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MLB Wild Card Race Heating Up

In 2011, the MLB made a change that impacted the wild card race and playoffs as a whole. Many teams and fans are fond of the implementation of a two team wild card, but others disfavor it. However, with five days left in the 2016 regular season, the fight for the two spots in both the NL and AL has become quite interesting.

If the season were to end today, the two wild card spots in the American League would belong to the Toronto Blue Jays and the Baltimore Orioles. The Orioles and the Blue Jays are in the midst of a three-game series which could be a deciding factor as to if both these teams will keep their wild card positions. The Blue Jays took the first game 5-1. This win for the Blue Jays has given them a comfortable two game lead in the wild card race. With a must win for the Orioles to maintain their Wild Card position, they will look to pitcher Chris Tillman (16-6) to get it done on the mound tonight.

Despite that, the Blue Jays and the Orioles aren’t the only contenders for the AL. The Detroit Tigers, Seattle Mariners, and Houston Astros are all within three games from the wild card spot. The biggest matchups to look out for are the Mariners vs. Astros, Indians vs. Tigers, and Orioles vs. Blue Jays. All three of these matchups could have serious impact on who makes or misses the wild card in the AL.

The NL’s wild card picture is a little bit different from the AL’s in that there is not as much competition for the two spots. The NL wild card has come down to a three-way fight between the New York Mets, San Francisco Giants, and St. Louis Cardinals. The Mets have a half-game lead over the Giants and the Cardinals are only a game back from the Giants.

The Mets will have a tough test as they will finish the season on the road against the Marlins Wednesday night and then head to Philadelphia to play three games. On the other hand, the Giants will get to play their last five games at home. They will play two games against the Colorado Rockies followed by a three-game series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Lastly, the Cardinals will finish off their regular season at home as well facing the Cincinnati Reds twice and then the Pittsburgh Pirates in a three-game series.

The MLB wild card race will be one to watch as the teams gear up to hit the diamond. The next five days will have some serious competition and intensity as the season comes to an end.

About Troy Porter

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