Whose starting rotation is the best in baseball?
This off-season saw plenty of starting pitchers change teams, with the trade market being a hot commodity. Blake Snell, Yu Darvish, Trevor Bauer, Carlos Carrasco, Taijwaun Walker, Charlie Morton, and Jose Quintana are just a few starters who have found themselves new homes. Throw in the pitchers who will be returning from opting out of the prior season or the IL and the majority of the team’s starting rotations will look drastically different.
Last year, we ranked all 30 starting rotations which can be seen here. Like last season, 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 we weren’t as high on certain players as others. With pitchers returning from injuries, would they be the same? Also similar to last year, FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching) was the main component in these rankings. 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. Lastly, unlike last year, I had help this time around on the rankings. The three of us voted on the 30 rotations with the results playing another major part. Everything will be factored together, but FIP and the voting will play a major role in these rankings.