2013 Fantasy Baseball: Top 30 Starting Pitchers
Top 30 Starting Pitchers
The time is upon us to research, debate and pray to the baseball gods leading up to your annual fantasy baseball draft. Whether you play for money or just bragging rights amongst friends this Top 30 will be a quick resource as you round into your respective draft.
Fantasy baseball enthusiasts always seem to differ when discussing that special time during your draft when you strike for a Top 30 Pitcher.
Depending on your specific pool's scoring system, the Top 5 picks should be pretty generic across the board but after that you can draft specific to your scoring needs.
There is a plethora of quality arms to go around so don't self-destruct if you don't snag a Justin Verlander or a Clayton Kershaw in the 1st round. There will be plenty of talented laser throwing arms remaining.
Do your homework and look for the breakout candidate in the later rounds. Find the 2013 version of Kris Medlen or Canadian Scott Diamond as that will be key to a successful fantasy summer.
Take a stab at a sexy rookie or sophomore stud who could take the league by storm a la Chris Sale last season. Even a former relief pitcher that will be given a shot in the rotation can be overlooked and fall to the later rounds.
Regardless of when you decide to take a hurler here is the Top 30 ranked by yours truly for your drafting pleasure. Good luck and sit back and enjoy the Toronto Blue Jays ride to the World Series.
#30-C.J Wilson-Los Angeles Angels
C.J Wilson got off to a slow start in his first season with the Angels. Expect Wilson to improve on his 13-10 record 3.83 era this season
#29-Josh Johnson-Toronto Blue Jays
Josh Johnson will embark on his first season in the friendly confines of Canada. If healthy, Johnson will improve on his 2012 totals especially seeing it is a contract year for J.J.
#28-Jon Niese-New York Mets
Jon Niese had a breakout season posting a 13-9 record with an era of 3.40 era in 2012. Niese will be expected to pick up the slack since the departure of R.A. Dickey
Kyle Lohse still remains unsigned and it is anyone's guess where he will end up. Lohse had a stellar season in 2012 posting a 16-3 record with a 2.86 era with the St.Louis Cardinals
#26-Matt Moore-Tampa Bay Rays
Matt Moore was one of the most touted pitching prospects of last season. Moore will look to improve upon his 11-11 record and 3.81 era. Moore has the make-up to be one of the most dominant pitchers in the game.
#25-James Shields-Kansas City Royals
The Royals obtained James Shields in a blockbuster deal involving Wil Myers. Shields will be the ace of the staff and should put up decent numbers with his new mates.
#24-Brandon Morrow-Toronto Blue Jays
Brandon Morrow is my odds on favorite to have a monster season. Morrow led the Blue Jays in wins last season even after being sidelined with a nagging oblique injury. If healthy Morrow will be a force to be reckoned with on the Jays staff, following R.A Dickey in the rotation.
#23-Mat Latos-Cincinnati Reds
Mat Latos went 14-4 with a 3.48 era in his first season with the Cincinnati Reds. Latos will improve on the win total while racking up close to 200 strikeouts in 2013.
#22-Kris Medlen-Atlanta Braves
Kris Medlen took the baseball world by storm going 10-1 with a minuscule era of 1.57 in 12 starts for the Braves. Last season was a small sample size, but huge potential, he is well worth the risk.
#21-Max Scherzer-Detroit Tigers
Max Scherzer lived up to his potential accumulating a 16-7 record with a staggering 231 strikeouts for the surging Detroit Tigers. No reason he cannot repeat last season.
#20-Roy Halladay-Philadelphia Phillies
Roy Halladay had an injury plagued season posting an era over 4 for the first time since 2004. Expect Halladay to rebound if healthy, the man is crafty and knows how to retire major league hitters.
#19-Zack Greinke-Los Angeles Dodgers
Zack Greinke will begin a new chapter in his career with the upstart Dodgers. Expect Greinke to put up huge numbers if he can handle being in the Dodger spotlight.
#18-Jordan Zimmerman-Washington Nationals
Jordan Zimmerman proved he belongs in the middle of the Nationals rotation posting a 12-8 record with 2.94 record. Expect the 26-year-old to produce higher win and strikeout totals this campaign.
#17-Aroldis Chapman-Cincinnati Reds
Aroldis Chapman could have the nastiest stuff in the major leagues but can he handle the grinds of a season as a starter. Worth the risk posting a 1.51 era in over 70 innings work in 2012.
#16-Yu Darvish-Texas Rangers
Yu Darvish lived up to the hype posting a 16-9 record with a 3.90 era in his rookie season in the majors. Darvish also put up a ton of strikeouts with 221, no reason he wont repeat.
#15-CC Sabathia-New York Yankees
CC Sabathia is one of the most consistent hurlers in the game. If he is healthy, bank it that he will at minimum get 15 wins and 200 strikeouts.
#14-Johnny Cueto-Cincinnati Reds
Johnny Cueto has registered back to back seasons with an era under 3.00. Last season Cueto was 19-9 with a 2.78 era and should be around those numbers again on a very good team.
#13-Chris Sale-Chicago White Sox
Chris Sale impressed in his first season as a starter racking up a 17-8 record 3.05 era and 192 strikeouts. Sale is still only 23 years of age and one of the most exciting young pitchers in the game.
#12-Cliff Lee-Philadelphia Phillies
Cliff Lee was snake-bitten early on in 2012, however, still managed a respectable era of 3.16 and 207 strike outs. Look for the win total to improve drastically and for Lee to regain his usual form.
#11-Madison Bumgarner-San Francisco Giants
Madison Bumgarner finished the season with a 16-11 record and an era of 3.37. Bumgarner is still only 23 and will continue to improve. He will undoubtedly win a CY Young award at some point in his career.
#10-Jered-Weaver-Los Angeles Angels
Jered Weaver hit the 20 win mark for the first time in his career posting MVP worthy numbers with a 20-5 record and 2.81 era for the Angels. Weaver should continue to dominate this season.
#9-Felix Hernandez-Seattle Mariners
King Felix should have lots to prove after signing his monster deal to remain in Seattle. The Mariners should be much improved so look for Hernandez to improve on his 13-9 record from last season.
#8-Cole Hamels-Philadelphia Phillies
Cole Hamels is still one of the most dominant pitchers in the game notching a 17-6 record with a 3.05 era last season. Hamels has taken over as the leader of the talented Phillies staff.
#7-Gio Gonzalez-Washington Nationals
Gio Gonzalez set a career high in wins earning 21 in his first season with the Washington Nationals. Hard to imagine he will repeat the win total but will still be a dominant force.
#6-Matt Cain-San Francisco Giants
Matt Cain completed his string of seven seasons with 30 or more starts earning a 16-5 record. Cain also set a career high with 193 strikeouts in 2012.
#5-David Price-Tampa Bay Rays
David Price set career highs in wins, era and whip last season. The 27-year-old won 20 games for the first time in his illustrious career. Price will continue to roll in 2013.
#4-R.A-Dickey-Toronto Blue Jays
R.A. Dickey defies all odds and keeps getting better with age. Dickey will bring his knuckle-ball north of the border and attempt to flutter his way to another CY Young award.
#3-Clayton Kershaw-Los Angeles Dodgers
Clayton Kershaw has had an era under 3.00 for four consecutive seasons and should only get better with the Dodgers team behind him. If Kershaw remains healthy the sky is the limit.
#2-Stephen Strasburg-Washington Nationals
Stephen Strasburg should be poised for a breakout season even improving on his 15-6 record and should notch over 200 strikeouts for the first time. Strasburg is a stud, do what you have to do to get him on your roster on draft day.
#1-Justin Verlander-Detroit Tigers
Justin Verlander continues to be an absolute workhorse for the Tigers amassing 238 innings pitched last season. Verlander notched 239 strikeouts and unless his arm falls off he will continue to stock pile wins and strikeouts at a Hall of Fame pace. Obvious No. 1.
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