2020 Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep: Starting Pitcher Tiers, Version 2.0

Tiers are a simple but effective way of plotting out a draft strategy that assures you won’t fall behind at any position while maximizing your return on every pick. They serve an alternate form of rankings that groups players by expected level of production, denoting the points in the rankings where the most significant drop-offs occur. In the heat of a draft, you’ll know which position to target by observing which one is closest to having its current tier depleted.

Below are the starting pitcher tiers for 2020, depicting a position with depth to spare at the top levels that eventually runs out of usable options.

The Super Elite: Gerrit Cole, Jacob deGrom, Max Scherzer
The Elite: Walker Buehler, Shane Bieber, Jack Flaherty, Stephen Strasburg, Patrick Corbin, Lucas Giolito, Luis Castillo, Clayton Kershaw, Aaron Nola, Blake Snell, Zack Greinke, Charlie Morton
The Near-Elite: Mike Clevinger, Noah Syndergaard, Tyler Glasnow, Chris Paddack, Yu Darvish, Sonny Gray, Justin Verlander, Trevor Bauer, Brandon Woodruff, Mike Soroka, Jose Berrios, Corey Kluber, Frankie Montas, Lance Lynn
The Next-Best Things:  Carlos Carrasco*, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Zack Wheeler, Madison Bumgarner, Zac Gallen, Chris Sale, Shohei Ohtani, Jesus Luzardo*, Julio Urias*, Max Fried, Eduardo Rodriguez, Matthew Boyd, James Paxton
The Fallback Options: Kyle Hendricks, Mike Minor, David Price, Luke Weaver, German Marquez, Dinelson Lamet, Sean Manaea, Robbie Ray, Kenta Maeda*, Carlos Martinez*, Marcus Stroman, Dallas Keuchel, Lance McCullers, Masahiro Tanaka, Mike Foltynewicz
The Last Resorts:  Cole Hamels, Jake Odorizzi, Jon Gray, Miles Mikolas, Andrew Heaney, Mitch Keller, Josh James*, Adrian Houser*, Anthony DeSclafani, Joe Musgrove, Dylan Bundy, Alex Wood, Jose Urquidy, Dylan Cease, J.A. Happ, Michael Pineda, Garrett Richards, Matt Shoemaker, Ryan Yarbrough*, Domingo German, A.J. Puk*
The Deep-Leaguers:  Caleb Smith, Yonny Chirinos, Griffin Canning, Jordan Montgomery, Yusei Kikuchi, Michael Kopech, Brendan McKay, Forrest Whitley, Dakota Hudson, Sandy Alcantara, Kyle Gibson, Chris Archer, Jose Quintana, Steven Matz, Dustin May*, Joey Lucchesi, Brad Keller, Tanner Roark, Homer Bailey, Aaron Civale, Johnny Cueto, Jordan Lyles, Jake Junis, Pablo Lopez, Wade Miley, MacKenzie Gore, Nate Pearson, Casey Mize, Sean Newcomb*, Corbin Burnes*, Ross Stripling*
The Leftovers: Jon Lester, Julio Teheran, Reynaldo Lopez, Taijuan Walker, Justus Sheffield, Mike Fiers, Jeff Samardzija, Kevin Gausman*, Nathan Eovaldi*, Merrill Kelly, Ian Anderson, Matt Manning, Patrick Sandoval, Logan Webb, Rick Porcello, Jake Arrieta, Zach Eflin, Anibal Sanchez, Marco Gonzales, Chris Bassitt, John Means, Adam Wainwright

*: RP-eligible

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