Don't ... trust ... anyone.
That's the best advice I can offer for this final week of the season, at least as far as pitching matchups go. Sure, many appear to be in line for two starts, but as playoff seeding becomes clearer, priorities will change. Anything a team might hope to accomplish before the end of the regular season -- whether it's resting a particular pitcher, realigning its rotation for the postseason or giving that up-and-comer a spot start -- it now has a limited number of days to achieve.
What it means for us is that the teams obviously destined for the playoffs won't want their aces starting on the final day of the season, which doesn't necessarily mean Chris Sale, Dallas Keuchel, Jake Arrieta, Luis Severino and even Jon Lester won't make the second start each is projected to make. But if they do, it'll be more like a side session, maybe lasting all of two innings.
I've eliminated them from these rankings just to be safe. I'd rather undersell them than create false expectations. Truth is they're all the kind of pitchers you'd use in a one-start week anyway.
Unfortunately, removing them makes for a thin list. Among the pitchers owned in less than 80 percent of CBS Sports leagues, Blake Snell is the only one I can get excited about, and even his matchups aren't the greatest. Collin McHugh, Zach Davies and Jake Junis are all justifiable, and if you're really desperate for innings, you could stretch it as far as Daniel Mengden, at least in a points league, where you're not as concerned with preserving ERA and WHIP. Ideally, though, I'm limiting myself to the top 12 from this list.
Which is fine. It's championship week, after all. Time to stop counting starts and instead let those big arms do the heavy lifting.
|Two-start pitchers for Week 26|
|Rank||Pitcher||Start 1||Start 2|
|1||Zack Godley, ARI*||vs. SF||at KC|
|2||Gio Gonzalez, WAS||at PHI||vs. PIT|
|3||Luke Weaver, STL||vs. CHC||vs. MIL|
|4||Tanner Roark, WAS||at PHI||vs. PIT|
|5||Carlos Martinez, STL||vs. CHC||vs. MIL|
|6||Drew Pomeranz, BOS||vs. TOR||vs. HOU|
|7||Cole Hamels, TEX||vs. HOU||vs. OAK|
|8||Johnny Cueto, SF||at ARI||vs. SD|
|9||Blake Snell, TB||at NYY||vs. BAL|
|10||Collin McHugh, HOU||at TEX||at BOS|
|11||Zach Davies, MIL||vs. CIN||at STL|
|12||Jake Junis, KC||at NYY||vs. ARI|
|13||CC Sabathia, NYY||vs. KC||vs. TOR|
|14||Josh Tomlin, CLE||vs. MIN||vs. CHW|
|15||R.A. Dickey, ATL||at NYM||at MIA|
|16||Jason Vargas, KC||vs. DET||vs. ARI|
|17||Daniel Mengden, OAK||vs. SEA||at TEX|
|18||Andrew Cashner, TEX||vs. HOU||vs. OAK|
|19||Parker Bridwell, LAA*||at CHW||vs. SEA|
|20||Seth Lugo, NYM||vs. ATL||at PHI|
|21||Anibal Sanchez, DET*||at KC||at MIN|
|22||Ricky Nolasco, LAA||at CHW||vs. SEA|
|23||Felix Hernandez, SEA||at OAK||at LAA|
|24||James Shields, CHW||vs. LAA||at CLE|
|25||Jose Urena, MIA*||at COL||vs. ATL|
|26||Lucas Sims, ATL||at NYM||at MIA|
|27||Bartolo Colon, MIN||at CLE||vs. DET|
|28||Tyler Chatwood, COL||vs. MIA||vs. LAD|
|29||Odrisamer Despaigne, MIA*||at COL||vs. ATL|
|30||Brett Anderson, TOR||at BOS||at NYY|
|31||Daniel Gossett, OAK||vs. SEA||at TEX|
|32||Deck McGuire, CIN||at MIL||at CHC|