Rooting for NL madness – September 26

The 5-team tie is still possible, but there is no more room for error, as now the record has to be 91-71, not 92-70, as the Cardinals cannot get to 92 wins now. The Cubs have done their part, losing two straight at home to the Pirates. St. Louis losing two games at home to the Brewers is what is gumming up the works, though.  The Cubs would have to lose all 5 of their remaining games, which normally would seem very unlikely, but 3 of those games are against the Cardinals. The biggest hurdle to tiebreaker chaos is actually the Brewers going 0-4 to end the season, as 3 of those games are at home against the lowly Detroit Tigers.

CHC (2 PIT, 3 STL) 0-5 ->91-71
MIL (1@STL, 3 DET)0-4 ->91-71
LAD (1@ARI, 3@SF) 3-1->91-71
COL (2 PHI, 3 WAS)4-1->91-71
STL (1 MIL, 3@CHC) 4-0->91-71

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

If St. Louis defeats the Brewers tonight and the Cubs win, the best outcome would be a four-way tie involving the Brewers, Dodgers, Rockies, and Cardinals. That would mean the Dodgers and Rockies would play on Monday to decide the NL West, with the losers participating in a three-team, two-day tiebreaker with the Brewers and Cardinals. The same records would apply as in the five-team scenario above, just with the Cubs removed. In this scenario, the Cubs would still win the NL Central even if they lost their final four games.

MIL (1@STL, 3 DET)0-4 ->91-71
LAD (1@ARI, 3@SF) 3-1->91-71
COL (2 PHI, 3 WAS)4-1->91-71
STL (1 MIL, 3@CHC) 4-0->91-71

1 game to determine the NL West division winner (LAD-COL) – Monday
2 games to determine the 2 teams in the Wild Card game (NL West loser-MIL-STL) – Tuesday-Wednesday
1 NL Wild Card game – Thursday

If the Cubs lose out but Milwaukee wins at least one game this weekend, this four-way tie could also happen (with Milwaukee winning the NL Central):

CHC (2 PIT, 3 STL)0-5 ->91-71
LAD (1@ARI, 3@SF) 3-1->91-71
COL (2 PHI, 3 WAS)4-1->91-71
STL (1 MIL, 3@CHC) 4-0->91-71

1 game to determine the NL West division winner (LAD-COL) – Monday
2 games to determine the 2 teams in the Wild Card game (NL West loser-CHC-STL) – Tuesday-Wednesday
1 NL Wild Card game – Thursday

If St. Louis loses to Milwaukee tonight, the best outcome for tiebreaker aficionados would be two separate ties; a tie for the NL Central (Cubs-Brewers) and a tie for the NL West (Dodgers-Rockies). This has many different ways to happen, given that both division leaders are hanging on by just one-half a game. The two losers would then face each other in the NL Wild Card game.

Here’s one of many scenarios in which you could have two separate ties:

CHC (2 PIT, 3 STL) 4-1 ->95-67
MIL (1@STL, 3 DET)4-0 ->95-67

LAD (1@ARI, 3@SF) 3-1->91-71
COL (2 PHI, 3 WAS)4-1->91-71

1 game to determine the NL West division winner (LAD-COL) – Monday
1 game to determine the NL Central division winner (CHC-MIL) – Monday
1 NL Wild Card game  – Tuesday

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