MLB 2011: Ranking the Starting Rotations

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MLB 2011: Ranking the Starting Rotations
Eric Miller/Getty Images

Here's how I rank them. I used the starting rotations indicated by each team's depth chart on In some cases I didn't include a guy listed there (because I didn't think he'd pitch enough to have an impact) or included a guy not listed there (because I thought he'd pitch enough to have an impact).

The rotations are ranked with rough projections for each pitcher. The projections are my own, and if you disagree profoundly with any of them, don't hesitate to state your case. They are generally based on a look at previous MLB performances, how I think their career arc is going, whether I thought they overachieved or underachieved previously and in the case of younger guys, minor league stats.

It also helped to watch some of the clips available on, so I could see what some of the guys I was less familiar with can do.

Some rotations have more than five guys. Some teams are using their springs to have guys compete for a rotation spot. Of course, there is always the possibility—or likelihood—of injury, so more than five pitchers will invariably collect at least a few starts on a given team.

In the projections, I give the expected W-L record, ERA, K/BB totals and innings pitched. Obviously, I don’t expect these all to be 100 percent correct. In fact, I expect to be ridiculously far off on occasion. Weird things happen. Someone will profoundly overachieve. Someone will get hurt. Someone will have just been badly misjudged. It happens.

Note that in my innings pitched projections, I didn’t bother with thirds of an inning. For my purposes, 200 innings, 200.1 innings and 200.2 innings are the same thing.

So, here we go. Starting with the worst...

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