Previewing the final day of the 2014 regular season …

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There are still three undecided races heading into the final day of the regular season: the American League Central, the National League Central, and the second American League Wild Card spot. Let’s get weird.

 

AMERICAN LEAGUE CENTRAL

1:08 p.m. ET: Twins at Tigers

July 31 deadline acquisition David Price can put a bow on Detroit’s fourth consecutive American League Central championship with a win over the Twins and Kyle Gibson. It’s as simple as that for the Tigers.

2:10 p.m. ET: Royals at White Sox

If the Tigers don’t beat the Twins, the Royals can force an AL Central tiebreaker (Game 163) in Detroit on Monday if the Royals beat the White Sox on Sunday behind flame-throwing rookie Yordano Ventura. Chicago is throwing Chris Bassitt. At worst, the Royals will host the American League Wild Card Game on Tuesday.

 

NATIONAL LEAGUE CENTRAL

1:05 p.m. ET: Pirates at Reds

The Pirates can force a Game 163 for the National League Central title if they beat the Reds on Sunday afternoon and the Cardinals lose. The Bucs are facing Johnny Cueto in Cincinnati and the Cardinals are throwing Adam Wainwright at Arizona, but Pirates manager Clint Hurdle has decided to use Gerrit Cole in Game 162 rather than save him for Wednesday’s National League Wild Card Game. Pittsburgh has already clinched hosting duties for that Wild Card Game. The Giants are locked in as the opponent.

4:10 p.m. ET: Cardinals at Diamondbacks

If the Cardinals win in Arizona, they’ll have their second straight National League Central crown. It’s pretty simple for St. Louis. Wainwright is expected to get the ball no matter what happens in Cincinnati.

 

AMERICAN LEAGUE WILD CARD

3:05 p.m. ET: Athletics at Rangers

The A’s can lock up the second American League Wild Card spot with a win behind 24-year-old right-hander Sonny Gray, who rattled off a career-high 12 strikeouts in his last outing. The Rangers could throw left-hander Derek Holland, who was scratched from his start on Saturday night due to a migraine headache.

4:10 p.m. ET: Angels at Mariners

The Mariners kept their hopes alive with a dramatic 11th-inning victory over the Angels on Saturday night at Safeco Field and have ace right-hander Felix Hernandez pitching in Game 162. If the A’s lose on Sunday to the Rangers, the M’s can force a Wild Card tiebreaker on Monday. Seattle would host that game.

 

MLB COVID-19 testing results announced for first week of Summer Camp

MLB COVID-19 testing
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MLB COVID-19 testing results were just jointly released by Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association. The results given are through close of business yesterday.

The MLB COVID-19 testing results are broken down by both”Intake Screening,” which was the threshold testing required before players and staff were allowed to enter camp. Then the “Monitoring Testing” which is the every-other-day testing being conducted from now until the end of the season.

Here’s how it breaks down:

COMPLETED INTAKE SCREENING

  • The number of positive intake tests was 66, which was 1.8% of the 3,748 total samples tested;
  • 58 of these 66 positives were players and 8 were staff members;
  • 27 different clubs had at least one positive test;

MONITORING TESTING

  • The number of monitoring samples collected and tested has been 7,401;
  • 17 of these 7,401 samples, which is 0.2%, have been new positives;
  • 13 of the 17 positives have been players and 4 have been staff members;
  • 10 different Clubs have had a new positive during Monitoring Testing.

COMBINED INTAKE AND MONITORING TESTING

Combining the totals of Intake Screening and Monitoring Testing, the results are as follows:

  • The total number of positive tests between both testing phases is 83, which is 0.7% of the 11,149 samples since the beginning of Intake Screening on June 27th;
  • Among the 83 positives, 71 have been players and 12 have been staff members;
  • 28 different Clubs have had positive tests overall.

Left unclear from the MLB COVID-19 testing press release is whether MLB is up-to-schedule in its monitoring testing (i.e. if they are turning around the tests in 24 hours is required by MLB’s COVID-19 Health Monitoring & Testing Plan or if, as we saw earlier in the week, there has been lag.

It’s also not clear if this sort of update will come every week or if this was a one-time thing. Guess we’ll see soon.