Cubs and Twins Clinch Post Season Berths
The playoff picture in major league baseball became a little clearer on September 27th as both the Chicago Cubs and Minnesota Twins clinched spots in the postseason.
The defending World Series champion Chicago Cubs will get a chance to try match the 1907-08 Cubs’ consecutive World Series titles after clinching the National League Central title with a 5-1 win over the Cardinals in St. Louis. After a lackluster first half of the season, in which the Cubs were two games below .500 at the All Star Break, Chicago put it together in the second half to repeat as division winners. Unlike last year however, they will finish with the third best record among N.L division winners, and will open the playoffs on the road at N.L East champ Washington.
The Los Angeles Dodgers have already clinched the best record in the National League, and will host the winner of the Wild Card game. Arizona will host the N.L Wild Card one game playoff. The only N.L. playoff spot yet to be determined is the second Wild Card, though it is increasingly likely that Colorado will be the Diamondbacks’ opponent. The Rockies beat Miami 15-9 while the Milwaukee Brewers lost to the Cincinnati Reds. The Brewers dropped 2 ½ games behind the Rockies with St. Louis 3 ½ back.
In the American League, the Minnesota Twins clinched the 2nd A.L. Wild Card after the Chicago White Sox beat the Los Angeles Angels, eliminating the Angels. Last season, the Twins lost 103 games while winning just 59; this season they were 83-75 with five left to play. The Twins are the first major league club to make the playoffs following a 100 loss season. They will play at New York or Boston in the Wild Card game. The Red Sox were three games up on the Yankees. The Cleveland Indians and Houston Astros, who have clinched the A.L. Central and West, are neck and neck in the race for the best record in the American League.