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With 7 straight wins, the Mariners aren’t out of the race yet

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Wednesday’s Say Hey, Baseball recognizes that the Mariners are making things interesting, the Giants can’t seem to close out wins, and the AL East is historically close.

Seattle Mariners v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

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Things were looking grim for the Mariners’ playoff chances just two weeks ago. They opened September with their fifth loss in a row, and by Sept. 6 they were six games back of a wild card spot and just 2-8 in their last 10. They’ve had a pretty good week-plus since, though, as they’re now winners of seven games in a row, and are all of 2 1/2 back of a wild card now. They still have a lot of work to do, as the Orioles, Blue Jays, Tigers, and Yankees are all in front of them and the Astros are just two games behind them, but the Mariners might be getting hot at just the right time.

On Sept. 6, the M’s playoff odds sat at 2 percent, but this stretch has pushed them up to 16 percent. While they’re behind the Yankees in the standings, that percentage is actually better than New York’s due to the schedules the two have the rest of the way. The Yankees have to face the AL East-leading Red Sox, the Jays, and the O’s for most of the rest of the season. The Mariners, on the other hand, get six against the weakest wild card competitor, the Astros, three games against the Twins, and close their season out against the lowly A’s. There’s a three-game set against the Blue Jays in there, too, but if the Mariners can avoid getting swept there, then they could be in business.

Of course, 16 percent still isn’t a great chance at the postseason, but for the first time in awhile, Mariners fans have a reason to watch the team in September. With less than three weeks to go in the season, that 16 percent figure could climb in a hurry with a few more wins — remember, they are just odds, and each victory increases the odds that Seattle will pull this off. They’ve still got a long way to go, but the schedule might be on their side, and the AL East could beat each other up just enough ... you can see it playing out in Seattle’s favor, which is an all-too rare situation for the Mariners to be in.