Two-Start Pitchers: Week 12 (June 17-23): Tiered Rankings, Sleepers & More (Updated)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Are you trying to get a jump on your competition and snag Week 12s two-start pitchers?  Where does the value lie? Who should we be rolling the dice on? First, let’s take a look at my AL/NL Sleepers for the coming week:

American   League National   League
Tier 1 Justin   Verlander – Detroit Tigers – vs. Bal, vs. BosYu   Darish – Texas Rangers – vs. Oak, at Stl

Max   Scherzer – Detroit Tigers – vs. Bal, vs. Bos

Adam   Wainwright – St. Louis Cardinals – vs. CHC, vs. TexMatt   Harvey – New York Mets – at Atl, at Phi
Tier 2 James   Shields – Kansas City Royals – at Cle, vs. CWS Shelby   Miller – St. Louis Cardinals – vs. CHC, vs. TexMat   Latos – Cincinnati Reds – vs. Pit, at Ari

Matt   Cain – San Francisco Giants – vs. SD, vs. Mia

Jeff   Samardzija – Chicago Cubs – at Stl, vs. Hou

Tier 3 Jason   Vargas – Los Angeles Angels – vs. Sea, vs. PitJose   Quintana – Chicago White Sox – at Hou, at KC
Dan Straily – Oakland Athletics – at Tex, at Sea
Jarrod Parker – Oakland Athletics – at Tex, at Sea


Patrick   Corbin – Arizona Diamondbacks – vs. Mia, vs. CinHyun-Jin   Ryu – Los Angeles Dodgers – at NYY, at SD

Paul   Maholm – Atlanta Braves – vs. NYM, at Mil

Tim   Hudson – Atlanta Braves – vs. NYM, at Mil

Travis   Wood – Chicago Cubs – at Stl, vs. Hou

Mike   Leake – Cincinnati Reds – vs. Pit, at Ari

Tier 4 Dylan   Axelrod – Chicago White Sox – at Min, at KCJordan   Lyles – Houston Astros – vs. Mil, at CHC
Bud Norris – Houston Astros – vs. CWS, at CHC

Josh   Johnson – Toronto Blue Jays – vs. Col, vs. Bal
Phil Hughes – New York Yankees – vs. LAD, vs. TB

Jeremy   Hellickson – Tampa Bay Rays – at Bos, at NYY
Nick Tepesch – Texas Rangers – vs. Oak, at Stl
Jason Hammel – Baltimore Orioles – at Det, at Tor

Felix   Doubront – Boston Red Sox – vs. TB, at Det

Andrew   Cashner – San Diego Padres – at SF, vs. LADBarry   Zito – San Francisco Giants – vs. SD, vs. Mia

Francisco   Liriano – Pittsburgh Pirates – at Cin, at LAA

Dillon   Gee – New York Mets – at Atl, at Phi

Jorge   De La Rosa – Colorado Rockies – at Tor, at Was

Dan   Haren – Washington Nationals – at Phi, vs. Col

Tier 5 Mike   Pelfrey – Minnesota Twins – vs. CWS, at CleAaron   Harang – Seattle Mariners – at LAA, vs. Oak

Jeremy   Bonderman – Seattle Mariners – at LAA, vs. Oak


John   Lannan – Philadelphia Phillies – vs. Was, vs. NYMEdinson   Volquez – San Diego Padres – at SF, vs. LAD

Charlie   Morton – Pittsburgh Pirates – at Cin, at LAA

Jacob   Turner – Miami Marlins – at Ari, at SF
Jeff Francis – Colorado Rockies – at Tor, at Was

Nathan   Eovaldi – Miami Marlins – at Ari, at SF

Alfredo   Figaro – Milwaukee Brewers – at Hou, vs. Atl

Ross   Detwiler – Washington Nationals – at Phi, vs. Col


New Notes:

  • A rain out cost Dylan Axelrod to lose his two-start status for Week 11, though he picks one up in Week 12 instead.  While the Royals have suddenly awoken the past few days, starts against the Twins and Royals appear favorable (at least on paper).  He hasn’t struck out many this season (4.99 K/9), but the upside is there for more (7.99 K/9 in minor leagues, 7.06 in the Majors in ’12).  He’s a gamble, but one that probably is worth taking depending on your situation.
  • Clay Buchholz has been dealing with a neck issue and, according to Sean McAdams (via Twitter) “Buchholz scratched from Sunday bullpen, ruled out of Tuesday start.”  Not only is he no longer a two-start option, but fantasy owners probably want to find an alternative all together for the coming week.  Felix Doubront will step into his spot, though the matchups make him an extremely risky proposition.
  • We can put names like Dan Haren, Jeremy Hellickson and Josh Johnson all in the same classification.  We know the potential and the talent, but with the way they’ve pitched this season it is hard to depend on them.  They are viable, depending on your options, but you do so at your own risk at this point.
  • While both Aaron Harang and Jeremy Bonderman have looked good recently, does anyone really trust him?

Previous Notes:

  • With his rotation spot on the line Dillon Gee has responded with back-to-back strong outings (2 ER over 14.1 IP with 19 K) against two good teams (Yankees & Nationals).  He is far from a guarantee, but with the way he’s been pitching he at least needs to be on our radars.  That said, monitor the news closely because one misstep could lead to him being replaced by Zack Wheeler.
  • Francisco Liriano has seemingly turned back the clock in 2013.  Maybe the move to the NL has been the big difference, but he has two difficult road matchups and has been routinely hit hard (25.8% line drive rate).  Don’t consider him a must use option in any format.
  • You would think Ian Kennedy would be rated much higher, but his struggles go beyond a recent 4.0 IP, 10 ER performance.  He’s allowed at least 4 ER six times in twelve starts this season.  Until he proves that he can produce consistently he is going to be a borderline option.
  • It has been a remarkable bounce back campaign for Jon Lester, but that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t carry significant risk with him.  For his career he has struggled against both Tampa Bay (4.07 ERA, though he has been great against them this season) and Detroit (4.78).  He has to be in your lineup, but that doesn’t mean he’s a lock to produce.
  • Pitching for the Yankees isn’t quite what it used to be and Phil Hughes has watched balls fly over the fences when pitching at home (7 HR in 29.0 IP).  With two home starts against offenses that can swing the bats, he’s a risky proposition.
  • Jordan Lyles has allowed 3 ER or less in seven of his eight starts (including 2 ER or less in each of his past five).  He may just be the pitcher that he currently is overall (4.03 ERA, 1.41 WHIP), but with a pair of matchups that don’t completely frighten you it makes him a viable option.


  1. Tyler says:

    I’ve got an open slot for a starting pitcher to pick up and I’m torn at who to grab. On one hand there are a couple struggling veterans like Dickey, Hudson, Garza, and Gallardo available but on the other hand there are the young guns who look like a better bet like Strailey, Kluber, and Parker. Who would you go for?

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      Are we talking about for just this week or long-term? I have become a huge Kluber fan and would recommend picking him up in any league.

      With those types of other options out there, I would ride te hot hand and then move on. That means Kluber or Gallardo for me.

  2. chris says:

    I’d pick up Garza. He was superb last night and I wouldn’t be surprised if he ends up on a contender at the end of the year (Boston? Pittsburgh? Texas?) to help with rotation depth.

    Gallardo is enticing, but he just doesn’t seem to want to be on that team anymore. Just my observation.

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