MLB playoff odds Sept. 17: Royals hanging on, Rangers still slipping

Jason Miller

Taking a look at the latest MLB post-season odds from Cool Standings and Baseball Prospectus.

At least one team (the Red Sox) can finally clinch a spot in the postseason with a win on Tuesday, but several of the October golden tickets are still very much in the air. Though several teams were idle Monday, things still managed to get more complicated in the AL Wild Card race, and some of the NL's best clubs seem to have temporarily stalled out.

Let's take a look at how Monday's results affected the AL playoff picture: Baseball Prospectus
Team Wins Losses Div WC POFF Div WC POFF
Red Sox 92 59 99.9 <0.1 100 100 0 100
Tigers 87 63 99.7 0.3 99.9 99.7 0.3 100
Athletics 88 62 99.8 0.2 99.9 99.5 0.5 100
Rays 82 67 <0.1 67.0 67.0 0 81.8 81.8
Indians 81 69 0.3 58.7 59.0 0.3 45.8 46.1
Rangers 81 68 0.2 46.2 46.4 0.5 53.3 53.9
Royals 79 71 <0.1 13.4 13.4 0 7.9 7.9
Yankees 79 71 0.0 7.6 7.6 0 4.4 4.4
Orioles 79 70 <0.1 6.6 6.6 0 5.9 5.9

The Royals routed the Indians Monday night, starting the biggest series of their season off on the right track. KC now has better odds at a playoff spot than Yankees and Orioles, who were idle Monday. The big reason for their jump in the odds, other than the win, is that they mostly control their own fate in the next week by taking on both the Tribe and the Rangers.

Speaking of Texas, their seventh straight loss dropped them below the Rays in Wild Card picture and put their odds at a playoff berth at worse than 50 percent (per Cool Standings, at least) for the first time since July. If the Rangers can't scrounge out a few wins in the next couple days, their may be on the outside looking in come October.

A Tigers win coupled with an Indians loss dropped their magic number down to seven. The Red Sox were idle Monday. They can clinch a spot with a win over the O's Tuesday.

Now to the National League:

Team Wins Losses Div WC POFF Div WC POFF
Braves 89 60 99.9 <0.1 99.9 100 0 100
Dodgers 86 64 99.9 0 99.9 100 0 100
Cardinals 87 63 58.4 41.4 99.8 50.5 49.4 99.9
Pirates 87 63 33.2 66.6 99.8 38.0 61.9 99.9
Reds 85 66 8.4 89.5 98.0 11.5 90.7 98.2
Nationals 79 70 <0.1 2.4 2.4 0.0 2.0 2.0

The NL postseason picture didn't change much Monday.

The Dodgers lost while the Braves were idle, halting their magic division-clinching numbers at four games apiece. The Pirates and Cardinals also lost, keeping them in a dead heat for the NL Central crown. The Reds did manage to win, pushing the idle Nationals a smidgen closer to oblivion.

The Nats, who host a double-header against the Braves Tuesday because of Monday's Navy Yard tragedy, will essentially decide their fate by the end of the night.

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