Fantasy baseball pitching rankings, lineup tips for Saturday’s MLB games

ESPN FantasyMay 26, 2023, 03:00 p.m. ET5 minute read

Saturday’s starter is better than he has shown so far.

Cleveland Guardian rookie Tanner Bibee has pitched well so far, but there’s more strikeout potential lurking, and it makes him worth relying on this weekend against the Cardinals.

Look up our daily fantasy baseball starting pitcher rankings, updates and hitter relegations to help you make smart fantasy baseball lineup decisions and for MLB betting tips. MLB game odds are provided by Caesars Sportsbook, and fantasy tips are geared toward ESPN’s 10-team standard-scoring leagues.

For an in-depth look at what to expect in this daily article, and how to best use the information contained within, check out our primer here.

Note: This file will be updated with any weather-related overnight pitch changes or game postponements, along with the addition of the latest MLB game odds at the posted post time.

What you need to know for Saturday’s MLB games

By Mike Sheets

  • Tyler Glasnow is set to make his debut in 2023 after being sidelined since late February with a left oblique strain. The 29-year-old right-hander made four rehab starts at Triple-A, posting a 0.68 ERA, 0.98 WHIP and 13.5 K/9 rate in 13.1 frames. In Glasnow’s last rehab outing, he pitched six two-run innings of ball, hitting as many as 67 pitches. He reportedly averaged 95-97 mph with his fastball during his rehab, so he seems primed and ready to go. On Saturday, Glasnow has a tough landing spot against the Los Angeles Dodgers, but if he’s been hiding it on his bench for the past two months, he’ll go ahead and set it up for this weekend’s matchup.

  • At first glance, it looks like Josiah Gray (24% on ESPN’s league list) is putting it all together this season, posting a 2.65 ERA in his first 10 starts. A closer look reveals a falling strikeout rate (7.3 K/9), rising walk rate (4.4 BB/9) and a 1.39 WHIP that suggests he’s had some luck with runners on base. Despite the red flags, Gray has now held opposing teams to three or fewer earned runs in nine straight starts, and Saturday’s matchup against the Kansas City Royals is extremely favorable. Among all MLB teams, the Royals rank third in baseball with an 81 wRC+ in 2023.

  • After getting roughed up by the Arizona Diamondbacks in early May (6 ER on 4.2 IP), Andrew Heaney (37%) has seemingly found his groove. He has made three straight quality starts and has allowed just one earned run in his last 12 innings. Although Heaney hasn’t matched his strikeout prowess from last season (13.6 K/9), he’s still short on a lot of hits (9.8 K/9), and is doing a better job limiting hard contact. The Baltimore Orioles’ lineup presents a tough matchup on Saturday, but Camden Yards plays a lot more pitcher-friendly now than it did a couple of years ago.

  • Jameson Taillon is a pitcher we want to attack right now. The right-hander posted a 4.50 ERA in his first three starts of the year, and after a brief stint at the IL, his ERA has ballooned to 8.10 in his last four outings. Left-handed hitters have done a lot of the damage against him, slashing .358/.452/.679 with a .476 wOBA. With the Cincinnati Reds in town this weekend, left-handed hitters Jake Fraley (13%) and TJ Friedl (4%) are interesting streamers. Fraley looks particularly attractive, as he owns a .304/.398/.487 slash line against right-handers this season.

  • There are also some Chicago Cubs hitters worth targeting in this matchup. With lefty Brandon Williamson setting the tone for the Reds, Seiya Suzuki (53%), who is hitting .310/.405/.606 in May, Patrick Wisdom (31%) and Yan Gomes (7%) are all in favorable places. Plus, if Christopher Morel (56%) is still available in your league after blasting nine home runs in 13 games this year, then he’ll move to the top of the list.

Starting Pitcher Rankings for Saturday

The best hitters below 50% of the roster for Saturday

The best and worst hitters of the day are generated by THE BAT X, a projection system created by Derek Carty that uses advanced methods like those used in MLB front offices, accounting for a variety of factors including player talent, stadiums, bullpens, weather, umpires, defense, catcher’s shooting frame and much more.

  • Francisco Alvarez (NYM, DH — 7%) at Chase Anderson

  • Brett Baty (NYM, 3B — 11%) at Anderson

  • Mark Canha (NYM, LF — 5%) at Anderson

  • Elías Díaz (COL, C — 39%) vs. Justin Verlander

  • Randal Grichuk (COL, RF — 4%) vs. Verlander

  • Daniel Vogelbach (NYM, DH — 1%) at Anderson

  • Josh Naylor (CLE, 1B — 45%) vs. Jack Flaherty

  • Luis Garcia (WSH, SS — 8%) at Brady Singer

  • Charlie Blackmon (COL, RF — 21%) vs. Verlander

  • Jurickson Profar (COL, LF — 11%) vs. Verlander

The worst hitters over 50% on the roster for Saturday

  • James Outman (LAD, LF — 57%) on Tyler Glasnow

  • Josh Lowe (TB, RF — 73%) vs. Clayton Kershaw

  • Brent Rooker (OAK, LF — 60%) vs. Framber Valdez

  • Gunnar Henderson (BAL, 3B — 54%) vs. Andrew Heaney

  • Michael Harris II (ATL, CF — 76%) vs. Zack Wheeler

  • Brandon Lowe (TB, 2B — 67%) vs. Kershaw

  • Jorge Mateo (BAL, SS — 54%) vs. Heaney

  • Isaac Paredes (TB, 3B — 51%) vs. Kershaw

  • Willy Adames (MIL, SS — 79%) vs. Logan Webb

  • Ozzie Albies (ATL, 2B — 99%) vs. Wheeler