MLB Playoff Picture: Red Sox Near Clinching AL East; NL Wild Card Race Heats Up

Major League Baseball’s 2018 postseason run is the tale of two leagues.

The American League playoff teams are all but set. Seeding and whatnot are still up for grab, but barring a miracle and a historic collapse, we know who will be playing for the AL pennant in a few weeks.

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Here’s what the current playoff picture looks like (via MLB.com).

IF THE PLAYOFFS STARTED TODAY:
One-Game Wild-Card Playoff
Oakland Athletics at New York Yankees

League Division Series
Wild card winner at Boston Red Sox
Cleveland Indians at Houston Astros

Notes: The Red Sox’s magic number to win the AL East is seven … Boston’s magic number to clinch home-field advantage throughout the playoffs is nine … Just how far back are Tampa Bay and Seattle? For the Rays to catch Oakland, they would need to go 14-3 in their last 17 games and have the A’s go 11-5 in their final 16.

NATIONAL LEAGUE
Here’s what the current playoff picture looks like (via MLB.com).

IF THE PLAYOFFS STARTED TODAY:
One-Game Wild-Card Playoff
St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers

League Division Series
Wild card winner at Chicago Cubs
Colorado Rockies at Atlanta Braves

Notes: The NL race remains fairly wide open, with both the Dodgers and Diamondbacks looming. The Dodgers and Cardinals open an enormous four-game series in St. Louis on Thursday night … Milwaukee still is very much alive in the NL Central. Twelve of its last 15 games are against teams with losing records, including the lowly Reds and Tigers … The Giants (technically) are still alive despite losing their last 11 games.

Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images

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