Yesterday we posted #1-20 of our starting pitcher rankings (click here to view). Let’s keep things rolling with the next 20:
21. C.J. Wilson – Los Angeles Angels
22. Ian Kennedy – Arizona Diamondbacks
23. James Shields – Tampa Bay Rays
24. Daniel Hudson – Arizona Diamondbacks
25. Josh Beckett – Boston Red Sox
26. Adam Wainwright – St. Louis Cardinals
27. Michael Pineda – New York Yankees
28. Shaun Marcum – Milwaukee Brewers
29. Josh Johnson – Miami Marlins
30. Matt Garza – Chicago Cubs
31. Brandon Beachy – Atlanta Braves
32. Matt Moore – Tampa Bay Rays
33. Max Scherzer – Detroit Tigers
34. Johnny Cueto – Cincinnati Reds
35. Jordan Zimmermann – Washington Nationals
36. Colby Lewis – Texas Rangers
37. Ubaldo Jimenez – Cleveland Indians
38. Brandon Morrow – Toronto Blue Jays
39. Justin Masterson – Cleveland Indians
40. Anibal Sanchez – Miami Marlins
- Obviously there is going to be some concerns regarding Adam Wainwright after he missed the entire 2011 campaign. However, he is doing everything in his power to make us forget about that thus far this spring. Over 14.0 innings all he has done is post a 0.00 ERA and 0.71 WHIP. That’s not to say that it’s been perfect, with 9 K vs. 5 BB. He has been better lately, especially with 5 K in 5.0 IP in his last start and 2 BB in 9.0 IP in his last two. I would prefer him as a top end SP3, just because there is still risk, but so far so good.
- Will this be the year that Max Scherzer finally lives up to the hype? Thus far he is third in the league in strikeouts with 21, trailing only Roy Halladay (24) and Francisco Liriano (23), which helps the believers. However, his strikeout rate has been on the decline overall, and things in the AL are not going to be getting any easier. I would have more faith in him pitching in the NL, but time will tell. He is high risk, high reward, though with strikeout potential and improved control (2.58 BB/9 in ’11), he’s probably worth rolling the dice on as a SP4 type.
- As I have dubbed him, “The Masterful” Justin Masterson is one of my favorite mid-rotation fantasy options. He brings good control (2.71 BB/9 in ’11) and a good groundball rate (56.1% for his career) to the table. Now, if he can improve his strikeout rate (and with a 7.46 K/9 in the minor leagues it is possible) he can take a major step forward. He has a ton of upside and is a pitcher that should be targeted in all formats.
- We all know the unpredictability that Josh Beckett brings to the table. He tends to trade off good and bad years, so if the trend holds true it doesn’t mean good things for fantasy owners (considering his 2.89 ERA and 1.03 WHIP from a year ago). A lot of the poor years have had to do with luck, however, as he is always going to bring good control and strikeout ability to the table. That makes him well worth owning in all formats. For my 2012 projection for him, click here.
- I know there have been concerns of Michael Pineda this spring, but he has picked things up in recent outings (9 K in 8.0 IP). I wouldn’t shy away from him at this point.
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Make sure to check out all of our 2012 rankings: