We are now well into week 2 of the fantasy baseball season, and it is time to start searching out waiver wire gems that can give you that early weekly win in your Head to Head leagues or pad your roto and/or points league stats early on in the year. For those of you whose leagues allow pitcher streaming, there are a number of worthwhile candidates this weekend, and it just so happens that I have listed my best bets in the handy table below. As of posting, all these SPs are owned in less than 50% of leagues, although it won't stay that way for very long with some of these players.
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|April 13, 2012
||Jeff Samardzja CHC
||Adam Wainwright @StL
|April 13, 2012||Juan Nicasio COL
||D. Hudson ARI|
|April 13, 2012||Luke Hochevar KC
||Derek Lowe CLE
|April 13, 2012||Ricky Nolasco MIA
||Lucas Harrell HOU
|April 13, 2012||Max Scherzer DET
||Gavin Floyd @ CWS|
|April 14, 2012||Josh Collmenter ARI
||Jhoulys Chacin @COL
|April 14, 2012||Jason Hammel BAL
||Joel Careno @TOR
|April 14, 2012||Jake Westbrook StL
||Chris Volstad CHC
|April 14, 2012||Bud Norris HOU
||Carlos Zambrano @MIA
|April 14, 2012||Mike Minor ATL
||Shaun Marcum MIL
|April 14, 2012||Tommy Milone OAK
||Hector Noesi @SEA
|April 14, 2012||Hector Noesi SEA
||Tommy Milone OAK
|April 14, 2012||Barry Zito SF
||Charlie Morton PIT
|April 15, 2012||Drew Pomeranz COL
||Trevor Cahill ARI
|April 15, 2012||Henderson Alvarez TOR
||Brian Matusz BAL
|April 15, 2012||Paul Maholm CHC
||Lance Lynn @StL
|April 15, 2012||Lance Lynn StL
||Paul Maholm CHC
|April 15, 2012||Ross Detwiler WAS
||Mike Leake CIN
|April 15, 2012||Rick Porcello DET
||Chris Sale @CWS
|April 15, 2012||Chris Sale @CWS||Rick Porcello DET
|April 15, 2012||Chris Narveson MIL||Brandon Beachy @ATL|
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Samardzja looked superb in his first start, and if that wasn't just a fluke, he could prove to be a real gem. Not that I like the Cubs chances to win a ton of games, but their SPs, including Samardzja (I think I might start calling him "Sammy" since his name requires me to look up the spelling every time I write about him) should provide decent enough stats over the course of the season.
It was good to see Nicasio continue his recovery from the broken neck he suffered last season. He was superb in his first start, and I would suggest snagging him off the wire before other owners in your league wake up and sense his potential.
Hochevar is a guy that was pretty much a fixture on my DTM list, at least until the second half of last season. If he can continue that sort of production, he may prove to be a late blooming former first round pick and could end up a solid SP3 for your staff.
Nolasco is another guy that I wouldn't draft this year. He does have his moments, though, and the match up against Houston bodes well for success. He is the first true pitch and ditch in this post.
Collmenter was a SP that I found myself owning in a bunch of leagues last year. His success is closely tied to his team's performance in my eyes, but as long as the Diamondbacks continue to win, he is worth rostering. This may be a bad matchup in the Rockies home park, but I like his team's chances against the opposing SP too much not to recommend him.
I have an unhealthy preference for Hammel, and his early success doesn't help temper my enthusiasm. Just beware, as I don't believe the Orioles are a good team, and all their SPs will suffer as a result. Still, it's not like Toronto is a team of world beaters.
Westbrook just keeps plodding along. I like him at home against the Cubs. 'Nuff said.
It is a great time to grab Scherzer. I know he is better than he showed against Boston. With Fister out, he becomes a solid SP2, especially with a great hitting club behind him.
Bud Norris surprising is available in loads of leagues. I love the Ks, and his peripherals are downright solid, too. Even pitching for the Astros, there is upside here.
I don't know that the Braves fixed any of their lineup problems, but their pitching is, per usual, solid. No reason to let Minor linger on the wire. I would prefer him to Hanson, just based on Hanson's proclivity to get hurt.
Milone won't provide much in the way of Ks, but he's a solid pitcher. His early season start was excellent, and while there may be some ups and downs this season, you should roster him now, especially in a keeper or dynasty league. Like the matchup here, although I do also like his opponent on the mound, Noesi. Heck, just grab both and see what transpires.
Zito was superb in his first start of 2012. Where's that been for the past 3 years? I would ride him while he's hot, then drop him like 4th period French when the worm turns.
Pomeranz is someone I would suggest claiming, but I wouldn't start him at home at this point. So this is more a grab and hold suggestion.
Henderson Alvarez is not a hard thrower by any stretch, but the Jays are high on him, and they do tend to produce good young pitchers. Facing Baltimore at home is just the cherry on top of the sundae.
I am recommending both Maholm and Lynn this week, but if I had to flip a coin, I would take Lynn as the better option. Pitching at home with a better lineup tips the scales his direction.
Detwiler joins the rest of the hard throwing Nationals' staff, and I like his potential. Pitching for a up and coming team, Replacing John Lannan in the rotation says to me his IP count just doubled over early projections. You won't find Strasburg, Gonzalez or Zimmermann on the wire, so take the next best thing.
My final opposing starter recommendation is for both Porcello and Sale. I predicted this would be Porcello's year to finally put it all together, and when Sale was named a SP by Ventura in the spring, I immediately moved him up my draft list (of course, so did just about all my leaguemates, judging from how few leagues I snagged him in). I suggest grabbing both now, as if they continue to enjoy success, their ownership % is going to zoom.
I like and don't like Narveson. I love the SP he faces for the Braves, Brandon Beachy, but his ownership keeps him off this post. If you don't have a better choice, the Milwaukee starter should give you a decent outing. I just wouldn't plan on holding him on my roster after this start.
Questions about starting pitching can always be directed to me by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out the rest of our 2012 Fantasy Baseball Rankings.
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