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2023 Dynasty Starting Pitcher Rankings

Pitching can be somewhere between fickle and erratic, especially in dynasty leagues. Injury risk is higher for pitchers and can knock out full prime seasons. Mix that with seemingly random fall-offs every season and former top prospects routinely landing in the bullpen and it makes the process of forming long-term dynasty starting pitcher rankings a difficult task.

As always, a variety of factors come into play here, including implied injury risk and age. For competing teams, it’s fine to “overpay” with prospects to land a veteran arm to help you cash in your league right now. Rebuilding teams need to take advantage of this. If you can land a high-upside prospect or two for an aging pitcher, go ahead and take that shot. Those teams could also buy low on injured arms that could return value at a later time.

The season is not here yet, but why not get a head start and jump in a Fantrax Classic Draft contest? Get a jump on the season with a Best Ball league or maybe a Draft and Hold. Or put some green on the line with a new season-long league to try and conquer. There’s no better time than now to get your baseball on!

Player Notes

  • Shohei Ohtani is a cheat code. Having a player that can finish top-5 in Cy Young voting while simultaneously drilling 30+ homers just isn’t fair That’s why he’s earned his own tier. In leagues where Ohtani’s pitcher and batter versions are two separate players, he’d slot in somewhere in the top half of Tier 2 here. He led the AL with 11.9 K/9 while registering a terrific 2.33 ERA (2.40 FIP). He’s a superstar in every way and the most valuable fantasy player in just about every format.
  • Corbin Burnes leads all the non-Ohtani candidates. He followed his dominant Cy Young season with another strong one. Burnes posted a 2.94 ERA (3.14 FIP) with an NL-leading 243 punchouts. He’s established himself as one of the most imposing pitchers in the game and he’s just entering his age-28 season. The 6-foot-3 righty finished sixth among all qualified pitchers with a 24.1 K-BB% and third with a 15.1% swinging strike rate. Burnes gave up just nine homers in 226.2 frames in 2020 and 2021. The 23 he served up in 2022 were a big reason for the uptick in his ERA. Even if he maintains that higher home run rate, Burnes is a perennial Cy Young candidate and fantasy stud.
  • I may be early putting Shane McClanahan over Gerrit Cole already but the kid is filthy. The 25-year-old led the MLB with a 32.8 CSW% (called strikes + whiffs), finished sixth with a 24.3 K-BB%, and allowed the lowest zone-contact rate (79.5%). That all culminated in a 2.54 ERA (3.00 FIP) with a 10.5 K/9 across 166.1 innings. He increased his changeup usage in 2022 and completely embarrassed opposing hitters with it. Opponents hit just .145 with a .181 slugging against that pitch while McClanahan got a whopping 44.6% whiff rate with it. There is some injury and workload concern here, as there is with nearly every MLB pitcher, but even 170 innings from McClanahan provides ace-level value.

  • One of the most impressive rotations in baseball belongs to the Seattle Mariners. The team has four starting pitchers ranked in the top-40, including three in Tier 3. George Kirby leads the group after a rookie campaign in which he posted a 3.30 ERA (2.99 FIP) with a 20.5 K-BB%. His deep arsenal is headlined by a mid-90s fastball that held opposing batters to a .259 wOBA last season. A safe option for win-now teams would be Luis Castillo, who posted a career-low 2.99 ERA in 2022. Speaking of impressive fastballs, opposing batters hit just .152 with a .194 slugging against Castillo’s 97mph four-seam. Finally, Logan Gilbert’s second MLB season ended with a stellar 3.20 ERA across 185.2 frames. His strikeout rate isn’t as exciting (8.4 K/9) but he’s shown the ability to handle a full workload at the top level. Depending on your current roster situation, you can’t go wrong with any of this trio.
  • When it comes to prospects, I believe Andrew Painter and Grayson Rodriguez are in a tier of their own. As far as high-school arms go, Painter had a fairly high floor as a draft prospect. He then flew from Low-A to Double-A in 2022 while posting a 1.56 ERA through 103.2 frames. His terrific 32.4 K-BB% was the best among all minor leaguers with at least 55 innings pitched. There’s a chance that Painter makes the Phillies’ roster out of spring training but he should debut in 2023 either way. As for Rodriguez, an oblique injury is the only reason didn’t debut last season. He posted a 2.62 ERA while allowing just two homers through 75.2 innings. He’s been among the best pitching prospects in the league for several years and will almost certainly have a spot in Baltimore’s rotation out of the gate.

Quick Hits

  • Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer continue to taunt Father Time. Both are obviously top redraft arms but they lose value here due to their age. We have no idea how long either one intends to continue pitching, but if you’re in a competitive window in your dynasty league, feel free to ride it out until they hang up the cleats.
  • Freddy Peralta has surpassed the 100-inning mark just once in his MLB career. That happened in 2021 when he racked up 195 strikeouts with a 2.81 ERA across 144.1 frames. His whiff rate dropped in 2022 but he still prevents hard contact and barrels. If Peralta can stay on the mound for a full season, expect something closer to his 2021 All-Star campaign and a climb in the rankings.
  • Reid Detmers is probably looking for some more consistency in 2023. After firing a no-hitter on May 10, he posted a 5.67 ERA over his next six starts before a one-start demotion to Triple-A where he struck out 14 batters in six innings. In his eight following starts, Detmers posted a 1.97 ERA with a 55:18 K:BB. The 23-year-old saw better results with the slider and four-seam, giving him something to build on this year.

  • Like Masataka Yoshida on the outfield rankings, it’s tough to rank fellow NPB-import Kodai Senga. The 30-year-old righty has posted a 2.42 ERA with a 10.3 K/9 across 1340.2 professional innings in Japan. It’ll be interesting to see how hitters adjust to his arsenal, specifically his “ghost fork,” throughout the season. Seeing Senga move 10+ spots in either direction on this list by the end of the season wouldn’t be surprising.

2023 Fantasy Starting Pitcher Dynasty Rankings

Ohtani Tier
1Shohei OhtaniLAA28.8
Tier 1
2Corbin BurnesMIL28.5
3Shane McClanahanTBR25.9
4Gerrit ColeNYY32.6
5Spencer StriderATL24.4
Tier 2
6Aaron NolaPHI29.8
7Sandy AlcantaraMIA27.6
8Dylan CeaseCHW27.3
9Shane BieberCLE27.8
10Brandon WoodruffMIL30.2
11Julio UriasLAD26.6
12Zac GallenARI27.7
Tier 3
13Alek ManoahTOR25.2
14Carlos RodonNYY30.3
15Max FriedATL29.2
16Cristian JavierHOU26.0
17Jacob DeGromTEX34.8
18George KirbySEA25.2
19Zack WheelerPHI32.9
20Luis CastilloSEA30.3
21Kevin GausmanTOR32.2
22Logan GilbertSEA25.9
23Joe MusgroveSDP30.3
Tier 4
24Tyler GlasnowTBR29.6
25Logan WebbSFG26.4
26Triston McKenzieCLE25.7
27Framber ValdezHOU29.4
28Andrew PainterPHI20.0
29Grayson RodriguezBAL23.4
30Nick LodoloCIN25.2
31Hunter GreeneCIN23.7
32Blake SnellSDP30.3
33Dustin MayLAD25.6
34Luis SeverinoNYY29.1
35Justin VerlanderNYM40.1
36Max ScherzerNYM38.7
37Nestor CortesNYY28.3
38Shane BazTBR23.8
Tier 5
39Robbie RaySEA31.5
40Kyle WrightATL27.5
41Freddy PeraltaMIL26.8
42Yu DarvishSDP36.6
43Ricky TiedemannTOR20.6
44Kyle HarrisonSFG21.6
45Eury PerezMIA20.0
46Clayton KershawLAD35.1
47Hunter BrownHOU24.6
48Jesus LuzardoMIA25.5
49Luis GarciaHOU26.3
50Drew RasmussenTBR27.7
51Reid DetmersLAA23.7
52Joe RyanMIN26.8
53Tony GonsolinLAD28.9
54Kodai SengaNYM30.2
55Pablo LopezMIN27.1
56Edward CabreraMIA25.0
57Walker BuehlerLAD28.7
58Gavin WilliamsCLE23.7
59Lance McCullersHOU29.5
60Brady SingerKCR26.7
61Jordan MontgomerySTL30.3
62Taj BradleyTBR22.0
Tier 6
63Brandon PfaadtARI24.5
64Gavin StoneLAD24.5
65Jeffrey SpringsTBR30.5
66Jack FlahertySTL27.5
67Daniel EspinoCLE22.2
68Roansy ContrerasPIT23.4
69Patrick SandovalLAA26.5
70Bobby MillerLAD24.0
71Tink HenceSTL20.7
72Lucas GiolitoCHW28.7
73Aaron AshbyMIL24.9
74Hayden WesneskiCHC25.3
75DL HallBAL24.5
76Mason MontgomeryTB22.8
77Tyler MahleMIN28.5
78Sonny GrayMIN33.4
79Tarik SkubalDET26.4
80Michael SorokaATL25.7
81Chris BassittTOR34.1
82Cody MorrisCLE26.4
83Tanner BibeeCLE24.1
84Chris SaleBOS34.0
85Lance LynnCHW35.9
86Brayan BelloBOS23.9
87Trevor RogersMIA25.4
88Luis OrtizPIT24.2
Tier 7
89Jose BerriosTOR28.9
90Max MeyerMIA24.1
91Robert GasserMIL23.8
92Braxton GarrettMIA25.7
93Drey JamesonARI25.6
94Garrett WhitlockBOS26.8
95Kyle MullerOAK25.5
96Ryne NelsonARI25.2
97Eric LauerMIL27.8
98Cooper HjerpeSTL22.1
99Jarlin SusanaWAS19.0
100MacKenzie GoreWAS24.1
101Jameson TaillonCHC31.4
102Jon GrayTEX31.4
103David PetersonNYM27.6
104Mick AbelPHI21.6
105Brandon BarrieraTOR19.1
106Dylan LeskoSD19.6
107Frankie MontasNYY30.0
108Mitch KellerPIT27.0
109Clarke SchmidtNYY27.1
110Nathan EovaldiTEX33.1
111Connor PrielippMIN22.2
112Tanner HouckBOS26.8
113Michael KopechCHW26.9
114Andrew HeaneyTEX31.8
115Cade HortonCHC21.6
116Cade CavalliWAS24.6
117Justin SteeleCHC27.7
118Emmet SheehanLAD23.4
119Bryce MillerSEA24.6
120Chase SilsethLAA22.9
121Ken WaldichukOAK25.2
122Dax FultonMIA21.5
123Jake EderMIA24.5
124Ryan PepiotLAD25.6
125Kyle BradishBAL26.6
Tier 8
126Taijuan WalkerPHI30.6
127Jose UrquidyHOU27.9
128Wilmer FloresDET22.1
129Bryce ElderATL23.9
130Alex CobbSFG35.5
131Bubba ChandlerPIT20.6
132Keegan ThompsonCHC28.1
133Cal QuantrillCLE28.2
134Jacob MisiorowskiMIL21.0
135Landon SimsARI22.2
136Sean ManaeaSFG31.2
137Josiah GrayWAS25.3
138Casey MizeDET25.9
139Owen WhiteTEX23.7
140Ranger SuarezPHI27.6
141John MeansBAL30.0
142Freddy TarnokOAK24.4
143Nick NastriniLAD23.1
144Brock PorterTEX19.8
145Nick PivettaBOS30.1
146Matthew LiberatoreSTL23.4
147Martin PerezTEX32.0
148Bailey OberMIN27.7
149Charlie MortonATL39.5
150Noah SyndergaardLAD30.6
151Miles MikolasSTL34.6
152Mike BurrowsPIT23.4
153Landen RouppSF24.6
154Justin CampbellCLE22.1
155Jackson JobeDET20.7
156Zach EflinTBR29.0
157Ben BrownCHC23.6
158Quinn PriesterPIT22.6
159Tyler AndersonLAA33.3
160Merrill KellyARI34.5
161Mason MillerOAK24.6
162Reese OlsonDET23.7
163Darius VinesATL24.9
164Marcus StromanCHC31.9
165Carlos CarrascoNYM36.0
166Luis PatinoTBR23.4
167Cade PovichBAL23.0
168Gordon GraceffoSTL23.0
169Anthony SolometoPIT20.3
170Noah DenoyerBAL25.1
171Jack LeftwichCLE24.5
172Simeon Woods RichardsonMIN22.5
173Eduardo RodriguezDET30.0
174Jack LeiterTEX23.0
175Ian AndersonATL24.9

Got a beef with Tyler’s Dynasty Starting Pitcher Rankings? Let him know about it in the comments below. For more great analysis check out the 2023 FantraxHQ Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit!

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  1. Jim says

    Andrew Heaney feels very low in these rankings, given how effective he was in 2022 when healthy. Thoughts on him?

    1. Tyler Bowen says

      As of now it feels like more of a one-off season. It was a fairly small sample size (72.2 IP) and he had one of the worst hard-hit rates in baseball. I’d need to see him perform over a full season before I can buy in on the age-31 breakout year.

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