Week Eight arrives and there are very few two start pitchers I would not consider this week. There are some new entries to the top tier, and a boatload of bright and shiny options brimming with potential in the middle tier. Let us see who can help you this week in your H2H matchups, as well as any other format your league uses.

Start 'em If You Own 'em

Starting Pitcher

First Start/Opponent

Second Start/Opponent

Adam Wainwright  STL

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. ARI

@ CIN

 

Bronson Arroyo  ARI

Mike Leake  CIN

Justin Verlander  DET

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

@ CLE

vs. TEX

 

Corey Kluber  CLE

Nick Martinez P TEX

Masahiro Tanaka  NYY

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ CHC

@ CHW

 

Jason Hammel  CHC

Andre Rienzo  CHW

Stephen Strasburg  WAS

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

vs. CIN

@ PIT

 

Mike Leake  CIN

Gerrit Cole  PIT

Madison Bumgarner  SF

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ COL

vs. MIN

 

Franklin Morales  COL

Ricky Nolasco  MIN

Julio Teheran  ATL

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. MIL

vs. COL

 

Yovani Gallardo  MIL

Franklin Morales  COL

Hisashi Iwakuma SEA

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ TEX

vs. HOU

 

Colby Lewis  TEX

Scott Feldman  HOU

Yordano Ventura  KC

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. CHW

@ LAA

 

Andre Rienzo  CHW

Garrett Richards  LAA

Garrett Richards  LAA

5/19/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. HOU

vs. KC

 

Dallas Keuchel  HOU

Yordano Ventura  KC

Corey Kluber  CLE

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

vs. DET

@ BAL

 

Justin Verlander DET

Ubaldo Jimenez  BAL

Wily Peralta  MIL

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

@ ATL

@ MIA

 

Mike Minor  ATL

Jacob Turner  MIA

Drew Pomeranz  OAK

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ TB

@ TOR

 

Jake Odorizzi TB

TBA

I have never been a big supporter of Richards, but the hard-throwing Angel has now converted me. I apologize to any reader I led astray about him, we all make mistakes and this is my big one this year so far. Kluber and Peralta were targets of mine in most drafts, and at least I got that right, so far in this season, at least. Pomeranz's ownership percentage has been growing but he is still available in about 25% of leagues, so act quickly if your league has collectively been asleep with regard to the Oakland starter.

Maybe Yes Maybe No

Starting Pitcher

First Start/Opponent

Second Start/Opponent

Mike Leake  CIN

5/19/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ WAS

vs. STL

 

Stephen Strasburg  WAS

Adam Wainwright  STL

Dallas Keuchel  HOU

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

@ LAA

@ SEA

 

Garrett Richards  LAA

Felix Hernandez  SEA

Bronson Arroyo  ARI

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ STL

@ NYM

 

Adam Wainwright  STL

Rafael Montero  NYM

Doug Fister  WAS

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. CIN

@ PIT

 

Johnny Cueto  CIN

Francisco Liriano  PIT

Josh Beckett  LAD

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ NYM

@ PHI

 

Rafael Montero  NYM

A.J. Burnett PHI

A.J. Burnett PHI

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ MIA

vs. LAD

 

TBA

Josh Beckett  LAD

Mike Minor ATL

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

vs. MIL

vs. COL

 

Wily Peralta  MIL

Juan Nicasio  COL

Drew Smyly  DET

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ CLE

vs. TEX

 

Trevor Bauer  CLE

Colby Lewis  TEX

Wei-Yin Chen  BAL

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ PIT

vs. CLE

 

Francisco Liriano  PIT

Trevor Bauer  CLE

Jason Hammel  CHC

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. NYY

@ SD

 

Masahiro Tanaka  NYY

Ian Kennedy  SD

Ian Kennedy  SD

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. MIN

vs. CHC

 

Kevin Correia  MIN

Jason Hammel  CHC

Jason Vargas  KC

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

vs. CHW

@ LAA

 

Scott Carroll  CHW

Matt Shoemaker  LAA

Rafael Montero  NYM

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. LAD

vs. ARI

 

Josh Beckett  LAD

Bronson Arroyo  ARI

Jake Odorizzi  TB

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. OAK

vs. BOS

 

Drew Pomeranz  OAK

Felix Doubront  BOS

Trevor Bauer CLE

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. DET

@ BAL

 

Drew Smyly  DET

Wei-Yin Chen  BAL

Andre Rienzo  CHW

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ KC

vs. NYY

 

Yordano Ventura  KC

Masahiro Tanaka  NYY

Yovani Gallardo MIL

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ ATL

@ MIA

 

Julio Teheran  ATL

TBA

Francisco Liriano   PIT

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. BAL

vs. WAS

 

Wei-Yin Chen  BAL

Doug Fister WAS

In this tier, the first sub-tier runs from Leake down through Chen. Leake, Keuchel and Arroyo all have nice QS streaks and going, Keuchel and Arroyo both can give you nice strikeout totals with two starts this period. Plus Arroyo is owned in less than 50% of leagues, prolly due to his team's initial poor play, but he is someone definitely to target if your have an injury or an underperforming starter on your roster. Fister bounced back nicely from his first start, allowing just one earned run and striking out six against Arizona, and has not handed out a free pass in his two starts. Beckett has been solid if not exciting, and while Burnett has been wobbly his last two starts, I still have faith in him and expect him to get his control back. If that doesn't occur, then he will be dropping to bottom of this tier. Minor has pitched well in two of his three starts since coming off the DL, and while the Braves' offensive woes make the potential for wins slim, he is a great starter in a league using QS. Smyly and his left-handed dealings has become a fine starting pitcher again, after being a strong reliever. He can be counted to put up a QS most times he takes the ball, and his strikeout numbers are good, too. Chen would be more valuable were he able to pitch deeper into games on a regular basis, but the two consecutive wins in his last two appearances cannot be discounted. Don't expect a ton of Ks, though.

Hammel and Kennedy just miss the top sub-tier, both because they surrendered five earner runs in their last starts. Prior to that, they had been dealing, putting up six and four QS respectively. Every starter has a bad outing now and then, so I would suggest that you not panic and rather keep rolling them out there for their scheduled starts, although Hammel against the Yankees is not necessarily a tremendous matchup. Vargas went through a bad patch at the end of April and beginning of May, but has since righted the ship with two consecutive wins that also qualify as QS. Plus his strikeout numbers are trending in a good pattern.

The next four young pitchers are full of potential, and well worth a speculative add if they are available and you need to pep up your rotation. Montero looked good in his first start as a Met, although he took the loss going against the Yankees. His grasp on a rotation spot is not secure, as he competes with Jacob DeGrom, who also lost to the Mets' crosstown rivals. He will have to pitch well to keep his starting spot, and that may be good or bad, depending on how the pressure affects him. Odorizzi doesn't have a lock on a rotation spot, with Alex Cobb due to return to the Rays soon. With Cesar Ramos taking a loss on Saturday night, his prospects are better and I would expect him to keep his starting role for the meantime. Bauer has been a disappointment to this point, but it does look like he has addressed his problems with his control and mechanics. His first start in place of Danny Salazar was a gem, even though he took the loss, while striking out eight and walking only two as well as holding the Padres to one earned run. He is well worth an add, if you can drop someone that has disappointed to this point, say maybe one of the guys in the tier below. Rienzo doesn't have any K value, but he limits the damage allowed while he is on the mound and has a chance to stick in the rotation in Chicago. He will be a streaming option this week for me.

Gallardo and Liriano are both pitchers that get drafted as middle rotation guys, and neither has been a shining beacon of fantasy goodness this season. Gallardo's strikeout numbers have not matched expectations, and he is just an average starting pitcher in my eyes. Good to use in the correct matchup, but I can sit him without concern. Liriano was due for a regression after his special 2013 season, and while his last outing was a move in the right direction, he is winless on the season,  The recent uptick in strikeouts is a good sign, so be patient, his bad luck should turn around soon enough (his owners hope).

Not On My Roster

Starting Pitcher

First Start/Opponent

Second Start/Opponent

Franklin Morales  COL

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. SF

@ ATL

 

Madison Bumgarner  SF

Julio Teheran  ATL

Scott Carroll  CHW

5/19/2014

5/24/2014

 

@ KC

vs. NYY

 

Jason Vargas  KC

Vidal Nuno  NYY

Colby Lewis  TEX

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. SEA

@ DET

 

Hisashi Iwakuma SEA

Drew Smyly DET

Felix Doubront  BOS

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

vs. TOR

@ TB

 

TBA

Jake Odorizzi TB

Scott Feldman HOU

5/20/2014

5/25/2014

 

@ LAA

@ SEA

 

Tyler Skaggs LAA

Hisashi Iwakuma  SEA

None of these pitchers are going to be in my lineup this period. I  have dropped Morales, but he could rebound at some point, but not until he limits the earned runs Lewis is the one standout on this list, but his inconsistency makes me avoid him for the time being. If you have him on your roster, I wouldn't necessarily drop him but I wouldn't start him right now either.

Should you have questions regarding fantasy baseball, especially starting pitching, you can reach me at ia@fantasyalarm.com to continue the discussion.




Comments

Dan 

Would you stream in h2h 12 team points league Rienzo over Brandon McCarthy or Lance Lynn one start weeks? Thanks.

timj 

Bauer, Cain, Miller, Garza, Porcello Need to start 2 this week. Thoughts?


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About Ivar G. Anderson

I have actively played fantasy sports since 2004, when I was roped into competing in an auto-pick football league on Yahoo. My devotion, and number of teams has continued to grow to the present. I began writing about fantasy sports for FantasyGameday in 2008, and was recruited to join the FantasyAlarm team in 2011, where I cover Starting Pitching on the baseball side of things, and publish a weekly IDP Report and NFL Weather Report weekly during the football season. I can be reached by e-mail at: ia@fantasyalarm.com and my Twitter handle is: @johnwhorfin

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