Rank

First Name

Last Name

Team

1 Clayton Kershaw LAD
2 Felix Hernandez Sea
3 Chris Sale CWS
4 Max Scherzer Was
5 Madison Bumgarner SF
6 Corey Kluber Cle
7 David Price Det
8 Stephen Strasburg Was
9 Zack Greinke LAD
10 Carlos Carrasco Cle
11 Jake Arrieta ChC
12 Matt Harvey NYM
13 Cole Hamels Phi
14 Johnny Cueto Cin
15 Gerrit Cole Pit
16 Jordan Zimmermann Was
17 Alexander Cobb TB
18 Julio Teheran Atl
19 Adam Wainwright StL
20 Jon Lester ChC
21 Garrett Richards LAA
22 Masahiro Tanaka NYY
23 Hisashi Iwakuma Sea
24 Jeff Samardzija CWS
25 James Shields SD
26 Gio Gonzalez Was
27 Tyson Ross SD
28 Jacob DeGrom NYM
29 Hyun-Jin Ryu LAD
30 Alex Wood Atl
31 Homer Bailey Cin
32 Matt Shoemaker LAA
33 Collin McHugh Hou
34 Dallas Keuchel Hou
35 Michael Wacha StL
36 Danny Salazar Cle
37 Scott Kazmir Oak
38 Sonny Gray Oak
39 Lance Lynn StL
40 Derek Holland Tex
41 Yordano Ventura KC
42 Chris Archer TB
43 Jose Fernandez Mia
44 Phil Hughes Min
45 Drew Smyly TB
46 Ian Kennedy SD
47 Anibal Sanchez Det
48 Jesse Hahn Oak
49 Carlos Martinez StL
50 A.J. Burnett Pit
51 Michael Pineda NYY
52 Andrew Cashner SD
53 Ervin Santana Min
54 John Lackey StL
55 R.A. Dickey Tor
56 Matt Garza Mil
57 Jason Hammel ChC
58 Kevin Gausman Bal
59 Matt Cain SF
60 Francisco Liriano Pit
61 Jose Quintana CWS
62 Doug Fister Was
63 Justin Verlander Det
64 Wily Peralta Mil
65 James Paxton Sea
66 Trevor Bauer Cle
67 Taijuan Walker Sea
68 Jake Odorizzi TB
69 Kyle Lohse Mil
70 Jered Weaver LAA
71 Mat Latos Mia
72 Michael Fiers Mil
73 Tim Hudson SF
74 Jake Peavy SF
75 Brandon McCarthy LAD
76 Wade Miley Bos
77 Shelby Miller Atl
78 Mike Leake Cin
79 T.J. House Cle
80 Rick Porcello Bos
81 Andrew Heaney LAA
82 Jonathon Niese NYM
83 Henderson Alvarez Mia
84 Kyle Gibson Min
85 Nathan Eovaldi NYY
86 Justin Masterson Bos
87 Yovani Gallardo Tex
88 Allen Webster Ari
89 Jimmy Nelson Mil
90 Jason Vargas KC
91 Yusmeiro Petit SF
92 Kyle Hendricks ChC
93 CC Sabathia NYY
94 Danny Duffy KC
95 Dan Haren Mia
96 Wei-Yin Chen Bal
97 Drew Hutchison Tor
98 Shane Greene Det
99 Jenrry Mejia NYM
100 Brandon Maurer SD

Notable Higher Ranked Players

Carlos Carrasco: My Rank- 10 ECR- 27

As a starting pitcher last year Carlos Carrasco totaled a 2.67 ERA (2.21 FIP) with 20 walks and 101 strikeouts and a 0.98 WHIP in 91.0 innings pitched. He's an ace. Those are SP1 numbers and are supported by filthy stuff. Forget his short track record, that's likely why he's ranked as low as he is by other experts. Carrasco is the real deal.

Matt Shoemaker: My Rank- 32 ECR- 53

Matt Shoemaker caught gamers by surprise last year. He was never a highly touted prospect, yet you'd never know that by his numbers. His 3.04 ERA might have been a little lucky, but his 3.26 FIP indicates it wasn't too lucky. Shoemaker 18.4% K-BB ranked 19th among pitchers who threw at least 120 innings last year. Armed with a 10.7% swinging strike rate (9.4% league average), I'm buying what he's selling.

Derek Holland: My Rank- 40 ECR- 76

Derek Holland was able to pitch in just six games last year (five starts). His 1.46 ERA was flukey, and his 2.19 FIP was aided by zero homers allowed. Having gotten the negatives out of the way, let's move to the positives. His 3.5% BB was superb and his 17.2% K was low for a guy who tallied a 10.1% swinging strike rate. In his last full season, 2013, Holland had a 21.1% K. That's a mark he's more than capable of reaching. He doesn't have to carryover all of his control gains this year to justify my ranking when his strikeout rate inevitably goes up.

Notable Lower Ranked Players

Sonny Gray: My Rank- 38 ECR- 23

I like Sonny Gray, but he's not an SP2. A mid-3.00s ERA this year is more likely than a repeat of his 3.08 ERA from last season. His walk rate was a little worse than league average and his strikeout rate was dead on with the league average. Gray's BABIP in his first year plus in the league appears to be a little on the lucky side, and if his swinging strike percentage is a good indicator, he could give some strikeouts back.

Jose Quintana: My Rank- 61 ECR- 47

I'll buy Jose Quintana's improved walk rate last year. It was the second year he improved his walk rate. I'm not buying his new found penchant for striking batters out. His 21.5% K was nearly two ticks better than his 19.7% K in 2013. The problem is, his swinging strike rate dropped from 8.8% in 2013 to 8.3% last year. Something doesn't add up. The 2013 version of Quintana looks like a more realistic projection for this year than the 2014 version.

Doug Fister: My Rank- 62 ECR- 37

Doug Fister is walking a tight rope, yet my peers don't seem to be concerned. His strikeout rate dipped under 15% (14.8% to be exact). Yes, it coincided with an improved walk rate to a dental floss thin 3.6%, but relying on your fielders to record such a high percentage of your outs is a dicey proposition. Without punch outs Fister is reliant on wins (which are fickle even on the best teams) and exceptional rate stats (ERA and WHIP) to justify cracking the top 40 starting pitchers. I just don't see it.