Looking to improve your fantasy starting staff? Or maybe gaining ground in strikeouts is your main goal? Then consider these pitchers, who are each slated to start twice in Week 19.
12-team mixed leagues
Jon Niese (vs. COL, vs. PIT)
At this point, Niese should be owned in all 12-team mixed leagues and even some shallower formats. Since the beginning of June, the 28-year-old southpaw has pitched to a 2.78 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP across 11 starts, and he's certainly worth starting next week. The Rockies' lineup has struggled away from Coors Field this season, ranking 11th in the National League in runs scored and 13th in batting average on the road. Plus, they no longer have Troy Tulowitzki hitting in the middle of the lineup. The Pirates' offense has been average at best, ranked 18th in the Majors in runs, 17th in OPS and 26th in homers.
Brett Anderson (vs. WAS, vs. CIN)
Anderson has been a solid mixed-league option for quite some time now, and next week will be no different. The Dodgers lefty has notched seven quality starts in his past nine outings. The Nationals are a tough matchup for any pitcher, but they are coming off a month of July in which they ranked 13th in the NL in runs and last in OPS. The Reds rank next to last in the NL in runs scored on the road.
Taylor Jungmann (@CHC, vs. PHI)
Having allowed two or fewer runs in 10 of his first 11 big league starts, Jungmann has firmly established himself as a viable mixed-league asset. Perhaps the most impressive of Jungmann's stats is the two home runs allowed over 71 2/3 innings. Expecting him to maintain his current 2.26 ERA is unreasonable, but expecting him to continue his strong pitching through next week is not. Both the Cubs and Phillies rank in the bottom third of the NL in runs scored, and in two combined starts versus these clubs this season, Jungmann has registered a 3.09 ERA to go along with 11 strikeouts across 11 2/3 innings.
Rubby De La Rosa (vs. PHI, @ATL)
Due to a lack of consistency this season, De La Rosa is a risky choice regardless of the matchup. That said, when looking ahead to next week, the reward easily outweighs the risk. In four starts since the All-Star break, the Arizona righty is 3-0 with a 2.42 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP. The Phillies and Braves both rank among the bottom six teams in the Majors in runs, homers and OPS. Although he is not quite deserving of a permanent roster spot in 12-team mixed leagues, De La Rosa remains a fine option in favorable two-start weeks, as is the case here.
Deeper mixed leagues
Luis Severino (@CLE, @TOR)
Severino certainly lived up to the hype in his big league debut on Wednesday, limiting the Red Sox to just one earned run on two hits with no walks and seven strikeouts in five innings. By now, he needs to be owned in all leagues. However, when considering Severino for next week, I would be hesitant to start him outside of deeper mixed leagues. On the road against the Blue Jays is arguably the toughest possible matchup for any pitcher, as Toronto leads the Majors in runs by a wide margin, while Rogers Centre is one of the most hitter-friendly parks in baseball.
Erasmo Ramirez (vs. ATL, @TEX)
Considering that Ramirez has allowed five earned runs in two of his past three starts, he is far from a safe choice. On the other hand, his overall numbers this season are solid, and the Braves rank last in the Majors in runs scored since the All-Star break. The problem is that the Rangers are the second-highest scoring team over the same period. All in all, the Rays righty is best left for very deep mixed leagues, or American League-only formats.
Zach Steinhorn is a fantasy writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.