MLB Two Start Pitchers: Week 23
Looking for two-start pitchers for the upcoming week of MLB action? Ivar Anderson has the full list and tells you who to start and who to avoid for the 23rd week of the fantasy baseball season.
The final games of Week 23 arrive along with September. No time to lament the passing of the 2019 season, instead it is time to step up your rotation decisions to propel your squad(s) into toward a championship run. Not so many top-tier options, or even those who dwell in the middle group, but there are plenty of arms to avoid in the final set of SPs this scoring period. Choose well, my droogies, when you set your final August lineups.
Please realize that these articles feature most recent rotation information available when the article is written, but that circumstances do change due to weather conditions, injuries and general craziness with managers. If a pitcher listed here as having two starts ends up with one (or perhaps none) in the upcoming week, apologies but this article is meant to provide analysis, it is up to the manager to set the lineups or rotations.
Without further ado, here are this week’s two-start pitchers:
Only eight starters that are of the wind them up and let them go status this week. These are the pitchers you thank your March wisdom for drafting and simply plug them into your starting lineup whenever they are scheduled to pitch, no matter the opponent or the venue.
DeSclafani would be in the upper tier if he were not scheduled to pitch on the road for both his trips to toe the rubber this coming week, as his home/road splits this season show him as a better option at Great American Ballpark. He still is an excellent source of strikeouts (9.2 K/9 through his 25 starts this year to date) and he also limits the free passes, with just 41 walks allowed during his 128.2 innings pitched (IP) in 2019. His ratio stats are still a bit elevated, too, to be considered ace-quality: 4.27 ERA and 1.34 WHIP. He is especially attractive in the first outing against the Marlins, not so much when he takes on the NL-Central leading Cardinals on Sunday afternoon.
Quantrill is set to face the Dodgers at home, which is a plus, and then heads to Oracle Park where the host Giants are playing sub-.500 ball. He has twirled a pair of quality starts (QS) in his last three outings and sports useful ratio numbers, with a 3.32 ERA and 1.09 WHIP over his 18 appearances consisting of a total of 81.1 IP. He is just an average K-producer, with a 7.7 K/9 on the season, and neither opponent is the sort to improve on that potential.
Bailey came within one out of collecting his fourth QS in his last five starts, so he has been on a nice streak of late. The concern this week is that he is on the road for both his trips to the hill, and he has not been nearly as useful when not indulging in home cooking this season, either in KC or Oakland. On the upside, his first start is at his former home park against the Royals, although you might want to think long and hard before using him at Yankee Stadium to wrap up the scoring period.
Montgomery has a relatively small sample size as a starter to evaluate his efforts by, but has been much more dominant at home through his season, and gets to face both of his Week Twenty-Three opponents at Kauffman Stadium, a definite pitcher’s haven. He has a tasty matchup to wind up the week when the Orioles visit, and the A’s are not performing like road-warriors by any means, who show up on the ticket for the veteran southpaw’s first start.
Keller, another Royal hurler, also gets to pitch in KC for both his times on the bump in Week Twenty-Three, against the same two opponents that Montgomery takes on, unsurprisingly. His home/road split is not as dramatic, but still in his favor to be taking the mound at home. He is a below-average strikeout option, with just a 6.6 K/9 through 164.0 IP. He has provided six QS out of this last eight appearances.
Teheran begins his week at Coors Field, where he was roughed up significantly earlier this season in early April, so that is a negative heading into the week. He does get a home start to wind up the scoring period, when the Braves host the White Sox. He is an above-average K option with an 8.5 K/9 rate this year, although his spotty control continues to plague his mound-efforts. He is backed by a strong enough offense to overcome his wildness, though, and thus it's a decent two-start option this week.
Fiers has not suffered a loss since May 1st, collecting 10 wins over his 18 starts during that stretch. He offers great ratio stats with a 3.46 ERA and 1.13 WHIP, although those numbers are despite questionable peripherals (4.71 FIP, .241 BABIP) and his two starts this week take place on the road, where he has been less than stellar.
Smith continues to miss bats at a great clip (10.6 K/9 this season) although his effectiveness at generating swings and misses has been declining the past month (8.3 K/9 in four games since August 4th) and both his Week Twenty-Three opponents strike out less than the major league average. The home contest against the visiting Reds to open the week looks like the start to use his skills for your fantasy efforts, and perhaps leave him on the bench when the Marlins head to our nation’s capital at the end of the week.
Pineda had been doing a decent job of holding opponents down, until allowing the White Sox four earned runs in his last outing. Prior to that, he had allowed three or fewer tallies over the prior seven starts. He is an average-level strikeout producer who relies on his control to be effective (7.9 K/9 and 1.7 BB/9 over his 23 starts and 129.0 IP in 2019). Two road starts depress his utility in Week Twenty-Three.
Stroman does not seem overly concerned about the hamstring tightness that hit him in his last start against the Indians and is scheduled to take to the hill for two starts in the coming week. He has not lit things up since joining the Mets, though, putting forth an unattractive 4.58 ERA and 1.78 WHIP in four starts since being dealt to New York by the Blue Jays. Taking the mound against the Cubs at Citi Field looks more promising than the trip to Citizens Bank Park to oppose the Phillies on September 1st if you feel a desire to employ his pitching skills.
The top three of the bottom-tier denizens do have some potential value. May would be a middle group SP if he was not on the road for both his starts, pitching for the Dodgers being a plus for any starter. Plutko is also diminished as a two-start option with both his appearances away from home, although any time the Indians take on the Tigers their pitchers have a decent shot at putting up good stats. Mikolas has not been shining on the hill of late, but getting the Reds at home is worth consideration. The balance of the lower-tier SPs are best avoided at this crucial juncture of the season, as their performances are too risky by far to trust despite the dual-start status in Week Twenty-Three (even despite Mr. Musgrove breaking out the Infinity Gauntlet glove earlier this week.)
Feel free also to send any starting pitching or other fantasy baseball questions to firstname.lastname@example.org for a private response to your specific issue. The more detail you can provide about your team and league, including settings (H2H vs roto, points or categories, weekly or daily moves, roster size, league size, etc.) the better the response will be suited to your individual situation. As ever, good luck and Godspeed in all your fantasy endeavors.