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MLB Playoff Picture 2018: Bracket, Odds, Wild Card Standings Entering Last Week

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistSeptember 24, 2018

MILWAUKEE, WI - SEPTEMBER 19:  Christian Yelich #22 of the Milwaukee Brewers celebrates with teammates after scoring a run in the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Miller Park on September 19, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Dylan Buell/Getty Images

One week remains in the 2018 MLB regular season, and the playoff picture is finally starting to take shape.

So far, five teams have clinched a spot in the postseason. The Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians and Atlanta Braves have secured their respective divisions, the Houston Astros have sealed a spot and have a lead in their division race, and the New York Yankees will be one of the participants in the AL Wild Card Game.

What remains is essentially six teams fighting for five spots, with three division titles still to be decided.

An updated look at the postseason bracket is available at MLB.com.

Below are the AL and NL wild-card standings, along with each team's odds of reaching the postseason following Sunday's action, according to FanGraphs.

     

American League

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x-New York Yankees, 95-60 (WC1); 100.0 percent playoff odds

Oakland Athletics, 94-62 (WC2); 100.0 percent playoff odds

Tampa Bay Rays, 87-68 (6.5 GB); 0.0 percent playoff odds

Seattle Mariners, 85-70 (8.5 GB); eliminated from playoffs

     

National League

Milwaukee Brewers, 89-67 (WC1); 99.0 percent playoff odds

St. Louis Cardinals, 87-69 (WC2); 79.6 percent playoff odds

Colorado Rockies, 85-70 (1.5 GB); 27.4 percent playoff odds

Arizona Diamondbacks, 79-77 (8.0 GB); eliminated from playoffs

    

Outlook

OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 20:  Stephen Piscotty #25 of the Oakland Athletics is congratulated by Jed Lowrie #8 and Matt Chapman #26 after Piscotty hit a three-run home run against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the bottom of the third inning at Oaklan
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The American League side of things is all but decided, as the Rays' elimination number stands at one heading into the week. That means that the next win by Oakland or loss by Tampa Bay will officially clinch a spot for the A's.

The AL Wild Card Game will be played on October 3 and can be seen on TBS.

The National League side is a bit more cluttered.

The Chicago Cubs hold a 2.5-game lead over the Brewers in the NL Central standings, with the Cardinals at 4.5 games back, so there's still a chance for both of those teams to seize the division title.

The same goes for the Rockies, who trail the Los Angeles Dodgers by 1.5 games in the NL West standings.

So let's take a closer look at the remaining schedules for each of those five teams:

  • CHCvs. PIT (4), vs. STL (3)
  • MIL: at STL (3), vs. DET (3)
  • STLvs. MIL (3), at CHC (3)
  • LAD: at ARI (3), at SF (3)
  • COL: vs. PHI (4), vs. WAS (3)

And here's a look at how each team has performed in September, to give an idea of their momentum:

  • CHC: 12-9 (+5 RD)
  • MIL: 13-7 (+43 RD)
  • STL: 11-10 (+8 RD)
  • LAD: 14-7 (+47 RD)
  • COL: 13-8 (+22 RD)

The Cardinals have the toughest road ahead as they face off against the Cubs and Brewers. That also means they control their own destiny to some degree, as a big final week could vault them into the division lead.

The Rockies might actually have the most favorable remaining schedule with series against a pair of non-contenders at home, but they're at an obvious disadvantage with a 1.5-game deficit to bridge in both the wild-card race and the NL West standings.

The NL Wild Card Game will be played on October 2, and ESPN will have the broadcast.  

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