In the final week of baseball season, all five playoff spots have been filled in the National League, while they're still trying to settle the Wild Card in the American League. How wack is that?
Let's start in the NL. Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, & St. Louis will all advance. One wins the NL Central (St. Louis is currently in 1st), while the others claim the Wild Cards and will have at it in a 1-game playoff to determine the official #4 seed. Cincinnati needed a walk-off win over the Mets Monday to punch their ticket, while Pittsburgh, ending a 21 year draught, beat the Cubs. They're still trying to figure out who's #1 between Atlanta, St. Louis, & Los Angeles in terms of overall records. As it is, the Braves & Dodgers already clinched their divisions, but the Central 3-way will come down to the wire.
Over in the AL, Oakland & Boston have clinched, but Detroit would have to beat Minnesota and hope the White Sox can spoil things for Cleveland in order to lock up the Central. The Wild Card is unsettled, as Tampa Bay tries to hold off the Yankees, Cleveland, Texas, & Kansas City after sweeping 4 straight from Baltimore. The Orioles are clinging by a thread as a result. Right now, Tampa & Cleveland hold the Cards, but each has 6 games left.
It's too soon to predict anything in the AL. They love milking the drama, but it's just about done in the NL. Once the Central is decided, so will the Wild Card. My projection:
2. St. Louis.
3. Los Angeles.
We'll all find out how this ends come Sunday or sooner.