Fantasy Baseball: Week 5 Two-Start Pitchers

(Josie Lepe/Bay Area News Group)

With the 2016 baseball season in full swing I look forward to Week 5 and most importantly, two-start pitcher options. This week’s two-start list isn’t loaded with aces like most weeks but it is top-heavy. Jake Arrieta tops the list this week and his dominance in the second half of last year has carried over to the start of the 2016 season. He has pitched at least seven innings in four of his first five starts and holds a 32/10 K/BB ratio in 32 innings pitched. Arrieta is locked in having allowed a grand total of  four earned runs while registering a win in each of his starts.

Johnny Cueto appears to have found his mojo in San Francisco which is good news for his owners. He has tossed a quality start in four out of his five starts while going at least seven innings every time he took the hill. I’m expecting big things after his 11K complete-game shutout last week versus the San Diego Padres. Cueto will enjoy a homecoming in Cincinnati before closing the week out at home in the Bay versus the Rockies. The change of scenery to San Francisco and move back to the National League has been a boom to his value and could have him knocking on the door of becoming a top 10 SP.

My top-tier of two-start pitchers this week includes 10 pitchers.  Coming in at No. 3 is one of the more polarizing players in baseball, New York Mets ace Matt Harvey. To be fair he has been mediocre at best in the early going but I have a feeling that he’s just getting warmed up. Harvey hasn’t been missing as many bats which is my main issue but is coming off his best start of the season tossing six innings of one-run ball while whiffing a season-high seven Reds’ hitters. A date at home versus the light-hitting Atlanta Braves should allow Harvey to build off last week’s start.

Another struggling ace toes the rubber twice this week in reining AL Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel. I’m not ready to give up on one of last year’s breakout arms and you shouldn’t either! It’s worth noting that he has pitched much better at home this year. My recommendation is to stay the course with him and don’t overreact to a few recent bad starts on this road. This week Keuchel makes his two starts at Minute Maid Park versus the Minnesota Twins and Seattle Mariners. I’m betting on a big bounce back this week and provides elite ratio’s across the board while picking up a couple of wins.

Can Dallas  Keuchel return to his former Cy  Young form in Week 5? (Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

Can Dallas Keuchel return to his former Cy Young form in Week 5? (Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

One of the most underrated pitchers in baseball in Jose Quintana but he’s finally starting to get some respect. Quintana has tossed a quality start in four out of his five starts this year and boast a 32/8 K/BB ratio over 30.2 innings. The most surprising thing to me is how effective he has been while facing some very tough lineups. Quintana picked up his third win of the season last week on the road in Toronto in a tough environment while facing a loaded Blue Jays lineup. He allowed only four hits while punching out 10 Blue Jays’ in the process. Quintana looks to keep up his hot streak this week at U.S. Cellular Field versus the Red Sox and Twins.

Jose  Quintana has quietly been on of the best pitchers in the AL this year. (Paul Sancya/AP)

Jose Quintana has quietly been on of the best pitchers in the AL this year. (Paul Sancya/AP)

Patrick Corbin has been tough to trust in the early going allowing at least four runs in three of his five starts this year. It’s pretty simple Corbin has been victimized by the home run ball allowing seven  dingers in only 31.1 innings. After digging a little deeper I noticed that six of those seven home runs came in two starts versus the Pirates and Rockies. Also consider that he’s logged both of his quality starts on the road. I’m optimistic Corbin will keep that trend going with plus matchups in Miami and Atlanta. When the smoke clears in Week 5 Corbin could find himself among leaders in all pitching categories for the week.

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One of the biggest early surprises of 2016 baseball season has been the unbelievable comeback of Rays southpaw Matt Moore. I was all over Matt Moore on our pre-season 60 Feet 6 Inches Fantasy Baseball podcast and I hope you took my advice and drafted him late. Moore has tossed quality starts in three out of his five starts while punching out 35 hitters over 32 innings. Moore has enjoyed a resurgence after regaining some velocity while displaying plus control with only seven walks allowed this season. I expect Moore to continue to put up stellar numbers across the board while increasing his value in the process. Considering that Moore went undrafted in a number of leagues his lucky owners have to be doing backflips. I might even be a little lower on him this week then I should be considering that resident roto expert Ben Rolfe endorsed Moore as his favorite two-start pitcher of the week on our latest podcast. Be sure to listen to the latest FakePigskin 60 Feet 6 Inches podcast for more in-depth analysis of our staff’s recommended two-start and streaming options. Also be sure to check out all the great fantasy baseball content at FakePigskin.com including Ben Rolfe’s weekly waiver wire article in addition to Damian Dabrowski’s reliever roulette and streaming articles.

TWO-START PITCHERS Ron’s Rankings
PLAYER START #1 START #2
Jake Arrieta CHC
(05/03) (05/08) 1
@ PIT vs. WAS
Jonathon Niese Tanner Roark
Johnny Cueto SF
(05/02) (05/07) 2
@ CIN vs. COL
Brandon Finnegan TBA
Matt Harvey NYM (05/03) (05/08) 3
vs. ATL @ SD
Jhoulys Chacin Andrew Cashner
Dallas Keuchel HOU
(05/02) (05/07) 4
vs. MIN vs. SEA
Jose Berrios Nathan Karns
(05/02) (05/08) 5
vs. CHC @ STL
Kyle Hendricks Michael Wacha
Jose Quintana CHW
(05/03) (05/08) 6
vs. BOS vs. MIN
Steven Wright Jose Berrios
Michael Wacha STL
(05/03) (05/08) 7
vs. PHI vs. PIT
Aaron Nola Gerrit Cole
Patrick Corbin ARI
(05/03) (05/08) 8
@ MIA @ ATL
Justin Nicolino TBA
Aaron Nola PHI
(05/03) (05/08) 9
@ STL @ MIA
Michael Wacha Justin Nicolino
James Shields SD (05/02) (05/07) 10
vs. COL vs. NYM
TBA Bartolo Colon
(05/02) (05/07) 11
vs. LAA @ CIN
Jered Weaver Brandon Finnegan
Matt Moore TB
(05/03) (05/08) 12
vs. LAD @ LAA
Scott Kazmir Jered Weaver
Kyle Hendricks CHC
(05/02) (05/07) 13
@ PIT vs. WAS
Gerrit Cole Gio Gonzalez
Andrew Cashner SD
(05/03) (05/08) 14
vs. COL vs. NYM
Jon Gray Matt Harvey
Nathan Karns SEA
(05/02) (05/07) 15
@ OAK @ HOU
Rich Hill Dallas Keuchel
(05/02) (05/08) 16
vs. WAS @ CLE
Gio Gonzalez Josh Tomlin
Collin McHugh HOU (05/03) (05/08) 17
vs. MIN vs. SEA
Alex Meyer Hisashi Iwakuma
(05/03) (05/08) 18
vs. NYY vs. OAK
Luis Severino Rich Hill
Gio Gonzalez WAS (05/02) (05/07) 19
@ KC @ CHC
Edinson Volquez Kyle Hendricks
(05/03) (05/08) 20
@ CLE vs. TEX
Josh Tomlin Martin Perez
(05/03) (05/08) 21
@ CIN vs. COL
Jon Moscot Jon Gray
(05/02) (05/07) 22
vs. PHI vs. PIT
Jeremy Hellickson Jeff Locke
(05/03) (05/08) 23
vs. TEX vs. LAD
Martin Perez Clayton Kershaw
Hisashi Iwakuma SEA
(05/03) (05/08) 24
@ OAK @ HOU
Sonny Gray Collin McHugh
Jose Berrios MIN
(05/02) (05/08) 25
@ HOU @ CHW
Dallas Keuchel Jose Quintana
Tanner Roark WAS
(05/03) (05/08) 26
@ KC @ CHC
Chris Young Jake Arrieta
Luis Severino NYY
(05/03) (05/08) 26
@ BAL vs. BOS
Chris Tillman Steven Wright
Bartolo Colon NYM
(05/02) (05/07) 27
vs. ATL @ SD
TBA James Shields
Rich Hill OAK
(05/02) (05/08) 28
vs. SEA @ BAL
Nathan Karns Chris Tillman
Brandon Finnegan CIN
(05/02) (05/07) 29
vs. SF vs. MIL
Johnny Cueto Jimmy Nelson
Steven Wright BOS
(05/03) (05/08) 30
@ CHW @ NYY
Jose Quintana Luis Severino
Jared Weaver LAA
(05/02) (05/08) 31
@ MIL vs. TB
Jimmy Nelson Matt Moore
(05/02) (05/07) 32
vs. TEX vs. LAD
A.J. Griffin Ross Stripling
Jon Gray COL
(05/03) (05/08) 33
@ SD @ SF
Andrew Cashner Jeff Samardzija
Justin Nicolino MIA
(05/03) (05/08) 34
vs. ARI vs. PHI
Patrick Corbin Aaron Nola
Josh Tomlin CLE
(05/03) (05/08) 35
vs. DET vs. KC
Justin Verlander Edinson Volquez
Jeremy Hellickson PHI
(05/02) (05/07) 36
@ STL @ MIA
Adam Wainwright Tom Koehler
Martin Perez TEX
(05/03) (05/08) 37
@ TOR @ DET
Marco Estrada Justin Verlander
A.J. Griffin TEX
(05/02) (05/07) 38
@ TOR @ DET
R.A. Dickey Mike Pelfrey
(05/03) (05/08) 39
vs. LAA @ CIN
Nick Tropeano Jon Moscot
Jon Moscot CIN
(05/03) (05/08) 40
vs. SF vs. MIL
Jeff Samardzija Taylor Jungmann

Low-owned Two-Start Options

Nathan Karns: @ OAK, @ HOU (10% Yahoo, 24.3% ESPN)

Chris Tillman: vs. NYY, vs. OAK (24% Yahoo, 20.3% ESPN)

Andrew Cashner: vs. COL, vs. NYM (33% Yahoo, 10.9% ESPN)

Jose Berrios: @ HOU, @ CHW (60% Yahoo, 37.8% ESPN)

Steven Wright: @ CHW, @ NYY (29% Yahoo, 21.9% ESPN) 

Jon Gray: @ SD, @ SF (3% Yahoo, 4% ESPN)

For more help winning your fantasy baseball league check out Fake Pigskin’s 60 Feet 6 Inches podcast on iTunes and Stitcher

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