Final postseason spot, positioning has Pulse racing
By John Schlegel / 9/27/2013 12:32 P.M. ET
Playoff positioning and one open American League spot is on the menu today as the Pulse of the Postseason heads into the final weekend of the season.
Nowhere will pulses be racing more than in Cincinnati, with the final head-to-head meeting between the Reds and the Pirates taking center stage as October becomes closer to reality.
The Pirates hold a one-game lead over the Reds as the National League Central rivals begin what will be a decisive series for the NL's postseason setup.
"We're still focused on the opportunity to win the division," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.
But, then, all the Cardinals need to do is win just one of their games in a three-game set with the Cubs to clinch their first NL Central title since 2009, and they continue to show up ready for anything.
"A fight's a fight," said Cardinals manager Mike Matheny. "It feels like we're in a fight. We show up here every day excited and anxious."
The Cardinals remain in the battle for the NL's best record, tied with the Braves as Atlanta continues a four-game series vs. Philadelphia at Turner Field. The Braves own the tiebreaker with St. Louis after winning the season series, 4-3.
In the AL, the Red Sox have a two-game lead over the A's in the race for that league's top seed, with Boston heading to Baltimore and Oakland finishing up at Seattle.
But it's the AL Wild Card race that remains up the air more than anything, with the Rays holding a one-game lead as they start up in Toronto, the Indians holding the second Wild Card spot as they continue their series at Minnesota, and the Rangers trying to make up a game in the second of a four-game home set with the Angels.