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 Playback.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 Playback 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):
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.
The streaming record is determined by “Was this a productive game for 12-teamers if I started them?” Roughly a PQS with a Win and a strikeout per inning with a sub 1.20 WHIP, with a minimum of 5 IP. Close calls are decided by Playback chat.
Nick’s 2023 Streamer Record: 101-75
My pick yesterday: David Peterson vs. MIA
PL Bot’s 2023 Streamer Record: 88-87
PL Bot’s Pick yesterday: David Peterson vs. MIA
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.
9/29 Friday’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
Brandon Woodruff vs. CHC – Aces gonna ace.
Zac Gallen vs. HOU – Aces gonna ace, even against Houston.
Lance Lynn @ SFG – He hasn’t been pretty and yet we’re doing this. It’s the Giants.
Yusei Kikuchi vs. TBR – We just saw Kikuchi with a little worse command than usual last time out against the Rays. He should adjust.
Edward Cabrera @ PIT – As long as he gets strikes with his changeup and curve, ECab should be fine here. Just don’t walk the whole lineup, please.
Kyle Hendricks @ MIL – It looks like the Cubs are pushing back Hendricks after all. Sweet, now we start him against the Brewers instead of pushing him to the wire.
Nick Pivetta @ BAL – He’s in a good place and pitching in Camden is somewhat neutral.
Cal Quantrill @ DET – He’s the UnQuantrillfiable and it’s the Tigers. I still can’t believe he throws 40% splitters now.
Allan Winans vs. WSN – Atlanta needs to rely on Winans down the stretch to get some innings to save their bullpen and the Nationals aren’t a tough ask. There’s a solid Win chance here from this Toby.
Joe Ryan @ COL – His four-seamer is as good as ever, I wonder what secondaries we’ll see. UPDATE: The Twins are hinting they want their arms going about four innings (Sonny went under 60 pitches on Thursday), which brings Ryan down to the third tier.
J.P. France @ ARI – He’s fine? France is a kitchen sink guy pitching for an Astros team clawing to keep hold of a Wild Card spot. I don’t particularly love what he does (why does he feature his cutter just 18% of the time?!), especially with his curveball failing to earn 50% strikes for three straight outings. It feels more precarious than I’d like.
John Means vs. BOS – I don’t love Means’ heater at the moment + his changeup isn’t getting down + the breakers are meh. It’s a Toby play as he could go six here and snag a Win.
Dylan Cease vs. SDP – We know Cease’s ceiling, especially after putting it all together in his last start. We also know he rarely stays in rhythm start-to-start. You don’t know what you’re gonna get.
Carlos Rodón @ KCR – After dropping from 96.5 mph to just 94 mph in his last start, I’m awfully cautious about this outing against the Royals.
Bryan Woo vs. TEX – Is his four-seamer going to be there? He threw over 40% cutters last time out (they were well spotted!) and his best pitch wasn’t there to support him. Let’s hope he steps up in his final regular season start – his team needs him.
Nick Martinez @ CHW – I was thrilled to see Martinez toss about 65 pitches in four frames in his last outing. I sincerely hope it means we’ll get five full frames against the White Sox. Fun fact: His last four starts have been 17 IP with 0 ER and a 0.65 WHIP combined. LET THE MAN START.
Aaron Civale @ TOR – I hope he has the pitch separation we love. This is a bit too risky for those close in ratios.
Ken Waldichuk @ LAA – He got bumped to a much more favorable matchup and with a true three-pitch mix now, there’s temptation to start Waldi against the Angels. It’s hard to trust his command, though, and think of it more of a strikeout play than to preserve ratios.
Do Not Starts
Joey Wentz vs. CLE – If you’re searching the barren wire for strikeouts, Wentz has a shot to go 5+ frames with more than a strikeout per inning.
Nathan Eovaldi @ SEA – Eovaldi’s velocity dropped to sub 93.9 mph. He should not be starting.
Chase Silseth vs. OAK – I sincerely hope he’s healthy enough to make one more start before the end of the year.
Colin Rea vs. CHC – The Brewers are benching their aces for the playoffs, allowing us to get one more Rea start. He’s not an arm to chase, though he may go five frames and snag a Win…?
Jordan Lyles vs. NYY – He has the least, I’ll give him that.
Quinn Priester vs. MIA – Maybe he has another one in his magic hat?
Brandon Williamson @ STL – Williamson’s velocity has declined across three straight starts, now three ticks below his best self. Yikes.
Ty Blach vs. MIN – Blach.
Trevor Williams @ ATL – Team #NeverTrevor.
Jake Woodford vs. CIN – There’s an outside chance of this working. Like when your friend has a country house and points to the woods outback that goes for miles and calls it all “outside”.
9/30 Saturday’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
Spencer Strider vs. WSN – Aces gonna ace.
Luis Castillo vs. TEX – Aces gonna ace.
Justin Verlander @ ARI – We’re throwing Verlander out there if we have him. The Astros could be fighting for their life in Game 162. If not, I imagine Verlander gets some rest.
Merrill Kelly vs. HOU – He’s pitching too well to hold back from a start in your lineups, even with the Astros on the docket.
Michael Wacha @ CHW – Wacha has been absolute money this season and it’s the White Sox.
Cristopher Sánchez @ NYM – He’s had two ten-strikeout games in September and just fanned ten Mets on Sunday. As long as his lack of slider doesn’t ruin him, this should be a lovely Swan Song to a magical 2023 campaign.
Connor Phillips @ STL – He’s a Cherry Bomb against a struggling offense, though he’s more polished than other young arms I’ve seen who “chuck and pray”. With the Cardinal offense struggling, I think we’ll see an impactful start here from Connor.
Clarke Schmidt @ KCR – As long as the Yankees aren’t severely limiting his pitch counts (ahem, what happened Monday?!), Schmidt should be safe for at least five frames. UPDATE: I moved him down to the third tier because of my growing belief that he’ll be limited in this start.
Clayton Kershaw @ SFG – This may be the last regular season game we see of TATIAGA…Let that sink in. I wonder how much the Dodgers will push him with the playoffs ahead and a fastball comfortably under 90 mph.
Kutter Crawford @ BAL – I don’t dislike where Crawford is with his stuff, but we don’t know what we’re going to get against a solid offense.
Jordan Wicks @ MIL – Wicks isn’t an arm to rely on for strikeouts, though his changeup and cutter are strong enough to keep him around for six frames against the Brewers. Some caution here: the Brewers have been oddly hot at home.
Joe Boyle @ LAA – I nearly put him in the second tier as I see a starter who can have success inside the zone against the Angels. However, I’m not sure if he can sit 70% strikes with his slider consistently. I sure hope he can.
Jon Gray @ SEA – Gray woke up in a major way in his last start, displaying his best start. However, it was just one game and he left his start with wrist tightness that may limit him here.
Hyun Jin Ryu vs. TBR – He’s a Toby against a team that could mess him up. The ceiling is low, though if he has his changeup and curve spotted, he’ll put through.
Kyle Gibson vs. BOS – He’s your Cherry Bomb poster boy.
Zack Littell @ TOR – He looked as good as ever in his last start…and still didn’t get a Win. Unfair.
José Quintana vs. PHI – We just saw Quintana return ten strikeouts against the Phils and poor ratios. It’s a lot more likely that the strikeouts disappear and not the poor ERA and WHIP.
Davis Daniel vs. OAK – He has decent command and was able to go 90 pitches. That could mean 5/6 innings are decency against a poor offense are ahead.
Alec Marsh (Opener) vs. NYY – Maybe the strikeouts are there? The Yankees are susceptible to a good right-handed breaker and Marsh has a lovely sweeper.
Taijuan Walker @ NYM – Taijuan’s whole shtick is weird and I often wonder how he makes it all work. One more time, why not. UPDATE: Friday’s game was postponed and moved to Saturday for a doubleheader.
Triston McKenzie @ DET – He looked horrible in his first start back from the IL and I’m sure he’ll be desperate to rebound in one final chance before the end of year.
Mike Clevinger vs. SDP – He had a lovely stretch against poor offenses, then survived six frames in Fenway with zero strikeouts. I don’t think we need more hints that he’ll struggle against the Pads.
Chris Paddack @ COL – I absolutely LOVE that Paddack is getting a “start” here. We can’t expect him to actually go five innings given his time in relief thus far, but he’s sitting upper-90s now after living around 94 mph before TJS. I’m super excited to watch Paddack here as we prepare for the off-season.
Do Not Starts
Tylor Megill vs. PHI – I don’t want to start Megill against the Phils with his middling secondaries. UPDATE: Friday’s game was postponed and moved to Saturday for a doubleheader.
Drew Rom vs. CIN – He’s performed well with his 91 mph heater and it could put his arsenal on his back as he hosts the Reds. The floor is horrific, though.
Ryan Weathers @ PIT – The Marlins are giving him a shot but his arsenal is far from enticing.
Andre Jackson vs. MIA – We’ve seen him go six before, but there isn’t a whole lot to latch onto inside the repertoire.
Janson Junk vs. CHC – We’ve seen some weird starts of success this year from Junk, and there’s little reason to imagine this will be one of those nights.
Karl Kauffmann vs. MIN – I know, it’s a shame he pitches for Colorado, not Kansas City.
Joan Adon @ ATL – Absoutely not.
TBD Detroit SP vs. CLE – It’s unclear who this is and I wouldn’t start whoever gets the chance.
10/1 Sunday’s Starting Pitcher Rankings
Note: The Starting Pitchers who are underlined and not italicized are those who could have a high chance of being skipped on the final day of the year due to innings limits, playoff implications, or other reasons.
In addition, many starters will go fewer pitches than their usual workload to prevent a last minute injury and give some young guys one last chance. It’s a weird day.
Blake Snell @ CHW – Aces gonna ace. Go get that Cy Young and I expect the Padres to allow Snell this start in order to put a stamp on his 2023 season, especially now that he’s a Free Agent.
Kevin Gausman vs. TBR – Aces gonna ace. If the Jays have their wild card spot locked, expect Gausman to get skipped in favor of a callup or something else. He’s their Game 1 starter. If it’s not Gausman, it’ll be a bullpen game or something you don’t want.
Kyle Bradish vs. BOS – I imagine the Orioles will have Bradish as their Game #2 starter, and would elect to sit Bradish if there aren’t any playoff implications here (home field advantage, for example).
Hunter Greene @ STL – I don’t expect the Reds to sit Greene as he missed plenty of time this year on the IL. They’d want him to get the innings.
Michael King @ KCR – Some have suggested the Yankees will give Cole one more start, I don’t see why they’d waste bullets on their 2024 ace. As for King, he just fanned 13 Jays, there’s no way you’re benching him here.
Eduardo Rodriguez vs. CLE – Erod has been too good not to start here.
George Kirby vs. TEX – This could be an electric Game 162 and I’d hope Kirby steps up to the occasion. He’s their SP #2, though, so if they have it locked up, expect him to get some rest. If they are already out of it, also expect rest. No reason to push Kirby more.
Lucas Giolito @ DET – The skills just haven’t matched the results as of late and I love Giolito gets one more chance to prove his worth before his off-season paycheck. He’ll go all out here.
Bailey Ober @ COL – I really hope we get this start from Ober. Coors isn’t fun, but his changeup has been far better since returning from the minors. Four-seamer + changeup should work well in Colorado.
Bryce Elder vs. WSN – Given the minefield of the Atlanta rotation, you may see Elder get some rest here.
JP Sears @ LAA – I really don’t see why you wouldn’t be starting Sears against the poor Angels offense. He can go a strikeout per inning easily here.
Bobby Miller @ SFG – The Dodgers have him inside MLB’s API, even if I originally expected Ryan Pepiot. With the Dodgers getting a bye, it allows for Miller to make this start, though why not rest him? I’d expect about four innings and not a true start here, but there’s absolutely a chance I’m completely wrong. Always.
Justin Steele @ MIL – I worry that Steele is gassed and if the Cubs can give him any rest – either out of the playoffs or locked in – they will.
Taj Bradley @ TOR – Who knows what we get here. Maybe the Jays take a break with a wild card spot locked up?
José Butto vs. PHI – Keep an eye on the Philadelphia lineup before this game – if they rest their starters, Butto could be a sneaky final-day stream.
Tanner Houck @ BAL – The slider is strong, the rest isn’t. Speaking of rest, Baltimore may give their starters a day off to prep for the playoffs.
Adrian Houser vs. CHC – Houser will get a solid leash here to help rest the pen in preparation for the playoffs ahead with Woody/Burnes/Peralta clearly the main arms of the rotation.
Kyle Harrison vs. LAD – Harrison was scratched earlier in the week with an illness and now he has one clear start to make his mark before the end of the year, while the Dodgers are sure to be resting their starters this weekend. It’s a gamble and there’s a better chance than the matchup would normally suggest. Please find a way to throw strikes.
Hunter Brown @ ARI – Hunter could very well be fatigued and his Cherry Bomb label is more like Splenda.
Michael Lorenzen @ NYM – The Phillies are resting their stud arms (and likely bats too?), granting Lorenzen one last chance to start before season’s end. This ranking could be far too low given his success against middling teams all year, though I just don’t buy the skill set. I also want to note how moving from pen to rotation can take players out of their rhythm and I also imagine the Phils will likely hold back from pushing Lorenzen too hard – they’ll want him as long relief in the playoffs.
Do Not Starts
Zack Greinke vs. NYY – Now this is interesting. I could see this being the final game of Greinke’s Hall of Fame career, which means we’ll see him go all out in this start. Makes you wonder.
Miles Mikolas vs. CIN – He’s on track to make his 35th start of the year, marking just the third pitcher since the start of 2011 to do so. Unreal. Welp, still not starting him, but he does have the chance to go upwards of seven frames as he did earlier in the week. I just don’t trust the ratios to be good enough here with little strikeout upside.
Ryne Nelson vs. HOU – It’s Houston (though they may be resting their starters) and Nelson’s secondaries have not come through.
Chase Anderson vs. MIN – Watch Anderson win people leagues on Sunday. WOULDN’T THAT BE SOMETHING.
Bryan Hoeing @ PIT – Hoeing just got trounced and it’s hard to put yourself in the way of that again with his limited ceiling.
Cody Bradford @ SEA – I’m not a fan of his four-seamer + changeup combo, but weirder things have happened.
Osvaldo Bido vs. MIA – Naaaaaah. He’s not going to go a full five here, right?
José Ureña vs. SDP – Remember kids, If you trust José, Ureña boatload of trouble. I know, he just had eight strikeouts and it was weird. Sure, there’s like a 5% chance it works, BUT COME ON.
Jackson Rutledge @ ATL – Naaaaaah.
Good luck everyone!
Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)