MLB playoff picture, standings, postseason bracket: White Sox, Rays clinch postseason spots


Major League Baseball’s shortened 60-game regular season is set to wrap up in less than two weeks, on Sunday, Sept. 27. Several spots in the expanded 16-team postseason field remain up for grabs. Things in the National League are a little more wide open than they are in the American League, but there are plenty of compelling races.

With that in mind, we here at CBS Sports will keep you apprised of the postseason picture on a daily basis from now through the end of the regular season. Here’s where things stand right now.

If the season ended today

The season does not end today, thankfully, but if it did, the postseason brackets would look like this:

American League
No. 1 White Sox vs. No. 8 Blue Jays
No. 2 Rays vs. No. 7 Cleveland
No. 3 Athletics. No. 6 Astros
No. 4 Twins vs. No. 5 Yankees

National League
No. 1 Dodgers vs. No. 8 Phillies
No. 2 Cubs vs. No. 7 Giants
No. 3 Braves vs. No. 6 Reds
No. 4 Padres vs. No. 5 Marlins

The top three seeds are the division winners and the next three seeds are the second-place teams. The final two spots go to the remaining teams with the best records. The first round (Wild Card Series) is a best-of-three series with all three games at the higher seed’s ballpark. The second round (LDS) is a best-of-five and the final two rounds (LCS and World Series) are best-of-sevens.

Aside from locking in home-field advantage in the Wild Card Round, there is no real benefit to winning the division this season. There’s no one-and-done Wild Card Game to avoid, and even home-field advantage is less of an advantage because fans will not be allowed into ballparks during the postseason. Batting last is a real benefit, but that’s about it for home-field advantage.

It is important to note MLB will not play any tiebreaker games this season to allow for an expedited postseason schedule. All ties with be resolved mathematically, even if two teams finish with identical records for the No. 8 seed. Here’s how MLB will break ties this year:

  1. Head-to-head record (if applicable).
  2. Intradivision record.
  3. Record in final 20 division games (plus one until the tie is broken).

MLB will play the LDS, LCS, and World Series in a bubble. The American League bubble will be in Southern California (Dodger Stadium and Petco Park) while the National League bubble will be in Texas (Globe Life Field and Minute Maid Park). The World Series will be played at the Rangers‘ Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas.

In the hunt

Already clinched

  • Dodgers: Clinched postseason spot
  • White Sox: Clinched postseason spot
  • Rays: Clinched postseason spot

MLB standings

Below are the MLB standings heading into Monday. Division title and postseason percentages are from SportsLine.

American League

Tampa Bay 33 18 .647 92.8% 100%
N.Y. Yankees 29 21 .580 3.5 7.1% 100%
Toronto 26 23 .531 6.0 <1.0% 93.1%
Baltimore 22 29 .431 11.0 <1.0% 3.2%
Boston 19 32 .373 14.0 <1.0% <1.0%
Chi. White Sox 33 17 .660 91.4% 100%
Minnesota 31 21 .596 3.0 7.0% 100%
Cleveland 27 23 .540 6.0 1.2% 99.4%
Detroit 21 28 .429 11.5 <1.0% <1.0%
Kansas City 21 29 .420 12.0 <1.0% <1.0%
Oakland 31 19 .620 99.9% 100%
Houston 25 25 .500 6.0 <1.0% 98.1%
Seattle 22 28 .440 9.0 <1.0% 3.5%
L.A. Angels 21 30 .412 10.5 <1.0% <1.0%
Texas 18 32 .360 13.0 <1.0% <1.0%

National League

Atlanta 29 21 .580 95.8% 100%
Miami 25 23 .521 3.0 3.7% 77.7%
Philadelphia 24 25 .490 4.5 <1.0% 65.4%
N.Y. Mets 23 27 .460 6.0 <1.0% 19.5%
Washington 18 29 .383 9.5 <1.0% <1.0%
Chi. Cubs 30 20 .600 99.0% 100%
Cincinnati 25 26 .490 5.5 <1.0% 50.8%
St. Louis 22 24 .478 6.0 <1.0% 70.6%
Milwaukee 23 26 .469 6.5 <1.0% 39.5%
Pittsburgh 15 34 .306 14.5 <1.0% <1.0%
L.A. Dodgers 36 15 .706 97.8% 100%
San Diego 32 19 .627 4.0 2.2% 100%
San Francisco 25 24 .510 10.0 <1.0% 64.8%
Colorado 22 27 .449 13.0 <1.0% 7.6%
Arizona 19 32 .373 17.0 <1.0% <1.0%

Friday’s notable games

(All times U.S./Eastern)

  • Cardinals at Pirates, Game 1, 4:05 p.m. ET
  • Pirates at Cardinals, Game 2, TBD
  • Phillies at Blue Jays, Game 1, 4:05 p.m. ET
  • Blue Jays at Phillies, Game 2, TBD
  • Nationals at Marlins, Game 1, 5:10 p.m. ET
  • Nationals at Marlins, Game 2, TBD
  • Cleveland at Tigers, 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Braves at Mets, 7:10 p.m. ET
  • White Sox at Reds, 7:10 p.m. ET
  • Yankees at Red Sox, 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Rays at Orioles, 7:35 p.m. ET
  • Diamondbacks at Astros, 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Dodgers at Rockies, 8:10 pm. ET
  • Royals at Brewers, 8:10 p.m. ET
  • Twins at Cubs, 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Rangers at Angels, 9:10 p.m. ET
  • Padres at Mariners, 9:40 p.m. ET
  • Giants at Athletics, 9:40 p.m. ET

Because more than half the league will qualify for the playoffs this season, there are more games relevant to the postseason races on the schedule than usual this time of year. That’s a good thing! That’s what MLB wants, more teams in the race and more compelling games down the stretch. This daily list will inevitably shrink as teams clinch postseason spots or are eliminated.  





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