This is it friends, there's just one mile left in this marathon of a season. The next seven days will decide head-to-head league titles along with rotisserie championships. You've come this far, no reason to slow down now.
The Monday slate is fantasy-friendly, with some solid options to stream in for both pitchers and hitters. However, as will be the case all week, expect some last-minute changes as teams maneuver their rosters more this week than any other. We'll do our best to stay on top of any late switches, but be sure to check lineups before finalizing your rosters.
With that reminder, here are Monday's pitchers and batters in favorable setups, all available in at least half of ESPN leagues.
Pitchers to Stream
Derek Holland (L), rostered in 35 percent of ESPN leagues, San Francisco Giants vs. San Diego Padres: This is a revenge game of sorts as Holland snapped a string of four consecutive quality starts last time out against the Padres. Holland has enjoyed a solid second half, posting a 2.83 ERA and 1.20 WHIP since the break, supported by 57 strikeouts in those 57.1 innings. Despite getting to Holland for four runs in five frames last Tuesday, the Padres are situated near the bottom in production with a lefty on the hill.
Nathan Eovaldi (R), 21 percent, Boston Red Sox vs. Baltimore Orioles: This is a big start for Eovaldi as the Red Sox are in process of finalizing their playoff roster, though the righty has a better chance of starting in the Divisional Series if the Yankees win the wild-card game based on his success versus the Bronx Bombers. A strong effort versus the Orioles can only help, especially with Rick Porcello and Eduardo Rodriguez looking shaky down the stretch. This speaks well for motive. The opportunity is also favorable facing a weak Baltimore offense.
Felix Pena (R), 12 percent, Los Angeles Angels vs. Texas Rangers: In a time where the average start is as short as it's ever been (even without factoring in "the opener"), Pena is bucking that trend, tossing six straight games of at least six innings before having that ended by the Athletics last time out. The Rangers pose much less of a threat, especially in Anaheim. While Oakland is among the top offenses versus right-handers, Texas resides in the bottom third.
Bryan Mitchell (R), fewer than 1 percent, San Diego Padres at San Francisco Giants: Let's call this the "break glass in case of emergency" option. Mitchell's first two starts after rejoining the rotation in the beginning of September saw him allow just one run in each. The thing is, he fanned only four in those combined 11 innings. Last time out, the Giants knocked him around for nine hits, including two homers, tallying four runs in five frames. Mitchell hopes to even the score this time around.
Ty Buttrey has taken the opportunity handed him by the Angels' brass and has run with it, converting four of five save chances since September 7. In his 15.1 innings with the Halos, Buttrey has whiffed an impressive 19. With a home series against the Rangers, Buttrey is a solid bet to record another save or two before closing the season with a home set against Oakland.
The Rays are deploying their now standard opener Diego Castillo, followed by Ryan Yarbrough to work the bulk of the middle innings. Technically, the Rays haven't been eliminated from wild-card contention, though they'll need to win out and hope that the Athletics lose all of their remaining contests to force a tie and a play-in game.
The Brewers have announced they're also going with a bullpen game, with originally scheduled starter Chase Anderson available to pitch, if needed.
Projected game scores
Francisco Arcia (L), 1 percent, Los Angeles Angels vs. Texas Rangers (RHP Adrian Sampson): Arcia won't hit for a high average, but he has some pop, especially when facing righty pitching. He has the power stroke working, knocking three out of the yard during the past two weeks while also smacking a pair of doubles during that span.
Yonder Alonso (L), 34 percent, Cleveland Indians at Chicago White Sox (RHP Dylan Covey): The Indians don't have anything to play for, being locked into the No. 3 seed, likely hosting the Astros in the divisional series. They'll likely rest their regulars later in the week, using the usual lineup early on. This includes Alonso facing Covey, recently reinserted into the White Sox rotation after pitching his way out of it this summer.
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (R), 14 percent, Toronto Blue Jays vs. Houston Astros (LHP Dallas Keuchel): With his two-homer affair last Friday night, Gurriel became the 11th Blue Jay to hit double-digit dingers this season, trailing only the Yankees with 12. This isn't just for the season, it's in history. That is, Toronto became just the second team ever to accomplish the feat. Keuchel is stingy when it comes to allowing homers, but it helps to have the platoon edge as 14 of the 17 long balls he's served up have come from righty swingers.
Maikel Franco (R), 23 percent, Philadelphia Phillies at Colorado Rockies (RHP Jon Gray): Franco's future with the Phillies is very much in doubt. After missing much of September, he has just one week to show he wants to stay and contribute to the up-and-coming team. Toting a career-best 18 percent HR/FB rate into Coors Field, a couple of big flies could go a long ways toward stating his case. Gray has allowed at least one home run in 10 straight games, including surrendering a pair of blasts in four of his last five starts.
Brock Holt (L), 4 percent, Boston Red Sox vs. Baltimore Orioles (RHP Dylan Bundy): Holt will likely bounce around the diamond this week as Alex Cora looks to balance keeping his guys sharp with getting them a little rest to freshen up for the October grind. With a .355/.474/.677 slash in September, Holt wants to make sure he's not a forgotten man come playoff time.
Aramis Garcia (R), 1 percent, San Francisco Giants vs. San Diego Padres (RHP Bryan Mitchell): Garcia may not qualify at first base in all formats, so consider this taking a little liberty with the format to highlight a player for those playing in deeper leagues. A catcher by trade, Garcia has been playing both spots down the stretch, sporting an impressive .912 OPS to open his MLB career.
Kolten Wong (L), 1 percent, St. Louis Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers (Bullpen game): Assuming Wong indeed left Friday's game with cramps (and not something more serious), he should be back atop the Cardinals' lineup. His power-speed combo plays well in that spot, especially in a game where the Brewers are planning on using several relievers. Additionally, Milwaukee's backstops have had plenty of trouble nabbing would-be base-stealers.
Hunter Renfroe (R), 45 percent, San Diego Padres at San Francisco Giants (LHP Derek Holland): Renfroe is already on the cusp of eligibility, nearing the 50 percent availability mark. There's a good chance if he didn't play in relative obscurity in San Diego, his .252 average with 25 homers would be rostered in well over half of ESPN leagues.
David Dahl (L), 13 percent, Colorado Rockies vs. Philadelphia Phillies (RHP Zach Eflin): Dahl isn't running, but his .306/.340/.551 line during the past three weeks gives fantasy enthusiasts a taste of what many have expected from the top prospect. With a strong finish, expect Dahl to be back on the fantasy radar in 2019.
Ramon Laureano (R), 21 percent, Oakland Athletics at Seattle Mariners (LHP James Paxton): Coming into the season, Laureano was stuck behind both Dustin Fowler and Boog Powell on Oakland's depth chart but, with a strong second half, he's looking like he just may be the team's center fielder for the foreseeable future. Laureano has been batting leadoff with southpaws on the hill, giving him a chance to contribute across the board. His solid .867 OPS comes equipped with 5 HR, 7 SB and 23 runs in what amounts to a little less than one-quarter of a season's worth of playing time.
Hitter matchup ratings
Hitter ratings account for the opposing starting pitcher's history (three years' worth), as well as ballpark factors. "LH" and "RH" ratings account only for left- and right-handed batters, respectively.
Weighted on-base average (wOBA) is the primary statistic used in the calculation. Ratings range from 1 to 10, with 10 representing the best possible matchup, statistically speaking, and 1 representing the worst. For example, a 10 is a must-start rating, while a 1 should be avoided (if possible); a 1-2 is poor, 3-4 is fair, 5-6 is average, 7-8 is very good and 9-10 is excellent.