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Position Eligibility Advantages: Starters Who Qualify As Relievers

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Jason Hunt takes a look at SP/RP specific leagues, and where you may find an advantage if you draft well.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

We aim to provide you with the most comprehensive coverage possible here at Fake Teams, as you have been seeing with our position rankings each week. These rankings are based on three criteria primarily, at least in terms of who is eligible for these position-specific lists.

  1. For starting pitchers, they must have made 3 starts in 2014. 3 starts is the standard requirement for Yahoo leagues, which are the only of the big three sites which have standard SP/RP leagues.
  2. For relief pitchers, they must have made 5 relief appearances in 2014. This is also the standard for Yahoo leagues.
  3. Finally, we look at how the 2015 season will progress, and if a player is expected to achieve eligibility at the position fairly quickly, we will rank them as well. This leads prospects like Noah Syndergaard and Archie Bradley to be included as starting pitchers.

If your league uses just pitcher spots and doesn't distinguish between starters and relievers, this post isn't really for you. But if your league does use SP/RP, there are players that can help you exploit the rules to give you an advantage that may not be easily discerned.

Starters who Relieved in 2014 (Top Options)

These pitchers are already likely to be owned in all formats, so adding the ability to plug them in as a reliever instead of having to get a closer gives a bit of a different advantage when it comes to roster construction. The strategy involved works best in weekly head-to-head formats, as you can probably get away with one high-end option and plug in one of these pitchers in an RP spot and allow you to take advantage of an extra starting pitcher each week.

Marcus Stroman (23), Carlos Carrasco (28), Alex Wood (31), Matt Shoemaker (43)

Starters who Relieved in 2014 (Deeper League Options)

These pitchers are further down our consensus rankings, so their value to you as a reliever is more draft-specific. In these players' case, I'd be looking at them if you miss a run on closers, and are looking for solid options until you can make a trade or pick up a player after the draft has ended. They also work well for that weekly H2H format if

Carlos Martinez (73), Danny Duffy (76)

Starters who Relieved in 2014 (Unranked Options)

These pitchers also qualify as both starters and relievers, and have at least some small measure of upside depending on your format and league size.

Brandon Morrow, Marco Gonzales, Tim Lincecum, Zach McAllister,

Relievers as SP

Jenrry Mejia (Mets) - Mejia is expected to start the year as the closer for the Mets, but he also made seven starts last year. Being able to plug him in as a SP can be a definite advantage if you are in weekly head-to-head formats, where depending on how you build your staff, could go with a pair of aces and a bunch of closers in the hopes of locking in the ratio categories each week and pull down saves with an outside shot at wins and strikeouts. It's a risky strategy, but Mejia would be a key player in trying that.

Randall Delgado (Diamondbacks) - Delgado started four games last year, and they went poorly. That said, he pitched much better as a reliever, including an 11.4 K/9, and could provide much better ratios in 2015 than he did in 2014.

Cesar Ramos (Angels) - Ramos isn't going to close, but if you wanted to get another reliever that qualifies as a starter, he made seven starts in 2014 and should post solid but not spectacular ratios. Most likely a deeper league option for this strategy.