Starting Pitcher Streamer Rankings Fantasy Baseball – 5/20 & 5/21

Nick Pollack ranks the starting pitcher streamers for today & tomorrow.

Here are today’s daily SP Streamer rankings.

Every day of the 2023 baseball season, I’ll be looking at today and tomorrow’s slate of scheduled starting pitchers and ranking their matchups for your fantasy baseball streams.

There’s a lot that goes into this and you can hang out with me on Twitch.tv/pitcherlist to talk about the specific ranks as I make them every weekday morning from 10am – 12pm ET. If you have questions about these ranks, please ask during the morning Twitch AMA. Those are my office hours as I generally don’t answer comments on the site.

There are four tiers to these rankings with 12-teamers in mind:

Auto-Start – Just do it. Don’t overthink this, start the man. This includes “if I have them rostered, I’m starting them” pitchers.

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-not-elite pitcher or a weak lineup for a volatile arm. These pitchers have a 50% or greater chance of performing well in my view.

Questionable Start – Think of this tier as “I don’t want to start these pitchers in a vacuum, but you could do worse.” Streamers found in this tier are not pitchers I’m targeting and are only if you are in dire need of one. To play it safe with streaming, just start the Probably Start streamers.

Do Not Start – The reward is not worth the risk. Don’t do it. Seriously, these pitchers have a very slim chance of success or sometimes none at all.

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 throughout 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, there are my streaming picks of the day, and please keep in mind that I am forced to pick a streamer every day. Those highlighted in Green are that day’s streaming pick in the second tier and I’d roll with them everywhere. Those in Yellow are in the third tier and should be okay if you’re searching for something on a given day, but I don’t recommend streaming unless you’re in need. Finally, those are Red are those I really don’t want to start (they are labeled as “Do Not Start”, after all) but have no other choice. Don’t stream these guys until you are truly desperate. A streaming pick is 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.

(Opener) – Outlines that a pitcher is being opened for that day & the pitcher listed will follow the opener.

As I do my rankings, I thought it would be helpful to showcase a table of how we’re ranking offenses (in Alphabetical order):

Nick’s Loose Team Offense Rankings (Updated 5/8)

I’m sure it’ll change through the year + there are differences to be made about teams vs. LHP or RHP, but it works as a general table that y’all should keep in mind.

Alright, let’s get to it.


This year, with our new daily fantasy baseball projections powered by PLV, I’ll be competing against PL Bot to pick the best streaming option each day.

To get access to PL Bot’s picks each day, sign up for PL Pro here.


Nick’s 2023 Streamer Record: 26-22

My pick yesterday: James Paxton @ SDP

PL Bot’s 2023 Streamer Record: 24-24

PL Bot’s Pick yesterday: Jake Irvin vs DET

Want PL Bot’s pick today? Sign Up for PL Pro here.


With the new formatting for the notes, I’ve made the streaming pick of the day Underlined and Italicized.


Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings




Max Scherzer vs. CLE – AGA. Obviously the top pick.

Logan Webb vs. MIA – Best matchup in the tier and he can cruise to a Win and even 7+ frames.

Aaron Nola vs. CHC – He’s been shaky this season and the Cubs are a bit scary, but you have to do this. He’s not as bad as he’s been.

Mitch Keller vs. ARI – I’m believing in the command, though command is the least sticky of all skills. After striking out 13 (watch my breakdown of it here), how can I not give him this spot?

Chris Sale @ SDP – His velocity jumped to 96, then 95, and I’m hoping it’s not back to 94 here. The slider was ridiculous and it feels like Sale is back to his old self.

Joe Musgrove vs. BOS – The last game was rough and we’re not going to overreact to it.

Jon Gray vs. COL – The skills we saw two starts ago disappeared last time out – fewer slider whiffs (still hard, though), slightly lower velocity – but it’s Rockie Road and he is seemingly a step above his April self.

Charlie Morton vs. SEA – The curve returned 20 whiffs alone in his last start. He’s in as good of a groove you’ll ever see from Morton.

Logan Gilbert @ ATL – Atlanta scares me, but the strikeout rate is up due to his splitter and slider putaway rates. Let’s hope it sticks.

Lucas Giolito vs. KCR – He’s not chucking 94 with his signature changeup as we hoped + mayyyybe I’m too high on him as the Royals have been heating up. Nah, you start Giolito.


Probable Starts


Hunter Brown vs. OAK – The breakers aren’t as magical as I want them to be while the four-seamer is a called-strike machine. The Athletics should pave the way for a good outing here.

Zach Eflin vs. MIL – Eflin looks like a Holly and gets a poor Brewers offense. Sign me up.

Tanner Bibee @ NYM – The Mets are volatile, though I’m going to trust Bibee to have his secondaries and hopefully an elevated heater here. The overall package can be so dominant when it comes together properly.

Patrick Sandoval vs. MIN – I’ve been tepid on Sandoval this year, but he usually has at least one of his changeup and slider and that should be enough here.

Braxton Garrett @ SFG – The new cutter has revived Garrett after his disaster against Atlanta. The Giants aren’t much of a hurdle here.

Louie Varland @ LAA – I don’t like a date with the Angels, but Varland has consistently earned whiffs and is a solid strikeout play here. There’s a little worry about the ratios, though.

Brandon Pfaadt @ PIT – He’s getting more comfortable throwing strikes and the Pirates are baaaaad.


Questionable Starts


JP Sears @ HOU – I adore the high swinging strike rates, but the Astros are a dangerous foe.

Miles Mikolas vs. LAD – There’s a change Mikolas finds a way to go six here. I hate it, but those are the facts.


Do Not Starts


Kyle Freeland @ TEX – I hate it, but he’s had some magic lately. Ugh.

Luke Weaver vs. NYY – Weaver had his cutter working last time and while I’m not starting him, I can see this working more than the ones below.

Jhony Brito @ CIN – His ceiling is five innings with 2 ER and a Win, but hey, it could happen.

Noah Syndergaard @ STL – The Cardinals are as hot as any team and Syndergaard may not even last five frames.

Jameson Taillon @ PHI – Is Taillon fully stretched out to go 5-6 frames?

Alek Manoah vs. BAL – It’s impossible to start Manoah these days as everything is worse than it was last year.

Grayson Rodriguez @ TOR – Grayson has failed to get his secondaries down and the Jays are ready to punish him for it.

Eric Lauer @ TBR – He was given some extra rest and maybe the velocity creeps back up with it, but we haven’t seen more than 91 mph and the Rays are the Rays.

Patrick Corbin vs. DET – I don’t care if it’s Detroit, it’s Patrick.

Jordan Lyles @ CHW – Despite the matchup and high pitch counts, Lyles hasn’t come through in the slightest this year. Easy pass.

Alex Faedo @ WSN – He actually had his slider last time and this is a weak opponent, but the floor is so dang low that he’s down here. Weird for me to tell you the #30 SP actually has a chance to come through.

Update: Jesse Chavez vs. SEA – Atlanta is going with a bullpen game with Morton getting pushed to Monday.



Today’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings




Kevin Gausman vs. BAL – AGA.

Shohei Ohtani vs. MIN – AGA. Hasn’t been incredible on the ERA side, but we’re going to ignore that.

Framber Valdez vs. OAK – He gets Oakland and should cruise.

Clayton Kershaw @ STL – AGA. Has a tougher matchup than Valdez, making this a little less safe.

Zack Wheeler vs. CHC – AGA. Like Kershaw, Wheeler gets the Cubs instead of the Athletics.

Justin Verlander vs. CLE – AGA. He’ll rebound, don’t worry. It’s the Guardians.

Pablo López @ LAA – He’s going for the AGA tag, hopefully better than against the Dodgers.

Jesús Luzardo @ SFG – Much better outing last time and the Giants aren’t scary.

George Kirby @ ATL – Killed it against the Rangers, hopefully will continue against Atlanta.

Merrill Kelly @ PIT – It’s the Pirates.

Freddy Peralta @ TBR – He’s struggled a little with the breakers lately and the Rays are a dangerous crew. You’re still starting him, though.


Probable Starts


Shane Bieber @ NYM – The slider was gone last time and it destroyed him. Could be falling down in the future, I hope he rebounds here.

Lance Lynn vs. KCR – Much better last time, though it was against a terrible Guardians crew.

Andrew Heaney vs. COL – It’s Rockie Road and Heaney could fan 10.

Hunter Greene vs. NYY – The Yankees are scary and Greene hasn’t had his slider, but the strikeout upside is too great to resist.

Justin Steele @ PHI – He’s not getting slider whiffs but the heater has been fantastic.

Josiah Gray vs. DET – The Tigers make this reasonably safe, even if I’m not the biggest believer in Gray’s approach at the moment.

Alex Wood vs. MIA – He looked good in his Still ILL and now gets the Marlins without Jazz.


Questionable Starts


Michael Wacha vs. BOS – His command was wonderful last time, but the Red Sox are a dangerous crew.

Jack Flaherty vs. LAD – He had the velocity and whiffs last time, but will it stick?

Luis Severino @ CIN – It’s a Still ILL game, though I’m encouraged and excited to watch him start.


Do Not Starts


Dean Kremer @ TOR – It’s the Jays and Kremer’s ceiling isn’t very high. Outside chance of six frames.

Joey Wentz @ WSN – If his velocity is up, he could make it work against the Nationals.

Roansy Contreras vs. ARI – I hate his four-seamer these days, making him a Cherry Bomb on his best day.

Corey Kluber @ SDP – Kluber is not one to trust at all.

Jared Shuster vs. SEA – Shuster hasn’t looked great since the spring.

Cooper Criswell? vs. MIL – Is this who the Rays are sending out there?

Connor Seabold @ TEX – Absolutely not.

Kyle Muller @ HOU – He hasn’t been worthwhile yet and it’s the Astros.

Josh Taylor? @ CHW – I don’t know what the Royals are doing and if it’s Daniel LynchI’d avoid it.


Tomorrow’s Starting Pitcher Rankings

Featured Image by Kurt Wasemiller (@KUWasemiller on Twitter / @kurt_player02 on Instagram)

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.

One response to “Starting Pitcher Streamer Rankings Fantasy Baseball – 5/20 & 5/21”

  1. TJ says:

    I think Wheeler is going on Monday, 5/22.

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