Seattle Mariners 2021 Wild Card Chase Breakdown, Pt. 2

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 12: Jarred Kelenic #10 of the Seattle Mariners reacts after his two run home run. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 12: Jarred Kelenic #10 of the Seattle Mariners reacts after his two run home run. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /
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Nick Pivetta of the Red Sox throws to the Mariners.
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – APRIL 22: Starting pitcher Nick Pivetta #37 of the Boston Red Sox throws against the Seattle Mariners. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

Boston Red Sox (87-65, Last 10: 7-3; Playoff Probability: 92.1%)

A few weeks ago, the Red Sox were 80-62 and were in the middle of a COVID outbreak.  With a lot of uncertainty swirling around this organization, and a difficult upcoming schedule, it would have been easy to assume this team would hand back some games and potentially fall back into the pack of teams chasing the second Wild Card spot.

Instead, Boston went on to lose the series to the White Sox before taking the series here in Seattle and completing a series sweep over the Orioles.  They’re now a virtual lock for one of the Wild Card spots, and Red Sox fans can expect to win well over 90 games this year.  Below is their upcoming schedule:

1.      1G vs. NYM: The Mets are clinging to their lives in the NL Wild Card race, but are virtually eliminated when considering their playoff probability is currently 0.1%.  The Red Sox are also throwing Chris Sale today, tilting this game heavily in favor of Boston.
Prediction: 1 win.

2.      3G vs. NYY: The Red Sox throw the core of their rotation (Eovaldi, Pivetta, and Rodriguez) in arguably the most difficult three games left of their season.  Both of these teams are heating up at the right time, making this series a must-watch.  I’d tilt this series in favor of Boston simply because they’re playing at Fenway, but this series could get crazy in a hurry.
Prediction: 2 wins.

3.      3G @ BAL: Sale, Eovaldi, and Pivetta are scheduled to throw in this series, which to me means two pitchers throwing on short rest before the playoffs.  If the Red Sox clinch the top Wild Card spot by this series, expect them to switch into cruise control and give guys rest to ensure fresh legs and arms entering the postseason.
Prediction: 2 wins (could very easily become a sweep).

4.      3G @ WAS: This series involves one of the best teams in the AL versus one of the worst teams in all of the majors.  Not a tough series, but resting players becomes a reality at this stage.  Still seems like a series lock for the Red Sox to carry them into hosting the AL Wild Card game.
Prediction: 2 wins (could sweep here, but back-to-back sweeps are rare).

I think it’s clear that we aren’t catching the Red Sox – if I’m right on these predictions, the Red Sox would finish the season with 94 wins and would host the AL Wild Card game.  Needless to say it’d be an unfavorable setting for our young Mariners squad…but…crazier things have happened in winner-take-all games.