Fantasy Baseball: Starting Pitchers, 41-80

Jay Clemons@ATL_JayClemonsFantasy Sports Lead WriterMarch 9, 2012

Fantasy owners cannot survive on Top-40 pitcher rankings alone.

The key to good drafting (regardless of position), calls for finding value at every turn and the most effective acquisitions—or pennant-defining moves—are often realized in this compilation of the next 40 starters to consider in mixed- and league-specific drafts.

41. Jordan Zimmermann, Nationals
Skinny: It's a shame Zimmermann couldn't crack the Top-40 list. The age-26 pitcher should see a boost in wins and strikeouts.

42. Hiroki Kuroda, Yankees
Skinny: Kuroda has the stuff to be a top-35 asset; plus, he'll likely encounter an uptick in victories with the Yanks. A four-category factor.

43. Doug Fister, Tigers
Skinny: Fister will likely maintain or improve upon last year's numbers in wins (11), strikeouts (146) and WHIP (1.06). But replicating the 2.82 ERA is a long shot.

44. Johnny Cueto, Reds
Skinny: A healthy Cueto may log top-15 numbers in ERA and WHIP this season. Let's hope for 13 victories and 160 strikeouts.

45. Wandy Rodriguez, Astros
Skinny: Say hello to Shaun Marcum's NL Central clone. The remarkably consistent Wandy is a good bet for 12 wins, 180 strikeouts, 3.65 ERA and 1.29 WHIP.

46. Justin Masterson, Indians
Skinny: You won't find a more established pitching asset in Round 15. Targets: 12 wins, 172 Ks, 3.68 ERA, 1.31 WHIP.

47. Ervin Santana, Angels
Skinny: At age 29, Santana is a solid No. 4 pitcher in fantasyland. Let's shoot for 14 wins, 168 strikeouts, 3.97 ERA and 1.29 WHIP

48. Jaime Garcia, Cardinals
Skinny: Garcia should be a four-category factor for the reigning world champs, although a slight regression to 11-12 wins might occur.

49. Scott Baker, Twins
Skinny: The magic number for fantasy owners should be '30'—as in, IF Baker notches 30 starts, he'll post top-35 numbers in ERA, WHIP and strikeouts.

50. Ricky Nolasco, Marlins
Skinny: The days of breathlessly touting Nolasco's physical tools and high fantasy upside have passed. He's simply a good bet for 14 wins, 170 strikeouts and 1.27 WHIP.

51. Ryan Dempster, Cubs
Skinny: A potential top-20 gem in strikeouts and ERA, Dempster needs to pare down his uncomfortably high WHIP.

52. Anibal Sanchez, Marlins
Skinny: Shoulder concerns (as of March 8) have temporarily bumped Sanchez from the early-40 ranks. When healthy, a quiet dynamo in ERA and strikeouts.

53. Colby Lewis, Rangers
Skinny: Lewis can be grabbed somewhere in Round 15 or 16...which should thrill any owner looking for 13 wins, 175 Ks and sub-1.20 WHIP.

54. Gavin Floyd, White Sox
Skinny: Floyd offers modest four-round consistency to owners who believe he'll stay on the good side of a 4.20 ERA.

55. Jhoulys Chacin, Rockies
Skinny: The Rockies' potential ace could be a real find in wins, ERA and strikeouts. But the K-BB ratio is too high to warrant top-50 consideration.

56. Daniel Bard, Red Sox
Skinny: Bard has Stephen Strasburg-like potential in ERA, WHIP and K/9 ratio. But the starter metamorphosis may need a full season or two.

57. Ted Lilly, Dodgers
Skinny: One of the most consistent pitching assets in fantasyland. Grab Lilly with confidence in Round 13...and don't look back!

58. Vance Worley, Phillies
Skinny: The first of three consecutive high-upside assets in this countdown. Worley could realistically notch 12 wins, 3.45 ERA and 1.20 WHIP.

59. Clay Buchholz, Red Sox
Skinny: If Buchholz can flirt with 150 strikeouts (and 160 innings), he'll likely post terrific numbers in ERA, WHIP and wins, as well.

60. Neftali Feliz, Rangers
Skinny: Feliz's closer-to-starter transformation will likely require one year of growing pains. But the kid has top-20 potential in ERA, WHIP and strikeouts.

61. Trevor Cahill, Diamondbacks
Skinny: Cahill is good enough to make significant strides in all four categories. But right now, his high walk rate is a tad unsettling.

62. Jair Jurrjens, Braves
Skinny: A potential late-round windfall for the owner who craves stealth production in ERA, WHIP and wins. Durability questions linger.

63. Jonathan Sanchez, Royals
Skinny: An intriguing risk-reward proposition, Sanchez is a healthy lock for 185-190 strikeouts in his first year with the American League.

64. Derek Holland, Rangers
Skinny: There's plenty to love about The Dutch Oven's long-term potential. But he'll likely have a small regression from last year's 16 wins.

65. John Danks, White Sox
Skinny: I'd happily accept a reasonable facsimile of Danks' numbers from 2010: 15 wins, 162 strikeouts, 3.72 ERA and 1.22 WHIP.

66. Brandon McCarthy, Athletics
Skinny: Oakland's de facto ace would be a solid No. 5 or 6 starter in 12-team leagues. A two-category stalwart with ERA and WHIP.

67. Mike Minor, Braves
Skinny: Minor has top-50 stuff...but there's no guarantee he'll secure a season-long spot in the Braves' deep and talented rotation.

68. Chris Sale, White Sox
Skinny: A poor man's Daniel Bard, Sale could become his club's greatest pitching asset by season's end: Targets: 10 wins, 168 Ks, 3.80 ERA, 1.21 WHIP.

69. Tim Hudson, Braves
Skinny: The sooner Hudson returns to Atlanta's rotation from injury...the more substantial rise in this countdown. He's a top-35 asset, when healthy.

70. Jonathon Niese, Mets
Skinny: A uninspiring WHIP track record above 1.40 stands as Niese's greatest deterrent for not cracking the top 50. He's certainly one to watch, though.

71. Ryan Vogelsong, Giants
Skinny: On 2011 stats alone, this ranking is way too low for a pitcher with rock-solid numbers in wins, ERA and WHIP. But Vogelsong will have to prove it once more this season.

72. Philip Humber, White Sox
Skinny: One of my favorite prospects for the latter half of this countdown. Fingers crossed for 11 wins, 165 strikeouts, 3.91 ERA and 1.15 WHIP.

73. Homer Bailey, Reds
Skinny: Bailey has the physical tools, and enough MLB experience, to encounter a breakout in 2012. Targets: 14 wins, 160 strikeouts and 1.29 WHIP.

74. Edwin Jackson, Nationals
Skinny: Jackson has always had immense strikeout potential, but he's a flight risk for ERA and WHIP in mixed leagues. Let's hope for 13-15 wins in D.C.

75. Tim Stauffer, Padres
Skinny: San Diego's early-season ace better resembles a solid No. 3 pitcher in real-world ball. A modest three-category factor for teams seeking quality wins, ERA and WHIP.

76. Bud Norris, Astros
Skinny: Norris's fantasy beauty rests in the eye of his beholder. Thinking conservatively, this Astro may yield 190 Ks, 3.95 ERA and 1.30 WHIP.

77. Edinson Volquez, Padres
Skinny: A change of scenery to spacious Petco Park may do wonders for Volquez's fantasy potential. His high walk rates with the Reds were deflating.

78. Aroldis Chapman, Reds
Skinny: A high-upside pick at Round 24 or 25, Chapman could be a sneaky-good source for strikeouts, ERA, WHIP and yes...even saves!

79. Jake Peavy, White Sox
Skinny: The oft-injured Peavy is a Grade-A talent who probably deserves a better fate than the high-70s. Let's hope for 25 starts, 12 wins and 165 strikeouts.

80. Chad Billingsley, Dodgers
Skinny: Billingsley had a pedestrian showing in all four categories last year. On the positive side, he's an ideal last-round flier for mixed leagues.

80a. Mark Buehrle, Marlins
Skinny: This steady lefty has a knack for generating respectable numbers—13 wins/3.60 ERA/1.31 WHIP—with little fantasy fanfare. Move to Senior Circuit should be fun.

80b. Francisco Liriano, Twins
Skinny: You can't have a pitching countdown without recognizing Liriano's potential for wild swings from year to year. He's a good last-round buy.

80c. Johan Santana, Mets
Skinny: Ditto for one of the most dominant lefties of our time—when healthy.



Super-Sleeper Watch
Jarrod Parker/Brad Peacock, Athletics
Zach Britton/Jake Arrieta/Brian Matusz, Orioles
Brett Cecil/Henderson Alvarez, Blue Jays
Randall Delgado/Julio Teheran, Braves
Drew Pomeranz/Juan Nicasio/Alex White, Rockies
Jacob Turner/Drew Smyly, Tigers
Wade Davis/Jeff Niemann, Rays
Mike Pelfrey/Zack Wheeler, Mets
Josh Collmenter, Diamondbacks
Shelby Miller, Cardinals
Danny Hultzen, Mariners
Danny Duffy, Royals
Jordan Lyles, Astros

Jay Clemons can be reached on Twitter, day or night, at @ATL_JayClemons.

Related

    Red Sox Designate Hanley for Assignment

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Red Sox Designate Hanley for Assignment

    Adam Wells
    via Bleacher Report

    Red Sox Parting Ways with Hanley Makes Sense

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Red Sox Parting Ways with Hanley Makes Sense

    Henry McKenna
    via The Big Lead

    Angry Sox Fans React to Stunning Hanley Move

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Angry Sox Fans React to Stunning Hanley Move

    masslive.com
    via masslive.com

    Martinez Has Become the Anti-Sandoval for Red Sox

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Martinez Has Become the Anti-Sandoval for Red Sox

    Zachary D. Rymer
    via Bleacher Report