Continuing on from my hitter series of prospects to know and target, pitching prospects are becoming an even larger and larger part of our game, despite the incredibly young ages of the pitchers coming up, anyone who invested in Chris Paddack or Mike Soroka profited tremendously off those gambles, the idea here is to spotlight some of those arms and which ones to potentially avoid. Unlike the bats, I have tiered this pitchers in terms of which to target. Feel free to hit me with a follow on Twitter @bieryplox33 for more fantasy baseball content or if you have any questions!

The Potential SP3’s (On A Per Inning Basis):

Jesus Luzardo (February-March NFBC ADP 123) –

Luzardo is easily the most expensive rookie arm on the market, and not necessarily the best investment, even though he’s clearly one of the most talented pitching prospects we have seen in a while. Workload concerns and price drive me away from Luzardo.

ETA: Opening Day Lineup

Projection: 137.2 IP, 3.59 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 141 K’s

Julio Urias (February-March NFBC ADP 154) –

Urias is like a slightly cheaper Luzardo, as both lefties have ridiculously nasty stuff, surefire rotation spots and the upside to be an SP3 on your team. The only real concern is if the Dodgers decide to use Urias for 3-4 innings simply to ensure that he isn’t overused and is fresh for October. I really like this price, and would take him in at this ADP, unlike Luzardo.

ETA: Opening Day Lineup

Projection: 131.2 IP, 3.51 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 146 K’s

AJ Puk (February-March NFBC ADP 237) –

*UPDATE, Puk was diagnosed with a mild shoulder strain on 3/3, monitor his situation before your drafts*

Puk is a 6 foot 7 lefty behemoth who possesses two 70 grade pitches, his slider and his fastball. Control/command maybe a problem for Puk early, but he could also take off out of the gates better than Luzardo. I expect anywhere between 120-140 IP with a boatload of K’s, really like this value here given his guaranteed rotation spot.

ETA: Opening Day Lineup

Projection: 126 IP, 3.86 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 139 K’s

Jose Urquidy (February-March NFBC ADP 220) –

A short 5 foot 9 control maestro, Urquidy has hit a new level with his new found velocity following his TJ surgery, as he now averages 94 MPH, while occasionally touching 97. More than enough stuff with a guy who possesses his command. An apparent rotation spot really helps Urquidy’s stock as well, as he should be locked into the rotation for a great team.

ETA: Opening Day Lineup

Projection: 157 IP, 3.69 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 151 K’s

Steady Skills, Unsteady Role

Brendan McKay (February-March NFBC ADP 294) –

Look no further than McKay’s Triple A numbers at his upside/dominance potential(sub 1 ERA/WHIP over 32 frames), McKay is a very cerebral pitcher who should receive opportunity to shine in Tampa in 2020, whether it’s as a starter, a reliever or something in between is where things get a little tricky. I buy the talent, and believe that Tampa will utilize him at least as a follower, if not as a traditional starter.

ETA: Opening Day Lineup

Projection: 141 IP, 3.69 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 139 K’s

Dustin May (February-March NFBC ADP 252) –

The long haired red-headed flamethrower Gingergaard has all the skills you could want, but unfortunately he has limited opportunity on the absolutely stacked Dodgers. He will get innings at the Major League level, but he may have to wait on the farm until that happens given LA’s SP depth. I like the skills, but don’t like the situation a lot. Add in a current side injury, and non-electric swing and miss stuff (better real life arm than fantasy arm), I will have to pass on May.

ETA: Early June (or as soon as Alex Wood breaks down)

Projection: 79 IP, 3.66 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 69 K’s

MacKenzie Gore (February-March NFBC ADP 296) –

In terms of Future Value, Gore has a great shot at being the top pitcher on this list in 5 years, but I don’t buy him for 2020 redraft leagues, as he has only pitched 21.2 innings above High A and didn’t exactly dominate Double A, posting a 4.15 ERA/1.32 WHIP combo. I could easily see SD leaving him in the minors to continue development for a large portion of the season, I wouldn’t pay up for this potential long term stash, despite the fact he is a premium talent.

ETA: August

Projection: 52 IP, 3.42 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 59 K’s

Michael Kopech (February-March NFBC ADP 290) –

Kopech is a classic TJ recovery guy with electric stuff, but role/workload questions. When he’s available, you will want him for the K upside, but predicting his innings or ETA is quite difficult. I like his stuff quite a bit and the Sox are motivated to get his workload elevated and use his innings on a playoff hopeful team. I’m buying Kopech stock.

ETA: May

Projection: 123 IP, 3.66 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 136 K’s

Spencer Howard (February-March NFBC ADP 542) –

Howard is a nice late dart, as the Phillies really need more help in the starting rotation and Howard is basically ready to go at the MLB level. As a last pick in your drafts, I do like Howard as a stash given Philly’s desire to win now and Howard’s demonstrated ability to dominate opposing batters.

ETA: June

Projection: 76 IP, 3.56 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 81 K’s

Watch List Guys

Forrest Whitely (February-March NFBC ADP 365) –

Whitely has absolutely electric stuff and will be a great player to roster when he is in Houston, but it’s tough to say when exactly he will arrive. Investors may hold onto him all summer, being tempted to cut him for the next version of Lance Lynn or Lucas Giolito, but if you have patience, Whitely could be worth the wait.

ETA: June

Projection: 55 IP, 3.89 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 59 K’s

Nate Pearson (February-March NFBC ADP 442) –

Pearson has an incredible ceiling and I like his chances to succeed when Toronto brings him up, as he can touch 100+ MPH, and the guy throws absolute bullets down his opponents throat. Similar to Howard, he has immense upside late in drafts as a cheap dart or a watch list guy. 

ETA: June

Projection: 92 IP, 3.75 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 101 K’s

Casey Mize/Matt Manning (Feb-March NFBC ADP 551/587 respectively) –

A pair of uber talented Tigers arms, both should see MLB opportunity come mid-summer, but I wouldn’t want to roster them all season, as Detroit has little incentive to rush them to the big leagues. Both players are tremendous buys in a dynasty format.

ETA: Both come up in August for a handful of starts