. Tier 10 is likely going to underperform those in Tier 11 across a full season, but it’s in your best interest to chase Tier 10’s ceiling vs. settling for Tier 11’s floor.
  6. I’ve made a decision to remove all the labels that I struggle to maintain through the season to instead give each player just one label at a time. It streamlines the process much better and hopefully gives you a more targeted understanding of the player.
  7. The notes outline oh-so-much to help your team. Please read the notes if you can instead of just scrolling to the bottom.

 

Let’s get to the tables. First are all of our injured compatriots:

 

Injured Players Table

 

I made a decision this year: I’ve removed the “Preseason tiers” and changed “tiers” to “Relative Rank” as it’ll be more consistent week-to-week — Tiers change while their relative rank does not.

Please understand that “70-80” does not guarantee the player will be exactly in that range when they return. Rankings are 100% relative to the landscape and while this table reflects where they would sit in a vacuum, it’s a fluid creature. Sometimes there are oh-so-many options, sometimes I want to see them healthy and stretched out again, and others we’re starving for pitchers and they jump higher than “70-80”. It’s a loose reference point and why it’s called “relative ranking.” It’s difficult to update this week-to-week and I apologize if the ranking is different when the player actually returns from the IL. I hope it helps!

One last point about that – often times pitchers need an extra week or two to ramp up once they do return to the majors. It’s why Still ILL exists and the “relative rank” you see is when those guys have shaken off their rust. Will they be back to normal in their first start or will they need a few? I have no idea! Those ranks are to show what I’d expect once they are fully back to normal.

Now let’s take a look at the pitchers I considered for the Top 100 but didn’t quite make the cut:

 

Other Pitchers I Considered (Not Ranked In Order)

 

Lastly, I heavily recommend you follow my daily SP Roundup that outlines all pitcher performances through the season, or if you want a primer on most of these pitchers, you can check out my 40,000 words from the pre-season via my Top 224 Starting Pitchers for 2022 from February. Both will help you get a grasp of my general thoughts on most of these guys (especially the roundup!) as I simply can’t detail everything about 100 pitchers in these notes each week.

 

 

Ranking Notes

 

  • This is your reminder to please read these notes as they’ll tell you plenty about why “someone moved up” or “why is he at #X?!”
  • Seriously. Read the notes.

 

 

  • The top tier has some changes this week, starting with Shane McClanahan taking the #2 spot as I promised in the SP Roundup. He’s simply been that good and Gerrit Cole stumbled once again this past week. Nothing personal, Cole. I held back last week, but this was the final straw.
  • Max Scherzer also makes his return after an absolutely dominant return from the IL. No, I don’t think any less of Justin Verlander or Joe Musgroveso please ignore their “-1” ranks.

 

  • There’s a reason Shohei Ohtani is the featured pitcher this week – he’s risen into the Top 10 for the first time all year. His slider has completely changed him and only success has followed. Throw in his ability to regularly make starts every sixth day and it was time to give him the nod to the second tier.
  • So like Verlander and Musgrove above, please don’t look into the “drops” of Kevin Gausman and Alek Manoah.

 

  • The third tier has just a few changes at the end. I gave a hefty drop to Shane Bieber as he’s earned just 15 strikeouts across his last three outings, nearly matching his 11 ER in that time. I’m not that concerned, but I felt others were leap-frogging him in value at this point of the year.
  • Let’s also congratulate Robbie Ray, Dylan Ceaseand Tony Gonsolin as they earned their AGA badges this week. I rose Ray the highest of the lot as he’s been on an incredible stretch with his new sinker, though don’t overlook what it meant to give Cease and Gonsolin the label. I’m most skeptical of Gonsolin’s second half, but he’s done enough for me to throw my hands up and give him the dang thing.

 

  • Tier 4 is filled with the near AGA arms. We were getting close with Julio Urías and Shane Bazbut both took massive blows on Sunday, setting their dreams back a touch. Charlie Morton is the one most on the verge at the moment with his curveball performing as good as we’ve ever seen.
  • There are legit cases for Yu Darvish, Luis Castilloand Framber Valdez to earn their badges in the near future as well. Valdez has bumped up his strikeout rate lately, though the 13 strikeout game may be a heavy outlier as he should settle closer to a 20% clip than 25%.

 

  • The next tier is filled with guys we all want to lean on in the second half, but each have their concerns. Chris Sale is returning from the IL and could quickly climb to Tier 3, but he did just walk five batters and has to face the Rays + Yankees this week. It may be a Still ILL on Tuesday before that rough date with New York – be careful.
  • Lucas Giolito feels awfully close to putting it back together and had a Careful, Icarus ruin his weekend outing. I can feel many wanting to jump ship and I’d still be buying low here. I think Giolito is primed for a major second-half rebound.

 

  • It’s unclear what the status of Frankie Montas is at the moment – terrible news when he was just getting his AGA label before the shoulder problem. It’s hard to properly rank him now with his health up in the air.
  • I haven’t been thrilled at the Lance Lynn we’ve gotten this year as his velocity has hovered 92 mph instead of the near 94 mph clip from 2021. I’m still starting him frequently, but I’m not sold he’ll ascend at the moment.

 

  • Oh hey Spencer Strideryou’re pretty dang cool. It’s hard not to get absolutely seduced, but we have to temper our expectations a bit – we’ve seen starts where he’s unable to throw enough strikes, his success is across a small sample, and there is some question about his August/September usage (though, to that last point, I think we generally overestimate the value of September innings in the fantasy world). If Strider keeps performing at this level, he’ll rise up the ranks. Don’t worry.

 

  • WHOA WHOA WHOA STOP FOR A SECOND. I can’t thank you enough for taking the time to read the notes and support Pitcher List. Consider getting a premium subscription including Discord access, my exclusive morning podcast, and an ad-free version of the website at $31 off annually using promo code THENOTESCOUPON – Head here to sign up for PL+ Yearly for just $65 (I think this is the lowest it’s ever been…?). New Subscribers only. Thanks for being you.

 

  • I’m leading Tier 6 with Jon Gray this week as he’s been a stud over his last six starts, averaging over 96 mph on his heater with a near 40% CSW slider. He’s locked in after his early-season struggles + health and primed to soar in the second half.
  • I had to give falls the four under Gray – Logan Gilbert, Nestor Cortes, Luis Garciaand Cristian JavierThe re-introductions of Scherzer & Bassitt + the rise of Strider and Gray innately lowered these arms, but they also haven’t been pitching up to their potential recently. I have a little more faith in Garcia and Javier to rebound than Cortes at the moment, but all four could rebound soon.

 

  • After keeping Blake Snell raised through his troubles, I dropped him a few weeks ago…right before he finally began expressing his potential with back-to-back double-digit strikeout games. That’s just how it goes sometimes. He’s back inside the Top 50 now, but I couldn’t raise him further across such a small sample. In fact, I didn’t expect to raise him this much, but there are quite a number of pitchers underperforming at the moment – you may as well chase the hot hand with tantalizing upside.
  • I gave some drops to Mike Clevinger, Zac Gallen, and Joe Ryanwho each have the upside to be Top 30 arms, but haven’t quite clicked yet. We’re running out of time this year.

 

  • The first tier of “dependables” arrives a bit earlier this week as I split up the tier and gave this crew more love. Taijuan Walker has amazed me across the last month as he’s suddenly racked up the strikeouts, while the likes of Miles Mikolas, Tyler Anderson, Adam Wainwrightand Carlos Carrasco have steadily helped teams. Just avoid them against the toughest teams, okay?
  • Now that Marcus Stroman is back from the IL, he returns to this tier, albeit at the end. He’ll get the Mets this week likely on a limited pitch count, making his value come more from his post-ASB situation.

 

  • Tier 9 is a mix of disappointment and excitement. It kicks off with Sonny Gray, Sean Manaeaand Michael Kopech all taking hits as we don’t know when they’ll be at their peaks again. It’s possible all three are their best selves as soon as their next start, though Gray needs his breakers back, Manaea his secondaires, and Kopech his velocity.
  • There’s also MacKenzie Gorewho has had depressed velocity for about five starts now. I wouldn’t be shocked if the Padres gave him a bit of a rest with the All-Star break, but who knows. There’s a whole lot of talent here and I’m curious if it’ll spark again in the near future.

 

  • On the other side of the coin, you have exciting names like Aaron Ashby and Nick Lodolowho could be premier southpaws in the second half. Give them some time, both could develop in a major way through the end of the year.
  • What are we doing with the Alexes of San Francisco? Alex Wood carried an impressive 41% CSW with his slider over the weekend and may have his luck starting to go his way, while we’re still waiting for fortune to arrive for Alex CobbFeel free to get off this if you’d like, I figured #63/64 is a solid place for purgatory.

 

  • A little more on Alex Cobb, his rise is less to do with my feeling of the man, but more of the need to drop others (Taillon, Pivetta, Lauer, Syndergaard, and Pérez). Don’t take it as me saying “he’s getting better!”
  • Oh, right. There’s also Tarik SkubalHe rebounded last game (finally) but I wasn’t infatuated with his arsenal and I’m a little worried it was a DennisWe’re not out of the woods yet.

 

  • The tenth tier is a sub-set of the same upside tier, but carries a more apparent floor. Hunter Greene and Josiah Gray have each featured double-digit strikeout games, but can also destroy your week in a heartbeat. I hope these young arms stabilize with more time on the bump, but we may be dealing with their volatility for a long time.
  • Then there’s Eric Lauer and Nick PivettaLauer had 21 whiffs on his four-seamer before dropping to just five of them over the weekend, including poor command of all his stuff. It’s getting harder to trust his peaks. As for Pivetta, he’s struggled in his last two starts and has another difficult matchup against the Yankees ahead. It looks like the time to search for another waiver wire arm.

 

  • The eleventh tier is a chonkster as it contains all of the “sure, I guess I need someone” guys. I debated throwing José Urquidy further up the ranks, though I’m not totally sold that his four-seamer-heavy approach elevates him far above those also in Tier 11.
  • The aforementioned trio of Martín Pérez, Noah Syndergaardand Jameson Taillon fell a substantial amount this week. Pérez isn’t the blind Vargas Rule any longer, Syndergaard is volatile start-to-start, and Taillon hasn’t been a solid play for a few weeks now. They deserved the drop.

 

  • You’re going to see some large jumps here, but really, they’re not. We’re past the Top 70 now and the difference between the 70s and 90s really isn’t that big of a deal. Sorry Kyle Gibson, Ross Striplingand Aaron CivaleI like you more than I did last week, but I’m still not there, you know?
  • I won’t ignore Zach Plesac earning whiffs consistently with his slider as his changeup boasts high strike rates. It’s a solid combo that makes him viable against the right opponents.

 

  • There’s still some fun left on The List and it can be found in Tier 12. Matthew Liberatore has gotten another chance with the Cardinals and he showed up throwing multiple ticks harder with a new slider that could turn into a legit offering. I dig this a lot and I’d keep my eye on him post-All-Star Break.
  • In the same light, Reid Detmers returned for the Angels with a heavy reliance on a slider that gained 3 mph. It’s a new pitch and if that can develop into a proper whiff offering, we’re in business.

 

  • I’m monitoring Brayan Bello’s start for the Red Sox Monday evening as I’d imagine Boston could keep him around if he performs better than his MLB debut. I have a suspicion jitters got to him more than we know, and this could be something we’ll be chasing on the wire on Tuesday morning.
  • I won’t rule out Trevor Rogers becoming something in the second half (I know, I know) and with the SP Landscape as it is, he still needs to be on your radar.

 

  • The final tier is your last chance of finding streaming options throughout the week. Don’t overlook Jake Odorizzi getting the Athletics, Madison Bumgarner sitting 91/92 mph velocity, or Johnny Cueto squirming his way through 6+ frames once again.
  • Speaking of which, Michael Pineda keeps finding a way to survive five innings at 2 ER or fewer and it’s time we just shrug our shoulders and accept that.

 

  • There were some major drops here – Devin Smeltzer, Tyler Wells, Cal Quantrilland Chris Flexen – as I assessed them as not worth holding onto above the intrigue of Tier 12 options. I can still see their streams working out here and there.
  • Lastly, Dean Kremer and Keegan Thompson rejoin The List this week. Kremer has been a bit of a surprise and rebounded last time out, while Thompson may have a touch more strikeout upside than I originally anticipated. I’m not sold on either one, but they have my attention.

 

  • Finally, George Kirby was demoted to Triple-A as a way for the Mariners to limit his innings. I imagine he’ll be back before the end of July and it’s a tough call for your fantasy teams. I’d expect more of the same that he’s given us so far, and in most cases, I think I’d hold for the final two months.

 

 

 

YOU SHOULD READ THE NOTES

 

RankPitcherBadgesChange
1Corbin BurnesT1
Aces Gonna Ace
-
2Shane McClanahan
Aces Gonna Ace
+1
3Gerrit Cole
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
4Sandy Alcantara
Aces Gonna Ace
-
5Zack Wheeler
Aces Gonna Ace
-
6Max Scherzer
Aces Gonna Ace
+2
7Justin Verlander
T2
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
8Joe Musgrove
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
9Carlos Rodón
Aces Gonna Ace
-
10Shohei Ohtani
Aces Gonna Ace
+2
11Kevin Gausman
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
12Alek Manoah
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
13Luis Severino
T3
Aces Gonna Ace
-
14Aaron Nola
Aces Gonna Ace
-
15Brandon Woodruff
Aces Gonna Ace
+1
16Max Fried
Aces Gonna Ace
+1
17Clayton Kershaw
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
+1
18Logan Webb
Aces Gonna Ace
+1
19Robbie Ray
Aces Gonna Ace
+4
20Dylan Cease
Aces Gonna Ace
+1
21Shane Bieber
Aces Gonna Ace
-6
22Pablo López
Aces Gonna Ace
-
23Tony Gonsolin
Aces Gonna Ace
+2
24Charlie Morton
T4
Ace Potential
+2
25Julio Urías
Ace Potential
-5
26Shane Baz
Ace Potential
-2
27Chris Bassitt
Ace Potential
+UR
28Yu Darvish
Ace Potential
+1
29Luis Castillo
Ace Potential
+1
30Framber Valdez
Ace Potential
+4
31Chris Sale
T5
Ace Potential
+UR
32Kyle Wright
Ace Potential
+1
33Lucas Giolito
Ace Potential
-6
34Frankie Montas
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
-6
35Spencer Strider
Ace Potential
+2
36Lance Lynn
Ace Potential
-5
37Jon Gray
T6
Ace Potential
+2
38Logan Gilbert
Ace Potential
-3
39Luis Garcia
Strikeout Upside
-3
40Cristian Javier
Ace Potential
-2
41Nestor Cortes
Ace Potential
-9
42Triston McKenzie
Strikeout Upside
-
43Patrick Sandoval
Ace Potential
+1
44Blake Snell
T7
Ace Potential
+22
45Jordan Montgomery
Ratio Focused
-
46Mike Clevinger
Ace Potential
-5
47Joe Ryan
Ace Potential
-7
48José Berríos
Cherry Bomb
-
49Zac Gallen
Ace Potential
-3
50Taijuan Walker
T8
Quality Starts
+4
51Miles Mikolas
Quality Starts
+4
52Adam Wainwright
Quality Starts
+4
53Tyler Anderson
Quality Starts
+4
54Carlos Carrasco
Quality Starts
+4
55Marcus Stroman
Quality Starts
+UR
56Sonny Gray
T9
Strikeout Upside
-5
57Sean Manaea
Ace Potential
-7
58Michael Kopech
Ace Potential
-5
59Aaron Ashby
Ace Potential
+3
60Nick Lodolo
Strikeout Upside
+7
61Tarik Skubal
Ace Potential
+3
62MacKenzie Gore
Ace Potential
-10
63Alex Wood
Cherry Bomb
+8
64Alex Cobb
Cherry Bomb
+6
65Hunter Greene
T10
Cherry Bomb
+7
66Josiah Gray
Cherry Bomb
+17
67Eric Lauer
Strikeout Upside
-4
68Nick Pivetta
Strikeout Upside
-25
69José Urquidy
T11
Toby
-
70Martín Pérez
Quality Starts
-9
71Noah Syndergaard
Toby
-12
72Jameson Taillon
Toby
-12
73Paul Blackburn
Toby
-
74Corey Kluber
Quality Starts
-
75Merrill Kelly
Quality Starts
+3
76Kyle Gibson
Toby
+16
77Marco Gonzales
Quality Starts
-2
78Ross Stripling
Streaming Option
+18
79Drew Rasmussen
Toby
-3
80Aaron Civale
Toby
+10
81Zach Plesac
Toby
+8
82Matthew Liberatore
T12
Stash Option
+UR
83Brayan Bello
Stash Option
-15
84David Peterson
Streaming Option
-7
85Ian Anderson
Cherry Bomb
+6
86Trevor Rogers
Stash Option
-2
87Reid Detmers
Stash Option
+UR
88Johnny Cueto
T13
Toby
+UR
89Madison Bumgarner
Streaming Option
+UR
90Chris Flexen
Toby
-10
91Cal Quantrill
Toby
-12
92Tyler Wells
Toby
-10
93Devin Smeltzer
Toby
-12
94Jake Odorizzi
Streaming Option
+UR
95Graham Ashcraft
Stash Option
-7
96Patrick Corbin
Cherry Bomb
-3
97Keegan Thompson
Streaming Option
+UR
98Zack Greinke
Toby
-3
99Dean Kremer
Streaming Option
+UR
100Michael Pineda
Streaming Option
+UR

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

 

Photo by Brandon Sloter/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

6 responses to “The List 7/11: Top 100 Starting Pitchers For 2022 – Week 14”

  1. Analyst says:

    Okay I’m going to comment on a SP that I think has been quite a bit underrated and we are in mid-July. Dylan Cease. He is Top 8 in ERA/xERA/FIP/xFIP (only other 2 SPs that qualify for this are Mclanahan and Burnes), and #2 in K% (behind Mclanahan) and #3 in swgStr% (behind Burnes/Mclanahan). We’re talking about a Ratio and Strikeout god that only your #1 and #2 SPs overall have performed higher. His track record is also as long or longer than many above him and this year he actually has been fairly consistent (again as consistent or more than many above him). He has a strong case to be #3 based on all the numbers but he is all the way at 20???? WHY. IMO easily deserves to be in Top 10.

    • Kyle Bland says:

      The easiest answer is probably the 11.1% BB rate. That’s a pretty scary BB% for a frontline starter. Ray’s 2nd worst of anyone ranked above him, and he’s only at 8.5%. Cease has done a great job of stranding those free baserunners, because he’s awesome and strikes out everyone else, but that still adds a bit of risk to his otherwise sterling profile.

      • Analyst says:

        While thats true, BB isn’t actually a category and his WHIP is still lower than guys like Guasman. End of the day, he is arguably a Top 3 ERA guy and Top 3 Ks guy, plays on a decent batting team, is his WHIP really that bad that despite being Top 3 caliber in Ks/ERA should move him all the way down to Top 20?

        • Jayson says:

          Cease’s WHIP: 1.23. He nowhere deserves to be in the Top 10. The only reason why Gausman ranks higher than him while having been kicked of the Top 10 (if you noticed) is because he’s a more proven pitcher and we are more likely to see his 1.27 WHIP to reduce than Cease with his 1.23 WHIP.

          Finally, it’s either an anomaly to carry such a low ERA and inflated WHIP, or it means the ERA will inflate at some point.

  2. JR says:

    Drop the one you think has less chance of turning it around before September? Kopech, Ryan, Lynn.

  3. DJ says:

    Wondering where you’d rank Andrew Heaney among the SP’s on the IL… Trying to decide between picking up Heaney or Dustin May for additional SP depth for our playoffs in early-Sept.

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