Carlos Martinez and Michael Wacha
Carlos Martinez and Michael Wacha, the Cardinals two youngest starters in the rotation, should both be solid starting pitching options in fantasy baseball as well. Martinez probably has the most upside of either starter and is ranked 33rd on Yahoo’s Top Starters list and 22nd on ESPN’s list. While Wacha is ranked 28th on Yahoo! and 34th on ESPN.
The only cause for concern with Martinez is the shoulder injury that sidelined him last September. But so far he appears to be over the injury. 2016 will be a crucial season for Wacha in proving that his 2013 breakout postseason wasn’t a fluke.
Wacha struggled mightily in the second half of the 2015 season with a 4.01 ERA, 1.38 WHIP and he gave up 12 home runs. He likely ran out of gas. Still, both pitchers have the upside to produce Top 25 stats one day soon. However, if Wacha can start to command his fastball, he will become a much better pitcher, and could be a good play for fantasy players.
My pick between the two would be Martinez as he’s the best bet to put up 200 plus IP and 200 plus strikeouts in 2016. The hype around Martinez is fairly high in the fantasy world too, and some teams may reach too high to snag him. If you are in a keeper league, both guys are also no-brainer keeper options.
Next: The Middle Infield