1. Clayton Kershaw
  2. Roy Halladay
  3. Cliff Lee
  4. Justin Verlander
  5. Felix Hernandez
  6. David Price
  7. Tim Lincecum
  8. Zack Greinke
  9. Matt Moore
  10. Cole Hamels
  11. CJ Wilson
  12. Yovani Gallardo
  13. Jon Lester
  14. Madison Bumgarner
  15. Matt Cain
  16. Ian Kennedy
  17. Jered Weaver
  18. Dan Haren
  19. CC Sabathia
  20. Cory Luebke
  21. Yu Darvish
  22. Mat Latos
  23. James Shields
  24. Josh Johnson
  25. Brandon Beachy
  26. Gio Gonzalez
  27. Steven Strasburg (innings cap of 160-170 IP)
  28. Dan Hudson
  29. Matt Garza
  30. Jordan Zimmermann
  31. Adam Wainwright (innings cap of 170 IP?)
  32. Michael Pineda
  33. Shaun Marcum
  34. Josh Beckett
  35. Jaime Garcia
  36. Chris Sale
  37. Doug Fister
  38. Ricky Romero
  39. Anibal Sanchez
  40. Tommy Hanson
  41. Johnny Cueto
  42. Max Scherzer
  43. Brandon Morrow
  44. Derek Holland
  45. John Danks
  46. Vance Worley
  47. Bud Norris
  48. Wandy Rodriguez
  49. Neftali Feliz (innings cap of around 160 innings)
  50. Brandon McCarthy
  51. Colby Lewis
  52. Gavin Floyd
  53. Francisco Liriano
  54. Juan Nicasio
  55. Mark Buehrle
  56. Hiroki Kuroda
  57. Justin Masterson
  58. RA Dickey
  59. Jonathon Niese
  60. Mike Minor
  61. Clay Buchholz
  62. Ted Lilly (out for start of the season)
  63. Jeremy Hellickson
  64. Ubaldo Jimenez
  65. Tim Hudson (out until May)
  66. Ervin Santana
  67. Jhoulys Chacin
  68. Ryan Dempster
  69. Erik Bedard
  70. Scott Baker
  71. Trevor Bauer
  72. Henderson Alvarez
  73. Tim Stauffer
  74. Chris Carpenter (out indefinitely)
  75. Jeff Niemann
  76. Edwin Jackson
  77. Drew Pomeranz
  78. Jake Peavy
  79. Brian Matusz
  80. Mike Leake
  81. Chad Billingsley
  82. Edinson Volquez
  83. Daniel Bard
  84. Drew Smyly
  85. Ryan Vogelsong
  86. Jeff Samardzija
  87. Aroldis Chapman
  88. James McDonald
  89. Trevor Cahill
  90. Jake Arrieta
  91. Philip Humber
  92. Matt Harrison
  93. Tom Milone
  94. Jonathan Sanchez
  95. Jair Jurrjens
  96. Carlos Zambrano
  97. Hector Noesi
  98. Ivan Nova
  99. Josh Tomlin
    100.Josh Collmenter

= Changed Teams
= Injury/Innings Cap Risk
= Reliever Converted to Starter
= Rookie
= Japanese Import

Using These Rankings: Don’t use these rankings literally; meaning, just because Cueto is ranked #41 and Scherzer is ranked #42, don’t assume it’s always best to take Cueto over Scherzer.  Your individual fantasy team will dictate who the best starter is for your team.  If your team is low in strikeouts and has good ERA/WHIP ratios, then Scherzer has much more value to your team at that time than Cueto does.  If you feel your team needs Wins more than Strikeouts, you might take #19 Sabathia over #12 Gallardo. There are tiers of separation between groups of starters, and there are different types of starters within each tier.. for example, there are lower-Strikeout but good ERA pitchers like Buehrle and Dickey in the same tier as higher-Strikeout but worse ERA pitchers like Masterson and Kuroda.  Some pitchers carry additional risks like being more susceptible to injury (like Bedard) or have an innings cap for 2012 (like Strasburg), and some have higher upside than others (such as Morrow).  This is merely an overarching look at the Top 100 SPs for 2012 based on the combination of their projected stats, health, team they play for, upside, and risk.  There’s a table below that breaks down the top starters into tiers and allows you to look at projected stats/team/health/upside/risk for each starter in one place.  The team is given so that you can decide about how many Wins to expect based on that team’s offense and bullpen (for example: NYY starters will be much more likely to get SP Wins than HOU based on their far superior offense and bullpen).  Rankings are fluid and subject to change between now and Opening Day so check back often to see which starters might be moving up or down the list.

*The “Health”, “Upside”, and “Risk” categories are rated on a scale from 1-5, with 5 being high and 1 being low.  So 1 Health = not healthy, 5 Upside = high upside, 3 Risk = medium amount of risk.  “Health” relates to both current health and overall career health, and thus how many innings you should expect (Health rating of 1 means don’t expect more than 100 innings while a rating of 5 means expect 200 or more).  “Upside” relates to that player’s upside comparative to his projected stats, not upside overall.  “Risk” relates to skills risk, so likelihood that the player underachieves his projected stats and by how much (so a rating of 5 means that player has a decent chance to drastically underachieve his projected stats) – note risk does not encompass health risk – that is obviously covered in the “Health” category.  The converted relievers (Sale, Bard, and Feliz) and rookies (other than Matt Moore) do not have projections because their transitions to starting in the majors for a full season will be very volatile and projections are pretty pointless – all that you need to know is ABOUT where to value them… then based on your gut, team make-up, etc you can draft them where you feel it’s good value… which should be about where I have them ranked.  I will have an article about the relievers converting to starters later, however.. that will give you some idea of what to expect.


2012 Starting Pitcher Rankings — No Comments

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