14. Yu Darvish- Chicago Cubs
2017: 10-12 3.86 ERA 209 K’s
Don’t let the poor World Series performance dupe you into thinking that Yu Darvish isn’t a premier top 15 maybe even top 10 pitcher this year. He may not have had an impressive record last year but then again last year, he was on a struggling Rangers team. The case of Jose Quintana that I mentioned earlier will be the case for Yu Darvish. Expect a better record and the strikeouts to either stay the same or ascend. The Cubs defense should also help him from an ERA perspective, being one of the best defenses in the league.
13. Marcus Stroman- Toronto Blue Jays
2017: 13-9 3.09 ERA 164 K’s
Stroman will not start on Opening Day due to minor shoulder inflammation but he is still a worthy pick that could go unnoticed in your draft. I believe he is heavily underrated this upcoming year due to his ERA and record with the Blue Jays, who have been on the decline recently. a model of a consistency who is extraordinary at forcing groundballs, he is reliant on his defense but I can see his ERA dropping under 3.00 due to his consistency.
12. Dallas Keuchel- Houston Astros
2017: 14-5 2.90 ERA 125 K’s
Keuchel struggled during the second half of last season posting a 4.24 ERA but even that couldn’t kill his ERA numbers. Coming off of injury in 2016, 2017 was a resurgent year into his better Cy Young winning form in 2015. He can force ground balls and consistent outs better than most pitchers in the league. Obviously the strikeout numbers need to be bolstered but if you want a consistent pitcher that will give you a decent amount of points every start then look no further.
11. Madison Bumgarner- San Francisco Giants
2017: 4-9 3.32 ERA 101 K’s
The only reason why MadBum is outside of the Top 10 is mainly because of his injury that he suffered late into Spring Training. He could miss up to 8 weeks, so if you have the patience to draft him, he might be worth your while as long as his hand isn’t re-injured. Besides the injury, these stats were accumulated after just 13 starts and the rest over the winter helped him plenty in Spring Training. Let’s hope that after recovering from this injury, that he doesn’t have too many bad repercussions.
10. Noah Syndergaard- New York Mets
2017: 1-2 2.97 ERA 34 K’s
After pitching with a partially torn lat the past year, and pitching with a bone spur in his elbow the year before, health seems to be the main question going into this year for Thor. He has the fastest fastball in the land and he can throw really hard really consistently. He mixes up his repertoire by throwing sliders, changeups and curveballs. If he is healthy, with his numbers, he is a candidate for the Cy Young, but if he isn’t, he could be on the DL for a while. Sounds like a make or break pick but again with his numbers, I personally am willing to take the risk.