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2020 Starting Pitcher Rankings - Fantasy Baseball Dynasty Leagues


Even with the baseball season delayed, many are looking for places to cast their stored up fantasy baseball energy. With no drafts or mocks to do, the Dynasty community becomes the primary source of enjoyment. Your team could be looking to continue their dominance, rebuild, or in a worst-case scenario, stick their hands up in frustration. Regardless of the team's competitive situation, everyone wants to add value to their roster.

Starting pitcher has a wide variety of talent, and everyone will be looking at the same players in the upper tier. This could force the market to share the same valuations and control pricing. Future elite options like Jesus Luzardo and Julio Urias will drive the market as well. However, there will always be players in the middle-to-late range that will have people conflicted. This is where you can find values if you believe in players more than others. Don't forget about the value that veterans can bring to your dynasty strategy.

All preseason long, RotoBaller has you covered with the latest rankings for all fantasy baseball league types. Here we present our dynasty rankings for the second base position, put together by analysts Nicklaus Gaut, Pierre Camus, and Ellis Canady. Check out our analysis of all other positions as well, coming soon!

 

Starting Pitcher Rankings - Dynasty Leagues (March)

In case you missed it, our very own "Big Pick Nick" Mariano was named the #1 overall most accurate industry expert ranker for the 2018 season!

Rank Tier Name Position Pierre Camus Nicklaus Gaut Ellis Canady
1 1 Gerrit Cole SP 16 11 14
2 1 Jacob deGrom SP 15 14 21
3 1 Walker Buehler SP 19 17 19
4 2 Jack Flaherty SP 25 30 38
5 2 Shohei Ohtani DH/SP 39 29 33
6 2 Shane Bieber SP 29 45 36
7 2 Justin Verlander SP 30 36 46
8 2 Blake Snell SP 48 34 40
9 2 Max Scherzer SP 37 38 48
10 2 Luis Castillo SP 38 59 45
11 2 Mike Clevinger SP 51 49 43
12 2 Aaron Nola SP 47 56 52
13 2 Stephen Strasburg SP 53 51 53
14 2 Chris Sale SP 64 42 54
15 3 Chris Paddack SP 60 69 61
16 3 Patrick Corbin SP 66 67 63
17 3 Clayton Kershaw SP 69 64 66
18 3 Lucas Giolito SP 65 71 64
19 3 Noah Syndergaard SP 61 96 55
20 3 Tyler Glasnow SP 96 76 82
21 4 Charlie Morton SP 75 81 99
22 4 Brandon Woodruff SP 77 88 92
23 4 James Paxton SP 94 83 84
24 4 Mike Soroka SP 70 121 73
25 4 Trevor Bauer SP 76 112 77
26 4 Jose Berrios SP 58 147 68
27 4 Zack Greinke SP 95 92 100
28 5 Hyun-Jin Ryu SP 102 86 109
29 5 Yu Darvish SP 125 80 101
30 5 Jesus Luzardo SP 114 110 95
31 5 Zac Gallen SP 97 140 94
32 5 Eduardo Rodriguez SP 90 154 89
33 5 Max Fried SP 93 128 124
34 5 Corey Kluber SP 124 125 115
35 5 Brendan McKay SP 43 196 125
36 5 Carlos Carrasco SP 136 105 136
37 5 Madison Bumgarner SP 104 173 114
38 5 Robbie Ray SP 112 158 128
39 5 Frankie Montas SP/RP 151 116 133
40 5 Dinelson Lamet SP 130 100 175
41 5 Forrest Whitley SP 91 210 108
42 5 Sonny Gray SP 160 138 129
43 5 Zack Wheeler SP 163 142 126
44 5 Sean Manaea SP 137 163 141
45 5 Matthew Boyd SP 141 156 151
46 5 Casey Mize SP 113 203 150
47 6 Mike Minor SP 128 182 162
48 6 MacKenzie Gore SP 154 201 122
49 6 A.J. Puk SP 158 183 138
50 6 David Price SP 129 160 193
51 6 Julio Urias SP/RP 204 149 147
52 6 Nate Pearson SP 148 185 180
53 6 Mitch Keller SP 133 180 205
54 6 Kyle Hendricks SP 202 152 168
55 6 Lance Lynn SP 207 135 190
56 6 Matt Manning SP 157 236 145
57 7 Caleb Smith SP 188 168 188
58 7 German Marquez SP 179 189 177
59 7 Luke Weaver SP 189 170 202
60 7 Dustin May SP 185 213 173
61 7 Lance McCullers Jr. SP 193 197 #N/A
62 7 Masahiro Tanaka SP 187 241 164
63 7 Carlos Martinez SP/RP 176 208 211
64 7 Marcus Stroman SP 206 187 204
65 7 Mike Foltynewicz SP 183 262 166
66 7 Griffin Canning SP 149 248 216
67 7 Michael Kopech SP 190 230 194
68 7 Joey Lucchesi SP 174 206 237
69 7 Sixto Sanchez SP 159 269 191
70 7 Ryan Yarbrough SP 168 227 234
71 7 Jon Gray SP 205 216 217
72 7 Andrew Heaney SP 244 166 229
73 8 Domingo German SP 199 220 225
74 8 Joe Musgrove SP 222 199 233
75 8 Kenta Maeda SP/RP 214 176 277
76 8 Miles Mikolas SP 213 194 262
77 8 Jake Odorizzi SP 209 265 207
78 8 Jose Urquidy SP #N/A 233 228
79 9 Sandy Alcantara SP 186 314 208
80 9 Matthew Liberatore SP 243 #N/A #N/A
81 9 Steven Matz SP 197 292 245
82 9 Alex Reyes SP/RP 239 #N/A 257
83 9 Aaron Civale SP 268 238 #N/A
84 9 Brent Honeywell SP 127 394 252
85 9 Adrian Houser SP #N/A 258 #N/A
86 9 Eric Lauer SP 260 #N/A #N/A
87 9 Jameson Taillon SP 212 285 290
88 10 Jorge Guzman SP 279 #N/A #N/A
89 10 Dallas Keuchel SP 220 319 303
90 10 Cole Hamels SP 221 323 301
91 10 Rick Porcello SP 264 271 310
92 10 Triston McKenzie SP 184 389 275
93 11 Brady Singer SP 283 #N/A #N/A
94 11 Pablo Lopez SP 219 382 248
95 11 Spencer Howard SP #N/A 245 331
96 11 Dylan Cease SP 301 301 279
97 11 Reynaldo Lopez SP 211 397 276
98 11 Dylan Bundy SP 289 255 356
99 11 Kyle Wright SP 156 482 263

 

Tier One

Gerrit Cole didn’t win the Cy Young, but he finished the 2019 season with a 20-5 record, 2.64 FIP, and led the majors in strikeouts (326). He also had a league-leading 34% K-BB. Cole used his success in Houston to launch himself into a dynamite free agency. The Yankees saw the same thing fantasy owners did and paid him a hefty sum. To obtain Cole, you’ll need to sacrifice what feels like more than the Yankees did. If you own him, ring that cowbell.

Jacob deGrom has every right to own the top spot, even though he will play most of 2020 at 32 years of age. He is a workhorse that provides excellent ratios and strikeouts across 200 innings of a regular, non-shortened season. Historically, the Mets have been unable to provide deGrom with a suitable number of wins. His age and win total is no reason to offer a discount to anyone looking to purchase deGrom.

Walker Buehler has youth and elite stuff to be in this tier for quite some time. His arsenal is headlined by a fastball that he throws 60% of the time. It is his slider (18%) and curveball (17.1%) that generate the most swinging strikes. Buehler etched his name in the elite tier in 2019 with a FIP (3.01) that ranked fifth among qualified starters.

 

Tier Two

Bieber has struck gold for some owners, but your perspective will depend on whether you’re buying or selling. Many had concerns prior to 2019 after he lived in the zone 50% of the time in 2018. Bieber cast off any doubters with a 25.5% K-BB that ranked fifth among starters. His 1.30 HR/9 isn’t preferable, but that isn’t going to keep him from the second tier of pitchers. You’ll need to pay a pretty penny to get a premium pitcher who is only 24 years old.

Scherzer led all starters with a 2.45 FIP in 2019. The competitive status of your team defines his value. If you’re rebuilding, Scherzer doesn't have enough time to wait on your squad. You will have to determine the best time to sell. Is it before the season starts or halfway through the season when you can find a team that needs one elite starter to push them towards the championship trophy?

When you win a Cy Young, it’s tough to match that excellence. Few could have expected Snell to have a 2019 riddled with injuries in the form of toe and elbow issues. He was also wholly unlucky with a .343 BABIP, and his performance resulted in a 4.29 ERA (3.32 FIP). Snell’s 2020 season hasn’t started any better with a cortisone injection in his elbow. He is a dominant pitcher when he’s on the mound, but with continued health issues, Snell also has tremendous risk. It might be worth it to see if his owner is shaking in his or her boots, looking to discharge Snell from their roster.

There will always be bumps and bruises with pitchers. Clevinger has had his share of them, but they haven’t stopped him from providing excellent returns. Even with back and ankle injuries in 2019, he matched the previous season’s record (13-4) in only 21 starts. Clevinger utilizes four pitches that each earned a Swinging Strike rate higher than 13.94% (fastball). Even at 30 years of age, Clevinger has plenty of tread left on the tire.

Luis Castillo might want to thank Derek Johnson for some of his 2019 success. He finished with a 15-8 record and a 28.9% strikeout rate. Castillo increased his changeup (32%) usage that generated a 27% whiff rate. He also finished fourth among all qualified pitchers with a 15.9% Swinging Strike rate. Don’t get sidetracked by his 4.02 ERA that was ballooned by a couple of rough outings in the second half. Trust in the 3.70 FIP and be confident that he can repeat. Although, we would like to see the 10% walk rate trimmed down a little bit.

 

Tier Three

Paddack’s rookie debut couldn’t be any more marvelous. The crowd went wild with each start; unfortunately, the frequency of his starts was inconsistent as the season went along to minimize his innings. Paddack still finished with 153 strikeouts in 140.2 innings. He utilized two pitches, a four-seamer and a changeup, to earn a 3.95 FIP and a 0.98 WHIP. Paddack also led all pitchers with 71.3% first-pitch strikes (minimum 140 innings). There is still room for growth in his arsenal. While many are excited at owning a young fireballer, don’t forget to consider the value he possesses in a trade.

Where are all the people concerned about Patrick Corbin’s health? With back-to-back seasons exceeding 200 innings, 238 strikeouts, and a 14.2% Swinging Strike rate, let’s just consider him a reliable starter worthy of more recognition than what he receives.

Clayton Kershaw bounced back in 2019 after a 2018 season that many thought indicated the end of his elite status. He is no longer the pitcher that sat at the top of the SP totem pole. Even with a velocity (90 mph) that has declined for four-straight seasons, Kershaw is still a premium starter.

Giolito’s terrible 2018 left many supporters lost and concluding that he was another over-hyped pitching prospect. His 5.30 ERA in the first 18 innings of 2019 confirmed that as well, despite a 3.91 FIP. Regardless of what anyone tells you, no one anticipated the phoenix. Giolito rose from the ashes to finish the season with a 3.43 FIP and 228 strikeouts in 176.2 innings. The turnaround stems from an increase in both his fastball (55%) and changeup usage (26%). Giolito also brought back the velocity (94.6 mph) and increased his first-pitch strikes (62%). If you believe in his changes, you’re keeping him. If you doubt them, you’ll be maximizing profit.

Syndergaard has had a rollercoaster career for dynasty leaguers. Selling him now would sacrifice an opportunity to gain value. Check your dedication level.

Glasnow shoves it with a two-pitch mix, a 97.6 mph fastball and a curveball. In 60.2 innings, he had a 2.26 FIP, 33% strikeout rate, and a 50.4% ground-ball rate. The primary concern with Glasnow has been his health. If the health or limited arsenal concerns you, it might be time to consider trading him off.

 

Tier Four

Charlie Morton has already stated he will be retiring after the 2020 season. At 36 years old, we have to take him at his word. As such, you have one of two options. Your team is competing; therefore you keep him. Or, your team is rebuilding in which case you need to get as much value as possible for him.

Paxton and Greinke are both on the list to own only if you are competing this year. Greinke is here primarily due to his age, and Paxton, who is only 31 years old, slots in due to his continual health issues. Of course, his upside is still tremendous when he is on the field. The optimum situation is to sell after he’s had a streak of consistent health and elite performance.

Soroka put on an impressive display of control in his age-21 season. Don’t get blinded by the 2.68 ERA as his 3.85 xFIP is more telling. Soroka’s 80% Left on Base rate and .280 BABIP were sparkling, a little too much. Even if these regress a bit, he can still sit near a 3.50 FIP. Soroka shouldn’t cost an arm and a leg as most owners want more strikeout upside that a 20% K rate. He also benefits from the Braves giving him continual opportunities for wins. Soroka might still be undervalued.

Everyone expects more from Berrios. Even if he never develops ace-level status, Berrios is still a very good starter. Though he’s lost a tick off his velocity the last three seasons, Berrios came just short of striking out 200 batters for the second-consecutive season. Now is an optimal time to buy as concerns are growing regarding his lack of upside and his second-half struggles of 2019. Let’s be clear, though. While the ERA fell, Berrios’ second-half 3.86 FIP remained the same as his first-half level (3.85). Two hundred strikeouts and a 3.50 annually isn’t out of the realm of possibility. That is a very good dynasty asset.

 

Tier Five

The Darvish resurgence is in full swing. Yes, he’s 33 years old, but it looks like you can get a couple more years of supreme strikeouts.

Luzardo is the next wave of elite starters, but you already knew that. Multiple injuries in 2019 delayed his season until he could get 12 innings in September. If you’re going to make a pitch for him, do it now. Once he wins the Rookie of the Year, his price will be untouchable. His health has to be a consideration since he’s already had Tommy John surgery (2016) and a few other issues on his record. When he’s on the mound, he exudes confidence and excellence with his three plus pitches.

In regards to Max Fried, every fantasy baseball analyst across the internet agrees. He is the darling of the preseason. Fried is the SP3 everyone wants to own. It is not hard to see with 53.6% ground-ball, 63.7% first-pitch strike, and 18% K-BB rates. If the excitement continues to build, this might be the last time you can get him at a reasonable price.

Kluber, Carrasco, and Bumgarner are all trending in the wrong direction. Bumgarner’s move to Arizona isn’t viewed as a positive as he has a 3.68 FIP away from Oracle Park.

Kluber missed a majority of 2019 with a fractured arm as well as an oblique injury. He didn’t perform well in 35 innings. Five-straight seasons exceeding 200 innings might have finally taken its toll as well. The Rangers staff will attempt to work their magic. It’s time to sell.

Carrasco’s return from a severe malady has been impressive and heartwarming. The question now will be whether he returns to the 200-strikeout pitcher of 2017 and 2018. At 33 years of age, that is questionable. All the best, Cookie.

 

Tier Six and Lower

The cover of the David Price book might cause some to shrug their shoulders with indifference when looking at his 4.28 ERA and declining 92 mph velocity. Ongoing injuries, 3.62 FIP, and a move to a favorable ballpark/division should persuade you to dust off this old cowboy for one more cattle drive.

The Dodgers have finally cleared a path to consistent starts for Julio Urias. His stuff is undeniable, and he will be in the elite category soon enough. For this, he carries a hefty dynasty tag with him. It is unfortunate that he dealt with a suspension for domestic violence during the 2019 season.

Nate Pearson brings excitement and an inflated cost for some. Sure he throws 100 mph and is a bulldog on the mound. If you think Pearson stays as a starter, he might be a good buy. If you think he ends up in the bullpen, then the price might be a bit too rich.

There is a bunch of helium surrounding Mitch Keller thanks to his undeserved 7.13 ERA and .475 BABIP. His 28.6% strikeout rate and 3.19 FIP are exactly what we want. However, he is still a speculation play, so if someone is trying to make you pay the “he’s already done it” price, look elsewhere.

Currently, German Marquez has four years left in Colorado. If he ever escapes prior to that, his value will skyrocket. Over the last two seasons, he has a 3.31 ERA and a 25.8% strikeout rate away from Coors.

Struggling or rebuilding teams often need a couple of players to break through to increase value for both fantasy teams and trades. Reynaldo Lopez and Dylan Bundy fall in this category.

Lopez didn't have a great year, but he improved to a 4.18 FIP and a 22.5% strikeout rate in the second half of 2019. The addition of Yasmani Grandal might be enough to improve performance and increase trade value.

Bundy isn't sexy, so you can get him quite easily. He benefits from a move to LA. Not only does he have a better park, but Bundy's 53% Pull and 41% ground-ball rates versus right-handers make the Anthony Rendon addition a valuable resource.

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Turnover exists in all work places and the NFL is no exception. As far as professional sports go, the NFL has more turnover than the rest. Between free agency, trades, and the draft, player situations undergo significant and sometimes unexpected changes. Each year, a new crop of rookies enters the league and aging or underperforming... Read More


The Perfect 10: Drafting a Dream Team in Round 10 and Later

Derrick Jones Jr. in the 2020 Dunk Contest (Sorry, Aaron Gordon). Romanian gymnast Nadia Comăneci during the 1976 Montreal Olympics. Miss Davis working at the Landing Strip in Varsity Blues. Our lives are defined by perfect 10s. Thankfully, we can take this same principle and apply it to our fantasy drafts. After you’ve taken the... Read More


What Will The Rams Offense Look Like in 2020?

Remember last offseason when any person who was ever in the vicinity of the Sean McVay was receiving head coaching gigs? Rumor has it that even his plumber was called in for an interview. I mean, McVay looked like an offensive genius who had his team in the Super Bowl on his second year on... Read More


Nick Mariano's Auction Draft Strategies and Tips (Premium Content)

All other Premium Tools can be accessed on the premium dashboard. Congratulations to you and your leaguemates for electing to play in the vastly superior format that is auction-based fantasy football, where luck of the draw doesn't determine draft position. I'm not here to drone about many basic how-to's, I want to get after winning... Read More


The King's One-Man Mock (Post NFL Draft)

This is my second one-man mock exercise of 2020 and the first after the NFL Draft. I put myself in the draft chairs and minds of every owner in an advance look at the next season. With the return of play in some other sports, we can look ahead with hope to the first few... Read More


Dynasty Tiered Rankings and Analysis (Wide Receiver)

It's never too early for some fantasy football rankings, right? We here at RotoBaller firmly believe that, which is why we've already done rankings for the 2020 season. Standard. PPR. Dynasty. (Click the word "dynasty" to go see our complete dynasty rankings.) But what are rankings without some kind of context by which to understand... Read More


Assessing Dynasty Value in FFPC Startups

This is the time for dynasty leagues to plan rookie drafts and make preparations for another competitive season. But what if you're new to the dynasty world or deciding whether to dip your toe in the pool? First, you should read about Joe Nicely's experience jumping head first into a dynasty league with the sharks... Read More


Updated Dynasty Rookie Rankings: Post-NFL Draft Risers and Fallers

As the calendar begins to lean towards the summer, that tells fantasy owners to ramp up their preparations for the upcoming season. But what is on tap first for many is the rookie draft. We've been through the scouting combine, the NFL Draft has come and gone, and we know where these rookies will be... Read More


2020 IDP Rankings - Top 120 Defensive Players for Fantasy Football

Welcome back RotoBallers! Below you will find our staff's updated 2020 fantasy football rankings (top 120) for IDP formats. For those of you who are not familiar with fantasy football IDP leagues, these are formats where individual defensive players (IDP) are drafted by fantasy managers and accrue points for defensive stats like tackles, sacks, interceptions, etc. Our... Read More


Josh Hayes' 2020 Best Ball Avoids (Premium Content)

All other Premium Tools can be accessed on the premium dashboard. The fantasy football season upon us! For those fantasy players looking to get an edge on their 2020 leagues, best ball formats are an awesome way to get an early look at where players are being drafted in terms of ADP, and which players... Read More


Nick Mariano's 2020 Late-Round Fliers (Premium Content)

All other Premium Tools can be accessed on the premium dashboard. We’re intentionally sidestepping the term “sleeper" because I don’t want to get wrapped up in debates over these guys not being “under the radar” enough. I may still throw it into the SEO field, though...no regrets. Instead, let’s discuss some late-round fliers at running... Read More


Justin Herbert - Fantasy Football Rookie Spotlight

As fantasy football players and NFL fans, every year we get excited about the NFL draft. It is a time of hope where a franchise's luck can change for the better or for the worst. This rings especially true for the teams that decide to select a quarterback. The starting quarterback of an NFL team... Read More