Turn Two – Starting Pitchers











2015 FANFOOD Fantasy Baseball


- Starting Pitchers -


Last year we brought you “Five to Watch” for each position including prospects. They were the players that we found interesting at each position, ones you needed to keep an eye on during the spring before considering for your fantasy baseball team.

This year we give you two players at each position outside the top 10 that you can TURN inTO starters and win your fantasy baseball league championship. 2 players from each position we think you should watch closely this spring and plan accordingly. of course it’s followed by a great recipe, this time it’s Beer-Braised Carnitas

Timing is Everything/Be Flexible is just one of the 2015 FANFOOD Fantasy Baseball Drafting Strategies and many would say the most important.

We are not saying go out and get ALL these guys, just remember them when the time comes, and if you are looking to fill a need, or backup your projected starter, consider them and if the time is right and they are available, pull the trigger.



quick links:

[C] [1B[2B] [3B] [SS] [OF[SP] [RP] [Rookie/Prospects]




Fantasy Baseball Links







Starting Pitchers

In this game of Fantasy Baseball, pitching is half of your team. Every year there is debate on how to build a team through the draft. Do you build offense early and search for pitching later in the draft, or do you build a very strong pitching staff and ride them throughout the year? The answer is: You can do both.

Most every team will get roughly the same stats out of their SP1s, that is if you grab one of the top 12. It’s the teams that round out the rest of their rotation by making the smart choices later in the draft that will be at the top of the standings come September.

There’s a number of people that believe that since pitching is deep and good, that means you need to get the very best pitchers even more than ever before. If you wait, your pitching is good and theirs is great.

So, how many starting pitchers do you draft? When do you draft them? This depends on the settings in your league. How many teams are in your league? Are you playing in a ROTO or Points League? Is it Head to Head (H2H)? How many innings are you limited to? Is your league weighed heavier on things like Wins (W) or Quality Starts (QS)? These are some of the things you need to ask yourself and adjust your plan accordingly.

When it comes down to it, there are 6 types of Starting Pitchers to choose from.

The Elite
Bad Season
The Old Dogs
New Teams
Hidden Gems
The Rookies

Lets assume you are in a 12-team ROTO league that starts 2 pitchers each day and counts Wins, (W), Losses (L), Strikeouts (K), Earned Run Average (ERA), Walks and Hits per inning pitched (WHIP). Expect to see Clayton Kershaw go within the top five picks, and two or three more starting pitchers go in the first couple rounds. Another 10 or so will go in the next three rounds. Overall, you should expect to see 30 or more starting pitchers get drafted in the first 10 rounds of this 12-team draft. All that being said, here are 5 SPs that you can find outside the TOP 30 that will fill out your rotation nicely.



1. Carlos Carrasco (Indians)



Carrasco started 2014 as a starter but was demoted to the bullpen after four rough outings in late April. The 27-year-old regained his role as a starter in August, registering a 1.30 in his final 10 starts of the year.He’s slated to open the season in the team’s rotation. Carrasco finally translated his raw stuff into results in 2014, posting a 2.55 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 140/29 K/BB ratio over 134 innings. He’ll be a big part of the Tribe’s rotation in 2015.


He probably will get you close if not surpass 13 wins, give you more than 160 Ks, and keep his ERA under 3. That is TOP 30 in our book.

Where to Draft

If he falls outside the overall TOP 125, you got a steal. Expect him to start a SP run in round 10, maybe sooner.


2. Marcus Stroman (Blue Jays)



He stands in at 5-foot-9, not exactly the ideal size for a starting pitcher expected to pitch 200 innings per season. Stroman, the 22nd overall pick in the 2012 draft, made 26 appearances (20 starts) last season and posted a 3.64 ERA and 1.17 WHIP, including a 3.29 ERA and 1.15 WHIP as a starter. Chasing wins can often be an unfruitful pursuit, but the Jays should provide Stroman with plenty of run support in 2015. Toronto finished top five in baseball in 2014 in runs scored, and its offense got only better during the offseason. Here is a 23-year-old who induces tons of grounders, rarely hands out free passes and allows very little hard contact. He possesses a filthy assortment of pitches, including three offerings that generate lots of swings and misses, and has a long track record of racking up whiffs in the minors. He’s now got one of the game’s top pitch-framers catching him, and the offense behind him should be improved. Best of all, he’ll get to incorporate his best pitch — the sinker — for the entire 2015 season. In other words, what he did in 2014 was plenty impressive, but it could be just the tip of the iceberg.


He could reach 14 wins, 150 K’s and around a 3.60 ERA.  Sounds like upper tier to us.

Where to Draft

Y! has his ADP at 167 and if he lasts that long it would be surprising. He will probably be part of the SP run that starts in round 10 and lasts until round 12.


3. Drew Smyly (Rays)



He went 3-1 with a 1.70 ERA and a 0.76 WHIP once he joined the Rays in the David Price trade last season. He won’t be that good again, but the lefty can help you in all categories. Smyly had a 3.24 ERA and 133/42 K/BB ratio across 153 innings last season between the Tigers and Rays and appears poised to take another step forward in 2015.


He could get more than 12 wins for your team with around 170 K’s. All this with a mid-to-low-ERA in the 3′s will be a nice SP in the middle of your rotation

Where to Draft

Y! has him ranked just inside the TOP 200. That is too low for our taste. If you don’t get one of the guys above in the Great SP run of 2015, you can smile if you land Smyly.


4. Michael Pineda (Yankees)


The big right-hander was excellent when healthy in 2014, holding a 1.89 ERA and 59/7 K/BB ratio over 76 1/3 innings. He’s a health risk but has loads of upside for 2015. Injuries have plagued Pineda in his young MLB career. He missed the 2012 and 2013 seasons due to a shoulder injury and has made just 13 starts since making 28 as a rookie in 2011 with the Mariners. “I want to be healthy and strong,” Pineda said. “I want to be ready for 200 innings.” Pineda has the potential to be one of the Yankees’ top starting pitchers.


Keep in mind that the Yanks may go with a 6-man rotation to start the season. This will limit his starts a bit, but you can still count on double digit wins, 150+ K’s to go along with an ERA under 4.0.

Where to Draft

His ADP is hovering around #200. This is a bit low. He will last through the aforementioned SP run, and will be a nice addition if you don’t participate. Round 15 would be a good spot to draft him and his K’s.


5. Carlos Martinez (Cardinals)



This young guy has quietly waited in the wings, and now it’s his time to shine in the rotation. He is ready for full time starter duty, and although the 23-year-old owns a 4.28 ERA and 108/45 K/BB ratio over 117 2/3 innings in the majors, he has never thrown more than 108 innings in a season in pro ball. Look for him to be on an innings limit, but he’s an interesting name to watch in fantasy leagues for his immense raw talent. The fact he has RP-eligibility makes him even more enticing in Head-to-Head leagues.


It really wouldn’t be a stretch to see him get to 12 wins and 170 K’s. His ERA may be a bit higher than the guys mentioned before but it will be worth it.

Where to Draft

It all depends on his spring and if he earns a permanent spot in the rotation, but all signs point to the fact that he is and even though he will have an innings limit, you should be able to draft him to fill out your rotation late in your draft.



Top of Page



Actually it’s TOP 30


  1. Clayton Kershaw
  2. Felix Hernandez
  3. Corey Kluber
  4. Chris Sale
  5. Max Scherzer
  6. Stephen Strasburg
  7. David Price
  8. Madison Bumgarner
  9. Johnny Cueto
  10. Jake Arrieta
  11. Jordan Zimmermann
  12. Cole Hamels
  13. Jeff Samardzija
  14. Jon Lester
  15. Yu Darvish
  16. Matt Harvey
  17. Zack Greinke
  18. Hisashi Iwakuma
  19. Alex Wood
  20. Julio Teheran
  21. Collin McHugh
  22. Sonny Gray
  23. Tyson Ross
  24. Alex Cobb
  25. Gio Gonzalez
  26. Mike Fiers
  27. James Shields
  28. Jacob DeGrom
  29. Jose Quintana
  30. Adam Wainwright


Top of Page





2015 Fantasy Baseball  Links:

Top of Page





Beer-Braised Carnitas


2 dried New Mexico or guajillo chiles
4 pounds skinless, boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), cut into 2-inch pieces
12 ounces lager (such as Modelo Especial or Budweiser)
4 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
4 teaspoons kosher salt


Toast chiles in a dry large heavy pot over medium heat until slightly puffed and lightly darkened on both sides, about 2 minutes.

Remove from pot; let cool. Stem chiles and halve lengthwise; discard seeds.

Bring chiles, pork, beer, garlic, salt, and 1 cup water to a boil in same pot.

Reduce heat, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until pork is fork-tender, 60-80 minutes.

Uncover pork; simmer until liquid evaporates and pork begins to brown, 20-25 minutes.

Continue to cook, stirring frequently and scraping bottom of pot, until pork is shredded and browned, 10-15 minutes.

Add 1 cup water to pork; cook, scraping up browned bits from bottom of pot, for about 1 minute.

DO AHEAD: Carnitas can be made 3 days ahead. Let cool. Cover and chill.

Reheat with 1/2 cup water in a covered pot, adding more water if needed to keep pork moist.








Top of Page

High Heat , , , , ,

Review are closed.

© 2020 FANFOOD, LLC, All right reserved

Designed & Developed by
SilverTree Technology