I am sure that some people play fantasy baseball differently, but if you are like me, you try to load up starting pitchers. Even though they might not get the steady points that a solid closer like Mariano Rivera can reel in week after week, a pitcher with two starts in one week can be a game-changer.
For this coming week, I’m going to break down the top-of-the-line options, the mid-level options, and guys who you might want to consider avoiding even though they had two starts.
Mike Minor, Atlanta Braves
Julio Teheran, Atlanta Braves
Travis Wood, Chicago Cubs
Mike Leake, Cincinnati Reds
Jhoulys Chacin, Colorado Rockies
Max Scherzer, Detroit Tigers
Justin Verlander, Detroit Tigers
James Shields, Kansas City Royals
Matt Harvey, New York Mets
Bartolo Colon, Oakland Athletics
Matt Cain, San Francisco Giants
Felix Hernandez, Seattle Mariners
Hisashi Iwakuma, Seattle Mariners
Roberto Hernandez, Tampa Bay Rays
Chris Archer, Tampa Bay Rays
Ross Detwiler, Washington Nationals
I’m not going to explain every selection on here, but I think that some of them need a little bit of clarification.
Hisashi Iwakuma might not always be a top-of-the-rotation option, but he is projected to be starting against Allen Webster of the Boston Red Sox, who has been struggling mightily this year, and Jerome Williams of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, a team which has actually had a difficult time at home (22-25).
Roberto Hernandez and Chris Archer are both on the list for the same reason. They each start against the Minnesota Twins at the beginning of the week and finish with the Houston Astros. You have to love a pair of matchups against two of the worst teams in baseball.
Finally, Ross Detwiler gets former teammate John Lannan and the struggling Philadelphia Phillies before taking on Tom Koehler of the Miami Marlins. He is not great, but substandard opposition will be helpful.
Randall Delgado, Arizona Diamondbacks
Miguel Gonzalez, Baltimore Orioles
Wei-Yin Chen, Baltimore Orioles
Jon Lester, Boston Red Sox
Matt Garza, Chicago Cubs
Hector Santiago, Chicago White Sox
Tony Cingrani, Cincinnati Reds
Tyler Chatwood, Colorado Rockies
Jerome Williams, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Zack Greinke, Los Angeles Dodgers
C.C. Sabathia, New York Yankees
Cole Hamels, Philadelphia Phillies
Barry Zito, San Francisco Giants
Shelby Miller, St. Louis Cardinals
Derek Holland, Texas Rangers
Josh Johnson, Toronto Blue Jays
Jon Lester, Zack Greinke, C.C. Sabathia and Cole Hamels are players who you are obviously going to start if you have them and will definitely not be in the free-agent pool. However, I put them in this level because of their struggles so far this season.
Matt Garza could definitely move up to the higher level, but it is a little bit concerning that he has to start against a pair of quality opponents in Hector Santiago of the crosstown White Sox and Lance Lynn of the always dangerous St. Louis Cardinals.
Tony Cingrani is a strikeout machine, and he has definitely been doing very well so far. However, I wanted to see a little bit more of a track record before I moved him up.
Ian Kennedy, Arizona Diamondbacks
Allen Webster, Boston Red Sox
Jose Quintana, Chicago White Sox
Corey Kluber, Cleveland Indians
Ubaldo Jimenez, Cleveland Indians
Jeremy Guthrie, Kansas City Royals
Chris Capuano, Los Angeles Dodgers
Johnny Hellweg, Milwaukee Brewers
Donovan Hand, Milwaukee Brewers
P.J. Walters, Minnesota Twins
Kyle Gibson, Minnesota Twins
David Phelps, New York Yankees
John Lannan, Philadelphia Phillies
Wandy Rodriguez, Pittsburgh Pirates
Edinson Volquez, San Diego Padres
Eric Stults, San Diego Padres
Martin Perez, Texas Rangers
Taylor Jordan, Washington Nationals
Ian Kennedy has never been the same since his breakout campaign in 2011, and even though he does have a big name, I would be careful starting him against the Los Angeles Dodgers and Milwaukee Brewers. Even though the opposition is not the best, he makes me nervous.
Jose Quintana and Jeremy Guthrie are two guys who I am normally very high on. However, Quintana will face Justin Verlander and Cole Hamels on consecutive nights, so it might be difficult to bring home the victories. Guthrie has been struggling a little bit, and his first start of the week is against CC Sabathia in Yankee Stadium. It gets easier later in the week with the Cleveland Indians, but I don’t like the first matchup.
Finally, David Phelps is a tough one to bet against because playing for the New York Yankees will almost always keep you in the ballgame. However, James Shields will be his first opponent, and it might be a tough game to win. He faces the Minnesota Twins later in the week, but that first game might not work out so well.
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