The folks at DraftStreet are back and sponsoring another look at some fantasy baseball players to watch in 2012. Picking up the best starting pitchers in the game can lead you to huge victories in your fantasy baseball league, and we are going to be looking at the top fantasy pitchers that you should be drafting in 2012.
Justin Verlander, Detroit Tigers – If you had Verlander on your team last year, you probably are reading this article while glancing over at your fantasy baseball championship trophy as well. Simply put, the Tigers’ ace was awesome. He went 24-5 and won the pitching version of the Triple Crown by posting a 2.40 ERA and 250 strikeouts. The playoffs weren’t kind to Verlander, so that might be a concern, but you know you’re going to get an awesome season out of him as long as he stays healthy.
Dan Haren, Los Angeles Angels – Haren was ranked the ninth best starting pitcher in the game last year, but now, he is going to have a heck of a team in front of him. The Halos should be good for another 12-15 wins at minimum, and we fully expect to see Haren get into the high-teens in victories this season. He’s got a great WHIP and rarely walks batters, and that 3.17 ERA could be even lower. Still, with the exact same season that he had last year, Haren probably goes 18-8 instead of 16-10, and is probably ia Top 5 fantasy baseball pitcher. That’s exactly what we’re counting on this year!
David Price, Tampa Bay Rays – Don’t let Price’s 12-13 record fool you. He is a legitimate contender for the Cy Young Award in the AL this season. He had a 3.49 ERA and 218 strikeouts, and he is still a young, dominating lefty at the top of a very solid rotation. The bats for the Rays aren’t going to struggle as much as they did last year, and we fully expect to see a ton of wins for Price as a result.
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Michael Pineda, New York Yankees – Pineda is going to likely be one of the top starters for the Yanks this year, and he has the potential to put up numbers like CC Sabathia in spite of the fact that you could probably get him five rounds later in your fantasy draft. Pineda could have some issues adjusting to life in the Bronx, but remember that he has a tremendous lineup in front of him now, not one of the worst in the game like he had in Seattle last year. This is a starting hurler with tremendous upside.
Mark Buehrle, Miami Marlins – Buehrle is a bit of an unknown commodity this year. He is definitely aging, and he has never been the best strikeout pitcher in the world, but he is also a man that is switching leagues, which generally is a good thing for pitchers and an iffy thing for the hitters opposing them. We know that Buehrle is going to put his team in a position to win, and though the NL East schedule is brutal, we also know that this team around him is good enough to get the job done even if the southpaw isn’t at his best.