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Now that I’m done recapping 2008 fantasy baseball rankings. Straight done recapping! It’s time to look at the 2008 top 20 rookie pitchers. Unlike with the top 20 rookie hitters of 2008, where I expressed a case of rookie nookie, the pitchers bring a lot more risk and I’m more hesitant to go near these guys. A rookie hitter goes 0-for-30 — oh well, drop him. A rookie pitcher goes 2 innings, giving up seven runs, and he can kill your ERA and WHIP for a week. That’s not to say I didn’t own any of these guys; I did. I’m just much more careful about them. If they’re not supplying Ks, I rarely touch them. Anyway, here’s the top 20 rookie pitchers of 2008:

20.  Nick Blackburn –  Honestly, I could’ve made this the top 14 pitchers of 2008 and you wouldn’t have lost much.  Final Numbers: 11-11/4.05/1.36/96 in 193.1 IP

19.  Scott Lewis – Only pitched 24 IP so he could make the list again in 2009. Those twenty-four innings came in 4 starts where he went… Final Numbers:  4-0/2.63/1.08/15 in 24 IP

18.  Masahide Kobayashi – I almost placed Aaron Laffey in this spot, but he was demoted after a solid April. If he had an awful April and a solid September, he might’ve made this list. Things that make you go hmm… Final Numbers:  4-5/4.53/1.42/35 in 55.2 IP

17.  Greg Smith – Out of 89 pitchers who pitched 160 innings, Greg Smith had the 89th worst run support at 2.88 runs per start.  On a contender, he could’ve been a contenda. Final Numbers:  7-16/4.16/1.35/111 in 190.1 IP

15.  Glen Perkins – 74 Ks in 151 innings? That’s a bad case of the blahs. Final Numbers:  12-4/4.41/1.47/74 in 151 IP

16.  Justin Masterson – Has the stuff/delivery for a middle man. Had the numbers of a successful middle man who had a few starts.  Final Numbers:  6-5/3.16/1.22/68 in 88.1 IP

14.  Johnny Cueto - Ah… The promise of rookie nookie and the unreliability of a roofie.  2008 might make Cueto one of the biggest fantasy bargains in 2009, but there will be plenty of time to talk about 2009.  Final Numbers:  9-14/4.81/1.41/158 in 174 IP

13.  Max Scherzer – Jobacum snowballed from a hot pickup to a minor leaguer to hot pickup.  BTW, I’m so spent on Jobacum puns I’m using snowballed.  We’ll need to have a “Please post your own Jobacum pun in the comments” post one of these days. Final Numbers:  0-4/3.05/1.23/66 in 56 IP

12.  Chris Volstad – His name sounds like he should be in a Bret Easton Ellis novel, his groundball rate was muy picante, but his K rate was muy mal. Final Numbers:  6-4/2.88/1.33/52 in 84.1 IP

11.  Clayton Kershaw – Kershaw reinforces the myth that someone with a K last name is more likely to strikeout hitters. This shizz is scientific. Final Numbers:  5-5/4.26/1.50/100 in 107.2 IP

10.  Joba Chamberlain – Somebody celebrated their top ten finish in Razzball’s top 20 rookie pitchers and went and got themselves locked up. Final Numbers:  4-3/2.60/1.26/118 in 100.1 IP

9. Jorge Campillo – For a time, Campillo filled in for Rich Hill on a bunch of my teams in 2008. But enough about me! Wait, it’s all about me, isn’t it? Final Numbers:  8-7/3.91/1.24/107 in 158.2 IP

8.  John Lannan – Not a great K rate and he’s on the Nats. What is the reason you didn’t have him on your fantasy team? Final Numbers: 9-15/3.91/1.34/117 in 182 IP

7.  Chris Perez – Save vulture says, Chris Perez is the closer. Swoop! Save vulture says, Izzy got the closing job back. Reverse swoop! Motte is the closer! I didn’t say, “Save vulture says.” Final Numbers:  3-3/3.46/1.34/42, 7 saves in 41.2 IP

6.  Joey Devine – If he gets the opportunity to be the A’s closer in 2009, I’ll be all over “Waking” Joey Devine like white on something very white, but not rice, cause that’s cliché. Final Numbers:  6-1/.59/.83/49, 1 save in 45.2 IP

5.  Hiroki Kuroda – I actually drafted this schmohawk in a ten team mixed league. Then I dropped him before the season started. Sometimes you’re the teacher, sometimes you’re the student and sometimes you’re the schmohawk. Final Numbers:  9-10/3.73/1.22/116 in 183.1 IP

4.  Jose Arrendondo – If dooode would’ve had ten more vulture wins, he would’ve had one of the best seasons ever, according to Elias Sports Bureau. Final Numbers:  10-2/1.62/1.05/55 in 61 IP

3.  Jair Jurrjens – Somehow I ended up with JJj on just about every team. Guess that’s what happens when you drafted Rich Hill and Harang in 2008. Yes, it still stings. Final Numbers:  13-10/3.68/1.37/139 in 188.1 IP

2.  Armando Galarraga –  Here’s a pitcher that I refused to believe in the entire season. His rates just were all a bit cock-eyed. So maybe I was wrong about not picking him up in 2008, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to be excited about him in 2009. Final Numbers:  13-7/3.73/1.19/126 in 178.2 IP

1.  Brad Ziegler – That he’s number one is more of an indictment on the rookie pitchers for 2008. (Edinson Volquez was not a rookie.) This is not to say Ziegler wasn’t flat-out bombilcious. Oh, he was. Whatever bombilious means. Final Numbers:  3-0/1.06/1.16/30, 11 saves in 59.2 IP