Monday, August 6, 2018

Cubs Clinch at least Tie for Title as Playoffs Near

The NL is more balanced than the AL, with most teams in the Playoff Division within 1 1/2 games either way of .500 even though they played only the top half of NL teams - so the schedule was tough for all eight teams. The Philadelphia Phillies won the lower division of the seven teams who were relegated and thus will play the last place team from below for the right to play the NL regular season champs.

The National League 25-game pool play regular season is winding down.  Teams are fighting for position.  The better seeds get home field advantage and get to set their rotations for the series (worse seeds do not).  The Cubs are hanging on to first after splitting a 2-game set with the Brewers.  The Cardinals are in a tail-spin losing 7 of 8, while the Diamondbacks and Nationals are trending in a better direction.

Team                     W-L                         RS          RA
Chicago                16-  8                     109           90
Milwaukee         15-  9                     111         118
Washington        13-10                     107           79
Los Angeles        11-12                     116           96
Colorado              11-12                     117         115
Arizona                 11-12                       90           98
St. Louis               10-13                     113         114
New York              9-14                       93         116

Philadelphia (7-5 in Relegated League) will play 8th place team above, with the winner then playing the regular season champion.

The NL Cy Young race shapes up like this.  Each of these players has one more scheduled start.
Stats from their last 6-starts:
Chase Anderson, Mil                      5-0          1.73        41 IP
Clayton Kershaw, LA                       5-1          2.25        44 IP
Max Scherzer, Wsh                         4-0          2.54        39 IP

The final regular season games should break a few ties.  And of course, everyone wants to see if the Phillies (who won the relegation league) can with their play-in game!  It looked like certain to be against the Mets, but still could be Cardinals!

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