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Wolf's Big Board:     Monday, May 29, 2017     Tier One - The Big Three   1 ) David Johnson (ARI) RB1   2 ) Le'Veon Bell (PIT) RB2   3 ) Ezekiel Elliott (DAL) RB3   Tier Two - High-end WR1 and RB1s   4 ) Antonio Brown (PIT) WR1   5 ) Julio Jones (ATL) WR2   6 ) Mike Evans (TB) WR3   7 ) Odell Beckham JR. (NYG) WR4   8 ) DeMarco Murray (TEN) RB4   9 ) Melvin Gordon (LAC) RB5   10 ) LeSean McCoy (BUF) RB6   11 ) Jay Ajayi (MIA) RB7   12 ) AJ Green (CIN) WR5   13 ) Jordy Nelson (GB) WR6   14 ) Michael Thomas (NO) WR7   15 ) Dez Bryant (DAL) WR8   16 ) Devonta Freeman (ATL) RB8   Tier 3 - Lower-end RB1 and WR1s, elite second options   17 ) Lamar Miller (HOU) RB9   18 ) DeAndre Hopkins (HOU) WR9   19 ) TY Hilton (IND) WR10   20 ) Leonard Fournette (JAX) RB10   21 ) Rob Gronkowski (NE) TE1   22 ) Brandin Cooks (NE) WR11   23 ) Demaryius Thomas. (DEN) WR12   24 ) Jordan Reed (WAS) TE2   25 ) Doug Baldwin (SEA) WR13   26 ) Amari Cooper (OAK) WR14   Tier 3.5   27 ) Todd Gurley (LAR) RB11   28 ) Carlos Hyde (SF) RB12   29 ) Christian McCaffrey (CAR) RB13   30 ) Jordan Howard (CHI) RB14   31 ) Marshawn Lynch (OAK) RB15   32 ) Davante Adams (GB) WR15   33 ) Alshon Jeffery (PHI) WR16   34 ) Isaiah Crowell (CLE) RB16   35 ) Tyreek Hill (KC) WR17   36 ) Keenan Allen (LAC) WR18   37 ) Spencer Ware (KC) RB17   Tier 4 - Elite QBs, Solid #2 RBs + WRs, side TE1s   38 ) Bilal Powell (NYJ) RB18   39 ) Tom Brady (NE) QB1   40 ) Sammy Watkins WR19   41 ) Aaron Rodgers (GB) QB2   42 ) Travis Kielce (KC) TE3   43 ) Terrelle Pryor (WAS) WR20   44 ) Allen Robinson (JAC) WR21   44 ) Mike Gillislee (NE) RB19   45 ) Mark Ingram (NO) RB20   46 ) Golden Tate (DET) WR22   47 ) Jamison Crowder (WAS) WR23   48 ) Greg Olsen (CAR) TE4   48 ) Tevin Coleman (ATL) RB21   49 ) Willie Snead (NO) WR24   50 ) Doug Martin (TB) RB22   51 ) Michael Crabtree (OAK) WR25   52 ) Brandon Marshal (NYG) WR26   53 ) Julian Edelman (NE) WR27   54 ) Donte Moncrief (IND) WR28   55 ) Drew Brees (NO) QB3   56 ) Ameer Abdullah (DET) RB23   57 ) Jimmy Graham (SEA) TE5   58 ) Tyler Eifert (CIN) TE6   59 ) Martavis Bryant (PIT) WR29   Tier 5 - Last Startable WRs and RBs + TE1 Candidates   60 ) Pierre Garcon (SF) WR30   61 ) Eric Decker (NYJ) WR31   62 ) Jarvis Landry (MIA) WR32   63 ) Larry Fitzgerald (ARI) WR33   64 ) Samaje Perine (WAS) RB24   65 ) Joe Mixon (CIN) RB25   66 ) CJ Anderson (DEN) RB26   67 ) Matt Ryan (ATL) QB4   68 ) Stefon Diggs (MIN) WR33   69 ) Emmanuel Sanders (DEN) WR34   70 ) Ty Montgomery (GB) RB27   71 ) Hunter Henry (LAC) TE7   72 ) Corey Davis (TEN) WR35   73 ) Adrian Peterson (NO) RB28   74 ) Kelvin Benjamin (CAR) WR36   75 ) Delanie Walker TE8   76 ) Paul Perkins (NYG) RB29   77 ) CJ Prosise (SEA) RB30   78 ) Eddie Lacy (SEA) RB31   79 ) Dalvin Cook (MIN) RB32   80 ) Theo Riddick (DET) RB33   81 ) Frank Gore (IND) RB34   82 ) Cameron Meredith (CHI) WR38   83 ) Mike Wallace (BAL) WR39   84 ) DeSean Jackson (TB) WR40   85 ) Martellus Bennett (GB) TE9   TIer 7 - side QB1s and Top WR and RB Lottery Tickets   86 ) Andrew Luck (IND) QB5   87 ) Derek Carr (OAK) QB6   88 ) Kirk Cousins (WAS) QB7   89 ) Marcus Mariota (TEN) QB8   90 ) Philip Rivers (LAC) QB9   91 ) Ben Roethlisberger QB10   92 ) Dak Prescott (DAL) QB11   93 ) Jameis Winston (TB) QB12   94 ) Joe Williams (SF) RB35   95 ) Derrick Henry (TEN) RB36   96 ) Kareem Hunt (KC) RB37   97 ) Jamaal Williams (GB) RB38   98 ) Davante Parker (MIA) WR41   99 ) Josh Doctson (WAS) WR42   100 ) Ted Ginn (NO) WR43  
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Fantasy Baseball 2017: Two Start Pitchers 4/10-4/16

Welcome to Week 2 of breaking down the two start pitchers for the upcoming week. Not only does knowing which pitchers have two starts give you an advantage against your opposition; seeing the matchups and where they lie in these rankings also gives you a head start on planning your waiver pickups for the upcoming week. I know some leagues cap the amount of pickups in a week (I have a 6 pickup max, and transaction are processed only Monday and Friday), so sometimes it can help to target one highly rated two starters rather than using two separate claims on two different pitchers. And boy do we have a lot of middling, yet interesting, options this week. As usual, I will try my best to be on top of the changing rotations.

Never a Doubt

  1. Chris Sale, BOS (@DET, vs. TB)
  2. Jake Arrieta, CHC (vs. LAD, vs. PIT)
  3. Carlos Carrasco, CLE (vs. CWS, vs. DET)
  4. Jacob deGrom, NYM (@PHI, @MIA)

As if there was ever any doubt, Chris Sale electrified the MLB universe in his first start as a member of the Boston Red Sox (especially us Red Sox diehards) and has officially put every team, player, hitter, manager, concession stand operator and related persons on notice: he is big, he is bad, he is dominant and he has a one-two 97 MPH fastball and a vertigo-inducing slider combination to give hitters nightmares. Carlos Carrasco in this top tier may shock you, but two home matchups against Not-So-Big-Game James Shields and Matt Boyd makes me salivate.

Borderline Aces

  1. Cole Hamels, TEX (@LAA, @SEA)
  2. Justin Verlander, DET (vs. BOS, @CLE)
  3. Tanner Roark (vs. STL, vs. PHI)
  4. Matt Harvey, NYM (@PHI, @MIA)
  5. Ian Kennedy, MIN (vs. OAK, vs. LAA)

Ian Kennedy!??!?! Are you serious, that guy stinks! Granted his first start was not what dreams are made of, but he still did strike out 5 and he uncharacteristically walked 5. Expect him to command the zone better at home in two dream matchups against a pair of the weaker offenses in the game. Tanner Roark, likewise, occupies his home field in Nationals Park for two games against a scuffling Cardinals offense and the always abysmal Phillies offense.

Very Good

  1. James Paxton, SEA (vs. HOU, vs. TEX)
  2. Rich Hill, LAD (@CHC, vs. ARI)
  3. Hector Santiago, MIN (vs. CWS, @DET)
  4. J.A. Happ, TOR (vs. MIL, vs. BAL)
  5. Dan Straily, MIA (vs. ATL, vs. NYM)
  6. Jameson Taillon, PIT (vs. CIN, @CHC)
  7. Garrett Richards, LAA (vs. TEX, @KC)

My first bold prediction talked about James Paxton finishing in the top 20 this year as a starter, and boy did he impress. He allowed 0 runs in the Houston launching pad, striking out 5 and walking only 1. Yes, he did not get the win as the bridge to Edwin Diaz crumbled faster than the Bridge on the River Kwai (oldie, but a goodie), but he performed well and that usually great bullpen will find its way as the season progresses. Hector Santiago and Dan Straily are two odd names to have in this Very Good section as, admittedly, neither of them are very good. HOWEVAH, I am a big matchups guy (which you could probably surmise) and Straily had a more than serviceable 2016 campaign and has two solid home battles lined up. Santiago, on the other hand, comes off an impressive performance against Kansas City to face the exact same duo as Carlos Carrasco, only in the inverse order. The universe is telling us something here: Take Carrasco and Santiago and stay farrrrrrr away from Shields and Boyd.

Some Upside Here

  1. Michael Pineda (vs. TB, vs. STL)
  2. Adam Wainwright, STL (@WSH, @NYY)
  3. Brandon Finnegan, CIN (@PIT, vs. MIL)
  4. Matt Moore, SF (vs. ARI, vs. COL)
  5. Tyler Chatwood, COL (vs. SD, @SF)
  6. Jeff Samardzija, SF (vs. ARI, vs. COL)
  7. Jared Eickhoff, PHI (vs. NYM, @WSH)
  8. Dylan Bundy, BAL (@BOS, @TOR)
  9. Taijuan Walker, ARI (@SF, @LAD)
  10. Jharel Cotton, OAK (@KC, vs. HOU)
  11. Alex Cobb, TB (@NYY, @BOS)
  12. Charlie Morton, HOU (@SEA, @OAK)

Holy moly what a list! The fact is, a lot of these pitchers are either (i) good with not great matchups or (ii) decent with good matchups. Let us start with bullet (i) first. I have already outlined my love for and thoughts regarding Adam Wainwright’s career resurgence this year and he had a solid first outing against the loaded Cubs offense, striking out six and allowing only 3 hits. Dylan Bundy has been everyone’s favorite pitching prospect for what feels like 10 years and he absolutely dazzled at home against Toronto. But two road starts in Fenway and then this time in Toronto sheds a rather ominous light. Onto bullet (ii). Michael Pineda has two home matchups against light-hitting offenses…but I thought he would be good this past week in Tampa, and that turned out very poorly. Brandon Finnegan strong armed the Phillies with 9 Ks and only one BB, allowing only one over 7. He has the most upside in this group and could slowly creep up in the pitcher ranks if he keeps his walks to a minimum.

Cross Your Fingers and Pray

  1. James Shields, CWS (@CLE, @MIN)

Rather short list here…Well, if you really want to learn more about my opinion of James Shields I would just re-read some of the above paragraphs.

Please No

  1. Matt Boyd, DET (vs. MIN, @CLE)
  2. Trevor Cahill, SD (@COL, @ATL)
  3. Antonio Senzatela, COL (vs. SD, @SF)
  4. Rookie Davis, CIN (@PIT, vs. MIL)
  5. Wily Peralta, MIL (@TOR, @CIN)

I have beaten up on poor Matt Boyd enough, so I will pass on a third opportunity. Rookie Davis could wind up as a decent play given the matchups, but the lack of evidence to support the claim he will linger in this section until proven otherwise.

Come back to Roto Street Journal every Friday to see the two start ranks and how to best build your rotation for success. Good luck navigating the week, and happy streaming!

To contact me with any questions or general fantasy baseball discussion, please email me at or tweet me @AJGamballer.

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