As someone who yearns one year to see a crazy series of tiebreakers at the end of the regular season, the National League presents a very intriguing scenario, in contrast to the American League (which might have all the seeding complete before the weekend).
There is a possibility of having 6 teams in the NL finish with the same record, and 5 of those teams having to play at least one tiebreaker (Atlanta has already clinched their division, and they wouldn’t have to participate, as determining seeding in the NLDS doesn’t require a tiebreaker game).
The most likely ending record for a 5-way tie is 92-70. Here’s what the other 5 contenders would have to do this week in order to set up that tie:
CHC (4 PIT, 3 STL) 1-6 (with at least 2 losses against STL)
MIL (3@STL, 3 DET)3-3 (with at least 2 losses against STL)
LAD (3@ARI, 3@SF) 5-1
STL (3 MIL, 3@CHC)5-1
COL (4 PHI, 3 WAS) 7-0
Colorado has the longest odds, as not only do they have the worst record of the contenders, but have to rely on outside help to get them into a tiebreaker, while St. Louis largely controls their own destiny, as they play both Milwaukee and the Cubs this week.
If all 5 teams tie, here would be the winner-take-all games next week in the National League:
2 games to determine the NL Central division winner (CHC-MIL-STL) – Monday-Tuesday
1 game to determine the NL West division winner (LAD-COL) – Monday
2 games to determine the 2 teams in the Wild Card game – Wednesday-Thursday
1 NL Wild Card game – Friday
There are many other less crazy scenarios even if this one doesn’t line up, but for now I’m rooting for the five-way tie. I’ll update these scenarios as the season draws to a close.