We’ve got some potential craziness building in the American League Wild Card race with one day left in the regular season.
After dropping both halves of a doubleheader on Saturday in Baltimore, the Yankees are now just one game up for the first spot — hosting duties. Houston, currently in the second spot, won again Saturday in Arizona behind two Colby Rasmus homers and a very good start from Collin McHugh. Anaheim won Saturday in Arlington, Texas in maybe the wildest game of the year to stay one game back of the ‘Stros.
This also touches the still-undecided American League West, where the Rangers only have a one-game lead on the Astros and will face a fired-up Angels team on Sunday afternoon. By design, the start times for all these games that matter are the same: 3:05 p.m. ET. Only the Cardinals and Braves will play at a different time (due to Saturday’s rainout).
Buckle up, people. Get your popcorn ready. All that.
Your box scores and AP recaps from Saturday …
Yankees 2, Orioles 1 (Game 1)
Royals 5, Twins 1
Angels 11, Rangers 10
Nationals 3, Mets 1 (Game 1)
Rockies 2, Giants 3
Marlins 7, Phillies 6 (Game 1)
Blue Jays 3, Rays 4
Reds 3, Pirates 1
Yankees 3, Orioles 4 (Game 2)
Red Sox 0, Indians 2
Cubs 1, Brewers 0
Nationals 2, Mets 0 (Game 2)
Marlins 5, Phillies 2 (Game 2)
Astros 6, Diamondbacks 2
Padres 1, Dodgers 2
Athletics 7, Mariners 5 (13 innings)
Baseball’s best division has been decided.
Tyler Lyons threw seven scoreless innings and Jason Heyward slugged a fourth-inning grand slam as the Cardinals dominated the Pirates 11-1 in the second half of a doubleheader Wednesday night in Pittsburgh to clinch the 2015 National League Central title. It’s the third consecutive division championship for the Cardinals, who have advanced to the NLCS in each of the last four postseasons and carry designs on another late run this year.
Pittsburgh, with Wednesday’s loss, is now locked into a National League Wild Card Game matchup with the Cubs. And the Cardinals will take on the winner of that game in the best-of-five NLDS.
It’s a shame that only one of those terrific National League Central teams can advance past the Division Series. Here’s where their records rank currently in all of Major League Baseball …
- Cardinals: 100-59
- Pirates: 96-63
- Cubs: 93-65
- Blue Jays: 92-65
- Royals: 90-67
- Mets: 89-68
This is the first 100-win team in St. Louis since 2005.
Go ahead and breathe now, Mets fans.
Yoenis Cespedes was removed from Wednesday’s game — and looked to be in some serious pain — after taking a Justin De Fratus pitch off his left hand in the top of the third inning. But it sounds like everything is going to be fine.
Per beat writer Anthony DiComo of MLB.com, early X-rays came back negative for any type of fractures. Cespedes has a contusion (and probably a bit of swelling) on his left middle and ring fingers.
Cespedes might not see much action over the Mets’ final four games, but he should be 100 percent for the start of the NLDS next Friday against the Dodgers.
The 29-year-old slugger reached base in both of his plate appearances Wednesday against the Phillies. He entered the night with a .940 OPS, 17 homers, and 44 RBI in 53 games with New York.