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Weekly Pitcher Rankings: A Giant on the Mound

David Regan

David Regan is a six-time Fantasy Sports Writers Association award winner, including the 2015 Baseball Article of the Year.

For the week 7/19 – 7/25

Disclaimer: Rankings are based on information through Friday evening. We will update this piece with comments at the bottom of the article as new information becomes available but recommend keeping up to date with the latest player news.

Always appreciate comments on the rankings, and I expect some disagreement. I'd love to explain the rankings in more detail if you have specific questions, and if there's something in particular that you disagree with, feel free to comment below with your reasoning.


Start 'Em

1.Tim Lincecum - @LAD, @ARI
2.Ubaldo Jimenez - @FLA, @PHI
3.Chris Carpenter - PHI, @CHC
4.Clayton Kershaw - SF, NYM
5.Josh Johnson - COL
6.Roy Halladay - COL
7.Adam Wainwright - PHI
8.Kris Medlen - SD, @FLA
9.Stephen Strasburg - @CIN
10.Johnny Cueto - WAS, @HOU
11.Ryan Dempster - HOU
12.Yovani Gallardo - @PIT, WAS
13.Roy Oswalt - CIN
14.Dan Haren - NYM
15.Madison Bumgarner - @LAD, @ARI
16.Johan Santana - @LAD
17.Tommy Hanson - SD
18.Tim Hudson - @FLA
19.Anibal Sanchez - COL, ATL
20.Matt Cain - @ARI
21.Jair Jurrjens - SD
22.Cole Hamels - @STL
23.Ricky Nolasco - COL
24.Chad Billingsley - SF
25.Ian Kennedy - NYM, SF
26.R.A. Dickey - @ARI, @LAD
27.Ted Lilly - HOU
28.Bronson Arroyo - WAS
29.Wandy Rodriguez - @CHC, CIN
30.Mike Leake - @HOU
31.Brett Myers - @CHC
32.Jonathan Sanchez - @ARI
33.Edinson Volquez - WAS
34.Hiroki Kuroda - NYM
35.Jaime Garcia - PHI
36.Jon Niese - @ARI
37.Barry Zito - @LAD
38.Travis Wood - WAS, @HOU
39.Hisanori Takahashi - @ARI, @LAD
40.Clayton Richard - @ATL
41.Tom Gorzelanny - STL
42.Derek Lowe - @FLA


43.Bud Norris - CIN
44.Mike Pelfrey - @LAD
45.Vicente Padilla - NYM
46.Wade LeBlanc - @ATL, @PIT
47.Carlos Silva - HOU, STL (STL worries me)
48.Randy Wells - STL
49.David Bush - @PIT
50.Paul Maholm - SD
51.Edwin Jackson - SF
52.Jason Hammel - @FLA
53.Jorge De La Rosa - @FLA
54.Kevin Correia - @PIT
55.Doug Davis - @PIT, WAS
56.Brad Lincoln - MIL, SD
57.Jon Garland - @ATL
58.Manny Parra - WAS
59.Livan Hernandez - @CIN
60.Randy Wolf - @PIT
61.Zach Duke - MIL
62.Rodrigo Lopez - SF
63.James McDonald - SF, NYM
64.Jeff Francis - @FLA, @PHI

Extreme Caution Advised

65.Joe Blanton - @STL
66.Blake Hawksworth - PHI, @CHC
67.Alejandro Sanabia - ATL
68.Nate Robertson - COL, ATL
69.Kyle Kendrick - @STL, COL
70.Jamie Moyer - @STL, COL
71.Craig Stammen - @MIL
72.Luis Atilano - @CIN, @MIL
73.J.D. Martin - @CIN, @MIL
74.Brian Moehler - @CHC
75.Jeffrey Karstens - MIL, SD
76.Ross Ohlendorf - MIL
77.Jeff Suppan - @CHC
78.Barry Enright - NYM, SF
79.Aaron Cook - @PHI
80.TBD SD starter - @PIT

Two-Start Starters:

Kris Medlen
Anibal Sanchez
Nate Robertson
R.A. Dickey
Hisanori Takahashi
Kyle Kendrick
Jamie Moyer
Luis Atilano
J.D. Martin
Carlos Silva
Travis Wood – speculation here (see Notes section)
Johnny Cueto – speculation here (see Notes section)
Wandy Rodriguez
Doug Davis
Yovani Gallardo
Jeffrey Karstens
Brad Lincoln
Chris Carpenter
Blake Hawksworth
Ian Kennedy – pretty sure here, but check schedule Sunday
Barry Enright – pretty sure here, but check schedule Sunday
Ubaldo Jimenez
Jeff Francis
Clayton Kershaw
James McDonald – not 100 percent at press-time, but all indications are he’s the guy
Wade LeBlanc – speculation, though he’s the logical choice to start Tuesday
Tim Lincecum
Madison Bumgarner

James McDonald replaces the struggling John Ely in the Dodgers’ rotation this week. He’s worth a look for his strikeout ability, but after impressing last spring, McDonald bombed as a starter before faring better out of the bullpen. … Epic quote from Mat Latos, whom the Padres stashed on the DL in order to limit his innings: “I held my sneeze walking down the [dugout] steps and felt a little pull," Latos said. Nice work. … Sounds safe to write off Brad Penny (shoulder) this year. Big loss for the Cardinals. … R.A. Dickey was a hard-luck loser again on Thursday and now has a 2.67 ERA in 11 starts for the Mets. Nice find by Omar Minaya, though it’s unlikely he knew what he had. … Not that I’m a homer or anything, but Clayton Kershaw got squeezed by the home plate umpire on Thursday and Chris Carpenter did not. Kershaw is already a top-seven NL pitcher, and he’ll be top-five soon enough. … David Bush is pitching well and has a 4.07 ERA, so that should be enough for you go drop him immediately before the inevitable 2-7-7-7-4-1 outing. … With the signing of Dontrelle Willis, the Giants now have insurance in case they decide to trade Tim Lincecum for David DeJesus. All kidding aside, Willis could still resurface as a major league starter if the Giants trade the likes of Jonathan Sanchez, but it’s unlikely. … Edinson Volquez (elbow) may have already made his first start of 2010 by the time you read this. He was reportedly hitting the mid 90s in rehab, so go ahead and add him in all formats. … Felipe Paulino (shoulder) should return this week as well, and as few pitchers throw harder, I’m buying. … Yovani Gallardo (shoulder) is set to return this week and should get two starts. I’m going with Chris Narveson getting the boot and Manny Parra sticking in the rotation. … My NL Cy Young ballot: 1. Josh Johnson, 2. Adam Wainwright, 3. Ubaldo Jimenez. … Randy Wells has turned things around after it was looking like his rotation spot was in jeopardy. Wells has a 2.18 ERA in his last three starts. … Guessing Randy Wolf missed Dodger Stadium. He’s scuffled all year for the Brewers and has a mediocre 74:58 K:BB in 116.1 innings. … Bud Norris ranks third in the NL among starters with a 9.8 K/9. Most of you probably weren’t aware, and neither was I. … It will be interesting to see how the Reds slot their rotation with Aaron Harang (back) and Edinson Volquez (elbow) returning. A trade makes a ton of sense, but who goes? … Jair Jurrjens has looked good in his last three starts and appears poised for a strong second half. I like the Braves to make a World Series push this year.


Start 'Em

1.Cliff Lee - LAA
2.Jon Lester - @SEA
3.CC Sabathia - KC
4.David Price - @CLE
5.Felix Hernandez - CHW
6.Brett Cecil - @KC, @DET
7.Justin Verlander - TOR
8.Philip Hughes - LAA
9.Francisco Liriano - CLE
10.Zack Greinke - TOR
11.Jered Weaver - @TEX
12.Ricky Romero - @KC
13.Daisuke Matsuzaka - @OAK, @SEA
14.Trevor Cahill - CHW
15.Javier Vazquez - LAA, KC
16.Clay Buchholz - @OAK
17.Andy Pettitte - KC
18.Matt Garza - @BAL, @CLE
19.James Shields - @BAL
20.Colby Lewis - @DET
21.Shaun Marcum - @DET
22.Jeff Niemann - @CLE
23.Brandon Morrow - @DET
24.Scott Baker - CLE, @BAL
25.Gavin Floyd - @SEA
26.John Danks - @SEA
27.C.J. Wilson - LAA
28.Jeremy Bonderman - TEX, TOR
29.Carl Pavano - @BAL
30.Tommy Hunter - @DET, LAA
31.Max Scherzer - TEX
32.Brian Matusz - MIN
33.John Lackey - @SEA
34.Josh Beckett - @SEA
35.A.J. Burnett - KC
36.Jeremy Guthrie - MIN
37.Mark Buehrle - @OAK
38.Andrew Oliver - TOR
39.Freddy Garcia - @OAK
40.Chris Tillman - TB, MIN


41.Jason Vargas - BOS
42.Ervin Santana - @TEX
43.Wade Davis - @BAL
44.Joel Pineiro - @NYY
45.Ben Sheets - BOS, CHW
46.Dan Hudson - @SEA, @OAK
47.Gio Gonzalez - BOS
48.Scott Feldman - @DET, LAA
49.Jake Arrieta - TB, MIN
50.Jesse Litsch - @KC, @DET
51.Jake Westbrook - @MIN
52.Dallas Braden - BOS
53.Fausto Carmona - @MIN
54.Kevin Slowey - CLE, @BAL
55.Justin Masterson - TB
56.Armando Galarraga - TEX, TOR
57.Nick Blackburn - @BAL
58.Vincent Mazzaro - CHW

Extreme Caution Advised (a.k.a “Avoid the Yankees”)

59.Doug Fister - CHW, BOS
60.Joe Saunders - @TEX
61.Bradley Bergesen - TB
62.Tim Wakefield - @OAK
63.Aaron Laffey - @MIN, TB
64.Kyle Davies - TOR, @NYY
65.Ryan Rowland-Smith – BOS
66.Mitch Talbot - TB
67.Anthony Lerew - TOR, @NYY
68.Brian Bannister - @NYY
69.Bruce Chen - @NYY
70.Scott Kazmir - @NYY, @TEX
71.David Pauley - CHW, BOS

Two-start starters:

Matt Garza
Brett Cecil
Jesse Litsch
Dan Hudson – Rotation lines up for 2 starts, but he could be skipped for one as well.
Aaron Laffey
Armando Galarraga
Jeremy Bonderman
Anthony Lerew
Kyle Davies
Scott Baker
Kevin Slowey
Scott Kazmir
Ben Sheets
David Pauley – Tentative, as Seattle has yet to announce starter for Monday.
Doug Fister
Scott Feldman
Tommy Hunter
Jake Arrieta – O’s have yet to announce starters for Mon/Tues, so this is tentative, but likely.
Chris Tillman – O’s have yet to announce starters for Mon/Tues, so this is tentative, but likely.
Daisuke Matsuzaka
Javier Vazquez

It does not look like Josh Beckett (back) will return this week. With Tim Wakefield getting shelled in his last start, Beckett’s return is clearly needed in Boston. … It’s looking like Brett Anderson (elbow) could return this upcoming weekend, though the A’s could push him back a few days to be safe. … Doug Fister currently sports a 4.1 K/9, so it’s not exactly a huge surprise that he allowed 12 hits in 5.2 innings in his last start. He’s the epitome of hittable. And now the hits are dropping: first nine starts, .235 BABIP (2.03 ERA); last five starts, .337 BABIP (6.75 ERA)… More shoulder soreness for Erik Bedard. So much for his return this year, me thinks. … Kevin Slowey is one of the more disappointing pitchers in the game. This is a pitcher with a career 315:69 K:BB but he’s posted ERAs near 5.00 in each of the last two years including this one. … Tommy Hunter may be the next Doug Fister: 6-0 with a 2.39 ERA. Ride him while he’s hot I guess, but a 5.1 K/9 pitcher starting half his games in Texas is a disaster waiting to happen. … Jeff Niemann’s back is fine, so hold off on the Jeremy Hellickson promotion talk for now. … Derek Holland (shoulder) and Rich Harden (glute) remain way off from returning to the Texas rotation, and I wouldn’t count on much from Harden in particular this year. … Shaun Marcum makes his return this Sunday (7/18) from a shoulder injury. Get him active for next week. … Clay Buchholz (hamstring) returns this week assuming a weekend minor league rehab start goes well. … Had a hard time slotting the Reds’ starters this week. Arroyo and Volquez will go Wed/Thur, and for now I’m going with Johnny Cueto and Travis Wood to get two starts apiece. The thought there is that giving Mike Leake just one start will help keep his innings down, but who knows with Dusty. … My AL Cy Young ballot: 1. Cliff Lee, 2. Jon Lester, 3. Jered Weaver, with apologies to CC Sabathia. … Baltimore’s Zack Britton was promoted to Triple-A over the break after a 2.48 ERA in 87 Double-A. He’s yet another impressive young arm you’ll be seeing in Baltimore soon.


1.Tim Lincecum - @LAD, @ARI
2.Ubaldo Jimenez - @FLA, @PHI
3.Chris Carpenter - PHI, @CHC
4.Clayton Kershaw - SF, NYM
5.Josh Johnson - COL
6.Cliff Lee - LAA
7.Jon Lester - @SEA
8.Roy Halladay - COL
9.Adam Wainwright - PHI
10.CC Sabathia - KC
11.David Price - @CLE
12.Felix Hernandez - CHW
13.Brett Cecil - @KC, @DET
14.Kris Medlen - SD, @FLA
15.Stephen Strasburg - @CIN
16.Johnny Cueto - WAS, @HOU
17.Justin Verlander - TOR
18.Ryan Dempster - HOU
19.Philip Hughes - LAA
20.Francisco Liriano - CLE
21.Yovani Gallardo - @PIT, WAS
22.Zack Greinke - TOR
23.Roy Oswalt - CIN
24.Dan Haren - NYM
25.Madison Bumgarner - @LAD, @ARI
26.Johan Santana - @LAD
27.Tommy Hanson - SD
28.Jered Weaver - @TEX
29.Tim Hudson - @FLA
30.Anibal Sanchez - COL, ATL
31.Matt Cain - @ARI
32.Ricky Romero - @KC
33.Daisuke Matsuzaka - @OAK, @SEA
34.Trevor Cahill - CHW
35.Javier Vazquez - LAA, KC
36.Clay Buchholz - @OAK
37.Andy Pettitte - KC
38.Matt Garza - @BAL, @CLE
39.Jair Jurrjens - SD
40.Cole Hamels - @STL
41.Ricky Nolasco - COL
42.Chad Billingsley - SF
43.James Shields - @BAL
44.Colby Lewis - @DET
45.Ian Kennedy - NYM, SF
46.R.A. Dickey - @ARI, @LAD
47.Ted Lilly - HOU
48.Bronson Arroyo - WAS
49.Wandy Rodriguez - @CHC, CIN
50.Shaun Marcum - @DET
51.Jeff Niemann - @CLE
52.Brandon Morrow - @DET
53.Scott Baker - CLE, @BAL
54.Gavin Floyd - @SEA
55.Mike Leake - @HOU
56.John Danks - @SEA
57.C.J. Wilson - LAA
58.Jeremy Bonderman - TEX, TOR
59.Brett Myers - @CHC
60.Carl Pavano - @BAL
61.Tommy Hunter - @DET, LAA
62.Jonathan Sanchez - @ARI
63.Edinson Volquez - WAS
64.Hiroki Kuroda - NYM
65.Jaime Garcia - PHI
66.Jon Niese - @ARI
67.Barry Zito - @LAD
68.Travis Wood - WAS, @HOU
69.Hisanori Takahashi - @ARI, @LAD
70.Max Scherzer - TEX
71.Brian Matusz - MIN
72.John Lackey - @SEA
73.Josh Beckett - @SEA
74.Clayton Richard - @ATL
75.A.J. Burnett - KC
76.Tom Gorzelanny - STL
77.Jeremy Guthrie - MIN
78.Mark Buehrle - @OAK
79.Derek Lowe - @FLA
80.Bud Norris - CIN
81.Mike Pelfrey - @LAD
82.Andrew Oliver - TOR
83.Freddy Garcia - @OAK
84.Chris Tillman - TB, MIN
85.Vicente Padilla - NYM
86.Wade LeBlanc - @ATL, @PIT
87.Carlos Silva - HOU, STL (STL worries me)
88.Jason Vargas - BOS
89.Ervin Santana - @TEX
90.Wade Davis - @BAL
91.Joel Pineiro - @NYY
92.Ben Sheets - BOS, CHW
93.Randy Wells - STL
94.Dan Hudson - @SEA, @OAK
95.David Bush - @PIT
96.Paul Maholm - SD
97.Edwin Jackson - SF
98.Gio Gonzalez - BOS
99.Scott Feldman - @DET, LAA
100.Jake Arrieta - TB, MIN