Scoreboard Watching -- Playoff Bound Edition

MLB.com

A look at the week that was for playoff contenders, and the upcoming games.

As we all know by now, the Baltimore Orioles, along with the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers, are going to the playoffs. Here's how it happened and what we have to look forward to.

Baltimore Orioles -- The Orioles started the week off in a disappointing way, losing two of their first three games against the Toronto Blue Jays and spirits were down among the O's faithful. But they came back to sweep the sad sack Red Sox over the weekend to go 5-2 on the week. That's one better than what the Yankees did, and as such, the Orioles will go into the final series of the season tied for first place. They were not able to gain any ground on the Oakland Athletics in the wild card race and still sit one game ahead of them.

Starting tonight the Orioles play three games with the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays have been eliminated from the AL East but are clinging to hope in the wild card. They'll need to sweep the Orioles to have a chance for a tie, and the A's will have to be swept by the Rangers. That's not gonna happen. Sorry, Rays.

New York Yankees -- Just like the Orioles, the Yankees have clinched a playoff berth. They took two out of three from the Twins and split a four-game series with the Blue Jays, giving them a 4-3 record on the week that allowed the Orioles to tie them. The have a much easier last series than the Orioles, as they play the Red Sox for three games in New York.

Oakland Athletics -- The A's also went 5-2 this week, splitting a four-game series with the Rangers and then sweeping the Mariners. They remain one game behind the Orioles for the top WC spot, but they're also two games back of the Rangers in the AL West and play three games against them to end the season. If they sweep, the West will be theirs. Wouldn't that be something?

Tampa Bay Rays and Los Angeles Angels -- Both of these teams are three games back of the second wild card team with three games to go. So if the A's win one of their next three, they are eliminated. They're really only still in the race mathematically. Logistically, they are out of it.

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