Popular Features

Pitching Planner for Week 21 | Where Are All the Aces?

Tim McCullough Managing Editor August 21, 2017 7:34AM EST
Welcome to the Pitching Planner for Week 21. As we wind on down the home stretch it’s important to consider your team’s statistical needs when choosing pitchers. If you don’t need to gain ground or can’t afford to lose ground, you need to be very conservative in the pitcher choices, especially with any pitcher not among the Top25. However, if you need strikeouts or wins, you should pull out all the stoppers now and start everyone you possibly can with a decent matchup. If you’re careful about the matchups, you can still make up ground in the counting statistics. Don’t even bother trying to pick up points in the ratio stats. It’s too late at this point.

The table below will be published each week showing the expected pitching rotation matchups, whether the game is at home or on the road, and it will include the pitcher’s handedness (left-handers are designated with an “L”). Finally, you will note that each matchup is assigned a ranking numbered #1-5. This number refers to my recommendation as far as starting that pitcher in Fantasy play and the rankings break down as follows:

1 – Must-Start – These pitchers are aces and are virtually matchup proof.

2 – Favorable Start – These pitchers may or may not be aces but the matchup is favorable.

3 – Streaming Option – These pitchers are in a favorable matchup, so they can be started if needed.

4 – Risky Start – The matchup is prohibitively risky. Owners are advised to avoid this pitcher.

5 – Bench – Do not start this pitcher in this matchup.

 8-218-228-238-248-258-268-27
DiamondbacksTaijuan Walker (R) SP3
at. NYM
Robert Gsellman (R)
Patrick Corbin (L) SP4
NYM
Steven Matz (L)
Zack Godley (R)SP3
at. NYM
Chris Flexen (R)
Robbie Ray (L)SP3
at. NYM
Rafael Montero (R)
Zack Greinke (R) SP1
vs. SF
Ty Blach (L)
Taijuan Walker (R) SP3
vs. SF
Madison Bumgarner (L)
Patrick Corbin (L) SP3
vs. SF
Chris Stratton (R)
BravesMichael Foltynewicz (R) SP3
vs. SEA
Andrew Albers (L)
Lucas Sims (R) SP5
vs. SEA
Marco Gonzales (L)
R.A. Dickey (R) SP3
vs. SEA
Erasmo Ramirez (R)
Julio Teheran (R) SP4
vs. COL
Chad Bettis (R)
Sean Newcomb (L) SP4
vs. COL
Kyle Freeland (L)
Michael Foltynewicz (R) SP3
vs. COL
Jon Gray (R)
CubsJohn Lackey (R) SP2
at. CIN
Homer Bailey (R)
Mike Montgomery (L) SP3
at. CIN
Scott Feldman (R)
Jake Arrieta (R) SP2
at. CIN
Sal Romano (R)
Jose Quintana (L) SP3
at. PHI
Mark Leiter-Jr. (R)
Kyle Hendricks (R) SP2
at. PHI
Nick Pivetta (R)
John Lackey (R) SP2
at. PHI
Aaron Nola (R)
RedsHomer Bailey (R) SP4
vs. CHC
John Lackey (R)
Scott Feldman (R) SP4
vs. CHC
Mike Montgomery (L)
Sal Romano (R)SP4
vs. CHC
Jake Arrieta (R)
Robert Stephenson (R) SP3
vs. PIT
Ivan Nova (R)
Luis Castillo (R) SP3
vs. PIT
Gerrit Cole (R)
Homer Bailey (R)SP3
vs. PIT
Jameson Taillon (R)
RockiesJon Gray (R) SP4
at. KC
Danny Duffy (L)
Jeff Hoffman (R) SP4
at. KC
Ian Kennedy (R)
German Marquez (R) SP4
at. KC
Jason Vargas (L)
Chad Bettis (R)SP4
at. ATL
Julio Teheran (R)
Kyle Freeland (L)SP3
at. ATL
Sean Newcomb (L)
Jon Gray (R) SP4
at. ATL
Michael Foltynewicz (R)
DodgersAlex Wood (L) SP2
at. PIT
Gerrit Cole (R)
B. Stewart (R) SP5
at. PIT
Jameson Taillon (R)
Rich Hill (L) SP2
at. PIT
Trevor Williams (R)
Hyun-Jin Ryu (L) SP3
at. PIT
Chad Kuhl (R)
Kenta Maeda (R) SP2
vs. MLW
Brandon Woodruff (R)
Alex Wood (L) SP2
vs. MLW
Chase Anderson (R)
Yu Darvish (R) SP1
vs. MLW
Zach Davies (R)
MarlinsDan Straily (R)SP2
at. PHI
Nick Pivetta (R)
Jose Urena (R) SP3 at. PHI
Aaron Nola (R)
Justin Nicolino (L) SP4
at. PHI
Zach Eflin (R)
Vance Worley (R) SP3
at. PHI
Jerad Eickhoff (R)
D. Peters (L) SP5
vs. SD
Travis Wood (L)
A. Conley (R) SP3
vs. SD
Dinelson Lamet (R)
Dan Straily (R) SP3
vs. SD
Clayton Richard (L)
BrewersZach Davies (R) SP3
at. SF
Chris Stratton (R)
Jimmy Nelson (R) SP3
at. SF
Jeff Samardzija (R)
Matt Garza (R) SP5
at. SF
Matt Moore (L)
Brandon Woodruff (R) SP5
at. LAD
Kenta Maeda (R)
Chase Anderson (R) SP4
at. LAD
Alex Wood (L)
Zach Davies (R) SP4
at. LAD
Yu Darvish (R)
MetsRobert Gsellman (R) SP4
vs. ARZ
Taijuan Walker (R)
Steven Matz (L) SP4
vs. ARZ
Robbie Ray (L)
Chris Flexen (R) SP5
vs. ARZ
Patrick Corbin (L)
Rafael Montero (R) SP5
vs. ARZ
Zack Godley (R)
Jacob deGrom (R) SP1
at. WAS
Stephen Strasburg (R)
Robert Gsellman (R) SP4
at. WAS
Gio Gonzalez (L)
Steven Matz (L) SP4
at. WAS
A.J. Cole (R)
TBD
at. WAS
Tanner Roark (R)
PhilliesNick Pivetta (R) SP5
vs. MIA
Dan Straily (R)
Aaron Nola (R) SP2
vs. MIA
Jose Urena (R)
Zach Eflin (R) SP4
vs. MIA
Justin Nicolino (L)
Jerad Eickhoff (R) SP4
vs. MIA
Vance Worley (R)
B. Lively (R) SP5
vs. CHC
Jose Quintana (L)
Mark Leiter-Jr (R) SP4
vs. CHC
Kyle Hendricks (R)
Aaron Nola (R) SP2 vs. CHC
John Lackey (R)
PiratesGerrit Cole (R) SP2
vs. LAD
Alex Wood (L)
Jameson Taillon (R)SP4
vs. LAD
Yu Darvish (R)
Trevor Williams (R)SP5
vs. LAD
Rich Hill (L)
Chad Kuhl (R) SP4
vs. LAD
Hyun-Jin Ryu (L)
Ivan Nova (R) SP4
at. CIN
Robert Stephenson (R)
Gerrit Cole (R) SP2
at. CIN
Luis Castillo (R)
Jameson Taillon (R) SP4
at. CIN
Homer Bailey (R)
PadresClayton Richard (L) SP4
at. STL
Lance Lynn (R)
Jhoulys Chacin (R) SP3
at. STL
Luke Weaver (R)
Luis Perdomo (R) SP4
at. STL
Carlos Martinez (R)
Travis Wood (L) SP4
at. MIA
Adam Conley (L)
Dinelson Lamet (R) SP4
at. MIA
Odrisamer Despaigne (R)
Clayton Richard (L) SP4 at. MIA
Dan Straily (R)
GiantsChris Stratton (R) SP5
vs. MLW
Zach Davies (R)
Jeff Samardzija (R) SP3
vs. MLW
Jimmy Nelson (R)
Matt Moore (L) SP4
vs. MLW
Matt Garza (R)
Ty Blach (L) SP5
at. ARZ
Zack Greinke (R)
Madison Bumgarner (L) SP2
at. ARZ
Taijuan Walker (R)
Chris Stratton (R) SP5
at. ARZ
Robbie Ray (L)
CardinalsLance Lynn (R) SP2
vs. SD
Clayton Richard (L)
Luke Weaver (R) SP3
vs. SD
Jhoulys Chacin (R)
Carlos Martinez (R) SP2
vs. SD
Luis Perdomo (R)
Michael Wacha (R) SP2
vs. TB
Austin Pruitt (R)
Mike Leake (R) SP3
vs. TB
Jake Odorizzi (R)
Lance Lynn (R) SP2
vs. TB
Jacob Faria (R)
NationalsTanner Roark (R) SP4
at. HOU
Charlie Morton (R)
Edwin Jackson (R) SP4
at. HOU
Mike Fiers (R)
TBD
at. HOU
Dallas Keuchel (L)
Stephen Strasburg (R) SP2
vs. NYM
Jacob deGrom (R)
Gio Gonzalez (L) SP2
vs. NYM
Robert Gsellman (R)
A.J. Cole (R) SP3
vs. NYM
Steven Matz (L)
Tanner Roark (R)
vs. NYM
TBD
OriolesW. Miley (R) SP3
vs. OAK
Chris Smith (R)
Dylan Bundy (R) SP2
vs. OAK
Paul Blackburn (R)
Jeremy Hellickson (R) SP5
vs. OAK
Sean Manaea (L)
Kevin Gausman (R) SP3
at. BOS
Rick Porcello (R)
C. Tillman (R) SP5
at. BOS
Doug Fister (R)
W. Miley (R) SP3
at. BOS
Eduardo Rodriguez (L)
Red SoxDoug Fister (R) SP5
at. CLE
Mike Clevinger (R)
Eduardo Rodriguez SP2 (L)
at. CLE
Carlos Carrasco (R)
Drew Pomeranz (L) SP2
at. CLE
Corey Kluber (R)
Chris Sale (L) SP1
at. CLE
Trevor Bauer (R)
Rick Porcello (R) SP2
vs. BAL
Kevin Gausman (R)
Doug Fister (R) SP5
vs. BAL
Wade Miley (L)
Eduardo Rodriguez (L) SP2
vs. BAL
Ubaldo Jimenez (R)
White SoxCarlos Rodon (L) SP2
vs. MIN
TBD
C. Fulmer (R) SP3
vs. MIN
Dillon Gee (R)
L. Giolito (R) SP3
vs. MIN
Kyle Gibson (R)
James Shields (R) SP4
vs. MIN
Ervin Santana (R)
Derek Holland (L) SP5
vs. MIN
Jose Berrios (R)
Miguel Gonzalez (R) SP5
vs. DET
Michael Fulmer (R)
Carlos Rodon (L) SP2
vs. DET
Justin Verlander (R)
Reynaldo Lopez (R) SP5
vs. DET
Matt Boyd (L)
IndiansMike Clevinger (R) SP4
vs. BOS
Doug Fister (R)
Carlos Carrasco (R) SP1
vs. BOS
Eduardo Rodriguez (L)
Corey Kluber (R) SP1
vs. BOS
Drew Pomeranz (L)
Trevor Bauer (R) SP2
vs. BOS
Chris Sale (L)
Danny Salazar (R) SP1
vs. KC
Jake Junis (R)
Mike Clevinger (R) SP4
vs. KC
Jason Hammel (R)
Carlos Carrasco (R) SP1
vs. KC
Danny Duffy (L)
TigersMatt Boyd (L) SP4
vs. NYY
Jaime Garcia (L)
TBD
vs. NYY
Luis Severino (R)
Jordan Zimmermann (R) SP4
vs. NYY
Masahiro Tanaka (R)
Michael Fulmer (R) SP2
at. CWS
Miguel Gonzalez (R)
Justin Verlander (R) SP2
at. CWS
Carlos Rodon (L)
Matt Boyd (L) SP4
at. CWS
Reynaldo Lopez (R)
AstrosCharlie Morton (R)SP4
vs. WAS
Tanner Roark (R)
Mike Fiers (R) SP4
vs. WAS
Edwin Jackson (R)
Dallas Keuchel (L) SP2
vs. WAS
TBD
Collin McHugh (R) SP3
at. LAA
Parker Bridwell (R)
Brad Peacock (R) SP2
at. LAA
Tyler Skaggs (L)
Charlie Morton (R) SP3 at. LAA
Ricky Nolasco (R)
RoyalsDanny Duffy (L) SP2
vs. COL
Jon Gray (R)
Ian Kennedy (R) SP4
vs. COL
Jeff Hoffman (R)
Jason Vargas (L) SP2
vs. COL
German Marquez (R)
Jake Junis (R)SP5
at. CLE
Danny Salazar (R)
Jason Hammel (R) SP4
at. CLE
Mike Clevinger (R)
Danny Duffy (L) SP2
at. CLE
Carlos Carrasco (R)
AngelsTyler Skaggs (L) SP2
vs. TEX
Cole Hamels (L)
Ricky Nolasco (R) SP4
vs. TEX
Tyson Ross (R)
Andrew Heaney (L) SP4
vs. TEX
Andrew Cashner (R)
J. Chavez (R) SP4
vs. TEX
Martin Perez (L)
Parker Bridwell (R) SP4
vs. HOU
Collin McHugh (R)
Tyler Skaggs (L) SP4
vs. HOU
Brad Peacock (R)
Ricky Nolasco (R) SP4
vs. HOU
Charlie Morton (R)
TwinsT. Melville (R) SP5
at. CWS
Carlos Rodon (L)
Dillon Gee (R)SP5
at. CWS
Lucas Giolito (R)
Kyle Gibson (R)SP5
at. CWS
Reynaldo Lopez (R)
Ervin Santana (R) SP2
at. CWS
James Shields (R)
Jose Berrios (R) SP2 at. CWS
Derek Holland (L)
Bartolo Colon (R) SP5
at. TOR
Nick Tepesch (R)
Dillon Gee (R) SP5
at. TOR
Marco Estrada (R)
Kyle Gibson (R) SP5
at. TOR
Marcus Stroman (R)
YankeesJaime Garcia (L) SP2
at. DET
Matt Boyd (L)
M. Tanaka (R) SP2
at. DET
TBD
Luis Severino (R) SP2
at. DET
Jordan Zimmermann (R)
CC Sabathia (L) SP3
vs. SEA
Ariel Miranda (L)
Sonny Gray (R) SP2
vs. SEA
Yovani Gallardo (R)
Jaime Garcia (L) SP2
vs. SEA
Andrew Albers (L)
AthleticsChris Smith (R)
at. BAL
Ubaldo Jimenez (R)
Paul Blackburn (R) SP4
at. BAL
Dylan Bundy (R)
Sean Manaea (L) SP4
at. BAL
Jeremy Hellickson (R)
Kendall Graveman (R) SP4
vs. TEX
A.J. Griffin (R)
Jharel Cotton (R) SP4
vs. TEX
Cole Hamels (L)
D. Gossett (R) SP4
vs. TEX
Tyson Ross (R)
MarinersAndrew Albers (L) SP5
at. ATL
Michael Foltynewicz (R)
Marco Gonzales (L) SP3
at. ATL
Lucas Sims (R)
Erasmo Ramirez (R) SP3
at. ATL
R.A. Dickey (R)
Ariel Miranda (L) SP4
at. NYY
CC Sabathia (L)
Yovani Gallardo (R) SP2
at. NYY
Sonny Gray (R)
Andrew Albers (L) SP5
at. NYY
Jaime Garcia (L)
RaysJacob Faria (R) SP4
vs. TOR
Marcus Stroman (R)
Chris Archer (R) SP2
vs. TOR
Joe Biagini (R)
Alex Cobb (R) SP2
vs. TOR
J.A. Happ (L)
Austin Pruitt (R) SP5
at. STL
Michael Wacha (R)
Jake Odorizzi (R) SP4
at. STL
Mike Leake (R)
Jacob Faria (R) SP4
at. STL
Lance Lynn (R)
RangersCole Hamels (L) SP2
at. LAA
Tyler Skaggs (L)
Tyson Ross (R) SP4
at. LAA
Ricky Nolasco (R)
Andrew Cashner (R) SP3
at. LAA
Andrew Heaney (L)
Martin Perez (L) SP3
at. LAA
J.C. Ramirez (R)
A.J. Griffin (R) SP3
at. OAK
Kendall Graveman (R)
Cole Hamels (L) SP2
at. OAK
Jharel Cotton (R)
Tyson Ross (R) SP4
at. OAK
Chris Smith (R)
Blue JaysMarcus Stroman (R) SP2at. TB
Jacob Faria (R)
Joe Biagini (R) SP5
at. TB
Chris Archer (R)
J.A. Happ (L) SP2
at. TB
Alex Cobb (R)
Nick Tepesch (R) SP5
vs. MIN
Bartolo Colon (R)
Marco Estrada (R) SP2
vs. MIN
Dillon Gee (R)
Marcus Stroman (R) SP2
vs. MIN
Kyle Gibson (R)

TWO-START PITCHERS RANKED

Carlos Carrasco BOS, KC – Carrasco had a couple of bad outings to begin August but has righted the ship over his last two starts.

Aaron Nola MIA, CHC – Nola has a 2.69 ERA in nine home starts this season.

Danny Duffy COL, @CLE – Duffy has a 6.35 ERA over his last three starts. If you’re playing conservative sit him this week.

pitching planner

Alex Wood is one of the few aces with two starts this week. Photo by Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire

Jacob Faria TOR, @STL – Faria has struggled recently but if you need the strikeouts and wins you have to start him.

Cole Hamels @LAA, @OAK – Hamels is just 2-1 with a 4.00 ERA in seven road games. Play him but don’t count on a win.

Gerrit Cole LAD, @CIN – Cole has a 3.13 ERA since the All-Star break.

Lance Lynn SD, TB – Lynn has a 2.62 ERA at home this season.

Dan Straily @PHI, SD – A 3.63 ERA over his last four starts means the regression monster still hasn’t caught up with Straily.

Alex Wood @PIT, MIL – Wood continues to pitch like an ace with a 2.30 ERA overall.

Charlie Morton WAS, @LAA – 22 strikeouts over his last 19 innings makes him a must-start.

Carlos Rodon MIN, DET – Rodon has a 3.09 home ERA but no wins in four starts there.

Eduardo Rodriguez @CLE, BAL – E-Rod has a 4.78 ERA since the break but he also has 37 strikeouts over 32 innings. Someday the stuff will make him an ace.

Marcus Stroman @TB, MIN – His ERA is 2.30 since the break.

Mike Foltynewicz SEA, COL – He’s a disaster on the road but has a 3.48 ERA at home.

Mike Clevinger BOS, KC – Clevinger has a pair of tough starts here and a 5.08 ERA at home. Sit him.

Jaime Garcia @DET, SEA – His ERA is 5.64 since the trade to the Yankees. Just sayin’.

Rick Porcello @CLE, BAL – He’ll give you a couple of quality starts and maybe a win.

Tyler Skaggs TEX, HOU – He’s been serviceable at home and on the road.

Zach Davies @SF, @LAD – Davies is a road warrior with a 2.52 ERA on the road.

John Lackey @CIN, @PHI – Lackey is surging toward the finish line with a 3.06 ERA since the break.

Tanner Roark @HOU, NYM – Roark has a 3.13 ERA since the break.

Taijuan Walker @NYM, SF – He can be erratic but he’s got a pair of weak opponents this week.

I do not recommend any pitchers below this line for two starts in Week 21

Mike Clevinger BOS, KC – Clevinger has a pair of tough starts here and a 5.08 ERA at home. Sit him.

Jon Gray @KC, @ATL – Gray has a 6.34 ERA in road games this season. I’d sit him.

Reynaldo Lopez MIN, DET – He can’t be trusted with his 6.97 ERA in just two starts. Gotta wait before you trust him.

Jameson Taillon LAD, @CIN

Clayton Richard @STL, @MIA

Homer Bailey CHC, PIT

Robert Gsellman ARI, @WAS

Steven Matz ARI, @WAS

Chris Stratton MIL, @ARI

Andrew Albers @ATL, @NYY

Matt Boyd NYY, @CWS

Kyle Gibson @CWS, @TOR

Ricky Nolasco TEX, HOU

Tyson Ross @LAA, @OAK

Dillon Gee @CWS, @TOR

Chris Smith @BAL, TEX

STREAMING PITCHERS

One best bet streamer for each day of Week 21

MONDAY – Michael Foltynewicz vs. SEA – The Mariners are a light-hitting road team and Folty is terrific at home.

TUESDAY – Jose Urena vs. Phillies The Phillies strike out 23,6 percent of the time vs. RHPs.

WEDNESDAY – Zack Godley @ Mets  – Godley has a 3.13 ERA overall.

THURSDAY – Robbie Ray @ Mets – The Mets strike out 23.9 percent of the time vs. LHPs.

FRIDAY – Robert Stephenson vs. PIT – I’d start just about anyone against a terrible Pittsburg offense.

SATURDAY – A. Conley vs. SD – The Padres are another weak team to pick on just about every week.

SUNDAY – H. Bailey vs. SD – Heck, I’d even throw Bailey against the Padres.

Popular Features