Welcome to this week’s edition of the 2023 two-start pitcher rankings!
My rankings have four tiers: Set and Forget, Probably Start, Questionable, and Avoid. Set and Forget starters are simply that; get them in your lineup and don’t think twice. The Most Likely Start tier includes players with the mix of skill and matchups that make them almost certainly two-start plays, but not without some elevated risk compared to the top tier. Questionable starters are those best suited for daily lineup leagues where you can bench them against the tougher of their two opponents. Finally, we have the Avoid tier, which includes two-start SPs who should remain on your bench or the wire.
Each week, I’ll be selecting my Two-Start Streamer of the Week. The criteria for a streamer will be roster-rate under 50% in Yahoo or ESPN leagues. The Streamer of the Week will be highlighted in the tables in green. Reach out to me in the PL Discord or on Twitter @AnthonyTucker81 and let me know if you’d grade the weekly streamer as a win or loss.
As a friendly reminder, the projected starters are just that, projections and subject to change.
Set and Forget
- Joe Ryan and Drew Rasmussen both broke out to a certain degree in 2022, but are making the case that they have another level in 2023. They’ve made the case you can start them with confidence regardless of opponent. We’re still too early for stabilization, but Rasmussen ranks third in the league with a 5.5 PLV.
- After rough starts to the year, we’ve started to see signs of optimism from both Chris Sale and Chris Bassitt. Neither has overwhelming matchups next week, giving them potential to build upon their most recent outings.
- Lucas Giolito has tallied a pair of 7 strikeouts and 6 IP performances to help rebuild some confidence after a disastrous 2022. Gio has cut down his walks in the early going, which will be important as he’ll face two AL East opponents that do damage offensively.
- Taj Bradley has turned heads in just two starts in his career and looks like he’s here to stay. The Astros will serve as Bradley’s first big test, but Houston has been merely league average offensively thus far. There are a couple of MVP-quality bats in the middle of the lineup, but Bradley has shown enough to lock him in for both matchups.
- For the first time this season, we have a collection of widely available two-start streamers with some upside. Among them, Kyle Bradish and Johan Oviedo are the likely targets if on your waiver wire. Bradish’s first full start of the year was heavily aided by facing the Nats. He’ll need to have a better fastball this upcoming week, but he’s this week’s Two-Start Streamer of the Week. The Orioles’ arm was showing improved velocity during the spring and, in his second start returning from injury, I expect it to return and pay dividends. If not for a start against the Dodgers, Oviedo would be a preferred option. His team context puts a damper on his outlook in roto leagues, but he’s worthy of your consideration.
- Edward Cabrera is an ideal one-start streamer, albeit with one of the more volatile profiles you’ll find. Erratic command and the resulting high WHIP are often a non-starter for those considering the 25-year-old. If he can limit the walks against Atlanta, consider him for a weekend start against the Cubs.
- While they don’t have the upside of Cabrera, the following names make for higher-floor streaming options: Brad Keller, Dean Kremer, and Josiah Gray
Isn’t Lynn a 2 start pitcher this week?
Hey David, you’re correct, the probable pitchers lined up initially with Giolito (who pitched instead today 4/23), so it’ll be Lynn. I’d rank him similar to Giolito in tier 2