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Fantasy Baseball: 2011 In-Season Pitcher Rankings

Looking at the top starters and closers two weeks into the season


Updated December 04, 2011

Everyone's favorite reliever, Brian Wilson, is back.

The bearded one's return from the disabled list was rocky at the start. Wilson had a 33.75 ERA and allowed four hits and three walks in 1 1/3 innings in his first two appearances for the Giants this season.

On April 12 and 13, pitching in back-to-back days for the first time, Wilson was perfect -- 2-for-2 in saves, a 0.00 ERA, 0.00 WHIP and four Ks.

He's atop our in-season closer rankings -- exactly where he belongs.

Two more pitching notes before we get to the rankings: The Angels' duo of Jered Weaver and Dan Haren have leaped from No. 11 and 22, respectively, in the preseason to No. 3 and No. 10 after going a combined 6-0 in their first six starts.

Yes, it's early. But that won't stop us from ranking the starters from 1 to 50, hoping it will be a good barometer for trades and free-agent acquisitions.

As we explained in the initial piece ranking the batters, the key criteria for the rankings is the players are ranked according to who is the best at each position at the time of the rankings -- not who we think will be the best in September. What each player has done thus far matters quite a bit, but the key question you should ask yourself when ranking players at each position is if you had a championship game tomorrow, in which order would you have each player?

Any players on the disabled list at the time of the rankings are not considered. Players are ranked at each position at which they are eligible, according to ESPN.com's criteria.

We'll try to update the rankings a couple of times per month for both the batters and pitchers.


1. Roy Halladay, Phillies

2. Tim Lincecum, Giants

3. Jered Weaver, Angels

4. Felix Hernandez, Mariners

5. Jon Lester, Red Sox

6. Justin Verlander, Tigers

7. Cliff Lee, Phillies

8. CC Sabathia, Yankees

9. Josh Johnson, Mariners

10. Dan Haren, Angels

11. Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers

12. David Price, Rays

13. Roy Oswalt, Phillies

14. Yovani Gallardo, Brewers

15. Jonathan Sanchez, Giants

16. Trevor Cahill, Athletics

17. Tommy Hanson, Braves

18. Matt Cain, Giants

19. Mat Latos, Padres

20. Cole Hamels, Phillies

21. Max Scherzer, Tigers

22. Josh Beckett, Red Sox

23. Jaime Garcia, Cardinals

24. Gio Gonzalez, Athletics

25. Chris Carpenter, Cardinals

26. Tim Hudson, Braves

27. Clay Buchholz, Red Sox

28. C.J. Wilson, Rangers

29. Brett Anderson, Athletics

30. Ricky Nolasco, Marlins

31. John Danks, White Sox

32. Chad Billingsley, Dodgers

33. Colby Lewis, Rangers

34. Brett Myers, Astros

35. Shaun Marcum, Brewers

36. Ricky Romero, Blue Jays

37. Madison Bumgarner, Giants

38. Ryan Dempster, Cubs

39. Edwin Jackson, White Sox

40. Hiroki Kuroda, Dodgers

41. Daniel Hudson, Diamondbacks

42. Matt Garza, Cubs

43. Michael Pineda, Mariners

44. Ervin Santana, Angels

45. Francisco Liriano, Twins

46. Bronson Arroyo, Reds

47. Jeremy Hellickson, Rays

48. Edinson Volquez, Reds

49. Derek Holland, Rangers

50. Jhoulys Chacin, Rockies

Last five out: Carlos Zambrano, Cubs; Jorge De La Rosa, Rockies; Aaron Harang, Padres; Gavin Floyd, White Sox; A.J. Burnett, Yankees

Disabled list: Ubaldo Jimenez, Rockies; Zack Greinke, Brewers; Brandon Morrow, Blue Jays; Johnny Cueto, Reds; Johan Santana, Mets


1. Brian Wilson, Giants

2. Mariano Rivera, Yankees

3. Heath Bell, Padres

4. Neftali Feliz, Rangers

5. Carlos Marmol, Cubs

6. Joakim Soria, Royals

7. Chris Perez, Indians

8. Huston Street, Rockies

9. Craig Kimbrel, Braves

10. Jose Valverde, Tigers

11. Jonathan Broxton, Dodgers

12. Brian Fuentes, Athletics

13. Jose Contreras, Phillies

14. Jonathan Papelbon, Red Sox

15. John Axford, Brewers

16. Francisco Rodriguez, Mets

17. Francisco Cordero, Reds

18. Joe Nathan, Twins

19. Joel Hanrahan, Pirates

20. Leo Nunez, Marlins

21. Fernando Rodney, Angels

22. J.J. Putz, Diamondbacks

23. Jon Rauch, Blue Jays

24. Sean Burnett, Nationals

25. Kyle Farnsworth, Rays

Disabled list: Andrew Bailey, Athletics; Brad Lidge, Phillies; David Aardsma, Mariners; Frank Francisco, Blue Jays

Also see: Mid-April batter rankings

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