Fantasy Baseball Two-Start Pitcher Streamers, Pickups: Week 12 (2022)

Several clubs have multiple days off over the coming week, limiting choices for two-launch streamers. Luckily, there are still a few good options in the lower leagues too.

As a reminder, each week, this non-fantasy baseball wire picks column identifies starting pitchers that are expected to make two starts in the upcoming fantasy baseball week, ahead of the Sunday night wire pick runs for leagues with weekly transactions.

This list is limited to players who are less than 50% ranked in Yahoo leagues and is divided into three sections based on recommendation levels: Solid Starters, Risky Streamers, and Must-Avoids.

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Solid two start pitcher streamers

George Kirby, Seattle Mariners – 51% on the list

Planned launches: vs. BAL, vs. OAK

Kirby, still just near the limit of our streamer recommendations, deserves a mention and really should be featured in all formats. He has conceded a total of seven earned runs in his last five starts, covering 29 innings. He lowered his season ERA to 3.12 with a 1.12 WHIP. It’s not like Kirby is sacrificing your strikeouts, either, with nearly a K per inning that’s in the 57th percentile.

Now that we’ve established that Kirby is more than just a streamer, here’s why he should definitely be launched for both rounds this week. The Orioles and A’s are 22nd and 29th in runs scored and strikeout with the fifth-highest and eighth-highest odds this season. Oakland has officially established itself as baseball’s worst offense, notching a total of seven runs in the past week. Kirby is a must see wherever he happens to be on the abandonment wire.

Keegan Thompson, Chicago Cubs – 38% on the list

Planned launches: vs. CIN, vs. BOS

Which Thompson are we getting this week? Whoever has gone six innings each of the last two starts with a 16-3 K-BB while hitting a run on six total? Or the one who attacked fantasy teams the last two times, giving up seven runs in three innings for the Orioles and not making it out of the first inning against the Yankees?

It seems he’s corrected his mistakes and gone back to what worked when he was out of the bullpen – relying primarily on his fastball. He tried adding more sinkers, but that only yielded poor results.

We should see the Thompson who looked dominant at times, especially when he faces Cincinnati for his first start in Week 12.

Ross Stripling, Toronto Blue Jays – 31% in list

Planned launches: vs. BOS, vs. TB

Since officially joining the rotation on June 6, Stripling has posted a 1.21 ERA and allowed 12 hits over 20 2/3 innings. The first two were a breeze against Detroit and KC, but his last two appearances have been with the White Sox and the Yankees. He should be able to handle the Red Sox well enough since they haven’t lit the scoreboard lately. He’s catching the Rays at a great time with their multiple injuries forcing up to four rookies on the starting lineup on Friday and likely at least three most days for the foreseeable future.

Devin Smeltzer, Minnesota Twins – 14% on the list

Planned launches: @CLE, vs. BAL

Smeltzer sports a 1.06 WHIP that ranks in the top-30 among starters with at least 30 IP and a 3.05 ERA. On the other hand, he far exceeds his 5.09 SIERA and has an anemic 12.6% K%. This is a game of wins and odds in cheap matchups, but not strikeouts. The schedule is working in its favor this week with two minor offenses in Cleveland and Baltimore.

He has already played against Cleveland twice this year with great success. His first start of 2022 on May 14 came against the Guardians when he limited them to a three-hit run over five innings. His last start was against Cleveland as well and he stifled them by again allowing just three hits over six scoreless innings. You may need to make up for the lack of Ks elsewhere, but Smeltzer looks like a great bet for delivering two solid outings.

Tyler Wells, Baltimore Orioles – 13% on the list

Planned launches: @SEA, @MIN

The discounted version of Smeltzer, but with a less favorable matchup, Wells has been solid for most of the season. His 3.34 ERA and 1.10 WHIP are more than playable, but he has a K-Rate in the ninth percentile. Still, Wells refuses to get off to a truly bad start, having not allowed more than three ERs in one outing since his very first appearance this year. There is a small risk in the fact that Wells’ upcoming starts are both on the road, where his 4.25 ERA is two runs higher than at home. They’re not intimidating matchups, though, so fantasy managers should feel comfortable rolling it out.

Risky two-start pitcher streamer picks

Zach Plesac, Cleveland Guardians – 37% on the list

Planned launches: vs MIN, vs NYY

Don’t look now, but Plesac was quietly one of June’s best starting pitchers. In fact, if we go back to May 30, he’s posted a 2.40 ERA, .219 BAA, and 22-4 K-BB in his last five starts. His season-wide stats aren’t impressive, but a couple of disastrous starts skewed those numbers quite a bit.

There’s a reason not to fully buy into Plesac this week – those damn Yankees. It’s a bad idea to stream a starter against the team that’s leading the majors in runs and home runs, including a league-high 12 HR in the past week. Plesac is a strong one-start streamer this week, but don’t tempt fate with start number two.

Chad Kuhl, Colorado Rockies – 18% on list

Planned launches: vs. LAD, vs. ARI

Both of Kuhl’s starts this week are at Coors Field and the first comes against the Dodgers. That’s enough to hold back a starter who’s made big strides since the jersey change this season. Kuhl was excellent on his first starts as a Rockie but has shown inconsistency since. A line drive rate of 31% is concerning, as is the fact that his strikeout rate is declining over the weeks. He may be viable later in the week when facing the Diamondbacks, whom he dominated earlier in the season, but should be avoided against the Dodgers if possible.

Jose Quintana, Pittsburgh Pirates – 11% on the list

Planned launches: @WAS, vs MIL

It looked like Quintana was regressing after two rocky starts in early June. Then he looked great the other day, throwing six solid innings, albeit against the hapless Cubs. Even then he failed to get a win and has one win in 14 attempts this season. Quintana should be a solid game against the Nats but poses a risk against a hot Brewers offense.

Jonathan Heasley – 3% on the roster

Planned launches: vs TEX, @DET

I was initially tempted to put Heasley in the solid category when I saw Texas and Detroit on the board. However, it wasn’t exactly easy to trust him. He comes into the week with an ERA of 4.14 but has a SIERA of 5.21 and a BB% of 12.2%.

Heasley has blitzed at times, including a streak of three straight starts culminating with seven goalless frames against Baltimore. He doesn’t avoid hard contact nearly enough to be a trustworthy streamer because the longball can always give him away.

Erick Fedde, Washington Nationals – 3% on list

Planned launches: vs. PIT, vs. MIA

On this week’s episode of the Beat the Shift podcast with Ariel Cohen and Reuven Guy, I was surprised to hear optimism about Fedde. I understand the schedule doesn’t get much better than the Pirates and Marlins on tap, but Fedde hasn’t done much to inspire confidence. Even if we ignore his season-long 1.47 WHIP and 18.4% K%, his recent “heavy stretch” since his last implosion is a streak of three starts, where he posted a 4.15 ERA and a 13-9 K- owns BB rate. Those in deep leagues who want a shot at a win or two can try Fedde, but the benefit is minimal.

Stay away from those two-start pitchers

Josh Fleming, Tampa Bay Rays – 0% on list

Planned launches: vs. MIL, @TOR

Fleming was sent to the minors after pitching to 18 1/3 IP to 6.38 ERA and 1.96 WHIP. He is slated to face two hot offenses in Milwaukee and Toronto. When you consider that this is a pitcher with a career strikeout rate below 16% who has endured a similarly disappointing 2021 season, leaving him alone in his imagination needs little justification.

Tyler Beede, Pittsburgh Pirates – 0% in list

Planned launches: @WAS, vs MIL

It’s a speculative pick as ESPN’s pitching forecaster lists Jerad Eickhoff as a two-start pitcher next week. However, he was (unsurprisingly) designated for action yesterday.

In the most successful season of Eickhoff’s MLB career, he held a 3.65 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. With 14 defeats and 30 HR allowed, he was also one of the “leaders” in the league. It’s a small pick, but Eickhoff got back on track after his first appearance in 2022 after giving up two homers and taking the loss to Chicago the other day while giving up 10 runs!

Beede was a former first-round pick and starter at San Francisco but has barely pitched since 2019 since undergoing Tommy John surgery and suffering a back injury. It can serve as an opener and as such should be ignored.

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