Action heats up as MLB regular season draws to a close

Published 5:46 pm Thursday, September 27, 2018

With less than four days remaining in the 2018 Major League Baseball season at the time of the penning of this article, there are a few things to be settled as teams are battling down to the wire to secure a post-season bid.
For many locals, the best news is that the Atlanta Braves are once again back in post-season action after having to endure some recent bad luck in the last couple of seasons or so.
With a young team that has been built to get back to the glory days of the 1990s, the Braves are probably a year ahead of schedule and have provided some exciting play over the course of the regular season often waiting until the seventh inning or later to pull out many of their games.
This year could very well be one of the best postseason playoffs over the course of several years as the talent level is ridiculous and several teams have put up some monstrous numbers over the course of 150-plus games.
Even though the final pairings are still to be determined on a couple of bracket lines, here is potentially the bracket if the season ended today.
American League
Without a doubt, one of the top teams this year has been the Boston Red Sox (106-51. The Soxes have been the cream of the crop on the American League circuit recording triple-digit wins this season with one of the most dangerous slugging lineups in all of baseball.
As it stands right now, Boston would play the winner of the wildcard game between the New York Yankees (96-60) who have chased their divisional rivals all season long and the Oakland A’s (95-62) who have made a late-season charge after the All-Star break to put themselves in prime position for postseason play.
The other American League series would pit the Houston Astros (100-57) against the Cleveland Indians (88-68). Houston has won 100-plus games for the last two seasons and once again look primed to make a run to the World Series.
However, standing in the way is the Indians who also want to get back to the World Series. Records can be deceiving, and the Indians will have a fight on their hands with the Astros in this series.
National League
As mentioned earlier, the Braves (88-68) are back in post-season once again and depending on which pitching staff shows up and if the Braves can start plating a few more runs earlier in the games than they have been during the regular season it will be a wait-and-see to find out exactly how well the boys from Hotlanta will do.
They will more than likely face off against the Los Angeles Dodgers (88-69) who have been a thorn in the Braves’ side during the regular season. The Braves pitching staff will have to eliminate walks and keep the home-run hitting Dodgers in check to advance.
The Chicago Cubs (91-65) are playing sizzling baseball right now, but an interesting side note is that the Cubs, Milwaukee, and St. Louis are all within five games right now and could possibly end the season in a three-way tie that will force a wild-card showdown between the teams should that happen.
It would be the first time since the inception of the current playoff system in MLB that this scenario could possibly play out.
As of right now, it would be the Colorado Rockies (86-70) taking on Milwaukee (90-67) in the wildcard game with the winner advancing to play Chicago.
Fans in Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Louis will all be collectively holding their breath from now to Sunday in anticipation of the outcome of the remaining five games left to play.
Hopefully, baseball fans will take time out to catch the post-season action this year as it should providing some nail-biting moments and classic showdowns between the ten teams that will be vying to be crowned the 2018 World Series Champs.

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