The Daily Sweat: There's not much intrigue left in the MLB season, outside of Aaron Judge
Tuesday is the penultimate day of the MLB regular season. Unfortunately for those of us that enjoy playoff races and a high-intensity sweat, those don't really exist this season. Tuesday's MLB slate features 18 games, three doubleheaders but zero playoff berths left to clinch.
The Philadelphia Phillies clinched a playoff spot for the first time in 11 years on Monday night with a victory over the Houston Astros. They became the 12th team to secure a playoff berth, meaning the field is set. Five of six division winners are set as well. Atlanta needs to win one of their final two games against the Marlins to clinch the NL East. Atlanta is a -165 favorite on Tuesday.
In terms of seeding, there's still some intrigue in both leagues. Seattle and Tampa Bay are still fighting for positioning in the AL. The team that finishes higher in the standings will meet Toronto in the first round, while the lower-rated team will get Cleveland.
A similar situation is in play in the National League. Philadelphia and San Diego are fighting for seeding. The better team will face the runner-up in the NL East, which will likely be the Mets. The team that finishes with the worse record of the two will meet the St. Louis Cardinals in the wild-card round.
There's regular season baseball on Tuesday. It all wraps up on Wednesday. Thursday is an off day. On Friday, the postseason begins with a quick best-of-three series. There's not much better than postseason baseball, and we're almost there. We just have to survive a few rather meaningless days first.
Aaron Judge watch
Aaron Judge hit his 60th home run on Sept. 20. When he hit that home run against the Pirates, it felt like a matter of "when, not if" in terms of him breaking Roger Maris' American League single-season home run record of 61.
Judge tied the record last week in Toronto. However, the record-breaking home run has eluded him. He went 1 for 4 on Monday against the Rangers. This past weekend in the Bronx against the Baltimore Orioles, he went 1-for-7 with five walks.
The New York Yankees play a double-header on Tuesday in Texas. In the afternoon game, the Yankees are -135 favorites with Jameson Taillon on the mound against Jon Gray. Judge is +190 to hit a home run in the matinee. Judge is 0-for-1 against Gray in his career with a walk.
If Judge doesn't hit a home run on Tuesday, it'll all come down to Wednesday. When he reached 60 dingers, Judge had 15 games to hit two home runs. So far, through 12 games, he has just one. With all of the hype this home run chase has received, it would be a tad embarrassing for him not to break the record. At the very least, we won't have our college football interrupted by this next weekend.
Week 5 NFL lines
Week 4 of the NFL season wrapped up on Monday night, with the San Francisco 49ers earning a 24-9 win over the Los Angeles Rams. The 49ers covered as a 1.5-point home favorite and the game went well under the total of 42.
With Week 4 in the books, let's take an early look at the Week 5 betting lines at BetMGM:
Indianapolis Colts @ Denver Broncos (-3.5)
New York Giants @ Green Bay Packers (-8)
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Buffalo Bills (-14)
Chicago Bears @ Minnesota Vikings (-7)
Seattle Seahawks @ New Orleans Saints (-5.5)
Miami Dolphins (-3) @ New York Jets
Atlanta Falcons @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8.5)
Tennessee Titans (-2.5) @ Washington Commanders
San Francisco 49ers (-6) @ Carolina Panthers
Dallas Cowboys @ Los Angeles Rams (-4.5)
Philadelphia Eagles (-5.5) @ Arizona Cardinals
Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore Ravens (-3)
Las Vegas Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs (-7)