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MLB Playoff Picture Update 9/10: The A’s keep creeping up the standings

And the Braves end a wild series on a high note

MLB: Texas Rangers at Oakland Athletics Kiel Maddox-USA TODAY Sports

American League East

The Red Sox, as we know by now, went home with a victory and avoided a sweep at the hands of the Astros thanks to a walk-off single from Mitch Moreland. That was important in terms of the division race, because the Yankees were unable to complete their sweep in Seattle. New York left a whole lot of runners on base and that came back to bite them in a one-run loss. Boston is now up by 8.5 games in the division with a magic number of 11.

American League Central

This is not much of a race, but it is technically still going, so we follow! Cleveland dropped a their game in Toronto as they couldn’t get their offense going, and the second-place Twins got a walk-off from Willians Astudillo to defeat Kansas City. That kept the Indians’ 15.5-game lead in the division and their magic number remains at 5.

American League West

The Astros were looking for seven straight wins in their quest to wrap up the AL West, but they would of course lose. The Astros can’t really afford many losses this time of year because they are trying to hold off the red-hot Athletics. That Oakland team was able to pick up a game in this race with a four-run lead over the Rangers sparked by a five-run fourth inning. Houston’s lead in the division shrinks to just 2.5 games as a result, and their magic number is 17.

American League Wildcard

Oakland didn’t just pick up a game in the American League West, but they got closer to their goal of improbably taking over home field in the Wildcard Game. With New York’s loss and Oakland’s win, the A’s now trail the Yankees by 2.5 games in the race for the top wildcard spot. Seattle and Tampa Bay both won their games, too, putting them at 7.5 and 8 games back, respectively.

Currently AL Playoff Picture

E: Red Sox (1)

C: Indians (3)

W: Astros (2)

WC1: Yankees (4)

WC2: Athletics (5)

MLB: Atlanta Braves at Arizona Diamondbacks Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

National League East

The Braves spent the weekend playing an absolutely wild series out in Arizona, and that continued on Sunday. Atlanta headed into the ninth inning trailing by one run, but the Diamondbacks bullpen couldn’t hold it. The Braves exploded for six runs and went home with a four-run win. Meanwhile, the Phillies continue to scuffle down the stretch and lost another game to the Mets. As a result, Atlanta is now up 4.5 games in the NL East with a magic number of 16 games.

National League Central

It was a frustrating weekend in the nation’s capital for the Cubs, and Sunday’s game was postponed due to rain. The Brewers took advantage of this with another win over the Giants at home, this one coming on the back of a huge grand slam in the sixth inning by Jonathan Schoop, one that came immediately after Ryan Braun was hit by Madison Bumgarner and Craig Counsell was ejected. The Cardinals also kept pace with a win of their own over the Tigers thanks to a five-run seventh. Chicago still leads the division, but they are up only two games over Milwaukee and 4.5 games over St. Louis. The Cubs and Brewers play a three-game set this week.

National League West

The Diamondbacks, as mentioned above, couldn’t complete a win in Atlanta, and every loss is important in this three-team jumble atop the NL West. The other two teams in the jumble, the Dodgers and Rockies, were playing each other and finished that series on Sunday. Los Angeles got the last laugh, scoring nine runs and going home with a three-run victory to take two of three in Colorado. The Rockies do still lead the division by just a half-game over the Dodgers, and the Diamondbacks are 2.5 games back.

National League Wildcard

It’s still the NL Central Show in this wildcard race, as the Brewers and Cardinals still hold the top two spots in this race. Milwaukee continues to lead St. Louis by 2.5 games for home field in a potential Wildcard Game matchup. The Dodgers were able to keep pace as the next team out and trail the Cardinals by just one game, but the Diamondbacks and Phillies each dropped back. The former trails St. Louis by three games while Philadelphia is now 4.5 games back.

Current NL Playoff Picture

E: Braves (2)

C: Cubs (1)

W: Rockies (3)

WC1: Brewers (4)

WC2: Cardinals (5)