MLB postseason picture: Rockies gain on Dodgers as NL races intensify

Yahoo Sports Contributor
Yahoo Sports

The final week of the MLB season is upon us and there are still a few things up in the air for the postseason. Every night between now and the end of the season on Sunday, we’ll bring you an updated look at the MLB postseason picture.

Much like the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central, the relentless Colorado Rockies are making things very interesting in the NL West and Wild Card races.

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The Rockies won their fifth straight game Tuesday, topping the Phillies 10-3 at Coors Field. That win, coupled with the Dodgers’ walk-off loss to the Diamondbacks, means the Rockies are only one-half game back in the NL West.

That wasn’t the only good news though for Colorado. The Cardinals loss against the Brewers also catapulted the Rockies into the NL’s second Wild Card spot by a half game.

Talk about intensity. Both those races, along with the NL Central, have picked up a few notches over the last 24 hours. There are so many scenarios now that our heads are ready to start spinning. The Cubs could still go from division leaders and No. 1 overall seed, to a wild card team. The Dodgers could still go from division leaders to completely out of the postseason by Sunday.

Or, this could happen.

Buckle up, baseball fans. The next five days have the potential to redefine chaos.

David Dahl and the Rockies have taken over the NL’s second Wild Card spot. (AP)
David Dahl and the Rockies have taken over the NL’s second Wild Card spot. (AP)

Here’s a look at the rest of the league after Tuesday’s action, including which scenarios will demand our attention on Wednesday. 

Champagne watch

• Houston Astros: The Astros had to stay up to celebrate. After topping the Toronto Blue Jays to reach 100 wins on the season Tuesday evening, they clinched the AL West thanks to Seattle’s walk-off win against the Oakland A’s early Wednesday morning.

State of the MLB playoff races

• NL Central: As noted, things are getting really real in the Central. The Brewers trimmed the Cubs lead to one-half game with their win and the Cubs second straight loss to the Pirates. That means Milwaukee could regain the division lead for the first time since July 13 on Wednesday.

• NL Central: The Brewers also hold a 3.5-game lead for the NL’s top wild card. They can clinch a postseason berth with a win and Rockies loss on Wednesday.

• AL Wild Card: Things are less complicated in the AL Wild Card race. The Yankees and A’s are both already in, but there’s still that matter of home-field advantage to sort out. The Yankees Magic Number to clinch home field is two after their win over the Rays.

Already clinched

• Boston Red Sox: The Red Sox are sitting pretty after locking up the AL East and home-field advantage throughout the entire postseason.

• Cleveland Indians: They’re counting down the days until the ALDS after wrapping up the AL Central on Sept. 15.

• Atlanta Braves: The Braves clinched the NL East over the weekend. They’e still playing for home field advantage in the NL playoffs and could still finish as the one, two or three seed after beating the Mets Tuesday night.

If the playoffs started today

Wild-card games: A’s at Yankees; Rockies at Brewers

ALDS: Indians vs. Astros; Wild-card winner vs. Red Sox

NLDS: Dodgers vs. Braves; Wild-card winner vs. Cubs

Wednesday’s must-see game

All eyes remain on the Brewers and Cardinals series in St. Louis. So many of the potential chaotic scenarios on the NL side stem from this series, so it’s definitely the one to watch. Milwaukee will call on veteran starter Jhoulys Chacin (14-8, 3.61). St. Louis will counter with another rookie in Jon Gant (7-6, 3.53). The game will start at 7:10 ET.

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