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Much to my frustration, the tables below will never be perfect. Pitchers expected to do well will get blown up. Offenses you expect to pile up runs will be frustratingly flummoxed by forecasted failures. Injuries and weather will wreak havoc. But what frustrates me most is when we simply don’t know what order we expect pitchers to be used. Inevitably I will put this piece together doing the best I can to suss out who will be taking the bump twice in the upcoming week, just to have plans changed between the time I submit it and the time it shows up for you to read. It’s annoying! If you’re going to not like me, I want it to be because I earned it because you find my writing annoying or my opinions to be terrible. I don’t want it to be because the basic facts are wrong!

Anyway, let’s get to it and do the best we can. The regular disclaimer, obviously, applies.

What follows are our projections at time of writing as to who will be making two-starts this week, but weather, injuries and secretive team management mean they are just that: projections. To stay as up-to-date as possible, consult Rudy Gamble’s invaluable Streamonator.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookies (Must Start)

They are kings of the cookie world for a reason. A warm, freshly baked chocolate chip cookie just makes you feel happy. Sort of like getting to set your rosters knowing you get two starts this week from these guys.

Pitcher First Start Second Start
Pablo Lopez, Min CWS @LAA
Tarik Skubal, Det @TB KC
Grayson Rodriguez, Bal @LAA OAK
Logan Gilbert, Sea @TEX ARI
Jared Jones, Pit MIL @SF
  • Gilbert is an example of what I’m talking about at the top. A couple days ago, Streamonator had him projected for two starts. Late Saturday night some places still do, but we have it projected to be Austin Voth. You don’t want to use Austin Voth.

 

Sugar Cookies (Should Start)

They’re fine. You could certainly do worse than having these guys in your lineup, but don’t expect it to be remarkable.

Pitcher First Start Second Start
Kevin Gausman, Tor @KC LAD
Dylan Cease, SD @COL PHI
Marcus Stroman, NYY OAK @MIL
Yusei Kikuchi, Tor @KC LAD
Reid Detmers, LAA BAL MIN
Tanner Houck, Bos @CLE CHC
Hunter Greene, Cin PHI @TEX
Christopher Sanchez, Phi @CIN @SD
Carlos Rodon, NYY OAK @MIL
Reynaldo Lopez, Atl MIA CLE
Zack Littell, TB DET @CHW
  • It feels wrong to have Detmers this high, but he has a 1.19 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, and 11.9 K/9 with the underlying metrics to back it up. Do I feel particularly confident he’ll keep it up long term? I do not. Do I think he should be started this week, even with the Orioles coming to town? Yes. That’s why I put him in this tier.
  • Rodon is one of those guys I just can’t bring myself to be as confident in as the Streamonator is. His ERA is a solid 3.66, but it comes with a 1.68 WHIP. That’s not what you want. Past success, matchups, offensive backing, and the machines all say you should start him this week. I am, too, technically. I’m just not as enthused about it as others.
  • This is the third week in a row Lopez has shown up in this column. Is this the week he finally actually gets to make both scheduled starts?
  • You’d like for Littell’s WHIP to be lower and for his inning totals to be more certain, particularly if your league counts Quality Starts. Asking for better matchups, however, would just be greedy.

 

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (Could Start)

These aren’t for everyone. These are the pitchers that may be a pleasant surprise, or they could ruin your week. Tread lightly.

Pitcher First Start Second Start
Lance Lynn, StL ARI @NYM
Andrew Abbott, Cin PHI @TEX
Ranger Suarez, Phi @CIN @SD
Michael Wacha, KC TOR @DET
Keaton Winn, SF NYM PIT
Ryan Weathers @ATL WAS
Michael King, SD @COL PHI
James Paxton, LAD @WAS @TOR
Brandon Pfaadt, Ari @STL @SEA
Brady Singer, KC TOR DET
Chris Paddack, Min CHW @LAA
Jose Quintana @SF STL
  • At the time of writing the Marlins have not actually said who is starting their first games of the week. But if you assume Weathers does go Monday, you would also expect him to go again on Sunday given regular rest.
  • Paxton walked five in his first outing and a ridiculous eight last time out. That does not scream sub-3.00 ERA to me. And, hey, look at that! His xERA is 5.16. I would not be shocked if he ended up with a pair of wins this week, but I also wouldn’t be shocked if he only makes one start and burns your WHIP in the process.
  • Paddack is included here almost entirely on the basis of getting to face the White Sox. I’m still not sure it’s a chance I’m willing to stomach.

 

Fortune Cookies (Do Not Start)

Yeah, they’re technically cookies. Hold on, what does that little slip of paper say? “Bad times are heading your way.” Oh. Okay, then.

Pitcher First Start Second Start
Erick Fedde, CHW @MIN TB
Bailey Falter, PIT MIL @SF
Joe Ross, Mil @PIT NYY
JP Sears, Oak @NYY @BAL
Paul Blackburn, Oak @NYY @BAL
Ben Lively, Cle BOS @ATL
Wade Miley, Mil @PIT NYY
Jordan Wicks, CHC HOU @BOS
Patrick Corbin, Was LAD @MIA
Jonathan Cannon, CHW @MIN TB
Austin Gomber, COL SD HOU
  • Wicks is one of those guys who is currently projected for two starts but may be bumped out of the rotation before the week begins. You don’t want to use him anyway, but be aware.
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Hutch
Hutch
28 days ago

Thoughts on Spencer Turnbull? Looking good so far…can it continue?

Chucky
Chucky
28 days ago

Buying into Taillon? Looked good v Miami in a matinee for his maiden voyage.

Vash
Vash
28 days ago

Keeper question…would you drop Baty for Luis Garcia 2B?

I am torn…I want to keep Baty but….

Arthur
Arthur
28 days ago

Jon Gray looks like Sea/Cincy on Tuesday/Sunday.
Weak sugar cookie or oatmeal?

Scrappy
Scrappy
28 days ago

Hey LKK, thanks for the great info!

Plz rank:
Lodolo
Turnbull
Yariel
Butto

Thanks!