The Duel

What is a Quality Start in Fantasy Baseball

Mike Esposito
New York Mets v Washington Nationals
New York Mets v Washington Nationals / Patrick McDermott
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Many fantasy pundits like to talk about "quality starts" when it comes to assessing the value of a starting pitcher. But what exactly is a quality start when it comes to fantasy baseball? For those unfamiliar with the term, let's dive right into it, shall we?

What Does Quality Start Mean in Fantasy Baseball?

A quality start is an outing in which a starting pitcher works at least six innings and allows three or fewer runs while he's on the mound. Quality starts are a pretty good measure of consistency for starters and adds another dimension to fantasy baseball when it comes to pitcher scores.

New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom is probably the best example to illustrate the concept of a quality start. As of this writing, he's notched an MLB-record 26 straight quality starts dating back to the 2018 season.

Elite arms such as deGrom, Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander, etc., are more likely to notch a quality start whenever they take the mound. However, the stat tends to even the fantasy baseball playing field in deeper leagues, giving more value to lesser thought of arms throughout the league.

For example, as of this writing, Kansas City Royals righty Brad Keller, who's by no means a Cy Young-caliber pitcher, leads the Majors with three quality starts so far.

Not every league uses quality starts as a scoring metric, but fantasy baseball players in those that do should keep the stat in mind when searching the waiver wire for another starter. A quality start or two can go a long way in making a so-so fantasy pitching staff into a great one.


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Mike Esposito is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Esposito also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username espo6891. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel. 

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