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Fantasy Baseball Two-Start Pitchers: Week 19

by Michael Waterloo | @MichaelWaterloo | Featured Writer
Aug 6, 2021
Trevor Rogers

It’s time to be picky. We’ve reached August, which means it’s time to do a full assessment of where you are in your roto standings or where you are in your head-to-head playoff push.

We have to turn our focus on protecting our ratios, and we have to be wary of upcoming innings restrictions for pitchers, and more and more teams will proceed with caution moving forward to either A. have their guys rested for the playoff run or B. look toward 2022 after the COVID-shortened 2020 season.

Let’s keep all of that in mind as we look at Week 18.

Like I do every week, I’ll break the pitchers down the two-start pitchers into six categories:

  • Don’t Think Twice – These are your aces that you start no matter what.
  • Widely-Rostered Options – Players rostered in the majority of leagues who should provide a positive return.
  • In the Danger Zone – It’s a dice roll to start them given matchups or other factors.
  • Streamers Rostered in Under 50% of Leagues – These guys should live on the waiver wire, but you can start them this week.
  • Streamers Rostered in Under 25% of Leagues – Same as above, but applied to deeper leagues.
  • Not Unless You’re Desperate – I don’t recommend these guys unless you’re swinging for the fences.

Let’s take a look at those pitchers scheduled to make two starts for the upcoming week, as projected on CBS as of Friday afternoon.

Don’t Think Twice

Widely-Rostered Options

Jameson Taillon (8/9 @KC, 8/14 @CHW)
It took him a while, which is understandable coming off a second Tommy John surgery, and innings moving forward are a concern, but Taillon has had quite a turnaround since his disastrous start to the season. He was the AL Pitcher of the Month in July with a 1.16 ERA. I don’t love the White Sox matchup, but you’re definitely starting him this week for the double-dip. 

Sonny Gray (8/10 @ATL, 8/15 @PHI)
I expected more from Gray this year. He isn’t the top 25 pitcher I hoped he’d be, but you could still do worse. He’s in a bit of a tailspin, and Atlanta is being carried by the red-hot but very streaky bat of Jorge Soler. I’m going to start him and hope for at least one quality start. 

Trevor Rogers (8/10 @SD, 8/15 vs. CHC)
There are workload concerns with Rogers, too, as the Marlins should start scaling back on him each time he takes the mound. You don’t love the San Diego matchup, but that Cubs matchup is one of the best in baseball right now.

In the Danger Zone

Casey Mize (8/10 @BAL, 8/15 vs. CLE)
Now is a great time to acquire Mize in dynasty leagues. Mize has pitched five or fewer innings in five of his last six outings. It’s not a surprise, as the Tigers said as much, so despite the great matchups this week, you may only get one outing that qualifies for a win.

Jon Gray (8/10 @HOU, 8/15 @SF)
Gray has been pretty good this year, and he’s outside of Coors for a two-start week. Normally that would bump him up a tier, but he has two tough matchups on the schedule. He’s more of a points league guy for me this week.

Logan Gilbert (8/10 vs. TEX, 8/15 vs. TOR)
I love what I’ve seen from Gilbert. He’s one of my favorite young pitchers, and he’s really made adjustments after his first month in the show. But anyone who faces the Blue Jays in any stadium is going to get a slight bump down. The Texas matchup should make up for it, though.

Zac Gallen (8/10 @SF, 8/15 vs. SD)
It’s a good time to inquire about Gallen in keeper and dynasty leagues. If your trade deadline is August 15, it might even be a better time with two tough matchups ahead.

Carlos Carrasco (8/10 vs. WAS, 8/15 vs. LAD)
Carrasco looked good in his last outing, but he was capped at 62 pitches. He’ll continue to be built up, and he’s more of a points league option until he’s fully stretched out.

Streamers Rostered in Under 50% of Leagues

Steven Matz (8/10 vs. LAA, 8/14 @SEA)
Matz has been the definition of a streamer since his hot start to the season. I’m fine using him here in points leagues and 15-team standard leagues.

Zach Thompson (8/9 @SD, 8/14 vs. CHC)
Thompson was pulled early his last time out as he struggled against the Mets. Overall, though, he’s been really solid. There’s something in the water in Miami when it comes to pitchers. Invest in them all. 

Jake Odorizzi (8/10 vs. COL, 8/15 @LAA)
Odorizzi just can’t make it three times through the order. We saw that in 2019 with Minnesota, and Houston fans are seeing it now. I’m still streaming him here, but I don’t love it.

Streamers Rostered in Under 25% of Leagues

Luis Patiño (8/10 @BOS, 8/15 @MIN)
Patiño is going to be a stud, and that Blake Snell trade is looking better every day. He has a tall task against Boston on the road, but the Twins matchup should even things out.

Ross Stripling (8/10 vs. LAA, 8/15 @SEA)
Stripling was fantastic against the soon-to-be Guardians, and he said it was a “Pete Walker special,” referring to the Jays pitching coach. He has two-plus matchups on the table, so I’m using him.

Not Unless You’re Desperate

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Michael Waterloo is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Michael, check out his archive and follow him @MichaelWaterloo.

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