12 games to go and counting...
Boston Mountain Publishing - September 23, 2022, 9:58 AM
We're talking about who's in, who's still hanging in there, and who's out of playoff contention as we head down the stretch. The 2022 Major League Baseball regular season wraps up on October 5th.
Most ballclubs have around 12 games remaining on their schedule and several matchups over the next week and a half hold significant relevance as several spots remain open for the post-season which begins on October 7th this year.
IN: ASTROS, DODGERS, METS, BRAVES, YANKEES
The Houston Astros are currently 99-52 on the year and have clinched the AL West Division. They have also solidified a first-round bye in the playoffs.
Justin Verlander has led the Astros starting rotation going 17-4 with a league best 1.82 ERA this season.
Jose Altuve (2B) is leading Houston at the plate this season. He is currently batting .295 with 25 home runs, while adding 18 stolen bases on the year.
LOS ANGELES DODGERS
The Los Angeles Dodgers are leading the majors in overall wins with a record of 104-46 on the year and quietly clinched the NL West Division a few weeks ago against NL West rivals the San Diego Padres.
The Dodgers have been led by starting pitcher Julio Urias, who leads the team in wins with a record of 17-7 and a 2.25 ERA on the season.
Freddie Freeman (1B) is leading the majors in batting average this year season with a .328 average at the plate to go along with 94 RBIs.
NEW YORK METS & ATLANTA BRAVES
The New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves have already clinched a playoff berth this year. The Mets are currently 95-56 on the year, while the defending champs are 93-57, a game and a half separating the two ball clubs for the NL East division title. Both New York and Atlanta have been in a battle for the division all season, and it may all come to a head during a 3-game match-up next Friday night at Truist Park which should be the hottest ticket in Atlanta for the weekend of September 30 through October 2.
NEW YORK YANKEES
The Yankees secured a playoff spot last night in the AL with a win over the Boston Red Sox. They are now 91-58 on the year and leading the AL East over the Toronto Blue Jays by 7.5 games with 13 games left on their schedule. They should take the #2 seed and a first round-bye in the post-season, having an extra week off with the Astros.
Division's still up in the Air
Last week it was a 3-team race for the division between the Cleveland Guardians, Chicago White Sox, and the Minnesota Twins all still alive and in the hunt. Well, a week goes by, and Cleveland is now up 7 games on Chicago and 10 on Minnesota. The Guardians will be nearly impossible to catch down the stretch as all the momentum is heading towards Cleveland.
The St. Louis Cardinals are 88-64 and on pace to win the division up 7.5 games over Milwaukee with 12 games left in the regular season. The next 5 games for the Cards are @ LA Dodgers starting tonight, and then they fly to Milwaukee for a final 2-game series on Tuesday and Wednesday night against their current rivals.
The Brewers will need to add to their win column if they want to get into this year's Wild Card Series. They are currently 2.5 games behind the San Diego Padres for the final playoff spot. If Milwaukee can take two from the Cards in the mid-week matchup, there will be hope in the Brewer locker room as they have a below average schedule remaining and all of their games are at home to finish the season.
Wild Card Race
Toronto Blue Jays (84-66)
Tampa Bay Rays (83-67)
Seattle Mariners (82-67)
Baltimore Orioles (4 back)
Chicago White Sox (6.5 back)
Tampa Bay squares off against Toronto tonight through Sunday at home and follow that with 6 games at Cleveland and Houston. Season defining week for the Rays.
There are multiple head-to-head matchups down the stretch within the AL East division, and each game, win or lose, will have an effect on the other ball clubs in the final playoff spots.
Yankees @ Toronto
3 games starting Monday
Baltimore @ Yankees
Sept 30-Oct 2
Toronto @ Baltimore
3 games Oct. 3-5
San Diego Padres (83-67)
Philadelphia Phillies (82-67)
Milwaukee Brewers (2.5 back)
2 spots to fill
3 at home against the Dodgers mid-week
3 at home against the Chicago White Sox.
3 at home tonight against the Braves
3 on road at Houston to end season
2 at home against the Cardinals mid-week
American League Batting Leaders
Aaron Judge NYY: .316
Aaron Judge NYY: 60
Aaron Judge NYY: 128
Judge has the chance to win the AL Triple Crown in 2022.
National League Batting Leaders
Freddie Freeman LAD: .328
Kyle Schwarber WAS: 40
Pete Alonso NYM: 121
The 2022 playoffs resume the 12-team format with the Top 2 teams in the American League and National League receiving a bye in the first round. The 3rd best record team will play the 6th best record team, as well the 4th and 5th best ranked teams will square off in a best 2 out of 3 home series for the higher ranked ball club to lead off the 2022 MLB Wild Card Series.
OUT OF PLAYOFFS
Kansas City Royals
Los Angeles Angels
Boston Red Sox
San Francisco Giants
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