September is upon us, and the Chicago White Sox are running out of time. They just finished a sweep of the Cleveland Indians, but they play a key 3-game series in Boston followed by a 4-game series in Detroit.
The Minnesota Twins, who have three games against the Texas Rangers, are three and a half games in first place, and they have an advantage based on their Central Division record.
The Twins have 18 games left against the Central, while the White Sox have 13. The Twins are 34-18 against their division rivals, while the White Sox are 27-29. The White Sox have to beat the teams in their division, or it will be easy for the Twins.
As it stands now, the New York Yankees hold a one game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays in the division. I guarantee it will change until the last game of the season. There are two keys for the Rays to win.
They must survive a tough 9-game road trip against Baltimore, Boston and Toronto, and they have to win the 7-game series against the Yankees, three games in Tampa Bay from Sept. 13 to 15 and four games in New York from Sept. 20-23
We should know who will win the division after the last series between the two teams. The Yankees have a little tougher schedule in the last week, so they will need to have a cushion.
The Texas Rangers would like to have a home series in the playoffs, so they will need to go back to the tear they were on in June and July.
They are 31-32 on the road, so the struggles can lead them to an unwanted road start in New York or Tampa Bay. The Rangers will find out quickly if they can win on the road after traveling to Minnesota this weekend.
They may find out how much they want to play at home after a series with New York next weekend. They are 0-9 on the road this season against the Rays, Twins and Yankees. They are 6-3 at home, without losing a series.
TOP FIVE AL TEAMS September 1:
1.) New York Yankees - They have taken a lead by a nose.
2.) Tampa Bay Rays – They have a big test on the road starting on the weekend.
3.) Minnesota Twins – With a stellar division record, they may have already won the Central.
4.) Texas Rangers – They don’t want to be on the road in October.
5.) Boston Red Sox – They are lucky they have so many chances in September against the top teams.