The Red Sox failed to wrap up their playoff spot, so the Yankees stayed alive. And the Cardinals stayed alive because the other New York team kept stumbling.
Tuesday will be a full schedule. In fact, it will be, as they say in the airline industry, it will be "an extremely full" schedule since the Rays will be playing a doubleheader in Baltimore.
Here are the magical numbers:
Rays (AL East) - 4 (Rays win and Red Sox lose. Tampa Bay just needs to finish in a tie to win the AL East because of a 10-8 series edge over Boston.)
Phillies (NL East) - 4 (Phillies win and Mets lose. The Phillies magic number to clinch a playoff spot is 3)
Dodgers (NL West) - 5 (Dodgers idle and Diamondbacks win)
White Sox (AL Central) - 5 (White Sox and Twins idle. They start three game series in Minneapolis Tuesday.)
Wild card leaders
Red Sox - 1 (Red Sox lose and Yankees don't play)
Mets - 6 (Mets lose and Brewers don't play)
Slouching toward Bethlehem?
The Yankees will be eliminated Tuesay if Boston wins at home against Cleveland or if the Yankees lose at Toronto. St. Louis will be eliminated if they lose at home to Arizona or the Mets beat the Cubs at Shea Stadium. Florida will be eliminated if they lose at Washington and the Mets win.
There's No Place Like Home
The Angels will clinch home field advantage throughout the postseason with a combination of wins and losses by Tampa Bay that adds up to 4. Tampa Bay would get home field against the Angels in case the two finish with the same record. The team with the best record in the AL will get the option of picking which Division Series schedule to follow, one of which will start on October 1 and the other on October 2. The tentative schedule can be found here. The Angels are guaranteed to start the Division Series at home.
In the NL, the Cubs will be at home for the NLDS and they would be the home team in the NLCS.
Games to be Played if Necessary
Cubs at Houston, Detroit at White Sox, both on September 29. The Cubs-Astros game will only be played if the Astros finish the season 1/2 game either way of the wild card. The White Sox would play their game if they finish the season 1/2 game either way of Minnesota in the AL Central.
The Race to #30
Remaining games left:
Washington (6) - 3 vs Florida, 3 at Philadelphia
San Diego (6) - 3 at Los Angeles, 3 vs Pittsburgh
Seattle (6) - 3 vs Los Angeles, 3 vs Oakland
The NL teams were off, but the Mariners played and lost their 12th straight game. Washington has the toughest schedule. Seattle however has the advantage of being really bad.
Tuesday's Games of Note
Atlanta (Hampton) at Philadelphia (Hamels), Chicago (Marshall) at New York (Santana), Pittsburgh (Karstens) at Milwaukee (Bush), Arizona (Johnson) at St. Louis (Lohse), San Diego (LeBlanc) at Los Angeles (Billingsley), Tampa Bay (Shields, Talbot) at Baltimore (Olson, Simon), Cleveland (Lee) at Boston (Wakefield), New York (Mussina) at Toronto (Litsch), Chicago (Vazquez) at Minnesota (Baker)
Tampa Bay (7) - 3 at Baltimore (includes doubleheader Tuesday), 4 at Detroit
Boston (6) - 3 vs Cleveland, 3 vs New York
New York (6) - 3 at Toronto, 3 at Boston
Chicago White Sox (7) - 3 at Minnesota, 3 vs Cleveland, 1 vs Detroit if needed
Minnesota (6) - 3 vs Chicago, 3 vs Kansas City
Philadelphia (5) - 2 vs Atlanta, 3 vs Washington
New York (6) - 3 vs Chicago, 3 vs Florida
Milwaukee (6) - 3 vs Pittsburgh, 3 vs Chicago
Los Angeles (6) - 3 vs San Diego, 3 at San Francisco