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Fantasy Baseball Draft 2014: Top 10 Starting Pitchers (SP)

Taking a Look at the Top 10 Starting Pitchers in the 2014 Fantasy Draft

February 26, 2014

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Over the past week or two, we’ve been visiting each position ahead of the 2014 fantasy draft and coming up with a list of the top 10 names in each slot. Today we’re moving on to starting pitchers, and as usual there’s a bevy of talent to be had. Here’s our take on the first 10 SP names you should be considering at the top-shelf level on draft day.

1. Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers: Regardless of where you look, Kershaw seems to be the consensus No. 1 pick at SP. Fresh off his shiny new contract, he’ll be gunning for a 20-win season, complete with a sub-2.50 ERA and sub-1.00 WHIP. 240 strikeouts isn’t out of the question, either.

Fantasy Baseball Draft 2014: Top 10 Starting Pitchers (SP)

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

2. Yu Darvish, Texas Rangers: Here’s where the opinions start to differ, but Darvish seems to be up here on a lot of boards. He’ll rack up the strikeouts (270 or so sounds reasonable) and will probably win around 15 games. His ERA could be a little lower, but if he can keep it in the 2.90 neighborhood he should be okay here.

3. Adam Wainwright, SP, St. Louis Cardinals: The Cards’ opening day starter will be Wainwright, and you should be proud to get him on your squad. He’ll flirt with 20 wins with a sub-3.00 ERA, and should post enough Ks to warrant a top pick. There’s not much to complain about here.

4. Felix Hernandez, Seattle Mariners: King Felix had his ups and downs in 2013, but should improve significantly in the upcoming campaign. With the extra run support he’s got a crack at winning 15 games and should come in with an ERA in the 2.90 area. Hernandez could be a sneaky pickup if your league-mates are judging by last year’s stats.

5. Max Scherzer, Detroit Tigers: We’ve seen Scherzer ranked higher than this, but never outside of the top five. If you really want him, you may have to reach in the No. 3 area or so, as he’s got a good chance at delivering 18 wins with a 3.00 ERA and 1.10 WHIP. Regardless of where you nab him, Scherzer seems like a pretty reliable pickup.

6. Jose Fernandez, Miami Marlins: Hopes are high for Fernandez this season, as he showed flashes of his potential in 2013. The Marlins are still a bad team, but should win a fair share of games with this youngster on the mound. We’re thinking 15-18 wins and a 2.80 ERA or so.

7. Stephen Strasburg, Washington Nationals: It’s strange seeing Strasburg ranked this low, but in all honesty we’re on the optimistic side. He just wasn’t himself in 2013, and is a prime candidate for a bounce-back campaign. If he can maintain form, expect him to finish in the neighborhood of 17 wins, 210 strikeouts and a 1.10 WHIP.

8. Cliff Lee, Philadelphia Phillies: If you want to draft Lee a little higher than this, go right ahead; He’s worth it. The ERA and WHIP numbers should come along nicely (we’d think 2.90 and 1.00, respectively), and you should see a healthy amount of strikeouts to his credit as well (210-ish). Whether or not he makes it to 15 wins is debatable, however.

9. Justin Verlander, Detroit Tigers: When he’s not hanging out with Kate Upton, Verlander plays baseball, and will make a fine addition to your starting rotation. The expectation is that he’ll rebound from a sketchy 2013, so he’s definitely a pickup for optimists. If all goes well, think 18 wins, a 1.20 WHIP and a sub-3.00 ERA.

10. David Price, Tampa Bay Rays: We’ve seen Price ranked all over the place this off-season, but No. 10 seems to be about average. He missed a little time last year, but still got to 10 wins (10-8). The ERA and strikeouts won’t carry your team, but he should contribute well in WHIP and overall record.

For the latest article updates, follow Andrew on Twitter @SCPAndrew.

 

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