With 2023 just around the corner, we can now start to get a good idea as to what each team’s rotation will look like come next season. Some teams, though, stand to be in a better position than others. So, which teams are set to have the best rotations for next season? Let’s go over our picks.
The Milwaukee Brewers very well could have made it back to the postseason in 2022, had injuries and a lackluster offense doomed the 2021 NL Central champions. When healthy, Milwaukee sports one of the best rotations in the game, led by 2021 NL Cy Young award winner Corbin Burnes.
Since the start of 2020, Burnes has virtually been unhittable. Batters have hit just .195/.257/.301 over that span off of Burnes, who struck out 243 in 202 innings this past season. Then, there’s Brandon Woodruff and Freddy Peralta. Both Woodruff and Peralta are among the top ten in MLB in K% and WHIP (min. 230 IP) over the past three seasons, alongside Burnes. Eric Lauer and Aaron Ashby are set to be the back end of a very formidable rotation.
4. Blue Jays
Led by ace right-hander Alek Manoah, the Jays are set to be a dominant force in the American League in 2023. Over the past three seasons, no pitcher has an ERA (2.60) lower than the 2022 AL Cy Young award winner finalist. The 24-year-old excelled in his first full season in 2022, as Manoah pitched to a tune of a 2.24 ERA and 0.99 WHIP across 196.2 innings. Manoah and splitter aficionado Kevin Gausman, the latter of whom joined the Jays’ rotation last season, made up the front of the rotation that helped Toronto win 92 games last season. Gausman filled the role left by Robbie Ray admirably, as the right-hander struck out 205 batters last season.
Manoah and Gausman will be joined by crafty right-hander Chris Bassitt, who joins the Jays after one year with the Mets. If Jose Berrios can find his pre-2022 form next season, Toronto’s rotation should rank among the best this coming season.
The Mets’ rotation will look different come 2023, but it should still be quite formidable. After the departures of Jacob deGrom, Taijuan Walker, and Chris Bassitt, New York will welcome some new arms to Flushing. The most notable name that will join right-hander Max Scherzer is his former teammate with the Tigers, Justin Verlander. The 2022 AL Cy Young award winner played a vital role for the World Series champion Houston Astros last season. Batters hit just .186/.227/.270 off of Verlander, who led all AL pitchers in wins (18), ERA (1.75), ERA+ (220), and WHIP (0.83) last season.
As of now, Scherzer and Verlander will be joined by returning RHP Carlos Carrasco, left-hander José Quintana and Japanese import Kodai Senga. Quintana posted a 2.93 ERA in 2022, thanks to a penchant for limiting hard contact. The left-hander posted an above-average GB% (46.6%), and led all of baseball in HR/9 (0.4).
Atlanta won 101 games last season, thanks to a powerful rotation. Ace Max Fried posted gorgeous ERA (2.48) and WHIP (1.01), en route to a second-place finish in the NL Cy Young award race. On top of Fried, Atlanta’s rotation included two of last year’s breakout stars in Kyle Wright and Spencer Strider. Wright rode a powerful curveball and renewed command to record a 3.19 ERA and 21 wins last season. Then there’s Spencer Strider, a rookie right-hander who won 13 games and led all MLB pitchers (min. 100 IP) in K/9 (13.8).
The Yankees take the top spot on this list, thanks in large part to the acquisition of Carlos Rodón. When healthy, the left-hander is among the best starters in all of baseball. Rodón finished third in the league last season in total strikeouts (237), thanks to a power fastball and slider that regularly beat opposing hitters. The lefty will join Gerrit Cole, the MLB leader last season in strikeouts (257). Cole also finished third in Whiff% (33.9%), behind Shane McClanahan and Corbin Burnes.