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Welcome back, RotoBallers. I'll be breaking down impact prospects in dynasty leagues by position over the next several weeks. I’ve already covered catchers, first basemen, second basemen, third basemen, shortstops and both AL and NL outfielders. Today I'm bringing you my top 20 National League starting pitchers - dynasty prospect rankings for 2018 dynasty baseball leagues.

In the second-to-last dynasty rankings, this list will be expanding to 20 names instead of the normal 10. Since there are so many pitchers worth covering and almost everyone in the top 10 is an obvious player to own in dynasty leagues, it is valuable for dynasty owners to see even more starting pitchers to start to get an idea of what other pitchers to target. So both the National League and American League lists will feature 20 pitchers.

So without any further ado, here is the dynasty positional prospect rankings for NL starting pitchers.

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Top NL SP Prospects for 2018 Dynasty Baseball Leagues

1. Alex Reyes (STL, NA)
Stats: NA
ETA: 2018
Tommy John surgery is not enough to tarnish Reyes’ fantasy stock. Though it certainly was a blow for owners to have to wait another year to fully reap the rewards, pitchers bounce back quite well from the surgery today and Reyes should be no different. He has arguably the most electric fastball in the minors and his curveball is a true plus-plus offering. His changeup is the weakest of his main pitches, but it plays well off the fastball and is an above-average offering with the chance to be even better. The control wavers from time-to-time, but it has steadily improved as he’s matured. Early concerns were that he might have to be forced to the bullpen, but it appears he could avoid that fate after all. He has true ace upside, and should get his chance to fully put his talents on display later this season.

2. Walker Buehler (LAD, MLB)
Stats: (from AA) 49 IP, 3.49 ERA, 2.95 FIP, 32.8% K%, 7.7% BB%, 16.1% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Just as Tommy John surgery did not diminish Reyes’ value, it has not done much to affect Buehler. He required the surgery when he was leaving Vanderbilt for the MLB draft, but has bounced fully back and demonstrated why he was so highly valued in the 2015 draft. There is not much not too like about Buehler. His repertoire comes with three above-average pitches and an average changeup that at least gives him a fourth offering. His control is good, but he got into some walk issues as he approached the higher levels of professional baseball. There is still concern his thin frame and the depth of the Dodgers’ rotation could force a move to the bullpen. But manager Dave Roberts said he expects the top Dodgers’ prospect to spend 2018 working as a starting pitcher. If he remains in the rotation and gains some polish, he could emerge as the third-head in Los Angeles’ Cerberus, joining Clayton Kershaw and Julio Urias.

3. Mitch Keller (PIT, AA)
Stats: (from A+) 77.1 IP, 3.14 ERA, 3.54 FIP, 20.9% K%, 6.9% BB%, 8.3% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Earlier in his professional career, Keller was viewed as a high upside pitcher with control issues, stemming from an inconsistent delivery and a high-octane arsenal he had trouble controlling. He also dealt with injuries that hampered his progress. The Pittsburgh Pirates have since ironed out the control issues by simplifying his delivery and he bulked up which has helped him both command and refine his pitches to the point where he is now viewed as a potential top-of-the-rotation starter for the Pirates. His fastball now touches the upper-90s and his curveball gives him a plus-plus secondary offering. Like many young pitchers, the changeup has not progressed as quickly as his top two offerings, but scouts believe Keller is destined for the front of the Pirates’ rotation as early as later this year.

4. Luiz Gohara (ATL, MLB)
Stats: (from AA) 52.0 IP, 2.60 ERA, 2.52 FIP, 27.7% K%, 8.3% BB%, 4.4% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Gohara seemed to be going nowhere as long as he was with the Seattle Mariners. The stuff looked lively, but he could not seem to control it. But sent over to the pitching prospect haven of the Atlanta Braves and Gohara was able to turn things around, improving his command and missing more bats than ever on his way to the majors despite beginning the season at Advanced Class-A. His upper-90s fastball and upper-80s slider are a lethal one-two punch, and despite the fact he lacks a true third offering, scouts believe he has what it takes to stick in the rotation. Gohara’s control remains inconsistent and he still has some development left, but he should occupy a rotation spot full-time before the end of 2018.

5. Kyle Wright (ATL, A+)
Stats: 11.1 IP, 3.18 ERA, 2.87 FIP, 21.7% K%, 8.7% BB%, 0.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2019
It was a toss-up between Wright and Gohara for the No. 4 spot on this list. Gohara’s stuff is more electric, but Wright is more polished and well-rounded. Wright’s time pitching at Vanderbilt helped him develop a repertoire of pitches that all grade out at above-average or better with a mid-90s fastball with movement along with a power curve and a hard slider. He also adds in a plus changeup with above-average control, making him the most developed pitcher from the 2017 draft class and likely the first one to reach the majors. He should be in the majors at some point in 2019, but knowing how aggressively the Braves move their prospects through the minors, a 2018 debut cannot be ruled out. He has the stuff and polish to be a No. 2 pitcher in an MLB rotation at some point.

6. Mackenzie Gore (SD, ROK)
Stats: 21.1 IP, 1.27 ERA, 2.14 FIP, 40.5% K%, 8.3% BB%, 0.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2021
Just as Wright was the most complete college pitchers in the 2017 MLB Draft class, Gore was the most polished high school arm in the class. Despite an unorthodox windup, Gore has well above-average control for someone of his age and already has four pitches that grade out as above-average or better with two being considered plus pitches for him. His fastball velocity is in the mid-90s, but with his frame and youth, he has the potential to add more miles-per-hour with a few years of development. Gore has what it takes to soar through the minors with his array of pitches and excellent control, and I would fully expect him to be the first high school arm in 2017 to reach the majors. Throw in his lofty upside of a future ace and he’s a pitching prospect dynasty owners won’t want to miss out on.

7. Hunter Greene (CIN, ROK)
Stats: 4.1 IP, 12.46 ERA, 2.35 FIP, 28.6% K%, 4.8% BB%, 0.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2021
Gore was the most complete pitcher in the high-school ranks in 2017. Greene was the most explosive and has the higher upside. There has never been a high-school pitcher who came into the draft throwing as hard as Greene, who routinely sits in the upper-90s and often triple-digits. What separates Greene from so many other hard-throwers is the ease with which he reaches 100 mph. His delivery is smooth, which gives scouts confidence he will be able to repeat it as he is tested through the minors. He lacks the secondary offerings Gore possesses, but his slider and changeup both could become plus offerings. Gore gets the slightest of edges right now because he is more developed at the same age, but if both players reach their ceilings, Greene will be the better pitcher. He is a gifted pitcher with the chance to be one of the most dominant pitchers in the majors in a few seasons.

8. Mike Soroka (ATL, AA)
Stats: 153.2 IP, 2.75 ERA, 3.19 FIP, 19.9% K%, 5.4% BB%, 6.8% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
When I talked earlier about how aggressively the Braves move their prospects through the minors, that really applies to three players: Soroka, Kolby Allard and Ronald Acuna. Of course, they don’t promote them just to promote them. All three of those players warranted those promotions. At age 19, Soroka began the 2017 season at Double-A, skipping Advanced Class-A altogether. Like Wright and most other pitchers in Atlanta’s system, Soroka is extremely well polished. Though his repertoire is not quite as diverse, Soroka still has three above-average or better pitches and excellent control over all of them. He is probably not a No. 2 starter, but he has the ceiling of an above-average No. 3 starter. His floor is one of the highest for a former high school prospect, which just makes him all the more exciting for fantasy owners.

9. Sixto Sanchez (PHI, A+)
Stats: (from A) 67.1 IP, 2.41 ERA, 2.35 FIP, 25.0% K%, 3.5% BB%, 1.8% HR/FB
ETA: 2019
If this list were based solely on pure upside, Sanchez would be up several spots and would certainly be ahead of Soroka. Sanchez hits the upper-90s and triple-digits with an effortless delivery. He commands the fastball well, which is what has helped him get through the minors to this point. His secondary offerings are less than stellar, but evaluators believe his slider and curveball will become above-average pitches for him eventually. He did not miss as many bats as dynasty owners would hope last season, but his control helped him still post solid ERA numbers and should help him get up to the majors quicker than other 19-year-old prospects. The strikeouts will come for him, and if he can reach his lofty upside, he should find himself as the ace of the Phillies in a few seasons.

10. Kolby Allard (ATL, AA)
Stats: 150.0 IP, 3.18 ERA, 3.27 FIP, 20.8% K%, 7.3% BB%, 6.5% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Allard is one of those prospects dynasty owners hold onto despite being consistently frustrated by scouts evaluations. He is a true control specialist with some of the best command of any pitcher in the minors. He is capable of locating his pitches with pinpoint accuracy. However, scouts consistently point to that being the only thing that keeps him regarded as a top prospect because he lacks the velocity to really get the better of hitters. Allard’s best secondary offering is his plus-plus offering while his curveball does give him an above-average offspeed pitch. He will not be an ace and might not be a major strikeout guy in the majors, but owners can count on consistent production from the southpaw even if he never wows anyone.

11. Ian Anderson (ATL, A)
Stats: 83.0 IP, 3.14 ERA, 3.04 FIP, 28.5% K%, 12.1% BB%, 0.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2020
Anderson is very much the opposite of Allard. While Allard is more of a control specialist with less than explosive stuff, Anderson is capable of blowing past hitters and has front-of-the-rotation upside with a little bit more risk. Anderson has a mid-90s fastball and a changeup that made great improvements in the 2017 season. He also has a slurve that is stuck between a slider and curveball that he throws hard enough to make it a quality offering. He walked too many batters in 2017, but most believe that with time, he will correct that. Of course, the concern is that if he doesn’t, he might not be able to reach his lofty upside. But if Anderson shows continued improvement in 2018, he should move past Allard and Soroka among best Braves’ pitching prospects.

12. Cal Quantrill (SD, AA)
Stats: (from A+) 73.2 IP, 3.67 ERA, 3.87 FIP, 24.1% K%, 7.6% BB%, 7.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Quantrill has the potential to be the 2016 equivalent of Walker Buehler. Teams knew in the draft that he was going to have to have Tommy John surgery, but the San Diego Padres took him anyway knowing that if he returned to his college form when he was at Stanford, they might have the steal of the draft on their hands. While Quantrill has not yet looked as dominant as Buehler, he has shown the Padres why it was wise for them to take the risk on him. Since returning to the mound, Quantrill has been able to get his fastball velocity back up to the mid-90s where he was at while on the Cardinal. He adds in one of the best right-handed changeups in the minors and a slider and curveball that give him a diverse array of pitches. Quantrill looked a little shaky in Double-A, but clearly overwhelmed most batters in Advanced Class-A. He should return to Double-A to begin 2018 and could be in the majors by the end of the year with the chance to become a No. 3 starter in the big leagues.

13. Mitchell White (LAD, AA)
Stats: (from A+) 38.2 IP, 3.72 ERA, 2.85 FIP, 30.8% K%, 10.1% BB%, 0.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2019
Another recipient of Tommy John surgery, White went under the knife in high school before dominating batters at Santa Clara enough to warrant the Dodgers to use a second-round pick on him in 2016. That pick seems to have worked out. White has a fastball that reaches the mid-upper-90s but features heavy cutting action that is one of the better fastballs in the minors. He throws an above-average curveball and a plus slider that give him a wide array of pitches to throw. White still needs to improve his control of his pitches, but he has the stuff dynasty owners like to see in a pitching prospect. He has the ceiling of a No. 2 starter if he improves his control, but could still be a No. 3 or 4 starter if the control never fully develops just because of the quality of his stuff.

14. Jon Duplantier (ARI, A+)
Stats: 63.1 IP, 1.56 ERA, 2.95 FIP, 34.1% K%, 10.6% BB%, 5.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2019
Duplantier pitched all of one inning in 2016 after being drafted out of Rice, and it did not go well for him. He turned that around incredibly fast in 2017 and quickly established himself in his first pro season as one of the most polished pitching prospects from the 2016 draft class. Duplantier dominated opposing hitters in Class-A before again overpowering batters at Advanced Class-A en route to winning the 2017 Minor-League ERA title. Duplantier does not have an explosive fastball, but he can get it into the mid-90s with movement. He also adds two above-average secondary offerings in his slider and curveball, two pitches scouts believe have the chance to be plus pitches. He also has pinpoint control that helps him dissect hitters with ease. He will be tested at Double-A next season, but his plus-plus control and well-rounded repertoire should allow him to excel in Jackson. Though he does not have ace-upside, Duplantier’s high floor and ceiling as a low-No. 2, high-No. 3 starter makes him an attractive asset for dynasty owners.

15. Corbin Burnes (MIL, AA)
Stats: 85.2 IP, 2.10 ERA, 2.23 FIP, 24.9% K%, 5.9% BB%, 2.7% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
The 2017 season was not Burnes’ first for posting a sub-2.50 ERA. But what made the campaign so special for the then-22-year-old was the fact that he reduced his walks-per-nine rate by nearly three walks and was able to reach Double-A after beginning the season at Advanced Class-A. Burnes will never blow hitters away with his stuff, but he proved in 2017 that he knows how to locate a broad range of weapons that all grade out as above-average. He has a low-mid-90s fastball with cutting action and a slider that serves as his top out-pitch. The curveball and changeup have also made strides to round out his repertoire. Burnes knows how to pitch and should be able to reach the majors at some point in 2018. Expect him to be a solid middle of the rotation starter for the Brewers and a low-risk option for fantasy owners.

16. Yadier Alvarez (LAD, AA)
Stats: (from A+) 59.1 IP, 5.31 ERA, 3.78 FIP, 23.3% K%, 9.5% BB%, 6.0% HR/FB
ETA: 2019
Alvarez’s pure stuff can match just about any pitcher in the minors. He throws an upper-90s fastball and pairs it with a plus slider and plus curveball to give him one of the best repertoires in the minors. The problem with Alvarez is that he has next to no control over his pitches and has not seemed to make much of any strides in the minors despite being elevated all the way up to Double-A this past season. There are some pitchers who can start despite control problems, but this could cost Alvarez a shot to start given the depth of pitching prospects the Dodgers have. He has the upside of a No. 2 starter if he completely reigns in his control, but he finds himself low on this list because there appears to be a strong chance he ends up as a closer for Los Angeles.

17. Jack Flaherty (STL, MLB)
Stats: (from AAA) 85.1 IP, 2.74 ERA, 4.10 FIP, 25.1% K%, 7.1% BB%, 10.8% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Flaherty consistently ranks highly among prospect evaluators for his plus-makeup and above-average array of pitches. Scouts praise his plus changeup and above-average fastball and slider that give him a diverse set of options to use, as well as his well above-average control that allows him to consistently locate his pitches. He does not have a high ceiling, and does not figure to be a strikeout machine in the majors. But he has an incredibly high floor and should have no problem filling in as a No. 3 or 4 starter in the majors for many years.

18. Brandon Woodruff (MIL, MLB)
Stats: (from AAA) 75.1 IP, 4.30 ERA, 4.44 FIP, 21.5% K%, 7.7% BB%, 10.7% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Much like the other Brewer on this list — Corbin Burnes — Woodruff is more of a command specialist who relies on excellent control to locate his pitches well and find success despite lacking an overpowering array of pitches. But while Burnes throws more of a cutter, Woodruff has more sink on his fastball, which allows him to keep the ball in the yard. Like Burnes, Woodruff’s top pitch is his slider. Woodruff was not overwhelming at Triple-A last season, but Colorado Springs is a notoriously challenging home for pitchers and the results were solid considering the stadium. He has a chance to begin the year in Milwaukee’s rotation and should be an innings-eating No. 3 or 4 starter for owners.

19. Tyler Mahle (CIN, MLB)
Stats: (from AAA) 59.1 IP, 2.73 ERA, 3.25 FIP, 21.2% K%, 5.4% BB%, 6.8% HR/FB
ETA: 2018
Mahle was never seen as a guy who would ever be in consideration for a placement on any top-100 prospect list. The stuff was just never really there. But now as he is preparing for a 2018 season that will see him likely in the majors for a bulk of, Mahle sits comfortably on most lists thanks in large part to an improved fastball that now reaches the mid-90s (sometimes upper-90s) and he throws three other above-average offerings. The selling point on Mahle is his extreme control, important for someone pitching in a matchbox like Great American Ballpark. Scouts compare him to Mike Leake, a comparison dynasty owners will be more than happy to own on their team.

20. Adonis Medina (PHI, A)
Stats: 119.2 IP, 3.01 ERA, 3.34 FIP, 26.3% K%, 7.7% BB%, 6.9% HR/FB
ETA: 2020
Medina’s development has taken a long time. He was signed at 17 by the Phillies, and now at 21 years old, he is still only at Class-A. He has progressed throughout his years though. His fastball touches the mid-90s and he’s developed a promising changeup that is now appearing to be his top secondary offering. His slider and curveball still have development left. His control has assisted him to this point. Medina’s upside is not quite as high as a lot of people would like, largely because he has been a slow developer and still has more work in front of him. But if he continues on his upward trajectory and makes progress from a promising 2017 season, he should be able to become a future No. 3 starter in the majors.


More 2018 Dynasty Baseball Strategy