Norm Hall/Getty Images
Cubs SP Jeff Samardzija
1. RHP Jeff Samardzija
2. RHP Edwin Jackson
3. RHP Scott Feldman
4. LHP Travis Wood
5. RHP Carlos Villanueva
The Cubs' main focus this offseason was starting pitching, as they signed four guys who are expected to see time in the rotation this year. The big signing was Edwin Jackson, who inked a four-year, $52 million deal and he'll bring a durable veteran presence to the middle of the staff.
Taking the ball on Opening Day will be Jeff Samardzija, who enjoyed a breakout season in 2012 which was his first full year in the majors. Another step forward could make him the long-term ace of the staff.
Matt Garza and Scott Baker will both open the season on the DL, as newcomers Scott Feldman and Carlos Villanueva join Travis Wood in the Opening Day rotation. Wood could factor into the team's long-term plans with a strong season, but other than the rest are simply stopgap options.
1. RHP Johnny Cueto
2. RHP Mat Latos
3. RHP Bronson Arroyo
4. RHP Homer Bailey
5. RHP Mike Leake
Finally healthy, Johnny Cueto emerged as one of the league's top pitchers last season, going 19-9 with a 2.78 ERA to finish fourth in NL Cy Young voting.
The team gave up a ton to acquire Mat Latos from the Padres last offseason, but he proved to be worth every penny with a 14-4 with a 3.48 ERA and giving the team the second frontline starter they needed.
Homer Bailey also enjoyed a breakout season of sorts, going 13-10 with a 3.68 ERA. The veteran Bronson Arroyo was his usual solid, innings-eating self, and Mike Leake has proven to be a more than capable starter during his short big league career.
1. RHP Yovani Gallardo
2. RHP Kyle Lohse
3. RHP Marco Estrada
4. LHP Chris Narveson
5. RHP Michael Fiers
Zack Greinke, Shaun Marcum and Randy Wolf are all gone from last season's Opening Day rotation, and in their place the Brewers have a talented, albeit inexperienced, staff.
Yovani Gallardo remains one of the NL's top arms and gives the team a true ace, while recent signing Kyle Lohse gives them a second proven frontline arm.
Journeyman Marco Estrada took over for fellow rotation mate Chris Narveson when he went down with an injury and went 5-7 with a 3.76 ERA in 23 starts. Narveson is back healthy, while Michael Fiers will look to build off of his solid rookie performance (9-10, 3.74 ERA).
1. RHP A.J. Burnett
2. LHP Wandy Rodriguez
3. RHP James McDonald
4. LHP Jeff Locke
5. LHP Jonathan Sanchez
The Pirates open the season with Francisco Liriano, Jeff Karstens and Charlie Morton all on the shelf, so their rotation could look very different a few months into the season.
Either way, A.J. Burnett will be the ace of the staff after going 16-10 with a 3.51 ERA in a bounce back season. He's joined at the top of the rotation by Wandy Rodriguez, who was acquired at the deadline last year and gives the team another veteran.
It was a tale of two halves for James McDonald, as he was an All-Star snub in the first half (9-3, 2.37 ERA) and one of the worst pitchers in baseball in the second half (3-5, 7.52 ERA). Prospect Jeff Locke and non-roster invitee Jonathan Sanchez fill out the staff for the time being.
St. Louis Cardinals
1. RHP Adam Wainwright
2. LHP Jaime Garcia
3. RHP Jake Westbrook
4. RHP Lance Lynn
5. RHP Shelby Miller
Few teams could overcome the loss of two pitchers the caliber of Kyle Lohse and Chris Carpenter, but if any team can do it's the Cardinals.
A full season removed from Tommy John surgery, Adam Wainwright should be back to his ace form in 2013, and he'll be counted on more than ever. Solid veterans Jaime Garcia and Jake Westbrook return as well.
Lance Lynn won 18 games and made the All-Star team last year before winding up in the bullpen down the stretch, and he'll be back in the rotation. The final spot goes to top prospect Shelby Miller, who has the ceiling to be a future staff ace and is an NL Rookie of the Year front-runner.
Ranking The Starting Rotations
2. St. Louis