Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Strasburg's Quiet Excellence

Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Strasburg's Quiet Excellence

This article is part of our Weekly Pitcher Rankings series.

As always, remember that rotations are subject to change, so if you see something that isn't correct, assume that it was a change that has occurred since this was written and feel free to politely bring it up in the comments, and I'll let you know where the new arm slots.

For the week Sept. 15-21

AMERICAN LEAGUE

START

1. Corey Kluber - at HOU, at MIN
Note: Had a 2.99 ERA through June and has gotten better with a 1.79 ERA in his last 13 starts
2. Max Scherzer - at MIN, at KC
Note: The season numbers aren't huge against these two teams, but a lot of it is the 10 ER game vs. KC
3. Matt Shoemaker - SEA, TEX
4. Hisashi Iwakuma - at LAA, at HOU
Note: Among the top 5 in ERA and WHIP since 2012 (min. 450 IP)
5. James Shields - CWS, DET
Note: Catching fire just as they need him with a 2.17 ERA in his last eight
6. Felix Hernandez - at LAA
7. David Price - at MIN
Note: Pacing for 275 Ks
8. Chris Sale - at KC
9. Jon Lester - PHI
Note: Hasn't allowed more than 3 ER with OAK
10. Alex Cobb - NYY
11. Collin McHugh - CLE
Note: McHugh has been HUGE down the stretch because he's not only dominating with his results, but he's also picking up wins
12. Phil Hughes - CLE
13. Yordano Ventura - CWS
14. Brandon McCarthy -
As always, remember that rotations are subject to change, so if you see something that isn't correct, assume that it was a change that has occurred since this was written and feel free to politely bring it up in the comments, and I'll let you know where the new arm slots.

For the week Sept. 15-21

AMERICAN LEAGUE

START

1. Corey Kluber - at HOU, at MIN
Note: Had a 2.99 ERA through June and has gotten better with a 1.79 ERA in his last 13 starts
2. Max Scherzer - at MIN, at KC
Note: The season numbers aren't huge against these two teams, but a lot of it is the 10 ER game vs. KC
3. Matt Shoemaker - SEA, TEX
4. Hisashi Iwakuma - at LAA, at HOU
Note: Among the top 5 in ERA and WHIP since 2012 (min. 450 IP)
5. James Shields - CWS, DET
Note: Catching fire just as they need him with a 2.17 ERA in his last eight
6. Felix Hernandez - at LAA
7. David Price - at MIN
Note: Pacing for 275 Ks
8. Chris Sale - at KC
9. Jon Lester - PHI
Note: Hasn't allowed more than 3 ER with OAK
10. Alex Cobb - NYY
11. Collin McHugh - CLE
Note: McHugh has been HUGE down the stretch because he's not only dominating with his results, but he's also picking up wins
12. Phil Hughes - CLE
13. Yordano Ventura - CWS
14. Brandon McCarthy - at TB
15. Jeff Samardzija - TEX, PHI
16. Michael Pineda - at TB, TOR
Note: He's different than the SEA version from '11, but still good
17. Dallas Keuchel - SEA
Note: His Ks have faded as the season wears on (5.5 K/9 since Aug. 1)
18. Sonny Gray - PHI
19. James Paxton - at LAA
20. Derek Holland - at OAK
Note: How many leagues is he winning with his insane performance as a waiver pickup (0.86 ERA, 0.95 WHIP in 21 IP)
21. Marcus Stroman - at NYY
Note: I don't think he approved of the notion that he was wearing down after that August blip (1.59 ERA in his last three)
22. Chris Archer - CWS
23. Jose Quintana - at TB
24. Carlos Carrasco - at HOU
Note: He's allowed 32 H in seven starts since returning to the rotation - 17 to DET, 15 to everyone else
25. Jered Weaver - SEA
Note: Activate HSRB! (Home Start Rating Boost ... 2.69 home ERA)
26. Rick Porcello - at MIN
27. Scott Kazmir - TEX
28. Danny Salazar - at MIN
29. Chris Tillman - BOS
Note: Hasn't allowed more than 3 ER in his last 13 starts (2.24 ERA in 116.7 IP)
30. Kevin Gausman - TOR
Note: Has a 3.26 ERA in his last five starts with 32 Ks and a 4.0 K:BB ratio
31. Shane Greene - TOR
Note: IP shouldn't be a concern as he's at 129 right now after 154.3 last year
32. Jake Odorizzi - NYY, CWS
Note: Wildly inconsistent down the stretch - 5, 0, 2, 3, 8, 0, 0, and 6 ER in his last eight (4.76 ERA)
33. Drew Hutchison - at BAL, at NYY
34. Jason Hammel - TEX
Note: Now four straight good starts and a weak opponent who offers an opportunity to stay hot
35. Wei-Yin Chen - TOR
36. Hector Santiago - TEX
Note: He's been good against TEX all year (3.86 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, and 4.0 K:BB ratio in 23.3 IP)
37. Miguel Gonzalez - BOS
38. Jeremy Hellickson - CWS
39. Justin Verlander - at KC
Note: I'm not sure you can confidently start him if you're chasing ERA/WHIP points; there's still upside, but the risk might be higher
40. R.A. Dickey - at NYY
41. Kyle Lobstein - at KC
Note: He has acquitted himself quite well
42. Jason Vargas - DET
43. Hiroki Kuroda - TOR
44. Bud Norris - BOS
45. Nate Karns - NYY
Note: Brilliant debut in TOR, but was it just being new or something substantial? Avoid the risk if you're protecting ERA/WHIP, but let's roll the dice otherwise ...
46. Brett Oberholtzer - CLE
Note: This is a matchup play as CLE has struggled vs. LHP all year
47. Danny Duffy - CWS?
Note: His status remains up in the air
48. Chris Young - at HOU
Note: Interested to see how he looks Sunday vs. OAK

SIT

49. Trevor Bauer - at MIN
Note: This is a tougher matchup than you might think (MIN has AL's best OPS vs. RHP since the break)
50. Roenis Elias - at LAA, at HOU
Note: Hasn't allowed more than 2 ER in any of his last nine
51. C.J. Wilson - SEA
Note: Walking too many to trust
52. Jeremy Guthrie - DET
53. Scott Feldman - SEA
54. Joe Kelly - at BAL
Note: You can't risk any of these three in BAL
55. J.A. Happ - at BAL
56. Rubby De La Rosa - at BAL
57. Chris Capuano - at TB, TOR
Note: That devolved quickly; he'd shown some skills in his first four starts w/NYY, but then they collapsed and produced a 6.88 in his last four
58. Brad Peacock - CLE, SEA
59. Mark Buehrle - at BAL, at NYY
60. Nick Tepesch -at OAK, at LAA
61. Nick Martinez - at OAK
62. Kyle Gibson - DET
63. Colby Lewis - at LAA
64. Clay Buchholz - at PIT
65. John Danks - at KC
66. Anthony Ranaudo - at PIT
67. Allen Webster - at BAL
68. Tommy Milone - CLE
69. Hector Noesi - at TB
70. T.J. House -at HOU
71. Cory Rasmus - SEA, TEX
72. Scott Carroll - at TB
73. Chris Bassitt - at KC
74. Scott Baker - at LAA
75. Ricky Nolasco - DET
76. Trevor May - CLE
77. Brandon Workman - at PIT

NATIONAL LEAGUE

START

1. Stephen Strasburg - at ATL, at MIA
Note: I know some want to pretend he's some huge disappointment, but he's still having a fantastic fantasy season
2. Clayton Kershaw - at CHC
Note: He really could outperform Stras in just one start
3. Johnny Cueto - at CHC
4. Cole Hamels - at SD
5. Tyson Ross - PHI
Note: Has a 2.01 ERA in his last 13 starts with 89 Ks in 85 IP
6. Madison Bumgarner - at ARI
7. Jordan Zimmermann - at MIA
Note: His 2.77 ERA since the break is impressive enough, but the 62 Ks in 65 IP has transformed his value
8. Julio Teheran - NYM
9. Zack Greinke - at CHC
Note: Quietly having another ace season
10. Lance Lynn - MIL
11. Gerrit Cole - BOS
Note: Skills and stuff have been really sharp since returning
12. Gio Gonzalez - at ATL
Note: Just nine walks in his last six starts (36.7 IP)
13. Andrew Cashner - PHI, SF
Note: Now has a 2.52 ERA since returning
14. Jacob deGrom - MIA, at ATL
15. Tanner Roark - at ATL, at MIA
16. Adam Wainwright - MIL
Note: A big game against a COL team that is horrible on the road doesn't alleviate my concern re: his Ks
17. Alex Wood - WAS
18. Zack Wheeler - at ATL
Note: One of my favorite 2H breakouts has a 2.47 ERA and 64 Ks in 62 IP
19. Jake Arrieta - CIN
20. Mike Fiers - at STL
Note: It's impossible not to wonder how the Stanton HBP will affect Fiers
21. John Lackey - MIL, CIN
22. Ian Kennedy - PHI, SF
Note: Allowed 32 H in last 24 IP, but he does have a .408 BABIP in that span
23. Ervin Santana - WAS, NYM
24. Doug Fister - at MIA
Note: ERA was last above 3.00 on June 15th, since then he has a 2.23 ERA in 92.7 IP
25. Hyun-Jin Ryu - at COL
Note: When Ryu is bad, he's REALLY bad, but he's rarely bad
26. Mat Latos - at CHC
27. Mike Minor - NYM
Note: Has a 2.59 ERA and 3 HR allowed in his last six; 5.42 and 18 allowed in previous 17
28. Francisco Liriano - BOS
29. Wily Peralta - at STL, at PIT
Note: Closed August brutally, but has opened September with two nice ones
30. Yovani Gallardo - at PIT
31. Wade Miley - SF, at COL
Note: Coors hasn't fazed him much with a 3.38 ERA there, albeit in just 24 IP
32. Bartolo Colon - MIA
33. Dillon Gee - MIA
34. Michael Wacha - CIN
Note: As if the pitch counts weren't scary enough, we now have to worry that he isn't really himself just yet
35. Aaron Harang - WAS
36. Jon Niese - at ATL
37. Ryan Vogelsong - at ARI, at SD
Note: Has 19 ER in his last eight starts ... 8 of them came in Coors
38. Yusmeiro Petit - at SD
39. Tim Hudson - at SD
Note: I feel like the perception is that he's collapsed in the 2H but he has a solid 3.62 ERA in 10 starts; that's who Huddy is
40. Jarred Cosart - at NYM, WAS
Note: Allowed 4 ER in his first start w/MIA; has allowed 6 ER in six starts since then
41. Nathan Eovaldi - at NYM, WAS
42. Jorge De La Rosa - LAD
Note: He's markedly better at home
43. Kyle Hendricks - CIN
44. Jeff Locke - MIL
45. Tom Koehler - WAS
Note: Since the break he has a 3.26 ERA in 60.7 IP with a useful 51 Ks as well
46. Jake Peavy - at ARI
47. Kyle Lohse - at STL
Note: I have no idea why he has struggled so frequently of late, but he's still really good when he's on
48. Henderson Alvarez - at NYM
49. Vance Worley - BOS, MIL
Note: His production has unsurprisingly waned, but he's still useful especially since his component numbers have held solid
50. Edinson Volquez - MIL
51. Tyler Matzek - LAD, ARI
Note: The former blue-chip prospect has a 1.75 ERA in his last five starts
52. Mike Leake - at STL
53. A.J. Burnett - at SD, at OAK
Note: Your team's risk tolerance has to be a major concern here; he can be a nice Hail Mary option or a season-killer
54. David Buchanan - at OAK
55. Tsuyoshi Wada - LAD
56. Shelby Miller - CIN
Note: Three straight 7 IP outings with only 2 ER allowed (both in the first of the three) earns him a trip back into the starts

SIT

57. Odrisamer Despaigne - SF
58. Jordan Lyles - ARI
59. Alfredo Simon - at CHC, at STL
60. Dan Haren - at COL, at CHC
61. Vidal Nuno - at COL
Note: I like plenty of what he's done with ARI, but he's tough to trust in Coors
62. Chase Anderson - at COL
63. Trevor Cahill - at COL
64. Franklin Morales - ARI
65. Josh Collmenter - SF
66. David Holmberg - at STL
67. Felix Doubront - LAD
68. Jerome Williams - at SD, at OAK
69. Roberto Hernandez - at COL, at CHC
70. Kyle Kendrick - at SD
71. Travis Wood - LAD
72. Eric Stults - PHI
73. Brad Hand - WAS
74. Randall Delgado - SF
75. Jacob Turner - CIN, LAD
76. Christian Bergman - LAD, ARI

MLB TOP 100

1. Corey Kluber - at HOU, at MIN
Note: Had a 2.99 ERA through June and has gotten better with a 1.79 ERA in his last 13 starts
2. Max Scherzer - at MIN, at KC
Note: The season numbers aren't huge against these two teams, but a lot of it is the 10 ER game vs. KC
3. Stephen Strasburg - at ATL, at MIA
Note: I know some want to pretend he's some huge disappointment, but he's still having a fantastic fantasy season
4. Clayton Kershaw - at CHC
Note: He really could outperform Stras in just one start
5. Matt Shoemaker - SEA, TEX
6. Hisashi Iwakuma - at LAA, at HOU
Note: Among the top 5 in ERA and WHIP since 2012 (min. 450 IP)
7. James Shields - CWS, DET
Note: Catching fire just as they need him with a 2.17 ERA in his last eight
8. Johnny Cueto - at CHC
9. Cole Hamels - at SD
10. Tyson Ross - PHI
Note: Has a 2.01 ERA in his last 13 starts with 89 Ks in 85 IP
11. Madison Bumgarner - at ARI
12. Jordan Zimmermann - at MIA
Note: His 2.77 ERA since the break is impressive enough, but the 62 Ks in 65 IP has transformed his value
13. Felix Hernandez - at LAA
14. David Price - at MIN
Note: Pacing for 275 Ks
15. Chris Sale - at KC
16. Jon Lester - PHI
Note: Hasn't allowed more than 3 ER with OAK
17. Julio Teheran - NYM
18. Zack Greinke - at CHC
Note: Quietly having another ace season
19. Lance Lynn - MIL
20. Alex Cobb - NYY
21. Collin McHugh - CLE
Note: McHugh has been HUGE down the stretch because he's not only dominating with his results, but he's also picking up wins
22. Gerrit Cole - BOS
Note: Skills and stuff have been really sharp since returning
23. Gio Gonzalez - at ATL
Note: Just nine walks in his last six starts (36.7 IP)
24. Andrew Cashner - PHI, SF
Note: Now has a 2.52 ERA since returning
25. Jacob deGrom - MIA, at ATL
26. Tanner Roark - at ATL, at MIA
27. Adam Wainwright - MIL
Note: A big game against a COL team that is horrible on the road doesn't alleviate my concern re: his Ks
28. Alex Wood - WAS
29. Zack Wheeler - at ATL
Note: One of my favorite 2H breakouts has a 2.47 ERA and 64 Ks in 62 IP
30. Jake Arrieta - CIN
31. Mike Fiers - at STL
Note: It's impossible not to wonder how the Stanton HBP will affect Fiers
32. John Lackey - MIL, CIN
33. Ian Kennedy - PHI, SF
Note: Allowed 32 H in last 24 IP, but he does have a .408 BABIP in that span
34. Ervin Santana - WAS, NYM
35. Doug Fister - at MIA
Note: ERA was last above 3.00 on June 15th, since then he has a 2.23 ERA in 92.7 IP
36. Phil Hughes - CLE
37. Yordano Ventura - CWS
38. Brandon McCarthy - at TB
39. Jeff Samardzija - TEX, PHI
40. Michael Pineda - at TB, TOR
Note: He's different than the SEA version from '11, but still good
41. Dallas Keuchel - SEA
Note: His Ks have faded as the season wears on (5.5 K/9 since Aug. 1)
42. Sonny Gray - PHI
43. James Paxton - at LAA
44. Derek Holland - at OAK
Note: How many leagues is he winning with his insane performance as a waiver pickup (0.86 ERA, 0.95 WHIP in 21 IP)
45. Marcus Stroman - at NYY
Note: I don't think he approved of the notion that he was wearing down after that August blip (1.59 ERA in his last three)
46. Chris Archer - CWS
47. Jose Quintana - at TB
48. Carlos Carrasco - at HOU
Note: He's allowed 32 H in seven starts since returning to the rotation - 17 to DET, 15 to everyone else
49. Jered Weaver - SEA
Note: Activate HSRB! (Home Start Rating Boost ... 2.69 home ERA)
50. Rick Porcello - at MIN
51. Scott Kazmir - TEX
52. Danny Salazar - at MIN
53. Chris Tillman - BOS
Note: Hasn't allowed more than 3 ER in his last 13 starts (2.24 ERA in 116.7 IP)
54. Hyun-Jin Ryu - at COL
Note: When Ryu is bad, he's REALLY bad, but he's rarely bad
55. Mat Latos - at CHC
56. Mike Minor - NYM
Note: Has a 2.59 ERA and 3 HR allowed in his last six; 5.42 and 18 allowed in previous 17
57. Francisco Liriano - BOS
58. Wily Peralta - at STL, at PIT
Note: Closed August brutally, but has opened September with two nice ones
59. Kevin Gausman - TOR
Note: Has a 3.26 ERA in his last five starts with 32 Ks and a 4.0 K:BB ratio
60. Shane Greene - TOR
Note: IP shouldn't be a concern as he's at 129 right now after 154.3 last year
61. Jake Odorizzi - NYY, CWS
Note: Wildly inconsistent down the stretch - 5, 0, 2, 3, 8, 0, 0, and 6 ER in his last eight (4.76 ERA)
62. Drew Hutchison - at BAL, at NYY
63. Jason Hammel - TEX
Note: Now four straight good starts and a weak opponent who offers an opportunity to stay hot
64. Wei-Yin Chen - TOR
65. Hector Santiago - TEX
Note: He's been good against TEX all year (3.86 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, and 4.0 K:BB ratio in 23.3 IP)
66. Miguel Gonzalez - BOS
67. Jeremy Hellickson - CWS
68. Justin Verlander - at KC
Note: I'm not sure you can confidently start him if you're chasing ERA/WHIP points; there's still upside, but the risk might be higher
69. Yovani Gallardo - at PIT
70. Wade Miley - SF, at COL
Note: Coors hasn't fazed him much with a 3.38 ERA there, albeit in just 24 IP
71. Bartolo Colon - MIA
72. Dillon Gee - MIA
73. Michael Wacha - CIN
Note: As if the pitch counts weren't scary enough, we now have to worry that he isn't really himself just yet
74. Aaron Harang - WAS
75. Jon Niese - at ATL
76. Ryan Vogelsong - at ARI, at SD
Note: Has 19 ER in his last eight starts ... 8 of them came in Coors
77. Yusmeiro Petit - at SD
78. Tim Hudson - at SD
Note: I feel like the perception is that he's collapsed in the 2H but he has a solid 3.62 ERA in 10 starts; that's who Huddy is
79. Jarred Cosart - at NYM, WAS
Note: Allowed 4 ER in his first start w/MIA; has allowed 6 ER in six starts since then
80. Nathan Eovaldi - at NYM, WAS
81. Jorge De La Rosa - LAD
Note: He's markedly better at home
82. Kyle Hendricks - CIN
83. R.A. Dickey - at NYY
84. Kyle Lobstein - at KC
Note: He has acquitted himself quite well
85. Jason Vargas - DET
86. Hiroki Kuroda - TOR
87. Bud Norris - BOS
88. Nate Karns - NYY
Note: Brilliant debut in TOR, but was it just being new or something substantial? Avoid the risk if you're protecting ERA/WHIP, but let's roll the dice otherwise ...
89. Brett Oberholtzer - CLE
Note: This is a matchup play as CLE has struggled vs. LHP all year
90. Danny Duffy - CWS?
Note: His status remains up in the air
91. Chris Young - at HOU
Note: Interested to see how he looks Sunday vs. OAK
92. Jeff Locke - MIL
93. Tom Koehler - WAS
Note: Since the break he has a 3.26 ERA in 60.7 IP with a useful 51 Ks as well
94. Jake Peavy - at ARI
95. Kyle Lohse - at STL
Note: I have no idea why he has struggled so frequently of late, but he's still really good when he's on
96. Henderson Alvarez - at NYM
97. Vance Worley - BOS, MIL
Note: His production has unsurprisingly waned, but he's still useful especially since his component numbers have held solid
98. Edinson Volquez - MIL
99. Tyler Matzek - LAD, ARI
Note: The former blue-chip prospect has a 1.75 ERA in his last five starts
100. Mike Leake - at STL

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Paul Sporer
Sporer covers pitching for RotoWire. He also writes for Baseball Prospectus and publishes an annual guide on starting pitcher. In his spare time, he roots for the Tigers.
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