Toronto Blue Jays (85-66, Last 10: 7-3; Playoff Probability: 65.7%)
As of now, it seems likely that Toronto is the second Wild Card team. I had guessed that Toronto would be at 84 games after the wrap of the Tampa Bay series, and they currently sit at 85. Their only difficult games are against the Yankees, which makes their road to the second Wild Card spot theirs to win (or lose). Below is their remaining schedule:
1. 4G @ MIN: The Twins are struggling to produce wins right now, no question about it. They haven’t won a series in two weeks, dropping their last 3 to KC, CLE, and TOR. I’d say TOR likely wins this 4-game stint in Minnesota, but the Mariners realistically need a series split.
Prediction: 2 wins.
2. 3G vs. NYY: I previously wrote that the Yankees win this series, given the previous series loss to the Red Sox. I stand by that, but also recognize that we could find ourselves in a scenario where we need Toronto to win here, depending on where the Yankees stand. Basically, whichever team is higher in the standings needs to lose this series 1-2.
Prediction: 1 win.
3. 3G vs. BAL: Baltimore is playing poor baseball right now, but John Means is throwing in the series opener. We’ve fallen victim to a couple of Means gems, so it’s possible he produces one here. It’s almost a lock for Toronto to win two games, with a series sweep not being outside the realm of possibility.
Prediction: 2 wins (could turn into a sweep).
If their remaining ten games go how we can expect them to go, the Blue Jays would end the season with…90 wins. That’d mean a tie between the Yankees and Blue Jays for that final playoff spot, and would be a ton of fun to watch. As I’ll get into later, this would be exactly what the Mariners need to see to remain competitive.