MLB’s best starting rotation: Yankees, Mets top contenders

Multiple Cy Young Award winners switched teams in a wild offseason. But when it comes to the best rotations, the top teams are very well known in 2023.

When we asked FOX Sports’ MLB writers to pick their five favorite starting lineups, we got mixed reactions. Interestingly, he, who has the lowest ERA in 2022, chose neither of the two clubs (Dodgers and Astros).

Here are four cases of the best pitching rotations in baseball.

Atlanta Braves

Let’s be honest, the most recent glimpse of this rotation was a train wreck engulfed in fire in a disaster-ridden trash can. , was beaten down by the Philadelphia offense. An ill Max Freed (who was hitting chunks in the clubhouse) had the worst start of the season in Game 1, Spencer his strider injured and his 93 mph fastball gutted in Game 3 And 38-year-old Charlie Morton looked like this. Game 4 he is 38 years old.

But what this group achieved in the regular season should not be overshadowed by disappointing results.

With the Striders joining the rotation at the end of May, only Los Angeles and Houston had low rotation ERA in the final four months of the season.The Dodgers then lost Walker Buehler to Tommy John and Tyler Anderson to free agency. rice field. Houston no longer signs Justin Verlander’s checks: Strider and his tight pants, trademark mustache and outrageous 13.8 K/9 will be top of Atlanta’s rotation for at least the next six years will be

And heading into 2023, baseball’s rotation can’t boast a compelling combination of ceiling, youth and reliability. age.

Freed may be the best left-handed pitcher in the world. Carlos Rodon and Julio Urias would certainly disagree, but the skinny Californian put together a pretty formidable résumé. Throwing (with a decent 3.06 ERA), the three guys above him on that list – Robbie Ray, Marco Gonzalez and Patrick Corbin – are all… not the best lefties… in the world.

Wright has quietly made his biggest run in 2022. After years of conflict, the former No. 5 overall pick blossomed into a bona fide No. 2 starter, pitching 180.1 innings with a 3.19 ERA. Also, he has his 21 wins, so you can tell he wants to win more.

Behind that top three is Morton, 39. Morton hadn’t been a maestro in his three seasons up to that point. Eventually, like all of us, his time will come, but considering the Braves only gave him $20 million to keep him from retiring, now is the time. I clearly don’t think there is.

The fifth spot in rotation will be either Ian Anderson, Mike Soroka, or Bryce Elder.

I understand if the potential dominance of Max Scherzer/Verlander or the Gerrit Cole/Rodón duo is to be missed in a short series, but above 162 they take Atlanta’s young top 3 against anyone.

Jake Mintz

Milwaukee Brewers

You may question the relative steps Corbyn Burns and Brandon Woodruff are taking to the top of the brew crew rotation in 2022 following their overwhelmingly dominant campaign in 2021, but I is not going to waste time praising these two talents. But any discussion of which team has the best rotation in the MLB has to go beyond the top names, so let’s dig deeper.

After a rightfully historic campaign in 2021, Freddy Peralta had very high hopes for 2022. All he did was record the lowest batting average of one his season against a pitcher who appeared in at least his 25 games in MLB history.Even in a season interrupted by injuries — the right-hander missed all of June and he missed all of July with a shoulder injury — Peralta actually low The FIP (3.06) is lower than the breakout 2021 campaign (3.12), making it into the top 5 again. Among the starting pitchers who pitched 70 or more innings BAA (.183), his true super power. It might be silly to bet on endurance here, as shoulder injuries are certainly terrifying, but the point is that when Peralta is on the mound, he’s very close to elite.

We’ve seen just how good this group is in 2021 with Barnes, Woodruff and Peralta firing on all cylinders, but the true X-Factor advancing into the Milwaukee rotation is 24-year-old southpaw Aaron It’s Ashby. His sophomore season’s 4.44 ERA may not fly off the page, but the bat-short component was firmly in place in his first full big league season. The Brewers were the only team in 2022 where he had three pitchers pitch at least 100 innings and had a K/9 of at least 10 (Barnes, Woodruff, Ashby). If Ashby can continue to hold onto the loose command he’s fought over the course of his future ascent, it’s not hard to imagine Ashby unlocking another level in the not too distant future. .

As for staff, lefty Eric Lauer is the perfect back-end starter, but that underestimates his general endurance and propensity for run prevention: a 3.47 ERA over the past two seasons. 30th out of 83 starters Pitched at least 250 innings, smacking between Adam Wainwright and Pablo Lopez. If he’s your number 5, you’re in great shape.

Without the possibility of many other starters changing teams and swinging the needle before the season opener, FanGraphs current projects Milwaukee’s starting pitchers are the third best in fWAR. With one more advance from Ashby and his 2023 health at Peralta, the Brewers can make a legitimate claim as the best rotation in baseball by the end of the season.

Jordan Shusterman

New York Mets

After a change-filled offseason, the New York Mets’ rotation offers the most complete blend of possibility and certainty.

Co-aces Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander are both pushing 40, but have a combined 51 (almost) elite starts in the 2022 regular season. If they can come close to replicating that performance, the Mets are in great shape.

Koudai Senga, a longtime star of Nippon Professional Baseball, provides a significant advantage as the starting number three. And Carlos Carrasco and Jose Quintana are back-end starters who have pitched like mid-rotation options this year. Additionally, each of his five projected starters for the Mets has pitched at least 145 innings in 2022. The same is not true of other teams considered to be top of his rotation, including the Yankees.

The Mets have done so much else this offseason that the rotation addition can feel like an afterthought. understood. They also lost a man who is clearly baseball’s best pitcher when healthy.

Indeed, owner Steve Cohen and general manager Billy Eppler managed to maintain nearly as much advantage this winter while increasing certainty within the Mets’ rotation. is the main reason why the team is predicted to be so good in 2023.

There are certainly risks here. As mentioned earlier, both Scherzer and Verlander are old. Senga has never pitched in the majors. Carrasco in 2021 was terrible. It wasn’t until recently that the Quintana was a Waverwire pickup.

But these are modern day starting pitchers. It’s a dangerous field. The Mets’ rotation isn’t as risky as many of its peers and may be far more effective.

Pedro Moura

new york yankees

The worst pitcher in the Yankees’ five-man rotation is probably the pitcher who finished sixth in the American League Cy Young Award voting two seasons ago.

Best is subjective. This year’s NL Cy Young Award voting allows him to pick a pitcher who finished sixth in his second straight All-Star season.

Or maybe you’re going to the five-time All-Star, still in his early 30s, who led the majors in strikeouts in 2022 and finished ninth in Cy Young voting. Or, if you’re feeling particularly daring, you might pick a pitcher who finished eighth in the AL Cy Young voting for the first All-Star campaign of the year.

Of course, there’s also the guy who was named an All-Star for the second year in a row in 2017-18 and was in the top 10 in Cy Young polls before he turned 25.

If it’s hard which from the top matches Gerrit Cole, Carlos Rodon, Nestor Cortez, Luis Severino, and Frankie Montas, it’s totally fair and an embarrassment of wealth with the best rotation in baseball at your disposal If you don’t want to take my word for it, FanGraphs’ expected WAR totals may help solidify your beliefs.

Sure, rotations always have risks. Rodon threw no more than 178 innings last season. Cole had more starts than any other pitcher in baseball last year and he hit 33 home runs. Cortez is just coming off a breakout season without a sustained track record of success. Severino has pitched all 120 innings since the start of his 2019 season, notably missing Tommy’s comeback time from his John surgery. Shoulder problems plagued Montas, who did not have the finish he had hoped for in the 2022 season.

But like Domingo Germain and Clark Schmidt, the Yankees have the depth to handle an injury or two. many One of the Yankees’ starting pitchers pitches to his credit, but it’s hard to imagine another rotation in baseball offering more pitches.

Cole, who finished the season with 257 strikeouts, third best Pitchers in this group take turns winning after Rodon (5.4 bWAR) and Cortez (4.2 bWAR). Cole and Rodon finished first and his third respectively in strikeouts last season, and now he offers one of the top tandem in baseball to take on urban rivals. Getting as much attention as re-signing Aaron Judge has rightfully received, the addition of Rodon takes an already stacked Yankees pitching staff and elevates it above the rest of the competition.

— Rowan Kavner

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