Whose starting rotation is the best in baseball?
Baseball is finally back and now seemed like the perfect time to rank all 30 starting rotations. This past off-season saw plenty of teams completely revamp their rotations. Pitchers such as Gerrit Cole, Zach Wheeler, Corey Kluber, David Price, Madison Bumgarner, and Hyun-Jin Ryu all found new homes via free agency or trade. At the same time, plenty of pitchers were placed on the IL or opted out of the upcoming season which will cause ripple effects throughout the league.
For my criteria of ranking each roster, I took a few things into consideration. How much talent did each rotation add/lose? How much have each team’s starters regressed/improved? Some of the team’s rotations were ranked lower because I wasn’t as high on certain players as others (Yu Darvish, Dallas Keuchel, Mike Foltynewicz). A statistic that will be seen throughout this article is FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching). According to Fangraphs,
"“FIP is a measurement of a pitcher’s performance that strips out the role of defense, luck, and sequencing, making it a more stable indicator of how a pitcher actually performed over a given period of time than a runs allowed based statistic that would be highly dependent on the quality of defense played behind him, for example. Certain pitchers have shown an ability to consistently post lower ERAs than their FIP suggests, but overall FIP captures most pitchers’ true performance quite well.'”"
FIP is graded on a scale which can be found here. Everything will be factored together, but FIP will play a major role in these rankings. Without further ado, let’s get started.