Two-Start Pitchers: Week One (7/23-8/2)
Welcome back, everyone! Baseball season is officially here, and I am pumped! Week one is finally here and that means it is time for two-start pitchers. With this week being 11 days, there are a lot of two-start options. I have broken them down and placed them into four different tiers. The tiers will be; must-start, should-start, questionable, and sit. Things are rapidly changing, so a few of these starts may change, especially with week one being 11 days.
It is also important to note that just because a starting pitcher will make two starts does not make that pitcher more valuable than a single start pitcher. In a weekly head-to-head league, two bad starts will likely cost you in the ratio categories. This weekly article will help you find the best two-start pitchers to help you succeed.
Each tier will have a chart breaking down each pitcher’s two starts for the week. It will feature that teams 2019 hitting wOBA against that particular pitcher’s hardiness. So for Justin Verlander, both teams he faces for this coming week’s wOBA will be list against right-handed pitchers. The same applies to left-handed pitchers. The chart is categorized by teams, not ranking. The west coast teams are at the top of the table and work to the east coast.
What?! Your league is not planning on using Fantrax? Inconceivable! Check out everything Fantrax has to offer and I’m sure you’ll come around to our way of thinking.
Two-Start Pitcher’s Tier Description:
Must-Start: These pitchers are no doubters for the week. Most of these two-start pitchers should be started every time they pitch.
Should-Start: Two-start pitchers in the should-start tier are good options for the week but may have some hesitations for different reasons.
Questionable: Two-start pitchers in this tier may be used for deeper leagues but should most likely not be started.
Sit: Do not start these pitchers.
*Reminder that this article was published Wednesday morning, starters for the following week are subject to change.
|Pitcher||Start 1||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)||Start 2||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)|
|Justin Verlander(RHP)||Seattle||.310||Los Angeles Dodgers||.326|
|Zack Greinke(RHP)||Seattle||.310||@Los Angeles Angels||.317|
|Clayton Kershaw(LHP)||San Francisco||.294||@Houston||.363|
|Chris Paddack(RHP)||Arizona||.308||@San Francisco||.295|
|Mike Clevinger(RHP)||Kansas City||.303||@Minnesota||.342|
|Shane Bieber(RHP)||Kansas City||.303||Chicago White Sox||.301|
|Jose Berrios(RHP)||@Chicago White Sox||.300||Cleveland||.316|
|Frankie Montas(RHP)||Los Angeles Angels||.317||Colorado||.323|
|Corey Kluber(RHP)||Colorado||.323||@San Francisco||.295|
|Sony Gray(RHP)||Detroit||.285||Chicago Cubs||.333|
|Luis Castillo(RHP)||Detroit||.285||Chicago Cubs||.333|
|Brandon Woodruff(RHP)||@Chicago Cubs||.333||@Pittsburgh||.322|
|Aaron Nola(RHP)||Miami||.288||@New York Yankees||.343|
|Max Scherzer(RHP)||New York Yankees||.343||Toronto||.308|
|Stephen Strasburg(RHP)||New York Yankees||.343||@Toronto||.308|
|Patrick Corbin(LHP)||New York Yankees||.355||@Miami||.289|
- Most of these two-start pitchers in the must-start category will be pitchers that you should start almost every time out. You likely spent a high draft pick on these guys.
- Justin Verlander gets a tough visit from the Dodgers, his second start out. He will get a nice tune-up against the Mariners before facing the Dodgers.
- Walker Buehler will have a tough first matchup against the Astros. It is unlikely he goes deep into the game, but he is still a must-start option.
- Trevor Bauer gets to face Detroit twice, once at home and once on the road. This is Bauer’s chance to start the season hot.
- The Indians duo of Mike Clevinger and Shane Bieber have favorable matchups to begin the year. Bieber gets Kansas City and the White Sox at home. Clevinger gets Kansas at home and Minnesota on the road. The Twins have a monster lineup, but Clevinger should put them to the test.
- The Nationals top three of Scherzer, Strasburg, and Corbin all get the Yankees to begin the year. It is not an easy matchup against one of the best lineups in baseball, but they are still must-start options.
- How will Blake Snell’s elbow hold up? We will get to see against an intriguing Blue Jays lineup and then the Orioles in his second outing.
- Corey Kluber gets the Rockies at home and San Francisco on the road to start. What version of Kluber will we get? In these favorable matchups, let’s hope Kluber starts strong.
|Pitcher||Start 1||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)||Start 2||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)|
|Shohei Ohtani (RHP)||@Oakland||.323||Houston||.351|
|Josh James (RHP)||Seattle||.310||@Los Angeles Angels||.317|
|Lance McCullers (RHP)||Seattle||.310||@Los Angeles Angels||.317|
|Lance Lynn (RHP)||Colorado||.323||@San Francisco||.295|
|Mike Minor (LHP)||Colorado||.337||@San Francisco||.294|
|Sean Manaea (LHP)||Los Angeles Angels||.315||@Seattle||.324|
|Carlos Carrasco (RHP)||Kansas City||.303||@Minnesota||.341|
|Madison Bumgarner (LHP)||@San Diego||.322||@Texas||.313|
|German Marquez (RHP)||@Texas||.319||San Diego||.299|
|Garrett Richards (RHP)||Arizona||.308||@San Francisco||.295|
|Matt Boyd (LHP)||@Cincinnati||.312||Kansas City||.298|
|Kenta Maeda (RHP)||@Chicago White Sox||.301||Cleveland||.316|
|Kyle Hendricks (RHP)||Milwaukee||.322||@Cincinnati||.312|
|Hyun-Jin Ryu (LHP)||@Tampa Bay||.318||Washington||.347|
|Mike Soroka (RHP)||@New York Mets||.320||Tampa Bay||.321|
|Max Fried (LHP)||@New York Mets||.338||Tampa Bay||.318|
|Sandy Alcantara (RHP)||@Philadelphia||.310||@Baltimore||.307|
|Caleb Smith (LHP)||@Philadelphia||.326||@Baltimore||.310|
|Robbie Ray (LHP)||@San Diego||.322||Los Angeles Dodgers||.326|
|Zac Gallen (RHP)||@San Diego||.299||Los Angeles Dodgers||.344|
|Ross Stripling (RHP)||San Francisco||.295||@Arizona||.308|
|Alex Wood (LHP)||San Francisco||.294||@Arizona||.349|
|Julio Urias (LHP)||San Francisco||.294||@Arizona||.349|
- This tier features two-start pitchers that you should start.
- Lance McCullers and Josh James both start the season with Seattle and the Angels. These are two pitchers who I have pumped up all Fantasy draft season. James pitched almost exclusively out of the bullpen in 2019, and McCullers missed the 2019 season after having Tommy John surgery. These two starts will hopefully set the pace for solid seasons from both starters.
- Lance Lynn had an incredible 2019 season. He gets two excellent matchups to start the year with Colorado at home and in San Francisco. Lynn is borderline must start for week one.
- Garrett Richards is severely underrated by many, and he has two favorable matchups to begin the year with Arizona and San Francisco. If he can prove to be healthy, he could be an excellent option moving forward.
- Popular breakout pick Matt Boyd has a tough matchup in Cincinnati to start the year but then gets Kansas City at home. If Boyd can start strong against the Reds, he can set the tone for an excellent season.
- The Braves top two starters in Mike Soroka, and Max Fried face solid Mets and Tampa Bay Rays lineups to begin the year. This will be a tough test for the two youngsters who many fantasy players are counting on.
- There has been much buzz about Robbie Ray’s change in his mechanics. Many have bumped him up Fantasy draft boards. I want to see how he performs in-game. He will be put to the test by the Padres and the Dodgers.
- Shohei Ohtani will start every Sunday. When he pitches, he has been ace caliber. He gets two tough matchups with Oakland and Houston to begin the year.
|Pitcher (RHP/LHP)||Start 1||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)||Start 2||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)|
|Griffin Canning (RHP)||@Oakland||.323||Houston||.351|
|Andrew Heaney (LHP)||@Oakland||.340||Seattle||.324|
|Mike Fiers (RHP)||Los Angeles Angels||.317||@Seattle||.310|
|Chris Bassitt (RHP)||Los Angeles Angels||.317||@Seattle||.310|
|Jon Gray (RHP)||@Texas||.319||San Diego||.299|
|Luke Weaver (RHP)||@San Diego||.299||Los Angeles Dodgers||.344|
|Joey Lucceshi (LHP)||@San Francisco||.294||@Colorado||.337|
|Dinelson Lamet (RHP)||Arizona||.308||@Colorado||.323|
|Zach Davies (RHP)||Arizona||.308||@Colorado||.323|
|Johnny Cueto (RHP)||@Los Angeles Dodgers||.344||San Diego||.299|
|Jeff Samardzjia (RHP)||@Los Angeles Dodgers||.344||San Diego||.299|
|Aaron Civale (RHP)||Chicago White Sox||.301||@Minnesota||.342|
|Dallas Keuchel (LHP)||Minnesota||.361||@Kansas City||.298|
|Dylan Cease (RHP)||@Cleveland||.316||@Kansas City||.303|
|Reynaldo Lopez (RHP)||Minnesota||.342||@Kansas City||.303|
|Spencer Turnbull (RHP)||@Cincinnati||.312||Cincinnati||.312|
|Ivan Nova (RHP)||@Cincinnati||.312||Kansas City||.303|
|Danny Duffy (LHP)||@Cleveland||.325||@Detroit||.302|
|Jakob Junis (RHP)||@Cleveland||.316||@Detroit||.286|
|Mike Montgomery (LHP)||@Cleveland||.325||@Chicago White Sox||.330|
|Wade Miley (LHP)||Chicago Cubs||.318||@Detroit||.302|
|Anthony DeSclafani (RHP)||Chicago Cubs||.333||@Detroit||.286|
|Adrian Houser (RHP)||@Chicago Cubs||.333||St. Louis||.312|
|Corbin Burnes (RHP)||@Chicago Cubs||.333||St. Louis||.312|
|Josh Lindblom (RHP)||@Pittsburgh||.322||St. Louis||.312|
|Joe Musgrove (RHP)||@St. Louis||.312||Milwaukee||.322|
|Trevor Williams (RHP)||@St. Louis||.312||@Chicago Cubs||.333|
|Mitch Keller (RHP)||Milwaukee||.322||@Chicago Cubs||.333|
|Adam Wainwright (RHP)||Pittsburgh||.322||@Milwaukee||.322|
|Dakota Hudson (RHP)||Pittsburgh||.322||@Milwaukee||.322|
|Asher Wojciechowski (RHP)||@Miami||.288||Tampa Bay||.322|
|Nathan Eovaldi (RHP)||Baltimore||.307||New York Mets||.320|
|Martin Perez (LHP)||Baltimore||.310||@New York Mets||.338|
|Ryan Yarbrough (LHP)||Toronto||.312||@Atlanta||.328|
|Tanner Roark (RHP)||@Tampa Bay||.322||Washington||.332|
|Jose Urena (RHP)||@Philadelphia||.310||Washington||.332|
|Pablo Lopez (RHP)||Baltimore||.307||Washington||.332|
|Elieser Hernandez (RHP)||Baltimore||.307||Washington||.332|
|Marcus Stroman (RHP)||Atlanta||.333||Boston||.342|
|Rick Procello (RHP)||Atlanta||.333||@Atlanta||.333|
|Jake Arrieta (RHP)||Miami||.288||@New York Yankees||.343|
|Zach Eflin (RHP)||Miami||.288||@Toronto||.309|
|Anibal Sanchez (RHP)||Toronto||.309||@Miami||.288|
|Vince Velasquez (RHP)||New York Yankees||.343||@Toronto||.309|
- There are some interesting two-start pitchers in the questionable range. A few of the players are guys I like but want to see how they perform before moving them into the start range. If you have a deep enough rotation to not start these pitchers in week one, it may be best. But there are plenty of pitchers in this range who could be solid performers.
- Griffin Canning is an intriguing option but is coming off of an injury. He has looked good in summer camp games but has two difficult matchups with the Athletics and the Astros. I would prefer to leave him on my bench for these two outings.
- Luke Weaver has a great start to the 2019 season before straining his UCL. He has a decent matchup in San Diego before getting the Dodgers at home. If you are in a daily lineup league, start him against the Padres before deciding on whether to start him against the Dodgers.
- Dinelson Lamet, a popular breakout pick, gets the Diamondbacks at home, but then travels to the dreaded Coors Field. If you can avoid fringe pitchers in Coors Field, it would be a wise move.
- Aaron Civale is another pitcher I am very high on. The White Sox have a much-improved lineup to test Civale in his first start. Then a trip to Minnesota makes for a tough start to the season.
- Corbin Burnes has looked stellar in summer camp. He will start the Brewers’ second game against the Cubs.
- Mitch Keller is a pitcher worth monitoring. He has starts against the Brewers and the Cubs. Both have solid lineups.
- Vince Velasquez made Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and Gary Sanchez look silly by striking them out in a game on Monday. If Wheeler is not ready to start the season due to the birth of his child, Velasquez could get the start Saturday against the Marlins, which would be a massive upgrade from his scheduled first start against the Yankees. If he goes against the Marlins, he might be worth starting.
|Pitcher||Start 1||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)||Start 2||wOBA vs. (RHP/LHP)|
|Marco Gonzales (LHP)||@Houston||.363||Oakland||.340|
|Yusei Kikuchi (LHP)||@Houston||.363||Oakland||.340|
|Kendall Graveman (RHP)||@Houston||.351||Oakland||.322|
|Justus Sheffield (LHP)||@Houston||.363||Oakland||.340|
|Dylan Bundy (RHP)||@Oakland||.322||Houston||.351|
|Kyle Freeland (LHP)||@Texas||.313||San Diego||.322|
|Kevin Guasman (RHP)||@Los Angeles Dodgers||.344||Texas||.319|
|Drew Smyly (LHP)||@Los Angeles Dodgers||.326||Texas||.313|
|Logan Webb (RHP)||San Diego||.299||Texas||.319|
|Zach Plesac (RHP)||Chicago White Sox||.301||@Minnesota||.342|
|Tyler Alexander (LHP)||Kansas City||.298||Cincinnati||.312|
|Michael Fulmer (RHP)||Kansas City||.303||Cincinnati||.312|
|Jorge Lopez (RHP)||@Detroit||.286||Chicago White Sox||.301|
|Homer Bailey (RHP)||St. Louis||.312||Cleveland||.316|
|Jon Lester (LHP)||Milwaukee||.328||Pittsburgh||.289|
|Tyler Chatwood (RHP)||@Cincinnati||.312||Pittsburgh||.310|
|Alec Mills (RHP)||@Cincinnati||.312||Pittsburgh||.310|
|Steven Brault (LHP)||@St. Louis||.322||@Chicago Cubs||.318|
|Tommy Milone (LHP)||@Boston||.342||Miami||.289|
|Alex Cobb (RHP)||@Boston||.342||Miami||.288|
|Wade LeBlanc (LHP)||@Boston||.328||Tampa Bay||.318|
|Ryan Weber (RHP)||Baltimore||.307||@New York Yankees||.343|
|Brian Johnson (LHP)||New York Mets||.338||@New York Yankees||.355|
|JA Happ (LHP)||@Washington||.347||Boston||.328|
|Matt Shoemaker (RHP)||@Tampa Bay||.322||Philadelphia||.310|
|Trent Thornton (RHP)||@Washington||.332||Philadelphia||.310|
|Sean Newcomb (LHP)||@Tampa Bay||.318||New York Mets||.338|
|Kyle Wright (RHP)||@Tampa Bay||.322||New York Mets||.320|
|Steven Matz (LHP)||@Boston||.328||@Atlanta||.328|
|Michael Wacha (RHP)||@Boston||.342||@Atlanta||.333|
- Most of these two-start pitchers are not worth considering starting. A lot of these pitchers may not be rostered in Fantasy leagues, and some have tough matchups.
- The Mariners have a brutal start to the year with both Houston and Oakland. Both teams smashed left-handed pitching last season, and the Mariners have three lefties scheduled to pitch against both the Astros and Athletics.
- With John Means still sidelined, Tommy Milone will be the Orioles Opening Day starter against the Red Sox. Tommy Milone against Nathan Eovaldi may go down as one of the most interesting Opening Day pitching matchups ever.
- The Braves young starters in Sean Newcomb and Kyle Wright have tough matchups with the Mets and the Rays. While I think both can be solid pitchers, I want to see how they perform against Major League action to begin the season.
Be sure to check back every Friday for the weekly two-start pitchers.
For now, be sure to check out Nathan Dokken’s “Top 100 SP for a Shortened Season.”
Fantrax was one of the fastest-growing fantasy sites of 2019 and we’re not letting our foot off the pedal now! With multi-team trades, designated commissioner/league managers, and drag/drop easy click methods, Fantrax is sure to excite the serious fantasy sports fan – sign up now for a free year at Fantrax.com.