Sep 3, 2015; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City RoyalsBen Zobrist
(18) celebrates withLorenzo Cain
(6) after Cain hit a three-run home run against the Detroit Tigers during the second inning at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports
(American League standings as of Wednesday morning)
(Division leaders and teams holding a Wild Card spot in the American League)
AL East: Toronto Blue Jays (79-59)
AL Central: Kansas City Royals (83-55)
AL West: Houston Astros (75-64)
Wild Card: New York Yankees (77-60)
Wild Card: Texas Rangers (73-64)
The Blue Jays remain in a tight race with the Yankees, but both still seem likely to make it to October. New York still has a 4-game lead for the top Wild Card spot and they are 6.5 games ahead of anyone that could potentially knock them out of a playoff spot.
The Red Sox are still in last place, but can very conceivably make their way up to third. Hey, it’s not a playoff spot, but middle of the pack is a lot better than being at the bottom. Their strong second half at least shows a lot of progress.
The Royals have a commanding 12 game lead over Minnesota in their division, but the Twins are still hanging around the Wild Card race at 2.5 games back of the Rangers. The Angels continue to slide, but are only 4.5 games out of a playoff spot. It’s not hard to imagine a team with Mike Trout in the lineup making a late run.
The most compelling division race is out West, where the Rangers have stormed back to tie the Astros in the loss column. As it stands now, both teams would make the playoffs, but the team that falls short of the division title can’t get too comfortable hanging on to the last playoff spot.