Looking Towards the MLB Postseason

jon abbey

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Starting this as a place for general observations and discussion about seeding and health and matchups, we never have this kind of thread but especially as someone who doesn't usually follow the NL too much, I feel like I'd learn a lot if people were into it...

Michael Pineda's immediate suspension puts a big dent in an already hurting Twins rotation, they should still win the Central and an ALDS matchup with the loser of the HOU/NYY home-field race (HOU wins a tie from the 4-3 season series).

Javy Baez with a fractured thumb, status questionable for the rest of the season, Kluber and Aaron Hicks are also looking unlikely to come back after recovery setbacks.

Also who knew that the Braves were 17-2 in their last 19 and only 2 losses behind LAD for the #1 NL seed if the Dodgers can't come back yet again at home (down 1-0 after 8 to SF currently).

Tyler Glasnow is back for TB tomorrow for a few innings, he is as unhittable as anyone if he is healthy. Blake Snell started the AAA playoff game for Durham tonight, two Ks, two singles, two walks, 24 pitches and 2 outs before he was pulled.

Severino got up to 50 pitches in the game before and 5 more after, NY is deciding to bring him back for DET this week or give him one more AA playoff start to build pitch count and strength. Betances is getting two more AA games, they start the championship series on Tuesday so he could be back in about a week.

Anyway, follow up on those or anything else, three weeks before the coin flip games and the shitty national telecasts begin.
 

jon abbey

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SF closes it out against the Dodgers, 92-52 now to ATL's 89-54 (Dodgers won the season series 4-2).
 

DeadlySplitter

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the Twins' struggles to beat the Indians have me more concerned for their October. that will be a fascinating series whoever they get.

I didn't realize the Braves were so close either. Donaldson certainly worked out for them, but will Greene/Melancon work out on the back end against elite teams?
 

Ford Frick's Asterisk

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I think the only things left to determine in the AL are home field/matchups. The Indians just don't have the healthy talent or offense to keep up anymore. Ownership handed them Carlos Gonzalez as their biggest free agent bat in the offseason, and 36% of their games have been started by guys who were never supposed to be in the rotation. They alternate good/bad opponents the rest of the way, so I don't see them being more than a .500 team from here on out, and splitting their 4-game series with the White Sox last week was a backbreaker. Kluber seems doubtful, which would leave bench guys like Bradley Zimmer and Bobby Bradley as the only reinforcements yet to come. Oakland has a tough 4 game series in Houston this week, but the remainder of their schedule is much easier than Tampa Bay and Cleveland. The Rays are about to play 8 games outside their time zone, which I suppose could keep Cleveland hanging around a little bit longer.

Agree with VORP, the Astros and Yankees have no real motivation to play for the top seed since they're better off playing the Twins than the winner of the Rays/A's game.
 

jon abbey

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Byron Buxton out for the season, shoulder surgery. Kepler and Cave are hurting too, MIN has some OF issues.
 

DeadlySplitter

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as discussed a bit last night, the Astros seem like a very poor matchup for the A's, whereas they held their own and then some against the Yanks. the A's should be rooting for the Yanks down the stretch here, although I'm sure they'll be laser focused on finally winning the WC game first.
 

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as discussed a bit last night, the Astros seem like a very poor matchup for the A's, whereas they held their own and then some against the Yanks. the A's should be rooting for the Yanks down the stretch here, although I'm sure they'll be laser focused on finally winning the WC game first.
Or, you know, actually holding off the Indians who aren't quite as dead as people are claiming.
 

Ford Frick's Asterisk

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The A's and Rays win easily, picking up a ½ game on the Indians who were rained out in the 3rd inning on Friday. This could end up being good news for the Indians though since the Twins just wasted their most effective starter (Odorizzi) on two innings that didn't count for anything. They don't have five starters right now and Saturday's bullpen game just became two bullpen games, as they'll play at 1:10 and 7:10.
 

axx

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Too early to rule out the Tribe; especially when they have the same amount of losses as the Rays do right now (61). And Oakland has 60 losses. I will agree that the WCG is likely to be Tampa @ Oakland.

What would help out Cleveland would be if the Nats don't Nats and have the WC1 spot sealed up by the final weekend.
 

jon abbey

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Huge win for the Twins in the first game today, 2-0 with a bullpen game to beat Clevinger. Now even if CLE takes the next two, MIN has a 3 game lead in the loss column going into the final two weeks, CLE needed to sweep the weekend to make a run at the division.
 

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This could be the day where the final nails are put in Cleveland's coffin. They immediately fell behind 2-0 in the second game of the double-header, but then Lewis Thorpe couldn't find the strike zone. Cleveland's first 5 batters of the game reached and Plawecki narrowly missed a grand slam. Instead, they squandered a bases-loaded, nobody out situation and despite Thorpe throwing 41 pitches, settle for tying it 2-2.

It's hard to believe that the Indians with all the injuries and poor performances this year will most likely win more games than last year's uninspired division winner (91), but their odds of making the playoffs are now well under 50%.
 

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If the Brewers make the playoffs, it’s on the back of Josh Hader. He had a rough patch a few weeks ago, but has been untouchable since, often going over an inning.
 

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If the Brewers make the playoffs, it’s on the back of Josh Hader. He had a rough patch a few weeks ago, but has been untouchable since, often going over an inning.
He's been lights out his last 10 outings, after giving up runs in 5 straight outings and 6 of 7. He's actually had sort of a weird season, but he's hot right now.
 

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Oakland and Tampa Bay both win. Cleveland not putting up 10+ tonight was inexcusable... Thorpe had no business surviving 3+ innings. Congrats to the Twins, A's and Rays on making the playoffs!

I've got tickets to two concerts this week and didn't want to have to keep getting up for work on short sleep, so I also planned a two-day trip and will just take the week off... at least it will be nice to enjoy it without giving a damn what the Indians are doing.
 

jon abbey

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Oakland and Tampa Bay both win. Cleveland not putting up 10+ tonight was inexcusable... Thorpe had no business surviving 3+ innings. Congrats to the Twins, A's and Rays on making the playoffs!

I've got tickets to two concerts this week and didn't want to have to keep getting up for work on short sleep, so I also planned a two-day trip and will just take the week off... at least it will be nice to enjoy it without giving a damn what the Indians are doing.
On the bright side, Karinchak looks like he could be a serious impact reliever. The inning I saw tonight he looked like a young Joba or Betances and he had 74 Ks in 30.1 minor league innings, that has to be the highest K/9 I have ever seen.
 

jon abbey

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Anthony Rizzo with a 'moderate lateral sprain' of his ankle, walking boot for 5-7 days and then they reevaluate.
 

jon abbey

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The Mets are teetering on the brink of realistic elimination yet again, up 4-2 against COL in the 4th with two runners on and two outs, Matz walks the #8 hitter to load the bases and bring up the pitcher who is 0-37 this season. He rips a single to left, Trevor Story hits one out, and now it is 7-4 COL.
 

DeadlySplitter

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it seems like a big break to me that the Rays get the Red Sox with Mookie/JD probably out with injuries, as well as missing ERod despite 4 games.

it's going to be a close finish.
 

axx

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Cleveland winning big, enough to say they will likely have the same record as Tampa after tonight's games. Still going to be tough for the Indians, but they are very much in it.

Cubs losing which would put them a game back of the Brewers. Mets would have to run the table at this point, which is actually surprisingly doable (with the hope that the Braves rest up) but I certainly wouldn't bet on it.
 

VORP Speed

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I may not survive it, but this AL wildcard race is going down to the wire, I think. A’s crushing everything in their path. Rays hanging on for dear life. CLE with 3 midweek games coming up against crappy White Sox. It might take 97 wins to get the second wild card.
 

DeadlySplitter

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Cubs had a "Chicago massacre" type of meltdown this weekend. Milwaukee's surge is very likely enough to lock in the NL WC matchup, with home field to be determined.

Rays & Indians are indeed tied with 6 games to go for each. A's are two games up and should comfortably be fine for AL WC 1 with two road series against AL West cellar dwellers. Rays have BOS, NYY (2), @TOR (3). Indians have @CWS (3), @WAS (3).

It's worth noting that we basically have a bullpen game tomorrow with Chacin going, and the Yankees will use openers / bullpen in both of their Rays games, using the Texas series instead to line up their playoff rotation.
 

axx

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Nats won the first game of the DH, so they can clinch tonight if they win and the Cubs lose.
 

Ale Xander

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Nats did indeed clinch.

Dodgers clinched best NL record.
Braves clinched 2nd best NL record.
Cubs and Mets each have a tragic number of 1.

Gonna be sad in the AL with a team with 96 wins not making a playoffs (with 2 WC's).
 

JimD

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Gonna be sad in the AL with a team with 96 wins not making a playoffs (with 2 WC's).
At least it's not one of those years where some team comes out on top of a weak division with 80-something wins. All three AL division winners will have more victories than the wild card teams.
 

jon abbey

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Brewers with 6 in the top of the 1st, a win for them knocks out both the Cubs and the Mets.

Also the Cards are down 9-5 in the 8th, those two results would leave STL only up 1 in the loss column for the division.
 

B H Kim

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Interesting note I was reading this morning: the Nationals will lose the tiebreaker for home field in the NL wild card game against either the Brewers or the Cardinals, but if they end up in a three-way tie, the Nationals are guaranteed home field, because the one-game playoff for the NL Central will count in the regular season standings and the loser of that game will end up a 1/2 game back of the Nationals.
 

jon abbey

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Interesting note I was reading this morning: the Nationals will lose the tiebreaker for home field in the NL wild card game against either the Brewers or the Cardinals, but if they end up in a three-way tie, the Nationals are guaranteed home field, because the one-game playoff for the NL Central will count in the regular season standings and the loser of that game will end up a 1/2 game back of the Nationals.
I'm not positive but I think they changed this in the last year or two so that can't happen anymore. This article seems to confirm that, although they could be wrong too:

"It's still possible that Washington, St. Louis and Milwaukee all finish with the same record.

It's a pretty simple fix. The Brewers and Cardinals would square off in a one-game playoff for the division title Sept. 30; that game would be played in St. Louis because the Cardinals won the season series between the two teams.

The loser of that game (like last year) falls to the wild-card game against Washington the next day. Both St. Louis and Milwaukee won the season series against the Nationals, so the Central team would be the host of the game. "

 

VORP Speed

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Oakland scored 2 in the top of the 9th last night to pull out a 3-2 win over LAA, staying a half game ahead of the Rays. Indians got thumped by CWS to fall 1.5 back of Rays for 2nd spot. Rays off tonight. Oakland has tiebreaker over both TB and CLE. Shaping up to be an exciting finish. CLE really needs to win tonight.
 

B H Kim

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I'm not positive but I think they changed this in the last year or two so that can't happen anymore. This article seems to confirm that, although they could be wrong too:

"It's still possible that Washington, St. Louis and Milwaukee all finish with the same record.

It's a pretty simple fix. The Brewers and Cardinals would square off in a one-game playoff for the division title Sept. 30; that game would be played in St. Louis because the Cardinals won the season series between the two teams.

The loser of that game (like last year) falls to the wild-card game against Washington the next day. Both St. Louis and Milwaukee won the season series against the Nationals, so the Central team would be the host of the game. "


I think you’re right. I went back to the Washington Post notes column where I read that this morning and they removed the point that was in there earlier about the loser of a Brewers-Cardinals tiebreaker game losing Wild Card home field.
 

SemperFidelisSox

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The transformation of Drew Pomeranz from fifth starter to dominant set up man has been amazing. He was throwing 91-92 as a starter in San Fran, now he’s 95-96 with a wipeout curve.
 

jon abbey

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Matt Chapman is playing as well as anyone, his game-winning blast in the 9th last night off Robles was into the hedges in dead center, a real beast shot in a crucial moment. Tonight he followed that up with a hilarious base-running deke after walking his first time up, Olson singled, Chapman went to third easily and when the ball was thrown not urgently to second, at which point he took off for home and scored easily, the play by play has him scoring from first on a single (with no outs). Then second time he hit the two run HR that has them ahead, now he just caught a bunt basically on the pitching mound, a one man team for the last seven innings (he has driven in four of their last five runs and scored the other).

And just as I'm about to press 'post', he is hit in the hand by a pitch. Yikes.
 

Ale Xander

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Cubs had a shot in mid-September, but looks like they'll finish the season with 12 straight losses. Other than pitching Hamels Saturday, Maddon doesn't look like he cares to win any more, and it will affect the STL/MIL division race. Bryant and Baez injuries were obviously a big aspect.
 

jon abbey

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Shed Long, who NY got from CIN for Sonny Gray and immediately moved to SEA for a 2018 2nd round pick who wouldn’t need a 40 man spot, singled in the tying run with 2 outs in the 9th against Hendriks and OAK and then scored the winning run on a double by Crawford, so now OAK and TB are both 96-64.