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MLB Playoff Picture Update 9/14: Manny Machado leads the Dodgers to a big win

Los Angeles Dodgers v St Louis Cardinals Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

American League East

The Red Sox won another close one on Thursday to complete a sweep of the Blue Jays, giving them their second consecutive one-run victory in which the winning run scored as a result of a Toronto mistake. All wins count the same, though, and with the Yankees having the day off Boston’s magic number has moved down to six. In the unlikely scenario in which the Red Sox sweep the Mets this weekend and the Yankees are swept by the Blue Jays, Boston would clinch the division on Sunday. That probably won’t happen, but it’s looking like a real possibility that they can clinch in the Bronx next week.

American League Central

The Indians had the day off, but they still got some good news on Thursday with the Twins dropping one on the road in Kansas City. This division isn’t a real race, but Cleveland’s magic number to clinch is now just two.

American League West

The Astros also had a day off, and for once they got some good news with respect to the Oakland A’s. The red-hot second-place team was in Baltimore which always seems like a sure win, but the Orioles got a good start from Dylan Bundy and went home with a two-run victory. The loss dropped Oakland to 3.5 back in the division, and Houston’s magic number is now 13.

American League Wildcard

With the Yankees being off, the A’s had a chance to cut the race for home field in the Wildcard Game down to a half-game, but of course they couldn’t do it. So, the Yankees still hold a 1.5-game lead in that race. Oakland’s magic number to clinch a playoff spot is nine.

Current AL Playoff Picture

E: Red Sox (1)

C: Indians (3)

W: Astros (2)

WC1: Yankees (4)

WC2: Athletics (5)

National League East

With the Phillies recent woes, the Braves are starting to run away with this division. Neither team played on Thursday, though the Nationals did and they lost. Atlanta leads Philly by 7.5 games and has a magic number of ten.

National League Central

There was some controversy around the Cubs’ game on Thursday before it even started with Chicago having to travel to Washington for a makeup game. They did pull out a close win thanks to some heroics from MVP candidate Javy Baez, but it was part of a 30-games-in-30-days stretch. Meanwhile, Milwaukee had the day off while St. Louis started a big series against the Dodgers. Los Angeles got a big game from Manny Machado to pull out the victory on the road. So, the Cubs lead this division by 1.5 games over Milwaukee with a magic number of 15, and the Cardinals fall to 4.5 games back.

National League West

The Dodgers got a big win, which was huge for the wildcard race, but they couldn’t gain any ground in the division. Colorado and Arizona finished off their big series on Thursday afternoon, and the Rockies rolled to a blowout victory. That loss continues a slow demise for the Diamondbacks, who led this division not all that long ago, and they are now 4.5 games out of the division. Meanwhile, the Rockies lead the Dodgers by 1.5 games with a magic number of 15.

National League Wildcard

The Brewers maintained the top spot in this race with their day off, and they extended their lead for home field with the Cardinals’ loss. Los Angeles beating St. Louis, as mentioned above, was huge for this race and they pulled to within one game of a playoff spot. Meanwhile, Arizona finds themselves four games back while the Phillies are all the way back to six games out.

Current NL Playoff Picture

E: Braves (2)

C: Cubs (1)

W: Rockies (3)

WC1: Brewers (4)

WC2: Cardinals (5)