Don’t be dour, Bauer, the Cole Sale isn’t until tomorrow in Greinke’s DeGrom! Greinke’s DeGrom can be whatever you like it to be, but I like to think it’s a fancy bathroom in the Diamondbacks dugout that only Greinke can use, and it’s bedazzled with copper plating that has his likeness pressed into it. It also features a bidet that only churns out pine tar, because you can never have too good a grip on things. That first sentence does happen to include the names of each starter from this week’s Tier 1 by the way, what a coincidence! We’ve got a nice chunk of nine guys between the first two tiers, but alas Tier 3 is weak with just four names. Tiers 4 and 5 are where the real action is as this week, making it a less than desirable streaming week. The likes of Caleb Smith and Marco Gonzales have been plenty useful this season, but bad matchups push each of them to Tier 4. Good luck trying to guess which Sonny Gray you’re going to get, the Sonny or the Gray, and mediocre matchups keep him dwelling in Tier 4 as well. Out of the mucky muck of Tier 5 you could perhaps cast your lot with “The Coors Kielbasa” German Marquez, but doubling up in Coors Field isn’t exactly my cup of tea. Here’s a look at some of the other notable two-start pitchers this week.

Tier 1
Player Opp #1 Rank vs L/R Opp K% Opp #2 Rank vs L/R Opp K%
Chris Sale (L) @MIN 22nd 24.2 SEA 9th 20.2
Gerrit Cole TB 13th 21.9 KC 26th 17.7
Jacob DeGrom @COL 23rd 23.6 LAD 3rd 22
Zack Greinke @LAA 4th 20.2 @PIT 15th 19.3
Trevor Bauer CHW 19th 25.1 DET 25th 21.5


  • Trevor Bauer (CLE) – America’s premiere anti-pine tar advocate gets two starts this week, and they are both tasty matchups with divisional foes. While the White Sox aren’t technically in the bottom third of the league in wOBA against righties, their 25.1% K% is fifth worst in baseball. The Tigers don’t strike out a ton, but without Miggy they make for a nice streaming target. You’re starting Bauer no matter what anyway, with a 2.32 FIP that is even better than his already sterling 2.69 ERA. Oh, and he’s fifth among qualified starters with a 11.63 K/9. Bauer power, baby.


Tier 2
Player Opp #1 Rank vs L/R Opp K% Opp #2 Rank vs L/R Opp K%
Jose Berrios BOS 1st 19.1 TEX 24th 26
Miles Mikolas @PHI 22nd 26.9 @MIL 9th 24.8
Nick Pivetta STL 20th 22.6 @WSH 17th 20.5
J.A. Happ (L) ATL 2nd 18.3 @LAA 17th 20.1


  • Nick Pivetta (PHI) – It may seem a bit aggressive seeing Pivetta in Tier 2, what with his 4.25 ERA and all. “He’s allowed 10 runs over his last two starts, Dokken! Are you on glue?!” Well yes, yes I am. But that has less to do with my ranking of Pivetta and more to do with why I’ve made so much macaroni art on construction paper recently. Pivetta has the third highest delta between his ERA and FIP in baseball, at 1.15 (his FIP is 3.10). It’s not like he’s getting hit hard either, with a solid 29% hard contact allowed. I’m not scared off by his start against the Nationals, although the return of Daniel Murphy won’t make his life any easier. You’re rolling out Pivetta in nearly every format this week.


Tier 3
Player Opp #1 Rank vs L/R Opp K% Opp #2 Rank vs L/R Opp K%
Jameson Taillon MIL 9th 24.8 ARI 27th 24.9
Kenta Maeda @CHC 7th 21.3 @NYM 21st 21.7
Carlos Rodon (L) @CLE 7th 19.2 OAK 25th 23.9
Tanner Roark NYY 2nd 23.5 PHI 22nd 26.9


  • Carlos Rodon (CHW) – Perhaps I’m a madman putting Rodon in Tier 3 after just two starts. But would a madman slather BBQ sauce on his feet and climb the Louvre?! Exactly. Rodon has come away from his first two brutal matchups relatively unscathed, with 4 ER over 10 IP, 11K K’s and 5 BB’s. He has another date with the Tribe this week, but he finally gets a breather with the A’s as his second start. He’s actually used his changeup 16% of the time through those first two starts but…he should stop that. It’s not a good pitch. It has graded out horribly with a -4.59 pVAL, netting just 6% whiffs with a .375 BAA. Jumpin’ Geehosophat. Come on Carlos, pump up those sliders and let’s get crazy with some K’s.


Tier 4
Player Opp #1 Rank vs L/R Opp K% Opp #2 Rank vs L/R Opp K%
Sonny Gray @WSH 17th 20.5 @TB 13th 21.9
Luke Weaver @PHI 22nd 26.9 @MIL 9th 24.8
Dereck Rodriguez MIA 30th 23.5 SD 29th 25.6
Jaime Barria ARI 27th 24.9 TOR 14th 23.7
Tyler Anderson (L) NYM 30th 26.4 MIA 28th 20.8
Dylan Covey @CLE 6th 22.2 OAK 11th 23.1
Mike Montgomery (L) LAD 14th 22.3 @CIN 11th 21.8
Andrew Suarez (L) MIA 28th 20.8 SD 19th 25
Caleb Smith (L) @SF 13th 23.1 @COL 8th 22.9
Marco Gonzales @NYY 2nd 23.5 @BOS 1st 23.5
Freddy Peralta @PIT 15th 19.3 STL 20th 22.6


  • Dereck Rodriguez (SF) – Who is Dereck Rodriguez? No one really knows. Some claim him to be the one true ruler of the Lizard-Headed Centaur Bears, or LHCB. The LHCB were thought to be long extinct, exterminated by the Red-Headed Amazon Tribe in the great Battle of the Papaya Tree. For centuries, those gigantic Amazon women would pray at an alter made of decapitated Centaur Bear heads, which of course look like lizards. Eventually the gigantic Amazon women succumbed to their own hubris, when one night during the annual Bearskin Leg Warmer Social one woman flashdanced so hard her leg warmers caught fire and burned their temple to the ground, killing every last woman in the tribe. Only then did the remaining LHCB’s come out of hiding. It is said that the great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great grandfather of Dereck Rodriguez was the first to mate with an LHCB, thereby making Rodriguez the only mammal with a cold-blooded head and the leg strength of a bear. And he’s got two sweet matchups against the Marlins and Padres this week, so you should probably start him.


Tier 5
Player Opp #1 Rank vs L/R Opp K% Opp #2 Rank vs L/R Opp K%
Domingo German SEA 8th 20.4 @TB 13th 21.9
Jhoulys Chacin @PIT 15th 19.3 STL 20th 22.6
German Marquez NYM 21st 21.7 MIA 30th 23.5
David Hess @WSH 17th 20.5 @ATL 12th 20.5
Sal Romano DET 25th 21.5 CHC 7th 21.3
Ian Kennedy TEX 24th 25.6 @HOU 5th 21.3
Bartolo Colon @KC 26th 17.7 @MIN 16th 21.9
Trevor Williams MIL 9th 24.8 ARI 27th 24.9
Tyler Chatwood LAD 3rd 22 @CIN 18th 20.9
Erick Fedde NYY 2nd 23.5 PHI 22nd 26.9
Jason Vargas @COL 23rd 23.6 LAD 3rd 22
Paul Blackburn @SD 29th 25.6 @CHW 19th 25.1


  • Jhoulys Chacin (MIL) – Chacin has been weirdly good this year. He has a 3.32 ERA over 81.1 innings despite a 9.1 K-BB% that is both terrible overall and typical for him. He’s even getting crushed with 40% hard contact. How has he been successful? A .264 BABIP sure helps. He also has a .246 wOBA allowed against 75 batters faced with men in scoring position. Something has to give here, and I don’t want to be around when that Giving Tree gives you a nice kick to the loins in the form of a bloated ERA/WHIP. The matchups aren’t bad, but it’s a hard pass for me, Jhoulys. Cool name though.


*All starters are projected for two starts as of Friday evening.




You can find Dokken on Twitter @NathanDokken.