I’ll be honest: a lot of the job of a fantasy sports writer is constrained by search engine optimization and giving audiences what they expect. This article, for example, is ostensibly about starting pitchers. But what *is* a starter, anyway? So many teams are using openers now. So many teams are letting pitchers go 4.2 IP, or piggybacking, or bullpen games, or long reliever, or, or, or. And tee-bee-ache (pronounce that last word softly, like you’re staring longingly into its eyes waiting for the next clause), starters don’t require a mass of innings pitched to be effective for fantasy baseball. In 2021, Corbin Burnes finished SP5 with 167IP, Carlos Rodon SP10 with 132IP, Jacob deGrom SP13 with 92IP (!), Freddy Peralta SP14 with 144IP, and so on. Unless you’re in one of those quality starts leagues — which I established in the pre-season were just different ways of slandering a Win — you could really roll with any number of “pitchers,” broadly speaking, and do fine.

Let’s re-think what “starters” are. Basically, starters are the IP ballast that gets you that elusive “Win” category, right? The yin to the yang of the efficient, save-craving closer. Last year, Chad Green, Paul Sewald, Ranger Suarez, Andrew Kittredge, Jonathan Loaisiga, Tyler Rogers, Blake Treinen, Drew Steckenrider, Garrett Whitlock, Kendall Graveman, Colin McHugh, and Devin Williams were all Top 100 pitchers despite spending the year neither as a primary closer or primary starter. In other words, 1/9th of the Top 100 pitchers didn’t have an established role on their team. Paul Sewald and Chad Green had more wins than Brandon Woodruff, Sandy Alcantara, Shohei Ohtani, Trevor Rogers, Alek Manoah, and Yu Darvish. You get the idea.

I mean, you probably wouldn’t have won your league with the “roleless” rotation [points above], but Ranger Suarez finished as P33, Paul Sewald as P47, and Chad Green as P49. They all finished ahead of Yu Darvish, Trevor Rogers, Shane McClanahan, John Means, Shane Bieber, Jack Flaherty, and German Marquez. Y’all know how many touts ran through the streets celebrating their drafts with Bieber/Flaherty/Darvish/Means and then danced on the edge of a volcano when they picked up Rogers and McClanahan? When it was all said and done, they coulda just picked up Chad Green off the waivers and had a better outcome than any of those guys. [teeth sucking noise]

The above observation got me thinking (or, for those using screen readers, the hypothetical rotation I mentioned an eon ago while dinosaurs still trotted the globe): while we’re setting up the confidence ranking for 2022, let’s expand our horizons. I’ve never given you just 100 starting pitchers; usually, I post like 150. And honestly, I’ve never given you just starters — that’s how a bunch of you ended up with Freddy Peralta on your teams last year (and that former no-role guy finished as SP14!).

For 2022, I’m expanding the horizons a bit: you’re getting my confidence ranking on the top pitchers for your fantasy team. So: starters, openers, and those nebulous middle relief semi-bullpen guys like Chad Green, Michael King, Josh Fleming, Taylor Hearn, etc. Truth is, sometimes a fantasy pitcher gets injured, and the best solution is to replace the player with a non-starter. No, not that kind of non-starter. A Roleless Rob, so to speak.

Let’s break down some performances from the past week, and get on to the rankings!

Kyle WrightWell, my system seems to love him, and don’t we all? Wright dominates batters, like Voldemort except with baseballs. He’s striking out 3 batters for every 2 innings, which means he’s leaving only 3 outs for his fielders to manage. Come on, Kyle, share the love! He’s rostered just about everywhere now, so…let’s move on!

Michael KingHere’s a weird one. King has been an occasional spot-starter slash non-important game closer for the Yankees for a few years. That’s the kind of position that Freddy Peralta was in for the Brewers! This year, King has already racked up 10 IP — more than a number of full time starters — and he has an unreasonable 15 K/9 streak going. I almost wrote “steak” because my mouth started watering. He’s picked up a Save and a Win already, and he’s pitched in nearly 40% of the Yankees’ games so far. Could that lead to tiredness? Sure, whatever. What am I? Armstradamus? At this point, King is pitching like an elite starter and making a case for a more important role on the team…or possibly another team at the deadline. Put in perspective, King has enough IP to be SP2 on the Tigers this year. On the OVERALL Player Rater, King’s in the Top 100. I’m not saying to over-react, but…15 K/9 with starting experience in the Bronx will play.

Paul BlackburnThe Athletics are a mess and a major metropolis have abandoned their team. OK, that’s awful for real baseball, but for us fantasy mavens, we’re wondering if we can sign up some heroes to our squad. Blackburn is a journeyman without a great pedigree, but he’s crossing the threshold where his K/9 is acceptable and his ability to limit damage tolerable. How’s about that for a tout! But those kinds of arms can be the quiet league winners — Blackburn will be asked to eat some innings and that could lead to a slight Win advantage, and his ability to limit walks will play. I hesitantly recommend Blackburn in many formats, with the knowledge that he could transform into a turnip at any moment.

Jose BerriosIn my internal Google Sheet, I created an automatic “This Guy is Crappy” tab. It spit out Jose Berrios. I thought, “Maybe my filters are too restrictive and I need more coffee.” So I adjusted, like all good engineers do. Still, the automatic crap-o-nator spit out Jose Berrios. This isn’t an arms race, but there’s some worry about Berrios. K/9 at a career low, with a BB/9 above 4. Did the spirit of 2020 Robbie Ray stay in Toronto? And at the time of writing, his FIP is…6.66. Spooky! Berrios is only 28 and has been a stalwart for fantasy managers for years, so fingers crossed he figures out his problem. For now, bench Berrios until warmer weather or the Pirates roll into town.

Andrew HeaneyTried telling you he wasn’t all bad. There’s a reason the Dodgers targeted him as one of their top off-season acquisitions (take that Freddie Freeman!) and gave him a prove-it contract after the Angels and Yankees ruined his confidence last year. Heaney just hit the IL with shoulder discomfort due to the shortened spring training and news reports indicate nobody in the organization is worried about significant time missed. Heaney is still available in like 10% of leagues and most people consider him a “sell-high!” candidate. Lucky for you, 420 Day is gone and you don’t need to be high to justify buying Heaney! Don’t sell the farm to get AH, but, consider trading one of those Owen Miller-types that is playing out of their mind this spring (don’t you dare trade Seiya though!).

Keegan ThompsonHe’s got more IP than Freddy Peralta, Andrew Heney, and Clayton Kershaw. He’s snared two wins out of four games, which is why he’s a bit over-valued right now. That said, this is how Freddy Peralta got started in 2020 and 2021, and Thompson is available everywhere in all formats and is worth a speculative add in best ball at 16+ team leagues.

Garrett WhitlockA win, a save, and 5 appearances. Old-school Razzball hates that kind of pitcher. But new-school Razzball loves that 11+ K/9. As we’ve learned, you want to chase K/9 because that will play. Whitlock appeared in Tier 1 after I refreshed the data on Sunday morning, which is great news for everybody who speculatively added him. If he’s still out there in any of your leagues, snag him ASAP.

Gerrit ColeWow, he’s way down there on the list, ain’t he? He’s currently SP152 on the Razzball Player rater, which definitely is not the return on investment anybody was expecting. Well, maybe just people who don’t read my columns because I’ve always asked y’all to fade Cole. He’ll redeem himself soon enough but in the meantime, every Cole blown start gives a guy like Michael King a chance to make a case for solid role in the rotation.

Josh FlemingTold y’all it’s early in the season. Fleming racked up 100+ IP last year, and already has 2 wins on 10IP this year. Big difference? He’s K-ing 11+ per 9 this year, which is over twice as many punchouts as last year. So, you want big and bold statements? How about my system outputting Josh Fleming in the top 20 pitchers? His ERA is over 4.00 but his FIP is 3 points less and his BABIP is nearing .500. That means: regression incoming!

The Confidence Men

Awright, here’s the list. It’s a new list. Never seen a better list. Truth. I re-invented my listicle style this year to take advantage of the fluid P/SP roles that so many teams utilize. I rank according to Confidence, which means: On a per inning basis, how confident am I that I should play this pitcher? An ideal confidence score is something like 4.2. What am I, a math major? You’ll notice that even the top tier of players max out in the high 3-point range (wish pitchers could shoot the three).

K/9 gets the highest weight in my system, followed by a number of other important factors, like how the pitcher looks in tight pants. This year, I’ve managed to correct last year’s biggest weakness: injuries. I’ve tied my ranks into Rudy’s Rest of Season projections that automatically calculate remaining games. Now, you’ll still need to use your human brain a bit because sometimes MLB teams don’t update their injury lists immediately (remember the pre-season when we’re all waiting for injured players to be officially listed?). Players like John Means are controlled by Rudy’s algorithm, which still has him down for 25 games remaining because his data source has Means on the 10-day IL. Also, Means is visiting Dr. Freeze if you didn’t hear, so we won’t see him until late 2023. Definitely not making that 25-game projection for 2022.

So, always do a sanity check. I’m providing free data that quite literally has a better or higher correlation to fantasy efficacy than many sites that charge an arm and a leg and don’t answer your questions. The source of this data is none other than Razzball itself. So, if you are winning money or having a great time reading the articles, please consider a subscription to the site or drop me a line in the comments and let me know I’m not wasting my life away for naught.

Here’s how to use the list:

  • Tier: 1=best, 2=everybody else for 12 team consideration, 3=deep league/dynasty/best ball/tournaments/DFS, 4= you do you.
  • Name: Player name
  • Confidence: The overall score my system outputs. The higher the score, the more confident I am in using the player. As always, we’re in small sample size territory, so this ranking will get better as the season goes on.
  • Own%: This is the rostership % of the player in Razzball Commenter Leagues, run on Fantrax. This may vary depending on site and format for readers.
  • L30$/G: This is how valuable the player has been over the past month. Players with high confidence who have low or negative $/G are “buy low” candidates. Shohei Ohtani has been blistering with his true skill stats, but his roto stats (like a 4.40 ERA) aren’t valuable. This indicates we should expect Ohtani to be much more valuable soon. Spot starters/Roleless Robs will have a lower $/G because they play in more games. Michael King, for example, has pitched in twice as many games as the other top P.
Tier Name Confidence Own% L30$/G
1 Kyle Wright 3.649 100 48.4
1 Carlos Rodon 3.642 100 49.2
1 Nestor Cortes 3.612 100 28
1 Clayton Kershaw 3.541 100 59.5
1 Shohei Ohtani 3.367 100 -2.5
1 Andrew Heaney 3.356 91 49.3
1 Garrett Whitlock 3.277 100 15.5
1 Michael King 3.211 6.9
1 Shane McClanahan 3.099 100 1.5
1 Kevin Gausman 2.887 100 1.4
2 Josh Fleming 2.722 5 -19
2 Max Fried 2.678 100 -4.8
2 Tarik Skubal 2.663 100 3.1
2 Shane Bieber 2.636 100 13.6
2 Paul Blackburn 2.613 55 26.5
2 Max Scherzer 2.600 100 39.2
2 Joe Musgrove 2.589 100 38
2 Frankie Montas 2.562 100 14.1
2 Kyle Gibson 2.552 68 -2.6
2 Pablo Lopez 2.536 100 43.2
2 Freddy Peralta 2.513 100 -54.9
2 Tyler Mahle 2.459 100 -41.3
2 Carlos Carrasco 2.457 100 20.9
2 Wil Crowe 2.455 39 10.5
2 Merrill Kelly 2.452 86 13.2
2 Steven Matz 2.447 75 -23.3
2 Dylan Cease 2.407 100 1.3
2 Chris Bassitt 2.403 100 17.2
2 Tylor Megill 2.394 100 18.8
2 Sean Manaea 2.391 100 37.9
2 Keegan Thompson 2.376 2 19.9
2 Dylan Bundy 2.373 75 48
2 Victor Arano 2.350 2 -4
2 Michael Kopech 2.344 100 12.6
2 Ryan Helsley 2.322 9 1.7
2 Rafael Montero 2.310 3.1
2 Corbin Burnes 2.299 100 20.4
2 Steven Wilson 2.299 3.8
2 Zach Eflin 2.290 9 -47.1
2 Miles Mikolas 2.287 61 3.4
2 Brandon Woodruff 2.276 100 -3.5
2 Jesus Luzardo 2.248 100 -30.3
2 Alex Cobb 2.244 100 -14.2
2 Logan Gilbert 2.244 100 38.5
2 Adam Wainwright 2.233 100 0.9
2 Nathan Eovaldi 2.202 100 -11.8
2 Logan Webb 2.195 100 -4.7
2 Taylor Hearn 2.192 -73.5
2 Justin Wilson 2.182 -4.4
2 Kyle Hendricks 2.176 91 -28.5
2 Jalen Beeks 2.172 18 8.8
2 Chasen Shreve 2.171 -0.7
2 Scott Effross 2.171 -6
2 A.J. Minter 2.171 -3.3
2 Brad Keller 2.165 32 -5.9
2 Bruce Zimmermann 2.162 8.8
2 Kenley Jansen 2.160 100 -1.5
2 J.P. Feyereisen 2.158 2 0.8
2 Sam Hentges 2.156 -3.9
2 Taijuan Walker 2.152 7 15.9
2 Justin Verlander 2.143 100 25.1
2 Martin Perez 2.129 -35
2 Brooks Raley 2.128 9 -4.1
2 Jordan Montgomery 2.118 100 -16.3
2 Austin Gomber 2.098 5 -29.5
2 Seranthony Dominguez 2.091 2 -3.1
2 Daniel Hudson 2.086 16 3.4
2 Josh Hader 2.082 100 6.5
2 Cristian Javier 2.072 86 6.3
2 Collin McHugh 2.067 14 -11.9
2 Corbin Martin 2.055 -3.7
2 Michael Fulmer 2.051 52 3.9
2 Keegan Akin 2.049 -2.2
2 Mitch Keller 2.039 5 -58.1
2 Alek Manoah 2.033 100 33.4
2 Alex Wood 2.023 100 7.5
2 Enyel De Los Santos 2.020 0
2 Luis Severino 2.018 100 -8.1
2 Triston McKenzie 2.016 100 -14.9
2 Trevor Gott 2.014 -2
2 Josiah Gray 2.005 98 -0.2
2 Bailey Ober 2.003 86 -2.3
3 Tyler Anderson 1.995 30 3.3
3 Chad Kuhl 1.992 9 23.3
3 Erick Fedde 1.992 -52.2
3 JT Chargois 1.990 0.4
3 Andrew Kittredge 1.988 100 4.7
3 Trevor Rogers 1.986 100 -65.3
3 Jorge Lopez 1.982 98 1.2
3 Sergio Romo 1.979 -0.9
3 Phillips Valdez 1.977 1.4
3 Tanner Houck 1.976 100 -17
3 Bryan Baker 1.975 2 -4.8
3 Adrian Houser 1.974 2 -24.1
3 Tim Mayza 1.971 -1.6
3 Andres Munoz 1.971 45 -0.9
3 Joe Ryan 1.967 100 27.1
3 Sandy Alcantara 1.959 100 2.7
3 Reid Detmers 1.956 48 -49.9
3 Pierce Johnson 1.955 16 -9.5
3 David Bednar 1.949 100 -0.1
3 Anthony DeSclafani 1.944 86 -65.5
3 Sean Doolittle 1.944 -1.4
3 Patrick Corbin 1.943 18 -103.5
3 Sam Selman 1.937 10.9
3 Andrew Bellatti 1.922 -2.9
3 Diego Castillo 1.916 80 -5.5
3 Jake Cousins 1.914 -3.4
3 Tanner Scott 1.912 2 -2
3 Dillon Tate 1.908 -6
3 Yu Darvish 1.908 100 -19.7
3 Zack Wheeler 1.905 100 -74.3
3 Zac Gallen 1.902 100 12
3 David Peterson 1.902 5 -0.6
3 Dylan Coleman 1.900 -3
3 Scott Barlow 1.898 100 0.6
3 Dinelson Lamet 1.897 9 -4.9
3 Jhoulys Chacin 1.894 -4.9
3 Felix Bautista 1.894 -5.5
3 Jose Alvarado 1.893 -7.8
3 Josh Staumont 1.892 95 -4.8
3 Framber Valdez 1.891 100 -35.8
3 Jordan Romano 1.890 100 3
3 Dany Jimenez 1.889 3.6
3 Brock Burke 1.887 2 4.4
3 Hunter Greene 1.887 93 -28.5
3 Erik Swanson 1.882 1
3 Kendall Graveman 1.882 5 -7.5
3 Gabe Speier 1.880 0.7
3 Trevor Stephan 1.872 2 0.7
3 Lucas Luetge 1.866 -3.2
3 Luis Garcia 1.864 100 7.6
3 Luis Garcia 1.864 100 7.6
3 Marcus Stroman 1.861 84 -78.5
3 Evan Phillips 1.860 3.3
3 Chris Flexen 1.856 27 -20
3 Noah Syndergaard 1.855 100 20.5
3 Ross Stripling 1.854 -32.3
3 Tyler Kinley 1.853 -4.4
3 Jeffrey Springs 1.853 0.6
3 Duane Underwood Jr. 1.850 -20.8
3 Jameson Taillon 1.848 82 -17.7
3 Aaron Nola 1.848 100 -24
3 MacKenzie Gore 1.845 100 10.2
3 Craig Kimbrel 1.841 100 2.5
3 Clay Holmes 1.841 9 -1
3 Aaron Bummer 1.821 2 -10.3
3 Tyler Rogers 1.820 -6
3 JT Brubaker 1.813 2 -64.3
3 Eduardo Rodriguez 1.811 100 -44.6
3 Glenn Otto 1.799 47
3 Steven Okert 1.791 2.8
3 Jhoan Duran 1.788 66 -7.6
3 Jimmy Herget 1.787 -12
3 Chris Paddack 1.785 2 -39.4
3 Dane Dunning 1.782 -59.6
3 Matt Strahm 1.775 -1.3
3 Eric Lauer 1.771 39 -3.8
3 Chris Stratton 1.768 52 -5.5
3 Justin Grimm 1.767 -11.6
3 Justin Steele 1.766 7 -30.9
3 Joe Jimenez 1.762 -3.8
3 Cody Stashak 1.761 -7.5
3 Kyle Freeland 1.759 -81.2
3 Jordan Lyles 1.758 -32.1
3 Julian Merryweather 1.757 -8.7
3 Kyle Finnegan 1.752 7 -3.7
3 Charlie Morton 1.749 100 -49.1
3 Roansy Contreras 1.745 7 -2.3
3 Hector Neris 1.742 86 -2.1
3 Julio Urias 1.734 100 -12.2
3 Lucas Giolito 1.732 100 19
3 Eli Morgan 1.728 -13.3
3 Alex Lange 1.727 -7.6
3 Jose Ruiz 1.725 -4.8
3 Tyler Danish 1.722 1.8
3 Reiver Sanmartin 1.721 -65.3
3 Anderson Severino 1.718 -15.5
3 John Means 1.716 52 -26.9
3 Zack Greinke 1.714 43 -28.9
3 Kyle Nelson 1.709 -2
3 Spencer Strider 1.708 -10.5
3 Daulton Jefferies 1.708 7 6.4
3 Aroldis Chapman 1.707 100 -0.4
3 Tyler Alexander 1.704 -32.6
3 Zach Plesac 1.704 59 3.3
3 Drew Smyly 1.696 2 -3
3 Corey Kluber 1.691 48 -41.4
3 Drew Rasmussen 1.687 61 -40.7
3 Garrett Cleavinger 1.683 -20.9
3 German Marquez 1.683 86 -43.5
3 Aaron Ashby 1.681 57 -35.6
3 Cionel Perez 1.680 -4.3
3 Andres Machado 1.678 -7.8
3 Drew Smith 1.674 -3.7
3 Walker Buehler 1.673 100 -31.3
3 Joely Rodriguez 1.670 -10.1
3 Jhon Romero 1.666 -9
3 David Phelps 1.665 -3.9
3 Michael Wacha 1.660 7 6.5
3 Jordan Hicks 1.659 25 5.5
3 Justin Bruihl 1.654 -2.7
3 Antonio Senzatela 1.652 2 -60.6
3 Vince Velasquez 1.652 -64.7
3 Daniel Bard 1.650 100 2.5
3 Tyler Matzek 1.646 -3.9
3 Taylor Rogers 1.645 100 5.3
3 Alexander Wells 1.642 -2.8
3 Liam Hendriks 1.641 100 -6
3 Colin Poche 1.636 0.4
3 Cal Quantrill 1.630 59 -26.7
3 Austin Davis 1.625 -8.5
3 Gerrit Cole 1.620 100 -49.3
3 Mitch White 1.617 -9.3
3 Robert Suarez 1.616 7 -4.1
3 Konnor Pilkington 1.613 1.2
3 Joey Krehbiel 1.612 -0.3
3 Jackson Kowar 1.595 -179.1
3 Kutter Crawford 1.593 -16.9
3 Mike Baumann 1.592 -6.4
3 Daniel Norris 1.592 -8.7
3 Tony Gonsolin 1.590 100 0.3
3 A.J. Puk 1.588 -6.8
3 Joan Adon 1.586 -52.3
3 Corey Knebel 1.582 100 1.3
3 Aaron Loup 1.581 2 -0.4
3 Zach Davies 1.579 -33.9
3 Seth Lugo 1.578 -9.9
3 Tanner Banks 1.576 1.5
3 Devin Williams 1.572 45 -13.9
3 Jose Urquidy 1.569 -37.9
3 Dusten Knight 1.569 -14.8
3 Casey Mize 1.568 55 -60.6
3 Ranger Suarez 1.563 100 -42.6
3 Jason Adam 1.562 -3.2
3 Parker Mushinski 1.554 -12.8
3 Robbie Ray 1.549 100 -17.3
3 Patrick Sandoval 1.548 100 -6.4
3 Austin Voth 1.543 -14.9
3 Jakob Junis 1.541 57.8
3 Rowan Wick 1.540 11 -3.9
3 Blake Treinen 1.539 30 4.2
3 Paul Sewald 1.536 68 -0.1
3 Chris Martin 1.533 -8.1
3 Jeff Hoffman 1.531 -8.2
3 Matt Foster 1.530 -4.4
3 Will Vest 1.526 -4.8
3 Hansel Robles 1.525 36 3.7
3 Dakota Hudson 1.520 -17.7
3 Jeurys Familia 1.519 -11.2
3 Zach Thompson 1.518 -106.8
3 Paolo Espino 1.514 -28.9
3 Michael Lorenzen 1.511 18 -6.8
3 Jake Brentz 1.511 -15.5
3 Nick Pivetta 1.511 9 -95.4
3 Mychal Givens 1.509 57 -4.2
3 Anthony Gose 1.504 0.4
3 Matt Brash 1.501 93 -4.2
4 Jose Quintana 1.499 -44.6
4 Justin Lawrence 1.493 -1.4
4 David Robertson 1.491 100 2.6
4 Nabil Crismatt 1.490 -4.4
4 Jose Quijada 1.482 -7.8
4 Ryan Borucki 1.482 -7.8
4 Steve Cishek 1.482 -11
4 Tyler Thornburg 1.479 -8.3
4 Elieser Hernandez 1.473 36 -40
4 Cole Irvin 1.472 7 -28.1
4 Hunter Harvey 1.472 -3.9
4 Giovanny Gallegos 1.470 100 -0.5
4 Darren O’Day 1.465 1.5
4 Jon Gray 1.462 70 -44.3
4 Cody Poteet 1.457 -2.8
4 Anthony Kay 1.455 -29.1
4 Edwin Diaz 1.451 100 -1.9
4 Matt Koch 1.447 -4
4 Adam Cimber 1.446 2 5.3
4 Erasmo Ramirez 1.441 1.7
4 Brad Hand 1.435 16 0.4
4 Zach Jackson 1.435 -10.8
4 Ian Anderson 1.429 100 -39.6
4 Daniel Lynch 1.425 2 -34.8
4 Matt Bush 1.424 9 -5.6
4 Adam Oller 1.420 -97
4 Ryan Tepera 1.419 -4
4 Sean Reid-Foley 1.419 -11.3
4 Sammy Long 1.418 -9.1
4 Sam Moll 1.417 -4.3
4 Cristopher Sanchez 1.413 -13.5
4 Andre Pallante 1.410 -5.8
4 Marco Gonzales 1.408 36 -19.2
4 Matt Wisler 1.404 -3.5
4 Drew Hutchison 1.404 -23.1
4 Ron Marinaccio 1.401 -0.9
4 Jose Berrios 1.399 100 -57.3
4 Vladimir Gutierrez 1.395 -59.8
4 Dillon Peters 1.395 16.8
4 Adam Ottavino 1.392 -4
4 Aaron Civale 1.390 64 -54.3
4 Tyler Gilbert 1.384 7.5
4 Emilio Pagan 1.381 86 -3
4 Josh Rogers 1.376 -38.2
4 Dauri Moreta 1.368 -6.1
4 Raisel Iglesias 1.366 100 3.8
4 Alex Vesia 1.363 -5.7
4 Chris Archer 1.359 7 -14
4 John King 1.359 -6.4
4 Yimi Garcia 1.356 -2.7
4 Joe Smith 1.355 -4.7
4 Hoby Milner 1.354 -0.4
4 Kenny Rosenberg 1.353 -45.7
4 Trent Thornton 1.352 -2.2
4 Rony Garcia 1.348 -5.5
4 John Brebbia 1.348 -5.3
4 Phoenix Sanders 1.348 0.8
4 Collin Snider 1.340 2.5
4 Joel Payamps 1.337 -9.7
4 Alexis Diaz 1.333 -4.8
4 Luis Patino 1.325 25 -34.3
4 Anthony Bass 1.324 -5.6
4 Anthony Misiewicz 1.317 -8.6
4 Art Warren 1.316 36 -11.1
4 Tony Santillan 1.315 -9.8
4 Nick Lodolo 1.315 48 -80
4 Ty Blach 1.299 -11.9
4 Anthony Banda 1.295 -6
4 Noe Ramirez 1.290 -7.9
4 Richard Bleier 1.282 -7
4 Brad Boxberger 1.278 0.4
4 Domingo Acevedo 1.277 2 -10.1
4 Jake Woodford 1.277 3.1
4 Matt Festa 1.276 -8.2
4 Griffin Jax 1.275 -9.9
4 Huascar Ynoa 1.270 32 -111.9
4 Matt Manning 1.265 2 -8.6
4 Jacob Barnes 1.264 1.5
4 Madison Bumgarner 1.261 14 -17.8
4 Bryse Wilson 1.250 -66.5
4 Albert Abreu 1.250 -2.2
4 Jimmy Lambert 1.238 -17
4 Caleb Thielbar 1.237 -18.6
4 Amir Garrett 1.235 5.6
4 Camilo Doval 1.231 100 -6.4
4 Matt Barnes 1.231 82 -9.4
4 Trevor Richards 1.229 -2.4
4 Ashton Goudeau 1.227 1.4

 

58 Comments
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Dude
Dude
2 months ago

Blair! Talk to me about Paddack vs Blackburn. Your “confidence scale” has Blackburn above Scherzer……Blackburn’s ratios have never been good and he is 28. Paddack is 26 and looking like 2019. I saw “The Sheriff” post but didn’t go into detail.

Dude
Dude
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

I apologize for coming to you before the update lol. Some things, I specifically will seek you out lol. Thank you for your insight!

Alex
Alex
2 months ago

Hey Blair, thanks for writing. I’m am glad to see McClanahan getting stretched out. He looks great so far.

Could you pick the top two out of Sandoval, Luzardo, R. Suarez, or C. Javier?

I had Sandoval, then dropped him for Javier… then Sandoval went off last night. Having regrets.

Mr. Hooper
Mr. Hooper
2 months ago

EWB! I look forward to these every week, especially because my pitching still hasn’t really found its footing. I’d love to get your take on a conventional 5×5 roto league where I’m holding Sims, Rainey, Diego Castillo, Loaisiga and Devin Williams as my RPs, with the idea being sacrificing Saves a bit in exchange for the K/ratio bump that Castillo, Williams, and Loaisiga have demonstrated in the past. Devin has been okay, but Loaisiga is killing me. Am I cool with dropping him (or anyone else) for any of the following:
Duran, Arano, Montero, Strider, Neris, Green, Loup

I’m getting buried in saves (predictably) and Ks and would love the keep the hole that I’m at a manageable size. Am I letting small samples lead me astray or is a shakeup in order? Appreciate the guidance and your hard work here.

Mr. Hooper
Mr. Hooper
Reply to  Mr. Hooper
2 months ago

Keegan Thompson is also available fwiw

Norman Ginsberg
Norman Ginsberg
Reply to  Mr. Hooper
2 months ago

I just discovered Keegan! He’s perfect for me! I’m in a start-limited league and wanted a FA who can (1) get K; and (2) not kill ratios. Not seeking W or Sv (anything he gets will be extra credit).

And if you (and especially Blair) somehow find others like this, I hope you use this site as a forum.

aardvark
aardvark
2 months ago

After reading Coolwhips recent post on Trevor Rogers I’m thinking of offering him out. My staff is currently

F. Peralta, Nola, cease, mclanahan, bassit, framber, joe Ryan, T. rogers, and Montgomery

Do you think I should worry about Rogers? Is there another guy you think I’d be better of trading?

snapper
snapper
2 months ago

Scott Effross? Scott Effross? Entertaining? Sure. Rosterable?`please tell me how.

Shitwolf
Shitwolf
2 months ago

hey Blair I love the way you look at Pitching or maybe that is confirmation bias since I grabbed King yesterday and reas this list today haha. I went back also and read ur blurb on quality starts also because my league changed to them this year. In a weekly 5×5 h2h is there an optimal # of SP to RP to use with 8 pitching spots? We use quality start and net svs and holds. My pitchers are. Cease, Eovaldi, Edrod, Severino, Syndergaard, Ranger, Brash, Gore, Megill, Luzardo, Kopech, King, Duran and an IR of Heaney Sewald and Snell. I stockpiled mid range SP looking for some breakouts, but Im not sure if I should be more focused on RPs like you have listed. My brain gets lost in strategy thought and I dont know the optimal play.

Shitwolf
Shitwolf
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

20 IP limit on the week I’m not sure if that changes anything. Oh I don’t break my brain because when I get to a giant question mark I go to the coin! The flip has made a lot of decisions in my life such as booking a last minute sky dive in Cuba after finding out that it was a thing on a trip there. Thank you for the words of wisdom I will leave you with one of my life moto’s stolen from an old Canadian fitness PSA show -“Keep fit and have fun”. So keep fit and have fun EWB!

Jeffe
Jeffe
2 months ago

Really appreciate your thoroughness and information. Is Whitlock a must own over the likes or Skubal, Sandoval, Gore and Houck? As for Giants closers, who would you prefer out of Doval and McGee? Thanks!

Last edited 2 months ago by Jeffe
Norman Ginsberg
Norman Ginsberg
2 months ago

Blair.
I’ve been studying your results (Favorably!) and await next week’s results — seeing how they’re affected by more data and your envisioned in-process “tweaks”.

One MAJOR hoped-for change. It needs to have an (either estimated or real) innings bias. As I opined earlier, my rosters utilize “pseudo” starters for padding ratios and K’s, but these are only meaningful for guys that can provide a significant impact. Yarborough (2019) and 2022 Whitlock are the prototypical guys I look for.

Last edited 2 months ago by Norman Ginsberg
Norman Ginsberg
Norman Ginsberg
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

One off-topic question (last one for this week). I am a Deluxe subscriber (not Premium). Is Rudy’s raw data accessible by me (and if so, how?).

ChubbyPickle
ChubbyPickle
2 months ago

worth stashing Bauer at this point ? Should I drop him for one of these MIR or Blackburn ?

LenFuego
LenFuego
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

I don’t understand. How would MLB have liability if Bauer takes the field?

LG Baseball
LG Baseball
2 months ago

Blair – great article and enjoyed reading it! I like that this format is different and is backed by inputs designed to show current/recent performance. I’m always looking to move fast and beat my league mates to the next breakout.

Your pitching posts are awesome and appreciate all you do. I can tell you are VERY smart to put all this together so nice you have you on my team!

LG

Chhhhhhh
Chhhhhhh
2 months ago

And my dude Beerios throws a gem.

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
2 months ago

I just want to say that Kyle Wright was on the waiver wire in all three of the leagues I play in. After he dominated the Reds in his first outing, I ran out and grabbed him in every league on the hope that he’d figured something out but also worried that since the Reds are awful that he’d be back to his old crappy self a week later. Now he’s #1 on your list and I’m feeling pretty smart these days!

Longbeachyo
Longbeachyo
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

OK, is it true that Kyle Wright only pitched 6 innings last year? ZIPS has him getting to 124ip. What does Rudy say? And isn’t that a little concerning to you?
Also, are you concerned that Heaney is only using two pitches at this point? Provided his shoulder problem isn’t serious… (sounds to me like it could be since he’s using a pitch he’s never used before) Anyway. Thank you for the in-depth information. I love the validation of seeing almost all of my pitchers in your top two tiers.

Rudy Gamble
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

upped him manually for tomorrow’s ROS projections.

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

Good grief, you actually want a player to get hurt. Did your daddy not play catch with you growing up? Or did mommy not show you enough attention?

Primetime
Primetime
2 months ago

Pick up King over Doval?

10 team keeper QS, k/9, era whip saves.

I own Whitlock already.

Harley Earl
Harley Earl
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

Doval got his 4th save tonight. No way I’d dump him for King. I’d find someone else to cut though.

Play Ball
Play Ball
2 months ago

Pablo was @ 100 IP last year. How many do you see him going this year?

Kevin Jones
Kevin Jones
2 months ago

Points League – Need to pick one for this week:
Kelly (LAD, @STL), Eflin (COL, @NYM), Lauer (CHC)?

Norman Ginsberg
Norman Ginsberg
2 months ago

The season is still early, so I know I will have plenty of time to understand what is being presented. Last year, I totally enjoyed your column, but I can’t figure this one out. I assume this is a Rest of Season rating.

I recognize that 2022 to-date data is limited, so everything needs to be taken lightly. Still, I immediately noticed King as a “Tier 1 starter”, and I know you highlighted him in your text. And I know that “inning eating” effective relievers have value. W/o more understanding, I don’t see how someone like King (who will likely not surpass 100 innings) can have that level of value. In fact (except for K/9), King’s stats are less impressive than many other similar usage guys (Dylan Peters, for example, is only “Tier 4”).

What makes King so much higher ranked? Are other non-publicized parameters being employed?

I’ve used King as an example so that I can understand how to use your results. I’m sure that once I can better understand the methodology — they will be a great input for my decisions this year.

Thanks.

Norman Ginsberg
Norman Ginsberg
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

Yes it does. I also didn’t fully appreciate that you were biasing towards the recent past. That’s why a guy like Darvish won’t rise to the top tier until your tool can forget his 10-run explosion two starts ago.

BTW U am always interested in cheap, effective inning eaters … I think you may be my best source for this. And I’m sure I’ll appreciate your table when data gets normalize (4 weeks?).

Thanks.

martinrostoker
martinrostoker
2 months ago

Hi Blair,

thanks for this great sheet. a couple of pitching questions;

  1. i just waived heaney to get Cole Irvin. Was that a mistake?

2 Would you pick up Josh Fleming off waivers, if yes, who would you waive among; paul blackburn, Cristian Javier, Christian Flexan or Cal Quantrill?

Thanks!

martin

martinrostoker
martinrostoker
Reply to  everywhereblair
2 months ago

Thanks Blair!

I appreciate all of these details! It really helps me!

I was going to stay with not starting Merrill Kelly vs. the Dodgers Buehler. Am I correct with leaving him on the bench for tonight?

Your help is very much appreciated.

Martin

Gbone
Gbone
2 months ago

Liking an add of Fleming over Brash or Stroman?

Don't be a Hader
Don't be a Hader
2 months ago

Who of these is a top sell-high? McGill or Carrasco

phennore
phennore
2 months ago

Different players, but in a 12-team 5×5 league, who would you rather have:

Owen Miller or Jorge Mateo

Thanks,