by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
Earlier today we looked at our Top 20 starting pitcher rankings, talking about how deep the position is this season. As we look at the next 20 names on our rankings that becomes even more abundantly clear:
Tier 4 (continued):
21. Johnny Cueto – Cincinnati Reds
22. Masahiro Tanaka – New York Yankees
23. Matt Harvey – New York Mets
24. Jacob deGrom – New York Mets
25. Sonny Gray – Oakland A’s
26. James Shields – San Diego Padres
27. Garrett Richards – Los Angeles Angels
28. Doug Fister – Washington Nationals
29. Drew Hutchison – Toronto Blue Jays
30. Alex Cobb – Tampa Bay Rays
31. Jake Arrieta – Chicago Cubs
32. Anibal Sanchez – Detroit Tigers
33. Michael Wacha – St. Louis Cardinals
34. Gerrit Cole – Pittsburgh Pirates
35. Wily Peralta – Milwaukee Brewers
36. Lance Lynn – St. Louis Cardinals
37. Derek Holland – Texas Rangers
38. Yordano Ventura – Kansas City Royals
39. Brandon McCarthy – Los Angeles Dodgers
40. John Lackey – St. Louis Cardinals
- Tier 6 actually includes seven more pitchers, further showing the current depth at the position.
- A lot of people feel Johnny Cueto should be ranked significantly higher than this, especially after his elite performance in 2014. However there’s a good chance that his strikeouts regress (8.94 K/9 in ’14, 7.41 for his career as well as a 9.8% SwStr% in ’14) and he benefitted from significant luck (.238 BABIP, 82.5% strand rate). For an in-depth look at Cueto, click here.
- We all know that Masahiro Tanaka and Matt Harvey have the upside of Tier 2 starters, but both carry a bit of risk (Tanaka feels like a ticking time bomb and Harvey is going to be limited after missing 2014 due to Tommy John surgery).
- Both Garrett Richards and Alex Cobb are going to miss the start of the season, but both would’ve likely been in Tier 3 had they been healthy and are only expected to miss a handful of starts. As their price drops their value becomes too alluring to ignore.
- Is there a chance of Drew Hutchison developing into a Top 25 starter? Absolutely, and you can find out why we feel that way be clicking here.
- Early in the offseason we looked at Wily Peralta, who’s 17 W put him on the map but he’s significantly more than that. To find out why he’s one of our favorites click here.
- Derek Holland feels like a forgotten option, doesn’t he? He pitched just 37.0 innings last season due to injury, but don’t forget that he posted a 3.42 ERA and 1.29 WHIP back in ’13 and is going to come at little cost. He’s well worth the gamble. For a more detailed look at him, click here.
Make sure to check out all of our 2015 rankings:
- First Basemen
- Second Basemen
- Third Basemen
- Outfielders: 1-20 | 21-40
- Relief Pitchers
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