This article is part of our Mound Musings series.
Mound Musings is all about interaction. I appreciate the questions, and discussing whether this guy or that guy is the best pitcher to have on a roster is what it's all about. That said, over the past couple of years, Life, the Universe and Everything, has gradually become a semi-regular part of Mound Musings. As we try to answer the ultimate question, I'll occasionally dedicate this space to elaborating on questions from you, the readers. As we get up to speed for the 2020 season, I thought it might be useful to outline some of the things I focus on when comparing pitchers, or just deciding whether I would like a specific pitcher taking the mound for my teams. There are several things to look at, so let's go.
Roster "Slotting" Changes Everything: Let's kick things off with some explanation regarding the question I probably see most often – "Please rank Pitcher A, Pitcher B, Pitcher C and Pitcher D." It's certainly a very fair question, and I do my best to offer my best opinions, but there is a factor that often impacts the response. I call it roster slotting.
Roster slotting as it relates to a fantasy pitching staff translates to the approximate level of performance expected from the pitcher occupying that slot. On a typical fantasy roster, I generally have 14 to 15 spots reserved for pitchers. Of those spots, I usually anticipate rostering about 10 starting pitchers. Prior to the draft, I plug in the pitchers