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Previewing Wednesday’s meaningful baseball

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Four of the six divisions are spoken for already, but the AL East and NL Central are still technically up for grabs and there’s still some Wild Card business to be taken care of in both leagues. Here’s a preview of meaningful baseball being played on Wednesday.

AL East (91-66 Red Sox lead 88-69 Yankees by three games)

The Red Sox will clinch with any combination of three wins and Yankee losses.

NL Central (88-69 Cubs lead 83-74 Brewers by five games)

The Cubs will clinch with a win or a Brewers loss.

AL Wild Card (83-74 Twins lead 78-79 Angels by five games)

The Twins clinch the second AL Wild Card with a win or an Angels loss. The Yankees have the first Wild Card (home field advantage) assuming they don’t win the AL East.

NL Wild Card (85-73 Rockies lead 83-74 Brewers by 1.5 games and 82-75 Cardinals by 2.5 games)

The Rockies will clinch the second NL Wild Card with any combination of four wins and Brewer losses, as well as three Cardinal losses. The Diamondbacks have already clinched the first Wild Card.

Report: Mets showing interest in Bartolo Colon

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Last month, free agent right-hander Bartolo Colon told reporters that he’d be open to taking a minor league deal in 2018, but only if he was guaranteed a return to the Mets’ system. The 44-year-old starter is nearing the end of a 20-year career, and it makes sense that he’d want to have one last hurrah in the city where he had some of his most productive years.

Now, Twins starter Ervin Santana tells Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press, it looks like the Mets might also be open to a reunion. It’s doubtful that Colon has all that much left in the tank, especially following a combined 7-14 record and 6.48 ERA for the Braves and Twins last year, but he’s not necessarily looking to reproduce the 15+ win, sub-4.00 ERA totals of years past.

Instead, Santana says, Colon is seeking the opportunity to win just six more games. He’ll enter the 2018 season five wins shy of the all-time record for a Latin American-born player, and is hoping to claim that title for himself before he enters retirement in 2019. Former Orioles and Expos hurler Dennis Martinez currently holds the record after clinching his 245th win back in 1998. While it took Colon a full season of starts to come up with even seven wins in 2017, he’s only one year removed from a 15-win campaign in 2016. Provided that the Mets are willing to gamble on him again, the milestone may not be that far out of reach.