The List 8/21: Top 100 Starting Pitchers – Week 21 Fantasy Baseball 2023

8/21 - Top 100 Fantasy Baseball Starting Pitcher Rankings for 2023

Welcome to The List, where I rank the Top 100 SP for Fantasy Baseball every Monday of the year.

Want an earlier update to The List? Join me on Mondays at 2:00 pm ET as I live-stream its creation each week!

Have questions? My “office hours” are on Playback.tv 10:00 am – 12:00 pm ET Monday – Friday + the aforementioned stream of The List.

For each edition of The List, I have a set of rules to outline my thought process and how to best use these rankings. Please take note:

  1. This is 5×5, 12-teamer, H2H format focused. It generally is the same as roto as well, but make sure you adjust accordingly.
  2. We have two tables to review before the notes and rankings. First is an injury table that outlines where players would be relatively ranked if fully healthy. It’s the best way to tackle how to value players on the IL.
  3. If a player is on the IL or not confirmed inside the rotation, they aren’t on the List. That includes injuries and guys in the minors, but there are exceptions for players who are expected to be in the rotation but are being skipped this week.
  4. Updated 6/6 – I am now adding an “Honorable Mentions” at the end of The List to cover all the other SP who are off The List. It replaces the “Others I Considered” table.
  5. Since this is a 12-teamer, I heavily weigh upside in the back-half of the rankings. Tier 10 is likely going to underperform those in Tier 11 across a full season, but it’s in your best interest to chase Tier 10’s ceiling vs. settling for Tier 11’s floor.
  6. I’ve made a decision to limit labels to just one label per player, with few exceptions for a second. It streamlines the process much better and hopefully gives you a more targeted understanding of the player.
  7. The notes outline oh-so-much to help your team. Please read the notes if you can instead of just scrolling to the bottom.

 

Let’s get to the tables. First are all of our injured compatriots:

Injured Players Table

I made a decision last year: I removed the “Preseason tiers” and changed “tiers” to “Relative Rank” as it’ll be more consistent week-to-week — Tiers change while their relative rank does not.

Please understand that “70-80” does not guarantee the player will be exactly in that range when they return. Rankings are 100% relative to the landscape and while this table reflects where they would sit in a vacuum, it’s a fluid creature. Sometimes there are oh-so-many options, sometimes I want to see them healthy and stretched out again, and others we’re starving for pitchers and they jump higher than “70-80”. It’s a loose reference point and why it’s called “relative ranking.” It’s difficult to update this week-to-week and I apologize if the ranking is different when the player actually returns from the IL. I hope it helps!

One last point about that – oftentimes pitchers need an extra week or two to ramp up once they do return to the majors. It’s why Still ILL exists and the “relative rank” you see is when those guys have shaken off their rust. Will they be back to normal in their first start or will they need a few? I have no idea! Those ranks are to show what I’d expect once they are fully back to normal.

I added something new to The List this season. It’s a small table of the prospects I’m personally excited about who would jump up The List quickly if they were confirmed in the rotation. Please don’t read too much into these, there are far better prospect analysts out there than me. Still, I think this table will help you quickly stay on top of who should be on your radar.

They are ordered by my general preference/focus on those guys right now. If any of these are called up, they should be added to your 12-teamers ASAP. Some guys aren’t here and that’s due to my own belief they aren’t as pressing as the ones below. I could be very wrong there.

Colors: Green = Most excited about. Yellow = Solid but not as urgent. Orange = Will likely take some time.

Prospect Pitchers To Consider

 

Lastly, I heavily recommend you follow my daily SP Roundup that outlines all pitcher performances through the season, as each week’s update will reflect the comments and findings from those daily articles. If you’re unfamiliar with some of the players listed, I highly recommend that you read my 45,000+ Top 300 Starting Pitchers from February. Many things will have changed, but the root of my perception of these players is outlined there.

Let’s get to it.

 

Ranking Notes

 

  • This is your reminder to please read these notes as they’ll tell you plenty about why “someone moved up” or “why is he at #X?!”
  • Seriously. Read the notes.

 

  • I know there are going to be a ton of comments about I hate how much these rankings change each week and I’m going to get out ahead of them here.
  • These rankings mostly change in the back half of The List as that’s your waiver wire. Those aren’t the players you hold onto throughout the year like your SPs 1-4, which means we’re going to be a bit more chaotic and roll with the waves more aggressively. If I see elements that suggest a pitcher could be a Top 40 arm, I’m going to move up a ton from the 80s to the 60s. Shazam, there we go.

 

  • As is tradition, I need to tell you about the guys who were removed and added from the Top 60, so you have context for the ranking shifts.
  • Highest Added: Carlos Rodón (51), Hunter Greene (54), Bryan Woo (55)
  • Highest Removed: None
  • Net Change Inside Top 60:  (-3)
  • Please understand how this affects movement across The List.

 

I’ve changed the notes this year to have a small blurb on everyone. Much easier to write and follow along in my view and it matches the formatting of the streamers. Please leave your feedback on this change – is it better or worse?

 

Tier 1 – The True Aces

 

1. Spencer Strider – Aces gonna ace.

2. Gerrit Cole – Aces gonna ace. Except for the last two starts and whatever.

3. Luis Castillo – Aces gonna ace. Castillo is dope and makes you feel dope.

4. Kevin Gausman – Aces gonna ace. The velocity is back to normal.

 

Tier 2 – AGA We Hope Don’t Fall Off

 

5. Zac Gallen – He stumbled last time out with his curveball and I don’t expect that to continue. Tough schedule ahead, and we’re going head-on into the storm.

6. Tyler Glasnow – He’s still healthy and shouldn’t allow so much damage on his slider again.

7. Zack Wheeler – Aces gonna ace. He allowed 4 ER on five hits to start the Sunday night game, then earned 21 outs with just three baserunners thereafter.

8. Pablo López – Aces gonna ace. PabLó has been so dang good since his first month or two.

9. Max Scherzer – Scherzer just had a super weird start and you can’t rely on that.

10. Blake Snell – He hasn’t fallen off yet, in fact, he executed arguably his most eloquent BSB last time out.

11. Shohei Ohtani – We got through a start without injury issues and we’re good to go.

 

Tier 3 – Potential AGA

 

12. Sandy Alcantara – He’s getting awfully close to that tag after surviving against the Dodgers. It wasn’t thriving, though, and if he’s able to do that against the Padres across 7+ frames, he may earn it. He’s been absolutely phenomenal since July 7th.

13. Brandon Woodruff – I was hoping he’d get the AGA label after his start against the Rangers, but it wasn’t meant to be. He should get it soon enough.

14. Max Fried – Fried has been a little off despite his Still ILL start looking divine. I don’t have a reason to believe he won’t reclaim his old form soon enough.

15. Clayton Kershaw – He’s TATIAGAeven if the slider has been worse since his return from the IL.

16. Corbin Burnes – The cutter was far better last time out, catalyzing a Golden GoalPlease do it again.

17. George Kirby – Kirby followed nine shutout frames with a duck against the Royals. That’s baseball, Suzyn. I hope the slider whiffs return soon.

18. Julio Urías – He’s looking like his old self, I just want to see it for another start or two before giving him the tag.

19. Freddy Peralta – Peralta has been on fire lately, but will it last? He actually executed the BSB in his last start, which is shocking considering he was known as “Professor Chaos” for years. By who? BY ME.

20. Logan Webb – Webb has the unfortunate luck of getting Atlanta twice, but should be all kinds of steady outside of it.

 

Tier 4 – They Feel Like Aces But Aren’t

 

21. Zach Eflin – Eflin had a weird start last week and recovered as you’d expect this time around, even if it wasn’t with a pile of strikeouts.

22. Justin Verlander – He’s fine. Don’t expect a 25%+ strikeout rate, but pitching for the Astros will give him a good number of Wins down the stretch with his solid ratios.

23. Yu Darvish – Darvish continues to alter his approach, with curveballs getting a major focus this time around. I hope that sticks.

24. Tarik Skubal – I adore Skubal’s four-seamer and with an improved changeup and slider, he’s pitching at his peak.

25. Kodai Senga – Senga has been a stud for sixteen starts, returning a 2.82 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, and a 29% Strikeout rate across his last 93 innings. Too bad it was just six Wins…silly Mets.

26. Aaron Nola – Nola is having one of those strange seasons and I still believe he carries the skills to dominate with every start he makes. The ERA makes you squirm, but the WHIP, strikeouts, and Wins are still very much worthwhile. The homerun rate will fall.

27. Kenta Maeda – Maeda hasn’t had both his slider and splitter on point across his last two starts, with the most recent game featuring the worst slider I’ve seen from him since returning from the IL. I’d expect it to come back soon.

28. Kyle Bradish – The move away from his four-seamer in favor of sinkers, sliders, and curveballs has worked wonders.

29. Logan Gilbert – His new slider is doing great things, but the four-seamer hasn’t been what it needs to be for Gilbert to take the next step.

30. James Paxton – I’m worried about Paxton’s four-seamer as it’s looked worse across his last four starts + the Astros and Dodgers don’t make for fun matchups.

31. Bryce Miller – Miller is solid, but still rough around the edges with his four-seamer sometimes failing him + the secondaries failing to develop as much as we hoped.

 

Tier 5 – Legit Potential With A Good Floor

 

32. Yusei KikuchiKikuchi holds a 2.63 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, and 28% strikeout rate across his last 13 starts. That’s pretty dang awesome and it’s all thanks to his improved curve and slider.

33. Grayson Rodriguez – Grayson has been far better since returning from the minors, even improving on locating his changeups and sliders at the bottom of the zone. He’s amped up with 98 mph four-seamers upstairs as well and it’s all kinds of wonderful.

34. Sonny Gray – Gray has been up and down all season and yet, he hasn’t left your teams. It’s hard not to lean on him through the end of the year at this point.

35. Eury Pérez – Pérez was electric against the Dodgers and the gloves are coming off as the Marlins let him toss 90 pitches. The slider and curve are there, the heater is fantastic, it’s time to enjoy the kid.

36. Jesús Luzardo – It’s sad to see Luzardo go in the other direction. It’s been a horrible stretch for Luzardo, here allowing a trio of home runs to the Astros on three mistake pitches in the first frame. He’s not destined for the wire throughout September and even with the Padres up next, I think Luzardo is still worth holding onto. The four-seamer, slider, and changeup are still all legit pitches.

37. Justin Steele – Steele’s command has been off for a good while, inflating the WHIP over the last month or so. It seems like he’s headed in the right direction, but keep an eye on his command moving forward. If he doesn’t correct it soon, I may lose hope that he’ll redeem himself before your playoffs are over.

38. Andrew Abbott – Abbott is solid. He still carries the ceiling of those magical ten strikeout games, while he’ll likely sport good fastballs and either his sweeper or curveball taking down batters. Don’t let the recent dips scare you away.

39. Merrill Kelly – I’m not used to seeing Kelly stumble like he did last time out and he should dominate with four-seamers and changeups again soon enough.

40. Lance Lynn – The Dodgers legit fixed him. He’s not a primo stud, but he’s absolutely better and worth your attention given the Win chance + strikeout potential.

41. Bobby Miller – As long as Miller gets his slider and curveball over the plate, great things happen. Once he learns how to utilize his slider for whiffs and called strikes, he’ll soar.

 

Tier 6 – The Hollys + Get Your Act Together

 

42. Framber Valdez – It’s been rough rostering Valdez, hasn’t it? Fotunately, you have an easy choice with the Tigers next up and I don’t think any of us truly believe Valdez is destined for mediocrity. Just throw fewer sinkers, okay?

43. Tanner Bibee – Bibee’s new slider has certainly helped in the second half, but I still question its command + the rest of his repertoire is suspect. The four-seamer is good, not great, while the change and curve show up when they please. The results have been sparkling, I’m sadly skeptical it’ll last through September.

44. Bailey Ober – It’s a rough patch at the moment, but the four-seamer still dominates at the top of the zone. Stick with him.

45. Chris Sale – I’m terrified that Sale maxed out at 93.6 mph in his last start, hovering 91 mph across the game. I hope it’s a Civale situation where he bounces back in his next outing, but throw in the possible injury with Astros + Dodgers and you get a whole lot of anxiety.

46. Chris Bassitt – Bassitt is opponent agnostic and has been absolutely fine in your staff. Let the man cook.

47. José Berríos – The same goes for Berríos. Axing the four-seamer for sinkers and curves has been a wonderful transition.

48. Eduardo Rodriguez – I like seeing Erod at 93 mph and flexing slider whiffs is a cool thing. Even if I don’t expect the latter to stick, he’s been a quality arm at the back end of your staff.

49. Jordan Montgomery – The trade to Texas only helps (Win chance!) as Monty has hovered at a 3.50 ERA with a 1.20 WHIP and a 22% strikeout rate all year. It’s not stellar, but I won’t overlook the help he provides each week.

 

Tier 7 – Exciting Confusion

 

50. Gavin Williams – We know the upside when the breakers are working, we also know how bad it can get when his curve and slider run amok. I wish I had more faith in those secondaries appearing on a given night.

51. Carlos Rodón – He’s returning from the IL and I still believe he can replicate the Rodón we saw in 2021 and 2022. It may take a start or two, but if he’s hitting 96 mph in his Still ILL start, watch out.

52. Lucas Giolito – Giolito showed some legit life in his last outing, pumping 94.8 mph ched and locating well with his pitches. I hope that Velocity is here to stay (he’s been around 92/93 all year).

53. Cole Ragans – Y’all know I believe in his arsenal (throw more four-seamers + cutters and fewer changeups please) and now that the Cubs are out of the way, he’s able to flex his muscles against OAK, PIT, CHW. Yesssssss.

54. Hunter Greene – It was a horrible return to the majors against the Jays…if you just looked at the box score. His overall slider and four-seamer command was actually pretty good, with the Jays jumping on nearly every mistake he made.

55. Bryan Woo – He’s coming off the IL this week and has a solid schedule ahead. I love the four-seamer and sinker Woo possesses and I hope the slider comes along.

56. Dylan Cease – Cease went into Coors and had a strong arsenal, but Coors was Coors. He’s a classic Cherry Bomb with upside to plateau.

57. Charlie Morton – The Win chance mixed with strikeout ability makes Morton still worthwhile. Those clunkers can be rough, I know.

58. Jon Gray – I see Gray on the upswing with his elite slider and a four-seamer that’s being mixed effectively in-and-out of the zone. He’s like the Tier 8 guys but with a little more upside.

 

Tier 8 – The Legit Tobys

 

59. Brayan Bello – He is what he is and that’s cool with us.

60. Kyle Hendricks – Ditto. That curve ain’t coming back.

61. José Urquidy – Urquidy is at the top of his game and has a solid schedule with the Astros. Works for me.

62. Michael Wacha – Wacha came back from the IL and all signs are good to go. Guess we’re starting him until further notice as a Toby.

63. Seth Lugo – Lugo has been an arm to trust against all but the toughest offenses. That’s a Toby.

64. J.P. France – Same goes for France, who was re-instated after a brief move to the bullpen. I don’t think his repertoire contains an elite pitch inside it, but the kitchen sink works for him.

 

Tier 9 – Fun And Fine

 

65. Brady Singer – The slider is still perfectly spotted = I’m still leaning in.

66. Hunter Brown – Ho boy. The slider and curve were lost in his last outing and when he has them working, Brown can cruise through lineups. It’s hard to tell when these days, though.

67. Jack Flaherty – Flaherty is better than the results have been, but the floor is cracking more than we’d like.

68. Mitch Keller – The man just fanned 12 and earned cutter + sweeper whiffs. WELP, GUESS WE’RE BACK ON THE TRAIN.

69. Cristopher Sánchez – He’s been a safe arm, but it may come to a close in two weeks as the schedule gets a whole lot tougher.

70. Logan Allen – I don’t dislike Allen, I just don’t think he’s much more than a Toby without the same stability of those in Tier 8. The four-seamer isn’t that great and the slider + changeup can be good, but I don’t expect it as much as I’d like.

71. Reid Detmers – He just took down the Rangers and yet it was on the back of wild intent – pitches nabbed edges he wasn’t aiming for constantly. I’m worried there’s still work to be done here.

72. Cristian Javier – This is the week. I’M TELLING Y’ALL. Seriously though, his breakers have earned strikes across his last two starts, but the four-seamer hasn’t pulled its weight. The heater has been the more dependable of the two and it seems like he’s on the cusp of finally getting back to form. But yeah, I know. He’s still only at #72 until we see it.

 

Here is where prospect pitchers would appear if they are called up as I feel those in Tier 9 and below could be off your teams next week (or now?) in 12-teamers.

 

Tier 10 – The Streamers You Haven’t Let Go

 

73. Dean Kremer – His cutter is good, most of the time the four-seamer is too. It’s fine.

74. Aaron Civale – Civale gets the job done for the Rays as he’s back to 65%+ cutters and curves. Works for me.

75. Hyun Jin Ryu – Ryu is getting chases on the change and curve and I hope it sticks.

76. Clarke Schmidt – With the Atlanta start out of the way, you should be fine with Schmidt. It’s not the best ceiling, but maybe he can keep his new curve approach around.

77. Dane Dunning – The slider and cutter weren’t relied upon as much against the Brewers, but I’d still give it another go in hopes he can find the strikeouts again.

78. Allan Winans – He was called up by Atlanta for a two-step this week and I’d lean in on the command-focused arm.

79. Michael Lorenzen – Lorenzen is a Toby who can take advantage of poor offenses…most of the time.

80. Zack Littell – Littell is a solid Win chance arm with a good high four-seamer and a slider he usually gets down. He’ll go 5-6 frames against middling lineups and makes for a solid pickup.

81. Graham Ashcraft – Ashcraft has been absurdly good since returning from the IL and yet I’m weirded out by his slider looking more like a cutter in his last start to pair with his…cutter.

82. Braxton Garrett – Garrett just survived the Astros and Dodgers, with the latter start featuring the best cutter and slider command I’ve seen from him since his hot stretch.

83. Dakota HudsonGet this, Hudson has a 23% SwStr rate slider and has upped its usage to 40% all of a sudden. It’s over a small four-start span, but maybe there’s something legit behind it.

84. Chase SilsethSilseth hasn’t had the same slider and splitter that we once saw, but they aren’t too far away from their great selves. He could get it back as soon as his next outing…or Griffin Canning can get the majority of innings and snatch the starting spot from him. Don’t hold onto Silseth too tightly.

 

Tier 11 – Stream Considerations

 

85. Wade Miley – He’s fine, but not someone I think I’d be holding onto as a Toby

86. Bryce Elder – He’s still a worthy guy to stream. The sinker is armside, the slider is gloveside, and being allowed to go 5+ frames for Atlanta is the dream.

87. Javier Assad – Assad’s cutter has been well spotted and he jams right-handers effectively with his sinker.

88. Mike Clevinger – Clevinger has been performing well lately, featuring a better slider than we’d seen previously. And yet…I don’t buy it. Take a shot for this two-step if you like, personally I think he doesn’t do enough with his four-seamer and slider that make up 80% of his arsenal. Neither pitch is elite.

89. JP Sears – Sears has an exciting four-seamer and slider…at times. He’s a desperate strikeout play who has been through a recent rough patch, though the schedule should get better int the near future.

90. Taijuan Walker – Walker is coming back after getting a start skipped after sitting below 91 mph. If he’s back to 93/94 mph, he’ll be solid against the Giants, making for a worthwhile pickup in the short term.

91. José Quintana – As much as I adore what Quintana has done lately, he gets Atlanta + the Dodgers up next. You don’t want to start him for those outings and you’re likely better off dropping him and returning in September. I completely understand if you’d like to hold through it, though. It’s the only reason he’s still on The List.

92. Brandon Pfaadt – Pfaadt has been far better than expected recently, fueled by a high CSW on his sweeper and four-seamers that have avoided grass. I question if those two offerings are actually legit, but with a decent schedule ahead, you could do worse taking a shot. Maybe the changeup returns, too.

93. Brandon Williamson – Williamson increased his four-seamer and cutter velocity and recently added an effective changeup to the mix. It’s a discount Miley with potential to be a little more if the command gets better.

94. Cole Irvin – He took advantage of a great matchup against the Athletics and now gets Rockie Road for a winning team.

95. Zack Thompson – He looks solid, but not polished. There’s some intrigue if Thompson can figure out how to harness his discount-Kershaw arsenal.

96. Jameson Taillon – Despite the pedestrian arsenal, Taillon has squeezed out the most from it lately and has a solid schedule ahead.

97. Paul Blackburn – Blackburn has a pair of weak teams on the horizon and could come through with his changeup and slider.

98. Kyle Gibson Oh look, Gibson had clunkers against the Mariners and Athletics. Looks like we have no idea what to do with you again.

99. Andrew Heaney He’s still a Cherry Bomb in the worst way.

100. Kyle Harrison – He’s getting the call for the Giants and my expectations are minimal. Harrison sat under 95 mph in his last Triple-A start and hasn’t gone five frames all season. The command wasn’t special either and I worry he’s going to get trounced. Not the worst spec add if he sticks around to host the Reds in the following start.

 

Honorable Mentions

 

You’re getting little blurbs on everyone else I can think of. I can’t help myself. This is not in ranking order.

 

Bailey Falter – He’s the last one out as there is some streaming allure. The ceiling isn’t all too high, though.

Taj Bradley – It’s possible we see Bradley return to the rotation at the end of this week, which would have him slotted Tier 9.

Kutter Crawford – With the Dodgers + Astros up next, it doesn’t make sense to hold onto Crawford

Tanner Houck – Looks like the Red Sox are bringing back Houck into the rotation…and he gets the Astros twice. Bummer.

Nick Pivetta – He’s leaving the rotation (it’s possible it’s a six-man rotation) and heading back to bullpen, right before a gauntlet of Astros + Dodgers. At least the Sawx are making it easier for you to let him go.

Joe Ryan – If he returns this week, he’d be inside the Top 30. Not even a Still ILLjust let him fly.

Nick Lodolo – If we see Lodolo before next week, he’d be around the 50s/60s. We know the ceiling, it’s all about command. There isn’t enough of a track record to bank on that command returning out of the gate.

Drew Rom – Likely a spot starter for the Cardinals, though he did just fan 18 in his last two starts…with a 91 mph heater. Seriously, he fanned ten with the pitch returning 15/57 whiffs and it’s all kinds of strange. Maybe it’s a legit four-seamer even at that velocity?

Patrick Corbin – Whoa whoa whoa, a legit BSB approach? This can’t be real…right? I’m kinda tempted to give it a shot…but nah.

Jake Irvin – There is some intrigue as Irvin was able to go four-seamers up at 95/96, sinkers armside at 95, and curves gloveside. He needs to squeeze everything out of his arsenal to be worthwhile, though.

Michael Soroka – With Winans taking Chirinos’ spot, Soroka is still waiting for his chance.

Noah Syndergaard – I can’t believe he earned any four-seamer whiffs against the Blue Jays and have little faith in what he brings to the table.

Alek Manoah – He’s been demoted to Triple-A. Oooof.

Garrett Whitlock – He’s back (and throwing 96!) but it’s out of the pen and we likely don’t see him leave it. Also, that velocity is probably because he was able to air it out.

Alex Cobb – His splitter has returned whiffs just once since returning from the IL on June 30th. Once.

MacKenzie Gore – Since June 3rd, Gore has a 5.64 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, and 24% strikeout rate. You can’t trust the man.

Kyle Muller – He may return to the Athletics and we need to see something legit for him to get picked up.

Nick Martinez – With the return of Michael Wachait looks like Martinez is getting the boot. IT’S NOT FAIR Y’ALL.

Ryan Yarbrough – Now that Clayton Kershaw has returned, the Dodgers no longer need the Fratty PirateAND YOU CAN’T STEAL RAGANS’ ROTATION SPOT.

Josiah Gray – He had success executing the Canibal McSanchez and then it went away as we can’t trust his command. You’re better off not taking the chance.

Ross StriplingI don’t think he’s doing enough and the Giants are weird with their pitchers. Too much of a headache

Matt Manning – He’s not at 95 mph – he’s at 92.5 mph. Ouch.

Edward Cabrera – Demoted as he’s struggling to find his command. Maybe the blister is to fault a bit, but this was an innate problem for Cabrera for a while.

Emmet SheehanDemoted by the Dodgers. Hopefully he’ll return in the future with an improved secondary core.

Joan Adon – He’s a deep streaming option and not a guy to chase in 12-teamers. Sadly the fastball/breaker combo isn’t all that great.

Tyler Wells – A bit shocking to see the demotion to the minors, though Wells is sure to return at some point before the season ends. Likely not worth the stash til then, but he’s a grab the moment he returns.

Touki Toussaint – Yes, he’s pitching again. If that curveball is actually fantastic, maybe there’s a chance.

Reese Olson – There is hope over time for Olson with a strong slider and a potential plus changeup. He had a great start last time out and yet, I don’t buy it.

Ken Waldichuk – I’m curious to see how he develops the rest of the year as there is something there with a possible BSB once he refines his secondaries.

Alex Faedo – I won’t rule out the shot at his slider working out, but there’s too low of a floor here, especially considering the slider did appear and it still wasn’t enough.

Luis Severino – Sigh. You can’t roster Severino anymore. Something is legit wrong as his pitches aren’t fooling anyone and I’m not exactly sure why. Hopefully he finds the tweak but you shouldn’t stash him until then. It might not come soon, if at all this season.

David Peterson – With Scherzer gone, Peterson returned to the rotation after working out of the pen across the last two weeks. I’m not seeing enough growth to consider him and would wait for something major to appear before rostering him.

Tylor Megill – Megill is back in the rotation with Scherzer and Verlander dealt at the deadline and sadly I’m not seeing much from his slider and changeup to encourage a spot on The List.

Ryan Weathers – He’s with the Marlins now and I don’t have much faith this will work out.

Xzavion Curry – There’s no way he’s going to 90%+ strikes on his slider again and even then, it was five decent (not elite) innings. He’s generally much more chaotic.

Sean Manaea – He’s had flashes of success as a follower across four frames or so and it’s just not worthwhile in my book.

Jhony Brito – He’s in the rotation with Domingo Germán unlikely to return this year and Nestor Cortes hitting the IL. I don’t love his low ceiling and think you should chase other options.

Tristan Beck – Came in for four frames in relief for the Giants, but it was under 50 pitches and I wasn’t too impressed with his fastball, cutter, sweeper approach with a few curves. Fun note that shouldn’t be applied to fantasy: He does look like Wheeler (mechanically speaking) without a good fastball.

Alec Marsh – The four-seamer isn’t as good as we want it to be, even if I kinda dig the slider. It’s really hard to suggest rostering him after that atrocious start against the Yankees.

Alex Fast – If you haven’t heard the news, Alex will be stepping away from Pitcher List (with love and for wonderful reasons) on September 1st. In his honor, we’re going to give $40 off PL+ Yearly if you sign up today. This is the largest discount we’ve ever given PL+ yearly. Use code CHACHACHA at checkout.

Michael KopechI don’t see a good reason to roster him at the moment, but if he can string a start or two, then we’re golden.

Drew SmylyHe’s been demoted to the bullpen, though it may be for a limited time. That said, Smyly still has to prove he can be consistent enough with his curveball before we bring him back onto The List.

Patrick Sandoval – It brings me no joy to remove The Irish Panda. He’s too inconsistent with his change and slider failing to take over games.

Rich Hill – He sometimes works in his weird way and let’s just be happy the 43-year-old can still do it from time to time.

Joey Wentz – He had another great outing but it was just a spot start.

Zack Greinke – Greinke does what Greinke does.

Miles Mikolas – What are you chasing? This is not worth it.

Zach Davies On the IL and not worth the stash at all, even if he returns this week.

Dallas Keuchel – No.

Osvaldo Bido You’re looking for something stable and Bido is far from it. There will be brief moments, but he’s not the arm you need.

Ronel Blanco – Blanco may be a 50% slider guy and I wonder if he’ll get more chances in the future. Be aware that he could be a decent spot start if given the chance.

Trevor Rogers – He’s expected back soon(ish. We think?) and I’m excited to see what he does.

Carlos CarrascoThe schedule is blegh and Carrasco doesn’t do enough. For example, eight innings of shutout ball returned just four strikeouts. I’m not interested.

Alex Wood – He’ll hopefully go five productive frames at the risk of destroying your week. No thanks.

Jordan Lyles – He’s come through once when the matchup was good. ONCE.

Trevor Williams – He hasn’t been fantasy relevant for a while.

Ty Blach – He’s actually been arguably the best Rockies pitcher since Gomber stumbled. And still, I just can’t.

Chris FlexenIt’s Coors and far too risky on any night.

Peter Lambert – It’s Coors and far too risky on any night.

Austin Gomber – It’s Coors and far too risky on any night.

Kyle Freeland – It’s Coors and far too risky on any night.

Slade Cecconi – He is far from looking like a reliable starter for fantasy teams.

Adam Wainwright – You know better than this. The Cardinals are letting him start as he’s currently at 198 Wins and hoping to seal #200 before season’s end.

Andre Jackson – The Pirates seem to be letting him start. Okay.

Quinn Priester – It’s slow sinkers and meh secondaries. Nope.

Jesse Scholtens – He’s gone 12 IP and 3 ER in his last two starts combined and I sadly don’t buy it.

Adrian Houser – Naaaaaaah. It’s ridiculous that this works sometimes.

 

 

SCROLL BACK UP AND READ THE NOTES

 

RankPitcherBadgesChange
1Spencer StriderT1
Aces Gonna Ace
-
2Gerrit Cole
Aces Gonna Ace
-
3Luis Castillo
Aces Gonna Ace
-
4Kevin Gausman
Aces Gonna Ace
-
5Zac Gallen
T2
Aces Gonna Ace
-
6Tyler Glasnow
Aces Gonna Ace
Injury Risk
-
7Zack Wheeler
Aces Gonna Ace
-
8Pablo López
Aces Gonna Ace
+2
9Max Scherzer
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
10Blake Snell
Aces Gonna Ace
-1
11Shohei Ohtani
Aces Gonna Ace
-
12Sandy Alcantara
T3
Ace Potential
+4
13Brandon Woodruff
Ace Potential
-1
14Max Fried
Ace Potential
-1
15Clayton Kershaw
Ace Potential
-1
16Corbin Burnes
Ace Potential
+1
17George Kirby
Ace Potential
-2
18Julio Urías
Ace Potential
-
19Freddy Peralta
Ace Potential
+3
20Logan Webb
Ace Potential
-1
21Zach Eflin
T4
Quality Starts
+7
22Justin Verlander
Quality Starts
-2
23Yu Darvish
Quality Starts
-2
24Tarik Skubal
Quality Starts
+6
25Kodai Senga
Quality Starts
+9
26Aaron Nola
Quality Starts
-3
27Kenta Maeda
Quality Starts
+2
28Kyle Bradish
Quality Starts
+8
29Logan Gilbert
Quality Starts
-5
30James Paxton
Quality Starts
-5
31Bryce Miller
Quality Starts
+1
32Yusei Kikuchi
T5
Quality Starts
+16
33Grayson Rodriguez
Ace Potential
+12
34Sonny Gray
Quality Starts
-1
35Eury Pérez
Ace Potential
+11
36Jesús Luzardo
Ace Potential
-9
37Justin Steele
Quality Starts
-
38Andrew Abbott
Ace Potential
+3
39Merrill Kelly
Quality Starts
-4
40Lance Lynn
Ace Potential
+2
41Bobby Miller
Ace Potential
+3
42Framber Valdez
T6
Cherry Bomb
-16
43Tanner Bibee
Cherry Bomb
+4
44Bailey Ober
Cherry Bomb
-13
45Chris Sale
Injury Risk
Cherry Bomb
-5
46Chris Bassitt
Quality Starts
-8
47José Berríos
Quality Starts
-8
48Eduardo Rodriguez
Quality Starts
+5
49Jordan Montgomery
Quality Starts
+2
50Gavin Williams
T7
Cherry Bomb
-7
51Carlos Rodón
Injury Risk
Cherry Bomb
+UR
52Lucas Giolito
Cherry Bomb
-3
53Cole Ragans
Cherry Bomb
+4
54Hunter Greene
Cherry Bomb
+UR
55Bryan Woo
Cherry Bomb
+UR
56Dylan Cease
Cherry Bomb
-6
57Charlie Morton
Cherry Bomb
+14
58Jon Gray
Cherry Bomb
+4
59Brayan Bello
T8
Toby
-4
60Kyle Hendricks
Toby
+9
61José Urquidy
Toby
+4
62Michael Wacha
Injury Risk
Toby
+21
63Seth Lugo
Toby
+1
64J.P. France
Toby
+21
65Brady Singer
T9
Cherry Bomb
-6
66Hunter Brown
Cherry Bomb
-8
67Jack Flaherty
Cherry Bomb
-13
68Mitch Keller
Cherry Bomb
+6
69Cristopher Sánchez
Toby
-1
70Logan Allen
Toby
+17
71Reid Detmers
Cherry Bomb
+7
72Cristian Javier
Cherry Bomb
-12
73Dean Kremer
T10
Toby
-3
74Aaron Civale
Toby
+6
75Hyun Jin Ryu
Toby
+4
76Clarke Schmidt
Toby
+5
77Dane Dunning
Toby
-14
78Allan Winans
Toby
+UR
79Michael Lorenzen
Toby
-23
80Zack Littell
Toby
+10
81Graham Ashcraft
Toby
-5
82Braxton Garrett
Toby
+UR
83Dakota Hudson
Toby
+UR
84Chase Silseth
Toby
-12
85Wade Miley
T11
Streaming Option
-3
86Bryce Elder
Streaming Option
+9
87Javier Assad
Streaming Option
+13
88Mike Clevinger
Streaming Option
+UR
89
Streaming Option
-16
90Taijuan Walker
Streaming Option
+UR
91José Quintana
Streaming Option
-39
92Brandon Pfaadt
Streaming Option
+UR
93Brandon Williamson
Streaming Option
-18
94Cole Irvin
Streaming Option
-3
95Zack Thompson
Streaming Option
-2
96Jameson Taillon
Streaming Option
-
97Paul Blackburn
Streaming Option
+UR
98Kyle Gibson
Streaming Option
-21
99Andrew Heaney
Streaming Option
-11
100Kyle Harrison
Streaming Option
+UR

Labels Legend

Aces Gonna Ace
Ace Potential
Injury Risk
Strikeout Upside
Low IPS
Quality Starts
Playing Time Question
Cherry Bomb
Toby
Ratio Focused
Streaming Option
Stash Option

 

Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns 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.

3 responses to “The List 8/21: Top 100 Starting Pitchers – Week 21 Fantasy Baseball 2023”

  1. martin mcgrath says:

    https://www.mlb.com/news/brandon-pfaadt-s-new-approach

    wondering if you are taking this into consideration, a change of footing on the mound?

    madison

  2. Thatcher Riggin says:

    Daily reader, first time caller.

    Can you drop the (team name) on ’em? Helps us keep track of all the Sears’s…

    And all the J.P.ees

    Martinezesez

  3. Greg says:

    Skubal for Garrett?

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