Your playoff-rooting flowchart

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This is the first time in five years that I haven’t had to look at a bunch of teams that I don’t care about and try and find one to (sorta) root for in the postseason.  Which is what I think you’re obligated to do as a fan, aren’t you? Even if you don’t do it game-by-game, you have to at least (again, sorta) pick a horse to ride in the playoffs, if for no other reason, than because their presence would make for a good matchup somewhere down the line.

I won’t have to do that at least until the LCS, so I’m good. But if you need to find a rooting interest, here’s a handy-dandy little flowchart that will make your life easier.

And don’t scroll down to the bottom until you’ve actually made your choices. I think the pics are the best part.

Padres, Mariners join list of teams to extend netting

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The Reds announced earlier that they plan to extend the protective netting at Great American Ball Park in time for Opening Day next season. You can add the Padres and Mariners to what will surely be a growing list.

A young fan was struck in the face by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, which gave new life to the netting debate. Some fans and media types think Major League Baseball is not doing enough to protect fans. While Major League Baseball has issued guidelines for protective netting, it is ultimately up to the teams to decide just how much netting to use.

Zach Britton receives stem cell injection, likely done for the season

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Orioles closer Zach Britton is likely done for the remainder of the 2017 season after receiving a stem cell injection in his left knee, Peter Schmuck and Jon Meoli of the Baltimore Sun report. Britton has been battling knee problems for most of the season.

The Orioles are still technically in the AL Wild Card race, entering play Thursday 5.5 games behind the Twins for the second Wild Card slot. With only nine games remaining, however, the 73-80 Orioles are likely being realistic about their chances and not taking any unnecessary risks with Britton.

Britton, 29, put up a 2.89 ERA with 15 saves and a 29/18 K/BB ratio in 37 1/3 innings this season. He will be eligible for arbitration for the fourth and final time this offseason.