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Friday's possibilities
2006-08-11 07:00
by Bob Timmermann

Thursday saw a few changes in the standings and playoff placements. Minnesota lost to Toronto, 5-0, while Chicago parlayed some mistakes into the Yankees into a 5-4 win. This moved the White Sox back ahead of the Twins in the AL wild card race. The Red Sox continued their slide, losing their fifth straight, falling 5-4 to the Royals in Kansas City.

On Friday, the Twins host the Blue Jays again at 5:10 pm PT (A.J. Burnett vs. Matt Garza in his first major league start). The White Sox host the first place Tigers at 5:35 pm PT (Justin Verlander vs. Jose Contreras).

The Yankees face their nemesis in the Angels at home at 4:05 pm PT (Joe Saunders vs. Cory Lidle). The Red Sox will try to get straightened out at Fenway against Baltimore at 4:05 pm PT (Adam Loewen vs. David Wells).

AL West leading Oakland hosts Tampa Bay at 7:05 pm PT (Scott Kazmir vs. Dan Haren).

In the NL, the Dodgers started the day tied for second, then were tied for first for a few hours, and after defeating Colorado 4-3, Los Angeles moved into first place by a half game over San Diego and Arizona. The wild card leader, Cincinnati, lost to St. Louis 6-1, and have an identical 59-56 record.

The Mets lead the NL East by 14 games and the Cardinals lead the Reds in the Central by 3 1/2 games.

The relevant games in the NL tomorrow:
Cincinnati at Philadelphia, 4:05 pm PT - Kyle Lohse vs. Jon Lieber
San Diego at Houston, 5:05 pm PT - Chan Ho Park vs. Andy Pettite
Florida at Arizona, 6:40 pm PT - Josh Johnson vs. Livan Hernandez (1st start for Arizona)
San Francisco at Los Angeles, 7:40 pm PT - Noah Lowry vs. Mark Hendrickson.

If the Dodgers and Reds win, the playoff slots remain the same as they are now.

Other permutations:
Dodgers, Padres, Diamondbacks win, Reds lose - LA leads West, San Diego and Arizona tie for wild card
Dodgers, Padres win, Diamondbacks and Reds lose - LA leads West, San Diego is the wild card
Padres, Diamondbacks, and Reds win, Dodgers lose - San Diego and Arizona tie for West lead, Cincinnati is wild card
Padres and Diamondbacks win, Reds and Dodgers lose - San Diego and Arizona would share West lead and wild card lead. Arizona leads the season series 5-1.
Padres win, Diamondbacks, Reds, and Dodgers lose - San Diego leads West, LA and Cincinnati are tied for wild card.
Diamondbacks win, Padres, Dodgers, and Reds lose - Arizona leads West, LA and Cincinnati are tied for wild card.
All four teams lose - You do the math.

I don't think I can keep doing this for two months. Somebody go on a winning streak! Oh wait, somebody did. Never mind. Somebody go on a losing streak. Oh wait, they're all doing that.

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