SP Matchups & Streamer Rankings – 7/23 & 7/24

Nick Pollack ranks every SP matchup for today and tomorrow.

With the 2021 season, I’m changing how I’m doing my starting pitcher streamers and daily matchup rankings

Instead of being featured in the SP Roundup, I’ll be highlighting my SP streamer picks for today and tomorrow inside this article, while also introducing four tiers and adding notes to each table.

The four tiers are as follows:


Auto-Start – Just do it. Don’t overthink this, start the man.

Probably Start – I’m likely starting these arms, though I recognize there is more risk than we’d like there to be. Either it’s a tough matchup for a good pitcher or a weak lineup for a volatile arm.

Questionable Start – There are situations where I’d take the chance, either with strong enough upside on the ability side, or a poor offense that a pitcher could take advantage of.

Do Not Start – The reward is not worth the risk. Don’t do it.


Obviously, there will be circumstances where pitchers should move between teams for your situation specifically and these new tiers should act as a little more help than the straight table from last year.

Please keep in mind that streaming is far from a perfect play. In fact, if they work out over half the time, I’d consider it a success. These matchup rankings & streamer picks are going to be wildly different than the actual results through the year, so please, have sympathy before the scathing comments and tweets. I’m only trying to help!

Make sure to read the notes if you’re wondering why I’m favoring certain pitchers over others – I won’t get to everyone and hopefully I answer what questions you will have.

There is a second table for tomorrow’s starting pitcher matchups as well, helping everyone get a jump on their nightly pickups. Please note that these matchups are subject to change, though, and there will be times when I have the incorrect pitcher going. I thank you for your future understanding.

Finally, I have highlighted in Green my streaming pick of the day – Yellow if I wouldn’t actually want to stream them (I have to pick one every day!) – and Red if I really don’t want to start them but have no other choice. These are defined as “rostered in 20% or fewer leagues,” which really emphasizes the point that I’d be happy if over 50% of these worked. I could do the whole sub 30/40% rostered, but there’s no fun in that. You can use the rankings to realize who would be those picks, instead.


2021 Streamer Record: 62-44


Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings


  • It’s wonderful to see a long Tier 1 return to the table as Gerrit Cole and Zack Wheeler claim the top spots despite above-average offenses. Don’t overthink this, you’re better than that.
  • At the bottom of the tier are Frankie Montas and Zac GallenMontas is looking fantastic across his last two outings and should be able to feast on Seattle, while Gallen wasn’t pristine in his return from the IL, but should take a step forward against the Cubs. If you have him rostered, you’re starting him.


  • In the second tier, I’d feel comfortable starting Zach Plesac despite his struggles last time out. He’ll be another outing removed from his IL stint and I expect he’ll be in a rhythm soon.
  • Eduardo Rodriguez has showcased great four-seamer command across the last month and found his changeup in his previous start against the Yankees. NYY is featuring plenty of young hitters in their lineup and can be started against comfortably.


  • I haven’t liked what I’ve seen from Yusei Kikuchi over his last two starts with diminished fastball velocity. We haven’t hit the third one yet to be confident in a downward trend, making him someone I’d still throw against the Athletics.
  • In the third tier, I’m starting Jake Odorizzi in most leagues as he gets the Rangers. It doesn’t come with the same ceiling of those above, pushing him down to the third tier, but he is a step above those at the bottom.


  • I’m excited to see what David Price can do in a proper start against Rockie Road as he’ll likely be stretched to 75-80 pitches. This is a relatively safe play.
  • There are plenty of interesting streaming options for those that would allow a sub 50% rostership rate. Johnny Cueto against the Pirates and Alex Cobb against the Twins catch my eye, with Cueto having enough in the tank to shove 5/6 frames and Cobb having his splitter working consistently over the past six weeks.


  • The actual streaming pick of the day falls to Chad Kuhlwho heads to Oracle Park and faces the oddly dangerous Giants. Kuhl has the benefit of throwing from the right side in the spacious park and could pull this out if he’s hovering 50% sliders once again.
  • And yes, I recognize that some of you want to Vargas Rule Detroit’s Wily Peraltaand I want to express extreme caution. He’s a TEEs as we all know this run is not destined to last.


  • In the bottom tier, Tylor Megill presents intriguing upside, but a date with the Jays ruins any potential excitement for Friday evening.
  • The only other desperate stream I’d consider is Josh Fleming against Cleveland, but even he hasn’t been able to hold his own against decent matchups as of late. I’d avoid him wherever possible.


Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings


  • Lots of fun guys are going on Saturday including Kevin Gausmanwho I expect should fully bounce back after his short three-inning outing earlier in the week. Remember, he was on personal leave until the day he started. He’ll be back in rhythm to take down the Pirates.
  • I’m not completely sold that Hyun Jin Ryu is completely back, but he took a major step forward last time out, giving me the confidence to let him fly.


  • It’s unclear if Sandy Alcántara will start against the Padres as he’s currently on the bereavement list. It’s not easy to jump back into the game + San Diego is a strong team. Proceed with more caution than usual.
  • At the bottom of the second tier is Tony Gonsolinwho I heavily debated sliding down into Tier 3. At the end of the day, if I have Gonsolin, I’m starting him as his floor is decently high with a good chance of getting a Win against mediocre Rockie Road


  • In the third tier,  I’m leading with Kyle Gibson who has seen a fall from grace after two straight disasters against the Tigers. I’ve called this a Vargas Rule PLUS, meaning Gibson gets two starts instead of one before we start abandoning ship. Now with the Astros ahead and the two poor starts at his back, it’s hard to keep the faith.
  • Normally you’d see Taijuan Walker in the second tier at least, but the Jays are an elite offense and Walker could find himself in trouble.


  • The streaming pick of the day is Alec Mills against the Diamondbacks. I wouldn’t call myself thrilled for this one and I would feel a bit more comfortable with Merrill Kelly against the Cubs, but he’s at 24% rostered and those are the rules.
  • Jameson Taillon has been on a roll after shifting his approach to embrace a wider arsenal of sinkers and breakers. The Red Sox swing a heavy bat, though, and I’d avoid this one where I could.


  • In the bottom tier, Rich Hill hasn’t quite been the same since June and the Rays seem reticent to let him go 5/6 frames. I’d avoid despite facing the Guardians.
  • I won’t rule out Spenser Watkins having success against the Nationals as he’s the right-handed clone of J.A. HappStill not enough reward for the inherent risk, though.


Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

Photo by Leslie Plaza Johnson/Icon Sportswire | Design by Quincey Dong (@threerundong on Twitter)

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

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