1. Detroit Tigers– Led by Max Scherzer, this rotation led the Majors with a 8.63 K/9 and a 3.12 FIP, which are good statistics to predict future performance. This may also be the deepest rotation in the postseason, with 4 experienced starters.
2. Los Angeles Dodgers– Clayton Kershaw and Zach Greinke lead the NL’s best rotation. The rotation led the entire MLB with an impressive 3.13 ERA. Much like the Tigers, the Dodgers have a very formidable 4-man playoff rotation.
3. Pittsburgh Pirates– With AJ Burnett and Francisco Liriano anchoring the rotation, Pittsburgh’s rotation finished the season with the 3rd best FIP in the MLB. If Gerrit Cole can continue his dominance, it would go a long way to improving the Pirates’ chances of a deep run in the postseason.
4. St. Louis Cardinals– It is unclear how the Cardinals will configure their Playoff rotation, but no matter how they do, it will have plenty of youth. Even with many young starters having to come up from the Minor Leagues this season, the Cardinals rotation had the 3rd best ERA in the MLB.
5. Atlanta Braves– Despite an inexperienced group of starters, the Braves should be confident in their young rotation, which had the 5th best ERA in the MLB.
6. Oakland Athletics– Bartolo Colon led this otherwise young rotation all year long. It does not seem anything will change in the Postseason, as Colon had a 1.16 ERA in his last 5 starts.
7. Boston Red Sox– The Red Sox’ overall rotation was ranked 11th in ERA and 16th in FIP, but the pitchers that will make up their Playoff rotation are much stronger. Clay Buchholz had been dominant all season, even after returning from the DL.
8. Cleveland Indians– The Indians’ advanced statistics suggest that this rotation is even better than their 15th ranked ERA, as their FIP was ranked 9th and their K/9 was 2nd.
9. Tampa Bay Rays– The Rays barely made the Playoffs, and they had to burn their #1 starter to do it, but if they go beyond the Wild Card play-in game, they will have some quality starters to lean on. David Price, Alex Cobb and Matt Moore could carry this team deep into the Playoffs.
10. Cincinnati Reds– The Reds’ rotation had the 2nd best ERA in the MLB, but their FIP ranks them 8th. They would definitely be higher on this list if it were not for concern over Latos’s pitching elbow, which Manager Dusty Baker said was “barking”.
You can also read the Top Playoff Bullpens here:
And the Top Playoff Lineups here: