Is your fantasy starting rotation struggling? Or maybe you just need some extra strikeouts? Then consider adding these pitchers, who are all scheduled to make two starts in Week 14.Standard mixed leaguesGio Gonzalez (vs. MIL, @NYM): Although the chances of Gonzalez being available on the waiver wire in any league
Is your fantasy starting rotation struggling? Or maybe you just need some extra strikeouts? Then consider adding these pitchers, who are all scheduled to make two starts in Week 14.
Standard mixed leagues
Gio Gonzalez (vs. MIL, @NYM): Although the chances of Gonzalez being available on the waiver wire in any league are slim, the Nationals southpaw is no longer a must-start regardless of the matchup. Over his last seven starts, Gonzalez is 0-6 with an 8.44 ERA and a 1.71 WHIP. That said, he remains a reliable source of strikeouts (9.2 K/9 this season), and his 3.66 FIP and .335 opponent's BABIP suggest that poor luck has contributed to his current 4.73 ERA. As for next week's matchups, the 30-year-old has registered only one quality start in three combined outings vs. the Brewers and Mets this year. But the two clubs rank 12th and 14th, respectively, in the NL in runs scored. Starting this Nationals arm is worth the risk.
Mike Leake (vs. PIT, @MIL): While Leake is coming off a disappointing performance against the Mariners, the Cardinals righty had allowed two runs or fewer in seven of his previous eight starts. His matchups next week are promising, as the Pirates and Brewers both rank in the bottom third of the Majors in runs scored and OPS this month. Outside of shallower leagues, Leake is a quality option.
Junior Guerra (@WAS, vs. STL): Having allowed a combined two runs over his last two starts to go along with 15 strikeouts in 15 innings, Guerra will be challenged next week. But while the Nationals and Cardinals both rank in the top five of the NL in OPS this season, the Washington offense has not been quite as productive at home (seventh in NL in OPS). And while the Cardinals rank first in the NL in OPS on the road, Guerra is 4-1 with a 2.48 ERA in six home starts this season. All in all, despite the matchups, this Milwaukee righty is a viable two-start choice.
Deeper mixed leagues
James Shields (vs. NYY, vs. ATL): For the first time since May 25, Shields finally turned in a quality start on Wednesday, holding the Twins to one run over 6 2/3 innings. But even after this stellar showing, the veteran righty has a 11.07 ERA through five starts with the White Sox. Expect that number to significantly decrease next week, as the Yankees and Braves rank 23rd and 30th, respectively, in the Majors in runs scored and 29th and 30th, respectively, in OPS on the road. Shields remains strictly a deep-league option for now, but considering his accomplished track record, he may soon resurface on standard mixed-league radars.
Matt Moore (vs. LAA, @BOS): The owner of a 4.67 ERA and 1.32 WHIP through 16 starts this season, Moore might seem like a questionable choice. A road matchup against a Red Sox team that leads the Majors in runs scored and OPS adds to the risk. But the Rays southpaw is fresh off a dominant outing against Boston on Wednesday -- in which he tossed seven scoreless innings -- and the Angels rank last in the AL in OPS this month. Add in Moore's strikeout ability (8.4 K/9 this year), and there are enough reasons to start him in deep mixed leagues.
Jake Peavy (vs. COL, vs. ARI): Peavy struggled on Wednesday in a favorable matchup against the A's, but the Giants righty still posted a 3.29 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP across five June starts. Next week's schedule is tough, as the Rockies and D-backs both rank among the top four NL clubs in OPS this season, so starting Peavy in standard leagues is a little too risky. But considering his solid June numbers, the 35-year-old deserves consideration in deeper formats.
Zach Steinhorn is a fantasy baseball writer for MLB.com.