The trade deadline is in the rearview mirror, and several starting pitchers are getting accustomed to their new homes.
Max Scherzer and Jordan Montgomery are adjusting to the Texas heat while Mad Max’s former teammate Justin Verlander returns home. Lucas Giolito is also celebrating a homecoming of sorts as he grew up in Southern California. His former teammate, Lance Lynn, is now a cross-town rival, but Eduardo Rodriguez is not, having rejected a trade to the first-place Dodgers to stay in Detroit.
Time will tell which of these moves make the most significant impact on the pennant race. In the meantime, let’s take a look at Week 19.
Top-50 Starting Pitchers: Aug. 7 – 13
As always, we begin our weekly rankings with the rest-of-season Expert Consensus Rankings (ECR) and adjust them based on the Pitcher Planner, the players’ season-to-date stats and recent performance. As many rotations are still shuffling from the addition or subtraction of starters from the trade deadline, double-check the planner before setting your lineup.
The complete top 50 is below, but first, let’s review some of next week’s more intriguing matchups.
Two-Start Starters With Attractive Schedules Next Week
Our top-ranked pitcher for next week is Spencer Strider, who’s an ace with road matchups at Pittsburgh and New York against the Mets. The Twins’ duo of Joe Ryan and Sonny Gray start the week at the lowly Tigers before taking on the Phillies in Philadelphia on the weekend. The Phillies aren’t a cakewalk, but they haven’t been as tough this year at home as expected.
Julio Urias will take on the Diamondbacks in Arizona, then return home to face the “Road Rockies.” His teammate, Tony Gonsolin, will also get the Rockies in L.A. but starts the week in San Diego. The surprising Zach Eflin has two home starts scheduled against the Cardinals and Guardians, while the last man standing for the White Sox, Dylan Cease, has a double date with the Yankees and Brewers in Chicago.
Two-Start Starters With Ugly Schedules Next Week
Four of our top 50 starters have two starts, with at least one that will make fantasy managers nervous. The Mets’ newly appointed ace, Kodai Senga, begins his tenure as their No. 1 by facing the Cubs and Braves in New York. Mitch Keller also has two home starts and will then take on Atlanta.
Alex Cobb travels south to take on the Angels to begin the week, then returns home to face the Rangers. The Guardians’ impressive rookie, Tanner Bibee, may have the worst two-start schedule of the week. He’ll take on the Jays in Cleveland first, then travel to Tampa in a matchup with the Rays.
One-Start Starters With Attractive Schedules Next Week
Several of our top starters for next week have one matchup that appears favorable on paper. New teammates Scherzer and Montgomery get some help acclimating to the AL with dates against the A’s in Oakland. Lynn, who faced the A’s in his first start as a Dodger, gets another cush matchup next week when he takes on the Rockies at home.
Three of our top 50 will face the Tigers. The Twins’ Bailey Ober and Kenta Maeda get them in Detroit, while Brayan Bello will square off against them at Fenway Park. Bello’s teammate, James Paxton, has been terrific in his comeback this season and will host the Royals at home next week. Finally, Blue Jays’ ace Kevin Gausman will cross the border and take on the Guardians in Cleveland.
One-Start Starters With Ugly Schedules Next Week
The list of starters with one potentially rough start next week is short. The only semi-scary matchups belong to Mariners’ teammates Luis Castillo and George Kirby, who face the Orioles at home. Baltimore’s offense is much better away from Camden Yards. They average 5.35 runs per game on the road compared to 4.43 at home.