The Minnesota Twins should begin to worry about playoff position and how they matchup with the Tampa Bay Rays and The New York Yankees.
The Twins are eight games in first place after a win tonight, and they are five games in front of Texas for the second seed in the American League.
The bottom-line is the divisional record. The Twins are 41-20, while the Chicago White Sox are 30-34. You cannot win the division without winning within it.
The only division with a September race is heating up. The Rays take two out of three at home from the Yankees, and they are a half game in first place.
The winner of the division will most likely get a Texas Ranger club that is 0-12 on the road against the other playoff teams. The loser gets a fundamentally sound Twins team that is getting hot at the right time.
The race should go down to the final weekend of the year, and it looks as though the Rays have the edge with strength of schedule.
The Texas Rangers will win the West, but they are in danger of travelling to New York or Tampa Bay in a short series.
Cliff Lee is more effective in a longer series, because he could go three times if needed. In a short series, the Rays and Yankees have deeper staffs.
Not to mention, the Rangers are winless on the road in both stadiums. They will need to get hot down the stretch.
TOP FIVE AL TEAMS September 15:
1.) Tampa Bay Rays - When you take two of three from the Yankees to jump into first place, you are taking the correct strides to become a serious contender.
2.) New York Yankees – They have the honor of hosting four games with the Rays to show try and show they are the better team.
3.) Minnesota Twins – The team that gets the Twins in the playoffs better watch out. They are playing the best baseball right now.
4.) Texas Rangers – Can they win on the road in postseason?.
5.) Boston Red Sox – They have a better record than Texas, and they aren’t going to be in the playoffs.