Just over three weeks out of the postseason, we already have the first team clinch a spot.
By no surprise the Boston Red Sox guarantee that they will be playing in October and locked up a 100-win season in the process. No one will come in their way of holding homefield advantage throughout the postseason.
This past week though saw minute movement from the teams in the postseason bubble. In fact, the only change in the standings was the Atlanta Braves surpassing the Colorado Rockies as the No. 2 in the National League.
Of course the NL Wild Card and NL West race are the battles to watch. There are seven teams battling for three postseasons spots, with all believing they could make a run in October. As of now the Rockies maintain their bid for the division crown, while the Milwaukee Brewers have pulled away from the Wild Card pack and now have their sights set on the division.
There is nothing going on in the American League. The bracket will be as follows:
No. 1 Red Sox vs. Yankees/ Athletics Wild Card Winnner
No. 2 Astros vs. No. 3 Indians
Really the only question is who will host the AL Wild Card game.
National League Postseason Picture:
Central: Chicago Cubs 85-61
East: Atlanta Braves 82-64
West: Colorado Rockies 81-65
National League Wild Card Standings (Games remaining against Wild Card teams):
Milwaukee Brewers: 84-63 +4.0 (3)
vs. Pittsburgh (3)
vs. Cincinnati (3)
St. Louis Cardinals: 81-64 +1.0 (6)
vs. L.A. Dodgers (3)
@ Atlanta Braves (3)
Los Angeles Dodgers: 80-67 -1.0 (6)
@ St. Louis (3)
vs. Colorado (3)
Arizona Diamondbacks: 77-70 -4.0 (3)
@ Houston (3)
vs. Chicago Cubs (3)
Philadelphia Phillies: 74-71 -6.0 (4)
vs. Miami (3)
vs. NY Mets (3)
Washington Nationals: 74-73 -7.0 (3)
@ Atlanta (3)
@ Miami (2)
Three teams are now left duking it out for the final Wild Card spot. Milwuakee used a road trip to San Francisco and a homestand against the Cubs to fully establish themselves as the top Wild Card team. Heck a game and a half behind the Cubs, they could sneak in and take the division if some division rivals help them out. Milwaukee has a favorable schedule left with St. Louis being the only team over .500 left on their plate.
This upcoming week, no one has more pressure on their shoulders than the Dodgers who are currently in St. Louis and then head to the NL West leading Colorado Rockies. If Los Angeles can escape with more wins than losses in this seven game stretch, they should be sitting pretty in the postseason.
Arizona is also in trouble facing off with three division leaders before the season wraps up. They easily have the toughest schedule remaining in the majors.
After losing two in a must-win series against the Cardinals, the Pirates are out of the race. Washington and Philadelphia will be joining them soon.
East: Boston Red Sox: 101-46 -- clinched postseason spot
West: Houston Astros: 92-54
Central: Cleveland Indians: 82-64
American League Wild Card Standings (Games remaining against Wild Card teams):
New York Yankees: 90-56 +9.5 (3)
vs. Toronto (3)
vs. Boston (3)
Oakland Athletics: 89-58 +8.0 (3)
@ Tampa Bay (3)
vs. LA Angels (3)
Tampa Bay Rays: 80-65 -8.0 (6)
vs. Oakland (3)
@ Texas (3)
There are very few teams that have kept up with the pace of the Rays since the All-Star break. With a 31-18 record, they have fought back to be in this race, but it is too little, too late. They do play both of the Yankees and the Athletics one more time, but that will be more of a factor to determine who is hosting the playoff game than anything else
With a 2-4 week, the Seattle Mariners drop out of the race.
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