Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Decision Time

Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Decision Time

This article is part of our Weekly Pitcher Rankings series.

Scoring is up this month. In April, teams averaged 4.03 runs per game, as opposed to 4.34 so far in May. However, through the same date in May last season, teams averaged 4.57 runs per game. It appears the standard trend of increased offense as the weather warms is transpiring, but the baseline is lower, likely due to the unintended effect of humidors.

The burning question is if MLB will let things play out naturally, or do something to increase the scoring beyond the expected organic effects. If you expect MLB to do something, continuing to liberally stream is the play. However, if you suspect this is MLB's intention, it's time to pick and choose starting pitching with more scrutiny. Personally, I'm leaning to the latter, so I'll be more conservative with streaming. Your team, your call.

Please remember I pull the schedule from the Probable Starters grid at posting time. Please feel free to pose rankings questions below, but direct scheduling inquiries to the Probable Starters page.

UPDATED Sunday May 23 1:30 AM ET

For the week of May 23 - May 29

Mixed

RankPitcherTMOPPComments
1Corbin BurnesMIL@SD, @STL 
2Zack WheelerPHI@ATL, @NYMRewarding those who bought the the dip at the end of drafting season
3Gerrit ColeNYYBAL, @TB 
4Luis GarciaHOUCLE, @SEA 
5Max FriedATLPHI, MIA 
6Pablo LopezMIA@TB, @ATLCan he shoulder the load of a

Scoring is up this month. In April, teams averaged 4.03 runs per game, as opposed to 4.34 so far in May. However, through the same date in May last season, teams averaged 4.57 runs per game. It appears the standard trend of increased offense as the weather warms is transpiring, but the baseline is lower, likely due to the unintended effect of humidors.

The burning question is if MLB will let things play out naturally, or do something to increase the scoring beyond the expected organic effects. If you expect MLB to do something, continuing to liberally stream is the play. However, if you suspect this is MLB's intention, it's time to pick and choose starting pitching with more scrutiny. Personally, I'm leaning to the latter, so I'll be more conservative with streaming. Your team, your call.

Please remember I pull the schedule from the Probable Starters grid at posting time. Please feel free to pose rankings questions below, but direct scheduling inquiries to the Probable Starters page.

UPDATED Sunday May 23 1:30 AM ET

For the week of May 23 - May 29

Mixed

RankPitcherTMOPPComments
1Corbin BurnesMIL@SD, @STL 
2Zack WheelerPHI@ATL, @NYMRewarding those who bought the the dip at the end of drafting season
3Gerrit ColeNYYBAL, @TB 
4Luis GarciaHOUCLE, @SEA 
5Max FriedATLPHI, MIA 
6Pablo LopezMIA@TB, @ATLCan he shoulder the load of a full season?
7Shane McClanahanTBMIA, NYY 
8Justin VerlanderHOU@SEAGetting by despite low K%, but for how long?
9Zac GallenARIKC 
10Sonny GrayMINDET, KC 
11Joe MusgroveSDPIT 
12Kevin GausmanTOR@STL 
13Robbie RaySEAOAK 
14Frankie MontasOAKTEX 
15Walker BuehlerLAD@WAS, @ARIOnly 39 K in 46 IP
16Lucas GiolitoCWSBOS 
17Alek ManoahTOR@LAA 
18Sean ManaeaSDPIT 
19Luis SeverinoNYY@TB 
20Miles MikolasSTLTOR, MILPitch to contact guys always a risk, but keeping the ball in the yard
21Logan WebbSFNYMSlider not as effective as last season
22Brandon WoodruffMIL@STL 
23Yu DarvishSDMIL 
24Eric LauerMIL@STLHR an issue, but otherwise solid
25Chris BassittNYM@SF 
26Drew RasmussenTBMIA 
27Carlos CarrascoNYMPHI 
28Logan GilbertSEAHOU 
29Shohei OhtaniLAATOR 
30Nestor Cortes Jr.NYY@TB 
31Adam WainwrightSTLMIL 
32Aaron NolaPHI@ATL24.9% K-BB% is the ninth best among qualifies starters
33Michael KopechCWSCHC 
34Dane DunningTEX@LAA, @OAK 
35Patrick SandovalLAATOR 
36Sandy AlcantaraMIA@ATL 
37James KaprielianOAK@SEA, TEX 
38Nick PivettaBOS@CWS, BALNot a bad pair to keep the roll going
39Jameson TaillonNYY@TB 
40Carlos RodonSF@CIN 
41Jordan MontgomeryNYYBAL 
42Framber ValdezHOUCLE 
43Nathan EovaldiBOSBAL 
44George KirbySEAOAK 
45Paul BlackburnOAK@SEA 
46Zach LogueOAK@SEA, TEX 
47Cristian JavierHOUCLE 
48Marco GonzalesSEAOAK, HOU 
49Jon GrayTEX@OAK 
50Noah SyndergaardLAATEX 
51Yusei KikuchiTOR@LAA 
52Triston McKenzieCLE@HOU, @DET 
53Tyler MahleCINCHC, SF 
54Garrett WhitlockBOSBAL 
55Martin PerezTEX@OAK 
56Dylan CeaseCWSBOS 
57Shane BieberCLE@DET 
58Jose BerriosTOR@STL, @LAA 
59Charlie MortonATLPHI 
60Taijuan WalkerNYMPHI 
61Marcus StromanCHC@CIN 
62Trevor RogersMIA@TB6 HR over last 18.2 IP, buy low candidate
63Bailey OberMINKC 
64Alex CobbSFNYM, @CIN 
65Hyun Jin RyuTOR@LAA 
66Zach EflinPHI@NYM 
67Tarik SkubalDETCLEOnly 2 HR allowed in 44 IP, new approach is working
68Kyle WrightATLPHI 
69Connor OvertonCINSF 
70Jordan HicksSTLTOR, MIL 
71Luis CastilloCINCHC 
72Jose UrquidyHOU@SEA 
73Ian AndersonATLMIA 
74Joe RyanMINKC 
75Cal QuantrillCLE@HOU 
76Zach PlesacCLE@HOU, @DET 
77Clarke SchmidtNYYBAL 
78Blake SnellSDMILNeed more than 3.2 IP to track, but curiously threw some change-ups after bagging them late last season
79Adrian HouserMIL@SD, @STL 
80Jakob JunisSFNYM 
81Mix 12 Reliever   
82Reid DetmersLAATEX 
83David PetersonNYM@SF 
84Jeffrey SpringsTBNYY 
85Tony GonsolinLAD@ARI 
86Rich HillBOS@CWS 
87Trevor WilliamsNYMPHI 
88Aaron AshbyMIL@SD 
89Julio UriasLAD@WAS 
90MacKenzie GoreSDPIT 
91Mix 15 Reliever   
92Kyle GibsonPHI@ATL, @NYM 
93Zack GreinkeKC@ARI, @MIN 
94Wade MileyCHC@CWS 
95Tyler AndersonLAD@WAS, @ARI 
96Tyler WellsBAL@NYY 
97Tucker DavidsonATLPHI, MIA 
98Dakota HudsonSTLMIL 
99Taylor HearnTEX@OAK 
100Michael WachaBOS@CWS 
101Kyle HendricksCHC@CIN 
102JT BrubakerPITCOL, @SD 
103Merrill KellyARILAD 
104Jose QuintanaPIT@SD 
105Dylan BundyMINDET 
106Cole IrvinOAKTEX 
107Chris ArcherMINDET, KC 
108Michael LorenzenLAATOR 
109Graham AshcraftCINSF 
110Johnny CuetoCWSCHC 
111Ryan YarbroughTBNYY 
112Chad KuhlCOL@PIT, @WAS 
113Nick MartinezSDMIL 
114Roansy ContrerasPITCOL 
115Drew SmylyCHC@CIN, @CWS 
116Ranger SuarezPHI@ATL 
117Chris FlexenSEAHOU 
118Corey KluberTBNYY 
119Madison BumgarnerARILAD 
120Zach ThompsonPIT@SD 
121Justin SteeleCHC@CIN 
122Brady SingerKC@MIN 
123Alex WoodSF@CIN 
124Brad KellerKC@MIN 
125Hunter GreeneCINCHC 
126Josiah GrayWASLAD, COL 
127German MarquezCOL@WAS 
128Aaron CivaleCLE@DET 
129Alex FaedoDETCLE 
130Elieser HernandezMIA@ATL 
131Chase SilsethLAATOR 
132Bruce ZimmermannBAL@NYY, @BOS 
133Humberto CastellanosARILAD 
134Glenn OttoTEX@LAA 
135Jordan LylesBAL@NYY, @BOS 
136Zach DaviesARIKC, LAD 
137Kyle FreelandCOL@PIT, @WAS 
138Josh WinckowskiBOSBAL 
139Mitch KellerPITCOL 
140Kyle BradishBAL@BOS 
141Jonathan HeasleyKC@ARI 
142Austin GomberCOL@WAS 
143Patrick CorbinWASCOL 
144Beau BrieskeDET@MIN, CLE 
145Dallas KeuchelCWSBOS 
146Thomas SzapuckiNYM@SF 
147Joey WentzDET@MIN 
148Ryan PepiotLAD@ARI 
149Erick FeddeWASLAD 
150Daniel LynchKC@MIN 
151Elvin RodriguezDET@MIN, CLE 
152Vladimir GutierrezCINCHC 
153Joan AdonWASLAD, COL 
154Spenser WatkinsBAL@BOS 
155Aaron SanchezWASCOL 
156Ty BlachCOL@PIT 

American League

RankPitcherTMOPPComment
1Gerrit ColeNYYBAL, @TB 
2Luis GarciaHOUCLE, @SEA 
3Shane McClanahanTBMIA, NYY 
4Justin VerlanderHOU@SEAGetting by despite low K%, but for how long?
5Sonny GrayMINDET, KC 
6Kevin GausmanTOR@STL 
7Robbie RaySEAOAK 
8Frankie MontasOAKTEX 
9Lucas GiolitoCWSBOS 
10Alek ManoahTOR@LAA 
11Luis SeverinoNYY@TB 
12Drew RasmussenTBMIA 
13Logan GilbertSEAHOU 
14Shohei OhtaniLAATOR 
15Nestor Cortes Jr.NYY@TB 
16Michael KopechCWSCHC 
17Dane DunningTEX@LAA, @OAK 
18Patrick SandovalLAATOR 
19James KaprielianOAK@SEA, TEX 
20Nick PivettaBOS@CWS, BALNot a bad pair to keep the roll going
21Jameson TaillonNYY@TB 
22Jordan MontgomeryNYYBAL 
23Framber ValdezHOUCLE 
24Nathan EovaldiBOSBAL 
25George KirbySEAOAK 
26Paul BlackburnOAK@SEA 
27Zach LogueOAK@SEA, TEX 
28Cristian JavierHOUCLE 
29Marco GonzalesSEAOAK, HOU 
30Jon GrayTEX@OAK 
31Noah SyndergaardLAATEX 
32Yusei KikuchiTOR@LAA 
33Triston McKenzieCLE@HOU, @DET 
34Garrett WhitlockBOSBAL 
35Martin PerezTEX@OAK 
36Dylan CeaseCWSBOS 
37Shane BieberCLE@DET 
38Jose BerriosTOR@STL, @LAA 
39Bailey OberMINKC 
40Hyun Jin RyuTOR@LAA 
41Tarik SkubalDETCLEOnly 2 HR allowed in 44 IP, new approach is working
42Jose UrquidyHOU@SEA 
43Joe RyanMINKC 
44Cal QuantrillCLE@HOU 
45Zach PlesacCLE@HOU, @DET 
46Clarke SchmidtNYYBAL 
47Reid DetmersLAATEX 
48Jeffrey SpringsTBNYY 
49Rich HillBOS@CWS 
50Zack GreinkeKC@ARI, @MIN 
51Tyler WellsBAL@NYY 
52Taylor HearnTEX@OAK 
53Michael WachaBOS@CWS 
54Dylan BundyMINDET 
55Cole IrvinOAKTEX 
56Chris ArcherMINDET, KC 
57Michael LorenzenLAATOR 
58Johnny CuetoCWSCHC 
59Ryan YarbroughTBNYY 
60Chris FlexenSEAHOU 
61Corey KluberTBNYY 
62AL Reliever   
63Brady SingerKC@MIN 
64Brad KellerKC@MIN 
65Aaron CivaleCLE@DET 
66Alex FaedoDETCLE 
67Chase SilsethLAATOR 
68Bruce ZimmermannBAL@NYY, @BOS 
69Glenn OttoTEX@LAA 
70Jordan LylesBAL@NYY, @BOS 
71Josh WinckowskiBOSBAL 
72Kyle BradishBAL@BOS 
73Jonathan HeasleyKC@ARI 
74Beau BrieskeDET@MIN, CLE 
75Dallas KeuchelCWSBOS 
76Joey WentzDET@MIN 
77Daniel LynchKC@MIN 
78Elvin RodriguezDET@MIN, CLE 
79Spenser WatkinsBAL@BOS 

National League

RankPitcherTMOPPComment
1Corbin BurnesMIL@SD, @STL 
2Zack WheelerPHI@ATL, @NYMRewarding those who bought the the dip at the end of drafting season
3Max FriedATLPHI, MIA 
4Pablo LopezMIA@TB, @ATLCan he shoulder the load of a full season?
5Zac GallenARIKC 
6Joe MusgroveSDPIT 
7Walker BuehlerLAD@WAS, @ARIOnly 39 K in 46 IP
8Sean ManaeaSDPIT 
9Miles MikolasSTLTOR, MILPitch to contact guys always a risk, but keeping the ball in the yard
10Logan WebbSFNYMSlider not as effective as last season
11Brandon WoodruffMIL@STL 
12Yu DarvishSDMIL 
13Eric LauerMIL@STLHR an issue, but otherwise solid
14Chris BassittNYM@SF 
15Carlos CarrascoNYMPHI 
16Adam WainwrightSTLMIL 
17Aaron NolaPHI@ATL24.9% K-BB% is the ninth best among qualifies starters
18Sandy AlcantaraMIA@ATL 
19Carlos RodonSF@CIN 
20Tyler MahleCINCHC, SF 
21Charlie MortonATLPHI 
22Taijuan WalkerNYMPHI 
23Marcus StromanCHC@CIN 
24Trevor RogersMIA@TB6 HR over last 18.2 IP, buy low candidate
25Alex CobbSFNYM, @CIN 
26Zach EflinPHI@NYM 
27Kyle WrightATLPHI 
28Connor OvertonCINSF 
29Jordan HicksSTLTOR, MIL 
30Luis CastilloCINCHC 
31Ian AndersonATLMIA 
32Blake SnellSDMILNeed more than 3.2 IP to track, but curiously threw some change-ups after bagging them late last season
33Adrian HouserMIL@SD, @STL 
34Jakob JunisSFNYM 
35David PetersonNYM@SF 
36Tony GonsolinLAD@ARI 
37Trevor WilliamsNYMPHI 
38Aaron AshbyMIL@SD 
39Julio UriasLAD@WAS 
40MacKenzie GoreSDPIT 
41Kyle GibsonPHI@ATL, @NYM 
42Wade MileyCHC@CWS 
43Tyler AndersonLAD@WAS, @ARI 
44Tucker DavidsonATLPHI, MIA 
45Dakota HudsonSTLMIL 
46Kyle HendricksCHC@CIN 
47JT BrubakerPITCOL, @SD 
48Merrill KellyARILAD 
49Jose QuintanaPIT@SD 
50Graham AshcraftCINSF 
51Chad KuhlCOL@PIT, @WAS 
52Nick MartinezSDMIL 
53Roansy ContrerasPITCOL 
54Drew SmylyCHC@CIN, @CWS 
55Ranger SuarezPHI@ATL 
56Madison BumgarnerARILAD 
57Zach ThompsonPIT@SD 
58Justin SteeleCHC@CIN 
59NL Reliever   
60Alex WoodSF@CIN 
61Hunter GreeneCINCHC 
62Josiah GrayWASLAD, COL 
63German MarquezCOL@WAS 
64Elieser HernandezMIA@ATL 
65Humberto CastellanosARILAD 
66Zach DaviesARIKC, LAD 
67Kyle FreelandCOL@PIT, @WAS 
68Mitch KellerPITCOL 
69Austin GomberCOL@WAS 
70Patrick CorbinWASCOL 
71Thomas SzapuckiNYM@SF 
72Ryan PepiotLAD@ARI 
73Erick FeddeWASLAD 
74Vladimir GutierrezCINCHC 
75Joan AdonWASLAD, COL 
76Aaron SanchezWASCOL 
77Ty BlachCOL@PIT 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Todd Zola
Todd has been writing about fantasy baseball since 1997. He won NL Tout Wars and Mixed LABR in 2016 as well as a multi-time league winner in the National Fantasy Baseball Championship. Todd is now setting his sights even higher: The Rotowire Staff League. Lord Zola, as he's known in the industry, won the 2013 FSWA Fantasy Baseball Article of the Year award and was named the 2017 FSWA Fantasy Baseball Writer of the Year. Todd is a five-time FSWA awards finalist.
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