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Happy Monday, Razzball faithful!

It seemed pretty fitting to lead with Shrek this week after being swamped with Easter preparations and candy gathering for the last seven days. Then, when I thought about it some more, it was a bit of a natural segue since, “Somebody once told me, the world is gonna roll me…”, sounds like a song we could’ve sung while we waded through the murkiest of nasty and stinky waters from last week’s SP201-300 list. Yuck!

If you remember the theme song from Shrek, you’ll understand why I chose this for our first installment of my modified Top 100 Starting Pitchers. For this week, I’ve got all Top 100 names, but I’ll only add blurbs from our #1 through #25. There’s sure to be some “All-Star(s)” in this group.

Just some notes before we begin…for the first couple of months, I used Rudy’s 15-team mixed league 2024 preseason rankings. When I started to piece this list together last week, I wondered how many of us play in those 15-teamers compared to the 12 or 10-team leagues that seem much more prevalent in our fantasy landscape.

So for this list, I used a bit of the 12 team mixed league rankings as a base for some of the names, and added in my own spin on how I feel about certain players for the duration of the season. Do I take any of the miniscule sample sizes from spring training or Week 1 into account? I think I’d be a bit of a swamp donkey to ignore those performances altogether, but they will not hold the supreme weight that the 2024 stats will as we move through the season.

I’ll spin through the SP1-25 in detail this week, follow it up with words about SP26-50 next week, and so on until we get to the end of the Top 100. Then I’ll try to follow with anyone who has had a good (or not so good) first month of the season. As I said above, we should have some decent data points or information to carve up by then. After all, the Top 100 is kind of like an onion…

The Top 100 SP has layers…and, hopefully, it doesn’t make you cry too much

Without further delay, let’s get to the ‘Happily Ever After’ that is…

The Top 100 Starting Pitchers for 2024…

(And let’s not forget to have a good old Easter egg hunt for those Marmo Buy and Rodzilla Sell icons, too!)

 

RANK Name TEAM BUY? NOTES? ANYTHING!?
1 Spencer Strider Braves
2 Kevin Gausman Blue Jays
3 Corbin Burnes Orioles
4 Zack Wheeler Phillies
5 Luis Castillo Mariners
6 Freddy Peralta Brewers
7 Pablo Lopez Twins
8 George Kirby Mariners
9 Yoshinobu Yamamoto Dodgers
10 Logan Gilbert Mariners
11 Framber Valdez Astros
12 Aaron Nola Phillies
13 Zac Gallen Diamondbacks
14 Tarik Skubal Tigers
15 Tyler Glasnow Dodgers
16 Grayson Rodriguez Orioles
17 Blake Snell Giants
18 Max Fried Braves
19 Logan Webb Giants
20 Zach Eflin Rays
21 Jesus Luzardo Marlins
22 Bobby Miller Dodgers
23 Joe Ryan Twins
24 Shane Bieber Guardians
25 Chris Sale Braves

 

Spencer Strider (1) – Not much to say here. With the injury to Gerritt Cole, Strider is the best in the business…and it’s not particularly close. (Not that I necessarily think it was to begin with).

Kevin Gausman (2) – My AL Cy Young pick from our Razzball Staff Picks for 2024. Click on those blue words there to give it a once over. The short version? Gausman gave up 2 hits through 4.1 innings yesterday with 6 K’s (and a solo home run to Randy Arozarena). This follow-up to his 7 K’s in 3 IP against the Pirates last week should be one more sigh of relief from people who were worried about that shoulder. Hopefully, it was just a matter of taking things slowly during spring training.

Corbin Burnes (3) – New digs. New offense. New AL Cy Young contender? Absolutely. Burnes should put up 200 K’s this year, with some solid run support to help him chase down 20 wins – health permitting.

Zack Wheeler (4) – Speaking of 200 K’s…he’s tallied 195 strikeouts or more in 3 of the last 4 seasons (and, no, we don’t count that aberration that was the 2020 ‘season’). The ‘Wheels’ on the bus go whiff, whiff, whiff.

Freddy Peralta (6) – Grey said it more than once on the pod. A lot of the RazzStaff is in on this as well. I targeted Peralta as my SP1 in TGFBI and nearly took him before I took Framber in RazzSlam. I’m pretty sure we’re higher on him than anyone else on Freddy KBB. If anything happens to Spencer Strider, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Peralta take home that NL Cy Young award in 2024.

George Kirby (8) – His sub-9 K/9 is the only thing pushing him this low in the list. The fact that this knocked him down and he’s still a top 10 arm should be all you need to know about the sky-high reach of this ceiling. If he figures out how to ramp that K/9 up to double digits…Boom goes the dynamite.

Aaron Nola (12) – Following Kirby up with this seems a bit hypocritical since Nola has been able to post a 10+K/9 in 4 of the last 5 years. He’s a fine choice as an ace for your squad, but the price tag is too steep for me. A guy that has won more than 12 games just once in his nine-year career? Getting pumped for 12 H and 7 ER in 4.1 IP with 5 XBH allowed on Saturday doesn’t help his case here either. Pass.

Grayson Rodriguez (16) – This is another one from our Staff Picks article. I have Rodriguez down as my “Infatuation” for this year for a few reasons. From my February 26th article…

I mentioned Cole Ragans last week and I feel like the Grayson Rodriguez observations are pretty similar as far as a tale of two halves of the season is concerned. Like Ragans, Rodriguez had a pretty atrocious first half of 2023 (27% HR/F rate, 10% BB rate, 5.32 ERA, 1,51 WHIP). Also like Ragans, this kid flipped a switch in the second half and didn’t look back. After ditching the cutter, (his worst pitch), and improving his velocity and command, Gray-Rod corrected all of the aforementioned problems and showed why he’s been touted by some as the next big ace in the American League. Be prepared to pay up for him in drafts, but things are looking good at Camden if you’re hunting for talent these days.” 

Jesus Luzardo (21) – I mentioned the guys’ podcast earlier. Grey dives into the Luzardo well a lot more deeply than I will here, but his point of Luzardo going at 90 overall in drafts and that he’d rather take the Marlins’ young lefty here than a guy like Aaron Nola is a sentiment that I can agree with for sure. A repeat of 200+ strikeouts and a trip up our list here are two predictions that I’m comfortable making.

Shane Bieber (24) – The news bites are plentiful on Bieber this spring. Velocity is back up on his fastball. The changeup that he rarely used last year was tinkered with over the offseason and he’s comfortable using it more often now. The slider still looks great. Six scoreless innings with 11 K’s in the Guardians opener, (albeit against the hapless A’s). A lot of the check-boxes are filled on the “Shane Bieber Comeback” page already. Here’s hoping he can keep it up and move up our board.

Chris Sale (25) – I wanted to not include Sale here. I flip-flopped between him and Cole Ragans. The thin, white duke act should not be performed by a lanky starting pitcher with a history of arm issues…and I think I should get bonus points for managing to work in two Bowie references in consecutive weeks…but the crash that I expected hasn’t started yet. I found a quote from an MLB.com article on March 25th that sounds pretty encouraging.

“I’m still strong now, like I was at the beginning of spring,” Sale said. “Luckily, I didn’t really run into anything, no hiccups during spring, which was nice. That’s what all the hard work was for.”

This clip from his Braves debut might be a better indicator of how things started. To be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if this is yet another Alex Anthopoulos magic wand wave. I’m slowly going from a sell to a buy for Sale this season…with that pesky caveat of health lurking.

BUT WAIT…THERE’S MORE!!!

Here’s the rest of the list! Make sure to jot this all down so you can participate in the Not-So-Celebrity RazzMatch fight in the comments when you see your guy ranked too low or a guy you dislike ranked too high. (smile emoji)

26 Cole Ragans Royals
27 Dylan Cease Padres
28 Chris Bassitt Blue Jays
29 Shoto Imanaga Cubs
30 Joe Musgrove Padres
31 Hunter Brown Astros
32 Jordan Montgomery Diamondbacks
33 Tanner Bibee Guardians
34 Mitch Keller Pirates
35 Bryce Miller Mariners
36 Hunter Greene Reds
37 Justin Steele Cubs 15 day IL – left hamstring strain
38 Merrill Kelly Diamondbacks
39 Jose Berrios Blue Jays
40 Bailey Ober Twins Rough Sunday; 1.1 IP, 8ER
41 Justin Verlander Astros Throws sim. game today
42 Walker Buehler Dodgers Rehab assignment yesterday
43 Charlie Morton Braves
44 Sonny Gray Cardinals Mild hamstring strain – IL
45 Cristian Javier Astros
46 Reid Detmers Angels
47 Yusei Kikuchi Blue Jays
48 Nestor Cortes Yankees
49 Yu Darvish Padres
50 Carlos Rodon Yankees
51 Lance Lynn Cardinals
52 Eduardo Rodriguez Diamondbacks
53 Nathan Eovaldi Rangers
54 Michael King Padres
55 Brayan Bello Red Sox
56 Ryan Pepiot Rays
57 Aaron Civale Rays
58 Bryan Woo Mariners IL w/elbow inflammation
59 Nick Lodolo Reds Rehab assignment yesterday
60 Kenta Maeda Tigers
61 Eury Perez Marlins Elbow inflammation/long tossing
62 Triston McKenzie Guardians
63 Braxton Garrett Marlins Rehabbed 2 IP last Friday
64 Griffin Canning Angels
65 Jon Gray Rangers
66 Gavin Williams Guardians 15 day IL – elbow inflammation
67 Kutter Crawford Red Sox
68 Seth Lugo Royals
69 Gerrit Cole Yankees 60 day IL – out until at least  early June
70 Nick Pivetta Red Sox
71 Sean Manaea Mets
72 Max Scherzer Rangers Avoids 60 day IL – could return in May
73 Kyle Harrison Giants
74 Brandon Pfaadt Diamondbacks
75 Cristopher Sanchez Phillies
76 Luis Severino Mets
77 Louie Varland Twins
78 Logan Allen Guardians
79 Garrett Whitlock Red Sox
80 Tyler Wells Orioles
81 Jared Jones Pirates
82 Shane Baz Rays TJS – 15 day IL
83 Garrett Crochet White Sox
84 Paul Skenes Pirates
85 Gavin Stone Dodgers
86 Marcus Stroman Yankees
87 Dane Dunning Rangers
88 MacKenzie Gore Nationals
89 AJ Puk Marlins Friday – 2 IP, 4ER, 6BB, woof
90 Edward Cabrera Marlins Shoulder impingement
91 Casey Mize Tigers Beat out Manning for SP5
92 Jordan Wicks Cubs
93 Kyle Bradish Orioles 15 day IL. UCL sprain
94 Luis Gil Yankees
95 Erick Fedde White Sox
96 Dean Kremer Orioles
97 Ryan Weathers Marlins
98 Reese Olson Tigers
99 Jack Flaherty Tigers
100 Kodai Senga Mets Shoulder injury, threw last Wednesday

 

Omitted but considered :

Jacob deGrom, Clayton Kershaw, Matt Manning, Brady Singer, Joe Boyle, Ryne Nelson, Clarke Schmidt, JP Sears, Zack Littell, Chris Paddack, Jordan Hicks, Trevor Rogers, Reynaldo Lopez, Tanner Houck, Bowden Francis, Max Meyer, Frankie Montas, Miles Mikolas, Michael Soroka, James Paxton, Ricky Tiedemann, John Means

Oh man. One thing I realized while feverishly sliding these names around like it was a chess set made of margarine…you could make a case for at least 150 names to include in this Top 100 SP list. Needless to say, this is an ever-evolving group and I look forward to seeing how the season unfolds so we can ride this chaos train together!

Omitted and not considered :

Alek Manoah.

That’s all for this week! I hope you enjoyed it! Next week, I’ll post the Top 100 Starting Pitchers with more blurbs in that 26-50 ranked section.

Drop some comments in the chat if you’re feeling extra fired up about some of the names I do (or don’t) have here. Have a great week!

 

Follow me @marmosdad on Twitter/X and Bluesky @marmosdad.bsky.social

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martinrostoker
martinrostoker
10 days ago

Hi Marmosdad

I so appreciate your insight and common sense!!!!!

The following pitchers have become available on the the wire:

Tanner Houck – next start is at LAA
Sean Manema – next start at CInn
Garrett Crochet who is pitching against Atlanta

1. What is your thoughts on these three? Could any of them have the potential to be more than a streamer?

2. If Crochet pitchers well tonight and, I still want to wait till to see how Puk pitchers, would you jump the gun and waive Chas Mccormick to get Crochet or be aggressive and waive
Puk or pass on these three. What would you do?

thanks so very much

martinrostoker
martinrostoker
Reply to  MarmosDad
10 days ago

So on Point! thanks!

Curt C
Curt C
11 days ago

Ranger Suarez not even considered?

Gonzomania
Gonzomania
11 days ago

Thoughts on Brady Singer? One game… but added 2 pitches. Just wondering… thanks for the read.

Richard DeBehnke
Richard DeBehnke
11 days ago

We all rely on Laura a lot but as we move down the list with you, please share a few thoughts about how the picture changes for single league AL/NL only “That is guy is a dog for mixed leagues but in an AL only, he will fetch your slippers”
AL: Valdez, Bieber, Kremer, Olson, Paddack, Littell, Silseth, Clase, Brebbia
NL: Peralta, Musgrove, M Kelly, Morton, Sanchez, Stone, Alvarado, Payamps, Kinley

Sos
Sos
12 days ago

Hey MarmosDad,

Here is my 5×5 Roto pitching staff.

In parenthesis is the pitcher I covered the IL’ed palyer with. I’ll have to make a decision when the player returns from IL.

How do you think it stacks up?

Strider
Bieber
Crochet
Eury (Weathers)
Pivetta
Gore
G. Williams (J. Hicks)
Jax
Clase

I think a lot depends on how long until Eury returns and if Gore can get those ratios in order.

I also bit into the “Bieber return to form” dialogue!!

Thanks for the feedback.

Sos
Sos
Reply to  MarmosDad
11 days ago

Yes, it is a 12 team league.

All of that makes good sense.

I feel that K’s are a probable strength as well.

Thanks for the reply! Great stuff!

martinrostoker
martinrostoker
12 days ago

hi MamosDad,

Thanks for your kind comments about my staff which includes Burnes, Wheeler, GreyRod, Subal, Ragans, Stubal, Nola and AJPuk

PuK’s first start left a lot to be desired to say the least.

There are two intriguing names on the wire, Garret Crochet and Zach Lindell.

would you pick up any of them. crochet’s next start is at home versus Atlanta and then on the road at Kansas City.

Zack’s next-starts are on the road at Colorado and on the road to LAA

If yes, would you wave Puk or find another way to get them.

can’t wait for your reply. Thanks again.

Martin

martinrostoker
martinrostoker
Reply to  MarmosDad
11 days ago

so helpful and entertaining- really appreciate the details!

RazzMaTazz
RazzMaTazz
12 days ago

Thanks man!

ROTO this week start Pepiot vs TEX, at COL or use Singer vs CHW

Or just use a MR guy to be safe?