Well today's Games to Watch had a happy ending, as both magic numbers ticked down one despite the A's defeat today. The Rays came back twice, once in regulation and once in the 11th inning, to defeat the Texas Rangers and cut the division magic number down to 5. Additionally, Cleveland's loss brings the postseason magic number to 4.
The A's have 10 games remaining, with the homestand wrapping up with 4 vs MIN, then 3 @ LAA, and 3 @ SEA. The magic number is 5 for the division and 4 for the postseason.
The loss today, however, does push the earliest possible division clinch date to Saturday with any combination of 5 A's victories and Texas defeats out of the six games they will play in the next three days. On the other hand, the postseason could still be clinched by Friday.
The optimal results for Thursday's games are based on preferring home-field advantage in the race amongst division leaders.
- SEA beats DET (10:08 am Pacific)
- HOU beats CLE (4:05 pm)
- TOR beats NYY (4:07 pm)
- TB beats TEX (4:10 pm)
- BAL beats BOS (4:10 pm)
- OAK beats MIN (7:05 pm)
- KC idle.
- Would result in magic numbers of 3 for the division, 3 for the 2nd wildcard, 7 for ALDS home field and 11 for home field throughout the postseason with 9 games to play.
Magic Number = 163 - A's Wins(89) - OppL
- 13 = BOS (L vs BAL; 1vsBAL, 3vsTOR, 2@COL, 3@BAL) (season series tied, intradivision too close to call) (OAK vs AL West 41-29; BOS vs AL East 40-29)
- 9 = DET (L vs SEA; 1vsSEA, 3vsCWS, 3@MIN, 3@MIA) (163 - 89 - 64 - 1(season series advantage))
- 5 = TEX (L @ TAM; 1@TAM, 3@KC, 4vsHOU, 4vsLAA)
- 6 = TAM (W vs TEX; 1vsTEX, 4vsBAL, 3@NYY, 3@TOR)
- 4 = CLE (L @ KC; 4vsHOU, 2vsCWS, 4@MIN)
- 4 = BAL (W @ BOS; 1@BOS, 4@TAM, 3vsTOR, 3vsBOS)
- 2 = KC (W vs CLE; 3vsTEX, 3@SEA, 4@CWS)
- 2 = NYY (W @ TOR; 1@TOR, 3vsSF, 3vsTAM, 3@HOU)