John Lannan, SP (WAS): I recently dropped Johnny Cueto and added John Lannan in my league, mostly because Lannan has been the Washington Nationals' best pitcher this year. He hasn't allowed a run in his last 19 innings pitched. He had an 11-strikeout outing against the New York Mets on April 17, which got him plenty of fantasy attention. He walks more hitters that I would like - at least three walks in four of his five outings and 14 in 30.2 IP - but he has been dependable and I'll ride him until he shows me otherwise.
John Danks, SP (CHW): It's hard not to like John Danks on your fantasy roster. He's a borderline waiver wire guy, but if you subtract his one bad outing this year, his stats are among the better pitchers in the league. If you scratch his porous outing against Minnesota on April 9 (his second start of the year), here are his cumulative numbers: 27.2, 3 ER, 18 K, 4 BB, 14 H, 1 HR. With stats like that, he has value in a lot of leagues.
Jair Jurrjens, SP (ATL): Although you wouldn't be able to pick Jair Jurrjens out of a lineup of guys with name tags, he's been a consistent pitcher this season. His shortest start lasted 5.1 innings, but that was his only start (out of five) that he didn't complete at least six full innings. He has a 25-13 strikeout-walk ratio, which indicates that he can probably continue this. The Atlanta Braves continue to unearth anonymous castaway pitchers who fill out their rotation year after year. With three wins, a respectable ERA of 3.45 and a 1.21 WHIP, Jurrjens is worth adding in deeper leagues.
Chad Gaudin, SP (OAK): The Oakland Athletics have been an April powerhouse and thus one of the surprises of the young season. Starting pitching has helped them to their share of the American League West lead and Chad Gaudin has been a part of it. After allowing five earned runs in his first start of the season, Gaudin has scattered five runs over his last four starts. He has 23 strikeouts versus only eight walks and a sparkling WHIP of 1.10. He pitched well in spurts last year, but most people still associate him with his days in Tampa Bay. He's a reliable fantasy pitcher now.
Armando Galarragga, SP (DET): Armando Galarragga has only had three starts, but you can make the case that he's been the Detroit Tigers' best pitcher this season. Galarragga took a no-hitter into the sixth inning in his last start, but manager Jim Leyland is a bit concerned that when things go bad for Galarragga, they unravel quickly. Here's the conundrum: Galarragga has pitched well so far, which is better than most Tigers starters can say, so Leyland will either keep him up and hope that Galarragga learns to weather some adversity, or he will send him down for more seasoning. Galarragga is in the rotation because Dontrelle Willis is shelved with a knee injury. Ride him until he pitches his way out of the rotation.
Max Scherzer, P (ARZ): If Evan Longoria is the most hyped position player prospect this year, Max Scherzer is his pitching equal. All eyes were on Scherzer when he was called up on April 27, and it didn't take long for us to get our first Major League look: 4.1 IP, 0 H, 0 BB, 0 ER, 7 K. He pitched 4.1 innings of perfect baseball and will now make his first start this coming Monday. The upside is tremendous with this kid and he could find a spot in the Arizona Diamondbacks rotation down the stretch of the season. If you have a lousy veteran to drop, take a chance on his upside. The seven strikeouts in 4.1 IP is a tantalizing thought.