#20 - Max Fried (RHP) Atlanta Braves
Fried is the #1 on the defending champion. Has nasty stuff and has really honed in on his control over the past two seasons. Look for the 28 year old to continue to improve and impress.
2021 Stats: W 14 / QS 19 / K 158 / ERA 3.04 / WHIP 1.09
2022 Projections: W 16 / QS 20 / K 174 / ERA 2.97 / WHIP 1.14
#19 - Shohei Ohtani (RHP) Los Angeles Angels
This one is tough because I love Ohtani. It's really just the injury history and the uniqueness of his position. I am fearful if he has any sort of injury set back the Angels might pitch him less to continue taking DH swings. I do not think he is injury prone whatsoever and last year proves that, just giving myself an excuse to draft someone else is all.
2021 Stats: W 9 / QS 14 / K 156 / ERA 3.18 / WHIP 1.09
2022 Projections: W 8 / QS 12 / K 154 / ERA 3.24 / WHIP 1.19
#18 - Logan Webb (RHP) San Francisco Giants
Giants pitchers are really good. Curious to see who ends the year as the Giants number one as with the addition of Rodon, San Francisco looks like their staff is going to be loaded. Webb had a fantastic year last year as he had drastic improvement with the ERA/WHIP. Youth is on his side and plays for a contender. What’s not to love?
2021 Stats: W 11 / QS 14 / K 158 / ERA 3.03 / WHIP 1.11
2022 Projections: W 14 / QS 18 / K 184 / ERA 2.89 / WHIP 1.06
#17 - Kevin Gausman (RHP) Toronto Bluejays
Toronto should be very happy with the newly acquired Gausman. The Bluejays are in a win-now mode and I love the move to go out and sign Gausman to bolster the rotation. Never hurts to add an arm who tossed over 225 strikeouts last season.
2021 Stats: W 14 / QS 20 / K 227 / ERA 2.81 / WHIP 1.04
2022 Projections: W 11 / QS 15 / K 209 / ERA 3.12 / WHIP 1.08
#16 - Chris Sale (LHP) Boston Red Sox
Sale is starting off the year on the IR yet I still feel very good about his end of year numbers. Pitched well when he came back last year and this rib fracture doesn’t scare me all too much as long as they don’t rush him back. Ribs are a tricky spot as every pitch you will feel something not right with the torso. Please get well soon Mr. Sale as I have selected you in 3/4 of my leagues this year!
2021 Stats: W 5 / QS 1 / K 52 / ERA 3.16 / WHIP 1.34
2022 Projections: W 14 / QS 19 / K 244 / ERA 2.71 / WHIP 1.04
#15 - Lance Lynn (RHP) Chicago White Sox
Another veteran ace starting the season off on the IR. Lynn looks to be ahead of schedule recovering from knee surgery but will most likely be another 4-6 weeks away from taking the mound. Stuff is still there at age 34 (35 - May 12th) but Lynn needs to rehab correctly with the knee which is a cause for concern in order.
2021 Stats: W 11 / QS 13 / K 176 / ERA 2.69 / WHIP 1.07
2022 Projections: W 12 / QS 14 / K 204 / ERA 2.68 / WHIP 1.11
#14 - Robbie Ray (LHP) Seattle Mariners
Last year’s AL Cy Young winner found himself a payday and a new home this offseason signing a 5 year / $115 mil. with Seattle. Don’t get me wrong, Ray had a fantastic year last year but I am not confident for the long run. 2021 was the first time since 2017 where Ray had a sub 3.00 ERA and for any pitchers ranked this high I am looking for someone who isn’t going to hurt me so much in the ERA department.
2021 Stats: W 13 / QS 23 / K 248 / ERA 2.84 / WHIP 1.04
2022 Projections: W 12 / QS 18 / K 228 / ERA 3.22 / WHIP 1.09
#13 - Freddy Peralta (RHP) Milwaukee Brewers
Milwaukee has been building a juggernaut in its pitching staff and the fact we are this high on the list and I still have two other Brewer’s to write about should attest to that. Peralta had a monster year last year with almost 200 strikeouts and sub 3.00 ERA. Not to mention an elite sub 1.00 WHIP. At age 25 the best has yet to come…I am all in.
2021 Stats: W 10 / QS 14 / K 195 / ERA 2.81 / WHIP 0.97
2022 Projections: W 12 / QS 16 / K 207 / ERA 2.67 / WHIP 0.96
#12 - Lucas Giolito (RHP) Chicago White Sox
The ace for the defending AL Central champion came into the season healthy and is now dealing with a “minor” abdomen issue. Should be good to go within a week or so but I’m not worried about the long term. I believe we will see Giolito come back and dominate this year. The Central division is trash and Giolito will be able to feast on inferior lineups all year long.
2021 Stats: W 11 / QS 15 / K 201 / ERA 3.53 / WHIP 1.10
2022 Projections: W 13 / QS 17 / K 217 / ERA 3.39 / WHIP 1.10
#11 - Aaron Nola (RHP) Philadelphia Phillies
The amount of strikeouts that he produces is stupid. Has a crazy 223:39 K/BB ratio and plays for a solid ball club. It’s the ERA here that I am not a fan of with Nola. Understood he had a sub 4.00 ERA between 2017-2020 but something to take note is that 4.63 ERA from last year.
2021 Stats: W 9 / QS 11 / K 223 / ERA 4.63 / WHIP 1.13
2022 Projections: W 13 / QS 15 / K 227 / ERA 3.81 / WHIP 1.09
#10 - Sandy Alcantara (RHP) Miami Marlins
Another weapon in the Miami rotation is our number 10 overall pitcher heading into the 2022 season. Alcantara was disgusting last year and some call him a breakout for this year but I think he has already broken out. I will be looking to draft and/or trade for Alcantara in all dynasty formats.
2021 Stats: W 9 / QS 23 / K 201 / ERA 3.19 / WHIP 1.07
2022 Projections: W 11 / QS 19 / K 211 / ERA 3.07 / WHIP 1.05
#9 - Shane Bieber (RHP) Cleveland Guardians
I am not taking health or last season into factor here which I know is wild to do. Bieber is just a fantastic pitcher and I am looking for him to throw for a full season and delivery excellent results yet again.
2021 Stats: W 7 / QS 11 / K 134 / ERA 3.17 / WHIP 1.21
2022 Projections: W 14 / QS 17 / K 222 / ERA 3.17 / WHIP 1.10
#8 - Julio Urias (LHP) Los Angeles Dodgers
The southpaw looks to continue his dominance from the mound as the number 2 in the Dodgers rotation. I would expect a regression in the Win column as 20 is a big number. I do like Urias just need to find him at the right asking price.
2021 Stats: W 20 / QS 13 / K 195 / ERA 2.96 / WHIP 1.02
2022 Projections: W 15 / QS 12 / K 201 / ERA 2.87 / WHIP 1.08
#7 - Max Scherzer (RHP) New York Mets
It's Max F@$king Scherzer. Only reason I have him at 7 in this list is due to age (dynasty leagues) but I’d be comfortable taking him in the first round in points leagues. He is absolutely disgusting and a first ballot HOFer.
2021 Stats: W 15 / QS 18 / K 236 / ERA 2.46 / WHIP 0.86
2022 Projections: W 14 / QS 18 / K 227 / ERA 2.67 / WHIP 0.92
#6 Jacob deGrom (RHP) New York Mets
deGrom is the best pitcher in baseball…..when HEALTHY. Understood I factor different things for different players but in this case deGrom’s health is vital to where he should be drafted and how his stats will look year end. If deGrom had a full bill of health I would consider drafting #1 overall in any format.
2021 Stats: W 7 / QS 11 / K 146 / ERA 1.08 / WHIP 0.55
2022 Projections: W 7 / QS 9 / K 141 / ERA 1.38 / WHIP 0.66
#5 - Zach Wheeler (RHP) Philadelphia Phillies
As we enter the top 5 in our rankings it’s assumed all of these guys from here on out are all elite pitchers. Philly has a really nice 1-2 punch going with Wheeler-Nola but Wheeler is just a different animal out there on the mound. Since 2018 Wheeler has thrown for the 3rd most innings in baseball so the consistency is there and why he lands in our top 5.
2021 Stats: W 14 / QS 20 / K 247 / ERA 2.78 / WHIP 1.01
2022 Projections: W 15 / QS 21 / K 251 / ERA 2.83 / WHIP 1.07
#4 - Brandon Woodruff (RHP) Milwaukee Brewers
Here we have the second of the three Milwaukee aces in 29 year old - Brandon Woodruff. Sub 3.00 ERA/1.00 WHIP and north of 200 K’s to go with 9 Wins and 20 Quality Starts? Another no brainer to start building your rotation with as he was able to throw north of 175 innings last year. On a contender with no significant health issues, looks like a winner to me.
2021 Stats: W 9 / QS 20 / K 211 / ERA 2.56 / WHIP 0.96
2022 Projections: W 11 / QS 19 / K 217 / ERA 2.81 / WHIP 1.04
#3 - Walker Buehler (RHP) Los Angeles Dodgers
Walker Buehler is a machine and now finds himself as the number 1 on the best team in baseball. Look for him to continue to dominate and push to be the best pitcher in baseball.
2021 Stats: W 16 / QS 27 / K 212 / ERA 2.47 / WHIP 0.97
2022 Projections: W 16 / QS 22 / K 204 / ERA 2.69 / WHIP 1.08
#2 - Corbin Burnes (RHP) Milwaukee Brewers
The third and final remaining ace from the Milwaukee rotation is reigning Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes. His stuff is disgusting and he looks to improve in his 5th season in the majors. The Brewers will rally behind Burnes this year as he continues to look like an absolute specimen out there. Only reason why I have him as #2 on this list is due to inning limit concerns. Other than that Burnes is as safe of a pick as any.
2021 Stats: W 11 / QS 18 / K 234 / ERA 2.43 / WHIP 0.94
2022 Projections: W 15 / QS 19 / K 237 / ERA 2.66 / WHIP 0.98
#1 - Gerrit Cole (RHP) New York Yankees
The Bronx Bombers need their prized possession to have yet another monster year if they have real World Series aspirations for this season. There is a reason the Yankees signed him to a 9yr/ $324 mil. deal and as a Yankee fan I look for Cole to earn every penny of that deal which I have full faith he will. Cannot go wrong with Cole in any format.
2021 Stats: W 16 / QS 18 / K 243 / ERA 3.23 / WHIP 1.06
2022 Projections: W 17 / QS 19 / K 271 / ERA 3.16 / WHIP 1.07